Manual 365/347 Dark Flight

dsc_5261Even if you think there isn’t a shot, there probably is.

My day involved a 440 mile round trip on one of the dullest, shortest days of the year and things were getting desperate but there’s always Caen Flight in Devises and I was scooting around the usual A350 snarl up. It didn’t look promising…dsc_5262…but low cloud and reflected streetlights came to the rescue. (I am not endorsing light pollution, honestly I would have much preferred moonlight) Ok, I had to jack the ISO right up to 3200 and the shutter was open for 13 seconds so if you pixel peep the noise is horrendous and there’s no detail in the shadows. But I like

I even managed to get a HDR composite using three shots at ISO200, 800 and 3200dsc_5258_hdrSo, tip for tonight… Embrace the darkness and don’t fall in the canal…

Peace Peeps! x


Manual 365/100 It’s Just A Number, A Simple Sequential Symbol

… To denote that this blog follows the last blog…

But, I am human, and we do like our milestones!

So, to celebrate the fact I made it to 100 this blog is going to be Photo heavy and now that we’re home I’ve used all the tools at my disposal to bring out what I think is the best in some of my shots taken over the last week. Lightroom, The Nik Collection, Photoshop but mostly Cornwall… I thank you!

Port Quin

DSC_1222(18mm @f/6.3, 1/400 sec, ISO 100)

DSC_1550-EditSame cottage, different aspect and long exposure, edited in Silver Efex Pro2  (18mm @ f/22, 20 sec, ISO 100)

DSC_1552I’ve used this shot a few days ago but I’ve had a play with it in Lightroom (18mm @ f/22, 20 sec, ISO 100)

DSC_1508_HDRThis was shot from a little further west of Port Quin and is a HDR edited in HDR Efex Pro2, its a combination of 8 shots, all shot from the tripod at 2 stop differences with each shot and then blended together to increase the dynamic range.

Hayle Bay

DSC_136355mm @ f/8.0. 1/640 sec, ISO 100

DSC_1322300mm @ f/8.0, 1/500 sec, ISO 100

Reece300mm @ f/8.0, 1/500th sec, ISO 100

This one didn’t turn out as well as I hoped for, Reece is actually stood there and it’s a blend of two shots in Photoshop, one of him in focus and then a second with him out of focus and the background sharp. Unfortunately, I shot it hand held and moved slightly, hence the blurring around his left side and across the bottom. I’m sure there’s another way of getting the effect but I need to work that out.


DSC_1942-Edit-Edit55mm @ f/8.0, 1/500th sec, ISO 100 Silver Efex Pro2

and last but most definitely not least, Bossiney Bay

DSC_1711A panorama of 3 shots taken from the path up from the bay. all 50mm @f/8.0, 1/400th sec, ISO 400 (Not sure why I had my ISO high) edited using Photoshop and Lightroom.

DSC_2199_HDRThis HDR shot is a combination of two 30 second exposures blended using HDR Efex pro2 (Gawd bless Nik and all who sail in ‘er!) I bracketed using the ISO rather than the shutter speed. The first shot was at ISO 100 and was dark the second was at ISO 800 (It was near pitch black the only light source is from behind and left)  Other settings were 18mm @f/3.5. And just for the record, when I was a kid I was sure this cave contained something sinister so this shot documents the fact that I was being a silly little boy!

And a special mention to a decrepit old water pump in the middle of nowhere. I’ve utilised some of the HDR tools and filters in the aforementioned software for this combination of 6 shots. I know that some don’t like it but hey, my blog, my pictures so phooey!


Thank you all for your support over the last 100 days and a special thanks to my family who’ve had to put up with Dads obsession* and hogging of the PC! Not even a third of the way through it yet guys!

*Mid life crisis

Here’s to the next 265 days!

Still Twittering

and Facebooking

and Flickring

Peace Peeps! x




Manual 365/88 HDR? Don’t Mind If I Do Nik, Thanks!

Occasionally things drop into your lap for free, sometimes you’ve got to go hunting but every now and then The Lucky Kipper slaps you right in the face. Take yesterday for example. The drive to the shoot on the Severn Estuary took just over an hour so I fired up my trusty iPhone and started listening to my usual podcasts, one of which being the PetaPixel Photography Podcast with Sharky James and he happened to mention that the Google owned Nik Collection is now free to download. It used to cost $500 (about 350 quids) but Google are now giving it away.

Well, I thought, this is too good to miss so when I got back last night I downloaded the software and started watching a few videos on you tube to get a general idea of the beast.

And what a beast it is. Have a look here for more information. But the one thing that really stood out was the HDR Efex Pro2 and so todays mission was born…

Now, where does an old Heathen like me go to launch his HDR journey?


Yup, St Michael’s Church in Mere. Godless I may be but I do appreciate the beauty and heritage contained within our churches, cathedrals and abbeys and St Michael’s is a particularly impressive church (I am bias).

The photo itself is a amalgamation of  10 different shots, from

1/125th secDSC_0291

Through to 3 secDSC_0300

Apart from the shutter speed the other settings were: 18mm @ f/6.3, ISO100

And then Nik did their stuff! I am well impressed! And that’s just one of the applications.


Same settings on this shot through 5 shots and a built in pre-set used to bring out the textures in the stone.

Really, I can’t say this enough but if you use Lightroom, Photoshop or Aperture this free plug in is too good to miss!

Find me on Twitter, Facebook, Flickr and 500px

Not affiliated to Google in any way at all… Honestly!

Peace Peeps! x