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Home Interesting





Last Build Date: Tue, 27 Mar 2018 00:54:10 PDT

 



Interesting Home Interior Design

Sun, 12 Sep 2010 21:49:00 PDT

New! Christmas Dining Room Decorating Ideas - take this idea for decorating a dining table and make it your own original concept for Christmas dinner.

Feng Shui has helped our home environment feel more harmonious, find out more about how it works with interior decorating. To help take the guesswork away from making changes in your home try 3D Plan Modeling it could save you money in the long run. Proportion and Balance are key ingredients for design and decorating, The Fibonacci Series and The Golden Mean are useful tools to help you design to pleasing proportions and create balance, and don't forget to look at a structured way for New Home Planning. You can also see the home being constructed from start to finish as a detailed photographic diary.

The topic that interior designers like the least is construction, it's mundane but if you learn a little it can go a long way to making you achieve much better schemes, so look at construction for interior designers to get you started. or are you thinking about becoming an interior decorator, read all about it.

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Outdoor living

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Paris Hilton in Bed

Sat, 11 Sep 2010 21:58:04 PDT

Paris Hilton in BedBedBed[...]



HOST Development

Mon, 06 Sep 2010 11:26:46 PDT

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HOST Development has $5000 Down Payment Assistance funds for first-time buyers! That’s on top of our usual $5000 closing cost grants.

A total of $10,000 in assistance may be available to you to purchase a 2, 3 or 4 bedroom home at Helensview that is LEED certified. Prices are between $189,000 and $229,000.

LEED, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is a nationally accredited benchmark for green building. For more information on LEED and what it means for future Helensview owners,
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Jeffrey Cortland Jones

Thu, 26 Aug 2010 11:57:00 PDT

at Christopher West Presents
Artist Reception, Thursday June 3rd, 5pm - 8pm
First Friday: June 4, 2010 5–9pm


christopher west presents is pleased to announce a A Rush and a Push, an exhibition of new paintings by Cincinnati–based Jeffrey Cortland Jones. Opening reception for the artist will take place on Thursday, June 3rd from 5 pm until 8 pm. The exhibition will run through June 26th.


Jones, a native of East Tennessee, received his MFA in painting from the University of Cincinnati in 2000. He sees painting as a physical activity and a material process rather than as a language that conveys narrative meaning. He is interested in how chance happenings and the union of formal opposites such as geometric versus organic and controlled versus spontaneous, challenge and instruct the work. His work has recently been exhibited in New York City; Brooklyn, NY; Los Angeles, CA; Oakland, CA; San Francisco, CA; Boston, MA; Cincinnati, OH; Cleveland, OH; Philadelphia, PA; St. Louis, MO; Atlanta, GA; Indianapolis, IN; Nashville, TN, and Chicago, IL; as well as in Buenos Aires, Argentina; Haifa, Israel; and Berlin, Germany. This is his first exhibition at the gallery.




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House For Sale

Thu, 26 Aug 2010 11:54:59 PDT

It was with great surprise that I received an email this morning from a Connecticut realtor notifying me of the presence of the late H.C. Westermann's house on the market. The current status of the house had been the subject of questioning recently; although there has been scholarship published about the house, what happened to it after Westermann's wife Joanna Beale Westermann passed away some years ago was unclear to myself and others. Westermann's house was, perhaps, the culminating work of his extremely productive and storied career as an artist. Having braved difficult living conditions for nearly his entire life, he put his all into crafting the home that was the stuff of dreams for himself and his wife, as it was literally dreamed up by the two of them. Westermann painstakingly built the home from foundation to ceiling, all by hand and with very little assistance, using the most exacting standards of craftsmanship at great physical and financial cost. He was so dedicated to old-world methods of working that he refused to use Philips-head screws in constructing his house and used the finest wood he could find. Attached to the living space was a combination artist studio and gym, making the property place where he could both work and live with his wife in the relative seclusion they had so long desired. Hand-carved detailing throughout the home and studio mark the house as being Westermann's creation and reflect some of his life experiences. Sadly, Westermann passed away before he was able to move into the house. His beloved wife Joanna Beale Westermann lived there until her death.So that brings us up to speed. The elephant in the living room is, who should have Westermann's house now that himself and his wife are gone? It is unclear whether it was in private hands after Joanna's passing but before right now, but it seems to me that it would be a travesty and perhaps an ethical issue to allow this incredible place to become a private residence. Does one person or family deserve to privately own what could be an incredible opportunity to educate the public about a very important American artist? On a very human note, is it ethical for someone to live in a house that someone labored so incredibly hard to build but passed away before being able to enjoy? The best answer is that a museum or cultural non-profit foundation should acquire the house, preserve it, curate it, and open it to the public. The artist's house as museum is a concept well-articulated by now; School of the Art Institute of Chicago does a fabulous job curating and maintaining the home of the late Roger Brown. To cite an architectural example, people travel from around the world to visit the home and studio of Frank Lloyd Wright. Perhaps it is a bit idealistic to propose such a scenario as the only option; especially in current economic times it would be assuredly difficult for most institutions to take on such a large project as this. Another scenario would be a private collector or group of collectors purchasing the house; this could still yield some scholarship and hopefully occasional public access to the space.Westermann's example is important to the discussion on artist house museums for two reasons. First of all, in a general sense the preservation, curation, and opening to the public of the homes of prominent deceased artists is a profound educational opportunity for generations to come. There is still an overriding general sentiment out there that art and artists remain an esoteric and pompous corner of culture, and what better way to help the public learn about and begin to understand an artist and his or her work than allowing them to visit their home? There is so much that one's residence says about them and their lifestyle that a painting or sculpture could never begin to capture. Secondly, in this case[...]




Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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This week went pretty much to plan with the added bonus of a very beautiful shoot in London last night of a staircase illuminated by small LED light fittings recessed into the handrail on the stairs. I had the shoot down in Salisbury in Wiltshire during the day then drove into the West End (of London) in the evening for the night shoot. It made for a long day but the staircase looked superb I and really enjoyed photographing it. I've attached two pictures in today's blog and I'll be uploading some more pictures of the staircase onto my Flickr page over the weekend.


London is such an exciting place to work and when I finished the shoot at around 10.30pm I had a drink with my client then walked up Charing Cross Road from Leicester Square and the place was just buzzing. Soho was packed although I could only see a bit of it from my route back to the car and I really enjoyed the atmosphere.


The attached pictures were taken on the 5D MK2 with my 24mm tilt and shift lens for the medium range shot and my 17-40mm lens for the wide angle shot looking upwards. I usually correct for perspective whenever possible and this shot has converging vertical lines caused by tilting the camera back but I think it works well in this instance.


These LED lights are the future as the entire staircase was lit with 600W of energy (each LED light is only 2.2W) and in the event of a power failure the entire system runs at full brightness from a battery system!.










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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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My Volvo V50 has gone wrong again - the clutch master cylinder has broken for the second time in 6 months and I had to drive the last few miles home with the car stuck in 3rd gear!. Apart from that it was a pretty good day and it's great to be back at work.

My job today was a BUPA care home in Ipswich where I photographed the interior for a new brochure. As usual for interior photography I used the 24mm tilt and shift lens for 80% of the shots and the 24-105mm for the detail shots. The 24mm T/S lens is a real gem and I would recommend it to anyone who shoots interiors or architecture. The ability to shift the front of the lens up and down (a bit like the old view cameras with the bellows between the back and lens) means that I don't have to tilt the camera up or down at all hence removing the converging vertical lines one gets when a camera is tilted up or down from the horizontal. Canon have now added a 17mm T/S lens to their range but at £2000 plus it's a bit too dear and I'll wait until the price drops a bit once the novelty of the new lens wears off a bit.

Tomorrow I've got another interior shoot for BUPA in Gloucestershire followed by a night shoot in London so it's going to be a long and busy day. On top of that I've got to arrange a hire car while the increasingly unreliable Volvo heads back to the dealership in Milton Keynes for more repairs.

I'm hoping to do some video editing training on Wednesday with Final Cut Pro then on Thursday I've another interior shoot this time in Salisbury in Wiltshire which is cool as I love driving across to that part of the country.

I've attached a picture in today's blog from the IUCN shoot in Switzerland back in May which illustrates the use of the tilt and shift lens. Here I took a picture looking down the staircase but because I've shifted the lens down rather than tilting the camera the vertical lines still look straight and natural. I really dislike architectural pictures that have walls sloping in and although this is sometimes done for effect I'm always careful to avoid this if at all possible.




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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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I've just spent the week camping in the Cotswolds with the family and feel really refreshed and ready to go again. It was our first camping trip together and after a couple of wet days and some teething problems it all went very well. We camped at the Cotswold Farm Park near Stow on the Wold and I decided to take the Panasonic G1 camera along with us as it's small and compact but also has a good resolution and a great zoom lens. I also took along an old Canon FD lens that I use with the G1 with an adaptor and this gives top quality results too. I took a few shots of some animals around the farm with the old Canon lens and G1 and I've posted a couple to today's blog.


Next week is full which is great news. I'm looking forward to getting back to work and I'm glad I'm coming back to a really busy week.




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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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It's been a really busy week and I love that feeling you get on a Friday when you get home and feel like you've earned a good rest because you've put in a good solid week's work.


This was the busiest week I've had for a while and I spent Monday in the office doing a solid day's post shoot processing followed by a shoot at a lovely care home in Wimbledon on Tuesday. Wednesday's shoot was at another beautiful care home - this one near Devizies in Wiltshire. The drive there and back was stunning as the sun was out and I took a back road route both ways. Then yesterday I spent the day shooting some video to show the operation of a high tech lighting control system for a lighting manufacturer which was great fun and got the old brain cells working flat out as we had a storyboard to follow


Today I left home at 6am for a shoot at a large distribution warehouse in West Thurrock where we had a 7.30am start. The shoot went well and I left Thurrock at 12.30pm and headed off to Luton for my monthly radio show on BBC Three Counties radio where I do an expert hour on the Lorna Milton show. I had to be there at 2.30pm for a 2.45pm start so basically I had 2 hours to do about 30 miles. I made it into the studio with literally 30 seconds to spare before I went on thanks to a massive jam on the M25.


I've had some very kind comments on the blog from some of the readers (thanks for the feedback - it's always good to get comments on the blog) about the high dynamic range (HDR) pictures that I sometimes post. I do use HDR techniques and mainly use Photomatix to layer the various images to together but I always then open them in Photoshop and work on the pictures extensively to ensure they don't look too artificial. I've attached an example of an HDR picture to today's blog which was taken at the Wyndhams Theatre. A standard picture showing this scene would have the highlights blown out and the light fittings and chandelier would not be clearly visible.








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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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I've just got back home from a shoot in Wimbledon where I photographed a very smart retirement home for a brochure. It was an interesting old building right on the edge of the Common and apparently a lady once lived there who had an affair with King Edward 3rd so it's a very old and grand place as you can imagine. The drive home was pretty hot and stuffy though as the aircon on my Volvo V50 has broken again!.


Tomorrow I've got a shoot down in Devizies in Wiltshire which is a lovely part of the world and I always love driving in that direction (even without aircon) then I'm shooting a video in Milton Keynes on Thursday and on Friday I've got a warehouse and supermarket interior to shoot in Thurrock starting at 7.30am and then I'm on BBC Three Counties Radio in the afternoon from 2.30pm so all in all a very busy week.


I was thinking today that I haven't bought any camera kit for a couple of years now and I'm still blown away by the quality of image I'm getting from the EOS 5D MK2 and the original 5D too. I've got four L series lenses too which I've owned for a few years and I think we're arriving at a point right now where the need to continually upgrade to the latest camera is now over. I can't see me buying the next generation Canon Pro DSLR now unless something goes wrong with my existing kit or something groundbreaking comes out with say high dynamic range imaging built in but I can't see this happening for a few years yet. I think the resolution of the 5D MK2 (22MP) is enough for anyone unless you're routinely shooting full size billboard images, and for that reason I'm happy to stay with the kit I've got.


I get asked a lot by enthusiasts as to which camera to buy and my advice is always the same - buy a used DLSR body from a camera dealer with a guarantee and spend the bulk of the money on top quality second hand lenses as these really make the difference. A great lens on an 8MP camera will give a better picture than a cheap lens on a 20MP camera!.


I've attached a picture from a shoot I did at the excellent All Star Lanes boutique bowling alley in London - I'm lucky to have been commissioned by the owners to photograph all three of their venues in London and they are well worth a visit if you fancy a great night out in stylish surroundings. Here's a link to their website - http://www.allstarlanes.co.uk/
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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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OK so another good day today as I finished off all the outstanding post shoot processing including yesterday's shoot in Milton Keynes which was an interior shoot for a large private healthcare client. Then I had a meeting with a new client in Aylesbury who have now commissioned me to shoot three locations for them over the next few weeks and they are also interested in my new Redshift Media company through which I'm offering video production and also Internet marketing via Twitter, Blogger and Flickr etc.

Tomorrow I'm off to Newbury for another healthcare shoot then on Friday I'm down in Bristol photographing a new academy school so all in all a really good week.

I get the feeling that our economy is very delicately balanced at the moment and I really fear for the next couple of years and beyond because of all the cuts the government are making. I only hope I'm being paranoid and that I'm proven to be wrong but so many of my clients - both architects and manufacturers - rely on education and healthcare projects to keep going.

That's why I think we as photographers need to offer more services and therefore more value to our clients to help keep busy.

Having said that I'm very pleased that the next two months look very busy so I'm going to focus on that and keep as optimistic as possible!.

I've attached a picture to today's blog from a shoot a while back where I took a series of 6 shots from the Clifton Suspension Bridge to show a motorway section lit with street lights made by my client. I stitched the pictures together in Photoshop to create a panoramic image.


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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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Post shoot processing was the order of the day today (after a visit to the dentist!) and I finished processing all the pictures from the Talk Talk shoot and made a start on the Homebase shoot from Friday. The Talk Talk pictures look good and I'm pleased with them so hopefully the client will be pleased too. I need to keep up to date now as I'm out every day this week and next week is full too so I don't want to fall behind with the post processing. I always get a bit stressed when I know I've got a big backlog of work to catch up on so I'll be working late tonight and tomorrow to keep on schedule.


I've attached another two pictures from the Talk Talk shoot to the blog today. I noticed the reflection of the light fittings in the glass cabinet and used that to create a more interesting shot that a straight forward picture of the open plan office. I always like to use reflections when possible to add a bit of extra visual interest to the shots. I also love to use blurred people in the pictures to add a sense of scale as in the shot of the reception -to achieve this effect you need to have the camera fixed onto a sturdy tripod and use a shutter speed of around half a second. I like the blurred effect from an artistic point of view but it also means that people in the pictures aren't recognisable and therefore there isn't any hassle in terms of getting permission from them to take their photograph!.


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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

It's been a really quiet week since my last blog entry but things have just picked up again big time!. I had a shoot today in London at the new HQ of Talk Talk (broadband suppliers) who are based in Notting Hill. I made the mistake of trusting Google Maps on my Blackberry and ended up walking bloody miles around West London before realising that the stupid phone didn't have a clue as to where I was supposed to be going. Having wasted an hour walking around London W11 I gave up and got in a cab and the cabbie then got lost too and had to resort to his A-Z!.

Once I got there the shoot went really well and I took some good shots of the interior of the building for my client who supplied all the interior lighting to the building.

Tomorrow I've got two jobs - one in Esher and another in Crawley. It's going to be a long day and I've got to leave home at 6.45am but it's great to be so busy again after a quiet couple of weeks. Then for the next two weeks the diary is pretty full so happy days!.

I had another two video commissions in today which is very exciting. The video clip work seems to be really taking off and I think this will soon account for 25% of my turnover. I saw this coming with the advent of search engine optimisation whereby Google promotes web sites further up the rankings if the site contains video content. I've just finished a video for one of my best clients and I'll post it in the blog as soon as they sign it off.

Next week I'm hoping to do some more training on the video editing software called Final Cut Pro which is the hottest editing program around. At the moment I pay to have all my footage edited and I will probably carry on doing this as my workload is high enough as it is but I am keen to learn the basics in case I need to edit something quickly for a client. The files from the Canon EOS 5D MK2 that I use are very big as it records in full 1080p HD so I'd need a powerful Mac system to be able to edit these but I think it would be a worthwhile investment.

I've attached a picture from today's shoot at Talk Talk showing the linear fluorescent lighting system in the canteen - the food was great by the way!.



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First LEED Platinum Home in Virginia

Sun, 04 Jul 2010 11:02:23 PDT

This modern, award-winning abode is the first LEED Platinum home in Virginia. Located at 5803 16th Street North in Arlington, the home was built by Metro Green and designed by Kaplan Thompson Architects (the firm that also designed the popular net-zero energy Bright Built Barn). Although it's a little bigger than the ones we tend to mention -- 3,825 square feet with a tight footprint -- I think the home is worth mentioning for a number of reasons. First, annual heating and cooling costs are $180 and $125 respectively! In addition, 5803 has the following green elements: A Liveroof green roof; 1 kW array of photovoltaics;Geothermal wells and heat pump;Efficient SIPs walls and roof;Efficient spray foam insulation;High efficiency appliances;Energy recovery ventilation system;Low-VOC finishes and paints;540 gallons of rainwater cisterns;Custom nanogel curtain wall glazing;Double-glazed, argon-filled windows; andPervious paving and drought-tolerant landscaping. 5803 was designed to be efficient from the beginning. It received a HERS score of 51, Energy Star rating of 5+ Stars, and Energy Star certification for exceptional indoor air quality. Moreover, the site design features zero site runoff for a one-inch rain event. And in case you're in the market for a green home, check these links. [+] Metro Green LEED Platinum home[$] 5803 16th St North is for sale for $1.175k at Redfin. Photo credits and copyright: Parker Daniell. [...]



Oregon Shift House Seeks Passive House

Sun, 04 Jul 2010 10:58:43 PDT

Last week, Willamette Week Online published an article called "Futurehaus," which we linked to in our Saturday Week in Review. The article describes an Oregon Passive House project in the works by Root Design Build. The house is referred to as the Shift House, which, awkwardly enough, is not to be confused with the other Shift Home that we covered recently. But that's not to take anything away from it. With construction set to begin next month, upon completion in September, it'll be one of only a few certified Passive Houses in the United States. Of course, the media has been giving attention to Passive Houses, and the broader public is becoming more and more aware of the standard. Passive Houses require three main things: an airtight envelope, little to no heating and cooling energy, and minimal overall energy use. You can read about the more technical standards on the Passive House website. Root Design Build's Shift House maintains a somewhat traditional design, and the necessary energy efficiency goals will be sought by eliminating thermal bridges and using super insulation, roof overhangs, triple-pane windows, south-facing windows, concrete floors for thermal mass, and waste heat, etc. And with the tight envelope, the home requires a heat recovery ventilator to keep the air fresh. Shift House will be just over 1,700 square feet, and Root Design Build has $300,000 budgeted for construction. Although the home will have solar panels, not counting energy from the panels, the estimated yearly heating cost should be under $200, if all goes as planned. Very interesting. We'll keep you posted as the Shift House moves forward ... As a side note ... it seems popular to couch LEED criticism in praise for Passive House. Most certainly, LEED could be more rigorous in terms of energy performance, although it should be remembered that the goal of the program is market transformation. But as has been said by others, LEED and Passive House don't necessarily need to be mutually exclusive. Moreover, while Passive House zeros in on energy efficiency and tightness, LEED has a broader focus on other important environmental aspects, such as site issues, construction activity, materials and waste, water efficiency, and environmental air quality, etc. The goals and programs are slightly different. In any event, you know we'll be the first to tell you if we see a LEED Platinum Passive House.[...]



Modern Green Affordable Shift Home

Sun, 04 Jul 2010 10:54:18 PDT

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Inspired by the likes of Dwell and the 100k House, Deezine.ca and Shift Development came together with an idea. They thought it would be interesting to have a modern, green, and affordable home designed by an entire community online. Ideas are posted online and the community can make suggestions for changes. Their idea became the Shift Home. You can see how the design has changed in the past few months, but to be clear, this home is not just a thought experiment. Shift Development breaks ground in late-May, or thereabouts.

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The Shift Home will be located in Riversdale in Saskatchewan, roughly three blocks from the redevelopment of River Landing. If all goes as planned, the home will be the first LEED Canada for Homes Certified home in Saskatchewan.

The goal is to be affordable to a household income of less than $40k a year.

In addition, the philosophy for green design is to conserve first and use green technology after everything else has been done. Standard green features include a super-insulated envelope, rainwater catchment, heat recovery, triple-glazed windows, a recycling center, dual-flush toilets, and low-flow fixtures. Green upgrades include a green roof, solar thermal, and LED lighting, etc.

The final design for the envelope will be released tomorrow, but help is still needed. The Shift Home needs community insight as to interior and product selections. So get involved ...

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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

We've had quite a few new jobs in this week for July and August which is great news as July can be a quiet month for us. Looking back over the past few years June and July have always been quiet so it would be good to buck the trend and keep really busy.

This week has been pretty quiet in terms of getting out and about although I did the shoot on Monday in Peterborough and also did a small local shoot on Wednesday. I spent the rest of the week post shoot processing a lot of pictures and I'm now up to date which always feels good.

Does anyone remember the Canon FD series?. I've still got a Canon F1, A1 and T90 with a few really nice lenses but these can't be used on the newer Canon EOS cameras including the digital bodies. They can however be fitted to the Panasonic G1, GH1 and G2 cameras via a cheap adaptor and I've been using my 30+ year old lenses with my new G1 body and they are fantastic. If anyone is looking to get a small digital camera with the ability to change lenses then the G1 is a great piece of kit and it's now down to around £400 including the kit lens.

Here's the good bit - the old Canon FD lenses are dirt cheap on ebay right now and offer serious quality when compared to brand new lenses so I would recommend anyone to buy a couple of old FD lenses and put them onto one of these G1 cameras. A really clean 50mm standard lens can be found for around £20-£30 on ebay and this would work beautifully on the G1.

I'm going to shoot some pictures over the weekend on my old A1 with black and white film as I always find it liberating to shoot film and not rely too heavily on LCD screens and auto focus / auto everything digital cameras.

I've attached a picture in today's blog that I took last month at a gig in Wolverton where my nephew played drums in a band called Lower than Atlantis. I took this shot on my G1 with a lens made in 1976 (Canon FD 35mm F2) with the lens wide open at F2 and the camera ISO set at 1600. OK there is some grain but the picture is pretty sharp considering how poor the lighting was so I reckon these old Canon lenses are well worth buying while they're still cheap!.


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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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Last week was back to being full on and ultra busy again which is great news and I therefore spent most of the weekend post processing pictures in an attempt to get up to date. I'm pretty much there now although I did have a small shoot near Peterborough this morning which I'll need to work through later tonight.
I had some good feedback today from one of my new clients (the guys who commissioned me to photograph the two large construction sites last week) and it's always great to hear that any client is happy - especially a new one. I've posted a picture from the Bromley By Bow site photography in today's blog.
Work is still hard to find at the moment and I feel lucky that I've managed to keep so busy. Many photographers seem to be very light on work and I'm very grateful to all our regular clients for the continued flow of commissions. Hopefully though the economy will start to really pick up again within the next few months making life a bit easier for every one!.
I like to recommend websites in the blog and today I'm going to give a big thumbs up for photo.net. I love this website and it's free to join which is an added incentive to try it out. You can post questions about all aspects of photography into the forum and also post up your work for critique - here's the link - http://photo.net/
As mentioned above here's a picture from the construction site last week. The brief was to capture all aspects of the building process from foundations to finished flats as the site is huge and has each stage of development going on right now. The shot I've posted is illustrating the health and safety aspect of the site and shows an inspector and the site manager looking over the builders working up on the top of the block of flats. I took the picture with my original EOS5D (not the MK2) and used a lot of fill flash to try to even out the harsh full sunlight.



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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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Another early start today as I headed up to London for a couple of jobs with my super duper assistant Kirsty. The first job was a corporate headshot which the client wanted on a bright white backdrop. As we were travelling by train I tried to keep all the kit to a minimum but I still needed two camera bags, a tripod bag, a large softbox bag and a very heavy case containing two Bowens flash heads. For the first job I set up the large 6ft x 4ft softbox to act as an illuminated background and used the second flash head as the main light with a silver brolly. I haven't used a brolly for years but it fitted into the tripod bag along with the two lighting stands very well and in fact the lighting looked really crisp so I was very pleased with the setup. I metered the main light source to F8 and metered the large softbox (illuminated background) to F13 giving me a two stop difference between the subject and backdrop which made the rear softbox appear to be perfect white behind the guy I was photographing.

The second job was in the Zetter Hotel in Clerkenwell and the client wanted candid action shots of a meeting of architects and designers discussing lighting design in buildings. The pictures will appear in Lighting magazine alongside some transcripts of the discussion that took place.

The meeting was in the basement and the lighting was very dim and dark (rather unfortunate considering the topic of discussion!) in the room so we needed to use some fill flash (via a Speedlight mounted on the camera hotshoe) which we fitted with diffusers and bounced off the ceiling to minimise shadows. The ISO still needed to be set to 800 and the shutter dragged a bit at 1/30th sec to allow enough of the room behind the subjects to read through which avoids that horrible look you sometimes see in Hello magazine etc where the subject is lit with harsh flash and the background is pure black!.

The third job that was pencilled in for tonight has been postponed until next week which was probably a good thing considering how much gear we had to carry around in all that heat.

Tomorrow I'm going to make a start on the mountain of post shoot processing that I have to do and I'm really keen to get at least two jobs out before the close of play.

I've attached a picture of me from the shoot in East London yesterday in an inspection cage hanging below a crane 80m above a building site - I'm not great at heights but I actually enjoyed this strangely enough!.




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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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Today's shoot in Milton Keynes began at 8am and I didn't finish shooting until 6pm. I was photographing the new housing development at Campbell Square in Central Milton Keynes and my client (who attended the shoot) had a concise brief which meant photographing the various stages of construction on the site. We had some professional models booked to play the part of happy flat owners etc for the shots of the completed flats and the day went really well despite the heat!. The Bowens Travel Pak came to the rescue again today as I needed some powerful flash inside some of the unfinished apartments and the 240V supply wasn't in use so I ran the flash off the battery pack. I also used it outside to provide some fill for the shots in direct sunlight to help reduce the harsh shadows caused by shooting beneath a harsh sun.


Tomorrow I've got a similar shoot in Bromley By Bow (East London) for the same client where we're photographing a building site with various levels of completion. We're starting at 8am again but this time the early start is due to the England match as we think the site will be empty come 3pm.


Thursday is also really busy as I have two small jobs in the morning and an evening shoot - all in Central London. The first job is a basic head shot (portrait) for a website which I'm taking on location in the City, then I'm photographing a small debate from late morning until just after lunch for Lighting magazine. The evening job is a mix of both stills and video and it's of the BT Tower where I need to capture the new LED TV screens right at the top of the tower.


I'm due to be editing some video on Friday too so that makes for a busy week.

Today's picture was taken for the company that made the new street lighting in Central Milton Keynes - War of the Worlds anyone?.




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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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What a beautiful day we've had today - bright sunshine and a cool breeze..perfect unless your outside taking location shots of some lighting bollards!. It just goes to prove that photographers are a bit like gardeners when it comes to the weather - we're never satisfied!.

I spent the day at Horwood House shooting some brand new lighting bollards which we placed in situ around the gardens and pathways for a catalogue. The direct sunlight was very harsh so I used a 6ft x 4ft diffusing panel which I bought from Calumet a few weeks ago. The panel worked very well in softening the light especially with the chrome finish bollards.

Tomorrow I've got an interior shoot in Peterborough for a new client so I'll take two diffusing panels just in case I need to calm down any daylight spilling in through the windows. I'll also take a flash head or two in case I need to add some fill as I'm photographing hotel bedrooms and they can be very difficult to photograph with dark finishes and bright windows creating a really high contrast range of tones.

I've had a steady stream of new work coming in and we've taken on a few new clients in the past month which is really great news, but I get the feeling companies are still watching their pennies and the economy still has a long way to go before we get clear of this terrible recession. There is still work out there to be had but it's getting harder to find and anyone that sits back on their laurels and doesn't really push to get new clients will find the going very tough. I'm using things like Twitter, Linked In, Facebook, Flickr and this blog to keep my profile as high as possible just to keep things moving along. The radio show I do once a month on BBC Radio Three Counties should be helping too although I never get any work directly from it.

I've found an interesting site called Stumble which is free to join and it basically allows you to type in a topic - say photography - then stumble on new sites with a click of the mouse button. The more sites you rate and stumble upon the more powerful the site becomes - check it out and see for yourself - it's pretty cool. Here's the link http://www.stumbleupon.com/home/

Today's picture is from the shoot with Annalie that I did a couple of weeks ago.




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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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I'm still wondering how Rob Green let that goal in on Saturday night against the USA!. I started off as a sports photographer back in the late eighties and I've witnessed some big howlers in my time but that one really tops it all. I hope that both England and the USA can get through the group but it looks like Slovenia have stolen a march on us with their win over Algeria.I'm just hoping we don't slip up on Friday again the Algerians - to be honest nothing would surprise me!.

Anyway today I'm currently post processing around 90 product photographs that I took of an office chair for one of my best clients. We're going to use them to create a flickbook style movie showing all the operations of the chair. We recorded the voice over a few days ago and now I need to clean up all the shots and get them over to my editor to finalise the clip. As soon as it's finished I'll upload it to the blog.

I've had another new job in this morning which is a shoot of the BT Tower at night as the top of the tower features some state of the art colour changing LED projectors. I'll be shooting both video and stills and I'm hoping to get access to a couple of roof tops for a better angle on the tower itself. I'll also look to get some street scenes with the tower featuring in the background and I think a video should work very well as I'll be able to capture a flavour of London life at night.

I'm now 99% sure that I'm going to invest in a Mac as I'm doing more video than ever and Final Cut Pro seems to be the program of choice for editing the 5D MK2 footage and it's only available on the Mac. I'm doing some Final Cut Pro training tomorrow to see if I can understand the way the software work - if it feels good and intuitive I'll bite the bullet and go for it.

I'm using Flickr more and more to promote my work these days as it is faster and easier to access than our website. If anyone gets a minute please take a look and let me know what you think - here's the link http://www.flickr.com/photos/redshiftphoto/

Here's link to the final video of the IUCN HQ in Gland Switzerland using my stills and video footage that I took over two visits to site. The editing is superb and was done by Future Labs in Sweden - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TAAy5ksS8No

I've posted a picture in today's blog from a shoot at 5 Aldermansbury Square in London - a dusk shot to show the effect of the accent lighting in the reception area.







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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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The drive up to Leeds and back yesterday was pretty tiring due to some really bad weather but the meeting went really well and I've got a new client with a lot of upcoming work!. The first job for them is next week over in Peterborough. Although work ahas slowed down in the past three months I am getting a lot of enquiries from new clients so I'm sure things are on the up.

I've been post processing the shoot from S Lucas group's new HQ this morning and I'm about to head over to my video editing guy to get the clips that I took there edited into a movie along with some still images and interviews. Video is the way forward I think as more clients want clips on their websites and to post onto You Tube.

I cleaned the sensor on my 5D MK2 yesterday before the video shoot as I've noticed a few nasty marks appearing on the video footage recently. That's easy to cure with still photographs by using the clone tool in Photoshop but with video it is a real problem and takes hours to remove. I need to make sure I clean the sensor regularly to avoid this hassle in the future. It's a bit daunting at first swabbing a sensor in a £2,000 camera but after a while you get quite bold and just go for it.

I've posted a picture in today's blog from the IUCN HQ shoot in Switzerland that I took last month. This is the most environmentally friendly and sustainable building in the world and the video footage and stills I took over two visits have now been edited into a 9 minute video (superbly edited by Future Labs in Sweden!). The video is now finished and on Youtube - here's the link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TAAy5ksS8No

The picture I've posted is a portrait of the Architect Hanspeter Oester of AGPS Architects in Zurich.





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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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I spent the morning shooting some video interviews and some footage of an office interior for a short film I'm making for an office furniture company along with some stills for their website. OK so it's not Avatar but it's been great fun and I'm looking forward to editing the footage on Thursday and Friday!. Some of the footage is a little over exposed - the 5D MK2 is a fantastic camera for stills and video but the LCD screen can be a little misleading when it comes to reviewing footage - I should have put a test clip onto the laptop to check for brightness etc but never mind, I can pull it back slightly in post production.

Then I drove over to my client's showroom near Heathrow and photographed a new office desk (it was too big to take to the studio) and I'll need to cut the desk out and drop it onto a plain background in Photoshop to make it look like a proper studio shot. Sometimes this needs to be done but it's much easier to shoot things in the studio and capture the whole image in one go.

Tomorrow I'm driving up to Leeds for a meeting with another potential new client and there's the chance of a lot of work from them so I'm keeping my fingers crossed that everything goes to plan.

I've attached a shot from the shoot at Ropemaker Street from a few weeks ago because I've just included the shot in a PDF portfolio and I really like the feel of the picture with the blurred figure adding some dimension.





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Tue, 10 Aug 2010 15:04:40 PDT

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Hi Everyone - Has anyone had a problem accessing the blog lately?. If so please drop me a note via email or via the comments box. I've had some odd emails in today saying my blog is sending out spam but I can't see a problem anywhere here so it's probably yet another scam!.

The internet is so full of people trying to scam you or wreck your website and blog - you'd think they'd have other things to worry about!.

Anyway today was a great day as I had a meeting with a potential new client and came away with two jobs and the promise of more to come if everything goes well. Work is harder to find right now so that's great news.

Tomorrow I've got a video and stills shoot in London followed by a product shoot in the afternoon at one of my customer's showroom near Heathrow.

Then on Wednesday I've got another meeting with a potential new client so I'm hoping this week is going to be a good indicator of things to come!.

I've attached a picture from the shoot at Ozwald Boateng last week. This was on yesterday's entry but I deleted the entire entry after these emails arrived this morning re the spam.

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