02 Jan 2007 Assignment #6 – Silence (Podcast 69)
A Happy New Year to each and every one of you. This week is going to be a quick episode, as I’m trying to catch up on the post processing of a four day trip to Hokkaido shooting the red-crowned Japanese cranes during a Christmas to New Year holiday. I’m first going announce the winners of the Sound Assignment, and then say a few words about the theme for the next assignment, which is going to be Silence.
So, as usual, in reverse order, here are the winners of the Sound Assignment. First, in third place, is BKSecret, who is Landon Michaelson from Washington in the US, with his beautiful photograph, “Listening”. If you are going to punch in the numbers at the top page at martinbaileyphotography.com, you’ll need to add an m for member, then the number. This first one is m3628. I see one of Landon’s little boys looking very pensive peering at the illuminated screen of an iPod, with earphones in. I think he’s listening to the Martin Bailey Photography Podcast, because he looks very engrossed in the contents of the screen. The nice tight crop and total darkness all around, enhanced by the fact that the image has been converted to black and white makes for an incredibly good image. The shallow depth of field also throwing everything but a small part of the subjects face out of focus, adds to the overall aesthetic. Wonder image as usual Landon. Thanks for taking part.
In second place is username hsisson, which is Holly Sisson, with another black and white image, number m3581. Once again, a member’s son helps out, this time by playing the trumpet. This is more of a direct approach to Sound, as we can almost hear that horn blowing as Holly’s son puffs up his cheeks to play the instrument. This image is also very artistically done, with the subject off-centre, and tightly cropped, and once again with a nice shallow depth of field to allow us to concentrate on the subjects face and here also a cool denim jacket. The slight frown on the boy’s face allows us to see just a little bit of straining in blowing the instrument which also helps us to imagine the type of sound that we might be able to hear if sound was included in the image. Another very cool and well executed image. Thanks for taking part Holly.
So finally, the winner of the fifth Assignment on Sound is Keith Guthrie from London in the UK. Keith’s image, number m3621, is once again very artistically done. This is of a 10 pence coin spinning on a granite surface, shot with a strobe flash. The coin edge can be seen stopped in four position by the strobe, giving rise to a very real sound of the coin spinning on a hard surface. Almost another black and white image, but naturally so this time. There is a slight bronze colour in the coin, but very subdued. The texture of the granite and again the shallow depth of field help keep us firmly focussed on the coin. Very well conceived and executed image. Well done indeed Keith! I’ll be contacting you straight after this to get the details of the original print you’ll be claiming from my gallery as your prize. Thanks of course to all of you that entered. Once again the standard was incredibly high.
So, in contrast to the last assignment on Sound, which I think was really quite tough, I’ve decided to make the next assignment a little easier, but only a little. As I mentioned earlier, the next assignment, starting today is on “Silence”. I’m thinking of images that make us think of total Silence. No sound at all. This is very open to interpretation, but I’m sure you’ll have some great ideas. Please note that the image you submit has to have been shot after this point in time, which is the 2nd of January, 2007. Please don’t just search through your archives for something fitting, as the idea is to get us out shooting with a purpose. You will be able to upload your entry until midnight on Sunday the 18th of February, just about anywhere in the world. On February the 19th voting will start for two weeks until the end of March 4th.
Start Wrap-up: So, apologies for the brief episode today. As I said, I’ve been off to Hokkaido, the island at the very top, the north of Japan that I seem to be visiting at least a couple of times a year. Last year I was there in February, June and December. I visited this time exclusively to shoot the Red-Crowned Cranes in the town of Tsurui, which actually translates at cranes are here. I shot some 4,500 images in 3 and a bit days of shooting. I also hired a Canon 1Ds Mark II for the trip, as I don’t have a second body right now, and thought it would be a good chance to find out how this pro body fares in comparison to the 5D. I had a great time shooting the cranes and using the 1Ds Mark II. I whittled the 4,500 down to just over 400 images in my first pass, and I’ve currently took a break during my second cull to create this weeks’ episode. If I can get through the rest and complete my post processing and uploads to the Web site, I’ll probably discuss my experiences over the next few weeks while showing you some real-world examples as usual.
Once again, I hope this is a great Year for all of you listening. Have fun with the Assignment, and with everything you do. Bye bye.
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Posted on behalf of Martin by Michael Rammell, a Wedding Photographer based in Berkshire, England. Michael also has a long-standing passion for Nature & Landscape photography. To catch up with Michael, visit his Web site, and follow him on the following social networking services.