Getting color correct images is very important to many different types of camera users, from product photographers to bloggers. I'll teach you how easy it is to get your pictures perfect! All it takes is a little white balancing action.Read More
Today, I am writing to celebrate the last year I’ve spent with my glasses and the upcoming year. I’ve re-subscribed to Transitions lenses with an updated prescription. I’ve worn my transitional lenses more than any other pair of glasses I’ve owned, especially because I know I won’t be annoyed by the glare of the sun. I truly love them and encourage my friends to reconsider a very poorly advertised option on the glasses playing field.Read More
Wondering what life is like with a foster pet? Click to learn more!Read More
A video that documented my first day of being a foster. The video covers everything from picking her up to hanging out and getting to know each other. Enjoy!Read More
After two weeks of foster care, I dropped off Elantra for her spay surgery. Two weeks have gone by fast. In other words, 3 and a half rolls of paper towel went by fast. Pee pads and chew toys made their way on to my shopping lists. I also purchased not one, but two different types of infant containment devices. All foster experiences are unique, and in my case, I learned about how much work it takes to care for a puppy. I say work lightly because this kind of work is so rewarding.Read More
As I continued to work as a volunteer intern at PAWS Chicago, I came up with a project idea. I had been doing some research about what fostering is like because being surrounded by dogs daily sparked an interest. Then I thought, why not make a project out it?! Why don’t I try out fostering and document the experience? After getting the personal project approved by my boss, I headed over to the adoption center to propose my idea. The people at the adoption center thought it was a great idea, so they gave me the thumbs up to apply.Read More
If you are wondering where I’ve been all this time, I have a boatload of puppies to blame. You heard me right, a boatload of furry balls and adoptable cuteness. In other words, I spent my summer days as a volunteer photographer and social media intern at Paws Chicago.
As every other college student experiences in the spring, I was sending applications to internships and job opportunities left and right. I spent countless hours hunting through various internship and job websites. I was writing cover letter after cover letter, and following up one email after another. Rinse and repeat. At the end of this grueling process, I learned that I was only going to receive one response. And that response was summed up in this one sentence email…Read More
A year ago from today, I found out that I needed emergency surgery to keep my eyesight in my left eye. It was a Friday. The doctor explained the “simple” procedure to me; the device they were going to implement on my eyeball was a scleral buckle. It’s like a silicon rubber band that surrounds your eyeball that is meant to push your retina back into place and keep it from detaching. While I was under, they also used laser and cyro-laser to repair what could be described as holes in my retina and weld it back into place. My doctor looked at his assistant and asked what his schedule looked like. Turns out, he wasn’t able to fit me in as “soon” as he wanted, so they defaulted to squeezing me in on the following Tuesday. As if that wasn’t soon.Read More
Tom Wood studied fine art initially. He grew up around art, but not photography. He studied experimental film and then got into photography.
He used to buy postcard photos and then put them in albums. He essentially collected these photos of people who were dead/gone. Still did not know much about photography, but he really enjoyed making collages from magazine photographs. A Bill Brandt photo railway was on his childhood bedroom wall.
His dad worked in a car factory, so he used to spend a lot of time there and drew pictures of the men who worked there. He also worked there at one point. Wood then left for university and took photography at the end of his time in school. Tom recalls admiring Joseph Sudek's work. His first book on photography was by August Sander. At the end of his foundation course, he realized that he liked to collect photos of people.Read More
Marc Le Galle, a Bath Spa Alumni in the flesh, graciously came in this week to teach a lighting workshop. His session was extremely useful, having not been in the studio for almost a year now. I find the studio to be a very sterile and rigid place, which is probably why I have naturally deterred from such a space. This workshop ignited a friendly atmosphere in the studio, Marc was phenomenal at getting the group to work together, and he made sure we got our hands on every angle of studio equipment.Read More
Meet the Photographer:
Talks by Jon Tonks and Matt Shonfeld about the industry, their personal work, and careers.
Jon Tonks’ recent book and exhibition 'Empire' has achieved significant acclaim (one of Martin Parr's best Photobooks of the year). Jon will be talking about the development of the Empire project, commissioned work and current work in progress.
Matt Shonfeld is the Executive Director of Institute, a media company that represents some of the world's leading contemporary photographers (such as Simon Norfolk, Christina De Middel, David Maisel etc.Read More
Hannah Watson is the director of Trolly, an independent publisher. Trolly was founded in 2001 and it gained recognition in photography as a medium for change. The publisher is hugely successful because it stayed true to photographers while honing a clear vision. They produce beautiful books with conviction and purpose and win numerous international awards.Read More
To begin with, she is dyslexic. She reads a page for its spacial awareness and font/text before actually reading the words. And growing up, she had access to many art books at home. Morag naturally fell into appreciating the arts from a young age. She became interested in Jan Vermeer’s work. Vermeer is a Dutch painter (1632-1675) who specialized in painting the day to day life of the middle class within interiors. Morag is specifically fascinated by the way Vermeer paints light. And looking at his work only educated young Morag more on the beauty of light within space. She also admired that the situations he painted were real. The subjects were always engrossed in what they were doing, not peering out at the painting’s audience. They were so real.Read More
After being bombarded with ads on Facebook for a free photography webinar, I was curious about what kind of business advice they would give. The "5 Ways to Kickstart Your Photography Business" webinar is by Dave Seeram, an editor in chief at PhotographyBB + Clarity (mag) and Corwin Hiebert, owner of Tandem Agency. Lately, my university has scheduled business sessions with a photographer to enhance our business practice in photography for the long run. After hearing some business advice firsthand, I eventually decided to sit down and watch this webinar and see what it had to offer.Read More
Celine Marchbank is a photographer based in London who works in documentary, commercial, and editorial. By looking at her work, you can see that she's fascinated by the small details. Looking and seeing are truly her strengths. Marchbank tends to carry on this theme throughout all of her work. Besides working as a professional photographer, she also regularly gives lectures to the BA (Hons) students in Photography at Ravensbourne University in London.Read More
This workshop prepared us for on location shoots that involve professional lighting. We used portable flash equipment on the streets of Bath while being lead by our course leader, Kellie Hindmarch. Portable light kits provide a more powerful light source while on location instead of using speed lights.
We learned how to balance artificial lighting with the ambient light to generate additional impact into an environmental portrait.
On Location Setup:
Flash off camera on a lighting stand with reflective umbrella, triggered by radio slave with camera tripod mounted. The camera was in manual mode to synch the flash speed with the camera. We began by selecting our desired f stop for depth of field.
- Subject metered for the flash output for the settings on the camera e.g f8 and 1/125th shutter. This setting needs to be at least as bright as background to be effective as else the ambient light will be the dominant light source.
- Take a photograph.
- The background will appear darker than the main subject. With extremely small apertures backgrounds can be made to appear black even in daylight.
- Level of illumination of the background can be adjusted by adjusting the shutter speed as this allows more ambient light to illuminate the background thus giving a balanced exposure. So called “dragging the shutter”
- Accordingly the level of background illumination can be adjusted to taste either to give a neutral, balanced effect with the flash and background ambient light contributing equal amounts of light or create and increasingly dramatic effect to improve the contrast of the foreground subject compared to the background
- This technique works on the basis the flash duration is so rapid and bright (1000th of a second) that by slowing the shutter speed to allow more ambient light on the background it has minimal effect on the main subject.
- When using very slow speeds and/or long lenses are being used it’s essential to use a tripod, preferably with a cable release, to eliminate any motion blur.
- Shutter speed must be slower than the sync speed as using a faster speed won’t allow camera shutter to close in time and part of the photo will be obscured by the shutter curtain.
For year three, I am looking to build a client friendly portfolio. That being said, I want to begin thinking about the areas in which I work well, specifically what categories my style best suits. At the moment, I am really enjoying the Coffee Guide project that I am working on. It allows me to combine 5 exciting aspects, including; travel, photography, working with people within new/familiar communities, exploring commercial print/book design, create a business plan, and collaborate with students outside my course (i.e. graphics and business).Read More
Based in Bath, James works in freelance photography and video producing. He specializes in documentary, photojournalism, editorial and portrait photography. During his university days, he began majoring in surf science in Plymouth. He then dropped out and became a surfing instructor for 3 years. Once his interest in photography strengthened, he took prerequisite classes to get into the photography program at Falmouth University. He studied there from 2009-2012.Read More
During a Friday afternoon, I went to my local Lenscrafters to get my annual checkup. Sometimes I have a change in my prescription. I like to do this during the summer, right before going back to school. My appointment was pretty redundant until the conversation about dilating my eyes came up. I had very little knowledge about dilation. The year before, I said no because I thought it would hinder my ability to drive home from the appointment. After looking at images of my eyes from the year before and images we took that day, the doctor really encouraged me to let her look further into my eye through dilation. I agreed.
After taking some stinging drops to the eyeballs, I sat in the reception waiting for them to kick in. Once they were ready, my doctor brought me back into the room and began shining lights into my eyes. It was incredibly uncomfortable. once she finished both eyes, she stepped back and walked over to a poster displaying the anatomy of the eye (cue the internal panic).
She described that she thinks my retina is experiencing “tears” or “holes”. I watched her scribble a small diagram of my eyes onto a referral sheet along with a phone number and address. I was told to make the appointment as soon as possible so that I could be “treated”, but I was getting on a plane heading towards Puerto Rico in less than 24 hours. To my relief, she told me I would be okay traveling, but that I needed to go to a retina specialist in Puerto Rico if I began to see flashing lights and stars. Being the stubborn child that I am, I still boarded the plane the following morning. I had a grand vacation with close friends, NO REGRETS.
Once I began my journey back to Illinois, I made a Retina Specialist appointment for the day after my arrival. My mom and I went to the appointment together (crossing our fingers). At the appointment, the nurse began by testing the pressure of my eyeballs. To do this, they put numbing drops in your eye and then press a little device against your eye until it beeps, recording the pressure. Let me tell you, a numb eyeball is a weird feeling...but the test wasn’t scary or painful at all. The next few tests were similar to my regular eye doctor visits, with your average reading of the letters in front of you, covering left eye, covering right, etc. The nurse then gave me some dilating drops and had me wait in the reception until the doctor was ready to see me.
By the time I could barely read the texts on my phone, I saw the doctor walk down the hall and call me name. Here we go. We sat in a different room and waited more. The doctor seemed to have been busy finishing up someone’s laser appointment before finally making it into our room. He introduced himself, asked some questions about my floaters and flashes, and then positioned my chair back to observe my eyes with a magnifying glass and another very bright light. This part sucked. I wasn’t the biggest fan of having my eye somewhat probed while having a magnifying glass ENHANCE the lights that were already shining through my eye. He finished the right eye, saying that everything was good. I then had to endure the same uncomfortable probing and blinding lights on my left eye.
When he finished mumbling off terms to the nurse like “___ 8 o’clock” and “___ 11 o’clock”, he leaned against the desk and began to explain the retinal detachment that was happening in my left eye. He explained that I would need eye surgery as soon as possible, and that his next opening would be the following Monday. My mom chimed in, asking if it was a laser type of surgery, and he shook his head and said, “No, this is surgery. Like at the hospital and with general anesthesia”. He went on to explain more about how I was going to “need a Scleral Buckle.” #yay. He told us that is was a silicon rubber band that they will be placing around my eyeball. #totallynormal. It will essentially make my eye less sphere-like and more oblong like a grape. #trendy. It will physically help push my retina back into place. Though it won’t change the shape “appearance” of my eye. In surgery, they will probably laser parts of my retina, welding it to the back of my eye. And then they may potentially put a gas bubble in my eye to help push the retina into the back of my eye even more. This would prevent me from being able to fly in airplanes until the bubble disappeared (which could take a month and prevent me from going back to England for school). Gasp.
I was scared. I’ve never had surgery, never gone under anesthesia, never even had my blood drawn (until moments after we left that office to get a pre-op check up). In the long run, this surgery saved me from going blind in my left eye. As cool as it sounds to be a one-eyed-photographer, I’ll pass on the opportunity. The night before the surgery, I stopped eating and drinking after midnight. The next morning, I headed to the hospital. And BOOM. Surgery.
I will genuinely say that recovering was the absolute worst experience. I should have been more afraid of recovery than the surgery itself. I came out of surgery with my eye all patched up, and it had to stay that way for 24 hours. I could not read, watch tv, or even look without my patched up eye trying to move alongside it's healthy partner in crime. Seriously, dude. Why?! So, I found a nice audio book and spent a good portion of my first week in bed listening to Amy Poehler in her book, "Yes Please". I thought, if I cannot watch comedy, I might as well listen to it. And of course I searched for my comedy queen's new book. I was so relieved that the book was not only available in audio format, BUT THAT AMY READS HER BOOK TO YOU. Yup, I spent my first week of recovery, in bed, with Amy.
Nobody told me how fashionable eye surgery was going to be. Unfortunately, I had brought everything but a fresh pair of underwear to the hospital that day. So I asked my mom to get me a pair from the mall (conveniently close to my hospital, is this a sign?) While I was in the operating room, not only did she buy me CUTE panties, but two pairs of sunglasses came back in the same bag.
One pair is featured in the photos. I cannot tell you how often I had to wear these things. My 3 different eye drops/4 times a day routine made my eye's pupil massive. Therefore all forms of light were uncomfortable to be around, including natural daylight around the house.
The second week was better, I was actually moving around the house. Keep in mind; I'm not even supposed to lift anything beyond the weight of a gallon of milk. I even went out to dinner
with my mom and her boyfriend. Now, I had to choose between being looked at for my eye being all weird and disgustingly red, or for having an eye patch. I went with the eye patch; I figured the other patrons would enjoy their dinner more had they not laid eyes on my one terribly freaky one.
The waiter, coincidentally, was hot that night, and my mom's boyfriend thought it would be funny to ask him how pretty he thought I looked that particular evening. As cute as it is to blush after experiencing this hilarious situation, remember to add that eye patch to the equation. Hot. Very hot pirate. As in, my cheeks are burning.
In the end, "we" all had a blast making fun of one-eyed Alena. Hell week was over and things got better (much better). Getting eye surgery was a scary concept to begin with, but I'm glad I won't be going blind anytime soon. The lesson to be learned here is that you should always get your eyes dilated (specially if near-sided), and DON'T ever ignore flashes or major floaters in your vision.
Happy Seeing :)