• A new blog

    So after a while of to-ing and fro-ing I have decided to rekindle my want to write a blog. So I find myself wondering where I will begin and what will be the focus of this blog.

    As a photographer this blog will be focused around photography and what I have been up to, photography news (if it is interesting) and I may go into some tips and hints for photography. Now, I am not the most linguistic of writers so this will no doubt focus on photos and pictures. I will attempt to update this blog on a weekly basis based on what has been going on over the last week or so. I am also keen to showcase some personal projects and write about my experiences around them.

    So in terms of exciting things to of happened this week there has been a couple, 1st is the arrival of a new lens. This lens for the photographers out there is a sigma 70-200 f2.8.

    I have brought this lens to use mainly for portraits as the focal length of the lens is perfect to blow out and compress the background of the image and really draw the attention to the subject. This is a second hand copy of the lens and took the jump in buying from ebay. After a few snippers beating me I finally won one. Hurrah for me. I am genuinly excited to use this lens at the Tonic Music Festival for mental health where I am photographing the event in a couple weeks. I am very proud to have been asked to be a part of this and would urge you to take a look at this link http://tinyurl.com/tonicfestThe festival is at the pyramids in Portsmouth. Anyway I digress from the lens.

    This lens really gives me the ability to really focus in of the subject and will aid me in telling the story in pictures. To give you an example;


    This picture of a guy called Adam Learner (a New York based photographer over here running workshops with Jared Polin) it really shows how the background melts away in buttery bokeh (bokeh is a term discribing the blur/out of focus areas of a photo).

    This leads onto both my 2nd and 3rd  treats this week. A photographer by the name of Jared Polin of www.froknowsphoto.com who amongst being a fantastic photographer also focuses on supporting and teaching photography via online media mainly youtube. Jarred has really help me as a photographer in terms of moving into a more professional offerings. Jared, has had the opportunities to shoot some amazing musicians in his career, many of them some of my favourites like Counting Crows. He brought along his colleague Adam Learner of www.adamlearner.net who also is an amazing photographer. Adam also supports the Froknowsphoto world where he brings his experience particularly in flash photography. I am happy to help anyone and talk about photography until I am blue in the face but these guys really convey excellent advice in an engaging and easy to understand way. It was a real pleasure to meet these guys and say thanks. Plus get a photo with the “Fro”.

    The next event was whilst heading to London to meet Jared and Adam, I decided to take last years birthday present with me.

    This is a Rolliecord, a medium format film camera. Medium format uses a larger size film, this camera takes 120mm square film compared to the more commonly used 35mm (I say commonly used, this is meant in the past tense now as film is unfortunately not that common any more). Since the introduction of Instagram the square crop has become a common feature in everyones twitter and facebook feeds. Instagram is insanely popular in the main, although it does have a marmite effect on people who say “I don’t want to see a photo of a cup of coffee with a 70’s look filter over it”. I get that, although I do have a some coffee shots on my Instagram feed but there is a lot of Guinness and ales too…. It seems that this is the way iphoneography (or other bands of smart phones) is going to and if it means more people are enjoying photography then thats a good think. I wouldn’t dare suggest that I would use it on a shoot to hand to clients but then thats not what I have been hired for, the guests can cover that.

    Anyway, off Instagram and back to the rollie, this is the first time I had used this camera having missed the film days the first time round. I have had to think a lot more around metering with it. A new experience when you can’t look at the back of the camera to know if you have a good exposure settings or not. So walking from Waterloo station to the Royal Albert Hall I decided to try the camera out in nice sunlight. To get around the metering of the scene I use my iPhone with a free app called “Light Meter”, here you can set the ISO/ASA of the film, the aperture I want and the app gives you the shutter speed. Put this with experience and overall gut feeling to the scene I went for it. I used two roles of film and enjoyed taking my time composing. It is a little strange framing the picture looking down into the camera but was great fun.

    The disappointing part now is the waiting, being used to the digital age of getting home and processing the shoot in lightroom I now have to send the film off to get developed. This is a new experience for me as I have no idea if I have done anything right and could end up with a load of over or under exposured images…….. So the films are now sent off and hopefully will be back with me in the next few days, gone are the days of nipping down the high street to get them developed as this has been long since replace with instant prints of an SD card.

    This does raise a thought to me though and would be interested to see what people think. In the days of instant social sharing online, does anyone print there photos anymore? I think of the last year I have got about four pictured printed in large wall art and one photobook done. Is printing a lost format? Do you need something tangible anymore?  Has social media replaced the photoalbum kept in the bottom draw somewhere?

    I think I miss prints and will be looking to print more often on personal projects.

    I will post the photos from the rollie when I get them, and will probably be part of next weeks bog.

    Anyway, thats all from me at the moment, you can contact me here on this website or follow me on the various social networks. Thanks for reading.



    Email – tom@tomrobertsimages.co.uk

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