A home for the things I think are worthy of sharing. Will largely be photography based.

Events

UK Photoshow 2016 deals

Just been to Britain’s largest annual photography show in Birmingham NEC – these times called “UK Photoshow” but in the past “Focal”. I’ve been to it a few times over the years -usually just to geek out (hey I know good photography isn’t about the gear – but I enjoy that aspect anyway) but also occasionally to buy equipment.

There have been good deals to be had in the past – but I think less so in recent years. I’ve gone into the habit of photographing price lists to share them online so others can see if they want to go. This year though I’ve just been on the penultimate day – so maybe not so much of use – but what the hell.

I only photographed the price lists I saw that were easily photographed – a fair few only had prices on individual items – as I wasn’t buying – I didn’t go for them.

Past years:

2014
https://blog.dafyddowen.com/2014/03/02/photography-show-2014-prices/

2012
https://blog.dafyddowen.com/2012/03/06/focus-on-imaging-cameraworld-prices/
https://blog.dafyddowen.com/2012/03/06/focus-on-imaging-jacob-prices/

Sorry for the quality – taken on a phone.
I’m not one for taking my camera to photography shows.

Click on the picture to view larger, and then click on the “view in full size” bottom right to see the original.

http://www.photographyshow.com/


Gig: Rebecca Ferguson

Just a quick little set of yesterday’s shoot – Rebecca Ferguson performing her new album Lady Sings The Blues live for the first time. Venue was tiny – four of us photographers at the back row. Standard stuff – 3 songs, no flash, then out. Should have asked to stay – she sounded wonderful – just didn’t think as the place seemed full.

All Rights Reserved – no use without permission. Other images in the set can be licensed from Photoshot / Retna UK.


SWPP Convention + Trade Fair 2015 : London 14-18 Jan

Another year another SWPP trade fair…..

Hope you all had an enjoyable Christmas/Holidays/New Year etc etc. I’m not one for new years resolutions (I believe that if something is worth doing – it’s worth starting now) so will get straight into standard posting.

2015Conventionlogo

The SWPP or as it is now called “The Societies” Convention is a standard fixture in January.
SWPP was/is the Society for Wedding and Portrait Photographers.

The convention is part training event/convention part trade fair. I have only really gone to the trade fair part (which is free) and not the rest – training courses, portfolio reviews, etc which are paid.

For the free Trade Fair – registered by Sunday 10th January 2015 after this time it is £6.00.

Full Convention: 14-18 Jan 2015 (Wed-Sun)

Trade Fair: 16-18 Jan 2015 (Fri-Sun)

Hilton London Metropole, Edgware Road, London, W2 1JU

http://www.swpp.co.uk/convention/

I’d say the Trade fair is “Ok”. It has grown in recent years but isn’t anywhere close to the size of Focus on Imagine / “The Photography Show” held in Birmingham NEC. Still – there is a mix of things there – equipment manufacturers, training courses, accessory suppliers and so forth but a cut-down version.
I’d say that there is a significant percentage of album/print suppliers showing at the trade fair – but since the Society/show has it’s roots in wedding photography – it’s understandable. This just may not be of interest to some (such as myself).

There are some free demo/training courses at or around the trade fair – however these are most likely to be biased at software or equipment the stalls are trying to sell and may be overly busy. One year there was one free seminar area. This year Adobe seem to have a seminar room which sounds like it’s free. See the Free Demo links below.

 

Some additional info:

Trade Show Exhibitorshttp://www.swpp.co.uk/convention/exhibitors/
(Canon is there but no Nikon – as previous years)

Ticket/Registration form (Free and paid) : https://swpp.co.uk/secure/conventionform.htm

Free demos
Fri: http://www.swpp.co.uk/convention/exhibitors/Friday16th.htm
Sat: http://www.swpp.co.uk/convention/exhibitors/Saturday17th.htm
Sun: http://www.swpp.co.uk/convention/exhibitors/Sunday18th.htm

Paid Courses
Superclasses: http://www.swpp.co.uk/convention/2015/Superclass.htm
Masterclasses: http://www.swpp.co.uk/convention/2015/Masterclass.htm
Location Seminars: http://www.swpp.co.uk/convention/2015/Location.htm
Business School: http://www.swpp.co.uk/convention/2015/BusinessSchool.htm
I’m not sure what the difference is between a Superclass and Masterclass – it looks like duration – Superclass is half a day while Masterclass is an hour and a half.

 

 

 

 


Gig: Rise Against, Pennywise, Swimmers

Another gig – my first time at Brixton Academy photographing other than club nights.

Nice big pit but a tad on the cold side of things. Happy I managed to get a shot of Rise Against front man going into the crowd!

Swimmers

Pennywise

Lighting was a bit dark and the singer’s cap didn’t help

Rise Against

All Rights reserved – please no downloading, copying, hot-linking without permission.

Available for licensing on www.photoshot.com

 

 


Modern Panic V

Once again it’s that time of year where the excellent Modern Panic art exhibition is on.
As per before – I had the pleasure to attend the opening event and take photos there.
I have a few friends that are exhibitors there.

It’s a great show and I would highly advise taking a look. As well as the original art – some exhibitors have prints on sale. If I had a big house I’d buy so much from this show!

 

OPEN TO PUBLIC:
SAT 8TH – SUN 16TH NOV 2014
11am – 7pm | £3 Admission | Support The Arts

Apiary Studios, Hackney Road
458 Hackney Road, E2 9EG London, United Kingdom

Modern Panic links:

https://www.facebook.com/events/509503689152410/
http://www.guerrillazoo.com/modern-panic-5.html
https://twitter.com/guerrillazoo #ModernPanic

 

Links of some exhibitor friends:

Anne ‘Blondie’ Bengard
https://www.facebook.com/anneblondiebengard
http://www.anneblondiebengard.com/

Iain MacArthur
https://www.facebook.com/IainMcarthur
http://www.iainmacarthur.com/

Rococo Wonderland
http://www.rococowonderland.com/

Karina Akopyn
https://www.facebook.com/karina.akopyan.artist
http://www.karina-akopyan.com/

Michelle Mildenhall
https://www.facebook.com/latexartwork
http://www.michellemildenhall.co.uk/

 

Also includes some photos of MisSa Blue’s performance

https://www.facebook.com/missablue

 

 

 

 


New Central London Camera Shop – Park Cameras

Park Cameras London

Ok – so I’ve not had cause to go to central London much, even though I’ve moved office to Farringdon which technically is fairly central. But I mean to shop etc.

Also not seen this on any photography blogs – which I read plenty of.

Anyway – Seems that Park Cameras have opened a new shop in Central London. It’s actually been there since December! Shall have to pay a visit when I’m next in town.

http://www.parkcameras.com/article/526/Park-Cameras—London-Store.html

Park Cameras London

 

Park Cameras
53-54 Rathbone Place
LONDON
W1T 1JR

Monday: 10.00am – 6.30pm
Tuesday: 10.00am – 6.30pm
Wednesday: 10.00am – 6.30pm
Thursday: 10.00am – 7.30pm
Friday: 10.00am – 6.30pm
Saturday: 10.00am – 6.30pm
Sunday: 12.00pm – 5.30pm

I only noticed when checking out the shops that Manfrotto would have their event days at.

http://www.manfrotto.co.uk/manfrottotakeover

 

 


Photography Show 2014 – Prices

Calumet Nikon lenses

Some prices from The Photography Show – 2014.

Only had the phone to photograph these so resolution is a bit off.

In past years I’ve heard that prices are negotiable – so try to haggle 😉

On the whole I was disappointed with the deals so only bought a memory card and some printer paper samples.

CLICK ON IMAGE FOR LARGER VIEW

Cameraworld

Cameraworld Sigma Cameraworks Sigma Cameraworld Nikon CameraWorld Canon Cameraworld Canon

Calumet

(Sorry – only got the Nikon lens prices)

Calumet Nikon lenses

London Camera Exchange

London Camera Exchange - Canon Prices London Camera Exchange - Nikon - Prices London Camera Exchange - Sigma Prices

Example of the woeful savings:

On the Nikon 70-200 2.8 VR ii:
Calumet – £6
Cameraworld – £0
LCE – £0


Burning Man 2013

With the sudden excitement of 2014 Burning Man tickets becoming available – I’ve remembered that I’ve STILL not done a public Burning Man Gallery. I went last year (2013) and had a press pass so I could publicly share my photography 🙂

I made business cards so that I could give them to all I photograph so I could give HighRes photos away as a form of gifting. As such these and many more have been up in a private gallery, but I thought it about time I made some public!

I took my D800, a couple of lenses and a speedlight. I was intending to do a mini studio at dusk – however our camp (Cabana Club) had it’s camp meals around that time and so I missed the opportunity other than a few in the camp! I’m not going again this year – but hopefully soon – and then I think I may make a special effort e.g. ask someone to keep food aside for me.

Dust wise – I bought a cheap waterproof housing – kind of a bag – but realised that to put the camera in I would need to take the lens off! SO not the best in a dust storm. So I just took the camera out as it was and put it in a bag if there was a particularly bad dust storm. D800 is weather sealed anyway. Also bought a can of compressed air before getting to the Playa. Anyway – this isn’t supposed to be a blog post about photography on the Playa – but instead one to share photos – so here are my favourites.

Click to view full picture


Photo Ireland Festival

In my new day job (Still IT within a photography related business) I sometimes have E-mails about photography events coming across my Inbox. Although I subscribe to lots of other photography related blogs – not many seem to cover such events – so I think I’ll start to post some of these here. I don’t have any involvement in them – just think it’s nice to share 🙂

First up :

PhotoIreland Festival 2014

When : 01-31 July 2014

Where: Ireland …. well obviously 😉 …. Dublin I think

Web : http://photoireland.org/

Twitter : @PhotoIreland

Photo Ireland Festival

It seems to be a series of talks, exhibitions, competitions and such like throught July. See their website for mroe details.


World Zombie Day : London : 2013

Yesterday was World Zombie Day – a fun flashmob event that happens across the world – I went along to the London walk for the second time.
I’d definately advise going – it’s a whole load of fun.
http://worldzombieday.co.uk

My Photos:


GoPro London to Brighton Video

Stepper Bike UK Do London to Brighton - clapham

Here’s a little video that friends and I recorded last June during the London to Brighton Bike ride.

My friend Zoe is the main person behind the UK distribution of Stepper bikes: http://www.3gstepperbike.co.uk. She’d got a team of friends together to do the charity ride on them and asked me if I could do some photography for them. I thought we could do better than just photography – why not video it using the GoPro’s we have at work!

So armed with 6 GoPros and various attachments we kitted out their bikes and one helmet to record it. Needless to say we have HOURS of footage. I’ve only recently found time (and remembered!) to put something together. The internet being what it is with a short attention span I wanted the video to be limited to 3-5 minutes. So I found a suitable song and put a few clips together. Shame it’s so short but it meant only one (long) evening for me.

[vimeo http://vimeo.com/63502580]

After producing this someone mentioned that Premiere Pro has a stabilising effect inbuilt – if only I’d known! Don’t fancy re-doing it as I’d have to upload separately and Vimeo free account will only allow one HD video a week.

And a few photos.


Materials Council – Super Brands, London Design Festival

Materials Council

Yesterday I did a job for Brad and Ian at Materials Council and Architronic at their stand at the Super Brands London exhibition – part of the London Design Festival. It involved photographing their stand and the surrounding area in the morning before the public turned up and then coming back in the evening for the opening reception.

 

Photography geekyness wise it’s not overly difficult however there were some areas to keep an eye on. The exhibition is called “Whiter than White” where the Materials Council is displaying some of its white materials. So the areas to keep an eye out are :

White Balance – With mixed lighting (white light panels above, and more orange Tungsten not far away) then white balance is something to keep a close eye on, especially since the title of the display has the word “White” in it – wouldn’t be great if everything was orange! The obvious get-out for this is to shoot RAW and choose the White Balance later in post production – so this is what I did.

Exposure – When you get a viewfinder full of white – and if on some camera automated exposure mode there is the danger that the camera will under expose the white to get it averaged out for middle gray. There are different techniques to counter this – and I used a mix depending on  the scenario. When steadily photographing the white material – going up and down the display I switched the camera to manual and set the exposure myself. The lighting on the display was fairly even so this was made possible. At other times when moving around photographing people around the display etc – I generally used Aperture Priority set to 2.8 for nice shallow depth of field, but set the camera to exposure compensation of +1/3. This could on occasion be not enough, or too much – but since I was shooting RAW this gives more leave-way to change the exposure later on.

With post production the trick is to get the material to be white, but not blow-out the details. Also while shooting and editing the old term of “expose to the right” applies i.e. exposing so that the historgram sides to the right – more white, but without over exposing.  The point of this is that making things darker in photoshop etc tends to be better than making them lighter – as noise etc becomes more evident then.

Here’s a quick selection of the opening night. Got in rather late but edited a quick few for their newsletter today.

if you’re wandering about the Gin – then they were the sponsors of the Architronic areas (presentation area turned bar for the reception)

Materials Council Coverage of the opening day.

I took a few pictures of some of the areas – and will upload a couple of pictures later on.

In collaboration with Super Brands London – the Tent London show is going on at the same time in another part of the venue – The Old Truman Brewery in Brick Lane. I was quite surprised to see this as it was upstairs and a LOT bigger than I expected – it was huge.  As far as I can tell – Super Brands was for the larger more established designer companies, and then Tent was for the smaller companies – either starting out or still relatively small scale.

Unfortunately – as I was working I didn’t really have the time to photograph them but there’s plenty to see.

If you’re into interior or furniture/fittings design and free over the weekend – I highly suggest going. Mind you – open House London is also on this weekend. Entrance for Super Brands/Tent London is £8 in advance or £10 on the door for adults. Less for kids etc.


Terrence Higgins Trust – Walk for Life 2012

On Sunday I did my usual stint of charity work – covered the Terrence Higgins Trust sponsored walk- the walk for life.

A few years ago I thought it would be nice to do something worth-while with my photography and asked around so see if there’s anything I could do. At the time my friend Michael (a.k.a. Funtime Mikey) worked for an AIDS and HIV charity called Crusaid who organised the Walk for Life charity event and he put me in touch with it’s organisers. Since then I’ve covered it a few times (My sieve of a memory has lost count) and since then Crusaid merged with Terrence Higgins Trust.

The walk starts and ends at Potters Field Park – between Tower Bridge and the Greater London Authority building – a great location.

Had celebs Sugar Dandies and Sarah Cawood starting the race.

In the end there were performances from Louise Dearman, 4 Corners and Freddie impersonator.

People always dress up and there’s a great vibe lending itself to some fun photos. Thankfully didn’t rain but it was a bit on the cold side and was overcast. Means no nice blue skies for photos alas. Having done these before I’ve learnt that ins such conditions a pop of flash is handy to illuminate faces and some exposure compensation is sometimes needed as the light overcast sky can trick camera metering if you use it (which I do).

As I currently have more free time – may be worth looking for other such charities/events that could do with some photography.

EDIT: Here’s a link to the THT set on Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10150909225967332.433512.6316017331&type=1

Here’s a very abridged gallery of photos:


Focus on Imaging 2012 – preview

Focus on Imaging 2012 started today.

This is the UK’s biggest Photography trade show/fair. It’s at Birmingham NEC and started today (Sunday 4th) and goes on until Wednesday (7th March). Practically all the main photography manufacturers have a stall there and also a lot of other interesting stalls also – retailers, magazines, smaller manufacturers, trade agencies, societies, Universities etc. If you’re a big photography fan then it’s a must at least once – especially if considering buying some equipment.

Here’s a list of exhibitors.

But as well as stalls trying to sell you stuff there are other things of interest – here’s the show’s What’s On page.

Talks, demo’s, workshops etc. Unlike other trade fair which have separate paid for seminars – these talks are fairly small, but also free. I’ve been to a few in the past e.g. on Nikon Speedlights and they certainly can still be interesting. Here’s a list of all the talks.

Here’s the Floorplan PDF.

With a quick preview picture:

 

Deals : usually there are some good deals to be had at the show and this is why I’m going this year – I’m hoping to buy a Full Frame lens cheaply before I hopefully upgrade to the Nikon D800. I will try to blog prices here – but as I’m only going on Tuesday – it may be a bit late for most I’m afraid. Should still be interesting though. Although – I have seen someone mention that they bought a Nikon 16-35 from the Jacobs stall for £850 – that’s their normal shop price! Although purchasing a lens is my main purpose for going it has been more than a year since I last went – so it should be an interesting day out anyway.

Other things I’m hoping to try/buy:

  • Try a production D800 (already tried a demo one)
  • Take some photos with my own card on both D800 and D700 to compare
  • Look at Computer monitors – I’m thinking of buying a new 24″ monitor
  • Try some Wacom tablets
  • Maybe buy some 1.72m wide Colorama backdrop paper.
  • And generally just geek out 😉

 


Chap Olympiad 2011

Been very busy of late, both social and work – part if this has been shoots and a holiday on a canal boat with my University friends (photos/videos to follow). However just before the little holiday I went to the Chap Olympiad event. I’ve been a couple of times before and there’s at least one set of photos on my main photography site. I finished editing the photos last night and have put them up on Facebook for now – may put best of the best on main site but thought I’d try a Facebook link here.

I don’t have a facebook page/group/thing as I think sites like MySpace etc come and go and prefer to direct most internet traffic to main sites or something I can control like this blog. However I wanted to share the photos with friends and those who went – so have made the gallery publicly visible – I hope you can see it (please let me know if it doesn’t work).

My Chap Olympiad 2011 photos

But here are a few favourites.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I would definitely suggest going to Chap Olympics if you’re into such fun dress up events.  You can sign up to news on their website : Chap Olympiad. It’s all good light-hearted fun. Everybody dresses up and you can compete in the Olympiad if you turn up earlyish (I think it usually opens 12 and you can register before 1pm). Events have included Cucumber Sandwich Discus, 100 yard saunter, bicycle  and umbrella jousting. The event is organised by the fine people at The Chap Magazine – also well worth a look.

 


London Pride

As per my last Blog post – on Saturday I was taking photos for Terrence Higgins Trust at London Pride. I went to meet them at the starting point for about 12. No float/bus (seems they cost a lot – and this after all is a charity) but they did have a fair few staff/supporters there and a small but great marching band, plus semi-clad good looking guys.

There was no real brief really – I think they were happy just to get anything and everything – concentrating mostly on the charity but also on other aspects of the march.

Having never been to a Pride march before (not being gay they never seemed a high priority for me) I wasn’t sure what to expect. At the starting point it seemed all quite relaxed – you could walk around the different floats and mingle with everybody etc.  So come 1pm when it started – I was expecting the same. After an initial filtering system so that the organise could intersperse the floats/buses with procession walkers (intially all the people were in one lane and all the floats in another) we started walking down Portland place into central London. After a while I noticed that there was crowd fencing either side of us with a little crowd. But as we went further into the middle of town the crowds became bigger and bigger and it dawned on me – I wasn’t just covering part of the march – I was actually IN a march, separate from the crowd. 🙂 Not what I was expecting but fun.

There were a few floats with DJs and sounds systems etc – but in my opinion our modest marching band (1 Tuba, 2 trumpets, 2 drums, 1 trombone and 1 saxophone) was much better. Added that extra spirit to it missing from just playing a record or CD. They’s also done their homework and played a few “gay anthems” – you know YMCA and the like – although that was the cheesiest of them, others were better.

As I had stuff to prepare for Saturday night and an earlyish start for that too (well 8) I didn’t hang around for the post march entertainment i.e. gig in Trafalgar Square and then bars and clubs in and around Soho. Maybe next time.

Took almost a thousand photos on the day !! But here’s just a few generally un-edited.