My weekly sketch of things I love this week is.....Photography. This is a very recent passion, spurred on in the large part by a desire to document my little family. My sister has always had a keen eye for photography, and takes some really beautiful pictures. She owns the food blog Bilberry Tart, and as you can see the photography on the site is stunning. (The recipes are pretty yummy too!) My husband bought me a Canon SLR camera for my birthday, and my sister has been introducing me to a world of ISO and apertures (well I took some of it in). My husband and I have always had little photography competitions when we go out, so I'm hoping with my new camera to be reigning champion.
For my birthday, I also received The Digital Photography Book by Scott Kelby, which I'm really enjoying reading. He delivers his expertise in a chatty and humorous fashion. Some of the advice is more technical than I'm willing to go and more money than I'm willing to spend, but he also has really simple tips. One of my favourite tips is sure to stop one thing I am always guilty of on photos; having my eyes closed. He says when you are taking group shots ask the people you are photographing to close their eyes and to open them on the count of three. You then take the photo a second after you say three and everyone should have their eyes open.
I'm also starting to drive all my family mad with instagram and what's app. They are getting a constant barrage of pictures of my baby boy. Sometimes I take so many that it becomes a flicker book of his every move. I was intending to learn how to manually alter images in an instagram type fashion on my computer using GIMP, but then I found the free to download program Perfect Effects 4. This has many of the masks that you can get on instagram, plus some excellent retouching features to smooth out wrinkles and imperfections. (Post to follow on free and easy ways to improve your pics in post production.)
If you enjoy taking pictures please take a look at the Yorkshire Bloggers Photography Competition. More importantly don't forget to SMILE!