2012 Is Flying By…

Wow, I can’t believe we’re nearly at the end of April and I haven’t posted anything this year.

Photography wise, I have had a quiet start to the year. Other than photography, I’m also interesting in running – although I’m not really built to be a runner. For a long time, it’s been my goal to run a marathon and on the 15th April I achieved my goal. The actual event hurt more than I was expecting, and I wasn’t expecting it to be easy. The thing about completing a marathon though isn’t the pain of running the event it’s the time commitment to do all the training.

Now that the marathon is done, I’ve got the free time I wanted to focus on something else I’ve been planning to do for quite a while – begin a photography degree. Doing some kind of formal training/qualification really appeals to me because it will provide me a structure for progression. The course I have chosen is the OCA – The Art of Photography. Other than providing the structure, the reasons that I’ve chosen this particular course are:

  • It’s distance learning so I can go at my own pace and study when it suits me.
  • The final deadline for each module is 2 years away so if something else comes along that forces me to stop studying for a while I won’t have lost everything (hopefully).
  • The way you record your progression is to maintain a learning blog. I thought this was a great idea as it’s effectively what I’m trying to do with this blog anyway.

So, I signed up last Monday and I’m now just awaiting for the course notes to arrive. This in itself has been a bit of a disaster. I’d asked for the notes to be delivered to my Wife’s work address but they tried to deliver them at my home address yesterday. Luckily, I was planning to work from home today anyway so I’m now eagerly awaiting there arrival (If they don’t come today it’s going to be a bit of a nightmare trying to get them). After signing up, I quite quickly got an email from my assigned tutor, Caroline. The email included a link to Caroline’s own personal website and her contact details. This was a nice reassuring first piece of communication and I have no doubt that I’m going to be learning a tremendous amount on this course.

I’ve still been going to the GPS meetings most weeks and finding it very interesting. Competition wise I got a good score with this image:

Misty Wey 4

There have also been some very interesting and inspiring talks from Tony Worobiec and John Beardsworth. Tony was showing and talking about landscape images taken well after sunset demonstrating the amount of detail that can be picked up in the soft lighting conditions and John was talking about B & W photography and the workflow and processing that can be done to achieve great results. I’ll be looking into books from both these photographers and authors at some point in the future.

The final thing to note is that in the last few weeks I’ve been becoming a bit of a lightroom convert. I’m quite amazed at just how easy and flexible the application is to use and although I can’t see it replacing GIMP completely at this point, I can see it becoming my main processing tool.

So that’s the update for my 2012 so far. I look forward to posting much more regularly once my course notes turn up.

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