Thursday, 26 September 2013

The Image Maker. Part Two - Ghostly Apparitions

Please buy a copy of this month's Black and White Photography magazine (issue 155, October) and see my second lesson in basic photo-manipulation.

This month it's all about adding lighter elements to a photograph and I demonstrate how to make ghostly apparitions and genies.

All the components for each photograph were produced with the Leica M Monochrom and I am using Photoshop Elements 11 in order to show that these techniques are achievable on modest budgets.

Thursday, 29 August 2013

First steps in writing - The Image Maker

I'm not sure I could have predicted where I would be in five years time, five years ago. After a lovely meeting with the team over at Black and White Photography Magazine I now find myself to be a writer (or trying to be a writer - I'm slowly getting the hang of it).

I have embarked on a ten issue series to help present some very simple, yet effective, photo manipulation and photo creation techniques. These are designed to be an introduction (there are so many ways to do something in Photoshop) and it is my hope that some of the readers may be encouraged to discover more. Many of my own attempts have only come about through trial and error, gradually learning and building a recipe book of what can be done to a photograph once it has been transferred to the computer.

To prove that expensive equipment is not essential all the work has been carried out using Photoshop Elements 11. (The instructions are the same for full versions of Photoshop).

The first issue is out now and demonstrates a method for adding dark subjects to a photograph. The following image of the pirate boat was completed using this technique to add the sky, birds and border.

All the elements, apart from the border, were taken with the Leica M Monochrom.

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Black and White Photography Magazine Interview - August 2013 Edition

It's been a few months since I was awarded the Leica M Monochrom and Black and White Photography Magazine have kindly printed a five page interview in the August 2013 issue to see how I'm getting on since winning and to find out a little bit about me. It is such a positive experience to have such a big write up about my work. Copies are available to buy now from all good newsagents.

Monday, 20 May 2013

Leica M Monochrom. Part 4 - Flights of Fancy

I've recently embarked on a writing assignment that will hopefully teach readers a few basic tips and tricks and encourage them to play with their imagery. More news to follow...

I've been looking through various books and online sources to confirm to myself that photo manipulation is not confined to modern photography and the list of practitioners is vast. Its history is as old as photography itself and some of the work is amazing. It is interesting to read the various arguments between the purists (straight photography) and the pictorialists (anything goes photography). This week I discovered William Mortensen by following different threads and I think he's got to be added to my list of inspirational photographers. Apparently Ansel Adams took a definite dislike to his approach and strongly argued against his manipulated, stage and romanticist imagery. Check out Carey Loren's write up at )

Other practitioners I've been looking at recently include the following:

Oscar Gustave Rejlander - composite/combination printing
Julia Margaret Cameron - staged photography
Francis James Mortimer - composite/combination printing
Henry Peach Robinson - composite/combination printing
Angus McBean - photo manipulation
Jerry Uelsmann composite/combination printing
Man Ray -experimental techniques

The Leica M Monochrom and me are now taking a slight diversion in approach. I'm still getting to grips with what it can do (I still make mistakes and I wish I could say every picture ever taken was amazing, but I can't), but it's time to take a little holiday in my world.

The Spitfire is 100% Leica M Monochrom. The remainder are appx. 70% Leica 30% Nikon. I've started building folders of Leica resources to incorporate into my imagery, but at the moment I don't have everything I need in those folders.

I'm working on it.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Leica M Monochrom. Part 3 - baby steps

A selection of photographs taken over the last few weeks...


A selection of book cover sales from the last few months.