Oxford School of Photography

insights into photography

Daily Archives: May 30, 2012

London Festival of Photography – Street Photographers

Phil Coomes writing on the BBC website today features a number of street photographers who are contributing to the festival of photography.

“The London Festival of Photography returns for its second year in June comprising 18 main exhibitions with further shows, workshops and talks going on throughout the month.

Each year it also organises three photographic competitions, one of which is the Student Street Award, and this year I was invited along as one of the judges.

Our role was to select six portfolios to go forward to the final round which are to be exhibited at Orange Dot Gallery in Bloomsbury, plus each student would be offered the chance to attend a workshop with photographer Peter Dench, whose latest work England Uncensored I wrote about recently.

The submissions ranged widely in quality, style and impact making the final selection a tough one. Some entries fell in and out of the final six as the judges debated the various entries before managing to agree. I think in the end we came up with a good mix of work and nothing too obvious. Each photographer had their own vision and way of interpreting the public space through their lens.”…….MORE

One of the excellent photographers featured in Phil’s article is

Heather Shuker

“Originally a Business Studies graduate I fell in love with photography in 2003 after spending a year volunteering for a charity in Sierra Leone. Starting with short courses at Central St Martins, followed by a post-graduate degree at the same institution and a photography MA at Brighton University, all the while taking any form of commissioned photography work available, my plans to “be a photographer” began to take shape.

As a photographer, I am particularly partial to the street, an environment where things are constantly changing and every photograph is unique, a brief moment in time when all the necessary elements come together. Working on the street is extremely challenging, both technically and physically, and requires determination and confidence.

Street photography for me is all about people; I photograph “life” and “happenings”, my approach being that of the unobserved observer, exploring everyday gestures and interactions to reveal people as they truly are. My photographic work has required me to question the boundaries between what is considered public versus private – particularly my series focusing on girls in nightclub toilets, and more recently my work featured in the exhibition on the topic of public smoking.

It has been great working with Peter Dench, as I have been an admirer of his work for some time. Peter’s tips on how to achieve better street photographs have become a real help in the pursuit of “that photograph”, such as, “if it moves, follow it – get in as close as you can” – not a bad rule, considering he has only been punched once.

Peter’s tips have served as a great guide. Street photography shapes you as a photographer, giving you confidence to carry on trying new things, new angles, and pushing for ‘that’ superior image.”

Photo by Heather Shuker
Photo by Heather Shuker
Photo by Heather Shuker
It is certainly worth seeing the other photographers featured and reading the rest of Phil’s article, find them here

Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Cameras?

Once there were compact cameras and DSLR cameras, then we had bridge cameras and now MIL cameras If you don’t know what is being talked about these are examaples The Panasonic Lumix G Series ,the Lumix DMC-GH2,  the Sony NEX and the Olympus Pen Series. Pentax is also taking grip on the market with it’s oddly designed Pentax K-01.

Here   at Lightstalking explains what, how, why

While not an entirely new technology, mirrorless cameras manufacturers have been enjoying a steady rise in interest of the compact cameras among amateurs and professionals alike. Initially marketed at serious amateurs who were looking for more from their point-and-shoots, but were not interested in a DSLR, the mirrorless camera, has helped fill a gap in camera technology. Their lightweight design offers users the comforts of carrying only a compact camera and their DSLR sized sensors produce images which rival some of the most popular DSLRs on the market..….MORE

How to Do Wonders With Taking Sunset Photos

From those good folks over at Lightstalking a little bit of advice when taking sunset pictures. I would add to what they say; always having a subject to the picture, never just sky, try using a neutral density graduated filter to enhance the sky and retain detail in the foreground and edit your pictures after the shoot, you really do only want one or two examples of that fantastic sky. If you end up with dozens you will still only ever look at one or two and skip over the rest.

Here is what Lightstalking has to say

Everyone loves a good sunset photograph. The problem is that a lot of sunset photos are a little clichéd and one photo just kind of blends into another. Here are some ideas for getting a great sunset shot that stands out from the crowd.

1) Wait Until After Sunset – While many photographers start clicking away as the sun is setting and hitting the horizon, there is a lot to be said for hanging around 20 minutes after it’s actually gone down. This little bit of time means the lighting isn’t so harsh, and some spectacular colours star to come out that can be captured with a timed exposure.

Two columns

Photo by Sergio Tudela

Photography Event Project – Dizzy Dogs

Here over at OSP Towers we get lots of requests to support, recommend, provide, find, you name it anything photographic comes our way. In general for anything that is even vaguely commercial we tell the sender in no uncertain terms to use a professional photographer and pay them. Everyone needs to earn a living and it is tough for photographers these days. You would, I am sure, be amazed how many requests we get for a student photographer to cover a wedding, to ‘help them with their portfolio’ yeah right! Who would use someone with no experience, amateur level cameras, no back up equipment,  and nothing to lose if it goes wrong to photograph the most important day of their lives. Cheapskates.

Sometimes we get a charity which genuinely needs help, and maybe offers something that would be more of a project than a commercial photography job. On our Intermediate Photography course we ask our students to find an event and offer their services to record and document, this is valuable to the student and may help the charity.

Today we were asked to help out with Dizzy Dogs Day (tail chasers I suspect), the request comes from Kat, so I guess she will be running around on the day, perfect name for a dog’s day out. Anyway all the information is on their website, if you feel like offering get in contact with Kat. dizzydogsday@hotmail.co.uk