Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Recent wedding.

Here are a few pics from a recent wedding.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Dr Who.

Back in April I hinted we hadn't seen the end of the Master (played by John Simms) I can now reveal he will be returning for a 2 part Christmas special.

Friday, July 24, 2009

First flight over the channel.

It's a hundred years ago today that Louis BlĂ©riot (1 July 1872 – 2 August 1936) crossed the English channel.
Flying is something we take for granted today, in 1909 however it was a different proposition, aircraft were in their infancy, nobody had ever successfully crossed a large body of water.
Louis couldn't even swim, and he was injured from an earlier accident. The trip of just 22 miles took a staggering 37 minutes due to the poor weather and wind.
It's increadable to think that just 60 years later man landed on the Moon, and now only a 100 years later they are talking of going to Mars.

Topaz Denoise.

The people at Topaz labs have brought out a new version of Denoise, in use it's fairly simple to figure out, theres presets to get you going and sliders to "tweek" the ajustments.
See before and after pic.

Does it work, well yes it's not bad, although personally I find it's default setting too heavy, it seems to over soften, I also noticed it prone to jpeg artifacts if you over ajust the sliders. For me it's not as good as as my favorite Noiseware pro.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Asian Wedding.

Over the years I have done a lot of weddings, hundreds easily, but never an Asian wedding..... until this week that was.
On the weekend a mate asked me to cover his sisters wedding, a bit short notice but I said yes, an Asian wedding lasts several days, and the hospitality in legendary, I certainly didn't go hungry!
Here are a few pics, I haven't started the editing properly so these are just a few rough shots from the extracted jpegs (I shot in RAW format) Enjoy. Wayne

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

On One Skin Tune 2

Another product by the OnOne people is skin tune 2, designed to make getting the skin tone right easier. In use it couldn't really be much simpler, you just click on a medium skin tone in your image, choose from the drop down options for skin colour (5 or 6 choices) fine tune a few sliders and the jobs done, in practice it's not quite so simple, as you have to chose the "medium" skin tone there's an element of getting it wrong, secondly as with Colour Tune there's no real way of batching images.

Motorway signs.

Over the last few days I have done a fair bit of motorway driving, and I couldn't help noticing the huge lit up signs there on the M4 near where I live. Recently I passed one in the pouring, tropical monsoon type rain, it said "surface water! What... a wet road... in the pouring rain, and I never noticed? What a waste of space, if drivers can't tell the roads might have water on them in the pouring rain then quite frankly they shouldn't be driving.
Another regular on my local sign is "don't drink and drive" Trouble is I'm halfway down the motorway when I see it, bit late really if I have been drinking, obviously I have to be driving to see the sign, maybe if they put them in pub car parks that would make more sense, and cut road accidents.
Incidentally I don't drink and drive, and I really don't agree with the idiots that do and think it's clever, it's dangerous, ordinary driving is bad enough, doing it when your rat arsed is lethal.

Monday, July 20, 2009


I don't take a lot of what could be called natural history type shots, just not that bothered about bugs and stuff (unless they are biting me) but over the last few days I seem to be falling over critters everywhere I go.
So heres a few, a butterfly, a seagull and a sort of fake bee type thing. These were shot on two different day, sadly on neither did I actually have my proper macro lens with me.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Some recent black and white shots.

Here are a few recent black and white shots taken at a wedding, the two guys are part of a samba band (and very good it was as well) the building is the venue, it's not the biggest of places inside I have to say, indeed I wasn't sure whether to go inside or put it on!

On One Colourtune 2

OnOne make a number of different photo soft wares, Colourtune 2 is claimed to be a simple way of fixing basic colour and exposure problems. In practice it's simple to use, when you open it you have 2 different versions of your image, you simple pick the one you prefer, there's one slider to increase or decrease the amount of the difference between images, you click the one you like and it change to the next version, six clicks later your on the final ajustment page (shown in the pic) this has more ajustment sliders for fine tuning.

While it works fairly well, I have to add there are issues with it, one is the fact it's very subjective to your eye, your making all the choices, if your colour vision is out or your monitors not callibrated your going to get colour casts when viewed by others. The other problem for me is theres no obvious way of batch ajusting images, 8 clicks (including saving) and ajusting sliders for each and every image is going to be a nightmare if you have more that a few pics to sort out.

Friday, July 17, 2009


What a rotten few days, talk about rain. One bloke I know got his photographic studio flooded last week, how he's managing this week I dread to think, probably swimming by now.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Swansea marina.

Here are a few recent shots of Swansea marina, it's changed a lot recently, I was eyeing up the crane, bet theres a cracking view from the top, it's a 100 meters high, I'd love to nip up that.

Sin City.

You get some unusual requests as a photographer, most are legal some are physically impossible (thank goodness!) Fortunately this request was both legal and possible.

I was asked to make a couples wedding photo look like a Sin City cartoon, for those of you who don't know (and I was one) Sin city was a series of cartoons written by Frank Miller, I'm told they are dark and moody and set in heavy rain.

Now none of that is ideal for a wedding couple, but if thats what they want, thats what they get.


Monday, July 13, 2009


The Olympics are getting closer, they may well prove interesting for all the wrong reasons.
We now live in PC Briton, I can't help wondering what health and safety will make of the games?
I mean throwing the javelin, near people... your joking of course! It will have to have a rubber tip in case it hits anybody, and you'll need third party insurance in case there's a claim.
The shot put, no chance mate, throwing a big heavy weight around, far too risky, maybe a Frisbee instead? then you'll only need safety glasses and hard hats.
Even the starters at risk, first time he pull out the starting gun the armed police will shoot him, probably improves things to be honest. The Olympic flames got to be a fire hazard , then there's the pollution and fumes from it, not to mention the environmental damage.
And my person favorite, the hurdles, definitely a trip hazard, you'd need ramps at the very least.
Those coupled with the terrorist threats, the tube strikes and heaven knows what else should make it an interesting games.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Swansea air show.

Today was the Swansea airshow, here are a few pics from it, one I have called "bombers moon"
Enjoy. Wayne

Celebrity news

Celebrity news hot off the press. Katie Price (aka Jordan) says "I'm back on the market" sadly she doesn't say what market, (Swansea market perhaps?).
I suspect she means the dating market, well good news and bad news Jordan, the good news is I'm still single. The bad news... I wouldn't touch you with a ten foot pole love.

Michael Jacksons back in the news, it seems his sister (remember we never actually saw them together!) now claims he was murdered for his money, perhaps one of his monkey butlers wanted a raise? As the LA police are investigating this, and they had a running battle with Jackson over the child abuse allegations, I can't help feeling that they may not find anything, it depends on how hard they look I suppose.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Transformers 2 (film review)

We watched Transformers 2 last week, so I'll give it the brief "Wayne" review.
The film is a follow up to the earlier film, it runs around 2 hours 20 minutes, and the computer animation/CGI is pretty impressive, however I can't argree with Steven Speilberg about it being the best film ever.
Yes it's good, and I'm sure children/teenages will love it, however as an adult I personally found it too long, and far too much robots Kung-fu fighting, to be honest it got boring, you see one robot fight you have seen them all. I more or less dozed off by the end, good film but not my cup of tea. 6.5 out of 10.

Friday, July 10, 2009


Churchyards can be an interesting place for photographers, some of the better one's like Highgate and Kempsel green in London are full of mausoleum's, all overgrown in ivy, this one in Briton Ferry isn't quite so interesting but produced a few interesting pics all the same.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Hard drive died.

One of my back-up drives pegged out yesterday, it won't write, although I can still read from it, for the time being. The fact is ALL hard drives will fail at some point in their lives. The very way they are made with moving parts means something will give up sooner or later.
I was fortunate I have all my important stuff backed up at least twice, and usually DVD as well, a bloke I used to know lost all his family photos when his hard drive packed up, and that on a 2 year old PC.
So back up and back up again, you know it makes sense.

Pic for today

Heres a photo for today, it a wedding shot taken in the brides house. Wayne

Urgent warning

Be advised the "grabber" is back. This gadget was around a few years back but seems to have made a comeback, for those who haven't heard of it, it's a car key grebber. When you lock your car your key fob sends a remote signal, this thing "grabs" the signal and when you have gone the thief can play it back to open your car door, he can't steal it as the gadget won't start the car but he can either steal your stuff or steal your car using other means.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Wedding trends.

It's funny how there are trends in things. When I was a child it went from conkers to marbles to hulla hoops.
Weddings have similar tends, currently in "fashion" are two best men. Presumably the groom couldn't make his mind up, either that or reading a few cards was to much for one bloke? Either way it increases the group numbers in the wedding party, and makes it more lightly one or other will be in the bar come photo time.
The other trend, which has been around for a little while now is the "you've been tangoed!" look, the false tan thats BRIGHT orange. Sadly this is all too popular, and in a group shot a few of these stick out like the proverbial pork pie at a Jewish wedding, it also make sorting out the colour balance a bit trickier, as it's not so easy in close up's to get it looking "right".
Frankly I don't know why they don't go the while hog and shave their heads if they want to look like captain beanie.

Getting it right in camera.

There's a tendency now with digital of shooing quickly and "fixing any errors in Photoshop. Now personally I think that's wrong, it's much better to "get it right" in camera.
Back in the good old days of film, I used to shoot a wedding on 2 rolls of 36 (72 shots) out of that I'd have to get between 30 and 60 really good shots for the album (depending on package) Now it's not uncommon to shoot 1200-1500 shots on a wedding, ok the albums hold 120 shots now, but thats still a much higher wastage rate, for want of a better term.
What is easily forgetton is the more shots you take and the rougher they are, the more time post processing you'll spend.
Back with film I'd shoot a wedding, drop the films off at the lab and spend an evening putting the album together, now with digital I can spend 2 or 3 days post processing the images, if the photographer who took them them didn't get it right in camera.
So theres your tip guys, work slower, take less shots but get each and every one right in camera, you'll save yourself a lot of time and trouble in the long run.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Motorway piles-up and CSI Miami.

Heres a shot of a motorway- pile-up I took recently, it's shot on a cheap phone camera which explains the quality. Whats the CSI Miami connection you ask? Well it goes like this, while looking at this shot it reminded me of the typical video quality, on CSI Miami recently (I'm not a fan) they took a similar pic to this, run it through their "magic" software and Bingo! they could read the VIN number (vehicle identification number) which is a tiny plate inside the door with stamped type about the same size as this text.

Heres a blow up using some specialist software that actually exists, I don't know about you but I can't even read the number plate, never mind the vin number.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Gower bike ride photos.

Todays the Gower bike ride.
I used to ride this when it first started, back then it was just under 36 miles, now it's around 28 miles I think. I rode it many time, but after they changed the route to the current one it lost something, no longer did you go past Wobbley castle and the Brittania pub, and the really nasty climb just past it.
The lanes past Bury green were a bit dodgy I'll admit. And I got fed up of picking people up off the road at the top of the hill by Shapards shop, the corner seemed to catch people out, but it was a good hard fun ride.
here are a few of the many pics I took today.

Saturday, July 4, 2009


Horseflies and I have an arrangement, they love to bite me, and I hate the little b******s!
There's something in my blood they just love, they will come for miles to bite me. I have been in a field with 3 mates and the horseflies have totally ignored them and I'm covered in the bloody things, my mates are laughing while I'm leaping around screaming "GER OFF!!!!" and flapping my arms like the first man attempting flight. Although it makes no difference they still bite me.
To add insult to injury I'm mildly allergic to the bites, nothing serious I just get a big painfull lump, lovely!!
At this point there should be a pic of a horsefly, but it's hard to photograph and scream while running away so you'll have to look them on Google.

Wedding photographers must be flexible.

Wedding togs need to be flexible in their approach to a wedding. The reason is weddings are not set in stone, due to their very nature things change.

Take yesterday for example, my wedding was in Clydach with the reception in the Gower, the plan was to take all the group shots at the reception (nice views/gardens etc) however just after leaving the church, the brides horse turned up, no warning. I wasn't told it was just brought there, now we have to do some more shots at the church (I was going to take a few outside but not many) Then a few minutes later I'm asked to "stall" the couple for 30 minutes, the wedding cars broken down outside the church, nothing important, only the gearbox lol.

So I ended up shooting ALL the group shots there instead of the lovey Gower location I had planned.

That's what I mean about being flexible, the army have a term for it (it's used in training a lot) it's called dislocation of expectation. You expect one thing to happen and something different happens, the idea is to see how well you cope with those changes.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Auto setting??

I was out shooting a few days a go, and when walking back I got to thinking about what modes I'd shot in. During the few hours walk I'd used Program, Aperture priority, Shutter priority, and full Manual.
Couriously I'd not touched the full auto mode or any of the so called "scene" modes (I was shooting on a Canon) Which was interesting, why? because the Canon has a landscape mode, and I'd been shooting mostly landscape, now I can't remember ever using this or indeed any of the scene modes (portrait landscape macro night and what I assume is flash off mode?) I suppose I like to have control over what the camera does.

Maybe I'll try a few when I have time and post my results.

On to todays images, these were taken on my walk, they are all taken in the area around Dinas rock (near Glyn Neath) although the falls is a good walk from there. Wayne

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

You know it's going to be one of those wedding's when......

You know it's going to be one of those weddings when the groom gets his collar felt by the old bill right before the service (see pic)

Fortunately in this case he wasn't carted off to the nick because this was just a posed fun pic, and Simon (the groom) is a very nice honest bloke. The officer was in the venue on other business and obligingly posed for a pic when asked.

Here's a shot of his lovely wife Adele for you as well.

Tinted windows.

It seems the police in Wales are having a major anti-crime initiative! Yes they are are stopping those terribly vicious criminals who have...... tinted windows on their cars!.
It's good to know that with knife and gun crime on the increase, youngsters arming themselves for their own protections, gang culture a major problem, and burglaries rising fast, that the police are on the ball and stopping motorists, and actually measuring the tint on the windows.
Yes they have a special meter.... pity it doesn't detect drugs or knives, that would actually be useful, but heaven help any hardened "tinter" they catch, with this mentality they will probably get life on Devils Island. And if they have no M.O.T as well I'm afraid it's the black cap and " you'll be taken to a place of execution, where you'll be hung by the neck until dead" etc etc.
Will the last person left in this stupid country please turn out the lights on the way out.