Researching what is worth seeing in Hanoi one cannot but stumble upon a mention of the famous Train Street. You get to read about the train which passes “inches from the houses” (it doesn’t), about the locals who live “right on the tracks and only move moments before the train arrives” (they don’t) and about how “crazy it all is” (it isn’t) and you start dreaming about it and wanting to see it and so on and so forth. I mean, let’s face it - it sounds absolutely tantalising and amazing - the antithesis between the fragile human with the massive metal beast that is the modern locomotive, especially in this day and age of political correctness and safety-above-all. So, if you’re in Vietnam for something more than cheap booze and party, Train Street is a must see, right?Read More
More and more, whether you travel to Nottingham Forrest or the lower borders of the Omo Valley, chances are you’ll come across groups of photographers, lugging backpacks, tripods, lenses etc., all seeking the perfect picture and willing to go to any lengths, pay any amount of money, to get there. And this is wonderful - imagine: we’re living in an age where every single one of us can see the world through a thousand other eyes, for free, and draw inspiration! It’s wonderful.
But, there’s a dark side to this and it’s damaging our world…Read More
How would you react if you were a passionate amateur photographer and someone told you that, despite your $60,000 worth of equipment and your recent trip to India with a “professional photographer guide”, not ALL your images are actually worth something? Probably you’d be disappointed and might even react badly - right? The thing is you’d be wrong and if you want to improve, you need to take a moment and think of what I’m trying to say here - the truth is 99% of your images are NOT great. In fact, chances are they’re not even good. No matter how much you like them. Or your friends like them and heart them in Facebook or wherever.Read More
We all come across images which awe and inspire us - in fact I’m willing to bet that every image which stops you dead in your tracks inspires something within you! This is true for everyone in the world, but even more for us photographers, because sometimes these images drive us to try and get some equally good ones. So we pack our bags and travel to exactly the same destination, at exactly the same time as the original image and…guess what, nothing - absolutely nothing - is like we imagined or planned and, even worse, those images we were 100% certain we would capture are nowhere to be found. How can that be?
Well, the images are there - trust me - but sometime (actually, most of the time!) you need some help to get to them. And that help is a professional fixer.Read More
In this day and age of information, where thousands of images, articles, opinions of all types and quality literally bombard us every waking moment, we become, more and more, exposed to both ends of the quality spectrum - from the amazing and awe-inspiring to the truly, beyond-words, awful. True, that has always been the case, but in the old days (and yes, this does show how old I am!) awfulness had the tendency to be filtered early, discouraged and, eventually, stamped out.
Today, where every single person can build a site or a blog, post anything they way and share it with the world (and, through that, find people who will like it and agree with it), more and more failed experiments reach us and, for me at least, make me wonder: why? Why would someone allow themselves to share something bad when there is such a plethora of incredible resources (for free for God’s sake!) to help them. Of course, the answer is obvious: today people crave attention, affection and validation of their view of the world that they don’t read, they rarely learn and, worse than all, they don’t accept opinions or criticism.Read More
These days, more and more, I read various “why I …” articles covering pretty much every single aspect of photography - from camera brand to lenses, bags, filters etc. In fact, before I made my change I think I actually went through almost everything that was ever written be people who had done something similar to what I was thinking of doing and, let me tell you, they were really helpful. What they were not was easy to find or written by someone who was not paid or otherwise sponsored by a company or other. So, the scepticism was still there and, truth be told, it took me a long time and a lot of effort to reach my decision (and even longer to implement).
This is why I thought I’d share this with you to possible give you yet another insight into what it means to leave the warm, comfortable (but insanely annoying) embrace of the industry standard which is Lightroom and jump into the arms of the strange, a bit quirky, niche player that is CaptureOne. True, for me it was a good switch - I have not regretted it for one moment (even though I do miss some of the features Lightroom offered) but it could have gone badly SO easily that is scares me when I look back.Read More