Saturday, July 9, 2011

PhotoCamp London 2011

My shot of Queen Anne's Lace inspired by watching Ms. Mary Lou Roberts.
Today PhotoCamp London 2011 was held at the Convergence Centre on the grounds of the UWO Research Park in North London. Local photographer James Wilkinson deserves to receive a lot of praise for his part in putting together the very successful day.

The morning ended with a PhotoWalk.
One part of the day involved a PhotoWalk around the centre's grounds. I noticed a lady, Mary Lou Roberts, getting down on her knees to take shots of Queen Anne's Lace from the underneath looking up. What a fine idea!

It turns out that Ms. Roberts took a some photography instruction from a fellow with whom I once worked — Dave Chidley. Chidley is one of the finest newspaper shooters in Canada. He taught his students that if one isn't getting their knees dirty they aren't finding enough different angles. It's a good rule.

The afternoon photo shoot had two professional models.
The afternoon offered a photo shoot with a couple of professional models.

I felt out of my league shooting with my simple  cameras — my Fuji FinePix HS10 bridge camera and my point-and-shoot Canon PowerShot S90.

DSLRs and long lenses were the order of the day. We learned that all lenses have an f/stop at which they perform best. The info can be found on the Internet using Google.

The leader of the walk, James Wilkinson, said he was shooting at f/4.0 with his portrait length lens. This gave him reduced depth of field to make the models pop from the page. Also, f/4.0 was the sharpest setting with his particular lens.

The models had photo-perfect bodies.
I must say the models were both good and very professional but I, as a former news shooter, prefer less structured, more natural, poses. I felt the late Peter Gowland would have been comfortable shooting the poses taken by the young woman model — especially those she took after stripping down to her bikini.

I'm a still photographer but my background is in film. I have a degree in filmmaking from Ryerson in Toronto. I found the talks on shooting video the high point of the day. I found myself fully in agreement with the advice delivered at the morning panel discussion.

Edward Platero told us: "Embrace the limitations of the camera." Man, is he right. Chris Hachey added: You must get "the best you can with what you've got."

This is good advice for still photographers as well as videographers.

Chris Hachey
The enthusiasm for the art of shooting video was quite evident at the morning discussion. I loved it when Chris Hachey said:

"You'll never stop learning."

Addendum: At PhotoCamp I learned there's a lot of experimenting being done with Canon DSLRs being used to shoot video. For instance, a season final of House was shot using a Canon 5D Mark II. Amazing! If you're interested in seeing a short shot with a Canon DSLR check out this post on Rockin' On: The Blog

My best shot of the young model was taken before the shoot.

1 comment:

Don Martel said...

It was certainly a great morning.. too bad I had to miss the afternoon, looking forward to the next photocamp and hooking up with

~Don Martel