Photography Tips #16: 7 Easy Rules of Composition

It’s been a while since I’ve written about photography and it is still one of the biggest parts of my life… so here are some of the things I have learnt over the past 8 years.
***

Photography composition takes a beautiful photo and makes it great. It also makes you slow down the snapping and get you to think about the subject and also what you are trying to convey. After all, photography is a form of art, and a great work of art does indeed take time. That is part of the beauty of it.

1) Don’t Restrict Yourself to Landscape.

The only things that should ever be kept landscape is phone pictures and video. Then again these are just unspoken rules, but vines would have looked so much better if people just turned their phone 90 degrees to fill the screen.
Using a Vertical format for a landscape image does something magical to a subject.

1
Aberystwyth Jetty, Ceredigion, UK – July 2016, Canon 6D 70-200mm f/2.8
In Landscape photography it is expected that you deliver landscape shots. However, to make your photography have an impact, there needs to be an element of the unexpected.
Additionally, a vertical frame gives you a taller area to deal with the foreground and the background. This really got me with seascapes, especially as sunset as it meant that I could pull down the colours of the sky and pull up the colours of the sea to create this balanced equinox of blue sky, blue sea melded with the sun’s evening display.

2) Lines!

 Lines are hands down my favourite thing to photograph. If you look at works by Rodchenko and the way he use lines in his black and white photographs, you may too be converted to the line life.
ALEXANDER RODCHENKO 1930
Aleksander Rodchenko 1930
Straight lines can be beautiful, but don’t limit yourself there! Try to find a converging point, get lower to the ground and take the risk of getting a bit dusty for a shot. Or just try out several framings for a certain line. Find a line that makes your eyes follow into the depth of your image.
PS-OTTAWA
Adriana, Byward Locks, Ottawa – Canon 6D 50mm f/1.8
HardKnott Roman Fort
HardKnott Fort, Cumbria, August 2017 – Lumix G7 (standard kit lens)
A good way to start with lines is to find a good building and play around with the lines against the sky or finding the lines within the building itself and take many many photos of different compositions to see for yourself what works best for you. Back in 2011 I did this in a Sainsbury’s Carpark in the UK and found some crazy shapes and lines I didn’t think I could find in a carpark!

3) Patterns & Symmetry

We are drawn to balance. This is what makes patterns and symmetry so powerful in any form of art, whether it is written word, traditional art, photography or even music. Patterns can be found in anything from manmade materials such as fences, buildings and pathways or naturally occurring such as plants, landscape and skylines.

IMG_5229-21
Llandudno

In this example of the pier in Llandudno the use of leading lines only emphasises the symmetry of the pier. What makes me really happy about this photo is the colour palette of muted blue and grey that balances the symmetrical properties. (Of course this is just an individual opinion and some may not like the balance and colours of this image, but of course art is individual and the artist does indeed know best 90% of the time.

4) Negative Space

img_2372-2
Le Mont Saint Micheal, France – Canon 6D, 18-40mm f/4.0

Negative space can be anything from a plain blue sky to a low aperture mush of colour. It is space that is not filled. We want to focus on a single subject the majority of time so use this to your advantage. Arguably you can use patterns as a negative space element, so long as it does not detract from the main visual, you’re good.

IMG_0021-12
Lake Windemere, UK – Canon 6D 24-105mm f/4.0
Don’t be afraid to use backgrounds as well like block colours, walls, floor for negative space with a subject. Also filling the frame with the subject/object can also have an effect much the same as negative space.

5) Natural Frames

Let things get in the way once in a while. Sometimes not having a “clear shot” is more interesting. While trawling the internet for examples of frame shots its always pictures of people in doorways and windows and I feel thats not a natural frame. Sure it looks cool and creates a frame in the photo, but it is not the kinda image that challenges the artist to get.

img_5729-4
Blue Planet Aquarium, Ellesmere Port, UK – Canon 6D 50mm f/1.8

img_0017-10
Lake Windemere, UK, Canon 6D 24-105mm f/4.0

6) Focus Focus Focus

Where is the focus at? Are you concentrating on something close up or far away, and if so what levels of depth does your potential subject have? In this instance, take off the auto focus on your lens and really get in tune with what you want to capture.

 

7) Make Mistakes

This may seem like a stupid point, but I can not implore how important it is to f*ck up once in a while. If you don’t then how do you know you have grown or improved? There needs to be the balance of amazing yourself at what you can do as well as having the ability to review your work and realise what you can do better or what needs to be improved on.

success

Normal Canadian Things I Find Weird #3

And so the saga continues. After being introduced to various aspects of coffee in Europe, see back to my Café and the Continent Post, I thought it may be good to share my thoughts on the Canada Coffee culture as its certainly…. different.
***

Normal Canadian Things I Find Weird #3 Canadian Coffee Culture

img_0008
So I can not say Briony anymore when it comes to ordering coffee at starbucks as no one can spell it so I go for Molly. Which isn’t always heard right…

Ordering Coffee – The Fast Food Coffee

(Not sure if this is just an anxiously awkward me thing or something others have faced as fearful foreigners.) 

Ordering coffee is a simple transaction. This statement has been challenging to me for a few months of being in Canada. Some uniquely Canadian thing, you can not escape from is the Double Double. What is a Double Double? It happens to be a coffee served with 2 cream and 2 sugar. Logical, if you understand the ordering system in this country. I wondered for a while why people would perpetually give me the funny look when I just wanted coffee.

img_0660

What I did not know is that in most places in Canada that do the coffee put the milk or cream and sugar in while they make it for you. This is madness. As someone who is used to getting the coffee and faffing about with sugar packets its completely mind blowing. More words to say at the cashier?! Outrageous. 
However, I understand the reasoning behind the order the sugar and milk; it does save the individual the faffing time… yet it is still a concept I need to get used to. And admittedly it does stop the days where you accidentally pour the sugar in the bin, and the paper into your coffee. This does happen more often than I would like to admit…

Roll Up the Rim Season

I mentioned this briefly in my previous post and I don’t understand the hype behind it. It’s all about the chance of winning – winning a doughnut, a coffee of a Honda Civic on a years lease. As I don’t understand it I asked my Canadian friends their thoughts…

“Roll up the rim is a Canadian classic, a Canadian pass time and overall a gamble to begin your day. Even though the coffee may be anywhere from weak coffee like water to week old cigarette butts juice the gamble of getting another coffee or pastry keeps us going.” – Mirre

I am like the wrong person to ask haha I hate Tim Horton’s! Even when I go and its roll up the rim I still get cold drinks. But I think people like it because it is cheap and good (I guess). And People love Roll up cause its like the chance to win on something you would probably buy anyway. It’s like if tampons came with a prize people would be like – This makes buying these more enjoyable hahaha – Maggie

I tried this phenomenon and did not win anything. Plus the whole concept of rim rolling is confusing and not easy to do if you haven’t heard of it before. Where is this hidden message? How do I unravel the secrets of the cup? One should not overthink these things.

The Rival $1 Coffee

So what I noticed while this whole rolling rim shenanigans is going on, across the road in McDonalds, there is a $1 coffee promotion. Coffee for $1. Thats basically 55p. Why would you go in for a roll lot of disappointment when you can have a large $1 coffee that actually tastes nice? Additionally you can collect the stickers on the cups so when the season is over you have copious amounts of free coffee. Thats a win win situation!

Cafeteria Coffee

I’m not sure if this is just an Algonquin College thing, but it kinda blew my mind. So there is a large variety of flavoured coffee. Not like vanilla lattes and caramel macchiatos… Nay, as in its flavoured coffee beans and that is something I’m not used to seeing regularly. I’m sure it exists elsewhere in the world but not as open as this.

coffee art
Some fancy coffee art from Bridgehead

*And finally*

French Vanilla

Why do we not have this back in the UK; and when we can get it, why is it so expensive?! I don’t know exactly what is in french vanilla, except for the vanilla of course, but it is pretty much a hot drink that rivals the godly status of hot chocolate on a cold rainy day. I suggest to anyone who like sweet things to go out of their way to try french vanilla as they will not be disappointed.

***

I am an avid coffee drinker, and these weird Canadian coffee credentials seem to make the experience smoother and more enjoyable so I don’t think I can complain too much!
Thanks for reading and enjoy the nice weather before 6th winter comes!

Links to my sites:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brionymollyphoto/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/brionymollyphoto/

2 Months of Canadiana Living

To be truthful it’s been very hard to put into words the transition of Europe to North America, so apologies for the delay, and enjoy this rambling read…
As a Brit moving to Canada didn’t seem that much of a move from the U.K. Oh how I was proven wrong. Of course the normal things of knowing that the British accent is loved were expected but a few things have thrown me slightly.

The best way to describe Ottawa is that someone has taken my memories of England and France and shifted them to the left a couple of inches. Pieces of Architecture from both cultures entwined with the modern city scape make living here easier than I expected.

_1030089-8

Language barriers

Unlike the conventional language barriers that are common in Europe, the Canadian Language barrier is more like a language hurdle that you can definitely have a laugh about. My usual experience with language barriers is with the complete inability to understand the noises someone is making. Over here it is as if someone wanted to make life more interesting and  just took a few words in the dictionary and switched the definitions and watch the chaos unfurl. As a Brit you could imagine my horror when I was told to come into work with no pants, as pants in Britain are underpants, not what the North Americans refer to as trousers. Again just small changes of words from mobile to cell, pavement to sidewalk and my favorite, courgette to zucchini. One of my favourite phrases of the UKadian night out that I definitely know not to ask is “Can I bum a fag?” This harmless whimsical slang of politely asking to borrow a smoke can be considered  as a bit unruly and may be seen as homophobic and not politically correct.  Many of my british english speaking friends also have encountered awkward language borders, a fun favorite is during classes; “Can I borrow a rubber?” which of course makes sense. a rubber to rub out your pencil. But alas, this does mean condom in the North Americas hence the perplexity and shock one receives from this statement.

“That’s a great British accent you have, how long have you been practicing?”
Oh my dear, if you didn’t figure out I was British from my accent I think we have an issue. My accent accentuates every little consonant to the extent that you may start to feel sorry for the letters being attacked and I have a habit of elision. However I have noticed something horrifying in the way I talk now that would make any elocution teacher shiver. My British Ts have digressed into Ds. (Send BBC Radio 4 care packages.)

But I notice some words I say are definitely different to the majority of people around me.(*Trigger Warning*)
Here is a list of words that I shall no longer say in fear of my own sanity, well being and integrity:

Aluminium
Vitamin
Schedule
Aubergine
Garage
Basil
Oregano
Corriander
Tuna
Yoghurt
Fillet
Route

One day we will be able to talk about you again.

_MG_0067-9.jpg

Shops, Pubs and Public Convenience

Shops are shops wherever you go, like you can buy your groceries in shops and markets all over the world and there is not much of  difference as the idea is ubiquitous. But lets look at our friend Ontario the province that I find myself in. Alcohol is not necessarily sold in supermarkets. There is no chance of going to the corner store to score yourself a bevvy. After living in Wales for the last 4ish years it is a bit of a surprise when you have to plan a trek to the local beer store or LCBO to buy the booze and not just pop down the road to replenish your liquor stocks. Okay, I see the pros for the government of monitoring alcoholism and things but also where is the equivalent meal for one deal you can get from M&S with microwave dauphinois potatoes and a bottle of prosecco?! I don’t think Canada has a M&S or Waitrose equivalent. (Why am I here again?!)

Lets move onto the purchasing of your groceries. I’m not sure If I am just an awkward or a rude person but in my experience of the Great British Shop, you don’t communicate unless its essential. This goes for retail and restaurants as well; there is no idle chatter. In my Canadian experience,  around 98% of the time, no matter the establishment, you’ll get someone saying “Hi” and engaging in conversation. *Panic stations* There is no way I would be prepared for this in the U.K. and usually would result in my abrupt walk away as it is an unspoken rule that this interaction is frowned upon in British society.

I would love to say Pubs are Pubs wherever you go. However, this would be a lie. Although, A bar is a bar wherever you go. If something claims to be a pub outside of Europe then I be prepared to have your idea of pub reformatted. Pubs are restaurants, and everything is on a tab. Pubs serve food always. And you usually pay at the table at the end of the night. And you tip. You tip a lot. That’s all I’m going to say about that.

_MG_0308-8

The City, The Town and Suburbia

I can’t really compare cities across the world only ones I’ve been to, so the majority European, the likes of London, Birmingham, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Paris, Lyon, Caen, Geneva, Salzburg, Riga, Brussels, Eindhoven and many other European Cities, and of course a smattering of cities in North America. And there is definitely a stark contrast between European Cityscape and North American.
I can’t say I hate the differences as they are just that different.

North American cities and towns seem to operate on a grid system. This is super handy to navigate and get around. It makes sense. The roads don’t have weird windy one way systems that make you want to drive off a bridge or lead you to somewhere miles away from where you need to be. The newer towns and cities seem to understand that roadways and sidewalks need to be wider for the regulation of road and foot traffic so there isn’t fear of death. *cough oxford street*.
However. There is a significant road feature that I miss. The humble roundabout. Europeans love it, the Americans don’t know how to use it, the roundabout wins hearts and eases traffic. Okay the last one was a lie, lets look at Milton Keynes and Swindon here for killing the roundabout. Yes, the roundabout is not a feature commonly use in Canada and well, it’s not exactly needed as most interactions are one road crossing another, not a knotty mess of 6+ plus roads crossing each other that seems to be a recurring feature throughout the European countries.

Onto the Suburbs. The place for commuting? I’m not quite sure why suburbs exist and how they exist and quite frankly they frighten me. Subdivisions are like council house estates in the UKadia but they seem to lack the integrated public conveniences and park space, just a twisted residential lattice with shopping centres located around it. It is definitely something I have not come across before in the Europes and something I’m not keen on trying out. I think I’ve watched too many suburban horror films.

_1020367

That’s what I make of my moving experience so far – Thanks for the read, leave me a star, a comment or a share and I’ll repay the favour.

 

Links to my sites:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brionymollyphoto/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/brionymollyphoto/

 

 

9 Things Cheer Prepared me For in Life

So today I was thinking as a tower of menus almost hit me in the face, that I wasn’t too worried about the damage the leather bound menus would do to my face as cheerleading taught me that it’s okay to catch things with your face. And this got me thinking that cheerleading even though my spell as a cheerleader was brief, it equipped me with some peculiar  life skills….

  1. Lifting with a straight back
    giphy (2).gif
    Yes we all hate the health and safety videos that are shown in certain working environments of the awkward people slowly picking up boxes with straight backs and the awful acting of how not to do, yet we still do it whatever way we chose?
    Well that all changed when you change the box for a person. Some boxes are heavy and well not really worth much so who cares if you look like a mess carrying a box? With people it’s a bit different and well, they rely on you and your proper technique to stay safe up in the air.  As well as not hurting yourself or causing a permanent injury. (Plus it works your thighs and bum out so thats a hidden bonus….)
  2. Teamwork makes the dreamwork
    “You are as strong as your weakest player”
    Well it’s true. If you have someone in your work environment who isn’t working as hard as the others or just isn’t as good at the job as others (it may even be you) You just have to learn to be patient or even share your knowledge and skills to make the team grow.
  3. Being hit in the face isn’t that bad
    ow.gif
    After a while it gets boring. Seriously after the first few times of using your face as a cushion for a falling person it does get a bit old.
  4. Catching falling objects is second nature
    Something thats not exactly a life skill but can get very handy at times.
  5. Positive energy
    Things are more exciting, more energised and just better with a shit eating grin on your face. I don’t know if its just me but being super happy and enthusiastic at the task at hand even if it is literally the worst job known to man, it makes it better.
  6. Wearing spanx no matter what your attire
    giphy (1).gif
    Awkward in skirts or dresses? Just wear spanx. Or running shorts. They give all the confidence.
  7. You can do anything with time and practice
    Looking to get more flexible? Put in in time and effort and you can get a perfect split in 2 weeks. You can go from handstand to walkover with repetition. So in theory you can just keep practising something you want to do and you will get it. Just keep your eye on your goal and don’t underestimate yourself.
  8. F***ing up is okay
    giphy
    It’s part of learning. It’s bound to happen and if falling on your face isn’t a great way of learning, then trying not to let that happen again will surely make you stronger. If you don’t fail how do you know what winning truly feels like. That leads nicely to my next point.
  9. Winning isn’t everything
    Getting a nice shiny trophy is great, but personal goals are more attainable and more worth while. Make and break your own achievable goals as there is always someone who is going to be better than you. (I’m still working on this one as I am super competitive.)Thanks for the read, have an awesome day!Links to my sites:

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brionymollyphoto/

    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/brionymollyphoto/

 

Photography Tips #13: Prone to Target

*Little Blog Post on life and photography*

Archery is not my first target sport. You could say that when I was younger I was attacked by paper, so now I shoot it in various ways, but to totally honest I don’t know why I do target sports.

It all began back in the day of the skinny weird teenager me. I was introduced to rifle shooting, firstly by air rifle and later to .22. Every Friday was taken up by shooting tiny targets at 25 yards with a rifle that was more like to do damage by using as a club than as its manufactured use. For the first few years of my shooting life, I was, I admit, convinced the only safe and practical way to shoot a rifle was lying down. Yes, it is a very safe way of shooting and arguably the stabilist way to shoot, but it is not the only way. Proof that I was not a smart child…

From Friday prone shooting, I moved to Monday Sports shooting. By the time I was 17, my parents got me the best gift I could ask for at the time; my very own Ruger 10/22. Nothing flashy, just a .22 sporting rifle perfect for the competitions I endeavoured to compete in. (disclaimer: By this point I did have a Firearms Certificate and been part of the club for around 3 years, so my parents weren’t being irresponsible. If anything they were encouraging me in a sport I was starting to flourish in.)

With my rifle club, there was opportunity to shoot larger calibers at longer distances bi-annually at the NRA shooting ground. These competitions were a bit of fun, nothing serious and a way to be introduced into full bore and the fun side of target shooting. Usually I participate when I’m free but the recent years have seen my time for rifle shooting dwindle, being replaced with archery, photography and just adult life.

Target shooting is a sport that relaxes me. It’s a hobby where you can do as much or as little as you like, for example I know many people who load their own rounds, and I know people who prefer to buy them. I know people who shoot for fun, a way to just socialise, let their stress out and people who are all for competitions. The range of people you get is astounding – different backgrounds, jobs, lives and even nationalities, it’s not just a sport for people burdened with money. (Although it does help sometimes).

Thats about it for my shooting love, looking forward to getting the time to get back into shooting!

IMG_5650-24.jpg

The photo bit that y’all came for…

I’ve reverted back to the 6D for shoots where there is no need for a fast shutter as it is a superior camera. (my own opinion.)

So the shoot was on a relatively overcast day, nothing too white-out grey horror show all photographers fear, but close. Due to the way I was taking pictures however, the sky wasn’t a main feature or focus. Mainly because shooting is a lying down sport.

Another thing about shooting is that it lacks a lot of motion so there isn’t going to be epic running shots or jumps. It’s just lying there, squeezing a trigger and reloading. I also found that people prefer the upper body shots (camera not gun) to whole body shots mainly because it can be awkward. My golden rule of 45 degrees works in this instance too!

Have a great day, thanks for the read and take a look at my things!

Links to my sites:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brionymollyphoto/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/brionymollyphoto/

website: https://www.brionymolly.photography

Photography Tips #12: Weddings

I’ve freaked myself out over wedding photography. After honing my instagram feed to inspirational photographers (who obviously use many assistants and lighting apparatus) I am geared up to add Briony-Molly Photography to the inspiring list. Alas – I do not have a plethora of assistants or a comprehensive flash, let alone an ample lighting set. Good start.
However, what I do have is a Canon 6d with a f/1.8 50mm lens and a 7dii with a f/4.0 17-40mm or 25-105mm lens. The 7dii needs a flash regardless of the lighting indoors which is not great, but the 6d can work without flash to very low lighting. Bit of an odd pairing but it works!

As I’ve only ever been to 3 weddings one being family and the others being a plus one to the other half, so I had no idea about weddings from a photographers angle. I think I read wayyy too many posts on how to make the special day magical, how to work the lighting, how to organise the day and it just disorganised me more. If anything it’s furthered my ambition to work with horses more, as a wave of a cap gets their full attention.

wedding.jpg

Here’s my ideal run of doing wedding photography

Consultation

It may be a Briony-thing but I prefer to meet people before I have a shoot with them. Albeit an hour before with a cuppa and a biscuit, getting to know the subjects and what they want to achieve out of my presence is somewhat imperative.
Say a couple want to have a documentary style or a more alternative style; you need to know this. Some couples may want more black and white. Some may just want the staged family shots. One thing is right out all the things you can do and get them to say what they prefer and want. People love choice. Its worked so far for me…

Be Prepared

Like any photography situation you need to be prepared. But in this case, have spare batteries in pockets and at least two cameras ready to take the candid f/1.8 shots and the more wide angle group shots. With the venue, do the research- visit it if possible to scope out the good natural light and the pretty spots. Maybe even google the venue and weddings to see what others have done – proof of my initial cluenessless.

Lighting changes constantly, so do people so be agile!

Be Bold
Confidence is key. Relatives and alcohol is not a great mix so stand your ground be firm but nice and get people in the shots. Tell people to move and take multiple shots until you are happy. They will thank you later.

Have Fun
Don’t do a Briony and worry yourself over nothing. Getting stressed shows in your work. The more relaxed and fun you are having will reflect in your work when you are in post-production.

Be Yourself
We all have a unique style so don’t try and be someone else. People hire you for you not someone else so if they want a certain twist then thats acceptable but if you physically can not do someone else’s style, don’t do it and be clear to them about that.

Don’t worry, smile, get a coffee on the go and have a chill day!

Links to my sites:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brionymollyphoto/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/brionymollyphoto/

website: https://www.brionymolly.photography

Photography Tips #11: Capturing a Performance

There is nothing I like more than lying on the floor not having to worry about things. Maybe my nihilist approach to life does have its benefits as the angle from the floor under theatre lights does something magical for me. Living by the 45 degree rule in photography and by application the rest of my life, finding that the 45 degree rule is 3D just opens up to a new corridor of opportunity.

I’ve written a lot about the golden 45 degree rule, having the mid point between profile and portrait that gives the depth of 3D. In show jumping I love using this angle as it gets the height of the jump, the folding of the horse and rider as well as the length of the horse in it’s leap. This applied in non-sport photography in my opinion isn’t as great. Portrait photos you want portrait, or profile traditionally. Most people I’ve worked with prefer the traditional shots I’ve taken. Maybe this is due to them being within my comfort zone and therefore I excel at it. Again I need to listen to my own advice here of practice makes perfect.

Working with the university sports teams opened the door to working with the university societies. Last week I had the pleasure of working with the Nomadic Players, a drama and theatre society. Their choice of performance was A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess. Being an adaptation from a book, and being a famous cult film directed by Stanley Kubrick, there is alot of room for interpretation of the ‘Ultra Violence.’ The story line consists of alot of violence that was tastefully portrayed and implied by the Nomadic players, pulling the comedic roles and lines in an absurd contrast to the serious.

IMG_2766-8.jpg

Cue my lying on the floor. Luckily, I was able to attend the dress rehearsal and the final performance, the dress rehearsal giving me free reign on where I could go to interact with the actors with my camera and the performance giving the actors free reign of the stage, props and their abilities.

IMG_2162-18.jpg

Although I was still working on the best settings for the constant changing light, you can see the lower angle, it gets the whole body and action as well as the intimidating effect the actors are imposing.

IMG_2043-8.jpg

The lower angle works nicely in the theatre to get the lights behind the actors and create dramatic scenes recapitulating the theatre in a still image.

Lighting is one of the essential components of the arts. Photography has to work around this art platform and utilise what it is given to produce incredible results. The contrast the theatre gives to lighting with the background, ceiling and floor being mainly black, is incredible.

IMG_2425-66

Onto the photography nitty gritty, tips and tricks and what I’ve learnt from my thespian photography immersion.

Be prepared for sudden light changes from low light to bright light without a seconds notice.

Theatre lights make the scene. So the scene’s will change in lighting rapidly to add effect. In this case there is alot of change of lighting up at the back and low light at the front. Or spot lights on certain points of the stage. To combat this I kept my camera on the Tv (shutter) priority function with an auto ISO setting running up to 6400 and an aperture range of f/1.8-4.0. This allowed me to focus on the shutter speed to change it quickly in these low light/high light situation.

It’s a constantly moving machine. Don’t be afraid to take a lot of shots.

Even when it is quiet, don’t worry about the noise your shutter makes. You’re there to take photos, so take them! Also don’t be afraid of using a continuous shutter in the scenes that get a bit rowdy.

It’s a full body experience.

Theatre is all about body language. Actors exude characters out of every pore. Don’t just focus on their face, as gestures add to the performance and a headshot may lose this vital aspect.

IMG_3211-98

Theatre is an experiment of emotions. Don’t be afraid to experiment along the way with dynamic edits including high contrast black and white. Although black and white can either make or break an image, and ideally it is the consumer’s opinion that matters the most.

As always, enjoy yourself and don’t get stressed if it isn’t working out. Just take a breather, look over what you’re doing and start again. It’s not the end of the world. You got this.

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Links to my sites:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brionymollyphoto/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/brionymollyphoto/

website: https://www.brionymolly.photography

 

Camera Review: Canon EOS 7dii

What an amazing outcome. After the untimely (but fixable) death of my Canon EOS 6d I managed to acquire, one of the arguably best sports camera Canon produce the Canon EOS 7dii. This update from the 7d, has all the features the 7d had, but augmented to a modern platform.

I admit I may be a bit bias with this camera as its amazing.

Features the 7dii boasts are:

  • 20MP Dual-Pixel AF CMOS Sensor
  • 10 fps continuous shooting with autofocus
  • 65 all cross-type autofocus sensor
  • 150,000 RGB + IR pixel metering sensor
  • Dual Digic 6 processors
  • Enhanced environmental sealing
  • Compact Flash (UDMA) and SD (UHS-I) slots
  • USB 3.0
  • Built-in GPS
  • Larger-capacity LP-E6N battery
  • Shutter speeds up to 1/8000th seconds
  • Shutter rated to 200,000 cycles (vs 150,000 on 7D)

The shutter is something out of this world. Being used to the shutter speed the 6d had and then the 550d, the 7d’s shutter is like a Maclaren whereas the 6d is alike to a sports Citroen hatchback. What makes this even better is the 1/8000 capacity. Being able to shoot with higher shutter settings and a larger ISO range has just made everything that extra bit tasty.

Another mouthwatering feature that I fell in love with instantly must be the autofocus settings. With its 65 point AF for stills, the 7d has a range of sports settings as well applied to suit best static and dynamic sports. In this AF, borrowed from the 1dx, ‘Intelligent Tracking and Recognition’ (iTR). The iTR allows the photographer to initiate a point of focus, depress it with the shutter button and track the movement in the forefront of focus, wherever the initial subject ends up on the focus points. Pretty neat really.

Examples of photos from the 550d(left) and the 7dii(right) in dressage. The 550d being a good beginner DSLR needs a lot of attention with the slightest change of light and colour. the 7dii with the right settings needing no post production and beautiful quality images from the get go.

Another comparison, this time line outs in rugby. The 6d (right) has an amazing depth of colour that can be exaggerated in post production but due to the slow shutter it’s harder to get “the” moments. The 7dii(left) adapts well to light changes, although has not got the same capacity of low light and colour than the 6d.

Although the 7dii is an amazing camera, and I do love the quality of images it can produce, the low lighting is definitely inferior to the 6d. The low light colour quality of the 6d without the need of a flash really means I can concentrate less on adjusting my settings constantly and more on the subject matter. With the 7dii, I definitely found the lowlight aspect a constant challenge. In conclusion I am happy I have the abilities of both!

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Links to my sites:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brionymollyphoto/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/brionymollyphoto/

website: https://www.brionymolly.photography

 

Archery Series #4: Worcester, Double Worcester

Being back with relatively frequent practises and competitions in archery, brings me to doing all sorts of rounds, not just the standard portsmouth we all grow to have a love/hate relationship with. This weekend gave me the opportunity to shoot one of my favourite barebow rounds, but this time with my trusty compound. The Worcester round.

 

Differing from a usual indoor round of 3 arrows per end for 10-20 ends, the Worcester round uses 5 arrows per end for 12 ends with the total being out of 300. The scoring is different too, with the highest central value being 5 and working it’s way out to 1 (above left). What makes it more exciting for compound is instead of a central target face, the compound is given a 5-spot, offering the score of X, 5 and 4 (above right).

To be completely honest all my practises have been at pins recently trying to focus on correcting my form and getting into the back tension, string, nose, release game, so the thought of a 5 spot I have never shot at before became a little daunting. Even with this aspect however I really enjoyed the shoot. I enjoyed it so much I did the morning and afternoon session making the single Worcester into a double Worcester. (Double means two consecutive shoots of the same round, it goes for other rounds as well such as Portsmouth.)

 

In this competition, the Worcester is split into 2 ends of 6, the first 6 ends being shot at the top target (Details A and C) and the latter 6 ends shot at the bottom target. (Visa Versa for details B and D). This aspect is a little more challenging but certainly heats up the competition as the sighters only allow you to shoot at the first target with no secondary sighters to shoot at the lower (or higher) target.

The Morning shoot (Top) I gained the score of 267, placing me second overall, only 5 points behind the leader! (If I hadn’t missed!).
The Afternoon shoot (Bottom) I was starting to tire and got the overall score of 259, not fantastic but giving me the overall double score of 526. This score is good enough to give me the Dyfed County record as well as my Club Record for both Double and Single Worcester!

Morning Results
Very questionable maths by me
Afternoon session
Again, questionable maths

All in all I am super happy with my result as I know I can shoot better, giving me the target of getting over 275 next time I compete at Worcester.

Next weekend brings the BUCS finals in Bristol with a FITA 18 and a head to head. I am a little nervous!

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Links to my sites:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brionymollyphoto/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/brionymollyphoto/

website: https://www.brionymolly.photography

 

 

 

Archery Series #3: String, Nose…

Again with the Archery! To be fair, it is a sport that I am improving in readily, and learning more and more as I go along. When I first picked up a bow I didn’t see myself being intrigued in archery forums and articles in sports magazines, but now I am a true archery nut.

I am a compound archer now, so the more technical the equipment I have, the more I have been reading into technique and different types of form, anchor, the importance of a draw length and draw weight. One thing that really sticks to me as a compound archer is back tension.

Back tension release is supposedly a method that minimises the anticipation of the arrow release. For myself I tense and hope that I don’t clip my ear with the trigger. I realise this is mainly due to the hand trigger I have and my draw length. In many forums and articles I’ve noticed the correlation of shortening the draw length to get a more successful back tension release. This is not always the case. For my bow, draw length can be adjusted inch by inch. Currently I’m happily sat at 26″ with my anchor point being on the side of my face, thumb under my chin.

 

 

My anchor point as you can see already squishes my nose and does allow me to roll back into a back tension release. However, with back tension release you keep pulling your back muscles and hope the release will trigger at the same point each time like its supposed to. I unfortunately feel this is chancery and I am always shocked when the arrow finally flies at the target. This usually ends up with me clipping my hair or ear making me jump even more than usual.

 

 

At 20 yards my back tension release is sort of showing some improvement but at the same time it’s not the grouping I’ve been getting with using the release as a usual trigger with a small amount of back pressure.It is something to work on over time, and hopefully with several hours of practise a week I’ll improve and get less scared of my back muscles.

On another note: I made it to BUCS finals!!

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Links to my sites:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brionymollyphoto/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/brionymollyphoto/

website: https://www.brionymolly.photography