British Gent

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Everything posted by British Gent

  1. Favourite images uploaded - May 2018

    That is a beautiful image. Of something quite terrifying.
  2. The size of your portfolio when you made your first sale

    First sale just over a year after my first submission, notable mainly because I didn't notice for about eleven months. I'd given up checking. Hadn't been paid because I'd not got around to giving them any bank details. Probably had less than 100 images up at the time. The main lesson I've learned on this forum over the past few months is the need to greatly increase my submission rate.
  3. Favourite images uploaded - May 2018

    Cliche alert! Just discovered a rich source of bluebell shots very close to home and the experience has given me a new-found respect for bluebell photographers. I've never spent so long in Lightroom in my life, trying to tame highlights and tease out shadow detail. The second shot came at the end of two hours traipsing around the beach and dunes near Porthcawl, waiting in vain for the mist to clear. Just as I was getting back to the car and rather despondent I came across a large group of jet-skiers preparing for a day on the water. That provided a nice crop of shots, but turning my back on them gave me my favourite of the day.
  4. Adobe PS CC and the alternatives

    Ah yes. A personal favourite was always the 'background' update. You know the one - it takes 90% of the processing power, but being 'background' it doesn't tell you what it's doing. In fact, there's nothing on the screen to tell you the machine is doing anything; the only clue is the several long seconds of lag after each mouse click. Eventually, after much clicking around and attempts to shut the damn thing down, a box pops up to tell you Windows is performing updates and may be some time. This gives you the overwhelming impression that turning on the PC was for its benefit, not yours. Your requirements are secondary. You have to wait. I don't think I'm being difficult, but I object to being insulted by my electrical goods.
  5. Adobe PS CC and the alternatives

    I was perfectly happy with Windows 7 back in two thousand and whatever and took a keen interest in the news and reviews of Windows 8 as it neared release. Less than an hour of actually using it though and I was ready to punch holes in the nearest wall. Switching to Apple was a foregone conclusion. How is it possible that the most powerful and pioneering software company in the world can release a product that leaves its users staring at a screen and unable to work out how to go forward or back? Surely the most epic fail in user interface design ever. Any time I find myself helping elderly friends with their PCs I'm reminded why my only mistake was leaving it so long.
  6. $400k threshold...

    It's my May challenge now - to get a 'green' one.
  7. $400k threshold...

    Amazing. Not sure which is most impressive, though - the career total or the fact that you have learned the secret of 'optimised discoverability'.
  8. Favourite images uploaded - April 2018

    The best shot I've ever taken - in my slippers. Well, The Acapela Studio is a nightmare to photograph. I've tried many times (as it's just yards from my door), but the immediate surroundings are not the most attractive. So when the evening sun provides a spotlight on just the bit I'm interested in there isn't time to put your shoes on. You just grab the camera and go.
  9. Favourite images uploaded - April 2018

    Interior of Llandaff Cathedral one lunch time last week. Was wandering around the outside when I saw the open doors. Two old boys were standing at the bottom of the steps handing out information sheets to visitors, but conveniently drifted off to chat to the lady selling books in the corner. Handheld, unfortunately, but I could go back every day for a year with my tripod and never get an opportunity like that again.
  10. Favourite images uploaded - April 2018

    I'm going for the most diverse three images I can put in one post. I like to think of it as evidence of my newly acquired 'stock mindset'. But maybe I should open the letter from my GP. My results are back...
  11. Being Watched!

    ...folio?
  12. Favourite images uploaded - April 2018

    Goodness me!
  13. The $100,000+ club

    What he said. It took me nine years to get 467 images uploaded, but I've nearly doubled that in the first three months of this year - partly as a result of reading this thread and realising I needed to get my *rse in gear. The other stimulus was starting a run last summer of at least one sale per month which eventually ran out in March. I guess it's finally dawned on me that there's an element of control in all of this. If I work consistently and upload a far larger quantity of diverse images, I CAN increase sales. But the folk on here putting the word 'only' in front of five figure numbers still takes my breath away!
  14. Fine Art photography

    It's quite reassuring (some would call it confirmation bias) that several successful photographers on here have chipped in with their own horror stories about their local club. I wouldn't want to be too harsh - it clearly works for lots of people and probably provides a valuable social function - just not for me. Reading through the various posts has dredged up a few forgotten gems, so at risk of drifting into bitchiness I'll add one other favourite: On one occasion I recall a visiting judge waxing lyrical about an 'action' shot of a white-water rafter. You'll know the kind of thing - swirling water, droplets frozen in mid-air, and that all-important pin sharp focus on the straining face of the rafter. Except somehow the perpetrator of this particular shot had managed, miraculously, to make it dull. He had clearly spent a large part of his day with the continuous-high setting applied, shooting I imagine hundreds of images, all of which got deleted except the one we all sat there looking at. The rafter's face was too small to be truly dramatic and white water in huge quantities is, to be honest, pretty uninteresting. But how that judge loved lecturing us on how important it is to have sharp focus on the eyes! And how the photographer had 'captured' the intense concentration of the sportsman's face. Blah, blah, blah, blah.... Not sure I even stayed for a polystyrene cup of weak tea that night.
  15. Oh my goodness, does this dog watch TV! I have any number of shots of him standing with his nose up to the screen when a nature program is on. He's even looked behind the TV to see where the creature he's been watching has gone. Not sure if this makes him extremely bright for a dog or very dim, but he is a character for sure.
  16. Two of the snowy weekend just gone, and one from last year when we looked after a very handsome Welsh Springer for a friend.
  17. Bit cheeky to be commenting on this thread without actually contributing (yet), but it's an eye-opener for someone who has struggled with developing the 'stock mindset', if you know what I mean. It took me the best part of nine years to submit 467 images here, but filled with a New Year resolve to widen my scope, I've got to nearly 700 in little over two months. Now I realise I can increase my submission total in my underpants. (As long as I avoid reflective surfaces.) Very illuminating!
  18. Fine Art photography

    I have to confess that I gave up making the weekly trip to a local camera club some years ago, mainly because of (what I perceived to be) the poor quality of the judging. Yes, judging. Like a lot of the camera clubs that thrive in South Wales, photography is seen as something of a competitive sport. Definitely not an aspect that holds any interest for me. So the judging... hmm... seemed to be largely about having something to say or demonstrating some sort of knowledge. E.g. Judge: "See how the lines draw your eye into the picture." Me (silently): "But I'd rather my eyes weren't drawn into that dross." Surely no one in the room admired the image, but it got marked highly because the judge found something to say. When s/he was called upon to comment on a genuinely interesting photograph, that demonstrated real artistic flair or an eye for a picture, but which failed to follow the rule of thirds or some such, it was passed over. If the artist says it's art then it is. Maybe. If the judge says it's art - I would have to disagree. I am none the wiser.
  19. The $100,000+ club

    A 'metric' that would be of great interest to me is how many hours a week the elite contributors put in. I do believe I can be more effective with what time I have, but suspect I won't be able to ramp up to the submission volumes these guys have achieved until retirement...
  20. Favourite images uploaded - Feb 2018

    A grab shot as I left a building site last week. Straight into the sun. Amazing what even a ten year old sensor has lurking in the shadows once you start delving.
  21. Those missed photo opportunities

    Alas, I am prey to this anxiety also! Being in full-time work means I regularly find myself gazing wistfully out of the window as the light becomes really interesting and wondering how good some of my favourite locations must be looking....
  22. Fine Art photography

    Every now and then I dip into the winners' galleries that pop up online for prestigious competitions like the Taylor-Wessing portrait prize. Some of the photos are lovely to look at in fairness, while others look like better exposed examples of a B&Q employee of the month mug shot. I've reconciled myself to the fact that I simply don't get it.
  23. Those missed photo opportunities

    It does worry me a little that cameras are increasingly becoming computers. Ten years ago my D700 was state of the art (or so it seemed to me) whereas now it looks like a mechanical brick compared to the mirrorless wonders Sony are designing. But the D700 is ready to go the instant I turn it on. I've never questioned it. One bad experience like Alan's would worry me deeply.
  24. Fine Art photography

    I risk killing this thread stone dead, but would someone care to define 'Fine Art Photography'? I recently saw an Instagram post of a dreadfully dull silhouette of some trees that had been converted to black and white. This, according to the photographer's comment, made it 'fine art'. An extreme example, but one thing is for sure - calling something fine art doesn't make it fine art, which implies there are criteria even if it's debatable at the margins.
  25. Those missed photo opportunities

    Each morning as I approach work I pass a view of Llandaff Cathedral across school playing fields. It often looks pleasant in the morning sun, but one particular morning about eighteen months ago it looked so astonishing I nearly drove into the car in front of me. The sky was a deep storm grey behind it, but a brilliant orange light from the sun broke through clouds on the horizon and lit it up. It looked the same colour as The Grand Canyon. Since that day I've often taken my camera to work if there's even a slim chance of a repeat, but nothing has ever come close. I'm trying to keep the faith, but what are the chances...