Month: May 2015

Friday Image No.53

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Olympus EM5, ISO200, 1/200" f/8.0
Olympus EM5, ISO200, 1/200″ f/8.0

I have just realised that I haven’t done very much photography over the past few months. Other than keeping a camera in my pocket I just haven’t been getting out. This isn’t very good as I’m running out of material to post on the blog. In fact this image was shot back in December 2013. I must get out more.

Hope you have a great weekend.

Lightroom Photo Merge Disappointment

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Nantes Cathedral, RX10 4 image vertical stitch
Nantes Cathedral, RX10 4 image vertical stitch. Click the image to see the enlargement.

If you have ever tried to produce a vertical stitch panorama you will know that it’s very difficult when there is a tall building involved. The problem of converging verticals is always present but at you tilt the camera at different angles for each frame in the stitch, the angle of convergence changes. This makes stitching everything together quite (actually very) difficult.

What I had wondered is if the new Lightroom Photo Merge stitching would be any better. Unfortunately it wasn’t.

My first attempt looked as though the image was bending out in the centre and then tilting over backwards. It’s then I had the idea to correct the vertical tilt on each image separately before trying to merge the images together. And that’s my disappointment. All the adjustments are ignored and you end up with exactly the same result. You therefore need to manually correct (or try to correct) the finished image.

This example isn’t too bad but with others there is a lot of distortion that is just too difficult to fix. Despite the distortion I do like the finished image. It’s also very large at 11″ x 31″ and very sharp.

Another Step Forward

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Steel Step. Sony RX10, f/5.0, ISO 80, 1/125"
Steel Step. Sony RX10, f/5.0, ISO 80, 1/125″

It’s a little over a week since I experienced the catastrophic failure of the Lenscraft website. At the time I was feeling quite desperate and thought that I had lost everything. Since then I have been able to restore the site and many of the problems that plagued me have been reduced or corrected by the installs.

There are still a few people having difficulty logging in with the “cookies issue” but this has been reduced dramatically.

I have been able to get the site security confirmed by S2 and you will now see their banner at the bottom of each page.

I managed to identify many broken links that were leaving people wondering what had happened to some content. I’m now in the process of fixing these.

There are though still issues to fix. One of these is that a lot of the tutorials I had on the original site have been lost, or at least I thought they had. Today I managed to locate some old copies of PDF tutorials but on reading these I realised that much of the information is now outdated. I’m therefore making it my mission over the next 12 months to develop and publish many more tutorials.

As for the picture, this is a steel step I spotted whilst in France a few weeks back. It’s quite surprising how simple everyday subjects can make for interesting photography.

Friday Image No. 52

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Jantes Foss Waterfall, Malham. Captured on an Olympus EM5, ISO200, 12-40mm lens (at 15mm), f/7.1, 12" exposure.
Jantes Foss Waterfall, Malham. Captured on an Olympus EM5, ISO200, 12-40mm lens (at 15mm), f/7.1, 12″ exposure.

I’m afraid I’m late again and having to post this week’s Friday image on a Saturday. I had intended to get everything read for yesterday but by the time I got home it was just too late. Hopefully this image is one that you like and which will make up for the delay.

The image was captured at Malham in the Yorkshire Dales (England) a few weeks back. The waterfall (which looks a little tropical) is called Janet’s Foss and is on the path up to Gordall Scar. I also thought it would be nice to show the starting image below prior to making any adjustments. I think this demonstrates how important post capture editing is to bring out the best in your photography.

Janets Foss starting image prior to adjustment.
Janets Foss starting image prior to adjustment.

Have a great weekend.



If you would like to know how I edited this image I have added it as a short free tutorial on my website (

Have fun

Back to Photography

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Canon G16 compact camera. It's great to have a quality pocket camera. You never know when opportunities present themselves.
Canon G16 compact camera. It’s great to have a quality pocket camera. You never know when opportunities present themselves.

Following the traumas of the weekend and my Lenscraft website crash, Monday saw me get back to photography. Well talking about photography at least. I was over at the South Manchester Photographic Society giving a presentation on Lightweight Photography and the benefits of using small cameras

The talk went well and seemed to generate a lot of interest from members. My usual test of picking out the Nikon D800 image from two A2 prints (the other was shot on an Olympus EM5) was as inconclusive as ever – no one has ever been able to pick the D800 with a valid reason. But what really stood out for me is the reviews of the prints after the talk. People were genuinely shocked at how good the image quality was from compact cameras when printed at A3, A3+ or even A2. People still don’t view high quality compact cameras as a serious camera with which to create high quality photography.

Providing the tools are good enough a craftsman can work with them. Once the tools achieve the right level, you can produce a masterpiece with them. Improving the tools doesn’t make the masterpiece any better, it just makes the tools easier to work with. Let’s not forget this.

Discount for Topaz Simplify

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Topaz Simplify
Topaz Simplify now with 30% off

I just received an email from Topaz advising they are running a discount promotion on their Simplify software until the end of May. If anyone is thinking of purchasing this please use the code “MAYSIMP” for a 30% discount. If you aren’t aware of Topaz Simplify here is the link to their product page.

Hooray – Lenscraft is Working

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I’m happy to report that the Lenscraft website is now back and running. It’s been a very stressful 48 hours and I want to say thank you for your patience. The only difficulty remaining is that I have lost all the changes and user registrations since Saturday 9th May. If you have registered on or since this date and you find that you’re not recognised you will need to re-register for the site. I do apologise for this but I have no way around the problem.

Hopefully I will soon be able to get back to doing some photography.