Cheeky Monkey

Recently I visited Lepakshi, just North of Bangalore. The light was mid-dayish, and not fantastic for the temple’s magnificent architecture. There was a group of very photogenic women singing their hearts out by the entrance of the temple, unfortunately they were camera shy. However, third time lucky! Monkeys surrounded the grounds and were very tame (to the point of pinching people’s bags and snacks). This monkey posed just long enough a portrait.

For those of you who are interested in such things… This image was edited in Lightroom, and flipped left to right so the monkey was looking to the right. I then colour graded it using On1 and added a film filter. The eyes were lightened and sharpened. Lastly, I added a slight vignette.

Now my regular Street Photography Group on Mewe will only accept images that feature a human element, and this does not count. However, these delightful creatures are soooo close to human I may get away with it!

Take care and keep clicking, Chris

If you are interested in joining the Street Photography Community (SPC) please use the link below.

http:// www.mewe.com/join/street_photographers

The Instagram Debate…

Should I say or should I go?

I keep toying with this article, and I am not quite sure if it is completely finished or not. The internet is littered with pro and negative articles on Instagram at the moment. Anyway, here are a few of my thoughts. The images I have added are completely unrelated and come from a recent shoot in Phuket. Enjoy, feel free to comment…

A heated discussion?

Instagram is being re-branded and will now be known as ‘Instagram from Facebook’. As Instagram is already owned by Facebook, I see little changing with the platform. By now, most photographers will have realised that the stakes have changed when making a post, and the visibility of each image is determined by an ever-changing algorithm. Chasing likes, fake profiles and influencers are all bringing the topic of Instagram to the boiling point. The question is, should you remain with IG, or look for something new?

Bar Stool with a View

It is all about the adverts.

Silicon Valley is portrayed as an industry run by geeks in jeans, who want to make the world a better place. In reality, the internet is run by large corporations with the mindset of a tobacco merchant. The internet can be harmful and addictive, affecting sleep, relationships and self-perception. However, it is a great tool for advertising. The longer you are on Instagram, the more money the corporation makes. It is clearly in Instagram’s interest to increase its addictive qualities.

Your Time = Their Profits!

The Pros and Cons

I arrived late to Instagram, and my following is embarrassingly small. It takes a lot of effort to keep up with trending hashtags and to maintain a fresh and innovative feed. With the use of hashtags, groups such as National Geographic pick the best images to ‘feature’, if your photo is chosen by one of the popular pages, you can expect thousands of likes. Yet most of the time, it is these popular feeds you will be competing with. How do your photos stack up against a collection of images curated daily by a professional editor?

While It is hard to stand out on Instagram, it is high-quality feeds that make the platform worth viewing. As photographers, we can improve our own work, by viewing the best photos captured by other people. At the moment, Instagram remains one of the best places to do this.

Not everyone likes Instagram, but we all love Street Food

A Solution?

There is a way fight against the addictive qualities of Instagram. I have recently deleted a host of social media applications from my phone. This has restricted the time I can spend on each platform, as I can only log on when I am at home on my desktop.

5am/ Patong

Secondly, I try to curate my feed. There is an incentive to follow thousands of people, in the hope that some of these will follow you back. However, it is impossible to actively engage with such a large community, and with a busy feed you often miss seeing the photos you are interested in. A well-curated feed consistently provides high-quality images, and takes a short amount of time to review. A smaller feed also provides greater opportunities for meaningful interaction, which is something that the algorithm (apparently) favours.

Conclusion…

Instagram has its faults, but it is still the premier tool for connecting photographers. I am a remainer (but only just).

Take Care and Keep Clicking, Chris

10 Travel Photography Annoyances

Stunning locations, exotic food and beautiful people. What is there not to like about Travel Photography? Here are ten annoying things that face travel photographers. As always, please don’t take it too seriously! The photos accompanying this article come from a recent evenings photo shoot in Patong, Thailand.

Beer O’Clock
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Sony A7iii Banding Issue

I have just completed a shoot where I was using the Sony A7iii in silent shutter mode (electronic shutter). Obviously, my choice to use this mode was to decrease my presence and create a little discretion. I was shooting at night, and the area was lit with multiple florescent and neon lights. This appears to be a sensor issue.

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Pictures of Pattaya

Pattaya is a paradise for Street Photography. Be prepared for a vampirish existence as this city comes awake at night. My favourite time of ‘day’ is between 2 – 5am. In the early morning hours clubs wind down and people spill out onto the streets, mingling with Buddhist Monks, hawkers, street food carts and cleaners mopping up the night’s mess. The photo below is my favourite image of the shoot, as it captures the spirit of what I was looking for.

Click here for the full set of images

Buddist and a Ladyboy
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Children’s Stories Exhibition

An exhibition in Moscow is currently featuring two of my Street Photographs. The body of work being displayed focuses on the theme of, ‘children’. This exhibition has been curated by the Moscow Encyclopaedia Foundation and the Regional Public Organization of Assistance cultural and historical heritage of Moscow “Moscow and Muscovites.”

Quite a mouthful!

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Photos with Friends!

A Morning Shoot with Angelo Gifford

Borough Market

A short post today as I am now on holiday, currently located in Devizes, near Bath. If you are near the area and fancy a shoot let me know. Last week I arrived in London and had a chance to take a photography walk with my friend Angelo Gifford, who is a co-owner of Mewe’s Street Photography Community (SPC). Angelo often captures photos of the street just South of the Thames, and is an expert on the how light bounces around the area and the locations that can be found.

Slow Shutter Speed

Seeing with New Eyes

If there has to be a point to this blog, then it would be to encourage more people to explore an area with someone else. We each only have one pair of eyes, and can get into habits which crush creativity. It is also nice to have someone to talk to. Lastly, if you are in a new area, it is certain that a local photographer will have some insider information on the location, including the interesting spots and how light works at different times of the day.

Where Next?

Next month I will be heading to Glasgow, on some unrelated-to-photography engagements. However, I would love to meet up with someone for a shoot if you can get to the town centre. Towards the end of the month I will be in Thailand, shooting street with a distinctly ‘beach’ theme. Locations will include Phuket and Pattaya.

That is all for today folks, so find a friend and keep clicking!

Chris

MEWE – why not join the SPC Mewe Community? Come on in, you are all invited (and the water is warm).

www.mewe.com/join/street_photographers

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