Wednesday, 30 July 2014

My love of lighting

As a keen photographer, lighting is always at the forefront of my mind - after all, the word photography literally means "drawing with light" from ancient Greek.  A great photograph relies heavily on getting the lighting just right as without that, the subject will be flat and uninteresting, just as a beautifully designed and decorated room would be almost ruined without having fabulous lighting to set it off.

I thought I would try to explain some of the different ways of using light in photography by linking the ideas to lighting that you use in the home.

So, for example, task lighting.  At home, you might use a spotlight to illuminate a particular area where you want to work in the kitchen say.  Similarly, by capturing a shaft of light on a stormy day, you can transform a fairly ordinary photo into one that really stands out.

Wall Spot Light

Enhancing the mood by capturing a shaft of light

Ambient lighting creates the mood, both for the room and the photograph.  Ideally, this should be warm and inviting and is often produced by using a number of lamps around the room creating pockets of diffused light, rather than using one overhead light which tends to produce a rather flat, dull result.  Think of this type of lighting as that which you see at dawn and dusk, when the sun is very low in the sky producing warm diffused light.
Soft ambient light produces warm inviting pictures

Table lamp

Finally, there is accent lighting, which gives texture and focus, adding depth and shade, with shadows in some corners and pools of light in others. An example of this in the home might be plinth lighting in the kitchen, particularly where it captures the rough hewn surface of a beautiful natural stone floor.  Similarly, the sun creates shadows and depth of field, ensuring that your image is not flat and uninteresting to the eye.

Plinth lighting

Add depth with accent lighting

Now, go grab your camera and see if you too can capture the light!

Thanks to for the examples of home lighting that I have used in this blog post.  :)

Sunday, 13 July 2014

My Favourite Holiday Memory

When Villa Pia asked for a photo that encapsulates my favourite holiday memory, I spent a very pleasant couple of hours reminiscing about holidays from my own childhood through to adventures in my teens and twenties, to family holidays now.  But what to choose?  Should it be the pic of me playing cricket on the beach with my Dad in the 1960s (he was blessed with 3 girls, but that didn't stop him instilling his love of cricket into us!)? Or how about one from the crazy couple of months I spent backpacking around Europe with my bestie from school in the early 1980s?   Maybe one from our safari honeymoon, enjoying sundowners whilst viewing the extraordinary game?

No, I plumped for this photo as, for me, it encapsulates all that is great about holidays - getting away from real life, having fun and making memories with the kids!  :)

Thursday, 10 July 2014

Outfit of the Day - Perfect Summer

Outfit of the Day

Warehouse 1980s dress, / John Lewis three quarter sleeve top, / Converse canvas flat shoes, / Fiorelli handbag,  / Goldmajor sterling silver amber jewelry, / Orla kiely umbrella, / Breo Ladies Zen Watch-Blue Watch B-TI-ZEN4 | the Watch Hut,

When The Mads wrote about a wonderful competition they are running in conjunction with The Watch Hut to design an Outfit of the Day, I was brimming full of ideas in my mind as I had just returned from a wonderful day at the Ladies' Singles Finals at Wimbledon and thought it would be great to put together an outfit for that occasion, but that would be smart yet casual enough too for lots of other events, from lunch with the girls, a walk to the pub on a summer evening, or even to taking the kids to school.

All my selections for clothing come from John Lewis as the prize is JL vouchers so I'll be ahead of the game if I am lucky enough to win!  :)

Who doesn't love a multi coloured dress?  So easy to wear, no mixing and matching of tops and bottoms to worry about, no waistbands digging in, and yet with all those colours, easy to match with lots of other items already in your wardrobe too. This 80s inspired dress is from Warehouse is a bargain at only £42 and it will look great all day long, with any marks I manage to make on it with food or drink spillages masked by the lovely pattern.  I've teamed it with practical and sporty cream coloured converse as there is always loads of walking to be done at Wimbledon, and of course, a pretty umbrella because you can never trust an English summer!  A pretty pastel blue shrug cardigan will keep the chill off as the sun loses its heat later in the day, and I'll be able to stuff all my tickets/programmes and other paraphenalia in this gorgeous tote bag from Fiorella.  The finishing touches are this sporty blue watch from Breo at the The Watch Hut and a cute pair of amber earrings

This is my entry for the Watch Hut competition