Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Was Thomas Wedgwood the father of photography?

The son of successful 18th century wealthy entrepreneur and potter Josiah Wedgwood, Thomas certainly had the financial backing to develop early photographic ideas.

Even if he is not credited with inventing photography he certainly was an arbiter of its future.

How amazing it would be to find a photograph earlier than 1826, earlier than 1800!


Thomas's experiments with a camera obscure and light sensitive materials in 1791 demonstrate that the knowledge was available in the 1790s to alter the state of silver nitrate on glass using sunlight.  There does not appear to be a known way of fixing the metamorphosed chemicals into a permanent image until a further 30 years later in the 1820s with Niépce).




Are Websites Still Important For Businesses?

Yes, websites are still important for businesses.  They are only part of your marketing plan and will provide you with part of your trade.  You still need to tell people about your business and point them in the direction of your website as they will not always find it directly.

Building relationships is as important to the success of a business as they previously were, but how we network and make connections has changed a little in the preceding decade.  With 'social media' become ever more popular we are becoming a little more indolent in regard to building connections in tangible world. 

Most businesses grow because other people talk to other people about them.  It is not because artisan's or small businesses are good at what they do, although that does help and can give you the edge over competition, it is due to them liking you.  They like you because you spend time with them and make them feel valuable. Think about the words used when someone recommends a business to you.  Sometimes they say it is because they are cheap, other times because they flexible or even they available. But when they say "they are brilliant, really nice people and really care about what they do....." you are impressed and trust the endorsement.  

When a small business is sold based on the personality of the person and the good points are about them the new customer wants to buy in to this.  It is taken as a given that the business can actually perform the task well.  Contrast this to being sold on  the basis of just your work, or even worse your low cost the reaction is often different.  

Your website is important and should reflect you, your personality, your culture and finally your products.  Learn to sell you, make yourself of value to your clients and they will then recommend to you to new clients.

What's the aim of your website?
Websites give customers information.
Customers can clearly see what you are about.
Current and future clients can view your work.
It is an effective and efficient marketing tool.
Cheaper than flyers, adverts and have more coverage.
Gives customers confidence, and you some credibility.
The images you choose help sell you and your approach.
The information is available to customers all day everyday.
Add videos to your blog posts to show customers how you work.
You can update your images more regularly and be more seasonal.
A site will allow them to form an opinion of you and your style.

Useful Links for Small Businesses - setting up and operating. 
"If you are a small business owner, then you have one main goal to accomplish in the near future. If you aren't online with a website yet, then that is your new goal to accomplish as of right now. You might ask why being online is so important, so here are some of the best reasons why small businesses and large businesses alike benefit so much from being online......"

'Why Websites Are Important For Businesses'


Start Your Own Business

How to photograph a wedding

The Differences Between Professional and Amateur Photographers

Friday, 24 May 2013

Photography Studio Hire

If you have attended a photography courses with MelenCourses or you would like to hire equipment and studio space please contact us about availability.

Studio Hire Charges

Studio Booking only no equipment
Studio, grounds (small orchard/copse), kitchen and WiFi
£ 20 per hour
£ 50 half day
£ 90 full day
plus VAT

Studio Booking only with equipment

Studio, grounds (small orchard/copse), kitchen and WiFi.  Equipment - Elinchrom Heads, Softboxes, Stands, Backgrounds, & Reflectors.

£ 35 per hour

£100 half day
£180 full day
plus VAT

Discount for multiple bookings please ask.

Client Meeting £10 £30 £50
Desk Space     £10 £30 £50
plus VAT

Paper Roll usage £ 8 per metre used
Studio Assistant £20
All plus VAT

YellowMelen, MelenStudios , 
01582 840172http://www.melenstudios.co.uk

Great Barn, Whitehouse Farm, Gaddesden Row, Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, HP2 6HG

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

When Wedding Photography Goes Wrong the Groom Gets Violent

Help? I shot my first wedding and I'm being threatened?

David Ross , Jun 13, 2012; 01:56 a.m.
Hello everyone. I need your advice and help. I shot my very first wedding and I made a ton of mistakes. I had "friends" who wanted to use me and I said I had never shot a wedding before. What I guaranteed were 10 fully edited (LR, Photoshop) photos an hour. I would not give them poor quality photos and they agreed to my conditions. I charged them $1200 total. Being that I did not have a DSLR, I spent the money renting a Nikon D800, SB900, and lenses. I wanted to create a contract but they did not want a contract. They would only pay cash. This should have been a red flag for me and I should've backed out. I did receive all of my money but here is what happened. Instead of 10 fully edited photos per hour, I was surprised that I was able to get 20 fully edited photos per hour. Other than this there are a lot of junk photos. Just 6 weeks after the wedding, the groom tonight threatened me. He is demanding every single shot that I took. I do not want to give him the poor quality photos. What should I do. Yes, I know I blew it on many levels but what do I do now. What do the pros agree to when shooting weddings? Do you provide the bride and groom with every single photograph that you shot. I was told not to do this as these photos could come back to haunt me.


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Denis Germain , Jun 13, 2012; 02:08 a.m.
because people own a DSLR...they claim to be Pros.
even worst... you rented one! and charged more money that the "mom with a DSLR wedding"....
Good Luck !
David Ross , Jun 13, 2012; 02:10 a.m.
I never claimed to be a pro. They knew very well my position. I was up front with everything.
Zane Johnson , Jun 13, 2012; 02:19 a.m.
He's threatening you in what way, exactly?
Michael Chang , Jun 13, 2012; 02:35 a.m.
David, you weren't clear about whether you've delivered the photos yet.
I think you have fulfilled your contractual obligations if you have delivered the 10 (or more) fully edited photos per hour. I don't think the groom is entitled to alter the terms of your agreement after the fact.

Monday, 13 May 2013

Panasonic GX1 and Photo Styles

Recently I have thought about taking photographs as RAW and JPEG, partly to save time on unnecessary post production but also because sometimes i like the look straight from camera.

In Regents Park last Thursday I decided to test out some options on my Panasonic GX1 using the Photo Styles with my own adjustments and those from Creative Control.

Having not to deal with too much post work does help you concentrate on the photography.  One you open a RAW file in Aperture or Photoshop you just can't help but fiddle and adjust something.

By photographing with your own Photo Styles it feels more like photography used to be for me. May be it is slightly pompous, and it is, but going back to photographing this way is a little liberating.  With my Canon i can upload my own Picture Styles and that is something I will look to do.  If the photographs are good why do we need to tamper with them in post?  The client gets them quicker and we have less work to do.  Everyone wins.

There are still the RAW files if i need them, or if I want to spend time in post i can happily play with one or two images.  

The colourful floral pictures below in Regent's Park are straight out of the GX1, the camera adjustments are written below each image.

They were all taken with an Olympus 45mm ƒ1.8, much prefer this to the expensive Leica 45mm macro.

Settings ƒ2.0 1/500 at 160 ISO and Cloudy white balance for those that care about such things.

Regent's Park Flowers Phil Richardson
Regent's Park Flowers STD
Regent's Park Flowers Phil Richardson
Regent's Park Flowers STD +2 Saturation
Regent's Park Flowers Phil Richardson
Regent's Park Flowers Natural -2 Saturation and + 2 Contrast
Regent's Park Flowers Phil Richardson
Regent's Park Flowers STD +2 Saturation and -2 Contrast
Regent's Park Flowers Phil Richardson
Regent's Park Flowers Vivid +2 Contrast and + 2 Saturation
Regent's Park Flowers Phil Richardson
Regent's Park Flowers Retro
Regent's Park Flowers Phil Richardson
Regent's Park Flowers Monochromatic STD
Regent's Park Waterfall Phil Richardson
Regent's Park Waterfall Retro
Regent's Park Waterfall Phil Richardson
Regent's Park Waterfall Miniature Effect

Regent's Park Waterfall Phil Richardson
Regent's Park Waterfall Miniature Effect

Thursday, 2 May 2013

Italian Landscape Photography Courses - Paolo De Faveri

If you would like to attend a landscape training course in Italy, why contact Paolo De Faveri.

He is an excellent photographer and a great fella.

Paolo De Faveri Photography - Italian and European Landscape Photography
skype id: paolo.de.faveri
pdf1968@yahoo.it - paolo@paolodefaveri.com