Tuesday, November 05, 2019

One site you should visit if you are passionate about photography

When I started out in photography there was no internet, no smartphones and no personal computers. If you wanted to advance your knowledge about all things related to photography you either read magazines and books or you joined a photography club. If you were lucky, as I was, you met someone who was a 'professional' photographer who was willing to share their knowledge and experience with you. In my case I became friends with someone who was older than me who was an experienced photographer who was studying for an MA in Photography. He also had his own darkroom, something I took full advantage of. I learned a tremendous amount from him, and his wife too, who was herself a theatre set designer. They not only shared their knowledge about photography, art and the creative arts but encouraged me and gave positive feedback on my images.

So, where is this all leading? Well, today we have a whole world of resources available to us as photographers. Yes we still have books and magazines, photography clubs and courses but we also have the world wide web. In many ways there is just too much information out there and at times it is difficult to sort the frankly rubbish out from the really useful stuff. How does one effectively get the most out of what is available on web sites, YouTube, Vimeo, Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram and the many other platforms out there?

Well, I have a suggestion. Visit LensCulture 

As you can see from the screenshot, LensCulture has been around 15 years, involves millions of photographers from around the whole world and provides lots of resources for photographers. More importantly, it's a place you can receive positive feedback on your photography from other photographers, gallery owners and other creative professionals. For me this is the greatest resource the site offers. It's not easy to get a professional portfolio review unless you are studying photography at an institution or have an agent but when you enter competitions on the LensCulture site you get a comprehensive portfolio review of your submission. If you would like to read the review of my own portfolio to see an example of what you get you can read it here.

LensCulture also has free resources including guides. Currently you can download a free guide on how to get the most out of competitions. You can download it here

LensCulture also has plenty of inspirational articles showcasing the work of photographers from all over the world. There are also book reviews and interviews and publish The Best of LensCulture  book annually which showcases dozens of photographers. All of this can help you develop your own photography and discover your own style. If you visit one site today I recommend you visit LensCulture.

Finally, Luminar 4 is coming soon and if you would like to benefit from pre-order bonuses then click on the image below.

Pre-orders include a bonus one-year plan to SmugMug (worth US$180) and costs US$79 for a new purchase and US$69 for an upgrade. When released on November 18, the price will jump to US$89 new and US$69 for an upgrade.

Declaration: I am a beta-tester for Luminar 4 and an affiliate. By clicking on the image above I will receive a small payment if you pre-order Luminar 4. I use Luminar 4 myself and although I use Adobe Creative Cloud not every photographer has access to it and indeed needs all the tools Photoshop and Lightroom offer. In that case you may well find Luminar offers everything you need in an easy to use, affordable package that nevertheless has a whole toolbox that can help take your photography to the next level.

Monday, November 04, 2019

Pembrokeshire, Wales is a stunning location for photography.

Recently I went on a week's holiday with a friend to Pembrokeshire, Wales (sadly cut short due to me going down to a nasty throat and chest infection). We went hoping to get some decent photographs of the local landscape and wildlife and were planning a boat trip around Ramsey Island.

We stayed in an Airbnb near Haverfordwest that was a working farm and at the start of the week the weather was good. After a few days the weather took a turn for the worse, as did my health, but we did manage to get some nice images before that happened and to enjoy some Welsh hospitality.

Pembrokeshire Coast National Park has lots to offer all year round including fantastic scenery with fabulous beaches, rocky coves, surfing hotspots, heritage sites such as St David's Cathedral, castles and Neolithic monuments.

St David's Cathedral
Here is a shot of St David's Cathedral which dates back to the 12th Century. It is well worth a visit and whilst there we attended a Sunday morning service which was not only beautiful but very uplifting. St David's (the city) is small place named after the patron saint of Wales, Saint David. The place's history goes back to the 5th century, when St David lived there.

Porth Clais

Porth Clais is a pretty little harbour on the south-western tip of the St David’s Peninsula. Once a trading port alive with industry, nowadays it’s a popular spot for kayakers, small boat owners and captivating coastal walks.

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