You know the moment when you see a potentially great image? It’s as soon as you can see all the possible elements blending together in your head, then for that magic moment to reveal itself in the camera.
Why do a pier project?
Well I have always had a love and been interest in our beautiful British old piers, their history and architectural design. My first love of piers probably stems back to my childhood of visiting relatives in Preston and been taken to Blackpool as a treat. They are associated with a fun time, family holidays, a escape from work and normal life etc. They are so typically British. “To promenade” its part of our language. I wanted to record them before they disappeared for ever. We have lost so many of our piers and many are struggling with funding and keeping up the maintenance.
Technique, materials and workflow:
I have been trying out Derwent Graphitint pencils and I particularly like the Shadow Graphitint pencil it adds shadow effects very well. What I love about all Derwents water colour pencils is how well they all blend and complement each other.
The brushes I like to use for this fine detail is the Winsor and Newton Sceptre Gold II 101 Round Size 00 brush. The Sceptre Gold range works very well for me as they have a mix of sable and synthetic which gives the spring and helps holds it shape well for the detailed work I do.
Images 1, 3 and 4 are approximately 22 x 15 inches. The image 2 shows an enlarged detail showing my hand colouring.
I have had great fun exploring my pier images and trying new techniques and methods of painting with my Derwent water colour pencils.
My work flow was as follows:
I used Nix Silver Efex Pro 2 to convert my image to Black and White. Once I was satisfied with the tonal range and detail I then printed onto St Cuthberts Saunders Waterford archival Fine Art Paper. I needed to leave the paper for a couple of days to dry. Once the ink was dry I then started to add selective colour using my watercolour pencil and wash brushes therefore creating a original piece of art.
The finished Pier results so far can be seen below and as soon as I complete my next pier which is Worthing Pier taken during the recent stormy weather I will upload to the blog and website at: janinekilroe.com Facebook at: facebook/janf64
Let me know your thoughts and if you like any images you see please contact me for more details and prices.
This is a brilliant site I can recommend re Piers http://www.piers.org.uk
1. EASTBOURNE PIER
2. EASTBOURNE PIER DETAIL
3. BRIGHTON PIER
4. BRIGHTON OLD PIER
All the images below have been shot using my iPhone and a wonderful App called Snapseed http://www.snapseed.com by Nik Software highly recommended it is super and very easy to use. When I’m in the field taking my photography on my Canon 5D MK II I like to take a record shot on my iPhone and do my Blipfoto http://www.blipfoto.com/browse/entries/me and Facebook using these images. There is still a lot of snobbery around photography and what equipment we use as far as I’m concerned if it looks good and could print to a reasonable size without depreciating too much then thats really cool. I plan to print using some of these iPhone images so watch this space 🙂
New Hand Coloured Photography Website Launch
I have just launched my new Hand Coloured Fine Art Photography website janinekilroe.com ready to go live which is very exciting as I have all my hand colour portfolio on show there. The poppies above are a series of photographs I took last year. I shoot in Infrared which I like as it reveals a world hidden from normal view.
My workflow and materials are as follows:
I am often asked what my materials of choice are and my Post Processing work flow. So here it is.
After the photograph I post process first using Lightroom to catalogue and back up and then I open my images in the wonderful http://www.niksoftware.com/site/ Nik Software Efex Pro2 enables me to totally control how I want my image to look. It enables me to go old school but in 2012, the equivalent of Dodging and Burning with Nik Software U Point Technology but with far more control then ever possible in my film days.
I then move into Photoshop CS6 and print through my Epsom Pro 4900 onto Saunders Waterford Fine Art water colour paper http://www.stcuthbertsmill.com/st-cuthberts-mill-paper/saunders-waterford-watercolour/ made by St Cuthberts http://www.stcuthbertsmill.com in Glastonbury England. Finding the best quality archival fine art paper has been quite a journey but I have now discovered St Cuthberts and am very happy with the very high quality and consistency they produce plus the fact the paper is archival and that they are a British company makes it even better!
My colouring medium has also been up until this year a case of trail and error to try and find the medium that was subtle enough for me to create a naturalistic finish to my work without overpowering the photograph itself. I don’t want the added colour to detract from the photograph itself but to simply complement it. The hand colouring aspect of my work is really the “icing on the cake” for my photography.
So you may ask how did I find my perfect colour medium? Well I will not use anything other than archival inks, paper and pencils. It is paramount to me that my art work will last for as long as possible 100 years plus.
The background to my Derwent Pencils http://www.pencils.co.uk choice is as follows.
I went to the Lakes as a photographic student in 1983 and fell in love with the grandeur and majesty of The Lakes vistas. I’m from the North, born in Preston Lancashire and very proud of my Northern roots. I had visited the Derwent Pencil Museum http://www.pencilmuseum.co.uk/shop/ in Keswick and did a project there as a student.
My family actually owned the Derwent Pencil Factory in 1901 for approximately 20 years then in 1916 it was called the Cumberland Pencil Company. So adding this all up it was a natural decision to give the pencils a try out, see if they could be subtle enough, archival and workable on my choosen St Cuthberts paper. The answer was an emphatic yes they could!
Not only are the Derwent Watercolour Pencils brilliant but I have recently discovered their Inktense water soluble pencils which I use on my Brighton Carousel Horsehttp://www.janinekilroe.com/gallery.php photograph below they are perfect for that style of image. I have even used them for some of my Poppy images http://www.janinekilroe.com/gallery.php to great effect.
To enquire or buy any of my art work then please go to http://www.janinekilroe.com/how-to-buy.php
A beautiful old classic pier one which has not burnt down! As many of the others along the south coast have!
I have just finished off my first Blurb book called “Still Quiet Voice” http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/detail/2712342
Basically the idea came about as I needed to buy a new notebook that I use for my reflections on life what I feel the Lord wants me to remember and also sermons etc. Blurb were doing a 25% off so instead of a plain note book I have used a selection of my personal images that I have taken mainly at a local retreat at Stanton St John and Launde Abbey. I am really pleased with the results it takes quite a bit of time to get it set out as you want but like anything once you have put the time in it becomes easier. Let me know what you think. Have a God blessed week take care.Love Janine XXX
Hi thank you for dropping in
I have had a really fruitful week exploring Photoshop. Its a program I have been using for probably five years for teaching photography and for my own photography needs. I am self taught and I have over the last few weeks put more time in to create some of the images you see on this blog and website.
I have always believed that if you are enjoying what you are learning then you will find it easier and will also enable you to learn a lot more. This is certainly what I have found. because I want to do some thing to my image I have a focus, goal, aim, desire call it what you want.
I have discovered two major revelations for my photographic Post Production in Photoshop. One is the Lasso Tool and the other is Feathering. They are revolutionary to the smooth seamless tweaking required to take a RAW file to the finished product. The techniques I employ in PS is the equivalent of a master printer in the darkroom Dodging (holding back the exposure) and Burning (adding more exposure to the print) and I must say involves a lot less time spent with brilliant results as you can see the difference between a image I was happy with a few months ago (second image) to todays version (1st image) I hope you can see the difference. To compare properly just click on the images and you wil be taken to my site where you can view them properly.
Please let me know if you prefer the first (latest version) or second image in your comments. These shots are from my Lake District Series and were shot in 2007. It is really satisfying been able to revisit a folder of work with new skills and understanding to see what one can create.
I have also really enjoyed isolating my main subject the single flower head and the blowing deck chairs against a Black and White background. What fun a simple image is but powerful to the eyes. I plan to create some postcards and greeting cards from some of the flower and deckchair manipulations. What do you think? would you buy them? What would you pay? Please let me know your thoughts.
Thank you for looking and your comments until next time God bless.
Had a wonderful weekend away with the family in our VW Westfalia motor home. Decided to follow up my first foray (see previous Busy Bee One post) with the bee hives and my plan was to take some infrared photographs of the hives and to get really close (inches from the hive entrance) with my Canon EF-S 10-22 mm wide angle lens and capture the bees flying in and out of the hive.
I had Lucy (a beautifully funny boarder terrier who is now two years old in the photo above she was just 6 weeks old ahhh) with me and had just finished photographing some wonderful poppies in colour and infrared having got them in the can. When I have processed these in Photoshop CS4 I will be putting them up on the website
I walked over to the hives. All the hives there were busy as Saturday was a perfect sunny day but still had fluffy white clouds in the sky always makes a more interesting photograph.
So there I stood with my camera set to a suitably fast enough shutter speed of 1/1000th to freeze the bees in flight. I must admit the thought of been attacked by a swarm of bees did cross my mind but was quickly dismissed as I was not doing them any harm was I?
The next thing I knew was that there was is a very very angry bee bussing very close to my face and showing a particular unhealthy interest in my nose! I tried in vain to get it away from its intended target. The next indication that this was going to really end in tears was the very strong and distinct warning smell the bee gave off. All alarmed bees will release a pheromone that stimulates the attack response in other bees.
Oh dear I was in trouble and quite a walk away from the van and sanctuary. The chain of events had been set I then felt the inevitable excruciating sting go in I immediately felt like I had been punched straight on the nose and within a few seconds I could feel a intense headache and huge pain around my nose. I retreated pretty quickly from the obvious danger I had put myself and the dog in tears streaming down my face with the pain as I stumbled away. I was left just hoping and praying none of the defending bees little friends were coming after me as well!
Of course when I got back to the van both Sophie and Nick thought it was hysterically funny and could not believe how daft I had been.
I had bought one of those insect bite pens from the chemist obviously a long time ago as it had use by 2005! I must say that they really do help take some of the sting away although the nose was not happy for many hours after.
So what have I learnt from this little adventure? Go with my first instinct? Easy in hindsight. Sometimes your first instinct is not necessarily the right and best choice.
Well clearly as far as the bee was concerned I was obviously a big threat to the hive. My perception of not being a threat to the hive was clearly not the same as the bees! It sacrificed its life to save the whole hives future generations and survival. I have learnt a very painful lesson and sometimes it takes a bit of pain to re focus us on the things in life that are really important we can all end up wandering off on our own a bit like the lost sheep. Thank God for the good shepherd eh?
I must admit I was full of mixed emotions when out of the blue 26 years latter I received a couple of emails in April from fellow students from my Photography Editorial and Advertising College course asking if it was really me. We girls are usually harder to track down having changed maiden names etc. All I can say is thank God for the technology we have at our disposal today and for my peers who were determined to find as many of us as possible. How people traced loved ones before this invention only God knows!
As the email sat in my In Box I was challenged to look back and examine “just what had Janine achieved over the last 26 years”?
What was important to me? My pride. My wealth? My professional achievements? What were my idols? What actually was important to me?
I also was not sure I wanted to open up a period of my life that was so full of hope and aspirations to what the future would hold for me and my college peers. What would I find?
I was really concerned about having to discuss the loss of our son Daniel who died when he was one year old. A experience no one wants to ever go through. We are not supposed to bury our children. How could I not include him when I was bound to be asked “Do you have any children”? For me this has always been a very difficult question to answer.
As the emails whizzed back and forth and I started to look at the Facebook profiles to get a idea of what people had been up to I then decided to contact my closest friend Kate from my college time. I had lost contact with everyone and had often thought about the characters and friendships. So I was now poised with an opportunity to take the risk and reopen this part of my life. I took the plunge and emailed Kate and we spoke for the first time on the phone for an hour. It was just like we had left the room for a moment and then returned! We decided to meet in London to have a proper catch up before the main event which you can read about in my previous post.
Lord will only enter into your life if you allow him to which is really cool he will never force his way in ! It’s up to the individual to make that decision.
The painting by William Holman Hunt played and still does a very significant part in my walk with God.I finally let the Lord into my life 5 years ago. My decision which was to be a very gradual process (of which I will share with you at a latter date) has totally changed my life for the better. I am no longer alone to try and deal with what life can sometimes throw at you. The Lord has graciously shown me who I am, gently healing painful wounds that we all take on as we move through our individual journeys.
I shared this reunion opportunity and concerns with friends and we prayed for the Lords guidance and protection.
We all compare ourselves with others it a human thing to do and that is what my initial reaction was regarding this reunion as I was sure everyone else was doing the same exercise.
My conclusions to my initial question: “What have you achieved over the last 26 years Janine”? Is this:
I am a child of God. I am secure in God. I finally know who I am. I am no longer on my own. Money does not buy you happiness or real friends. I have a wonderful supporting husband who has been with me through tough times and good times. We have been together since I was 16. We have two beautiful children on this Earth and one whom I will be reunited with at a latter date. I have truly been released from many past hurts.
I am free to take photographs that give me immense pleasure and satisfaction. I am able to express my love for Gods creation, this beautiful world. Through this blog and website I hope to share what he puts on my heart.
Thanks for reading this far.Please do leave your comments and thoughts they are all really appreciated
PS. The reunion was amazing it was such good fun to see all my peers to catch up and to share our lives again after 26 years we all seemed very comfortable in each others company I have not laughed so much. It was wonderful time I will never forget. Old friends reunited not to be lost again and to think I was contemplating not going!
Thanks guys for such a fantastic time xxx