Posts tagged ‘Photography’

July 12, 2011

Will your wedding be ‘unplugged’?


Have you looked around at an event lately and been surprised by the sea of cameras and camera phones that attendees have their noses stuck in? It seems to be a phenomenon that we can’t escape  – or is it . . .


I just read a thought-provoking blog post on It’s all about the benefits of asking your guests not to bring out their cameras during your wedding ceremony. The author, Ariel Meadow Stallings, takes you through quick look at the benefits from the perspectives of the guests, the happy couple, and even the professional photographer hired to document the wedding. You can read it all here: Unplugged Wedding

And here you’ll find Ariel’s HOW TO: Unplugged Wedding Templates

May 29, 2011

Tesla Magic

Yes, you’re right, it is disgraceful to have lived here for well over a year before ever venturing into the Sarjeant Gallery. We finally did yesterday.


We enjoyed all the exhibits but I was particularly taken with the exhibition of photographs from the Tesla Studios. The Sarjeant is currently displaying a selection of photographs from Mark Lampe’s years at the studio, spanning the 1930s to 1955. They show a variety of scenes and occasions, portraits, weddings, local events and even images commissioned by insurance companies.


I found myself enjoying the photographs on a couple of levels. I eagerly scanned them to find places I recognize or perhaps catch a glimpse of my grandparents all those years ago. But I also enjoyed the prints themselves. There is something not just appealing but compelling about them. Perhaps it’s the depth of contrast and the tonal range, or the absence of grain or noise. I’m not quite sure what to put it down to – not being a technician – but I thoroughly enjoyed them. So much, in fact, that I plan to go back to examine them again.


They say a picture paints a thousand words, which must be why I cannot adequately describe what I saw. The only possible solution is for you to get along to see for yourself. The Tesla Studios – the Mark Lampe Years exhibition runs until July 17th. Entry is free but donations are welcome.

April 5, 2011

All Made Up | Luminance photography – Wanganui

make up

I have found a useful post on make-up for photographs. It’s by New Zealand make-up artist Nikki Lovrich and is a good read for anyone who’d rather do their own than hire a pro.

You’ll find it here on Nikki’s blog – Make up for Photographs.

March 22, 2011

Raccoon eyes to model looks

I’m writing this post for those of you who use automatic cameras – either the sort that’s small enough to fit into a pocket or an SLR/DSLR that you only ever use on auto. And, when I refer to the ‘subject’ of the photograph I’m assuming that you’re photographing a person ;p.
There are a couple of problems that come to mind when I think about taking photographs outdoors in full sun. Firstly, if your subject is in full sun, especially in the middle of the day, you’re likely to see harsh shadows on the face. With the light coming from overhead, shadows are thrown under the eyes and nose. These are generally quite unflattering and won’t give you the results you might like. You may also find your sbuject squinting in the harsh sunlight, closing up their eyes and scrunching up their nose. So, here are a couple of tricks you can use to counter these problems.

little boy in full sun

Little lad photographed in full midday sun. Just look at those shadows!

The first is to get your subject to move into the shade. Look closely at the shade, though. Is it dappled? If so it too might be leaving odd looking shadows on people’s faces. Look for nice, even shade. Trees or building overhangs can be quite obliging. Once you’ve maneuovered your subject into a good patch of shade, try taking your shot. Be aware that if you there is a lot of light visible within the camera frame, behind or around your subject, the camera may under expose the skin leaving the person looking a bit dark. This is because, even though your camera may be fairly sophisticated, if used on auto it doesn’t know exactly what in the frame you want properly exposed. So, the software will take a sort of average of all the light that it detects within the frame and expose for that rather than specifically for your subject’s skin. You can get around this problem by framing very closely, filling the viewer with your subject’s face, or you can try using the flash on your camera to fill in the darker portions. Try both and see which result you prefer the look of.

Boy in the shade

Here he is in the shade of a tree.

The second way to avoid the harsh shadows that full sunlight can produce is simply to find the sun, and turn your subject’s back to it. You may find again that the camera is exposing for a lot of background light. The solutions, again, are to crop in  closer, or try adding some flash. The beauty of turning your subject’s back to the light, though, is that the light will catch in their hair giving a beautiful glow that is very attractive.

Little lad backlit by the sun

Here's the little lad backlit by the sun.

Both of these options should eliminate the problem of squinting by ensuring that your subject isn’t trying to stare into the sun. There are other techniques used by professionals to produce good results when photographing outside, but I hope these will prove useful to you. Feel free to comment below or ask further questions and I’ll be happy to reply.

– All these photos were taken on a Canon Ixus 700 compact camera.

September 15, 2010

A couple of commercial pieces

I knuckled down to some commercial work today and came away with some images that say all that they need to.

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