Belgium Bound

Very excited to be heading off on a 3-day shoot to Antwerp at the end of this week as I loved visiting it as part of my Rough Guides book commission last year to traverse the whole of Belgium. So, as a warm up to the trip I sifted through some of the images I shot last year to share on my blog.

Below, is the wonderful Rubenshuis in Antwerp

Rough guide to Belgium

Rough guide to Belgium

Rough guide to Belgium

Rough guide to Belgium

After navigating various train changes, the last being only once every 3hrs, and a 2.5km march along country lanes it was completely worth it to finally arrive at the very opulent Chateaux Attre, with its fading hand printed wall papers, and dark richly oil-painted portraits.

Rough Guides Begium

Rough Guides Begium

Rough Guides Begium

Rough Guides Begium

Rough Guides Begium

A relatively short distance away was the wonderfully laid out Zoo Pairi Daiza, Cambron, Brugelette. Fell in love with the giraffes…

Rough Guides Begium

Below: Pink Flamingos Bar, GhentRough Guide Belgium

Below: St Baafskathedraal, Ghent, BelgiumRough Guide Belgium

Below: Outside Portal details, Cathedrale Notre-Dame, Tournai, BelgiumRough Guides Begium

Below: The Burg, BrugesRough Guide Belgium

Below: Palace of Justice, Brussels, BelgiumRough Guides Begium

Below: Parc du Cinquantenaire, Brussels, BelgiumRough Guides Begium

Below: Cake shop, Brussels, BelgiumRough Guide Belgium

THIS WEEK…

Looking forward to my assignment in Antwerp hoping the autumn sun will shine to bring out the best of what the city offers – Art, local food, Cityscapes, interiors and their details.

#visitflanders #Belgium #Roughguides

 

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It’s all in the detail…

How does one capture the essence of a place?
Here is a second taster of my Insight City Guide to London… Borough market, Kew, Ham House, Hogarth house, Chelsea Physic Garden, Westminster Cathedral, Nelson’s Column, Hampton Court and Chiswick House. I just laugh at the three elderly ladies in Chelsea Physic Garden with the busk of a man’s head amongst the flowers. I often am trying to get low and shoot through layers to create atmosphere. Trying to remember to look for all the angles; the graphic shot from above, or the low down close up where you can almost smell those cakes! Feel free to write to me at the foot of any of my blogs.

Beyond my commissions I teach a few short courses at Morley College, London. Why not come along to one of my ‘Street Photography’ courses? Two Saturday workshop 21 & 28 Sept 2013, and better still a 6 week program, working to themes within Street photography,  3 hrs a week from 4 November 2013.

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Where for art thou in London?

What an opportunity I had thought… A commission to run all over London for three weeks photographing a new guide book of the City. Then I saw the length of the picture list! followed by the arrival of a heat wave… thus followed some very hard work. The schedule was tight, but 8,000 files later edited to 2,000, another deadline met. Now a month later it is very rewarding to sift through and edit a small selection I like most. Can you guess where any of them were taken?

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, LondonInsight City Guides, LondonInsight City Guides, LondonInsight City Guides, LondonInsight City Guides, LondonInsight City Guides, LondonInsight City Guides, LondonInsight City Guides, LondonInsight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Insight City Guides, London

Another wooly story…

Following close behind the book ‘500 Crochet blocks’ (Quintet Publishing, Autumn 2012)
I also was commissioned to photograph ‘HandKnitted Letters’ published earlier this year worldwide. In my photograph above I liked the twist on the old craft of hand knitting a cover but for the modern day Kindle.

Next stop was having fun and games trying to capture kids in whimsical brightly coloured hand knitted hats that took on various shapes and sizes…

The project was started back in October, and thereafter we battled with keeping toddlers and babies from frost bite on various very cold UK winter days – come March still little improvement. You know what they say about working with kids and dogs, well, add freezing temperatures and bitter winds… However, hurrah! Come April we completed it, and the result for us I must say is a very good looking book. ‘Fun Hats’, Search Press (UK) and ‘Whimsical Hats’, Barrons (USA) will be published Autumn 2013. Below, is a small selection of my favorite shots.

Cuba covered…

The Malecon, Havana, Cuba

I discovered this week that the image above that I photographed on the Malecon in Havana, Cuba has been bought for a cover of a book. I always get excited when I see an image of mine republished. Although I have shot both Time Out ‘Havana and the best of Cuba’ and ‘The Rough guide to Cuba’, this was a personal image I took on a much earlier trip, back in the day of ‘film’ photography. I once entered it into a Guardian photographic competition and it did make it to be featured on their website. See below a handful of some other favorite photographs I have taken in Cuba…

Afro Cuban Dance performance about to start in Havana Vieja

A taste of Istanbul…

Last month I had the great commission from Rough Guides to shoot their new Pocket guide to Istanbul. I was very excited to be going to photograph a city I had never been before. Arrived at my five star bunk bed in my very own hostel room, and off I went for 13 days traversing the different neighborhoods by antique red tram, the tunnel, electric T1 and ferries of various shapes, sizes and quality. Here are a handful of images to share the wonderful delights and food! of Istanbul: Click on thumbnails to view larger size.

Travel photography is seen by some as a glamours job… but the days are long, carrying
a tripod for hours, passing tourists sipping tea in their best holiday clothes. Then at the end of the day downloading, captioning, and editing into the night. But heck! I can not complain – the highs are getting lost in the back streets, eating the food you photograph, and the interesting encounters with other travelers on ferry crossings, hearing their tales of where they have just arrived from and their hopes to where they plan their travels will take them; swapping tips on good places to check out. Another late afternoon after getting my final shot of the day, I got to watch the sun set over the mosques and the Maiden’s tower from the Asian shore of Istanbul, whilst sipping my own sweet tea. Getting on a VERY local bus that would wind its way up through the hills to drop me off with a 20 minute vertical walk to a view of where the Bosphorus meets the Black Sea. As the sun was dropping fast zig zagging back down the Bosphorus missing and catching wrong ferries to eventually arrive back to my Hostel to edit with a nice cold bottle of beer… or two.

The best bit is once home home, working through all your images, smiling and appreciating the opportunity you where given, and sharing my pictures and stories with my son.

Chelsea Flower Show 2012

A great day had at the Chelsea Flower Show press day yesterday. The light may have been a bit flat and dull until late in the day but still the glowing plant and flower combinations were amazing. Also a great opportunity to catch up with lots of familiar faces that I have know from my time as a freelance Art Editor on Gardens’ World magazine and others very talented freelance writers. Many now doing some very interesting blogs.

I did spot the odd famous face but most of time I had my eye looking down the lens at a flower or two. Enjoyed a refreshing complimentary cocktail at The Caravan Clubs garden… very nice , very strong! Waited about an hour before sipping a champaign at the David Austin Stand. Could not go the whole day without a little indulgence.

Here are a few of my images taken on the day:

Chelsea Flower Show 2012… here I come!

Yippee! Another year I have the great honor to be going to the RHS Chelsea Flower show. Hopefully lots of good pictures to be taken for placing with my picture library client, GAP Photos. Last year was great weather, for a change. So let’s hope it will be a dry day this coming Monday.

Here are a few images I took last year

Image  Image

Image   Image

Travel photography workshop – Morley College, London

Just three days to go for my Travel Photography Workshop,  Morley college London. One day shooting, one day classroom reviewing of image, example book publisher picture lists, contracts, tips and advice from professional commissioned photography who has worked for Rough Guides, TimeOut City Guides, Conde Nast Traveller and Thames & Hudson City guides …
http://www.morleycollege.ac.uk/courses/digital_design_film_photography/1466-travel_photography_weekend

Travel Photography course at Morley College

Check out my two travel photography workshop that starts in less than a week. Enroll by wednesday 21 March to be sure of a place:
http://www.morleycollege.ac.uk/courses/digital_design_film_photography/1466-travel_photography_weekend

This two-day workshop covers three important aspects to becoming a successful travel photographer: The planning, capturing and crafting of your images. This encompasses choosing equipment, getting to know your camera, composition, evaluating the light, and mastering your techniques. Know the importance of research to identify when is the best time to go etc. The first day is photographing out on location. We will meet at the main door of the Tate Modern. The tutor will set briefs that reflect commissioned travel picture requests. Whilst photographing the tutor will give students tips and guidance, and 1-to-1 support with camera skills. Day two is classroom based covering the points mentioned above plus demonstrations on editing skills and use of Adobe Lightroom to review and edit your images. The Tutor shares her Top 10 Tips about being a Travel Photographer.

What you will learn on this course.

You will:

  • explore and learn about the photographic techniques of Travel photography
  • gain insight and practise of how to capture a ‘sense of a place’.
  • learn photo editing skills; what makes the picture special.
  • be able to use Adobe Lightroom’s basic skills for editing and work flow.
  • learn how to plan and research travel photography trips.
  • learn how a travel photo library works, and identify what images sell.

With discussions on:

  • Compositional skills
  • 10 top tips for a travel photographer.

I look forward to meeting some great new enthusiastic Photographers!!!