New Workshop Dates Announced

15 12 2011

Hey folks

For those of you that were interested in my next workshops, I have now confirmed the dates.

  • The next Seascape workshop is on Sat 11th Feb 2012 and Sun 12th Feb 2012 in Mona Vale
  • The next Off Camera Flash workshop is on Sun 5th Feb  in Alexandria.

More information on each workshop can be found in the tabs at the top of this blog.

Regards

Brent

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Photoshop Tutorial – Postprocessing The Deadvlei

9 12 2011

Here’s a real quick photoshop tutorial that shows how I post-processed this iconic image taken at the Deadvlei in Namibia.

Because this is such a surreal location I wanted to reflect this in the post processing.  Because of it’s iconic nature, there are plenty of wonderful natural-looking images of the Deadvlei, so I was trying to do something a bit more abstract in the post processing to put my own mark on it.

 

I hope you enjoy this short tutorial.

Brent





Photoshop Tutorial – Processing Death Valley

14 10 2011

 

I had a request for a tutorial on how I processed the image above.  So I have put together a short 4min tutorial on the processing of Death Valley Image.  Enjoy.

Brent

 

 





B&W Graphic Portrait Project

14 10 2011

Here’s a project that I have recently kicked off.  I want to put together a body of work of models shot in front of very graphical buildings or backgrounds.   All the work is black and white and have strong graphical elements in it.  Here’s a few shots that I did as a test/starter.

This image of Carly was shot in front of the cool chain-mail curtain hanging around the building on the corner of Bent St and O’Connell St in Sydney.  If you haven’t seen this chain mail, it’s pretty cool.

Same building as above, but just around the corner, I really loved the black and white contrast of the steps and column.  Both of these images printed up nicely in B&W.  I’m enjoying the challenge of “seeing in B&W” as I scout Sydney in with a whole new mission.  Both shots were taken with one light, an Einstein shooting into a Parabolic Light Modifier.

Today I went scouting and found a few more locations that have potential…. see what you think….

I saw this wall in a courtyard and loved the black and white graphic patterns…. There’s a ton of it lining the whole courtyard, so I figure I can play with big patterns (if the model is close to the wall), or small patterns if the wall is in the distance.

This second shot is of a huge sculpture outside another building.  What grabbed my attention was not only the textures on the steel sculpture, but also the way the light was beautifully graduated around the curved surface.  I’m thinking that could be a pretty cool abstract background.





When Is The Best Time To Shoot Landscape?

11 07 2011

So last week I was in Nevada and I went to check out Death Valley.  I scouted out Zabriske Point at Death Valley and planned the pano you see above.  It’s a pretty obvious shot of the location.  However as I was checking it out under the mid-day sun, I was asking myself when should I shoot it.   I think the conventional answer to that is to shoot it when the sun is low in the sky so that you get strong shadows and depth.  So that is what I did,  however I remembered back to a shot that Peter Eastway made in Death Valley, and the one thing thing that stuck in my mind was that Peter said he made the capture way after the sun went down when it was almost dark.

So I thought I would give it a try as well as making my capture in direct light.  For me, it was no contest, the light from the post-sunset capture was much more subtle, but still provided plenty of highlights and shadows.  I realised that the sky above the setting sun was acting like a big soft-box and throwing a much softer (but still directional) light onto the scene.

Not sure it will work in all situations, but it was definitely an interesting experiment for me.

Shot 40min after sunset

Shot just before the sun set





Playing About With Macro

16 06 2011

We have had about a week of pretty constant rain here in Sydney, so that drove me into the bowels of my photographic cupboard to dust of my macro lens.  I haven’t shot any macro for ages, but was reading an interesting article in Better Photography about a new utility from the folks that make Helicon Focus (the focus stacking software).  The new utility is called Helicon Remote, and it is very cool.   Helicon Remote fully remote controls your camera and automatically performs all of the focus bracketing that you need to do to create macro images with large depth-of-field.  Its a wonderful piece of software.  You really need to click on these images to view them at full size to appreciate the detail in the images.

The images that you see posted in this post were typically stacks of about 20 separate images that have been combined to create the high dof images shown here.

To create these images I used a single off camera flash.  I used a straight reflector on the studio light to create the reasonably directional shadow.s

Once the images were merged in Helicon Focus, I then just processed them using Nik Silver Effex Pro 2.  I’ve printed a couple of these out large and they look pretty cool.

What started off as a wet weather experiment has turned out pretty well for a first set of macro images in several years.

the Helicon Focus sofware can be licensed for $50/year and includes the Helicon Remote utility.  You can find the Helicon software here.





Off Camera Flash Workshop For Perth?

14 05 2011

Hey there Sand Gropers

I’m going to be visiting Perth for a few days of business in early June and was contemplating putting on a 1 day workshop for bringing models into your landscapes and shooting with Off Camera Flash.

I’ve been running this workshop over here now for about 8 months and it is very popular.  So if you would like to attend this workshop, just drop me an email at brentbat@gmail.com and express your interest.  If there is enough interest I will make it happen.

Not sure whether you guys just shoot “scapes” over there or what.  More information about the workshop can be found here.