Olympus Pen

Water Droplet Macro Shot

After recently attending an open day sale at Edinburgh’s Wex branch I came away with a new camera!!  I had had no intention of buying any more camera gear but I thought I’d have a look anyway.  I arrived at the store and the event was well attended.  I weaved my way around the crowds looking at the different stalls selling Sony, Olympus, Pentax, Panasonic, Canon and Nikon.

I was on the lookout for the Micro Four Thirds sellers.  There was a rep from Olympus but I was drawn to the used table with an array of lenses and camera bodies.

I did notice an Olympus Pen body and it was the cheapest item on the table at only £179.  In comparison, I noticed a Sony A7 full frame body at £700.  It suddenly occured to me – I needed a back up body for shooting weddings!!  Every wedding photographer should have two bodies for the big day and I realised I had an opportunity.

The camera body came with not much else – the box, a power lead, manual and disc were all that were on offer.  I had never owned an Olympus before and was excited at getting my first Pen – and – supporting the Micro Four Thirds industry – and – helping to save the planet by recycling camera gear rather than buying new.

I took the new camera body home and excitedly attached my Leica 12 to 60mm lens to see what would happen.  To my delight the camera was functioning fine with this lens.  Then I tried my Panasonic Macro lens and that too provided excellent shots.  I was experiencing the same joy as I did when I opened the box of my first new micro camera in 2018.

I sourced two spare batteries and charger from Amazon so cheaply I couldn’t believe it!!

I tested the Pen out by shooting some macro round the Loch Leven area and got some amazing water dropet shots – I was really enjoying myself with this new body.  It is so light compared to my other ‘big brother’ micro camera.  I was also astounded at how long the battery was lasting.  I had 7 separate macro shoots before the battery was empty!!

Not only now do I have a back up body for weddings but I can also enjoy macro photography too.  I then decided that I would quite like to try some street photography as this is what the Pen was deisgned for – being compact and discreet.  My Leica zoom is a little too front heavy for the Pen body.  After getting a copy of Amateur Photography I discovered Park Cameras and sourced a used Olympus 14 to 24 zoom lens which is exactly the lens that should have come in the box!!  I got this lens for only £59 – how about that!

So I await my lens and during the summer months I will enjoy doing some street photography in ‘Auld Reekie’ and new town of Edinburgh City.  I will experiment with the monochrome mode against some of Edinburgh’s most amazing architecture.  Students from all over the world come to study Edinburgh New Town’s architecture.  When you walk along George Street you notice that each house has its own unique stone design and motiffs.

I have now ordered a handy camera case to protect the camera while travelling and will keep you updated on my adventures!!

Fashion Modelling

03When I was approached this year to carry out some modelling photography, I was somewhat surprised – after all, the source of the job was most unexpected – a nice lady from the Green Hotel in Kinross had passed on my number to an up and coming model who had been looking for a photographer to help him produce a portfolio.  Apparently he had contacted Photographers in Edinburgh as he didn’t even think there were photographers in Perthshire.

There was also the added complication that although Edinburgh based photographers were available, their prices were OTT.

As a local photography and videography service in Kinross, I know what people can and can’t afford so am always able to speak with clients to see what I can do on their budget.

We got together on a frosty February morning, and started the best way of a shoot with lovely roasted coffee from Jocks Lodge bar at the Green Hotel.  Kinross by the way is a fantastic location for doing photography and videography.  It’s central to Edinburgh, Glasgow, Fife, Ayr, and Perth.

My model arranged the different types of clothes he wanted to change into and we started by doing some lobby and stair shots in the hotel.  We moved out into the centre garden court for some shots by the waterfall.

After a change we drove down to the Loch Leven where the water was frozen, so we had great fun slipping and sliding on the ice to get some shots of the frozen surface.

Then it was back to the hotel for more coffee!!  That’s what I like about photography or filming – the coffee breaks and fortunately for me, my client likes his coffee as much as I do!!

This experience made me realise that you don’t even need a studio to do modelling photography – all you need is imagination, which for me, is a prime requirement for a photographer or film maker.  The image capture begins with the thoughts in your head, and being creative in your head.

There’s nothing quite like shooting out in the countryside, surrounded by the natural environment – it’s invigorating!!

After visiting 3 different locations around the loch we were wrapped up after only four hours.  Of course we had to end the day with a final coffee at the Green Hotel which is a place I will be using for a discussion group in the not too distant future.

My client was happy with his edited shots so I look forward to doing more modelling work if possible in the near future!!

 

Joining the RSPB

sunset4 This year I decided to become a member of my local Royal Society for the Protection of Birds.  I decided for two reasons.  The first is that the RSPB Vane Farm site is right on my doorstep and I wanted to get my career more focused on trying to see if I can do something to help protect Wild Birds and my local nature reserve.

The second reason was that I was influenced by a couple of brown Kites who swooped down over my car one day earlier on this month while driving through the area of Dalqueich.

I stopped my car where the birds had chosen to land on some roadside tree branches just ahead of me.  I had a good look at one bird, looked at it right in the eye and at that moment the thought “I want to do something to protect you” entered my mind.

Within a couple of days I made a trip out to Vane Farm and spoke to Colin, one of the friendly staff, and signed up for a year’s membership.

I received my book on Scottish birds and have now decided that each day, while I go on my walk up the Kilmagad Woodland walk, I take a compact camera just in case I ever come across any evidence of cruelty to wild birds.

Fortunately I can say that there have been no recent reports of poisoning of Raptors in the Loch Leven and surrounding areas.

I enjoy hillwalking most days and armed with my book, I now enjoy trying to see if I can spot any wild bird life while out in nature.