Thursday 29 January 2009

Little miracle

Welcome to the world baby Cathal! Cathal is the latest addition to this beautiful family of three boys. It was my immense pleasure to meet this little guy, the very day he turned two weeks old. I wanted to put up every shot I took of him, however I will restrain myself here...and flood flickr instead :)

These shots are Straight out of the camera. Used natural light from a window and a reflector for fill. A nifty trick I picked up to use a hot-water bottle just beneath the blanket, worked a treat for keeping the little fella happy.

Monday 26 January 2009

Mornin Neighbour!

Check out what we found in the garden...
Hey, this thing makes nuts! better bring it home to the misses...Now how's this gonna work...

nope... I could...
not that way...oh ya, now I have it!
Ok... one nut left...sod the misses... I'm going in!so it seems the stresses of moving house pays off, with cute and fuzzy new neighbours! :)
I'm really enjoying all the wildlife here in this little cottage by the Turlough in Craughwell. The birds are entertaining too and I'm filling the feeder every couple of days. Think Bushy here is helping them with that. These images are a bit noisy, bit early in the morning for me, ISO was at 1600! What the *! I'll be ready next time ;)

Friday 23 January 2009

I've been nominated!

Wooohoo! I'm sooo thrilled today to discover my blog has been nominated for the prestigious Irish Blog Awards! Thank you for nominating me. Lets keep our fingers crossed and I might even win something :D. Thank you guys soo much for following my blog, it gives me such a thrill to see the number of readers I get... I'll be smiling all day now yippee!!
Click on the image to visit the Irish blog awards site and see all the great blogs nominated this year...including me :D

Friday 16 January 2009

Surfing in Sligo

A daring activity in the West of Ireland, surfing has become very popular in the last few years. I feel cold just looking at them, although it was fairly cold standing around taking pictures too. The worst thing is in cold weather you can't wear a glove on your trigger hand, so by the time you get back to the car and blast the heater they've turned purple and verging on frostbite. I had the privilege of the use of a friends' canon 70-200 IS lens for a bit and took full advantage of the chance. Thanks Austin! Anyway it was lots of fun and great to so many people out surfing right here on our door step. Certainly never thought I'd ever see it here, back when I used to watch Sam catching a wave on Home and Away!

Sunday 11 January 2009

To dance or not to dance

Who doesn't love to dance? It's got to be the best way to combine socialising with learning something new and keeping fit . I think Ireland is getting more into recreations outside of just drinking in the local and it's great. The influx of other nationalities here has really helped grow the options available to us. Just last night at a salsa party I learned common dances from Africa(Kazomba) and Brazil (Samba, Forro and Lambada) as well as seeing performances of Flamenco from Spain and a new form of Jive called Modern Jive or Ceroc as they call it in New Zealand. And all this in our little city of Galway in the west of Ireland. I now only have the problem of deciding when to dance and when to take pictures of dance...I just love both soo much it's a very tough decision ;)

As a photographer, a nightclub is a difficult lighting situation. I think it's really important to capture the feel of the club, so I like to keep the light as real as possible. I've found the best way to do this is to use a flash to freeze your subject and use a slow shutter speed to take in the ambient light, this is known as dragging the shutter.
I use auto focus, but select a point of focus first this allows me catch the action as it happens. It's a real benefit knowing the dance and the music as I can tell when the best opportunities for capturing a pose are coming and can be ready.

Settings on my Canon EOS 350D for the above shot were
Lens: 17-55mm 2.8
F-stop: 2.8
Exposure time: 1/30sec.
ISO: 800
Focal length: 17mm
White balance: Auto
Focus: Auto

Friday 9 January 2009

What would you do?

Work for free?!
I've been following the strobist blog for some time now, but this article somehow got by me and I just noticed it today while browsing there posts. You need to read the full article and you'll see the concept can be applied to many professions, not just photography.
It has really got me thinking though. I have done plenty of work for free, probably too much at this stage some might say, but not like this. And as I've been thinking of starting a personal photography project this year, this has given me lots of ideas on what to do it on.
How great would it be to get enough practice doing animal portraits to perfect your style while building your portfolio and helping a shelter find homes for tons of animals! All for the sake of mutual benefit, without the constraints put on your creativity of a paid job.

It's basically about going after your goals by offering your services to do the work for free(initially). I'm going to have a think about this and put a plan into action. Any ideas? What would you do?

"Four reasons to consider working for free" by

Tuesday 6 January 2009

Alice in wonderland

Delighted with the bright frosty morning yesterday, Alice and I took a walk around the garden. A great way to start the year, camera in hand. These were edited in Lightroom and assembled using Claire's storeyboard template in Photoshop.

Storyboard templates with thanks to gingerpixel.


Happy New Year everyone! I'm looking forward to getting the camera out more this year. Getting the creative juices flowing and posting more to this blog.
This is a reflection that caught my eye over the Christmas holidays. I like the flow and tones of it and it's a bit different to what I usually do. Especially after the 'Portrait season' which November and December is becoming now known for me. Not much editing to this one. Just some saturation, contrast and sharpening in Lightroom, an application I'm becoming more and more fond of. I find it has really sped up my work flow this year, so if you haven't tried it yet, get stuck in.