Tuesday, 25 August 2009

EMotion: Personality Portraits

Everyone has a personality, and everyone looks slightly different. I explored this idea by producing some self portraits. In each i look slightly different, mainly due to my hair or what i am wearing.
At first they were nothing more than portraits. However i realised they are sort of an expansion on the photos i produced for my assignment on Identity. See Flickr ( http://www.flickr.com/photos/danielkearney/tags/identity/ )

Ideally i would have liked to use two lights just to balance things up and basically make them look more professional. However i did what i could. Hopefully when i get back to Uni i can play around in the studio more, to make them better. If so i may continue the series.

Enjoy and please comment, they all help.

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

No Motion: Bowland Wild Boar Farm

Had a family day out to the Bowland Wild Boar Farm last week. I've spent many happy hours there as a kid so we decided to go back there to see how it has changed.
My niece loved the place. Especially the chance to touch and hold chicks.

I think this Wallaby was looking for a lighter.
The Wallabies perhaps the best attraction, because you could go in the enclosure with them and get really close.
As the name suggests, there are more boars than anything else. Perhaps not as popular with the smaller kids, because they tend to hide in the long grass during the hottest time of day, and they aren't as exciting to look at as perhaps the Wallabies. Personally though i think they're great.

We were joined for dinner by many finches and tits. The dinning room there also serves as a great hide to get some great photos. And dinner was the second reason for our visit. Some of the boars are bread for slaughter, to be used as sausages and bacon. Possibly the best sausage and bacon barm that i've ever had.
Another highlight of the day was seeing the relatively rare Nuthatch (above). However if it wasn't for my incompetence to use a high enough shutter speed i would have actually got some sharp photos; but at least i'll know for next time. I wasn't best pleased with myself.

The chick holding was held twice daily, and some of them were only a day old.

InMotion: Blackpool Air Show 2009

In the post

InMotion: The Nocturne Series I mentioned that cycling is the hardest thing i have photographed, but also that this statement may change after i have photographed the Blackpool Air Show 2009. Well that statement still stands. Though shooting the planes was rather difficult, thanks to my rather small 200mm lens, it meant the planes were always in the frame, making life that little bit easier.

The event itself was great, and another fine example of how great Blackpool is if your in the right place at the right time. In previous years we have been treated to performances by the Tornado F16, the Harrier Jump Jet, a fly-by by the latest RAF plane, the Eurofighter Typhoon. This year however was a slightly more sedate pace, with far more propellor planes on show.

The first display, though rather sedate, was probably the highlight of the show for many people. It featured planes from World War II. The Lancaster Bomber, a Hurricane, and a Spitfire. It was great to these old planes flying again, in the formation they would have used during the war, with the two fighter planes flanking the bomber to act as protection from an aerial attack. What made the display even more special was knowing the the Lancaster Bomber is only one of two flight worthy Lancaster's left, with the other one based in Canada. So to see this plane in flight was a privilege.

Next up was a more daredevil display by a wing walker, with the pilot performing many sharp turns and loops, whilst the wing walker also performed various spins and flips on top of the plane. Normally there are two planes that fly in tandem, but unfortunately there was a problem with the second plane that kept it grounded.

Another great sight, and meteoric sound, was the arrival of the Vulcan Bomber. The plane that as the name suggests is as large as a bomber, but can perform turns as sharp as a fighter aircraft, as the pilot so kindly demonstrated scaring several children in the process. I thought it was excellent though.

Another display was by a team called "The Blades" which consisted of ex-Red Arrows pilots in powerful propellor powered planes that capable defying gravity by simply turning the plane vertically and powering into the sky, before spiraling seemingly out of control back towards the sea, before pulling up. They put on a great display.

Obviously the highlight for many people was the annual performance by the Red Arrows. Once again putting on a great display of formation flying as well as aggressive combat style flight, including barrel rolls, loops and corkscrews.

Concord may not fly any more, but the red arrows do their best to imitate it's famous silhouette.
I don't normally brag about my own pictures, but i love this one, so much so i have done a zoom and crop to show the reason why. I was so happy with the detail i was able to capture. Not only the smoke, but the lights and the vortices streaming off the wings too.

I hope you enjoyed the images, and i'll be bring you more images of great events from Blackpool in the next few weeks. Who says Blackpool's boring?

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

No Motion: Photo Story

It was a beautiful Saturday summers day, so me and my sister decided to go for an afternoon out. It's slightly cheesy; but here's the day as a Photo Story, think of it as a narrative perhaps.

We went to
in my sisters car, which is a

At Guy's Thatched Hamlet there is a
which we walked along before also walking along the A6 through Bilsborrow.

We walked back along the canal and across the
We got back to Guy's Thatched Hamlet, and met a friend who has a
Told you it was slightly cheesy.

Anyway, here are some more shot's from the day.

My sisters Mini Clubman and our friends Subaru Impreza
A bigger view of Guy's Thatched Hamlet. The Hamlet is a restaurant, pub, market and also has accommodation; and set against the Lancaster Canal makes for a picturesque place. Visit their website for more info. http://www.guysthatchedhamlet.co.uk/

There are also some brilliant looking houses along the Canal.
An artistic shot of the canal water.

EMotion: Upon the fields of Gold(en Fire)

Barley Field

EMotion: Self Portraits

The house was empty and i had a flash gun to borrow for the weekend... so i did some self portraits just to get some practice using a flash gun for future.
Natural Light

Friday, 14 August 2009

InMotion: Barn Owl (again)

So here we go again. Incredibly noisy, and slightly blurred pics of a barn owl, flying through a field, at roughly 10 pm, when it's nigh on pitch black. But i thought i'd share them anyway.
If only the Barn Owl were to come out earlier, it would make life so much easier.
I was gutted with this picture. Regardless of the noise, i would have loved it if the owl was sharp, but unfortunately not. I just love his/her wing position.
I was even more gutted with this one, because the owl is really sharp, but the noise really does spoil the image... but what else can i do to get a workable image when it's so dark.
Enjoy them anyway.

Sunday, 9 August 2009

NoMotion: An Unusual View of Blackpool

I'm not going to ramble on today, I'm just going to present you with a photograph.

Thursday, 6 August 2009

InMotion: The Nocturne Series

Blackpool is a place where drunken louts come and have stag and hen nights, and generally just trash the place without a care in the world other than themselves.
Blackpool is also a home, to people like myself, and other who actually appreciate what Blackpool has to offer. Every year, major British and International events are staged in Blackpool, for all types of people from, music, dance, theatre and multiple sports disciplines.
As for myself, i am more interested in the sports events that are held here. One such event happened last weekend (Saturday 1st August), The Nocturne Series. The Nocturne Series is a series of quite prestigious bicycle races. In fact there are only three in the series; one in Edinburgh, one in London, and the last being held in Blackpool., which i think is quite an achievement and privilege.
The event attracted some big name riders. Rob Hayles, Commonwealth Gold medalist, Ed Clancy, four time World Champion and Olympic Gold medalist, as well as South African rider Robbie Hunter, who has a Tour de France Stage win to his name, amongst other numerous successes.
The event in Blackpool was great. The event took place over a 950 metre course that started on the promenade, before circling Blackpool Tower, back to the promenade heading north before a tight hairpin brought them back south to the finish line.
There was a warm up race, which had more local riders in which started and finished in relative daylight. (Pictures 1-4)

The main event however, didn't start until 9 pm, and night soon rolled in, making it both difficult for myself taking the photographs, and of course the riders.
This was the third time i had tried to photograph a cycle race, and i still stand by the statement that it is the hardest thing i have ever tried to photograph, perhaps because the area for focusing is so small and they move so fast. However this time i think i finally got some good shots.
This statement may change however when i attempt to photograph the Red Arrows performing in Blackpool on Sunday (it's all go here you know)
There were many people staggering out of the bars and clubs who who were strangely bemused by bicycles flying past them them quicker then most cars normally travel down the promenade. Some found themselves being escorted away however.
I took a vantage point at the hairpin, which proved to be quite a good decision, as i got some good shots, and saw some great action. Some of the bikes such as above, were amazing. Almost pieces of art. One piece carbon-fibre frame, with deep dish rims carbon rims, which made a fantastic noise when the brakes were applied.
This guy (above) was truly spectacular...

... as you can see he likes to lean the bike over quite a lot, which proved to be his undoing. With in moments of this shot, he was on the floor with the biking kicking off the kerb and sliding down the road, just inches from my lens. Unfortunately i didn't capture the moment; i was more bother about making sure my lens was still attached to my camera.

Above: Possibly my favourite shot from the evening.

I wish i had found this corner earlier in the race when there was still some available light. Photographically not that great, but the spectacle was amazing. They were riding on cobbles, around a 90 degree bend... and did they brake... did they heck. The speed that they were carrying was emense, and trying to capture was proving to be extremely difficult in the dim light. The resulting images proved to be extremely noisy, but i kind of like it.
I hope these two shots purvey the kind of speeds they were travelling at.
Above: Oh yeah, this is Ed Clancy 4 x's World Champion and olympic Gold Medalist... did i mention he was British.

See Blackpool not all about having a good time... well it is... just in a different way.