Last weekend I ventured up into the Peak District, where not surprisingly I’m having far more luck photographically. I say not surprisingly because I’m visiting the area far more frequently. I think it was Samuel Goldwyn who once said, “the harder I work, the luckier I get”. Although I know the golfer Lee Travino once said it when accused of winning by luck.
Anyway, I have been visiting a few times each month and I’m starting to have more opportunities to take shots I like. The one above was shot from Bamford Edge which is around 50 minutes’ drive from my house and about 15 minutes’ walk. It was near to sunset and I didn’t expect much because there was a log of fog and low cloud swirling around. Then I noticed the low sun hitting this distant hill and lighting it up with a warm glow. If you look carefully you can also see faint colour around the edge of the cloud above it.
I used my longest lens on the Fuji X-T2 to isolate the area. I also used a 0.9 Kase Soft Graduated filter on the sky. Without the filter, I found the foreground trees which were already in shadow, were becoming too dark. What really surprised me was that in all the fog and cloud, this event lasted about 10 minutes and I managed lots of shots.
WOW! Frequency Equalizer
The image you see above is probably the one I like best, but I used another in my latest YouTube video. Previously I shared a video of a product called Mask Equalizer. I said at the time that I had purchased it bundled with another product and would reveal that in another video. That product was WOW! Frequency Equalizer and this is the video, where I demonstrate some of its power.
I hope you like the video and image and have a great weekend.
Let me start today’s post by wishing you a Happy New Year. Over the holiday period I needed to produce my weekly video but didn’t have a lot of time available. That’s when one of my friends shared the idea of doing a photo retrospective. I used this to pick my favourite 12 photos from 2018 and display them set to music. If you would like to see the video (which includes the above image) you can find it on my Lenscraft website at (https://lenscraft.co.uk/photography-blog/photo-retrospective-2018/).
I’m also aware that many of the people reading my blog like to know more about the equipment I use to capture my settings. This gave me the idea of also producing a free PDF eBook of the images together with basic information about the camera, settings and filters. If you would like a copy, you can download it (free) from my Lenscraft shop (https://lenscraft.co.uk/lenscraft-store-2/books-courses-guides/).
I produced the image you see here using multiple shots that I stitched together before processing. It’s of the Tongariro Alpine Crossing in New Zealand (North Island) and is about half way across the crossing. I hope you like it together with the other images in the retrospective.
This week’s Friday Image comes from the Peak District. Now although I’ve recently been showing more images from the Peak District, it’s not an area of the UK that I’ve had much success with. I don’t know why because there are some spectacular locations, but the weather has usually thwarted me.
For a long time, I even avoiding visiting the area, thinking it was inferior to the Lake District where I shoot a lot. This is rather a shame though as it takes me at least 1.5 hours to travel to the Lakes whilst the Peak District is literally on my doorstep.
To shoot the location above, it was only a 50-minute drive from my house and a 5-minute walk across a field. Everything feels just that bit more accessible and I’m determined to shoot there much more in 2019.
I probably won’t be sharing a Friday Image next week because of the Christmas holidays and having visitors. But then again, you never know.
If you celebrate Christmas, I hope you have a great one and I’ll be back in 2019.
Following my final post and Friday Image last week, a few
people contacted me and a few more left comments. It appears people like to receive
the Friday image and I want to continue sending these from my Lenscraft website.
It sounds easy, but it isn’t.
Following lots of head scratching, my wife came up with the obvious question. “Why don’t you keep posting the Friday image on your Blog andthe tutorials on your website?”
Hmmm! Pause to consider the obvious.
And so, I’ve had a rethink. I will continue to publish theFriday Image here. For anyone who want to understand more about the editing, youcan visit my Lenscraft website. The only downside is that the blog may have advertisingappear from time to time as I won’t be paying to stop WordPress.com fromdisplaying them.
I hope this arrangement works for those of you who still
want to see my work.
As for this image, I shot it last Saturday (8thDecember 2018). It’s from Higger Tor in the UK Peak District on a dreadful morning that had amazing light. To give some idea of the conditions, it was raining very hard and incredibly windy. I stood my tripod up (Manfrotto 055 carbon fibre) and it blew over and along the ground. I was blown over several times and was even blown over from a kneeling position. I took most of the shots whilst sat or lying down. I couldn’t use filters because of the rain, so this is an exposure blended image. I processed it using Photoshop Frequency Separation (see the tutorial and video on Lenscraft).
Yesterday I received an email that’s made me question this
For a long time, I have run a separate blog and website. Originally because the website hosting company I used was useless; having a separateblog allowed me to tell people when the website was down. Today my hostingcompany is excellent, the website stable (fingers crossed) and having a separateblog seems to confuse people. But what’s pushed me into this decision is thenews that features I use are no longer available. To access these features, Ineed to upgrade to another plan that’s almost 3 times the price.
And so, I’ve made my decision. This will be the final blog post of this site. I will though keep the site online as there’s a lot of material gone into it over the years.
Today I was going to share an image of the Franz Joseph Glacier. But having published two mountain images in the past two weeks I decided I wanted a change. Looking through my recent collection of images from New Zealand I picked this image from Punakaiki with its famous pancake rocks.
I just finished reprocessing it and I’m very happy with the results. When I say reprocessing, it’s because this is my second attempt at the image. The reason I decided to do this is that I just finished watching a video on YouTube from Glyn Dewis in which he discusses Frequency Separation. Glyn’s a brilliant portrait photographer and if you want to view the video, you’ll find it on his channel here.
My version of frequency separation is a little more complex and uses a Photoshop Extension Panel called “Wow! Frequency Equalizer Pro”.Interestingly I just reviewed their Masking Panel on my YouTube Channel the other day. If you want to simplify Luminosity Masking, you should watch my video.
I captured the image using a Fuji X-T2 and Fuji 10-24mm at16mm. The camera was tripod mounted and I used a 3 stop Kase Soft ND Grad filter angled over the sky and sea.
I hope you like the image and have a great weekend.
Last week I shared the first image from my New Zealand trip.It was a mountain scene from a trek I did along the Hooker Valley. For today’s Fridayimage I want to share another scene from the same trail. In all honesty, Icould probably share 100 images from that trail. Now that I’m semi recoveredfrom the journey, I’m seeing lots of shots I took that I really like.
This one in particular took me by surprise as I don’t recall
taking it. I don’t know about you, but I tend to have a very good memory for
each of the shot I take, even over a couple of years. I can’t usually recall
them with crystal clarity or recognise them when I see them. That’s not the
case with this one so I suspect it was a grab shot.
It’s taken using the Fuji X-T2 and a 55-200mm lens. The lens is set to 55mm and the camera was handheld. With the aperture at f/11.0 and using ISO200, I achieved a shutter speed of 1/680” which is more than fast enough to handhold. I didn’t use any filters either and this isn’t a multiple exposure, just a single RAW file.
In terms of post-capture processing, I did most of the work in Photoshop using curves and luminosity masks. I did take the image into On1Photo RAW 2019 (if you haven’t seen my review, here’s a link) but then applied the adjustments through a luminosity mask to target the mid tones. To finish I applied dodging and burning to lighten the cloud and darken the rocks in the bottom third of the frame.
I hope you like the photo and have a great weekend.