Saturday, September 26, 2009

Stourhead, A Garden For All Seasons

Stourhead Gardens in Wiltshire has long been one of my favourite places. It is the most photogenic of places at any time of year. Some of my favourite shots of Stourhead are now available on Red Bubble and in my new Imagekind Store

The gardens were designed by Henry Hoare II and laid out between 1741 and 1780 in a classical 18th-century design set around a large lake, achieved by damming a small stream. The inspiration behind their creation were the painters Claude Lorrain, Poussin and, in particular, Gaspar Dughet, who painted Utopian-type views of Italian landscapes. It is similar in style to the landscape gardens at Stowe.

Included in the garden are a number of temples designed to show off the Hoare family’s education and wealth. On one hill overlooking the gardens there stands an obelisk and King Alfred’s Tower (a 50-metre-tall, brick folly designed by Henry Flitcroft in 1772); on another hill the temple of Apollo provides a vantage point to survey the magnificent rhododendrons, water, cascades and temples. Amongst the woodland surrounding the site there are also two Iron Age hill forts: Whitesheet Hill and Park Hill Camp. The gardens are home to a large collection of trees and shrubs from around the world.

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Sunday, September 20, 2009

NEW! 2010 Calendars Available Now!

My 2010 calendars are now available to preview and buy on Red Bubble. There are 6 titles to choose from:

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The Great British Beach Hut

Brightly coloured beach huts are an essential part of the British coast. They go together with ice creams, sandcastles and the unreliable British weather to form part of our experience of summer by the seaside. In recent years the spirit of nostalgia for the British coast has meant that beach huts, in some locations, can sell for more money than houses in other areas and given that you cannot stay overnight in them and many need annual maintenance, this is really saying something!

West Wittering Beach Huts

Whilst taking images for a competition at my local camera club based on the Great British Summer I became a tad obsessed with Beach Huts. You can find some of my best in my Beach Hut Collection on Red Bubble including my latest image (featured above).

If you like Beach Huts as much as I do (probably unlikely :o) you may be interested in my Flickr Group Beach Hut Elite with features some of the very best Beach Hut images on Flickr, so do drop by and take a look.

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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Honey, I Shrunk Toronto!

Tilt-shift miniature faking is a post-processing technique, which involves selectively blurring a photo to simulate the narrow depth of field found in macro photography and some tilt-shift photography, making the image appear to be of a miniature model. (Description from Wikipedia)

If you fancy having a go at making a miniature, is a site does all the hard work for you, upload your image or use the URL of your image location to create a miniature in just a couple of clicks, preview, then download the full size… Job Done!

I tried out this site for the first time yesterday with some of my images and got a couple of quite pleasing results, (click on the images to view larger). The hardest part was finding images that this treatment might suit, and in my opinion it works much better if you are looking down on a subject in the original shot.

Gargnano, Lake Garda, Italy

If you would rather have a go at making this effect yourself in Photoshop, here is a tutorial I found. Also check out 50 great examples of fake miniature photography here.

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