A Window of Opportunity? – Yes!
I was recently commissioned to photograph an Oxford college building within a building which was a novel experience for me.
As you’ll see from the finished images, the building had recently been subject to an impressive update.
The architects were very sensitive to the age and historic provenance of the college building, and designed a very contemporary yet complimentary array of practical features and spaces that enhanced the traditional areas of the building to great effect.
The window of opportunity in question was a 2 hour slot (yes that’s 2 hours only) and a once only offer that my clients gained clearance for. It was up to me to set-up, compose and take my shots and get out again before the college personnel needed to go back into the space.
Pressure? No problem – I’ve worked on this kind of assignment before and although I feel the tension of the minutes ticking away, my interior image experience gives me the confidence to get the job done creatively, accurately and speedily.
As is often the case with interior work, the room dimensions prevented me from including the entire scene.
My post-production skills enabled me to create a set of high quality, useful, representative images.
It’s a hard job – but someone’s got to do it…
Oxford is known the world over, not only for its academe but for the river punts and rowing boats that students and the general public can enjoy throughout the Summer season.
Lucky me – I was asked to produce a collection of images for a local company who offer punts, rowing boats and pedalos for hire, plus a Punt Chauffeur service for those who just want to languish on the river for half an hour with no concerns about other boats, balance or buoys!
Determined to portray a variety of river born experiences, my creative eye was working overtime with the strong verticals and horizontals in the subject matter as well as my ‘models’ so I was dealing with poles, punts and people on moving water!
The river is lovely but to be perfectly frank, the water colour was a bit murky on the day so I needed to find a way to capture the mood without featuring too much green water. The boats are quite colourful so I knew that the reflections of that colour in the water would work to my advantage as shown in the blue rowing boat image. Again in the image of the punts in waiting with the lone punt chauffeur in action, the bright red in the boat and the angles of the objects all heading towards the centre of the two bridge arches capture the overall scene in its Oxford context very nicely. The sky blue reflection in the water fragments the green water to great effect.
The two punts on the water are accentuated by the tree branch in the foreground and the water in this image is almost metallic. The human eye knows it’s water but the colour is silvery creating an ‘arty’ effect.
My shot of a beautiful woman pensively trailing her fingers in the river water sums up the magic of a being in a punt on an English river. Note also the straw boater in this quintessentially English scene, and thank you to the model for getting into the zone.
Industrial photography – a thing of beauty
I like nothing more than to use my photographic skills in an industrial setting, be it in a workshop or manufacturing plant, high or low tech, it’s all great to me.
I was recently invited to take some shots of a laser marking machine. The machine is a large one and so needed to be photographed in situ. It was important to keep it in its commercial setting but of course there is usually a mass of distracting background to work with.
In order to make the machine zing out, I use a technique that knocks back the background to grey.
When in action, the machine comes to life with an interesting array of lights inside it creating a strong visual contrast to its exterior. You can see 3 good examples of the technique here.
Please give me a ring or email me through the web site to discuss your project.