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My photography related blog posts. Please feel free to share the link to these articles if they are of interest.


Timelapse of the MSC Kwangyang

February 06, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

Timelapse of the MSC Kwangyang

Timelapse Peacock Island, Benidorm, SpainShipping and fishing vessels around the bay in Benidorm, including the passing of the MSC Kwangyang

MSC Kwangyang?

Yes, it just happened to pass by on the horizon line at the end as I was shooting another timelapse, this time with my Canon 6d DSLR.

I was hoping that the clouds would change into a storm front and become more dramatic, so I chose that particular view with Peacock Island near the horizon line, and, nothing much happened!

For this timelapse, I took 940 images in RAW with 5 seconds between each one using a 75-300 EF lens and the Magic Lantern Intervalometer which is loaded on startup from the SD card.

It was mid-afternoon so there isn't a problem with big changes in exposure, allowing me to use ISO 100 for quality with an f-stop of 6.3 which is about the sweet spot for this particular lens, and a fast shutter of 1000th of a second as it was on a tall tripod at full zoom in a breeze.

These RAW files are imported into Lightroom with my user preset which has a couple of small tweaks to correct the very bad CA and fringing I get with this particular lens.

A couple more adjustments and then I load them all into the slideshow module and export them with a watermark, compiled using a 24fps preset to an mp4 movie file.

I will be shooting more time-lapses before we leave Spain, hopefully with more interesting content, and I will be experimenting with loading a sequential sequence of jpegs into Hitfilm Express and making a movie that way.

How do I know it was the MSC Kwangyang? Easy, I am so nerdy that I like to look up the passing ships whilst we are in this part of the world and look at their route etc using the Marine Traffic website which allows you to track shipping worldwide.

Getting your settings right with the Sony RX100M3 and an iPhone 5s

January 30, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

EDIT: Click here for an update at the bottom of this post with my correct settings to prevent the problem.

On a recent excursion to the Skywalk at Santa Pola, Alicante Province, Spain to shoot some pictures for stock I only used the Sony RX100M3. I'm familiar with the camera and popped off a few shots to upload to my stock portfolio on ALAMY.
Skywalk Santa Pola Alicante SpainSkywalk Santa Pola Alicante SpainSkywalk Santa Pola Alicante Spain


It was mid-morning and the light is pretty poor, particularly looking out to sea, so the best shots were to be had in the opposite direction.

The best way to achieve better results was to put the RX100 onto a monopod and use the wifi remote control feature to take some shots from high up to give a better scale to the view, and also to avoid the harsh light a little.

When I used my other Sony camera, the RX10 in conjunction with the Sony Playmemories 'smart remote control' software I didn't have any problems getting the results I wanted, but the setup with the RX100, for me, is not very intuitive.

Anyway, I set it up, and after hoisting it aloft I took a few pics using my phone as a remote control which I was fairly happy with.

On our return, I imported the pictures into Lightroom for editing and captioning and suddenly noticed that the ones from the monopod were missing!

It wasn't a big problem though as I had them on my phone didn't I?

Well, yes I did, but the phone had only saved them at a just over 1600 px on the long side, so, unfortunately, not good enough quality for stock sales, and this type of image is not suitable for upsizing as it would almost definitely fail Alamy QC, which would put me in the doghouse, and so far I haven't had a QC fail with them since my initial submission back in 2013 which was my first of 361 uploads to date.


The pictures below may look pretty, but the quality is only fit for screen viewing.

Skywalk, Santa Pola, Alicante Province, SpainSkywalk, Santa Pola, Alicante Province, SpainSkywalk, Santa Pola, Alicante Province, Spain Skywalk, Santa Pola, Alicante Province, SpainSkywalk, Santa Pola, Alicante Province, SpainSkywalk, Santa Pola, Alicante Province, Spain

So, when you use the Sony RX100M3 with the apps on the phone, check and test to make sure you will be saving to the phone (I shoot RAW and JPG) and also make sure that the size setting for your phone is on 'original size'.
I never had any problems using the camera/phone software when I had the Sony RX10, but with the RX100M3 I even struggle with setting up my phone to the camera by wifi to use it, although that may change when I go back to Android... I'll let you know.

EDIT: Correct settings for saving full size JPG to phone and full size RAW/JPG to camera at the same time.

BEFORE connecting to the camera there is an option of copy image size on the phone version of PlayMemories... I choose original.
IMG_20180131_125457IMG_20180131_125457 IMG_20180131_125505IMG_20180131_125505 You can then connect to the camera.

After connecting with the camera, the full view of PlayMemories will be showing, then, choosing menu gives you more options including the option of 'size of REVIEW image'. 

That is where I was going wrong.
IMG_20180131_125557IMG_20180131_125557 IMG_20180131_125607IMG_20180131_125607 I was assuming that REVIEW meant a preview size on the screen, it doesn't, it means that the file will transfer to the phone at whatever you choose, and I had the menu setting as 2M.

IMG_20180131_125624IMG_20180131_125624 The image now saves on the phone as a JPG at full size and on the camera at my chosen settings which are RAW+JPG.

Photo-bombed by Bats at sunset

January 22, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

Time-lapse with Sony RX100 MK3.

I took a pew down by Benidorm Harbour the other night and set up a tripod with my little Sony RX100 MK3 to capture the sunset.
I was using the software which is available from the Sony store and was quite happy with what I was seeing in my viewfinder.
This was taken over about an hour, it's 600 frames shot as RAW only, but there is a choice to let the software do a video instead.

Benidorm Harbour sunset, Spain.Time-lapse of the view from Benidorm Harbour with the Sony RX100mk3. One hour and 600 frames for 26 seconds of footage.
The RAW files were imported into Lightroom, where I edited them and then compiled them at 24fps 1080 HD (not shown at that quality here) using the slideshow module.
If I go back down to the harbour I would probably change the composition, and maybe use my Canon 6d instead, but I'm quite happy with the result from the Sony.

My only problem was, that as it started to get darker we were surrounded by bats! They can be seen throughout the clip as specs, and the only way to get rid of them would have been to edit each individual frame which they were on, and, with 600 frames it would be quite a chore.
If this had been a commission, I would have course gone through every frame.

Here are some frames with them on (size reduced for speed of loading).

DSC08266DSC08266 DSC08272DSC08272 DSC08276DSC08276 DSC08290DSC08290 DSC08303DSC08303 If anyone has any questions or indeed advice, please feel free to comment and feel free to share a link to this post on social media.

Dust Bunnies

December 26, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

The dust bunny trouble with using a camera with a mirror and interchangeable lenses is a long standing problem, even after cleaning the sensor.

Here's an image which, although not particularly interesting is one I wanted to work on.


I wanted to use a small aperture of f22 for this shot to slow everything down as I didn't have a neutral density filter, and that's where the trouble starts because a  small aperture shows all the dust bunnies.

At a glance, there's only a couple of dust spots visible, but once I look at the top half of it in Lightroom.

dust2dust2 Every one of those stands out like a sore thumb at 100% and not only does it fail my own QC, it would fail Alamy QC, and get me  a short uploading ban.

This is what it looks like as I remove, or clone out the spots.

Then, a little more work and I have the finished image.
It's not a keeper for me unfortunately, as it is, as I said earlier, a bit boring, but it's all good practice.
Dust bunnies will always be a problem with DSLR mirrored and even mirrorless cameras even with the utmost hygiene practices and care whilst changing lenses, and, for me, it's why I may go the way of mirrorless compacts (think the full frame Sony RX1, RX1R) when I next change my main gear.


Canon 6d 10 seconds ISO 100 @ f22. Poniente beach and Peacock Island, Benidorm, Costa Blanca, Spain.

Making a time-lapse with LR 5

December 02, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

It's blustery weather where we are, so I've been having a little timelapse fun to pass the time.

This video was saved at 1080, but would have been faster loading at 720.


Timelapse taken in Moraira, SpainMade using a Canon 6d and the LR5 slideshow module


The Camera was set up on a tripod with manual settings, except for auto ISO, all the frames were shot in RAW using a plug in intervalometer set to one frame every 10 seconds up to a total of 300 frames which takes about half an hour.

Intervalometer for Canon cameraIntervalometer for Canon camera

They were then imported into Lightroom where a few adjustments on one frame are made such as cropping to 16:9 and then copied to the rest using auto-sync.

Further settings are decided in the Slideshow module, then the whole 300 are exported at 24fps to give me a 10 second MP4 movie.

LR 5 screenshot in Slideshow module.LR 5 screenshot in Slideshow module.Lightroom 5 screenshot.

I could have also used the built-in intervalometer which is included as part of the Magic Lantern software which I also use on my Canon 6d.

Magic Lantern software on Canon 6d showing Intervalometer setting screen.Magic Lantern software on Canon 6dMagic Lantern software on Canon 6d showing Intervalometer setting screen.

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