how I use categories on chromasia

All the entries on chromasia are placed into one of seven primary categories: six to reflect the aspect ratio of the image, and the seventh to indicate that an image isn’t available as a print. Additionally, each photograph may be assigned to one of more additional categories or subcategories, e.g. my travel category, children category, and so on.

about the ‘piers [Central pier]’ category

Central Pier, Blackpool.

14 May, 2013 // Untitled #156comments & reactions

I'm just putting the finishing touches to my initial review of the Sony RX1, within which I stress the quality of the images this camera can produce – it's a truly awesome camera. It's not quite so great for this type of shot though.

Typically, when I'm shooting on the beach I shoot from as close to the ground as possible, especially when I'm shooting reflections. When the sand is dry, that's OK, but if it's wet it's not so much fun with the RX1. It's fine with my A99, which has a flip-out screen, but with the RX1 you either need to commit yourself to getting soaking wet, or guess. In this case I guessed.

And if you've taken a look at the original you'll see that I didn't quite get it right on this occasion :)

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3.20pm on 6/5/13
Sony DSC-RX1
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This was taken earlier today, underneath Blackpool's Central Pier, about an hour or so before high tide. I was down on the seafront with Neil Sandbach for the first part of his one-to-one training day: shooting in the morning, post-production this afternoon. I got one other shot that I'll post in a day or so and Neil got around four or five that I expect will end up on 500px: at least I hope they will, they were great shots :-)

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11.09am on 1/12/12
Sony SLT-A99
Sony 24-70mm f/2.8 Carl Zeiss T*
70mm
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N5348.660'
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26 May, 2012 // untitled #135comments & reactions

I've posted quite a lot of images of Blackpool's Central Pier, some of which are quite similar to this one, but it's a structure I find myself returning to again and again.

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9.57am on 9/5/12
Canon 5D Mark II
EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM
50mm
f/11.0
1/160s
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3 January, 2012 // drawn by the wavescomments & reactions

This was taken back in September during my Creating Dramatic Images workshop in Blackpool. It's a shot of Blackpool's Central Pier, taken from the North Pier, and while it's not an especially dramatic seascape I do like how it turned out, particularly in terms of the detail in the foreground waves.

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3.44pm on 17/9/11
Canon 5D Mark II
EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM
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f/3.5
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9 January, 2011 // the evening dreams #212 comments

This is a companion shot to this one, a shot of Blackpool Tower, taken on my trip back to the UK in October. In many ways I think I prefer the first shot I posted, but I do like this one too.

On a related note, I'll be using this image for our latest Mini-PSD: the 52nd to be added to the archive since we started including them as part of our tutorials. If you're interested, I'll be uploading it at some point tomorrow morning.

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10.52am on 10/10/10
Canon 5D Mark II
EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM
24mm
f/16.0
1/1000
aperture priority
-2
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100
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Camera Raw
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25 November, 2008 // untitled #7733 comments

This is a shot of Blackpool's Central pier, located about half a mile south of the North Pier, the subject of my previous entry. As with my previous two shots, it was taken shortly before sunset on Saturday evening, and for this one I decided to emphasise the various textures within the image – the movement of water in the foreground, the sharp lines of the pier, and the rolling clouds in the background.

If you're interested, the original is here:

.../archives/untitled_0077.php

Update: this is just a quick note to let you all know that I won't be updating the blog for a few days as the hard drive in my laptop has failed. Coincidentally, I recently ordered a backup machine, but that won't arrive for another ten days or so, so in the meanwhile I need to wait until I can get my current machine fixed and restored from my backup. Fortunately, I do have an almost current Time Machine backup, but don't have any way of accessing the files until I get my laptop back. Fingers crossed it should all be sorted by Tuesday or Wednesday at the latest.

Update #2: I had an appointment scheduled for 12.20 today (Sunday 30th) at the Genius Bar of the Trafford's Centre Apple store. Unfortunately though, we were a bit late. Just as we were coming up to our junction on the M60 we blew a rear tire and by the time I could pull over it was smoldering on the rim. Anyway, as we had all six kids with us, we decided to ring the AA and get them to sort it out while we huddled on the other side of the barrier - and I'm glad we did, because our spare was damaged too.

We haven't had our new van long (it's a Transit Tourneo) and hadn't noticed that there was a flat spot on the spare, so ended up having to go and get two new tires before we could go to the Trafford Centre. Anyway, we got that sorted out so went off to try and get my laptop fixed.

I got a new appointment for 3pm, explained the problem, and asked how long it would take to fix it. I was expecting them to say some time tomorrow, i.e. Monday, but the 'Genius' said "we don't have the drive in stock so it will probably be Wednesday".

"OK, so what drives do you have in stock? I could do with getting it sorted ASAP so would be happy to pay for a drive upgrade".

"You can't. Although you've got the three year warranty it has to be a like-for-like replacement".

"I can't give you more money and have another drive installed?"

"No. And we don't have any in stock anyway."

"So it will definitely be ready on Wednesday?"

"It should be. I'll order the drive tomorrow and providing it turns up on Tuesday we should be able to have it done by Wednesday".

Hmmm.

I have to say that I love Apple computers but their after-sales support, in the UK at least, isn't quiet as efficient as it could be. So long story short, I won't be posting anything until late Wednesday at the very earliest.

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3.52pm on 12/11/08
Canon 1Ds Mark II
EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM
70mm
f/10
0.4s
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+1/3
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100
no
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4 April, 2008 // Facing north3 comments

I was going to write more this evening but both Tabby (11 months) and Finley (three in August) are sleeping really badly this evening – both are nodding off for around ten minutes then waking up again. Anyway, the upshot is that I've been trying to write this entry for almost two hours, and it's very slow progress.

So, the short version is that this is another shot of Central Pier, facing north; i.e. I'm further down the beach than yesterday.

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11.31am on 1/4/08
Canon 1Ds Mark II
EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM
57mm
f/9.0
1/160
aperture priority
+1/3
evaluative
100
no
RAW
C1 Pro
4x1
3 April, 2008 // weather front25 comments

If you flick through the other shots I've taken of Blackpool's Central Pier you will see that this is a vantage point I've used quite often, and its one that I'll probably use again.

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11.09am on 1/4/08
Canon 1Ds Mark II
EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM
45mm
f/8.0
1/500
aperture priority
+2/3
evaluative
100
no
RAW
C1 Pro
16x9
18 March, 2008 // under central pier #222 comments

This is an HDR, comprised of six bracketed exposures, of the underside of Central Pier in Blackpool. The original images were taken quite a while ago, but it's only recently that I've been able to produce a decent HDR. The problem, in this instance, was that they were shot at 17mm with my 17-40 f/4L and the CA (chromatic aberration) at the edges of the images made creating a convincing HDR difficult. Anyway, I finally realised that all I needed to do was create some CA-corrected 16bit TIFFs and use them to construct the HDR image rather than the original RAW files. So, I processed the originals in ACR and loaded the subsequent TIFFs into Photomatix Pro, from which I created this image.

If you like this one you might also want to take a look at the following:

Under the North Pier #1
Under the North Pier #2
Under the North Pier #3
Under Fleetwood Pier

I think that the first is probably still my favourite.

On a totally unrelated matter: my apologies if you have been trying to access the tutorial pages today, but we ran into a technical problem at around 10.00 am this morning. For some reason, that we haven't quite managed to get to the bottom of yet, the entire folder vanished from the server. Anyway, we managed to get everything replaced by late afternoon (though had to recreate a few of the static pages and re-upload the masking tutorial), so everything should now be back to normal. That said, if you are a subscriber and run into any problems, please let me know.

7 January, 2008 // the edge of evening23 comments

This is a shot of Blackpool's Central Pier, taken from roughly half way towards the North Pier. It's a scene I've photographed many times before, but I don't imagine that I'll tire of it any time soon.

Oh, and this is an HDR, constructed from three bracketed exposures.

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3.51pm on 7/1/08
Canon 1Ds Mark II
EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM
70mm
f/5.0
1/80, 1/25, and 1/8
aperture priority
n/a
evaluative
100
no
RAW
Photomatix Pro
2x1
24 October, 2007 // little planet #235 comments

Yesterday, I said that I wasn't especially happy with the first 'little planet' I put up. I'm much happier with this one :-)

And again, it was constructed using the instructions on daily dose of imagery.

Update: just a quick note to let you know that I won't be posting anything new today (15.10.07). I'll get something up tomorrow.

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around 3.45pm on 23/10/07
Canon 1Ds Mark II
EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM
16mm
f/8.0
1/1000 (and thereabouts)
aperture priority
-1/3 to -1
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100
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5x4
3 June, 2007 // the cruel sea26 comments

I can't think of anything much to say about this one other than that I'm reasonably happy with the way it turned out.

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2.23pm on 19/5/07
Canon 5D
EF 24-70 f/2.8L USM
70mm
f/4.5
1/2000
aperture priority
-1/3
evaluative
100
no
RAW
C1 Pro
2x1
20 November, 2006 // the lure of the sea21 comments

I'm not sure that this will be to everyone's taste, but I'm really pleased with it, not least because I usually don't get especially good results when panning at slow shutter speeds. On this occasion though, it worked out much better than I expected.

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4.08pm on 18/11/06
Canon 20D
EF 70-200 f/2.8L IS USM
200mm (320mm equiv.)
f/5.6
1/6
aperture priority
-1/3
evaluative
100
no
RAW
C1 Pro
no
28 March, 2006 // along the shore59 comments

First of all, thanks for all the positive comments on yesterday's shot; it's one of my recent favourites too :-)

Second, there were a number of interesting points that came up during the discussion, some of which I'll pick up over the next couple of days, but I thought I'd start with one raised by John (not John Washington I should add) who said:

"Looking through many of the images on this site, it becomes apparent that many many hours have been spent in the digital darkroom post-processing. They then start to loose the basic principles of what photography is all about - recording an image."

Right, here's my question, or point: and I don't want to get into the 'is it photography, is it digital art' question – i) because I don't think it matters, and ii) because the debate never goes anywhere (other than round in circles) – rather, I have a different question ... why is it that some people seem so insistent that photography must be about "recording an image" and nothing more? To me this is such a nonsensical position to adopt that I can't even begin to understand why someone would make this claim. It's like saying that all paintings should be impressionistic, or that sculpters should only produce lifelike figures, or any number of other "you should be doing this and not that" comments. How is it that people end up coming out with claims, that to me at least, seem totally indefensible?

As for this image (taken five minutes before yesterday's one): it's not as impressive as yesterday's, by quite some margin, but it does capture something of a Sunday morning's stroll along the shore.

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10.49am on 26/3/06
Canon 20D
EF 17-40 f/4L USM
17mm (27mm equiv.)
f/5.6
1/1600
aperture priority
+0.0
evaluative
100
no
RAW
C1 Pro
1x1
26 November, 2005 // central pier31 comments

Update: Following Jem's comment (below) I've amended this entry to take account of the fact that the price I was quoting for a new 50mm f/1.8 was a bit excessive.

I got a new lens yesterday, the 50mm f/1.4, to replace my f/1.8. Optically, there isn't anything wrong with the f/1.8 version – it's produced lot of shots that I'm happy with – but I have found the focussing a bit slow, particularly when trying to take portraits of the kids at a wide aperture. Anyway, I've replaced it with the f/1.4 (which was used to take today's and yesterday's shots) so am selling the old one (plus filter and hood). At today's prices, sourced from speedgraphic.co.uk and warehouse express (thanks Jem), the whole lot would cost £108.45, broken down as follows:

50mm f/1.8 II – £73.00
ES62AD hood – £17.95
B+W UV 010 MRC filter – £17.50

I'd be happy with something around the £60.00 mark so feel free to make me an offer. I would put it on eBay, but thought I'd see if anyone was interested first. Oh, and I do realise that this isn't much of a bargain if you live in the US – lenses being quite a bit cheaper over there – but did think someone in the UK might be interested.

Anyway, back to today's shot, which is a view of Blackpool's Central pier: this was as much a lens test as anything else, but I decided I liked the quality of light enough to put it up. Oh, and I can confirm that this is an exceptionally sharp lens. It's difficult to tell at this resolution, but the detail in the full size image is stunning. Much as I do like my zoom lenses, I don't think you can beat the sharpness of a good prime.

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2.36pm on 25/11/05
Canon 20D
EF 50mm f/1.4 USM
f/8.0
1/640
aperture priority
+0.0
evaluative
100
no
RAW
C1 Pro
no
9 August, 2005 // candy bar37 comments

First of all, thanks for all the wonderful comments on yesterday's entry. As I write this it has 130 comments, tied for first place with this one. I have to say, though I like it a lot, that I didn't expect anywhere near such a positive response, but I guess that it struck a chord with a lot of you in much the same way as it did for me.

Anyway, I did intend to put up another kite shot today, that I also like, but after yesterday I don't think I want to post them back-to-back. So here's something slightly different.

As for post-processing – and I mean this comment generally, not specifically in relation to this shot – my own view is that there isn't any photograph you could show me that isn't post-processed in one way or another: the tonal response of the paper on which it's printed, the colour balance of the screen on which it's viewed, the particular effects of development time, and so on, and so on, and so on – all of these are post-processing, and using Photoshop on a digital image isn't any different to the myriad of decisions that go into the making of any photographic image.

The bottom line, at least as far as I'm concerned, is that there is no such thing as unmediated perception, not when I or you look at something (when our memories affect the way we see something, etc), and certainly not when we photograph it. It's all one big interpretive effort the important bit of which is the end result. Are you left with some sort of artefact that's evocative? Is the end result worth looking at or not? If the answer's yes, then the amount of post-processing is, for me, a total irrelevance.

11.41pm on 2/8/05

Canon 20D

EF 17-40 f/4L USM

25mm (40mm equiv.)

f/8.0

1/60

aperture priority

+0.0

evaluative

100

no

RAW

C1 Pro

minor

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5 August, 2005 // deep blue25 comments

Continuing the "deep blue sky" theme, here's another one, and this one, better than yesterday's, demonstrates that polarising filters can be quite effective in deepening the colour of the sky.

Update: as a couple of people have asked I've put up the original version of this shot here:

.../archives/deep_blue.php

All I did with this one was up the contrast with the Curves tool, boost the saturation a little with Hue/Saturation, and use another Curves adjustment layer to put a bit of colour (and a bit more contrast) into the woodwork in the foreground.

11.38am on 2/8/05

Canon 20D

EF 17-40 f/4L USM

17mm (27mm equiv.)

f/5.6

1/640

aperture priority

+0.0

evaluative

100

no

RAW

C1 Pro

perspective corrected

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4 August, 2005 // tangibly blue53 comments

I'm a bit late putting up tonight's entry as I've been processing a set of images that need to be finished by tomorrow, of which this is one – a shot of the Big Wheel on Blackpool's Central pier.

Update: I decided to enter this shot for this week's Photo Friday challenge – Complexity.

11.32am on 2/8/05

Canon 20D

EF 17-40 f/4L USM

17mm (27mm equiv.)

f/8.0

1/160

aperture priority

+0.0

evaluative

100

no

RAW

C1 Pro

minor

captured
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I thought I'd put this one up too, by way of a companion to yesterday's shot. Oh, and tomorrow it's back to the portraits. I have three more that I want to put up, all of which I'm really pleased with, so it will be interesting to see what you make of them.

5.11pm on 22/7/05

Canon 20D

EF 17-40 f/4L USM

24mm (38mm equiv.)

f/5.6

1/80

aperture priority

-1/3

evaluative

100

no

RAW

C1 Pro

minor

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30 July, 2005 // even more to see21 comments

This scene intrigued me as I really wanted to know what was originally in the speech bubble before it was amended. I suspect it was probably something slightly more lewd, and probably wasn't all that amusing, but it caught my imagination at the time. And, as with my previous shot, this was taken on Blackpool's Central pier.

5.10pm on 22/7/05

Canon 20D

EF 17-40 f/4L USM

31mm (50mm equiv.)

f/5.6

1/100

aperture priority

-2/3

evaluative

100

no

RAW

C1 Pro

minor distortion

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