Archive for 2010

Event Photography – Big Family Book Day

Sunday, October 24th, 2010

Had a pleasant day out at Tatton Park yesterday photographing an event run by the local libraries. Big Family Book Day was aimed at promoting reading activities within families, and visitors were able to make badges, draw, colour, lie on the floor, sneak behind the curtains to look at the all the stuffed animal heads mounted on the walls, or even explore the history of paper-making and writing.

The History of Writing - well a little bit of it at least.

The History of Writing - well a little bit of it at least.

Not only that but there were three excellent speakers to entertain visitors.


First there was That Poetry Bloke (Craig Bradley), a wonderful entertainer with an interesting take on language and words geared towards a younger audience but certainly of interest to me.


Then came the turn of Matt Buckingham, illustrator of the Gruesome Truths series of childrens historical books. He entertained us by sharing the process of being a given a book to illustrate and showing the page layouts and instructions he receives on what kind of an illustration is required to fit the space.


He even did a few drawings for us.


Finally came Jim Eldridge writer of over 250 TV and radio scripts and with over 1 million book sales to his credit. Jim encouraged the audience to participate in a team story development process to show how scripts are written. And he also mentioned how he was thrown off the writing team at East Enders for suggesting that the story lines were a little dark and could perhaps do with a little humour injected into them.

Still I wasn’t there to listen, I was there to take pictures and that wasn’t as easy as I anticipated, huge spaces, low light levels, and not very many people at any one time. Photography made a little more difficult by having to obtain signatures from parents who sometimes objected to having (very good) photographs of their children used to promote the free event they were attending and consequently help to attract further funding for events like it in the future. I then had to remember all of their children and ensure I didn’t accidentally include them in any shots after that – and they were all over the place.

Still I’d got all I needed by around 2:30 and went off for a wander round the park and see if I could catch any rutting deer…


…or autumn colours…


Equipment used: Canon 40D, 17-85mm IS EF-S, 70-200 EF L, Metz AF58.

Michael Hadfield

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Conservation Work

Sunday, August 8th, 2010

Had a great day out in the middle of nowhere yesterday doing some work for The Churches Conservation Trust. My task was to record the enthusiastic work of a group of volunteers who were tidying up a very overgrown cemetery. The Church itself is a fantastic building with an interior design I have never encountered before. There is a gallery running round the inside of the building added so that more people could be accommodated for services.

The Church itself is rarely used nowadays, though a wedding will be taking place there later on in the year, consequently it is down to a small group of dedicated local people who do their best to look after the building and grounds. There is no regular congregation able to fund maintenance of the building and so that responsibility has fallen into the hands of the Churches Conservation Trust.

The weather was unfavourable, not only for outside work, but also for photography, with frequent heavy showers. The grey skies creating overexposed featureless highlights and a frequent gloom making ISO 400 the minimum usable rating. I used my Canon 40D with the Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4.0-5.6 IS USM Lens lens for all of the shots. ISO shifted up to 800 only when I would otherwise have been using maximum aperture. Exposure metered on Tv with a little exposure compensation dialled in from time to time. Metz 58 AF-1 Canon Digital Flashgun was used for the lime-washing images – the nice white room meant a reasonable amount of light bouncing around even though the ceiling was dark and high. It was also used to illuminate the walls around the large stained glass window behind the altar. Exposure balanced so the stained glass still retained the wonderful glow of transmitted light.

The volunteers had a great time, and the organiser Rohit Jiwa, provided lunch for everyone, and I even had a call from the editor of the Saddleworth Independent wanting some photos.

More photos on my facebook page

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