Above are a few shots from a commercial photography shoot for Wilson Security as part of their servicing of the Fremantle Port Authority. It was a great opportunity to get an inside look at the areas of Fremantle Harbour that i'd never been to before including some behind the scenes baggage and personnel screening processes.
These shots were taken on the 5D MK II and processed with Adobe Photoshop. I've been using Googles Nik Color Efex Pro software / Tonal Contrast filter to help process the final shots. I've found using this filter is a great way to enhance the tonal range and sharpness of shadow detail to really get images that provide exceptional level of detail. My preference is to keep the highlight and midtone contrast quite low and pump up the shadow contrast to a around 35 - 40. This creates images that are still realistic but contain a broad dynamic range with great colour saturation and are sharpened effectively.
Saturday the 17th July saw the league leaders (West Perth Falcons) visit the port city to take on finals bound South Fremantle Bulldogs in a game that would prove to be the match of the round.
West Perth jumped straight out of the blocks with a fast start and held a 40 point lead at half time. The comfortable lead would be short lived after the main break with the Bulldogs storming back into contention with the midfield engine of Kris Miller, Toby Bairstow, Ashton Hams providing much of the grunt work while Callum Wilson was sensational with 8 of his 9 goals in the second half.
In the end the steady hands and AFL experience of a heavily topped up Falcons team proved too much as they held out for a 135 - 118 victory. Andrew Strijk led a balanced scoring attack with four goals.
West Perth return to the comfortable surrounds of Arena Joondalup for an important home fixture vs the much improved Perth Demons while South Fremantle get a chance to regroup ahead of the final stretch of the season with a bye.
You can view the full photography gallery here
Round 13 of the WAFL saw the East Fremantle Sharks take on the Perth demons who after a stretch of great form came into the game with considerable confidence. The game was an arm wrestle throughout the match with neither side being able to gain ascendancy until the fourth quarter when the East Fremantle Sharks turned a 3 point defecit into a 6 goal to 2 final quarter to run away with the game finishing 85-68.
Reece Palmer did his chances of being recalled to the Fremantle Doclers no harm with a tireless display through four quarters gathering 34 touches while former West Coast Eagle & Western Bulldog Andew McDougall impressed for the visitors.
Sports photography in varying lighting conditions can be difficult. At East Fremantle Oval the best place to photograph from is near the large Grand-Stand as the sun is always behind you ensuring you don't get any lens flare and players faces are in sun not shadow when running towards the camera. However this same grandstand starts to cause a large shadow over the field in the third and fourth quarters. This means that my daylight light balance needs to change to cloudy white balance to account for the change in light temperature. I prefer to do this manually rather than set to AUTO as i keep more control over the colour tones of the final image.
In a perfect world lighting conditions for sports photography would be for a "bright" overcast day. A thin layer of evenly dispersed cloud ensures that you won't have to worry about harsh shadows in faces or bodies and enable consistent shutterspeed and exposure values. My preference is for over exposing by 1/3 of a stop to get detail in the shadow parts of the image then bring back the highlights from my RAW (.CR2) file in Photoshop CS5. If lighting conditions are consistant through the game i can then batch process the images to quickly apply pre-set RAW profiles and watermark's to all images.
Another Monday, Foundation day public holiday another classic Fremantle WAFL Derby. After taking the honours on their home ground, the South Fremantle Bulldogs came in wanting to make it two in a row over their arch rivals.
Meanwhile the East Fremantle Sharks, winners of 5 straight games including upset wins over the undefeated West Perth Falcons were confident of continuing their strong vein of form.
The game ended up being a classic arm wrestle with the visitors over running the Sharks in the last quarter to win: 88 - 71. Theo Adams was dominant throughout the game to finish with 32 touches while Ryan Cook worked tirelessly for his 30 touches.
For the East Fremantle Sharks, Rory O'Brien and Koby Stevens were impressive in the middle with 32 and 31 touches respectively. In the end the Sharks needed more help on the scoreboard with Brock O'Brien kicking 7 of the Sharks 11 goals.
Next week sees the Sharks given a solid opportunity to rebound with another home match against the much improved Perth Demons while the Bulldogs also have a home fixture over the struggling Swan Districts.
You can view the full gallery of the Foundation Day Derby here.
Recently i got down to photograph the South Fremantle Power Station. Wow - What a sensory overload. Wall to wall graffiti, every square inch of the ground covered in broken glass, spray cans everywhere...It was amazing.
I cant wait to go back. I was so in awe of the place, i found myself just watching and exploring rather than just taking photographs. I desperately need to go back soon and shoot the Heritage listed building again and focus on sections that i missed or take from another angle.
It wasn't until it was almost dark that my photography partner Leo and I discovered the staircase that took us to the upstairs section that opened up another range of stunning photo oportunites.
The photographs above have been processed using HDR (High Dynamic Range) overlaying three different exposures of the one setting to bring out such vibrant colours, intensity and contrast. After the RAW files have been HDR processed using photoshop CS5 the resulting 32bit images were then processed a second time using the Photomatix plugin filter which amplified the HDR result even more.
The final stage was to convert the image to 16bit and then use the dodge and burn tool to create focus points in each of the images.
I think this building would be very intimidating and powerful in Black & White as well. I need another trip down ASAP to re-shoot. For a personal project this has been really rewarding and challenging shoot. I still think I'm yet to get the best out of the building as far as graffiti and architectural photography goes. As its really is one of the best places to photograph in Perth or even Western Australia.
This trip has tripped a switch within me and I'm keen to explore some of the other unused heritage listed building througho
Fremantle and the Easter long weekend have become synonymous with the Fremantle Street Arts Festival and each year seems to get better and better. Since its foundation in 1998 it has become one of the best events on the arts calendar in Perth, Western Australia each year.
This year was perhaps the best yet with an array of street and performance artists from within Australia and overseas. The quality of the performances these artists put out over the long weekend is nothing short of staggering. Most seem to make "Busking" their full time jobs/careers and put in amazing shows that have the crowds in awe.
Parts of Fremantle are blocked off to traffic (Including South Terrace) - The famous cappuccino strip becomes flooded with people and acts staggered throughout the four day festival. For myself some of the highlights this year included the USA Breakdancers from the Bronx, New York City who not only put on a dazzling acrobatic break dance performance, but also had the crowd in stitches with their unique brand of comedy and crowd participation.
Darien Le Page - Is an Australian Mime Artist who is simply incredible. He has an incredible ability to "converse" with his audience and his style of humor is a hit with the younger generation.
I also managed to catch the "Badpiper" and his energetic performance. I have never seen anything like him before and it was impressive to see his unique fusion and interpretation of popular rock songs through a set of bagpipes.
Finally thanks should go out to the City of Fremantle for another world class festival. Bring on the Fremantle Street Art 2012.
RAW - Is an informative blog website run by Perth based professional photographer Tristan Judd. A couple of weeks ago Tristan put the word out of an exciting competition based around the name of his website "RAW". The concept was staggeringly simple. The execution of the task...challenging.
Simply supply an out of camera image and the same image after post processing...simple right? To make the challenge all the more enticing there are some awesome camera bags up for grabs from Thinktank Photo. Check out Tristans review here.
So after deliberating for far too long what do i enter, how much post processing should i do. I ended up with the image above. I wanted to take something new for the photography competition as i get bored of my photos very quickly, and i believe my best photo will be my next one.
It was Good Friday when i went for my first visit to the derelict and abandoned Power Station for the first time. Such an incredible building to photograph in terms of its heritage listed architecture and then the abundance of graffiti throughout. The challenge artistically was to find a focal point in a landscape that was covered in glass and graffiti.
It was so visually busy it was almost distracting. Technically the biggest challenge i faced was the enormous range of stops between shadows and highlights.
I was pretty happy with this final image and i still cant decide if i prefer it in colour or black and white, though i've choosen the colour option to highlight the difference after post production in photoshop. Regardless of the result of the competition it got me thinking about photography in a new way so its been a really enjoyable challenge.
The RAW photo blog by Tristan Judd is full of reviews and interviews and i was fortunate to be one of the first interviewed several months ago. You can read my interview here.
Finally as a side note, does anyone recognise the "Monster Image" on the left. It is none other than the internationally famous "Beastman" - Brad Eastman. I love his style and iconic images that can be found scattered throughout Australia.
With news of the impending cyclone Bianca coming to wreak havoc on the city of Perth, Western Australia i was salivating at the thought of the capturing Perth's best storm photography since the storm that tore through Perth's Western Suburbs in March 2010.
Fortunately for Perth and unfortunately for storm photographers cyclone Bianca had faded dramatically by the time it hit Perth and we received little more than a good soaking for our lawns.
What cyclone Bianca did provide was some dramatic cloud formations that i knew would create powerful landscape images. Heading out on Saturday i was looking for a good vantage point to capture the sky's looking into the sunset.
My first stopping point was Point Walter, though with the focal point being either the Sandbar facing North or the Jetty facing East, it wasn't right. Moving on i started heading to either Leighton Beach / North Fremantle or Cottesloe where i knew i could look straight over the Indian Ocean as the sun set.
On the way, I stopped in-between Blackwall Reach in Bicton and the Bicton Baths. This beautiful stretch of river is so scenic and the wind had died down making for ideal conditions for landscape photography.
The image above is at a little beach landing where people store their boats. This shot is a 9 image stitch created in Photoshop CS5. I also used a neutral graduated filter to help emphasise the power that mother nature can create when angry.
As with all my photographic expeditions lately, whenever i seem to get a landscape that I'm really happy with i manage to break something in my rush to get the photo.
This time shortly after this set of photos was taken the leg of my tripod wasn't secure and it my canon DSLR smashed onto one of the boats smashing the graduated filter. Little damage for a great shot unfortunately but i must remember to not rush so much and enjoy the landscape photography experience a little more.
As part of the photography challenges we were set on the Perth Photography Tours that i will help run from Fremantle, each participant was asked to find and photograph the elements and principles that were discussed and taught prior to the the challenge. It's a great way of getting a photographer to think about his surroundings in a way that they may not of thought about before. In this photograph the challenge was to find texture set around the Fremantle markets, I have captured the rough texture of the bark and also focused on the lines created from the branch of the trees. The soft dappled light helps to emphasise the texture much more than if it was in harsh direct sunlight.
I had a great morning today as part of a photography tour around the streets of Fremantle that's aimed at giving all participants the basic photography skills to take better photos whether around Perth or for future travel photography.
I will be taking running some of these courses in the coming weeks and months so it was great to pick up on the advice of other professional photographers in Perth as well as Sydney.
The aim of the course was to communicate in a 3 hour lesson some of the key principles and elements of photography such as line, texture, form, shape as well as tips on portrait photography in direct sunlight and shady conditions.
The tour took us on a leisurely stroll through the picturesque town of Fremantle, Western Australia starting at the Fremantle town hall and ending at my favorite destination...Little Creatures Brewery.
The photograph above was taken at the Moores gallery on Henry Street Fremantle. Aside from having without a doubt the best coffee in Fremantle (Moore & Moore Cafe) if not all of Perth, the Moores gallery hosts some amazing exhibitions. Currently there is a photographic exhibition on street art which features some fascinating photos of graffiti and derelict buildings including the famous South Fremantle Power Station. The top floor of the Moores gallery was in this case empty and i loved the light which was falling through the window on to the raw floorboards and rustic walls.
If you have any interest in participating in one of these photography courses please contact me and i will forward you all the details.
Chris Bishop professional commercial, landscape & travel photographer based in Perth, Western Australia.