Tuesday 24 January 2012

Messy Church Feb 2012 – Hands on Activities

Often when producing photographs of young children, I’ve found its best to be safe and have not put their faces up on the web. So often I tend to stick to less obvious shots.

For example experimenting with depth of field can be extremely helpful, focusing on an object instead of a face. Even concentrating on arts and crafts materials or the art work the kids have created can be a fun way to express a feeling from the day.

Throughout my work with Messy Church, I’ve included hands as my main subject matter. I have developed this idea through messy church because of how many hands on activities have been offered.

This can also be a fabulous way of including people in your shots, and to describe a little about the person, for example revealing an approximate age.

I like to challenge myself with new projects, so far Messy Church has been a great learning experience for me and I have gained some background knowledge in my photography subjects.

Messy Church Feb 2012 - Paper Crafts

A part of the Noah’s Ark session, an origami project was set. As the leaders set up before the children and parents arrived, myself and others had a bash at making a boat.

At first I was pretty stuck but I managed well and produced one. The leaders worried the boat may be too complex for the kids to make, luckily we had someone to give the children assistance.

The origami boats created a great subject matter for my photography, and developed a series of images with the boats, experimenting also with reflections and depth of field.

Messy Church Feb 2012 – New Projects For The Kids

I’ve been working as an event photographer for messy church now for over a year or so and it has been a very rewarding experience in lots of ways. Each session has a theme relating to Christianity and I enjoy working with the children and being involved in the activities.

By having a different theme each time, different projects are set, this session was based on Noah’s Ark, involving things like water activities and building a mini ark with nails.

The Vicar, Rachel who organises this event researches projects from the messy church book which I think can be bought in book shops. (Or type it in Amazon for their book range)

I think the events work so well and encourage learning in a fun way, the art activities are all well designed for very young children and it has certainly given me a few ideas for my creative projects and photography work!

Bright Colours – In My Neighbour’s Garden

After creating a couple of frosty macros I decided to rebel slightly and produce some photographs from this cold season which were less traditional.

A few times now I have taken flowers in winter, for example roses which I think are a great and unobvious subject matter for photography.

I increased the natural tones to make the images look sharper and more vibrant. Simple Photoshop processing techniques can make all the difference in my opinion and I really enjoy the editing part – its fun!

Neutral Colours – In My Neighbour’s Garden

These photographs were taken early last week on an unusually cold and frosty day. December last year we were lucky with the weather and at Christmas there was no ice or snow really.

I wanted to create some icy captures and the weather was a lovely change on this particular day, because in photographic terms, there were lots of new opportunities.

I noticed some of my keen photography friends made the most of this frosty and misty day. I think it’s about having an eye for opportunities.

These photographs are all quite neutral and communicate the weather quite clearly, even if most are macro. My hands were turning to ice so I didn’t stay out long, it was too cold! 

Tuesday 17 January 2012

Ethereal Collage Continued in Mono

I anticipated the black and whites could communicate a completely different ambience by isolating them from the colour images. As I’ve learnt, making a colour image black and white can immediately change the feel and overall appearance of an image.

On this note, I want to add a tip, grouping monochromes images is much easier, if for example colours in a photo clash and look odd together; by turning the image to monochrome this risk decreases.

I love black and white photography but often only take the colour out on Photoshop when I have time to ponder on final aesthetics to an image. These images I’ve blogged look moody and ethereal but unlike the colours, they look more of a portfolio standard.

Ethereal Collage Continued

These images seem to be a natural continuation from photographic work I did December last year. They have the same feel to them and I have named the style I have developed as ethereal collage. Many of these images could be characterized as ghostly with a collage kind of an effect.

I have blogged the colour images separately from the monochrome, as even thought they go well together thought gathering the monochromes together would work well also.

You may have observed some of these images have pastel coloured tones to them; some of these are natural however on some, I intensified them with a couple of clever functions on Photoshop. This makes the overall effect much more striking and noticeable.

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