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  • POTD 1 Mar 2009: Paparazzi 1 March 2009


    The Carbine – an old bellows camera.

    At C3 today some of us were updating the parable of the wise and foolish bridesmaids to “The Parable of the Wise and Foolish Paparazzi”.

    This evening I found a website illegally using one of my photos.

    So a photograph of an old camera seems appropriate for my POTD and for me to upload to Alamy.

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  • POTD 2 Mar 2009: Stockport 2 March 2009


    Merseyway Precinct, Stockport. Stockport, Greater Manchester, United Kingdom.

    Looking through my catalog of images to deal with my backlog I came across some test shots I taken in Stockport when I first got my Canon 5D camera.  This one I thought would be suitable for stock, so I have uploaded it and it thus becomes my Photo of the Day.

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  • POTD 3 Mar 2009: Photography on the edge 3 March 2009


    Sign Post: To the Edge. Alderly Edge, Cheshire, United Kingdom.

    If you want to see what my photography “with an edge” looked like – travel back three years and look at my POTD from this day three years ago: http://www.imb.biz/page.php?pg=diary&d=2006-03-03

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  • POTD 4 Mar 2009: Dougga again 4 March 2009


    Capitoline Temple. Roman City of Dougga, The Tell, Tunisia. Dougga, The Tell, Tunisia.

    You have probably realised by now I took a lot of photos at Dougga in Tunisia.  58 “keepers” – how many shutter clicks I can’t remember… probably in excess of 100.

    I keep returning to the Dougga photos when the images I’m dealing with on a particular day don’t generate any images to upload to Alamy.  Regualar readers will know I’m working through my backlog of images at the moment with the goal of uploading something each day to Alamy.  Some days, like to day, either all the images I’m checking are either already on Alamy or are not sufficient quality or most of the day has been spent on other tasks.  When that happens I pick a handful of images from elsewhere in the backlog (Dougga at the moment) process and upload some images from there.  Thus over the last few weeks you have got to see a lot of this Roman city from Tunisa.

     

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  • POTD 5 Mar 2009: Dougga 5 March 2009


    Stone carvings in the slave market, Dougga. In the distance is the Capitoline Temple. Dougga

    This photo serves to illustrate a good point about photography in general and stock photography in particular.  There is a classic photo at Dougga – you will find it in the guide books and on the post cards. 

    It is the temple shot framed in the door way:


    Dougga, Tunisia

     

    I always take the classic shot – sometimes it does sell.  But then I look for a different way to capture the same scene.  The classic photo works because we have a subject (the temple) and a way to draw the viewers attention to it (the door frame).  So I looked around the slave market and decided to use the line of blocks that you can see in today’s POTD as a lead-in the photo.  The line going from bottom left up to the temple servers the same puropose as the door frame it focuses the viewers attention on the photo’s subject (ie the temple). 

    So the lesson to learn from this is take the obvious shot.  But then look for a different way of photographing the subject.  If you experiment works – great.  If not you’ve still got the obvious shot “in the bag” to fall back on.

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  • POTD 6 Mar 2009: More lessons from Dougga 6 March 2009


    Baths of Licinius with the Capitoline Temple in the background, Roman City of Dougga, The Tell, Tuni

    Ok, so I’m still uploading images from Dougga.  But at least this one has an interesting lesson for those who are thinking about shooting stock.  It is a vertical image, with a lot of blank space at the top.  There is also space at the bottom and sides of the image.  I framed the image this way to try to make this shot “front cover” friendly.  Typically magazines have a title at the top – so they need a blank area in the top quater over which they can put the magazine tile.  Also they like to be able to include some “In this issue…” text.  That kind of information would fit nicely in the blank space at the bottom of the page, or possbly in the dark area to the left of the columns.

    It should be noted that this image has never actually been used for a magazine cover… but if it ever is… you now know the reasons why it might have been chosen.

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  • POTD 7 Mar 2009: Last of Dougga 7 March 2009


    Roman City of Dougga, The Tell, Tunisia.

    This evening I finally processed the last few images from Dougga.  From that batch I could have selected a photo of a Roman toilet as my POTD.  I could also have selected the acheological remains of a Roman brothel or even a photo of the rather rude carving the Romans used to point to the afformentioned building.  However… as you can see I decided to upload the single image from this batch that is of sheep, olive trees and beautiful scenary.   Sorry.

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  • POTD 8 Mar 2009: The Ribat, Sousse 8 March 2009


    The Ribat, a fortified monastery within the Medina, Sousse, Tunisia

    I’m sticking the the Tunisian images for a little while.  This is the Sousse Ribat, a fortified monastery.

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  • POTD 9 Mar 2009: Drummer 9 March 2009


    An African drummer, in the Medina, Sousse, Tunisia.

    Street entertainer in the Medina in Sousse.  You could hear this guy from a very long way away.

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  • POTD 10 Mar 2009: Sousse Ribat 10 March 2009


    The Ribat, a fortified monastery within the Medina, Sousse, Tunisia.

    This is the view inside the fortified monastery at Souse.  Not really much else to say about this photo.

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  • POTD 11 Mar 2009: Flairs – a good style? 11 March 2009


    A domed room above the main gate of the Ribat, a fortified monastery within the Medina, Sousse

    For today’s POTD I want to ask you what you think of flairs.  Is is a good style?  No I’m not talking about 1970’s trousers… but lens flair.  I’ve read many times that lens flair is a bad thing… that’s why we fit lens hoods to our cameras.  May be it is because I like to photograph Middle Eastern / Arabic locations – but often I think a well positioned bit of lens flair can actually add to an image.  Take today’s POTD as an example – for me this wouldn’t tell the same story without the lens flair.  The lens flair tells say hot, it says sun beating down in a way that the rest of the image doesn’t.  Well that’s my opinion anyhow.  Feel free to comment if you agree or disagree with me.

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  • POTD 12 Mar 2009: Tilted 12 March 2009


    The Zaouia Zakkak minaret in the Medina, Sousse, Tunisia.

    Regular readers of this POTD know I like to try to give photography tips along with the photos.  This is one for beginners…

    Photographing tall thin subjects can be a little tricky.  The urge is to put them in the centre of the image but this can look odd as it leaves dead space on either side of the image.  One of my favourite tricks with such subjects is to locate them along the diagonal (as you can see here).  This gives a natural lead-in to the photo and makes the whole image more interesting.

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  • POTD 13 Mar 2009: Plays by… 13 March 2009


    Shakspere [Sic]

    Friday 13th… one of those days when I didn’t get much chance to work on the backlog or upload anything to Alamy.  So instead here is a photograph I took today of a book.  In case you are wondering yes there is a good reason for photographing this book.  See tomorrows POTD for the explanation.

    However what I want to know is who is “Leopold Shakspere” and why do so many of his plays have the same titles as William Shakespeare’s plays.

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  • POTD 14 Mar 2009: Brought to book 14 March 2009


    Haywire Cast

    This is why I was photographing books yesterday.  I wanted to do the cast photos for the Garrick’s next production, Haywire, as a set of book covers.

    Haywire is on at the Garrick 21-28th March.  It is a comedy about a second hand book seller (thus the book theme) and it is by Rising Damp writer, Eric Chapell.

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  • POTD 15 Mar 2009: The Star 15 March 2009


    The star of the show

    I didn’t really plan to take this photo.  Today Lifelines was performing a sketch at C3.  The parable of the Paparazzi – I was playing one of the paparazzi and I’d set my camera up such that it was guarenteed to flash the flash gun when I pressed the shutter.  I was more interesed in the stage effect rather than taking real photos.  However this shot (taken at the rehearsal) did come out.  A quick convert to sepia and I have a photo of the day!

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  • POTD 16 Mar 2009: Port el Kantaoui 16 March 2009


    The beach next to Port el Kantaoui harbour, Sousse, Tunisia. Port el Kantaoui, Tunisia.

    Wed 25th March 2009
    I’ve got a little behind with posting my POTD images.  I have still been uploading images to Alamy and taking photos on those days that I haven’t so I think I have images for every day.

    Monday 16th March 2009
    Still preparing Tunisian images for upload.  This is an image I really like – it’s the combination of late afternoon/early evening light, coloured umbrellas and a deserted beach that appeals to me.  Although I have sent it to Alamy it is not an image that I expect to be a natural seller… there is no ‘human interest’ in the image.  No people.

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  • POTD 17 Mar 2009: Pirates 17 March 2009


    A tourist pirate cruise ship leaves Port el Kantaoui harbour, Sousse, Tunisia.

    I’ve finished processing the Port el Kantaoui images today.  Among the images submitted to the libray was this image of a tourist pirate boat leaving harbour. 

    If I was doing a critique of this image, I was say the horizon shouldn’t be bang in the middle, the main subject (the boat) is too small in the frame.  The post bottom left draws the eye.  The walkway on the right needs to be more of an angle to be a true lead-in to the image.  I wouldn’t describe it as anything more than a snapshot really. But sometimes it is the snapshots that actually sell!

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  • POTD 18 Mar 2009: Mosaic 18 March 2009


    Mosaic of Ganymede being abducted by Zeus disguised as an eagle.

    From the Sousse Museum…. a bit of Greek mythology.  Not sure why Ganymede is carrying a hockystick though.

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  • POTD 19 Mar 2009: Haywire (1) 19 March 2009


    NULL

    It was production photos time at the Garrick tonight. 

    The play is Haywire, a comedy by Eric Chappell.  The play is on till Saturday 28th March.  Worth going to see.

    Photographically (non-photographers might want to skip this paragraph!) I thought I try a something different with how I take the photos this time.  Normally with my theatre photography I work in appature priority mode, with typically anthing between -1 and -2 stops of exposure compensation.  For this play however I realised that the lighting wasn’t going to change much so I decided to work in manual mode.  Zooming in on an actor I took took an exposure reading with the camera’s metering system and set the camera to that setting.  I made sure the exposure was fast enough for me to hand hold, set the appature to wide open and the selected a suitable ISO rating to ensure the image was correctly exposed.  After taking a couple of shots and checking the histogram on the back of the camera to ensure my exposures were correct.  I was able to leave the camera settings alone – only adjusting them again when the stage lighting changed.  In this case only at the scene changes (2 per act) and even then the change was minimal only requiring a half stop change.  The result – less blown out highlights and overall I think better exposed images.  It would be a lot harder to use this method in a play with lots of frequent light changes but I guess the more I work in manual mode for theatre work the quicker and more natural this way of working will become.

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  • POTD 20 Mar 2009: Haywire (2) 20 March 2009


    NULL

    Spent all day working on my Haywire photos from last night.  The new printer worked well and everything printed correctly first time!  My new processes for doing photo DVDs also worked well because not only did I process the images, do the prints, put together the ordering folder, upload the images to my website but I also managed to create the Photo DVD of the production too.  A busy day but a good one.

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  • POTD 21 Mar 2009: A somber submission 21 March 2009


    Tombstones / Stelae from Tophet commemorating children sacrificed to the god Tanit or Baal-Hammon.

    These stelae from Tunisa were used to commemerate the children who were sacrificed to either the god Tanit or Baal-Hammon in Tophet, Carthage.  Not really much else I can say about this photo.

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  • POTD 22 Mar 2009: Mothers Day 22 March 2009


    Marple, Cheshire, United Kingdom.

    This photo wasn’t taken today.  It was submitted to a library today.  But it was the photo I put on the Mother’s Day card I sent to my mum!

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  • POTD 23 Mar 2009: Ouch! 23 March 2009


    Robin Hood Statue, outside Nottingham Castle. Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, United Kingdom.

    Monday 23rd March 2009
    This evening I should have been leading a C3 Photography group meeting, all about selling images through photographic libraries.  As part of that I had planed to demo preparing and submitting an image to Alamy as part of the talk.  That image SHOULD have been my POTD.

    However…. I had a dentist appointment this morning and a routine filling (which had been causing me no pain at all before going to the dentist) left me with a severe stabing pain in the tooth that had been filled.  This resulted in me making two return trips to the dentist today (long story) and not able to lead or host the C3 photography meeting.  This meant no photo prepared as part of the talk and no upload to Alamy. 

    So my POTD is this image of the Robin Hood statue in Nottingham.  Why?  Because I was going to use this image in my talk (it is already on Alamy), and secondly the pain in my tooth felt just as though someone was driving Robin Hood’s metal arrow directly in to my tooth!

    Thursday 26th March 2009
    I’m posting this entry a few days late.  I’m pleased to be able to report that the tooth pain has all but gone now!

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  • POTD 24 Mar 2009: Spider-Man 24 March 2009


    Paperback book – The Amazing Spider-Man Essential Collection Volume 3.

    This photo was taken while preparing the Garrick display for Haywire.  I thought it was of sufficient quality technically to be uploaded to Alamy.  So I have done.

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  • POTD 25 Mar 2009: New Mills (1) 25 March 2009


    Derelict Torr Vale Mill in Sepia. New Mills, Derbyshire, United Kingdom.

    This image of the derelict Torr Vale Mill in New Mills didn’t look very good if full colour.  Converting it to sepia made it more interesting.  This isn’t a true monochromatic sepia but I’ve allowed a little bit of the the colour to leach through into the image (you can just see the green still in the ivy climbing up the walls).

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  • POTD 26 Mar 2009: New Mills (2) 26 March 2009


    Derelict Torr Vale Mill. New Mills, Derbyshire, United Kingdom.

    This the same mill I as in yesterday’s POTD but photographed from a different angle.  I haven’t converted this shot to sepia because I think it works in colour.  Mainly due to the fact that shooting from this angle gave me a blue sky behind the chimney.

    Also note in this photo that I have used the road/track as a lead-in the image.

    With hindsight I wonder if I should have framed the image with the chimney more to the left rather than in the middle of the frame?

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  • POTD 27 Mar 2009: New Mills (3) 27 March 2009


    Millennium Walkway along the River Goyt. New Mills, Derbyshire, United Kingdom.

    Another image from the New Mills collection – this is the Millennium Walkway as it sweeps round the River Goyt.  Composition wise notice how the hand rail forms an interesting lead in to the image.

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  • POTD 28 Mar 2009: New Mills (4) 28 March 2009


    Ruins of Rock Mills in sepia along side the River Goyt. New Mills, Derbyshire, United Kingdom.

    Last of my views of New Mills.  Something very other worldly about these ruins.  Enhanced by the duo-tone effect and the enhanced vignetting to draw the eye into the image.

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  • POTD 29 Mar 2009: Props of Prominance 29 March 2009


    Props table for C3 and Lifelines – Parables of Prominance. Heaviley, Stockport, Greater Manchester,

    This evening Lifelines and C3 performed a drama showcase at St Georges church in Stockport.  The title was “Parables of Prominance” – this photo is of the props table taken just before the start of the event.

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  • POTD 30 Mar 2009: Bill Poster 30 March 2009


    Remains of a protest poster on a wall. New Mills, Derbyshire, United Kingdom.

    Spotted the remains of this poster last year.  There is just something about it that makes me think it would make a good stock image.  Not entirely sure what it would be used for, but I uploaded it to Alamy today anyhow.  Stranger images have sold – believe me!

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  • POTD 31 Mar 2009: Post box 31 March 2009


    Red Royal Mail Postbox. Suitable for Christmas posting. Heaton Mersey, Stockport.

    Over recent months I’ve seen comments about Alamy to the effect that the one thing it doesn’t is another post box image!  Well it’s got another one.  This one.

    This image is however a little different.  When I processed it I had in mind to do a traditional “spot colour” effect (ie everything in black and which except one detail) instead I opted for a slightly different approach.  Black and white but with a spot colour effect for the red of the post box and another spot colour effect on the green holly that surrounds it.

    Hopefully that will make it stand out from the crowd.  I think it might appeal to anyone looking for an image to illustrate “last posting for Christmas”?

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