New Forest – Light on Dark

Just back from a quick trip to the New Forest In Hampshire where I was trying my hand at light painting. I have been wanting to try light painting for some time and after a bit of research it seemed like the New forest would be a good place to experiment. Just getting to my location carrying 38kg of kit – on my own – was a feat! After some exposure tests, all the shots were pretty much first takes from ideas I’d formulated before. Shooting in the forest at midnight was an eerie experience, quite often I would hear twigs snapping as animals moved around, or turn around to see two green eyes staring at me, only to realise it was a New Forest pony!

More info as promised….

I used various pieces of lighting on the shoot including: Nikon SB900 flash units, LED Lenser P14 torch, and a fluorescent strip light which was powered by a portable (13kg!) battery with a normal 3 pin socket. The flash units were used to light the tops of the trees and give some detail to the foliage, but on 200 asa the tree canopy needed at least 6 full power bursts to illuminate anything! I was shocked at how much power was needed!

The tree trunks were lit with the torch which at 200 lumens (powerful for a torch – think car headlight brightness, but with the ability to focus the beam) was easily up to the job. My estimate of two scans up and down the tree was just about perfect exposure.The strip light was trickier to deal with as it necessitated tripping the shutter with the tube out of view, then walking a planned route across the view, then turning it off and returning to close the shutter!

I have to say I was quite lucky with the results, as all exposures pretty much came out correctly first time. or maybe that was just skill ;-) still it was all great fun apart from the Blair Witch moments when animals kept creeping around and scaring me!

If you would like any more information just leave a comment below.

Infra Red Phase One P21+ back acquisition

I am grateful to my contacts in the trade who have helped me acquire an Infra Red converted P21+ Phase One back to replace my Olympus E3. Its taken over a year of persuasion and persistence to get one, but I’m sure it will be worth it. The test shots look amazing! I now cant wait for all the leaves to come out on the trees so I can get some great shots. Another benefit is having less kit to carry round, which is always welcome!

LSE talk

Thanks to all those who attended my talk at LSE last night, I really enjoyed meeting you all and hope you enjoyed my talk! Dont forget I want to see your work posted on my facebook page, especially if you are going on the trip to the Lake District. Send me your best shots! Keep in touch and keep taking photos!

New website

Wow my new website has had over 1100 unique visitors today since a few people tweeted about it! Amazing!

National Geographic Photo Contest

Nearly an award at the most prestigious competition of the year!
Climate Consequences was at least a finalist!

The Photography Masters Cup

Just found out I was a finalist at the Photography Masters Cup awards! One of the biggest competitions in the world! Didn’t win anything though!

The EPSON International Pano Awards

I was absolutely delighted to be given four Bronze awards at the The EPSON International Pano Awards 2010. I only entered six images! Competition was fierce from all over the world, with my images being selected from over 5,000 entries. I was told I had the highest success rate for any entrant!

February 2010

I have installed a large panorama of Greenwich Park at the rear of Greenwich Union pub measuring 66×48 inches wide. Do pop along if you are in the area and taste the fine beers of Meantime Brewing. “We are delighted with the quality of Mike’s work and the speed and flexibility of his approach” Alec Fleming – Meantime Brewing.

Greenwich Picturehouse Cinema

1st December – 1st January 2010
An exhibition of more recent work of landmarks local to Greenwich, including the QE2 Bridge, Greenwich Park, Isle of Grain and the Royal Naval College.

Commended Prize – Landscape Photographer of the Year 2008

UPDATE: I have been awarded a ‘Commended’ prize for the Landscape Photographer of the year 2008! This is the second consecutive year I have been shortlisted from over 30,000 entries!