Esther Beaton

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2019

What the Ranger Revealed

Revealing rock carvings

Talking about rocks (well, I was – in the last blog post), our Meetup group had a lucky encounter at one of our recent events. But it didn’t start out that way. Normally I do a reconnaissance before leading people to an obscure location. But this time I thought: oh, I’ve been there before, I’m …

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Add More Sparkle to Twilight Shots

sunset behind the subject

Talking about night time events, well, dusk really, one of the key things a photographer has to prepare for is the need to add light, that is, more light than is available from the sky.  At one of our recent Meetups, we started at The Haven in Terrigal. There were birds, boats, waves and people. …

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How to Turn Daylight into Night

looks like it was photographed by the light of the moon

There are several reasons to shoot at nighttime. Sometimes you want to create a gloomy, scary or heavy atmosphere. Sometimes the story or subject you want to illustrate occurred at night. But what to do if you are at your location in the middle of the day with no chance to return later?  That’s what …

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Outdoor photographers – why we do what we do

Photographer Jean-Paul Ferrero

I can understand why outdoor photographer Matthew Dwyer got blown off Bluff Knoll. I’ve been to the peak twice myself. At the top, the winds are fierce, as this tree can attest. I tend to take risks myself, but it’s nothing to what my ex-husband, Jean-Paul Ferrero used to do. In this photo, he had …

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Making great people photos

mixed lighting opposite colours

There are so many factors that go into good “people” shots. People photos for geographic magazines are a bit different from standard portraits. Sometimes they are raw photojournalism, but usually they fall into a genre called “environmental portraiture”. I’ve done this for so long now that I’ve come to really love it. The essential elements …

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Ambient “lighting” is easy

Sometimes you don’t have to work at creating a background because you are blessed with the colours of nature. Or you’re just smart enough to go out at sunrise or sunset. Both of these pictures are pre-dawn. The colour in the sky at this time is called “afterglow” and I especially like this twilight time …

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Rembrandt artist

Rather than using colour, as in the previous post, to get rid of a busy or dull background, you can accomplish it with exposure control alone. This artist worked in her garage and the best angle of her using her jewellery press had some old storage units behind her. The easiest thing was to turn …

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Building up your lighting

While on the subject of lighting, here are a couple more examples of adding colour. Using coloured flashes is one way to overcome a drab scene – and when you’re indoors, in a clinical environment, it’s always a drab scene. I like to think of it as building my scene, a bit like adding layers …

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The Worst Drought Ever – are the birds coping?

It’s the worst drought in New South Wales “in six generations” some say. Others say it’s the worst recorded since European settlement. Still others say the worst in 400 years.  Chiltern-Pt Pilot National Park, near the New South Wales border, is one of the world’s birding hotspots. When I was there on an assignment in …

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Victoria’s Coast and Photo Tip: Charming the Birds

There are some great bird photography locations in Victoria, but during my January trip the drought was playing havoc, with days of unexpected rain, paralytic heat, and dust storms. But even with a little persistence, even in the worst of weather you can still find a few plucky birds. The scenery along the shores of …

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