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Showing posts from June, 2007

Chapter Thirteen

New buildings are shooting up in Leeds, UK, like blades of grass during a hot humid summer. I shot this architectural detail, attracted to the abstract graphic qualities in the shapes. Talking of building things, my dear friend and fellow photographer/writer, David Toyne has built a magnificent website which I can highly recommend for a visit. David has interviewed some of the leading lights in photography and his articles are interesting and informative. There's lots to discover on this beautifully constructed site and while you're there you can even do some shopping. Before you ask. I don't get commission. David and I have collaborated on projects in the past, sounds grand, but basically we've picked each others brains from time to time, as we each have different strengths. We're all set for future collaborations too and David is syndicating some of my writing for his site. So what are you waiting for. Click here and start discovering... Cheers, Paul


Minerals trapped in the rocks glow in the faint light penetrating the shadowy depths of a mine in Cornwall. The hot damp conditions must have been hell for the tin miners who worked these areas. We're so lucky to not have to endure such harsh and dangerous conditions in our modern lifestyles in the UK. Around the world others are far less fortunate. Cheers, Paul

RAW conversion software

I've noticed that my earlier articles on RAW processing software have received numerous visits, so it seems a good moment to update you with the latest news. Previously I did a comparison between RAW converters, Capture One, Nikon Capture, Raw Shooter 2006 and later added an article about Canon's own software, DPP. That was back in 2006 and things move on at an incredible speed, so here's the latest. After trying Adobe Lightroom for a few months, and loving it, I've now settled on Adobe Camera Raw as my preferred software. Lightroom is very pretty, has superb workflow and enables you to process thousands of images very quickly. However, I prefer CS3 because of the way it seamlessly and effortlessly integrates Adobe Bridge, Adobe Camera Raw and Photoshop. I love the new Adobe Bridge in CS3. The only downside is the cost (especially if you happen to live in Europe). If you've got the time and inclination it's cheaper to get a flight to New York and buy CS3 there t

Wimbledon fever

Annual Wimbledon fever is hitting the world. I've just completed a commission to photograph Wimbledon which is in the midst of a massive construction programme. This is a shot of court 2 as it is not seen generally by the public, empty and waiting. Even standing silent there's an atmosphere of gladiatorial expectation that hangs over the place. I think the wide angle distortion adds to the dynamism in the image, so I didn't 'correct' it. Cheers, Paul

Are you being creative?

My last article on creativity went down so well that it's given me inspiration to write another. I thought it might be handy to take a look at some of the attitudes and psychology that underlie creativity. Some people are naturally creative while others have to work at it but we can all be more creative. To be creative you've got to let your imagination work. Don't judge things and apply reason and rationale to everything. Just think, what if we did...? The driver here is curiosity and the wish to challenge the norm, challenge assumptions and opinions. You shouldn't make it hard work either. Enjoy the freedom. Be optimistic in your outlook. Any problem becomes a challenge rather than something negative. Creativity can be stimulated by actively seeking out problems and then getting your creative juices to flow so you can solve them and remember there is often more than one solution. The true creative doesn't just stop at the first answer. Try a different angle and se

To sit and stare

She sat on the cliffs hugging her knees and looking out to sea, deep in thought. It made me think of all the times I've just sat and stared out to sea thinking, sometimes happy and sometimes sad. That's life. We all need time to sit and stare. Till soon, Paul

Overcoming creative block and self doubt

Every photographer, for that matter every creative, I've ever met comes to a point when they're not happy with the work they're producing. The pendulum between creative highs and dry spells swings continuously. For some the cycle is long and the bouts are quite mild for others the feeling of doubt about their work can be a crushing experience which returns all to frequently. It's actually quite healthy to have these periods of doubt because it can often be the beginning of something new and interesting which takes you further than you thought possible. Creatives in the commercial world have to always perform and although they may agree looking back that they've had a few patches where their work was less good, they always seem to bounce back. A very few creative geniuses deliver such high quality work that their poorest attempts still surpass the rest of us. But I have never heard of anyone, from tortured soul of Van Gogh to the supreme showman and genius, Salvador