Fellow photographers,

In this week’s newsletter, I want to talk a little about the next two Friday nights at the studio.  The themes are Pin-up and Table top.  I also want to mention Bonfire Night… this includes an invite to firework display and in the Tips File advice on how to photograph fireworks.

Also just to let you know that the Introduction to Studio photography workshop has been rescheduled to Saturday 26th November.  10am till 4pm.  Price £69.  Includes printed notes and lunch.

Read on for more information….

Pin-up Night

Friday, 4 November 2011 , 7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Location: Ian’s Studio

A chance to photograph an established local pin-up model.  At least three different looks and outfits.

I am pleased to announce that our model for this event will be “Elora B”.  You can see Elora’s profile on ModelMayhem:  http://www.modelmayhem.com/2115352#

Pin-up is all about the outfit and the look and here’s how Elora describes the outfit’s she is bringing on Friday:

I’ve got a black and cream dress I can use for the first outfit. It’s a sweetheart neckline with a full circle skirt, about knee length I think (not had it on in a while).  I’ve got a few corsets so I can bring a couple if you like. Portia is going to lend me a performance outfit, she says, so I’ll get that off her asap.  And I have some nice pink frilly knickers if you want to do an implied topless.

This looks like it is going to be great evening and we already have half the places booked.

Price: £25 

Table-top Night

Friday, 11 November 2011 , 7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Location: Ian’s Studio

For this event we will concentrate on different styles of table top photography from still life, to product shots.  We will look at macro photography techniques.

I am hoping to get some small products that we can photograph as part of this session, possibly jewellery.  I’m going to set up the water tank for some submerged product photographs.  And there will be plenty of opportunity to try some macro techniques.

If you have any items you wish to photograph please bring them along.

If you have any of the following please bring them along:

  • Macro lens
  • Extension Tubes
  • Reversing ring
  • Tripod
  • Remote trigger/cable release
  • Light tent
I will have items in the studio that you will be welcome to use on the night… but my lens and extension tubes are canon fit only… sorry!

Price: £12

Bonfire Night – Saturday 5th November

If you are in the Stockport area on Saturday November 5th 2011, I’ll be at the “Bonfire Blast” on Heaton Norris recreation ground, photographing the fireworks.  Details of the event can be found here:   http://www.thebridgeway.co.uk/ – If you are going and want to meet up with me please let me know.

In addition to the bonfire and fireworks, there will be live music so this is also a great opportunity to practice gig/performance photography (For those on the Intermediate Photography Course that was one on your homework assignments!)

RESCHEDULED: Introduction to Studio Photography Workshop

Saturday, 26 November 2011 , 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Location: Ian’s Studio

In this workshop we look at a number of simple studio lighting techniques starting with zero lights (using only window light) up to using four lights.  We also look at some basic techniques for posing subjects and for working with models.


We will look at how different light modifiers such as umbrellas, softboxes, snoots, grids and gels can be used.  There will be time during the day for you to practise these techniques with the help of a professional model.  We will cover basic posing techniques which are suitable for photographing friends, family, customers or even models.   We will also look at the biggest cheat of all for posing people in the studio – the use of props.

Printed notes to document the techniques we will look at during the day will be provided and a buffet lunch is included in the price of the event.  Numbers will be limited to 6 photographers and we will have a professional models as our subject.

You can see some images taken at a previous version of this workshop in this gallery… 
27 Nov 2010 – http://photos.imb.biz/models/danniworkshop (at Pumkin Studio)
15 May 2010 – http://photos.imb.biz/models/faithstudio (at Calumet)

The cost for the event is £65.00. (includes lunch and printed notes)
(A deposit of £25 is required to secure a place)

Tips File: Photographing Fireworks

 As we are heading towards Bonfire night I thought it was time to update and revise my blog post about photographing fireworks.  This was previously published on the site last November.

Long exposure is of course the way to go, you want the shutter open for the duration of a firework burst. This will normally mean an exposure of  several seconds depending on the duration of the burst.  A lot of photographers tend to use “Bulb” mode and a cable release/remote trigger.  Opening the shutter as the firework zooms into the sky and closing it at the end of it’s burst.  I’ve found that setting a manual exposure of about 4sec also works reasonably well if the shutter is opened as fireworks zoom upwards.

Whichever method you use, you will of course need to have your camera of a sturdy tripod.
Having looked at shutter speed what about ISO and aperture?  Assuming you are shooting at ISO 100.

Aperture settings for fireworks tend to be anything between f/8 and f/16 depending on brightness of the pyrotechnics. (Having said that the image on the right was taken on f7.1 – as I said, depends on the brightness of the fireworks!).   Manual focus on infinity and away you go.  Of course check the back of the camera for the first couple of images to make sure the camera is pointing at the right bit of sky and to make sure that the firework burst is not over exposing.

As mentioned earlier in this newsletter on Saturday November 5th 2011, I’ll be at the “Bonfire Blast” on Heaton Norris recreation ground, photographing the fireworks.  If you want to join me you would be most welcome.