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#FeelGoodPhotoOfTheDay – On The Clock

On The Clock

#FeelGoodPhotoOfTheDay – On The Clock

On The Clock

Life continuing
Although the clock is ticking
Moment to moment

Haiku co-written in conversation with Julia K

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Dispersion and Twirls in Photoshop

Set The Music Free 3

Dispersion and Twirls in Photoshop

With the current restrictions on going outdoors, many photographers are using this time to go through their back catalogues and learn new techniques. I am part of the fantastic SheClicks community for female photographers. Last week one member shared her experiments with the Twirl technique. I will add links to YouTube tutorials for both techniques at the end!

By the end of the week, we were all hooked! Between us all, I think we could fill a few galleries with these fun abstract pieces. You can also use the twirled images as overlays or textures. Some members used the effect to create an abstract background, revealing a part of the main image through masked layers. I loved some of the peacock twirls that others had done so I thought I’d have a go too! Here are my before and after images.

I decided this was the perfect time to finally learn a technique that I have wanted to do for years! The dispersion technique can be used to great effect to make your subject appear to be disintegrating, or exploding outwards. It’s a fun way to create a story for a portrait shoot. I went back to some images I made last year with my dear friend, singer-songwriter, Julia K. I’ll start with a simple edit where I have kept the background clean and simple. The act of singing appears to be reverent, a prayer to the gods.

Julia K

Initially we wanted to visualise sound through shapes and movement. It was a great opportunity to use long exposure and light-painting to frame a story within my images. We took inspiration from the name of her studios, Firespark, and brought in some indoor sparklers and fireworks. Yes, we did set off the fire alarm a couple of times! It’s such a joy to be able to work with a fellow creative, just exploring different ideas, even if they do sound a bit bonkers.

Firespark

I wanted Julia to be static in the images, with the sound emanating from her and surrounding her. We tried a number of different poses that allowed me to create in-camera double-exposures, as well as single images that I could turn into composites within Photoshop. Both techniques are creatively satisfying with similar, yet distinctive results. In-camera multiple exposures always have a more organic feel to them. Creating a composite using Photoshop gives you a much crisper end result. In these three edits of my image of Julia, you can now see why I had her looking up into the space above her. The spirit of music is reaching out to her.

I think I was attracted to the dispersion technique because it brings back that organic feel to a digitally created composite! In addition to using dispersion, I also brought in some overlays of musical notes that I warped, to give them a sense of movement as they explode out from the microphone. Including a bit of texture, with an overlay to the background, added to the organic feel I was looking for. I made three final images for Julia to choose from; full colour, monochrome and selective colour, that revealed the vibrant red against the black and white. Selective colour is very much Julia’s signature look, her brand. I knew she’d choose that one, but which look do you prefer?

I have called this piece Set The Music Free. It’s given me inspiration for creating more stories from other images in my back catalogue, as well as some future projects that I really hope to be able to do with Julia in the future! I hope this has given some of you a bit of inspiration to learn some new techniques and keep creative during this turbulent time. You can learn how to do these two techniques in the following video tutorials. Have fun with them!

Twirling:

Dispersion:

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ShareMonday2020 – Songbird Of Shadows

Songbird of Shadows

ShareMonday2020 – Songbird Of Shadows

Happy New Year everyone! A new ShareMondays tag and my favourite muse to start it all off. Happy Birthday to the wonderful Julia K, dressed as Brandon Lee (aka The Crow) for her Dead Famous party on Saturday night. She’s singing I’m In Love With A German Film Star with purity and passion, well, one of The Passions in fact, Clive Timperley on guitar! What a great party and I absolutely loved hearing two dear friends performing this beautiful and haunting song together. Thank you both!

Clive

Video by my wonderful hubby, Simon Williams!

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Under The Spotlight

Julia K performing with The Diamond Hearts

Under The Spotlight

My dear friend and muse, Julia K, performing with her 80’s music band, The Diamond Hearts on Saturday evening. So much emotion conveyed in her performances! Her passion for the music she performs is palpable. The Diamond Hearts capture the hearts of their audiences wherever they perform! This high contrast mono is my entry to this week’s Fotospeed challenge. I hope that everyone out there is as entranced by Julia as her audiences (and friends!) are! If you would like to find out more about the band, or make a booking for an event please visit The Diamond Hearts

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Amy

Amy Turk

Amy

Have I mentioned all the amazing musicians and creatives that I am blessed to know? Maybe once or twice 😉 Yesterday brought a few of us together at my friend, Julia’s, studio and rehearsal space for the filming of Amy Turk’s forthcoming YouTube release. I brought the studio backdrop, captured a few stills, Julia and Simon cooked a Tagine, Ben and John filmed and Amy provided the day’s soundtrack on harp. I love watching Amy play. It’s seemingly effortless and absolutely mesmerising. Her arms and hands flow through the moves of some graceful ballet and the music follows her lead. I love photographing musicians performing live, as it gives me a way to try to capture the essence and emotion of their performance, the connection between artist and instrument. So this is Amy, captured while lost in the music, in harmony with her harp. I’m putting this into this week’s Fotospeed challenge and I hope everyone will be enchanted and intrigued to follow this LINK for Amy’s YouTube channel. The new video will be aired very soon! I hope to be bringing more news from Julia K’s Firespark Records and Studios soon.

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Zigzag

Zigzag

Weekly Photo Challenge: Zigzag

I have to thank my friend Julia K for providing the subject matter and inspiration for this week’s challenge! Julia has long been a fan of my abstract work, her words of encouragement and genuine delight are succour to this artist’s soul.

Julia recently completed work on her own music-recording studio and rehearsal room. It’s truly fantastic! I just love some of the finishing touches too, like these antique-style, zigzag light bulbs! I had great fun with these manual focus, macro shots and the post-processing in Lightroom. If any of you were curious about my Silent Sunday image, it was a defocussed photo of one of these bulbs! I love painting with light 🙂

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Work Of Art – Julia K

Weekly Photo Challenge: Work Of Art - Julia K

Weekly Photo Challenge: Work Of Art

Michelle says “When someone says “art,” they often use it as shorthand for “paintings and sculptures.” Art is everywhere, though: in nature, in architecture, in literature, and more. It’s anywhere we see beauty and meaning.”

I couldn’t agree more! I see art and beauty everywhere I look. One of my great joys in life is working alongside other like-minded artists, like Julia K. Julia is a wonderful singer/songwriter who is also my friend, my muse and my collaborator!

My favourite collaboration with Julia, so far, has been the creation of the video for Julia’s song “Strong” which I directed. We also held an exhibition with fellow photographer Tom O’Donoghue, culminating in an intimate concert in the medieval Undercroft in Guildford.

My featured image is the cover artwork for the single which is available on Amazon and iTunes. The photos in the gallery tell the story of the making of a music video. From the tranquil and beautiful setting of Fleet Pond on a very chilly February morning to the fabulous interior of the converted mansion at South Hill Park.

Finally, our work or art is the video itself. We hope you enjoy it! Look out for my dad’s artwork used as props too 🙂

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Perspective #1

Weekly Photo Challenge: Perspective #1

Weekly Photo Challenge: Perspective #1

Reading Ash’s description for this weeks challenge I actually felt that it was very much about how the photographer can influence the viewer’s perception with different photographic techniques.

That could include the angle or perspective at which the photograph is taken from, or how cropping an image to exclude part of the original can change the story that the viewer may interpret.

The theme itself is wide open to interpretation! One thing that sprang to mind is how I use my camera, lenses, filters and processing techniques to produce promotional images for bands and musicians.

It’s very important for people who view these musicians websites, or see flyers, to be able to get a feel for the style of music that they can expect. I try my best to convey that within my work!

In this example, my featured photograph is of Julia K, who, amongst her many musical projects, is a vocalist and keytar player for 80’s band, The Diamond Hearts. The band have done all their own styling but I wanted to add an extra 80’s twist with crisp lighting and a retro, prismatic filter. When people see this particular photo of Julia, I hope to make them think of strong female vocalists, such as Kate Bush and Annie Lennox.

Here are a few other photos from The Diamond Hearts photoshoot! Enjoy 🙂