Go faster! Go faster!

A young girl in a buggy leans forward as her mother pushes her along St. Patrick’s Street, Cork. Looks like her mother was busy shopping in Penney’s and elsewhere so I’m sure she’ll look forward to getting home!

I like this: This Flight Tonight, and make sure you download the linked video tutorial. The statement that an “adjustment layer is a normal layer with a layer map on top” struck a chord with me. The GIMP doesn’t support adjustment layers and the technique he used, by rubbing out some of the map of an upper layer is one I’ve used in the GIMP previously.

Rusted and abandoned

An old oil drum stands on the quay at Ballycotton rusting away as the exposed metal is beaten down by the elements.

Technique: I increased the saturation of the reds to bring out the rust of the drum. I desaturated other colours so the drum would stand out.
I then duplicated the layer and darkened the top one to bring out the clouds and sky before using a layer mask to expose the ground on the bottom layer. After that a simple gradient at the top of the image provided a nice dark effect and finally, I dodge and burned the rust until I was happy. Was that useful?

I used CocoViewX to view my work directory from my Linux box on my Macbook. I was surprised that Finder didn’t display thumbnails and I didn’t want the iPhoto heavyweight when all I wanted was to know which image was which.

A visit to Pineapple Studios

I visited Pineapple Studios last night with Mallow Camera Club. Jessica Jones and Tina showed us around and it was an eye opener for me. Jessica is rightly proud of the lighting in her studio and went over each system answering questions as she went. A shooting session followed and I was roped in to model for a couple of shoots but unsurprisingly the guys seemed more interested in shots of Jessica and Tina!

Tina then showed us their lab and went through the process of working a photo in Photoshop. They have two large printers and plenty of facilities for printing all sorts of size images. Tina printed off an 8×10 and 8×12 explaining that they calibrate their printers several times a day to cope with changes in temperature as the day gets warmer from morning to evening.

The visit was great fun and very interesting. If, like me, you’re not very familiar with portrait photography, you’ll be shocked at how complicated it is and all the skills the photographer has to call on. As Jessica said, “if you don’t like people then don’t photograph them.” A huge part of the job is getting people relaxed and forgetting that it’s a photoshoot. She spends an hour making a portrait so the customer relaxes and the shot looks natural. She took a group portrait of us and hopefully she’ll send the image on to me soon. I asked everyone if they minded having their photo on the web and thankfully nobody dissented. I’ll update this post with the photo when I get it!

Thanks Jessica and Tina for showing us around!

Jessica has already sent me on the photo. Thanks, nice job!

Mallow Camera Club

The lone daisy

A solitary daisy grows in front of a small house in Fountainstown.

This was an interesting photo for me to take. I spotted the daisy while walking out the road but I didn’t stop to shoot it until returning. I’m glad I remembered it! I’m really happy with the way this came out.

Naturafit at the Cork Modern Homes Exhibition

A young visitor to the Modern Homes Exhibition in City Hall Cork flings himself enthusiastically on the very comfortable Naturafit bed covers while Naturafit representative Kurt Gamper looks on in amusement.

We bought one of those bed covers a few months back and it’s great. It helps keep the bed warm and it’s very comfortable. My wife Jacinta bought one of their pillows and she swears by it.

Disclaimer: Other than being satisfied customers we don’t have any connection with the company.

If you visit the exhibition this weekend make sure you buy some chocolate from the Fosters Chocolate stand by the entrance. It’s delicious!

There are hot spas on display too, but if you’re thinking of buying, please read about Carl Fogarty’s experiences. It might make you think twice!

Shel Israel and Rick Segal in Cork

Shel Israel and Rick Segal joined members of the Cork blogging and business communities for dinner in Taste of Thailand last night.

They spent the day talking to business people so I’m sure the dinner was a welcome end to the day. Pat ordered one of the banquet selections and we tucked into what I think was four courses of delicious food. I wish I knew that much food was coming out because I could barely eat my breakfast this morning I was so stuffed!

Dinner was excellent of course, and I can heartily recommend Taste of Thailand if you’re looking for a nice meal in Cork.

Tom has posted a picture and some words about the dinner last night too and reminded me that Pat should be thanked for organising it. Thanks!

Will has a write up on the night too. I must take a look at that MusicIP app Rick was going on about. He said it works in Linux too so it could be a useful experiment. I wonder what it’ll make of my varied collection of music?

Steps down to the river

Steps lead down to the River Lee in Cork City. Railing stops people going down them but in times past fishermen and other boat users hauled goods up these steps onto the quays.

This was taken a few yards up the quay from a previous shot.

Technique: To increase the dynamic range of this photo I made copies of the original layer. The bottom of the photo was quite dark and that had to be brightened and the sky was too bright so darkening that helped significantly. I used layer masks to isolate my changes to those areas of the photo that needed it.

The new Digital Journalist is out!

I like this: Ramadan in Beaumont. Love the second image here.