Multistorey Moods

Hey hey and ahoy!

I feel like I start almost every blog post with “it’s been ages since my last post”, and that’s mainly because it has indeed been ages since my last post.

August was a damn good month where I got an annoying little bug inside me urging me to get out and do something cool with the camera and other people.  There have been more wanderings around the City of London as well as a trip back home to Wales and some snaps at the top of the highest peaks in the Brecon Beacons but I’m not gonna talk about that today.

A couple of weeks ago I arranged what I hoped would be an awesome edgey shoot in an urban setting.  Nothing over the top, nothing fancy, just a chance for me to get out with the camera, try out some portrait techniques, think up some ideas, get inspiration from other urban shoots that I like, and work on interaction with other people.  I honestly feel like out of all of the different aspects of photography, working with models or just asking people to pose must be my biggest weakness.  When I take photographs of people I like them to just do what they do and I’ll capture the moment.  That’s how my wedding style goes and I think it works well.  In reality, there are going to be lots of times when I need to be giving direction, so this urban shoot was going to be a step towards getting to be where I want to be.

So it’s Monday evening and I’ve arranged to catch Megan in town at the old bus station with the aim of getting about the last hour of light before looking for artificial light in the form of whatever Milton Keynes can provide for free.  I’d been watching quite a few Behind the Scenes videos of this kind of thing, from America and Australia, and really wanted to test myself.  So I did.

We started at 1830 as the sun was getting ready to dip behind the train station’s office block but actually put ourselves in the shade.  The light was still surprisingly good and as I was using a nifty fifty (50mm prime lens) with the aperture pretty wide open, I could keep the ISO on or close to 100.

We lifted off and warmed up with some nice simple shots near some railings and a mirrored part of the building.  There was also a long clean grey wall that we used for some fancy shallow focus shots with Megan a short distance away, and also for a wide flat shot to work on the rule of thirds.  The nearby fire exit was metal and surprisingly clean so we tried a few snaps around there and the best ones definitely contained attitude.

 

There’s a good amount of graffiti in just one corner of the area that we used but that area happens to be a skate park and was fairly busy that evening.  We decided to skip it and maybe come back to it later.  For now though the light was definitely dropping quickly so we’d have to find some artificial light.  The multistorey car park was the obvious first option.

We took 2 cars and looped round and up and round and up until we got to an eerily quiet level and parked up.  We needed more attitude, so the hood came up for most of our shots, I was shooting with black and white in mind so really thinking hard about the light, the shadows and leading lines.  I wasn’t carrying any fancy equipment because I don’t have any.  Gordon Ramsey only needs one pan to make his magic, right?  We just took advantage of whatever was available to us there and then.  We also kept the posing really simple because a) I’m not great at directing and thinking of poses yet, and b) I’m not great at directing and thinking of poses yet.  Most of my direction was to myself just thinking about angles that work and directions of light.  Megan did the rest.  At one point I just asked Megan to simply listen out for my click and change her pose slightly each click whether it be a hip movement or a hair flick or a hand gesture or the direction of her eyes.  The results are below!

Megan was absolutely fab to work with, very professional and easy going at the same time.  If you’re a photographer and would like to work with her, just hunt her down on instagram @meganastasiaa and I’m sure you won’t regret it.  Tell her I sent you!  Megan is new to modeling and pushing herself towards a career in fitness but you can see here she can create some fantastic looks with the right photographer.  If you’re looking for a model for your sports brand, you don’t need to look any further.

With that, if you are looking for a photographer to help capture some cool images of your brand, or maybe you just fancy a funky photoshoot for yourself or want to get started in modeling, or a family portrait with a difference, or whatever it might be, get in touch and find out what my very decent rates are.  We can chuck some ideas around.  I have a smoke grenade that I really want to use soon!

Oh and while I remember, I have a new instagram handle  @iamtheinstadan

Be sure to say hi!

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Brides and Guides Pt2

Following on from Brides and guides Pt 1 here is Part 2!

A little reminder first:

In 2015 I was asked to cover a friend’s wedding which caused a little panic in my head.  The obvious thing to do was to get some practice in, but photography training courses are far from cheap and take a lot of time.  I’ve already mentioned in another blog that I don’t have that long term attention span, like most people these days.  We all want stuff quick quick quick, now now now, or yesterday would be even better.

I already had some skills from what I had taught myself along with some useful youtube tutorials and a bit of 1-2-1 tuition with Adrian Dewey the year before.  I just needed to see what I could do with some models in wedding dresses and suits in the right locations, and I most definitely would benefit from some incredibly useful direction and tips from the wedding photography pros – Kim Hawkins and Jodie Chapman.

Today’s photo blog includes a few of my favourite images from the afternoon once we’d had a decent lunch at a local pub in Buckinghamshire.  The venues this time were Bisham Abbey and All Saints Church, Bisham.

Something that really stands out was Jodie’s tip to try shooting in monochrome.  When shooting in RAW you can see everything in monochrome on the back of your camera but when processing later on in Lightroom you still have all of the file details in colour.  Genius.  I had no idea about this and would probably not know this by now either.

This is a much shorter blog post than usual where I’m letting the images do the talking, but I have to sign off by reminding/highlighting that you can see more images on my facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/dandavidsonphotography

My instagram, which you can follow for free is @dangleberrydan7

What to blog about next, huh?

I can be pretty useless at this but it’s not my fault.

Honest.

We need more hours in a day, and I need more energy and motivation during those hours.

It’s over a year since I set up this blog and if I’m totally honest with myself it should hold a lot more weight.  There is a hard drive here with “potential” written all over it, but I don’t think I’ve unlocked that yet. My photographic experiences go back to about 2010 I guess although every few months I learn something completely new and I feel like I’m a newbie all over again.  That new challenges really do help to keep things interesting when taking photos, but maybe I should try to keep on top of it on here too.  The main question for me is always “what do i talk about next?”.   I prefer the practical side of most things and that’s no different with photography.  In the early days a lot of what I learnt was through some great books by Scott Kelby and Bryan Peterson, both of whom just know how to speak my language.  Some textbooks are just ugh.  More recently I’m finding that reading doesn’t do a lot for me so my attention moves to Youtube.  Even then, if the tutorial video is over 20 minutes long then you can forget it.  I need bitesize.  Because of my need, I just kind of assume that everyone else operates in that way, so when it comes to blogging I find that I hit a point pretty quickly (often less than 250 words) where I just stop and tell myself to shut up and post some pics.  That’s unlikely to change, so what do I blog about next?  I have so many options!

Every time I get out and photograph something new, whether that be a cityscape, a wintery scene, a wedding, a baby shoot, some street art, street photography, whatever it may be, that short term excitement makes me want to cover the internet with what I’ve done so I go out and flood Facebook, instagram, flickr, viewbug and 500px with my favourite images, as well as sending a few through to other sites where I could potentially reach a bigger audience who would like some of my work on their wall.  The blog is the last thing that I even consider.

Currently in a non existant queue, just waiting to go on here are my rambles about the Gower Peninsula, the Brecon Beacons and Waterfall Country, Newcastle and the North East, Bristol, half of a wedding portfolio builder day, an entire actual factual wedding, 4 newborn/baby shoots, London, London, London, more London, Paris, London again, and London, more about phone photography, something about instagram, something about those who influence me, other photographers that I know and admire, Kent, Europe, and this list goes on.

If anyone reading this has any ideas or requests please do feel free to comment below or maybe contact me through my facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/dandavidsonphotography

Also feel free to follow me on instagram where my handle is @dangleberrydan7

Last but not least; this is a photo blog and I’ve not posted a photo tonight so here’s a little montage of something I spotted out on my wanderings.