Category Archives: Tuition and Tutorials

Liverpool night photography workshops booking now!

Just because it’s dark, that doesn’t mean that we can’t take stunning photographs. Using long exposure and flash techniques we can capture beautiful creative images like these.

FOR COURSE DATES AND BOOKINGS CLICK HERE

Liverpool-waterfront
Focusing on the docks

If you’re new to photography or looking to expand your skills not join me a night walk along the stunning Liverpool waterfront? This course is designed to be an introduction to the basics of DSLR photography, taking you from auto snapper to manual master in 3 photo filled hours. Learn about exposure modes, when and how to use manual settings and how to get the most out of your DSLR as well as meeting like minded photographers in your area. There’s something for everyone whether you’ve just picked up your first camera or are a more experienced photographer looking to try something new. The walks start with the basics of camera operation and move on to more advanced techniques such as light painting and capturing traffic trails.

Wales in the mist

With over ten years experience in leading and teaching groups, I’m thrilled to be able to share my experience in education and passion for photography. Each walk features group and one-to-one time to help you with any specific questions or image styles you want to achieve.
Walks last for 3 hours per evening with a maximum of 10 per group. All you will require is a DSLR camera (ask if you’re not sure), a tripod (essential) and suitable clothing. For light painting a torch or LED light is required, external flash units can also be used if you have them.

The workshop is hands on, you’ll be snapping continuously and receive constant feedback on your work. The friendly group atmosphere is a perfect setting to make new friends and learn new techniques.

Click here to see examples shot by previous workshop attendees.

Learn light painting techniques

Last years night walks proved very popular and workshops have limited availability. Register now to avoid disappointment. To keep up to date with all the latest info ‘like’ and follow the jonhallphoto facebook page now.

Evening night walks cost £75 for a 3 hour session.Here’s what previous clients had to say about the walks:

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Thanks for the course last night on Night Photography, it was a great boost to my confidence at getting to grips with using my DSLR outside of the “green” automatic mode.  I have always been interested in the Light trail photos and I am please with my first attempts.  I can’t wait to get out on my next evening photography walk!  –  Alan D

Despite the weather (on the nightwalk) I found it terrifically interesting and it made me aware of the kind of images that I could get even from my humble G9. I learned a lot, enjoyed it and thought you did a cracking job of informing and teaching without being in your face or stand-off ish. Thanks again for a great course and giving me the enthusiasm to learn more and keep exploring my camera. Cheers! – Jim R

Many thanks for the course last night. I thought the course was great and I really liked your teaching style, which gave just the right amount of information without being over technical. I really enjoyed the lighting effects you showed us with the torches / mobile phones.  Please keep me informed of any other courses you run.  –  Helen D

Just a note to say how much I enjoyed the recent Liverpool Night walk course. I wasn’t sure if I’d be out of my depth but as a beginner I found it very helpful and feel much more confident about the use of my Camera. I thought you did a great job to guide everyone whilst providing individual attention where needed. The 3 hours flew by and it was nice to experience the Albert Dock area on such a lovely night. I will look out for other courses as I can now appreciate the benefit that these may bring. – James H

Just thought that I would say how useful the course you ran last night was for me, and I believe the other people who attended. My son and I both picked up a lot of information and the way you put it over was very simple and easy to understand. Considering the weather was so cold it was down to you that everyone stayed to the end. Hopefully you will run some other courses in the future as it is obvious to me that you have plenty to teach us. Once again thank you for your assistance.  –  Keith C

How do you improve an already awesome sword fight? …Lightsabers.

You may remember the Musketeers stage combat trailer from my last post. That was a video completed in one editing session to try to get it selling tickets as quickly as possible so I thought “how could I improve this with a painstakingly long and tedious process that will shut me away from the outside world for nearly a week?”

The answer?   Lightsabers.

It turns out that adding a bit of Jedi flair to your videos is pretty labour intensive work, requiring you to individually animate every frame of your light sabers. It takes forever.

I won’t go into too much detail here. If you want to have a go yourself I’ve added some useful links to the bottom of this post.

The effect is achieved using Adobe After Effects. Each saber is created by animating a mask across a coloured solid. Once all of the movement is complete, clashes and sound effects are added.

If you want to try your own, take a look at these tutorials and post your work in the comments section.

The perfect gift for a budding photographer – Night photography workshops in Liverpool.

Whether you’re want to improve your skills or are looking for a unique gift for a fellow photographer you can’t go wrong with a night photography workshop from JonHallPhoto.

Learn to get out of auto mode and free your photo potential with a 3 hour night walk around some of Liverpool’s most famous landmarks. All you need to get started is a DSLR camera, a tripod and a sense of adventure..

Dates have been added for December and January with more to follow in the new year.

Check out the details on this site and grab your voucher for just £75 here.

A fine day for a photo walk – Sun and skateboards in Liverpool

Following the success of the winter night walks I couldn’t wait to get back out onto the streets of Liverpool with a brand new group of eager photographers for our summer photo workshops.Perfect weather for high-speed photography

Perfect weather for high speed photography

The workshop is intended as an introduction to photography for those who have just bought a DSLR camera but more and more I see people who have owned their camera for years but always shoot in Auto  mode. Perhaps that’s the problem with modern DSLR cameras, they can make almost any situation pretty good. Pretty good but often a bit.. lacking.

Letting the camera make all the decisions means predictable, safe images but it doesn’t take much to turn those snaps into something special. Sometimes that means using exposure compensation when shooting outdoors into the sun. Sometimes it means using your ISO to maintain a high shutter speed to capture action.

This week, a group of local skaters provided the perfect subjects as the group tested their new skills capturing fast moving action against the sun. Using a combination of higher ISO’s, large apertures and continuous focus we were able to keep our subjects in sharp focus and avoid the blurry silhouettes that auto settings might produce.

The group produced some great shots and I hope to be able to share them soon but for now, here’s a few that I managed to snap between talking and quickly learning how to operate a Samsung micro 4/3 camera.

If you’d like to join us on a Liverpool docks photo walk you can grab a voucher here for just £29 until the 29th of July.

 

Liverpool photography walks with JonHallPhoto booking now!

Click here to see available dates and book your workshop or buy a gift voucher

Learn to snap fantastic images with your DSLR camera on a fun filled photo walk along the Liverpool waterfront and Docks.

Liverpool-waterfront
Focusing on the docks

This workshop is designed to be an introduction to the basics of DSLR photography, taking you from auto snapper to manual master in 3 photo filled hours.

You’ll learn about exposure modes, when and how to use manual settings and how to get the most out of your DSLR as well as meeting like minded photographers in your area. There’s something for everyone whether you’ve just picked up your first camera or are a more experienced photographer looking to try something new. The walks start with the basics of camera operation and move on to more advanced techniques.

With over ten years experience in leading and teaching groups, I’m thrilled to be able to share my experience in education and passion for photography. Each walk features group and one-to-one time to help you with any specific questions or image styles you want to achieve.
Walks last for 3 hours with a maximum of 10 per group. Take the opportunity to practice your skills at the Liverpool wheel, the Liver building and around the famous docks. All you will require is a DSLR camera (ask if you’re not sure), and a tripod. The workshop is hands on, you’ll be snapping continuously and receive constant feedback on your work. The friendly group atmosphere is a perfect setting to make new friends and learn new techniques.

Click here to see examples shot by previous workshop attendees.

light trails photography in liverpool city centre at night

So far this years walks have proved very popular and workshops have limited availability. Register now to avoid disappointment. To keep up to date with all the latest info ‘like’ and follow the jonhallphoto facebook page now.
Liverpool photo walks cost £75 per person for a 3 hour workshop.

Here’s what previous clients had to say about the Liverpool photo

walks:

Thanks for the course last night on Night Photography, it was a great boost to my confidence at getting to grips with using my DSLR outside of the “green” automatic mode.  I have always been interested in the Light trail photos and I am please with my first attempts.  I can’t wait to get out on my next evening photography walk!  –  Alan D

Despite the weather (on the nightwalk) I found it terrifically interesting and it made me aware of the kind of images that I could get even from my humble G9. I learned a lot, enjoyed it and thought you did a cracking job of informing and teaching without being in your face or stand-off ish. Thanks again for a great course and giving me the enthusiasm to learn more and keep exploring my camera. Cheers! – Jim R

Many thanks for the course last night. I thought the course was great and I really liked your teaching style, which gave just the right amount of information without being over technical. I really enjoyed the lighting effects you showed us with the torches / mobile phones.  Please keep me informed of any other courses you run.  –  Helen D

Just a note to say how much I enjoyed the recent Liverpool Night walk course. I wasn’t sure if I’d be out of my depth but as a beginner I found it very helpful and feel much more confident about the use of my Camera. I thought you did a great job to guide everyone whilst providing individual attention where needed. The 3 hours flew by and it was nice to experience the Albert Dock area on such a lovely night. I will look out for other courses as I can now appreciate the benefit that these may bring. – James H

Just thought that I would say how useful the course you ran last night was for me, and I believe the other people who attended. My son and I both picked up a lot of information and the way you put it over was very simple and easy to understand. Considering the weather was so cold it was down to you that everyone stayed to the end. Hopefully you will run some other courses in the future as it is obvious to me that you have plenty to teach us. Once again thank you for your assistance.  –  Keith C

Client feature – Gary Wells’ beautiful liverpool cityscapes

This winter’s night photography walks were interesting to say the least.

Storms, floods and horizontal winds did their best to get in the way but many intrepid photographers either braved the weather or waited for a rare window in the conditions to join me on a night photography walk along Liverpool docks.

Most clients I see are taking their first steps into night photography and I always ask them to send me their favourite shots. You can see a gallery of images from previous clients here.

The evening Gary joined me it was dry but very windy, not ideal for long exposure photography. A few weeks later I received an email saying he had returned on a calmer day. The attached images were so impressive I wanted to share some of them here. It’s clear that Gary knows how to take a great picture and I’m thrilled I was able to help him create images like these.

I love the sense of movement that Gary has captured by using long exposures. The traffic light shot is beautifully timed to show the path of the car as well as red, amber and green lights.

The mirror like surface of the water has made some beautiful reflections and his eye for a ‘lead in’ to the photo makes it hard to pick a favourite.

What do you think? Leave a comment and have your say.

Stitching shots – a Gigapixel panorama

So you want to shoot a dramatic landscape that requires an ultrawide lens. If you don’t have an ultrawide or you need more detail than your camera can capture you can always use photoshop to stitch more than one image together.

2000 pixels wide
2000 pixels wide

This image was composed of 9 separate frames shot with a Nikon 70-200 VR lens. I used the 70mm end as it has minimal distortion and hand held a series of shots starting from the left and panning right. It’s important to overlap your shots as this will make it easier for photoshop to find anchor points to compose your panorama. If you haven’t corrected your shots before merging you may find the horizon uneven. This is tricky to correct once merged so be careful when shooting to place your horizon in the same part of each frame.

When capturing your shots ready to stitch make sure that you set your camera to manual mode. Find an exposure value, white balance and focal length that works for the whole scene and lock them so you have no variation in your final image. Once you have your images ready to go you can load them using one of two methods.

  1. In Lightroom, Select your images then right click ‘Edit it > Merge to panorama in Photoshop.
  2. In Photoshop, click File > Automate > Photomerge.

Photomerge offers several options, by all means try them out but ‘Auto’ tends to work well for most situations.

Photoshop will import your images and attempt to arrange them by finding key points and creating layer masks to make a starting point for your panorama. Once the layers are complete you can use the brush tool to reveal or hide details from each layer.

The full size version of this shot is a rather frightening 1.24 Gigapixel image, larger than any DSLR currently available can produce. At 300DPI this image could be printed at over 2m wide.

This is just an outlined version of the process. For detailed workshops on capturing and creating with photoshop see the tutorials section for one to one sessions.

Detail crop from centre
Detail crop from centre