And very inteseting trials they were too!
I am liking the look of this set of images, and the treatment that has been applied to this colourful building near St Lawrence Gap.
And very inteseting trials they were too!
I am liking the look of this set of images, and the treatment that has been applied to this colourful building near St Lawrence Gap.
Yesterday I wrote about my work with Aurora HDR 2019. I have already learnt a few new things. And this is why practise is so important.
FIrstly I worked out how to install the Lightroom plugin, so now I can export direct from Lightroom to Aurora and save straight back to Lightroom.
That is annoyance number one out of the way - having to navigate Windows Explorer to find the images to edit and then save back - a lot of time saved there.
Next is the batch processing.
I created a very quick web page in the new travel section of my website called Barbados where I quickly added the 22 batch processed images. Batch processed using Aurora HDR - very little input from me.
Now I did not know that there were more settings that I could select, which I found this morning. That explains why there are issues that need sorting, which I have done and all is fine.
So tomorrow morning I will update the images and have a nice shiny set of 25 images on this page of my website.
And that is the point of part of this process - next is the really big grand planned edit which I might start running over the weekend - this is very ambitious!
But things are looking promising.
You can buy Aurora HDR using my affiliate link, and if you enter the discount code MCEVOY you get £10 off your purchase which is nice.
I have been thinking about my photography for some time now. I feel like I have been doing the same things for a long time now. This is both image capture and image processing.
I am looking to change things in 2019, starting with my image processing. My needs have changed recently, so now I am asking myself the question - Aurora HDR vs Lightroom – which is best? Can Aurora HDR replace Lightroom in my workflow?
And can I use Aurora HDR 2019 to batch produce images for an entire website?
In this post I will explore some of the features that are important to me in Aurora HDR, and show you some of the things Aurora HDR can do.
This all came out of a comment I made in an Improve Photography article, where I stated that I had bought Aurora HDR but had not got round to using it yet.
Due to the popularity and authority of Improve Photography this comment was picked up by Skylum who got in touch with me.
I’m sorry but I cannot bring myself to say “reached out” to me - is that just me being typically English do you think?
And they offered to help me learn how to use Aurora HDR. How utterly nice of them.
And teach me is exactly what they did.
One to one training with Abba from Skylum
I had an hour and a half with Abba, which was most excellent. Not only did I get to grips with Aurora HDR 2019, but he also introduced me to Luminar. And that was on a Sunday evening here in the UK.
I had bought my own version of Aurora HDR. Since Skylum made contact with me I have become an affiliate for Skylum, and you can buy any of their software using my affiliate link here. Enter my own discount code MCEVOY and you will get £10 off your purchase.
This is the first time I have ever had my own discount code which I think is pretty cool!!
Skylum also gave me a version of Luminar for me to have a play with and write about.
As I said, that is one for another time, but Luminar might give me what I am looking for as well. Lets stick with Aurora HDR 2019 for today though.
OK – that is all that stuff out of the way at the beginning.
This is the point of this post really.
I mentioned before that I am looking for something new and different. I think I am after a change having done the same or similar for years.
I have been using Lightroom since release 1.0 in 2007. That is 11 years ago. Lightroom has evolved over the years into Lightroom Classic, Lightroom CC and Lightroom Mobile.
And I have evolved with Adobe over this time.
Now I have to state categorically that there is absolutely nothing wrong with Lightroom. I use it day in day out, and all my images are stored in a single Lightroom Catalogue.
Every image I take is imported into Lightroom, processed in Lightroom and exported out of Lightroom in Jpeg format for use outside of the bubble that is my office.
I use Photoshop for final editing of images when I have to.
So Lightroom is at the very core of my digital photography workflow, and is also tasked with looking after my Lightroom catalogue.
The world has moved on rather a lot since I started using Lightroom. I am 11 years older. I have hit the ages of 40 and 50 since Lightroom 1.0.
Now I know that Lightroom has evolved, but has the methodology that Lightroom uses evolved?
Has the workflow that I use evolved along with technology? I think not – I think that things can be done in completely different ways these days.
The advances in software and technology are of course remarkable and seemingly never ending. And I want to make use of them as and when I can.
This is not using technology for the sake of it – this is about using the technology to give me better results quicker.
I want to align my workflows with the best that technology can offer. Hopefully I will be able to produce more better images quicker.
I need to word that better – I feel a catchphrase coming on.
Making the most of technology in photography – better images quicker and more of them!
Sorry where was I?
I have two distinct areas of work.
This is the work that I do for clients. Clients book me and I photograph their buildings for them. This work needs a consistent workflow, and Lightroom is just fine for this at the moment.
I have a structured workflow with which I can produce the quality of images I want to consistently.
So for now that is just fine and will stay just as it is until I have mastered architectural photography processing using Aurora HDR.
The trial with Aurora HDR produced an image that I really liked – I just need to dial it back a bit.
This is a completely different business area for me. This is work done for me for publishing on travel and travel photography websites. And quickly.
But I want a distinctive stylised look that is all mine.
This is my new thing.
The images on my Photos of Santorini website were created using Lightroom and Photoshop.
I am not sure how I am going to create the photos for Paxos Travel Guide.
But for my trial website, name to be determined, I am going to try the Aurora HDR/ Luminar approach exclusively.
I can do this as I can’t do any harm on a trial website!!
This was a website I was already intending creating to practise with Wordpress themes - the thing that I have a complete mental block with at the moment.
So I am going to create a new website, produce 25 images super quick and get them posted along with short posts. This will get that website up and on the internet quickly and will be the third experiment with websites.
This will be a test in quickly producing a travel photography website.
Tell you what – lets go with Barbados Photos, or a variant of that. Yes it will be my website with 25 photos of Barbados.
Marvellous – glad that is sorted.
Well first I am going to play around with one image and describe the processing of that image, and then go on to the batch processing.
The image above is three photos converted into one HDR image using the following steps.
First I selected the three images in Lightroom and exported them “with Lightroom adjustments” into Aurora HDR 2019.
After this I let Aurora do its thing, and exported the image straight back to Lightroom
OK - that is the image that you can see with Aurora HDR doing all the work.
And I have to say the results are not bad at all.
OK - I have let Aurora HDR create one image from scratch pretty much - what about doing a load of images?
This is what i really wanted to explore and write about here - the batch processing capabilities of Aurora HDR
You start this process in Aurora HDR 2019.
Select the images to add. I have put these in a separate folder in Lightroom, so all I need to do is navigate to this folder and select all the images.
The next screenshots show the process
Once that was done all I needed to do was export the images back to Lightroom.
Not sure to be honest. I set it running and left it to it.
This is the process I followed. In reality it was a bit more convoluted than this as I had already played around with some of the images, but this would be the process from scratch.
You can view the 22 images that I batch processed on a temporary page on my website titled Barbados.
Basically Aurora has taken these 22 images, analysed them individually and then processed them all using the look I assigned, which in this case was landscape realistic.
Aurora HDR 2019 has processed each image individually but automatically which I find quite remarkable.
And how did Aurora HDR 2019 get on with processing the images?
A mixed bag to be honest, and some I am going to go back and rework. Some are great, some not so intriguing
Some of the images certainly need redoing, some look really good. I was pleased that I managed to use a selection of images with varying content.
I need to repeat this process and see if the blurry images are down to me not making the right selections before starting the editing process, but you get the idea.
22 images processed virtually all by the software with minimal intervention from me!
That was the hope.
But I have to say I am loving some of the images, and there is a definite future use here for me with Aurora HDR 2019.
And to conclude this post let me tell you a bit about Aurora HDR and the remarkable new software that I have been introduced to by Skylum.
Aurora HDR 2019 is a Lightroom plug-in. The software produces HDR images, either using single images or by using bracketed sets of images.
Last week on Improve Photography I wrote about the five things that I really liked from my initial play with the software.
Here they are
You can view the first five images that I created using Aurora HDR 2019 in my article on Improve Photography.
No. Is there such a thing? Do I want there to be such a thing?
Yes and no. I want to process my images, but I want to do less of the work myself and let the technology take over.
I was going to title this post “Is Aurora HDR 2019 the future of digital image processing”
I was wondering if this would give me what I wanted, which is bulk processing of lot of images.
And it has not. Not yet. But I think that with a but more time and the knowledge I have gained to date I might be onto something here.
I am going to repeat this exercise with a set of architectural images from a shoot, a set of images that were not picks from a commercial shoot, and see what happens. I am also going to redo the Barbados photos.
Well this has all been a bit of a revelation to me.
One thing I am going to is create another new website which is just photos and the metadata. And yes this idea has just come to me writing this post.
I can see Aurora HDR 2019 becoming a par tof my digital image processing workflow, but not replacing Lightroom.
I have a workflow in mind which I will work on, and envisage myself using both Lightroom and Aurora HDR to process images to produce the look I am after.
I will import images into Lightroom, organise them, crop and straighten and then send over en masse to Aurora HDR for batch processing. I will then export the new images back into Lightroom where I will add the metadata and the add these images to a new website, or a page on my website.
Check back to my photography blog to see what happens.
For the rest of 2018 I am going to continue to play with Aurora HDR, and I will write a further post in the New year once I am more proficient.
And give Luminar a try as well.
So to answer the original question - Aurora HDR vs Lightroom – which is best?
Neither. They both have their roles in my digital image processing.
This is an image that might make it onto my website Paxos Travel Guide. Taken using my Canon 6D and processed with one click using Aurora HDR 2019 (two if you include the crop) to give this bright vibrant early morning travel photography shot taken on the wonderful Greek Island of Paxos.
After a break of a couple of months it is back to my second travel photography website Paxos Travel Guide.
Photos of Santorini was all about taking photos on this wonderful Greek Island. Paxos Travel Guide is more of a travel website. On this website I tell you everything that you need to know before you go to Paxos. And there are lots of lovely photos of course.
In this blog post I will explain what this website is all about, what I have done, what I need to and also why I am creating another website.
I want to work in a different way, and use my unique talents to make money in the way I want to.
I am comfortable saying that I am pretty good at photography. Now granted I am not the best photographer in the world, I am not even the best photographer in my family, but I can get by making money doing my photography.
Not sure if this is a talent but my personality is certainly unique to me!
In the last couple of years my writing has progressed really well. This is in part due to the practise and intent with which I have worked on my writing day in day out.
My wife and I love to travel – that is our thing. Going to new places together.
So put all these things together and travel photography websites sound like a great idea to me.
Basically I need to get visitors to my website in large enough volumes to make my website commercially attractive to advertisers.
I also need the content on my website to be good enough to rank highly on Google, and for people to want to read all the content and then share it.
Not much pressure then!
This website is now complete – well as complete as it is going to be. This is a light version of what Paxos Travel Guide will become. I am considering this website to be a trial of a format that I can use to quickly produce other such websites – I have plenty of photos after all.
I have struggled with this. I have tried numerous themes without success. I bought one and found it completely unworkable and baffling to use – so much so that I fought hard for a refund.
I had settled on the Divi Themes, which I bought on Black Friday at a discounted price. I did plenty of research to make sure I was happy with the themes, and then waited for the Black Friday sale.
And this is how I do Black Friday – I wait to buy things I was going to buy anyway and get them on the day at a discounted price.
My plan was to use Divi for 12 months on all my websites, which would be great for me as I have three websites now and more in plan and I only want to have to learn one Wordpress Theme.
My first go did not go too well, and I had to get Bluehost to restore my Photos of Santorini website from a backup.
For now I have decided to stick with the free theme and create a brand new website which will be my Divi theme playground.
I think in the IT world they call these things sandpits.
I have not decided what this URL will be, but this is something I will think about and research between now and Christmas, when I will get some down time to play with themes.
It will be based around the Rhodes Travel Guide subject though.
That will give me the time to come up with a layout of my own that I am happy with, that I can play with as and when I have the time, without of course deleting a major part of the content live!
It turns out Photos of Santorini has become a trial site for lots of things, which has been really good as I am in a better place to progress Paxos Travel Guide, and now have some template type stuff that I can use on other websites going forwards.
I am even thinking of moving my main website to Wordpress now, which should help with SEO. I have put that on hold after the first go with Divi though.
I have a spread sheet and Evernote list where I have recorded what I did to the Photos of Santorini website which I will follow for the rest of the creation of content for the Paxos website.
Created the website with the URL https://paxostravelguide.com
Bought a logo for the website
Written three blog posts
First I need the titles of the remaining posts sorting
Then I need to produce the planned 30 posts and static pages.
Choose and edit the images for the pages and image galleries
Add all the images
Come up with an image gallery
And then do the back of house boring stuff, metadata, links etc.
Remove the dates from the blog post URLs (looking at the URLs above).
Sort Google search console
Sort www. or not www.
Add internal links
Add titles and descriptions/ snippets
Once all that is done promote the website
Yes 5 months.
The single most important job is to come up with great titles, with great keywords. I need these posts all to rank at number 1 (if possible) on Google for that search term.
And the key to this is the keywords in the title and how I write about them. That is the thing I am going to spend time on. Everything follows on from this.
Well I have signed up to Project 24, which you can find on the Income School website. The idea of Project 24 is to replace your income with a passive income from niche websites within 24 months.
Now if you are thinking that this is just another online get rich quick thing then I have to tell you something.
This is the brainchild of Jim Harmer, the creator of Improve Photography. I am a writer on Improve Photography, and have now produced over 30 articles for that website.
I know Jim, and trust his opinions and advice.
It was Jim who suggested I get a .com web URL, which makes perfect sense for what I am trying to achieve.
So this is where I am getting my info and advice. Project 24 and the community of good folk there.
And this is why I am rather vague about some of the stuff I am doing with my websites – we are after all paying for the guidance and tuition.
It would be wrong for me to publish everything I have learned as we as members of Project 24 have paid for this info, and it is part of the income to the website for Jim and his business partner Ricky.
I will write about the stuff that is published on my website and available for all to see, but there is stuff that I will not be writing about.
When will it be done?
I am hoping the end of December 2018, but realistically think it will be the end of January 2019. I just don’t see myself getting that volume of work produced in December, which we are already in.
Why am I putting myself through all this pain? As I said above, to hopefully create a passive income that replaces the need to earn money from my photography and consultancy work.
That is the plan. My ultimate dream is time freedom and money freedom.
Sure I do. I am really enjoying watching the search rankings for the keywords on photosofsantorini.com developing.
I have created this website all by myself, with all my own words and photos.
And I love travel and if I could find some way of travel photography and travel websites providing my income I will be very very happy.
I have to juggle my time with the production of my weekly blog posts and fortnightly articles on Improve Photography.
This is in addition to earning a living.
So I better shut up and get back to work on Paxos Travel Guide
Rhodes Travel Guide. That is one that I am going to work on in May, when we return there.
Between the end of January and then I am going to focus on other stuff. I need to give the various websites time to bed in with Google and hopefully perform well enough to earn me some money.
And then I should really stop and see what happens with these websites.
Although I did have an idea the other day…
I need to remember that my website Paxos Travel Guide is just that – a travel guide to help people planning on going to the wonderful Greek Island of Paxos.
It is not a photography website.
It is a travel website with photographs taken by me – that is the edge that I hope will help with the success of my website. My writing combined with my photos.
I need to convey what it is like to experience going on a holiday to Paxos.
I want visitors to my website to be able to make an informed decision about going to Paxos or not.
Getting to Paxos and getting home again
Eating and drinking in Paxos
Places to go in Paxos
Things to do
Being in Paxos
What it is really like holidaying in Paxos
My holiday journal
On our last holiday to Paxos I wrote a daily journal. I sat on my iPad on the balcony in our room, or at a table by the pool at Hotel Bastas and wrote over 20,000 words, which are to be form, a large part of the content.
And I have the locations of everywhere I went and photographed.
I will have to keep reminding myself that this is a travel website with photos!
Paxos is a wonderful Greek Island. It is very small, very picturesque. Paxos is very popular with British and Italian tourists, and is also frequented by Greeks from elsewhere in this vast country.
I have been to and photographed most of Paxos, and the neighbouring island of Antipaxos.
All I need to do now is do justice in my new website to the Greek Island of Paxos, and hopefully make it good enough to be of interest and help to people, and of course to the search engines at Google.
That is enough talking about this website, although it is good to revisit what I have done, what I have learned from the creation of Photos of Santorini and how I plan the production of the rest of this website to best serve me in the future.
Off to work I go.
2 months to get this website done, and the clock has started ticking.
Pop back to my blog for frequent updates, and of course please checkout the website which will be updated live as and when there is new content.
A dull question but hopefully an interesting answer will ensue.
We all have lots of images in our Lightroom Catalogues. I have other 60,000 images in mine. And I often am faced with the challenge of how to find images in Lightroom Classic – now I have a new plug-in called Excire Search Pro which helps me with this.
Excire Search is a Lightroom plug-in which searches the images in a Lightroom catalogue using the content of the images – that is the point – Excire Search uses the content of the images in the Lightroom Catalogue, and searches using an example image to find similar images with similar content.
Is Excire Search going to help you find images in your Lightroom Catalogue? Read on and you will find out.
By way of a spoiler the answer is yes, it will help. Quite a lot.
I was approached by Excire Search to trial this product, and I am an affiliate member, so if you click on my affiliate link here and buy Excire Search I get a commission.
Of course, I have an incentive to write good things about this plug-in. What you will find in this blog post though is my honest opinions on Lightroom and Excire, and their relative search capabilities.
This is not an advert for Excire Search, this is me writing about a tool that, now I have it, I will use regularly in my photography work.
OK now that is out of the way back to the subject in question.
I need to give you a bit of background to Lightroom to start with.
Lightroom Classic is the version of Lightroom where the photos are stored locally on a hard drive (of one sort or another). Lightroom Classic is the current evolution of what was Lightroom. This is what the standalone version starting with Lightroom 1.0 released in 2007 has evolved into, which is now obtained through the Creative Cloud and a monthly subscription.
Lightroom CC is the newer cloud-based version of Lightroom. Photos are stored on the cloud. This is not the full version of Lightroom but has features which you will not find in Lightroom Classic.
Lightroom CC was released in 2017
Lightroom Mobile is the version of Lightroom that is used on mobile devices. Photos are accessed from Lightroom through collections which are synced via the internet.
Lightroom Mobile is free but you need actual Lightroom Classic or CC to get the photos into collections.
For completeness there is also a web based Lightroom, which you can access at this link.
I use Lightroom Classic – the original full version now available through the Creative Cloud.
I do not use Lightroom CC as this is the cloud-based version, where your photos are stored by Adobe in the cloud.
I have no doubt that at some point in the future I will move over, as we all will.
That is why this article is about advanced searches in Lightroom Classic.
There are various search tools and filters in Lightroom Classic that I use all the time.
I use the following
Picks and rejects filters
Other metadata in the tool bar
Having said that my images are organised in a very logical, comprehensive but simple file structure meaning that I know where most of my images are.
Lightroom Classic has face recognition technology, but to be honest I do not use this as I do not photograph people, only buildings and nice places.
Read on for the good bit.
Lightroom CC - has Adobe Sensei technology.
I don’t have Lightroom CC, so not being at all familiar with it I decided to let Adobe explain Sensei search technology. This is what Adobe say on their website on their excellent help pages
“Start typing in the search bar, and Lightroom CC automatically offers suggestions to help you quickly find what you need. Search for cameras, locations, and other metadata with ease. Also, your enabled filters are kept neatly organized in the search box. You can even search for a filter using its name (try 'camera:').
But does Sensei analyse the content of an image?
It does carry out some form of auto tagging, but it is mainly intelligent search functionality.
I should explain this. I have evolved from Lightroom 1.0 – yes, I was there at the very beginning in 2007 – to the Lightroom Classic that we have now.
I have heard that there are potential conflicts if you have Lightroom CC and Lightroom Classic installed.
Now I do not know if this is true, but I am not going to risk it. I don’t want Lightroom CC at the moment as I do not want to pay for cloud storage. I don’t actually want or indeed need this as I have my own arrangements in place.
So, I, like most photographers so I believe, use Lightroom Classic.
I nearly forgot about Lightroom Mobile. I use this on my iPad and iPhone. All the images are organised into collections, so searching for images is not something that I do – it is done before things are added to Lightroom Mobile.
I use Lightroom mobile as my mobile working folders.
Excire Search is a plug-in for Lightroom Classic. It provides advanced search capabilities using a content-based image retrieval engine.
Or to put it another way it searches using the content of images in my Lightroom Catalogue.
Basically, Excire Search uses the content of an image. I know.
I thought this was just another clever piece of software with no practical use but just think about this for a second.
Once you have installed Excire Search you have to initialise it. This is basically the process by which the software analyses all the images in your Lightroom Catalogue.
This took two overnight sessions to analyse the more than 60,000 images in my Lightroom Catalogue.
I wondered why it took so long. But I was soon to find out.
The plug-in analyses the content of images. Yes, I know.
Let me jump straight into some examples which demonstrate the point wonderfully well.
This is one of the things I am working on at the moment – a collection of architectural travel photography images.
I want to get a set of similar images, and my starting point is one of those famous blue domed church roofs you find on the wonderful Greek Island of Santorini.
If you want to see more of my work about my photos of Santorini check out my website called, erm Photos of Santorini.
Sorry had to get that plug in.
This is the example image that I use as the basis for the search.
And this is the results of the first 50 images that Excire found in my Lightroom Catalogue.
Not bad. Now the search did produce a couple of shots of the domed roof of the church in Altea, Spain, and also one house on the Greek Island of Rhodes which has part of the roof with a sort of dome, but other than that pretty good search results.
Lets try something else
Next, I am going to use the famous white buildings of Santorini – another theme that I am working with at the moment.
This is the example image
And this is the results of the first 50 images that Excire found in my Lightroom Catalogue
This is the example image
And this is the results of the first 50 images that Excire found in my Lightroom Catalogue
This is the example image
And this is the results of the first 50 images that Excire found in my Lightroom Catalogue
This is the example image
And this is the results of the first 50 images that Excire found in my Lightroom Catalogue
That should do for now. You should get the idea. Pretty cool eh?
I know that the search results included a few oddities but that is always going to be the way. I have to say that these are typical of the searches that I will use Excire Search Pro for in my daily work.
Well I will now that I have the excellent search tool to use.
This is the one that I needed to spend some time and work out. Check back to my photography blog in a few months to see how I get on with this feature.
Me and keywords
I am not a great one at keywording images. I add keywords to images when I export them anywhere outside of my hard drive. This is always the last thing I do before exporting images out of Lightroom.
I was always going to keyword images on import, but it never happened.
And now that I have over 60,000 keywords I think that ship has sailed.
Or has it?
It adds keywords to every image during the initialisation process.
Yes – it does this based on the image content.
And that is how I keyword images prior to exporting – as well as adding some essential data I add keywords that describe the image.
This sounds to good to be true.
By the way as I am writing this, I am following a video tutorial on the Excire website and checking Lightroom to see what is going on.
In a separate place. They are not in the Lightroom Catalogue.
Excire Search Pro can assign up to 535 keywords to images in your Lightroom catalogue. The non-pro version 120.
I tried this quickly but need more time before committing to adding the keywords Excire Search Pro has assigned to my images.
I have spent a long time assembling my Lightroom Catalogue and this is not something to rush into.
During the initialisation process Excire Search also identifies the dominant colours in an image – this is another thing that I am definitely interested in.
You can get Excire Search from this link here – this is my affiliate link, so if you buy the software from this link I get a commission. You don’t pay any more that going direct to the website.
You can also get a 30-day free trial here.
99 Euros for the Search Pro version, and 49 Euros for the Search version. I have used the Euro prices for now – we have not left yet after all!!
When I write an update post I might be showing the price in £s though.
This is a one-off purchase and the software is installed on your Mac or PC hard drive.
Oh yes, you don’t need the internet to run this software.
The price includes bug fixes and minor updates and improvements, but not version upgrades and major additions.
I have not tried out all the features of Excire Search Pro. I need to look more at
Search by dominant colour
Actually – here is a screenshot of the options available in Lightroom
I was approached by Sol at Excire Search to work with them on the promotion of their new plug-in.
At first it sounded like one of those things that was very clever but would be of little use to me, but I agreed to work with Excire, and committed to write about the plug-in on my blog and also on the Improve Photography website. I am a freelance writer for Improve Photography, producing fortnightly articles on all things photography.
Little did I know that I would find the ability to search my entire Lightroom Catalogue by an example photo so useful – this is something that I have used a lot in the two weeks since I installed Excire Search.
I am interested to see if I use Excire Search in the future once the novelty has worn off. I think I will, it has a place in my workflow for certain specific work that I do.
You can read my introduction to Excire Search on Improve Photography. I have scheduled a review article on Improve Photography for Feb/ March 2019. I will write an in-depth update on my blog in the spring where I will describe how much I am using it, what I use it for and what benefits this search tool has given me and my photography business.
Basically, if you need the things I need when searching for images in my Lightroom Catalogue then Excire Search Pro is an excellent choice. If you don’t need these search capabilities then fine – it is not for you!
Yes it’s Black Friday. Don’t worry it will soon be over.
Are you a Lightroom user?
Fed up not being able to find images in your Lightroom Catalogue?
Are you looking for advanced search capabilites in Lightroom?
Then you are in the right place. Today you can get Excire Search Pro at a discounted price of €55. Excire Search is €33 today.
Normal prices are €99 and €49.
If you want to read more about Excire Search pro check out my article on Improve Photography.
And yes I use this excellent Lightoom plug-in to find things like this in my Lightroom Catalogue!
Roll on Saturday. Black Friday will be behind us then.
I don’t have a problem with Black Friday per se, but this week I have suffered the worst deluge of unwanted emails since GDPR.
And does anyone remember that?
Come in everybody - let’s keep Black Friday to just one day please. We already have Cyber Monday to look forward to!!
Yesterday on Improve Photography I wrote an article titled Advanced searching in Lightroom Classic with Excire Search.
This article introduces a new Lightroom Classic plug-in called Excire Search, which I have juust started using.
I used this very clever plug-in to search for photos with a blue dome, by adding an example photo.
Next I asked Excire Search to search my Lightroom Catalogue using this image as the example image.
And this is what Excire Search came up with.
Not bad. And all in less than 10 seconds.
That is quick!!
More on this next week.
I photograph buildings and places. I specialise in architectural, landscape and travel photography. Sometime I am asked to photograph other things.
I have already photographed a table for a client. The other week I had to photograph some different coloured corner caps for this table. How do I take great product photos at home on a budget? With a fantastic piece of kit that I bought for £10 on Amazon (delivered courtesy of Prime two days after order).
That is how. Read on to find out all about how I got shots like this one at home spending £10.
Here is one of the photos
Want to know more? Then read on.
What was the job?
I have photographed this table previously for Mike Fabb – here is a link to his website.
This is a new enterprise that Mike is working on with a new website which has recently been created.
The job was to provide photos of the 10 different coloured corner caps which you can get with the table to suit the décor of the room intended to house this lovely piece of modern bespoke furniture.
My usual camera gear - List all with Amazon Affiliate links
2 cups of coffee (Alta Rica)
Blu Tack (don’t worry I will explain)
And this bit of kit, which was the studio and lighting
Photo Studio Tent. Or to give it it’s full title from Amazon
Photo Studio Tent, Mini Foldable Photography Studio Portable Light Box Kit with LED Light, LED Light Tent (22.6cmx23x24cm)+ Two Backgrounds (White and Black), Shoot Amazing Pictures Like a Pro
There were 10 different coloured caps, so that is 10 photos which were identical bar the colour of the actual corner cap itself – same composition, lighting, brightness, colour etc etc.
That was the brief.
So that what was I set off doing.
First thing was to assemble the Photo Studio Tent, which took me a couple of minutes. It comes with LED lights built-in which is pretty cool.
Once assembled and the lights plugged in and working nicely I put together my camera gear and placed one of the caps inside the tent.
First thing was to change from my Canon 17-40mm lens to my Canon 24-105mm lens – I needed the longer focal length as I wanted to zoom in as much as I could, but keep all of the cap in focus.
It took a lot of fiddling around to get everything set up, and then I took the first set of photos.
I imported this first set of images into Lightroom, and noticed straight away that the brightness varied considerably. I took the first set using AV Mode on my Canon 6D.
And I also needed to adjust the view to be a bit higher for the effect I was after.
I went back to do the same thing with my camera in manual mode, and metered for an average brightness cap.
One problem was getting all the caps into exactly the same place – to do this I made a sort of frame that I could push the caps back into using Blu Tac.
This was a bit hit and miss, but I persisted.
I made another set of images, and imported these into Lightroom.
They weren’t all aligned properly, so I had to do a third take.
This time I had an idea. The way the caps appeared in the viewfinder of my Canon 6D I could locate each cap using the focus points – this worked a treat.
That was the composition of the 10 images sorted, so I took those photos and then played around with stacks and combinations.
Place corner cap within the tent.
Move the cap so the four corners of the caps coincided with four of the 11 focus points of my Canon 6D.
Tilt my camera forward using the geared mechanism on my tripod so the front corner was in the main focussing point.
Focus on this point using back button focus
Tilt the camera back up to the original position
Take the photo using the self-timer.
Change caps and repeat
The exposure was already set in manual mode so I did not have to worry about that.
I took another five images, making 15 in total. Some of these additional images were taken with my camera lower down, at the same level as the products themselves.
Once I had got everything sorted these are the settings I went with.
Back button focus
Lighting via the tent
I used the Canon 24-105mm lens – this worked a treat and is my favourite lens.
F16 is the smallest aperture I am happy to use for this kind of photography – it gives me the largest depth of field without any of the problems F22 can bring.
Using AV Mode was a mistake. That is what I use all the time, but taking the test shots and reviewing them on my screen told me that and meant I could fix the issue.
I tried using Blu Tack to make a former to place the caps in, but the Blu Tac did not stick properly. I found a way round this – sometimes it is all about trying things and seeing what works.
This was one of those happy coincidences – the four corners lined up perfectly with four of the 11 focussing points on my Canon 6D.
I used my architectural photography tripod and head, as I get precise movements with the geared head, which I find essential for such close-up detail work.
Sounds obvious but easy to forget – one light source is all you want and indeed need for work like this.
I started off importing the photos into Lightroom, using my usual import pre-sets
I needed to get accurate colours. The colours were obviously key to this.
This could be simple or complicated – time will tell.
I used the Passport Colour Checker for this. The first photo I took was the colour checker placed exactly where I was going to take the photos.
Now granted I haven’t installed the software to do this properly. Instead I tried using custom white balance in Lightroom. If that worked I could park the software installation to another time.
I know - I need to do this.
So all I did was select the eyedropper tool from the white balance bit of the Basic panel in Lightroom, and clicked on one of the grey squares. The numbers were all the same, so I was good to go.
I know I need to install the software, this is a job for over the Christmas Holidays I think.
Having got the white balance bang on, I copied this from the colour checker photo and pasted it to all the other photos.
Next thing was to sort out the image, which was a bit flat.
These are the develop settings that I used.
Once I had one image sorted I pasted the settings to all the other photos – an excellent feature of Lightroom.
I had to tweak the brightness of some of the images, and also the whites and blacks, but that was processing done.
There was some stuff that needed to be tidied up, which was straightforward to do in Photoshop. The corners of the tent which were visible, and some large dust sensor spots. All removed using spot healing, clone stamp and patch tools.
And there were numerous marks and scratches on the caps themselves.
I tried doing colour swapping using Photoshop but this did not work too well. I could not replicate the textures of the caps by changing the colours.
That was an hour of fiddling about taking photos of the coloured caps and Photoshop.
We agreed that this did not work so it was on to plan B.
3 hours start to finish.
That includes setting up, unwrapping all the corner caps, taking the photos, importing them into Lightroom on my PC, editing and dispatch via electronic transfer.
3 hours start to finish is not too bad.
That to be fair is three constant non-stop hours working.
Which was four chargeable hours in total.
And here is a selection of the images that I took.
First the bright green cap
Next the red cap
And here is one of the shots of all the coloured caps
And I have to say that I love the finished photos – I think they look excellent. So good they look like someone else took them.
Seriously, when I looked at these photos my first thought was – did I really take them? They look like a real photographer took them!
Seriously that is what I thought.
I no longer think like this about photos of buildings or of my travel photography work, I have got over that.
But it did take a long old time.
No these photos are not something I normally photograph. And I have never taken photos in a tent like this one, with built-in LED lights.
So there was a steep learning curve.
Well sort of.
I have technical image capture sorted, so this was all about applying what I know in a different situation, photographing a different thing.
The basic principles of image capture and processing are the same for most situations, they just need tweaking to the particular thing you are photographing.
I seriously love these images – they are of coloured corner caps for a table. But I genuinely love these images.
And I enjoyed taking photographs of something different. It was good to challenge myself photographing something completely different.
I do not use flash, or any other artificial lighting. The extent of my use of lighting is to turn the lights on in a room to make it feel more homely.
So using these lights was a complete revelation for me, and has inspired me to do more with lights in 2019.
I have proved here that you do not have to spend a lot of money to be able to do work such as product photography in your home.
I have of course completely ignored the fact that I am using circa £3000 worth of gear that I already own, and focussing on the £10 bit of kit from Amazon.
This is though a fair assumption – anyone taking photos for money must have a base level of kit that can deliver professional results.
The point of this post was about that £10 tent which I bought from Amazon, which did an excellent job, and is there for the next time.
And the other point I would like to reiterate here is that it is good to try new things out. I spend my life photographing buildings and nice places, and this is the work that I market.
This does not however exclude me from other genres of photography – there are basic competencies that can be applied across most genres of photography.
Photography is all about problem solving. Some of the things we have to do just have to be worked out, and experience helps here enormously.
It is nice to take some different photos, and also nice to write abut such a positive and pleasurable experience.
Product photography is a photographic specialism. But there is one significant difference about product photography that has just come to me.
Buy a folding tent like the one I bought. And guess what - you can practice at home to your hearts content using whatever you want to photograph.
Now this makes this kind of product photography unique – the only cost is getting really good at this discipline is £10 for the tent – the rest is just time investment to provide another string to your photographic bow.
I wish I was there. And not sat on the A31 in the dark waiting.
This Barbados beach sunset photo was taken with my iPhone and processed using Lightroom Mobile would you believe.
I just thought I would share this on a dark Friday afternoon here in England to cheer us all up!
I forgot - flickr was bought by Smugmug.
And I had forgotten I had an account with flickr to be honest!
A few weeks ago I wrote about my old faithful Canon 6D, and asked if I was ready to replace it, and if so what with? I spent lots of time talking about the Canon 6D in that article.
And I got to thinking about things that I would like in a new camera. My Canon 6D is a few years old now, and whilst it performs fantastically well as my working camera a lot has changed since it was released. So - how to choose your next camera? To answer this, I have listed down 31 features that I want in a new camera. This is the nice to haves and the esssentials which I have listed as the start of the process to choose my next camera. I am going to refine this list down to the essential items that I need, which will determine what my next camera should be.
A new camera is a significant purchase in many ways, so time spent identifying the features required will ensure that the correct choice of new camera is made.
By the way these are all features that will help me to take better photos, which is my number one priority.
This list started off when I was writing a previous blog post about my Canon 6D, and brought together thoughts I have been having for some time. The starting point really was what would I do if I broke my Canon 6D – this is an entirely likely scenario as I am
Intrinsically clumsy, and
Take photos on live construction sites
Like putting my camera very close to the bit of land where the waves and land meet.
Take my camera with me absolutely everywhere
Seriously I am really clumsy
What has made me think about changing my camera?
So once that thought process had been initiated, the cogs started whirring slowly.
The 3 primary reasons/ concerns/ potential issues
1 – My dodgy old mince pies (like the rather too early Yuletide reference?)
My eyesight is getting worse as I get older. Well we are all getting older of course but I have a bit of a head start when it comes to age – I am already 51.
It is my eyes that are the issue. I have been short sighted for donkeys’ years now. But in the last 5 years my near vision has got worse and worse.
Add short-sighted to losing your near vision and it is a royal pain in the X! Try seeing all those small lights and dials on a camera, and then switch your vision to distance – not easy.
2 – A different way of working
Yes – I am working in a different way now. My Canon 6D is still doing an excellent job with my architectural photography work, but there are other things that I am doing now, travel photography and vlogging. My Canon 6D is not fitting the bill as well for these areas of my work.
3 – I just want something shiny and new
Shock confession. I want a new camera. There – I have said it now. I think that this has become one of those self-fulfilling prophecies. I started writing about not replacing my Canon 6D and find myself here writing this post with much too much enthusiasm!
To be fair to me my cameras tend to last me five years so I am due for something that will take me into the year 2024 – imagine what technology will be doing for us by then!!
These 31 things are in no particular order, and are a list of the things that came to me when I sat down to capture the headings for this article. 31 just happens to be the number of things I came up with – there is no significance to this number!!
I found myself using my iPhone more and more on holiday. I basically couldn’t be bothered getting my Canon 6D out all the time, and really enjoyed the ease of using an iPhone.
I know – its not Canons fault I’m lazy!
I used my Canon 6D for sunrise shots, where it was just me and the sunrise, no on else around and just me to think about. I used my Canon 6D on my travel tripod, the Manfrotto 190 Go.
I would really like something much smaller and lighter that I can take on trips and not be burdened with.
My 6D is not that big to be fair – it is just the collection of stuff together that bugs me. And I know there is smaller stuff out there.
Talking of tripods I also use a Platypod and a very small tripod called the Manfrotto Pixi. If I had a much smaller camera, I would have more options in terms of tripods and other supports which is rather exciting.
I am going to refer to my Canon 6D as my camera from now on. OK?
My camera has built-in HDR, but this is only to Jpeg files. I shoot in RAW only, so this feature is of no use to me.
Or is it?
Is there a different way of looking at this? Has the technology of cameras, sensors, image capture and image processing progressed to the point where there is no real difference between Jpeg and RAW?
Is there a camera that makes this differentiation irrelevant?
And is there a camera that makes HDR irrelevant as well?
Well it’s a thought.
Can a single image capture be enough?
Or a single image capture processed using something like Aurora HDR.
GPS is a must for not only my travel photography, but also my commercial photography and the stuff I do on the way to and from shoots.
I have GPS on my Canon 6D which I always use, which I find incredibly useful.
I use the Map Module in Lightroom a lot, especially when I am writing about my photographs on my various websites, blog and also on the Improve Photography website.
GPS is pretty much an essential tool for me.
I use Wi-Fi to remotely control my camera using the Canon Connect App. I have used this to activate my camera from the top of my painters’ pole in a couple of situations.
This photo was taken in a pretty harsh environment, a gravel loading facility next to a live rail siding. I had to photograph the gravel being unloaded by the 360 machine from the train into the gravel bays.
And when these guys are unloading from a train on a live rail network they get on with it!
The other example is where I want to take a photograph of a building from higher than ground level, like the photo above. Getting to first floor level, which is only circa 3m gives a completely different perspective, and also means that my camera is at first floor level, eliminating the need to correct verticals.
In the year 2018 why do cameras not have the same functionality and connectivity that we all enjoy with our phones?
My Canon 6D is an older camera now granted but cameras in general seem to lack way behind phones.
Why can’t I take a photo and share it with a client immediately? I can with my phone.
Same point relay but rather than connectivity functionality.
improving that in a clever way could negate the need for the two points above.
What do I mean by this? I guess I am talking about Jpeg image capture with more processing, meaning I can use images straight from camera (with the connectivity mentioned above).
I put my camera on a painters’ pole. I also put my camera on the ground, on a Platypod or Manfrotto Pixi tripod. I hold my camera out of windows.
I hold my camera out in front of me to get over things.
For all of these situations a fully articulating screen would be a huge bonus to me – this would genuinely help me taking photos.
I am getting old. I am (rather tragically) over 50. And my eyes are not what they were.
The screens on my Canon 6D are an issue. The tiny numbers in the viewfinder are also an issue to me.
I have been getting away with these shortcomings mainly by the way I take my photos. I pre-set most of my camera settings so most of the time all I am changing is the aperture and the point of focus.
When I want to deviate from that in any way the problems begin.
And I have noticed recently that all things that I do with my Canon 6D are becoming more difficult. Not just my Canon 6D of course – all things that I do that involve close focus.
And the distance stuff isn’t that great either.
Oh the woes of getting old…….
A large bright screen will help I have no doubt. Going from my iPhone 7 Plus to my Canon 6D screen is like going from my iPhone back to one of the old Nokia phones with the little screen – remember them??
This ties in with points raised before, putting all these bits together to get something approaching iPhone touch screen functionality.
The thought of a touch screen that is as user friendly as that on an iPhone or iPad is rather exciting to me.
My Canon 6D works for me ergonomically. I have handled some smaller cameras and am not sure how they handle ergonomically – that is a very good reason for going to an actual camera shop and actually holding an actual camera rather then reading reviews online.
The internet will never replace a shop for the experience of actually holding something and getting that tactile experience – that is one reason why it is so important that we all go to shops and buy things, or there will be no shops and nowhere that you can go to hold an actual camera.
Not a lot more to say really – I have heard that other camera manufacturers systems are not as good as Canons, which I am used to. And to be honest I change so little, maybe because there is so little to change, that this is not currently an issue.
This may be an issue if I had a camera with more variables to play with. One to think about,
I currently do 99% of videos with my iPhone. Now I do have a DJI Osmo Mobile that I need to make better use of but I would like to do more 4K video with an actual camera – my Canon 6D does not do 4K video of course.
My videos are not the best, but on the plus side check out this lovely 6 minutes of sunrise tranqulity on the wonderful Greek Island of Paxos.
I am finding the need to produce more videos, some for my own promotional purposes, some for clients I am working for. At the moment all I am doing is holding my iPhone up in front of me and talking into it using the built-in mic. Whilst the picture quality is adequate the sound is not good enough.
This ties in with my desire to have smaller camera gear especially for travel photography. I have found in recent trips that I have been using my iPhone more and more for day to day shooting, using my Canon 6D for sunrises and stuff like that.
Whilst the iPhone has a remarkably capable camera it just does not compare with my Canon 6D and Canon L lenses, and nor should it to be fair.
I love the sensor on my Canon 6D, and love the images it captures. This is a 20 MP sensor, and I will not accept a lesser performing sensor.
Another intangible here is how the sensor on another camera will perform, and what will the look be of the images?
My Canon 6D has excellent low light performance. Well I think it does. Again performance needs to be better than that I currently enjoy.
I want some toys and things that I can play with and have some fun! And I want to be able to use the latest technological developments in my photography. I know it is all about the composition but I have worked hard on that over the last year, and will continue to do so going forwards.
I just want some fun when I am taking my photos and some new things to try out.
I hate removing sensor dust spots. Hate it.
So a sensor that doesn’t need cleaning will be good. Not an essential but a nice to have.
I do not know if this is even a thing – one of the problems with mirrorless cameras is that the sensor is closer to the bit where you mount the lens as there is no mirror there. On an SLR there is a mirror in-between the rear lens mount and the sensor which must provide some protection.
Now this is an essential. I want to be able to change lenses, I want to be able to expand the range of lenses that I have in the future as and when needed.
And I want the lenses to be of a similar quality to my current Canon L series lenses.
I have a tilt-shift lens that I rarely use. The truth is I do not like it. It is manual focus, and I have managed for so long without it that I am in two minds whether to get rid of it or not.
I have been planning on using my tilt-shift lens for a prolonged period of time but have never got around to this.
I think that this may be because don’t really want to – I feel like I am forcing myself (potentially) to use a piece of kit just because others say I should.
It is unlike me to do such a thing so lets just park this and say that it will never happen.
That’s tilt shift lenses done then!
This might be an issue with crop factors. At the moment I have a Canon 17-40mm lens on my full frame Canon 6D. If anything I want the ability to go wider than 17mm if at all possible, but without the size and expense of the canon 11-24mm lens – an awesome lens for sure but not what I am looking for at the moment.
This could be a deal breaker for me.
I have never got on with the custom functions on my Canon 6D. I think this is my own fault, a definite display of petulance and a lack of time studying this feature.
But to be able to have pre-sets that I can switch to automatically to mix things up is very appealing to me.
I shoot in RAW, process in RAW and output in Jpeg. But with the new technologies out there is this still a thing? Or has the in-camera elastic trickery made this a thing of the past?
I have tried various EVFs in shops, and also at Gatwick Airports’ Dixons World Duty Free. The main thing that I do with my airport downtime is look at cameras and marvel at EVFs.
I love the way that you get live exposure simulation in the EVF – such an awesome thing to be able to see.
The EVF however needs to provide the same optical experience as the viewfinder on my Canon 6D though – field of view here is a consideration together with brightness and realism.
And the size of the stuff in the EVF.
I know very little about this, but the advances in technology must be being included in image capture?
I am sure that with the power of processing things like sensor size, mega pixels, noise and stuff like that the gap between high end and lower end cameras is closing.
My Canon 6D is pretty good at this. I have written about this on my blog and also on the Improve Photography website.
And to be honest people have been surprised that I find the Canon 6Ds low light focussing capabilities.
I am sure that newer cameras will have better low light focussing capabilities than my Canon 6D so I expect to see benefit in this area with a new camera.
I need a weather-sealed camera. All my photography is done outdoors. And I don’t stop for the rain.
And I work on live construction site which are wet, dusty inhospitable and noisy places. Not that noise is relevant here.
Straight from the camera onto the internet. This is a new business need which I will expand on in the summary.
If I could take a photograph with image processing pre-sets that I knew would give me the initial level of processing that I wanted that would be a start. There is of course the question of the metadata, filename, title and description. But I guess they could be added after the event?
I need to be able to add high quality metadata to my images – this is something I am quite fastidious about.
It is the ability to be able to get processed images out of the camera and onto my websites that I am keen to have.
I have often written that there is too much talk about gear, which I still maintain is true. But this does not mean that I do not want some shiny new techie loveliness now!
And when I get a camera I do tend to use it for a number of years.
What if I jump ship to another manufacturer and don’t like it? If I were to get a Canon EOS R, which is a strong contender, I would be staying in the Canon ecosystem. I would know what I was getting, but with lots and lots of bells and whistles in addition.
But what if I went elsewhere and just did not like it – that does worry me.
I need to provide a bullet point list of essentials – I will do this and post it next week, along with any feedback from this post and the one that I published on Improve Photography titled.
Or do I have two camera systems?
I might have missed a trick here. My Canon 6D works just fine, and still captures great images. What if I got something super small for travel?
Maybe I need two shortlists – one for a replacement to my Canon 6D (and all the other related products) and one for an addition to my Canon 6D.
I think that I have just cracked this particular conundrum – to systems.
Keeping my Canon 6D for my architectural work opens up more possibilities for my other work.
There is a serious point to this. I have embarked on some new products, one of which I have recently completed.
I have written about this before on my photography blog, but it is wholly relevant here.
I am talking about my new photography website Photos of Santorini. And more significantly the websites I have planned for the future. I want to be able to work in a different way for the next websites I am producing, including having the ability to add photos direct to website pages to speed up production of these websites.
I want to publish images straight from the camera with no further processing required.
This will also allow me to produce new websites whilst out on location which will be massive for me.
If I can add the images I can add the text using my iPad to a prepared website – now that would be really cool and transform the way I work.
So there is a serious point to this.
That and the fact that my eyes are getting old and less useful!
OK I’m done now
I hope that you have enjoyed reading this post, and please if you are able to point me in the right direction for my next camera please do so.
I was checking my Analytics too often. It was distracting me, and was basically a complete waste of my time! So I did the only thing and deleted the Google Analytics App from my phone, leaving it on my iPad only.
Why did I do this?
Simple - I was obsessed with checking the number of visitors to my website. I was checking much too often.
If I want to check any of these stats now I have to use my iPad. I have left these excellent Apps on my iPad. The logic is that to check my stats I have to use my iPad, which is much less available to me than my phone.
And this worked for a time.
But, disappointingly, I found a way round this. Web based Google Analytics. Yes I managed to get this page on my iPhone, and all I need to do is refresh the page and there are the stats I want.
I have removed that page now to stop this. I do not need to check analaytics as often as I do. I know that.
To further compound the problem I now have three websites, this one which you are on now, and my new websites.
is now pretty much complete
which I am back working on.
All the more reason to check my analytics? Yes, but I will endeavour to not do.
I am sat here editing my photos of Santorini. Nearly done which is good. I have been going into Photoshop to remove primarily sensor dust spots, but also stuff creeping into the edge of a shot, and also stuff I want removing.
Take this photo of Fira for example - there are all sorts of bits that need consigning to the shadows as they don’t add to the image - they just distract.
I do this work in Photoshop and then save the image back into Lightroom.
I then have to go back to the Spot Removal Tool in Lightroom to check to see if there are any bits left that I have not done - there is an excellent feature called Visualise Spos bottom left after you select the (much improved) Spot Removal Tool.
This is the spots that required removal after the work I have done in Photoshop - quite surprising!
The small circle are spots that I have removed.
And while I am on the subject why cannot I not use the Page Down key to navigate through an image like I can in Lightroom?
There are some execllent features in Lightroom thaht would make Photoshop so much easier to use.
There are many websites which have lots of great photos taken on the wonderful Greek Island of Santorini.
But what is the best website for photos of Santorini? Well my brand new website Photos of Santorini of course! This is certainly the best website called with this name, and cunningly my website has that as it’s URL.
I know – a grand statement but let’s be honest – if I don’t blow my own trumpet who will? And in time the search term “best website for photos of Santorini” will hopefully bring people right here to this post, which will take visitors over to my brand new website. This is all part of a plan!
This is my first bespoke travel photography website. I went to Santorini last April on a photography trip. And when I came back I went through my photos and had over 100 images that I would display on my website and feel comfortable selling commercially.
That was quite a remarkable return for a 5 day photography trip, so good was the location. That and the fact that I had five solid days taking photos.
My problem was this - what do I do with the photos?
This has been troubling me for some time now. I have all these photos, but what do I do with them? I seem to have taken lots of photos but never cracked what I do with them.
I have a few images on Adobe Stock, and had sold quite a few of these images. The problem is that the most I have got for an image is 25p. Yes 25p.
And I have not sold enough images to get to a big enough earning amount to actually get paid by Adobe.
The same happened with Shutterstock, with the same paltry financial return.
I therefore decided some time ago that stock photography is just not for me – there must be a better way.
I am not selling my work for a pittance.
I spent some time thinking about this, processing my chosen images and posting them on social media – I even had a Santorini Photos page on my website.
But none of this did anything – these things were not the answer.
I am not sure to be honest. I listen to various podcasts on photography, solo businesses, passive income and internet marketing. And cricket and football – I am not that sad thankfully.
And the one idea that kept coming back to me was a standalone website for my Santorini photos.
I had a lightbulb moment, and decided to go for it.
First thing was to buy a website domain. I settled on photosofsantorini.com, which I bought and registered and bought hosting for all for less that £50.
Buying the website was the kickstart I needed – I had something to work with.
The original plan was 50 photos on 50 blog posts with some supporting pages, but this got reduced in the end to 20 blog posts and 1 very long post.
And that very long post is the one that hit the internet this afternoon. This website blog post is titled Santorini photography tips – this is what I have learned.
This is pretty much a summary of my experiences of going on a photography trip to Santorini, my version of events from start to finish. As I said this is a long post, and is designed to be a standalone post that will help anyone who is thinking of going on a photography trip anywhere in a foreign location, but especially of course to Santorini.
And having read this post and found it useful, hopefully people will check out the other pages on my website, and come back here to my main photography website.
There are 20 images on 20 blog posts where I tell the story about each image.
The headings I have used are as follows
Why do I like this photo so much? I start off describing why I like the particular photo on that post
How did I decide on this composition? This to me is one of the most important questions. I try to describe what I was thinking when I was coming up with the composition.
Where was the photo taken? Using the Maps Module in Lightroom I am able to show exactly where each photo was taken.
What time of day was the photo taken? Just the time the photo was taken. And some other relevant nonsense.
What photography gear did I use to get the shot? A list of the gear I used.
What camera settings did I use? Having listed the gear, I thought it only fair to share the camera settings used to get each image capture.
One interesting fact about the image. I have tried to come up with something interesting for each image, something that you would not know just by looking a the image.
Is there a behind the scenes video of this shoot? Not for every shot, which is a great shame. But there are some behind the scenes videos and some photos taken on my iPhone.
How did I process the image? This is a quick description of how I processed the image in Lightroom and Photoshop. I also share the settings in Lightroom by adding a screenshot from the Develop Module.
What could I have done to improve the image? Very important to me is to critique all my own work to see if there are things that I need to correct, and learn what I could have done better. It is good to look back on images after the event.
And what are my thoughts on this image? A general summary – does the image convey what I wanted it to convey? Is the photo a representation of that place and that time?
Enough of me - what do you think of this image? This is an interesting one – I have opened up this question to all visitors to my website – I can’t wait to see what people think of my photos of Santorini.
Do I mind sharing this info for free? Of course not – I hope that people find this helpful
I wanted a structure within which to write each web page, trying to cover all the angles that would be of interest to photographers. I wanted a consistency across the pages too.
And let me tell you a secret – it is much easier to write stuff if you have a framework within which to write – 10 headings with circa 200 words per heading is a lot easier to write that 2000 words.
I also have some static pages on this website.
About me. A bit about me. Well why not? This is my own website after all.
Blog. This is where the pages I have described above are. Those and some other pages I wrote when I first created this website.
Contact. How to get in touch with me – very important for every web page to have this info.
Do you want to buy one of my photos of Santorini? It took a while for me to realise the place to sell my photos is on my own website. And you can’t buy them anywhere else.
Home page. Every website needs a home page and this my home page. Hmmm that’s clear now!
My images of Santorini here in my big Greek photo gallery. This is all those images that I spoke about earlier. I have spent over a year looking for somewhere to put these photos, and on a single gallery page on my own website was just the place. There are just over 50 photos at the moment. I will add to this when I have finished editing all the photos I want to put on this website. This should be completed this week.
My photography gear. A list of all my photography gear, along with a photo of the gear that I took to Santorini.
Now all I have left to do is the boring stuff
Check the metadata.
Check the spelling.
Check the image metadata.
Add links where I want them.
Add my photo to each page (at the bottom). Just done that.
And internal links to other pages.
And finally index all the pages on Google.
I should have said that this website has been created using the Wordpress platform. I bought the domain using GoDaddy, and I am using Bluehost for the hosting.
All the photos are of course my own, and all the text has been written by me.
So this is quite literally all my own work, which makes me feel almost proud.
And at the time of writing I have not decided on the theme for the website - I have just gone with a free theme for now from which is called Pixgraphy - I have not got around to customising this yet.
This is all new to me of course.
I aimed for a minimum of 1200 words. 1200 words is probably the shortest I want blog posts to be to get good rankings in Google. This is a bit of an experiment, which hopefully being so niche will produce the results I want.
The summary post is massive, and is based around the keyword that kept popping up when I was doing my research – Santorini photography tips.
I want this page to rank number one on Google for the search term Santorini Photography Tips – lets see what happens – this post went live today (at 3.20pm) so this is an exciting thing for me to monitor.
This website is all about the photos and the content. Photos of Santorini is a very specific niche subject.
Santorini and my photos taken there.
That is what it is all about and nothing else.
This website is not a Travel Guide to Santorini – and I not pretending that it is at all.
Santorini and photography - this is all this website is all about.
For a very specific reason.
This is what I want to write about – these are my two favourite things to do – travel and photography. And my photos are unique to me – no one else has taken the photos I have taken in exactly the same way I did at exactly the same time.
And my words about my photography are also unique to me.
And that is the point – I have created a website which has to be unique as it is all my own work and I have never done this before.
Wait. Wait for 4-6 months and see what happens. See if this is the beginning of my passive income, which will change my business model going forward.
If this is successful I will be looking to create more websites following this model.
And there is another website that I am going to work on next. This is my other travel photography website “Paxos Travel Guide”, which should be completed by the end of December 2018.
This website is a bit more involved, and has a different structure and to be honest will take loads longer to create.
There are lots more pages, lots more content, and there is another big difference with this website. I went to Paxos knowing that I would be creating this website, so have taken lots more photos, behind the scenes stuff and also a daily journal.
This website will have probably double the amount of content that photos of Santorini has.
And once this is done I hope to know if this website is a success before I start on my next website which will be about the wonderful Greek Island of Rhodes.
This is part of the reason why I had to get my Photos of Santorini website out of the way – this is a smaller and every more niche website than Paxos Travel Guide. And I couldn’t concentrate on the other website until I had finished my work on my Santorini photos website.
Now that this website is done I am very very happy.
Let’s hope that this website is a success, and that I can make a different kind of living with my travel photography. That is my plan.
I am looking forward to sitting back now all the hard work is done and seeing how this website performs.
There are over 30,000 words and lots of images spread across the pages of this website – I will write a review in the New Year about progress and Google results.
And what next? I need to get back to Paxos Travel Guide – two months of work with the completion of photos of Santorini done and there to inspire me.
The Canon 6D was released in 2012. I bought mine in 2014. When it was released it was a great camera. When I bought my Canon 6D it was a great camera.
So at the back end of 2018 is the Canon 6D still a good camera? Yes of course it is. In fact no it is not still a good camera – it is still a great camera. My Canon 6D took great photos in 2013, and took great photos last week.
Despite all the technological advances that can be found in shiny new cameras the Canon 6D is still a great camera. And just because other cameras have advanced significantly since 2012 this does not automatically make the Canon 6D over the hill, past it’s sell by date, irrelevant or obsolete.
And to broaden this out further
In my opinion this applies to many cameras released in the last, well I don’t know, 15 years?
My first full frame camera was a Canon 5D Mk 1. This camera was first released in 2005 would you believe! And I still have this camera, which I am very fond of.
This is an image that I took with my Canon 5D which can be found in my current architectural photography portfolio.
Ok – before I justify my statement about the Canon 6D still being a great camera in 2018 I need to say something else.
Photography is not about gear. Photography is about recording the light. Composition and creativity.
All this technical stuff is really irrelevant.
No one cares which camera you or I have used to capture an image. No one cares about the camera settings, if it was taken in RAW or JPEG?
No one apart from other photographers that is.
All people care about is the photo itself. That is all. Let us not forget that.
I know. I complain too much about gear talk. But here I am not talking about new gear. I am talking about gear that I already have, and have learned to use inside out.
And when I say talk I do mean write of course – it is just that I type as I would talk, as things come into/ out of my head.
Lets start at the beginning. What do I like so much about my Canon 6D?
Day in, day out. And having used it for so long I know how it works inside out. I can operate my camera in the dark with no problems. I can change lenses in the dark. Once I have found them that is!
Ok – so now for some specific features, in no particular order.
I know that this is by no means a unique feature on the Canon 6D, but I still love this feature, and the way the Canon 6D does it.
Why do I use back button focus?
Simple. I compose my image, and then decide where I want to focus. Then I choose an appropriate aperture. And then I press the shutter button, which meters for the scene and starts the self-timer.
I have separated focus from exposure and image capture. I take the vast majority of my photos on a tripod.
This just works for me.
These to me are one and the same. I love the images that my Canon 6D produces. I love the look and feel that the RAW files give.
I like the details that the sensor captures.
I like the tones.
I like the range of shadows and highlights, lights and darks. And with the way I take the photos I like the way I can take bracketed sets and put the bits together in Lightroom.
Note the Canon 6D has 11 focus points. The Canon EOS R has 5655 focus points. You might want to read that again.
The CANON EOS R HAS 5655 FOCUS POINTS.
THE CANON 6D HAS 11 FOCUS POINTS
I have found 11 focus points just fine. To be honest I tend to only need to use one at a time. So what would I do with the other 5654 focus points on the Canon EOS R? I’m not quite sure (but I am looking forward to finding out!).
The way I take my photos I focus on one part of the composition, typically around 1/3rd into the scene.
And another thing about the focussing on the Canon 6D – it can focus in ridiculously low light. I don’t know how it compares to other more technologically advanced cameras, but it does focus down to ridiculously levels of light, or darkness
Do I need to be able to focus in near darkness?
I take a lot of photos pre-sunrise and post-sunset but rarely have a problem with focussing.
I compose with Live View and focus without Live view – this woks just fine for me.
The Canon 6D fits in my hands and the controls are all in very familiar and to me logical positions. I have never wished that things weren’t where they are. Not that the camera is perfect, it is just that we have grown close to each other over the years!
It’s a bit like having a favourite pair of shoes, they mould to you over time and end up being irreplaceable.
I know – I am getting worryingly sentimental here. Having said that we have been through a lot together.
I use the Wi-Fi to take photos in unusual locations and from unusual viewpoints. This is an essential part of my work.
OK the Canon Connect App is hardly cutting edge, but most of the time it works fine and allows me to do what I need to do.
I have not used the Wi-Fi to view photos remotely – the way I work I only want to look at photos on my big calibrated monitor in my office. This is changing though, and I find that more and more I would benefit from instant access to viewing photos on my iPad Pro.
This is something that I need to look into with my Canon 6D and Canon Connect App – that and transferring Jpeg files for instant publication and sharing.
Another invaluable feature. I do a lot of travel photography – much more than I ever did, and also have other websites about specific travel photography locations.
I need GPS, and the Canon 6D has it. I use the Map module in Lightroom a lot, which enables me to erm, tell where I took photos from.
I also have been known to stop and take photos when travelling – anytime I see something I like I stop and take a photo, and the GPS tells me where I took the shot.
So an invaluable feature that I would not be without.
And I use it on my various websites and for writing articles about my photography work.
It’s not all sweetness and light - there are things that are not perfect! What do I not like about the Canon 6D?
I am 51 years old. I am struggling with the viewfinder I’m not going to lie to you. I have a dominant eye. And a lazy one on the other side of my head. And I am short sighted. And my near vision is much worse than it was.
I never know which eye to use when composing through the viewfinder.
The future of viewfinders – the EVF
I have recently been trying out EVFs on the cameras in display in shops and at airports.
An EVF is an electronic viewfinder by the way.
That is how I spend my time waiting for flights – trying out EVFs and wishing I had one! And then realising even in holiday mode the airport is not the place to buy a camera. I nearly cracked once and would have made an expensive mistake but thankfully I saw sense.
Now when I find one that is actually working I find these to be a bit of a revelation. I tried an Olympus EVF the other day that was absolutely remarkable.
This might be the thing that takes me down the road to mirrorless cameras – my age, my short sightedness and the blurry distance vision I can get from time to time.
Yep getting old has its drawbacks, my eyes being a pretty big one.
Getting back to the point - pleaese forgive my digressions!
I struggle to focus close then distance. My contact lenses correct for my short sight, which I have had since he age of about 13, and now also give me assistance with close vision.
These contact lenses need light to work properly, so at times using the Canon 6D is a struggle. Sometimes I cant read the LCD panel on the top, even with the (faint) light turned on.
So it might be ageing that forces me to buy a new camera - I really hadn’t thought about that until writing this!
The GPS. If I do not manually turn off the GPS when I turn off the camera it is still running and drains the battery. Completely infuriating and there is apparently no fix for this. I actually asked Canon people at the Photography Show.
I hope that the Canon 6D Mk 2 and other newer models have had this problem sorted as it drives me up the wall. And for no reason that I can think of.
The LCD screen is quite frankly rubbish. Rubbish when compared to my iPhone 7 Plus screen that is. Having said that I can’t see my iPhone screen in full Greek sunlight anyway!
But no the screen is much too small. To get round this I have had to buy a Loupe Viewer – this is what it looks like.
I had to stick a small plastic window on the LCD screen, onto which I can attach the viewer quickly whenever needed.
I use the LCD screen to compose images all the time, which would be very difficult, even impossible in some lighting situations with just the small LCD screen on the Canon 6D.
And add the problems with my ageing eyes and you will see that the screen is a serious issue to me.
So much so now that I have written about it that I might have to consider replacing my Canon 6D to get over my ageing eyes!
I don’t get them sorry Canon. It seems such a convoluted way to customise my camera that I have never really used it. Sure I have set it up but find it so un-user friendly. Maybe I should give some more time to this feature and see if I get can get my head around it properly.
I did try it but when I saved the settings I was no longer shooting in AV Mode, which confused me so I gave up.
There is in-camera HDR merge feature on the Canon 6D, but rather bafflingly this only works with JPEG files?
Why can’t any camera, and not only the Canon 6D just do the HDR thing automatically in-camera? With RAW files that is. It is only a case of taking three exposures and merging them together. Why do I have to do this in Lightroom?
And why doesn’t the in-camera HDR work on RAW images?
If the Canon 6D did in-camera HDR with RAW files I would only ever need the RAW HDR file which would save me so much time.
Shutter actuations are the key thing here. The shutter after all is the major moving part and rather critical to the workings of the camera.
The Canon 6D shutter has a shutter rating of 100,000 actuations. How many shutter actuations have I made with my Canon 6D?
I could get some software that will give me a number but it is unlikely to be accurate.
No I will go with the number of images in my Lightroom Catalogue. Of course that will not include images that have been deleted, but I don’t think that this will be significant knowing the way I work and how few images I delete once they are in Lightroom.
This will give me a good enough idea.
22,422 is the number from Lightroom. Not too bad and not a concern. Not as much as the state of my eyesight that is!
Lets not forget 100,000 is a number to provide an indication of the working life. To me this number is only of use when I am comparing one camera to another – the number gives me an idea of the relative robustness of two cameras.
A much more relevant factor is how many times I have dropped my camera, how many times I have got it wet.
Basically how badly have I treated it?
Well there was the big drop in the National Trust office at Corfe Castle – this resulted in an expensive repair.
And lots of small drops. Mostly onto rocks at sunrise.
Splashes by the sea.
Letting the camera roll down in rock into a shallow puddle.
Being rained on.
A quick spray of Mythos (the Greek beer for those who don’t know!)
General wear and tear
My camera has been with me every day everywhere I go. Every day I put it in the boot of my car, and every night I take it out again. It has been crammed into tight spaces on planes, buses, trains and boats of various types.
The working life of my Canon 6D is from now until is stops working!
Enough waffle – what about some photos taken with my Canon 6D?
I just have four lenses these days.
Canon 24-105mm F4 L
Canon 17-40mm F4L
Canon 70-200mm F4 L IS
Canon 24mm Tilt shift lens
These are all I need to be honest. I use the 24-105 for travel photography, and the 17-40 for most of my architectural work.
12-300mm is the range that I would like to cover, ideally with 2 or 3 small lenses.
What would it take for me to change to another camera?
I would like something smaller and lighter.
That would mean the Canon EOS R and one of the new, smaller lenses. Yes I find that quite exciting.
I am on the press waiting list for a body and lens to review on the Improve Photography website.
Will getting my hands on a Canon EOS R change my views on newer gear?
I don’t know. There is the stubborn grumpy old get taking pride and satisfaction from using an old camera to take photos. But there is also the bloke who has shiny new thing syndrome.
I think once I get my hands on the new Canon EOS R I will want one.
Yes. And no. I have used Canon cameras for years and years now. The only other manufacturer I have used is Fujifilm – my first “proper” camera was a Fujifilm (film) SLR.
I don’t want to go to a new manufacturer, but would necessarily not rule it out. I have an open mind on other camera systems. I like the look of Olympus and Fujifilm’s current offerings – this is based on a pretty superficial look at them in camera shops and some stuff I have heard – nothing too scientific or exacting.
No. Why ever would I do that? Why do people do that?
Yes of course I do, and after all that talk about how much I hate gear and the time spent talking about gear I would love to have a new camera.
I love new tech gear. I am very excited to get a new iPhone when my contract allows (January 2019).
And every time I use my Apple Airpods they make me smile.
But I must not forget this
I still enjoy using my Canon 6D, even after all these years.
But yes I do browse new kit at airports and in camera shops and do have those background gear lust feelings.
So what about all the gear talk?
It just feels that there is too much talk about gear and not enough talk about photography.
Photography hasn’t really changed – photography is after all making photos.
Lets not forget that – photography gear is just that – gear. Tools of the trade. The equipment we use to capture what we see in front of us.
I will have additional features that will give me better opportunities to capture better image but no, fundamentally no.
No it won’t. What would I do now if I broke or it just expired?
There are things that I would need to have in a camera to convince me to change from my good old Canon 6D.
The Mk 2 version has some very cool features. It is a general evolution of the 6D Mk 1 into a generally more advanced camera.
As well as all that the 6D Mk 1 has there are also some cool new features.
An articulated screen. And a touchscreen at that!
More resolution (but not too much) – 26 Megapixels
A (slightly) better sensor that the 6D Mk 1
But to be honest these things did not excite me enough to make me upgrade. My 6D Mk 1 is still working just fine thanks.
But the Canon 6D Mk 2 is a great camera. And there would be no problem with all my lenses and other bits of kit. And there is the familiarity of sticking with Canon.
I am digressing now
This is drifting into 20 features I want in a new camera. I might as well make that next weeks post! I just need a snappy Google friendly title and I am good to go.
Tell you what – head back to my photography blog next week where you can read the next post in my series, which will be called something like
20 features I need in a new camera to replace my Canon 6D (by the time I had completed this post I was quickly up to 25 things!)
Blimey. I can go on sometimes. Still it is good to get these things out of my head and out into the wonderful world of the World Wide Web.
You may have noticed that on more than one occasion I have used the terms “it works for me”. Well that pretty well sums it up.
The Canon 6D works for me.
I hope that you have found the new format of my photography blog, with less frequent but much longer and more in-depth posts useful and more interesting.
Next week I will expand on the things I want in a new camera should I need to get something to replace my Canon 6D.
I have changed from daily blog posts to weekly blog posts. Last week I concluded that the best time to post was on Mondays at 4pm BST. That is that sorted.
The next important question therefore is this – what should I write about in my photography blog? Photography stuff. Is my photography blog the best photography blog out there? I wish. But it’s not too bad, even if I do say so myself!
In my photography blog I will be writing about not only architectural photography but also general photography stuff, my images and photography business matters.
So what I hear you say??
This is a significant change for me.
And that does not necessarily mean that I will not produce blog posts at other times – now that I have a structure, plan and intent for my blog I feel freer to produce other stuff as and when I want which is nice, without the pressure of forcing myself to produce daily content just for the sake of it.
To be completely honest the purpose of my blog is to get more people to visit my website.
That is the bottom line.
Weekly blog posts are new weekly content which Google loves. And the higher the quality of the content the better.
And the more relevant the content is to my website the better too, which is another reason why I have narrowed down my target markets – the focus has benefitted me in various ways.
And to do this I am going to share information that others find useful. If people find my posts useful then more people will visit my blog and I will rank higher in Google for the things that I wrote about.
And if I rank higher in Google more people will find my blog.
And if more people find my blog more people will become aware of me and hopefully enquire about my photography services, photography knowledge, or just look at my photos!
And you never know people might want to actually buy my work.
That is my understanding of how this should work – there you go – if I am right I have virtually handed you and everyone else the keys to the internet!
In all seriousness that is the general principle – give people helpful information and Google will thank you for it as that is Googles’ number 1 role.
Google exists to give you the best answer to the search query you enter in that box on Google.
If my blog content can contribute to this then great.
All I need to do now is to consistently produce content that people find interesting and helpful and worthy of sharing. If I can do that Google will know. Google knows what is going on on the internet.
Which I’m sure you are aware of.
Simple – I want subjects that are relevant to my target audience. I want subjects that are relevant to my photography business.
And most importantly for me I want to write about things that I have a genuine interest in. I am a strong believer that we all do a better job of something if it is something that we enjoy and have an interest in.
After all I am building a business based around what was once just a hobby. It doesn’t feel like work sometimes which is great, even though I work very hard developing the various strands of my photography business.
So I enjoy the subjects I am wrting about. And I enjoy writing. This is not quite a labour of love but it is much less of a chore than it would be if these weren’t things that I enjoyed.
My target audience is quite varied, but has been narrowed down from everyone everywhere. That is who I was writing to up until a couple of weeks ago when I stopped and thought about what I was doing.
Architects, developers and product manufacturers wanting photos of their buildings, developments and products.
People interested in the general subject of photography, taking photos, processing in Lightroom.
Buyers of my photos.
Manufacturers and suppliers of photography equipment.
Whilst this section of my target audience is very important to me, I will not be writing to or for them. That will take my writing from being natural and about the subject in hand and drive it down a business marketing route that I don’t want to go down.
I am not writing so Canon UK contact me and ask me to review their latest and greatest. I am writing about subjects, and if that is my Canon 6D then so be it, but the subject is my Canon 6D and not hey Canon look at me!!!
This is an important consideration.
Sure there will be lot of references to products, and Amazon affiliate links, but the content will be genuine content.
There are plenty of people out there who do this kind of stuff, but I am going down a different path of my own choosing.
I have split my target audience down to the following four headings, which has helped me define the titles and content of each of my weekly blog posts.
My core business is photographing buildings, and mainly for architects, developers, property owners and manufacturers of construction products. That being the case I want to make sure that I am writing about how I can help these good folks to get the photos they want. This is by a combination of words and case studies of commercial photographic work that I have already done.
This is a tricky area, the global photography one. I am a writer on Improve Photography, and want to continue sharing my general photography knowledge and experiences on my own website.
I will write about image capture, processing, gear, tips and techniques, photography news, anything really of a general interest to the photography community.
The tricky thing is that this is a pretty competitive area, so I will have to be clever in how I produce this content.
This is the place to showcase my photography work.
At the time of writing I have only one portfolio on my website, which consists of 20 architectural photography images.
I am going to add two more portfolios, one for travel photography, and one for landscape photography.
And I might bring back my product page. The problem is how do I sell images if no-one can see them? And I just got rid of a load of pages having taken very good advice.
My photos are unique, and my USP (unique selling point). No-one else has the photos that I have taken. My images, my vision and my style are me – they are what I an trying to sell to clients.
And they are the products that I have to work with, to trade and to sell.
Clients look at my images and know what they are going to get which is very important.
In posting my images I will be writing lots about the images
How I got the shots
Behind the scenes photos and videos
What I was thinking
The technical side of the image capture
Processing in Lightroom and Photoshop
What I did with the images
That sort of thing
I want people to buy my photos
This is an area which I find interesting, and I have experiences which I can share which will help people.
As well as my photography business I am also developing some new websites which fit into the travel industry, and also travel photography. I am combining my loves of travel, photography and writing to produce bespoke niche websties.
And I have learnt a lot along the way.
And there are business and cmemrcial opportunuites that I have not yet explored that I want to look into which I can research and write about on my photography blog.
Or should I say photography business blog – hang on – is that a thing?
Four subjects = 1 subject per week – how convenient
Yes I deliberately came up with four areas, as I wanted four different but ultimately related things per month to write about.
I will worry about that when it happens.
Well that is anther question – I think that the posts will vary in length from 1500 – 4000words. These are relatively long posts but I have learned from more than one authoritative source that the most popular blog posts have a length of circa 1900 to 2000 words. So 1500 words will be my minimum.
Another reason why these structured posts will be weekly – they take time after all!
I am not going to think about this too much – the length of the post will be determined by what I want to write, rather than writing to a predetermined number of words.
This is me writing about a subject, not writing 2000 words to gain traffic.
And I will write about new things that I need to know but do not know
This is a new thing to me that I have just started doing on the Improve Photography website. I have picked a topic (we writers have an article title hit list) and then learnt about it enough that I can write about it.
And I have to say I quite enjoyed it, and it has opened up a world of new subjects for me to write about.
Basically, if I don’t know anything about a subject then that is fair game for a blog post. And believe me there is lots that I do not know.
My blog is my personality in words. I write as I speak. My blog is an online mechanism where people can get to know me by reading about me, and reading about my photography.
This is the thing that will run through every blog post, long or short, serious or not so serious – my personality and sense of humour.
If you don’t like the way I write there is a chance that you will not like me in person. Conversely if you love the way I write when you meet me you will feel like you already know me.
And trust me I am a nice chap honest.
When I say websites they are pretty much wbsites with blog posts.
I am currently working on a new website called Photos of Santorini. And once that is done I need to get on with my other website, Paxos Travel Guide. These need time and once done they are standalone completed pieces of work – and this is the time when I will review not only the content of my blog but also the frequency and timing.
I expect that will be in the New Year – Photos of Santorini will complete October 2018, Paxos Travel Guide by the end of December 2018.
I will be producing a weekly post on my photography blog. I will produce other posts as and when, but these will be the main posts.
I will write in-depth posts about each of these four subjects providing a useful resource and information to clients and general readers, as well as showcasing the best of my photography work.
I will also be writing as though I am speaking, so when you read what I write it is like speaking to me.