LENS BABY TULIPS

I’ve been doing a bit of archiving / cataloguing while watching the rain run down the window. I found a little batch of florals I’d shot with my lens baby. It was a few years ago and I can’t remember which lens it was, but I remember it was a lot of fun. The lens now languishes forgotten in a cupboard somewhere, so I think it’s time I found it and learnt how to use it properly.

THE DANDY

It’s been a long time since I did any work in Photoshop and Lightroom, so I spent a pleasant afternoon yesterday on this studio portrait from just over a year ago at Studio 3 by Severn. It helped that the sun was shining briefly and for a short period of time I could imagine I was indoors by choice.

FLORA

A little bit of vibrant colour for a grey, November day. I called this Flora for fairly obvious reasons. We had a lot of fun making the model’s hair fly out like that, although I think she was a tad dizzy by the time we’d finished.

AND NEVER FORGET

CLOWNS TO THE LEFT OF ME …

I’ve heard it said that some people are frightened of clowns. There’s even a term for it – coulrophobia. I’ve never subscribed to this idea myself. They’re just kindly old men entertaining folks at children’s parties and at circuses… aren’t they?

TEARS OF A CLOWN
BRING IN THE CLOWNS
THE THREAT
NO MORE MR NICE GUY

DESOLATION

DESOLATION

This photograph was one of my early successes on the FIAP competition circuit, winning gold, silver and bronze medals. This came as a bit of a surprise to me as the shoot had verged on disaster. The model, whose name I have forgotten, was from one of the Eastern European countries and had only a very few words of English, so communications were difficult to say the least. She had a repertoire of practised poses which she persisted in adopting, in spite of my repeated cries of, “No, please no.” I guess she was equally frustrated as she watched this septuagenarian capering about trying to emulate the poses I wanted, in a weird geriatric version of charades. How we arrived at this pose, I have no idea. I think I had just given up on trying to establish any kind of connection and was allowing her to do her thing. Turns out she knew best, after all.

SUMMER STUFF

A small sample of the fantastic little mini-beasts we saw this summer, all observed at either Chambers Farm Wood, Lincolnshire, or at Skylarks Nature Reserve, Nottingham.

Elephant Hawk Moth (deilephila elpenor), caterpillar and moth. Hard to believe the little fellow on the left will encase itself in a pupa and hibernate all winter under leaf litter to emerge next summer as the glorious moth on the right.

Four Banded Longhorn Beetle (leptura quadrifasciata)

Latticed Heath Moth (chiasmia clathrata)

One of my favourite British butterflies, the Marbled White (melanargia galathea).

White-tailed Bumblebee (bombus locorum)

Green Shield Bug (palomena prasina), also known as a Green Stink Bug.

QUIET REFLECTIONS

So, it’s taken me just over a month to get round to my second post on here. I feel a little in limbo as, previously, my photography was driven by setting up studio sessions to shoot the base shots for my fantasy creations and, in so doing, I met new models which led to some interesting portraits. I know some photographers have ventured back into the studio but, at nearly eighty and with Covid-19 still on the rampage, I’m not willing to do that.
I love walking in Nature Reserves in the East Midlands of the UK, photographing butterflies and insects in the summer and birds in the winter. The summer was fairly pleasant as Jan and I managed quite a few walks in the sunshine and managed to socially distance quite easily. However, now the days are closing in, we are finding that some of our favourite places have reduced their hours meaning that, for the shorter time they are open, the trails are more crowded.
A change of direction is obviously called for, something I can manage under the present restraints. Hmm, this calls for a bit of reflection, which takes me on nicely to today’s picture, Quiet Reflections, pulled at random from my archives. Coincidentally, it also features Rachelle Summers. I had hoped to line up the glass in such a way that I could shoot straight through it and achieve the effect you see here. I failed miserably and had to shoot the whole thing in bits, to be cobbled together afterwards in Photoshop with the addition of some texturing.

AS THE CROW FLIES

Welcome to the latest incarnation of my photographic blog.
Like most people, my life changed quite a bit when Covid-19 reared its ugly head. No more going to the races, an end to going out to Georges’s for fish and chips and, more importantly, it brought my involvement in the world of Camera Club photography to an end.
My camera club membership will lapse at the end of this year and, sadly, I won’t be renewing it as I just can’t bring myself to make friends with Zoom. As I am now galloping towards being an Octogenarian and not having recourse to a crystal ball to check on the demise of this pesky pandemic, I have also retired from my judging duties which I will miss enormously, as I met very many lovely people and had a lot of fun along the way.
So there we are, or rather, here I am.
As there’s no fun in a blog post without a picture, I leave you with an old favourite of mine, As the Crow Flies, featuring professional model Rachelle Summers and a lovely crow I saw on one of my nature rambles.

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