Its Christmas Eve Tomorrow so I would like to wish you all A Very Merry Christmas and I hope Santa brings you all exactly what you asked for!
Merry Christmas and very best wishes for this festive season
Back stage and Eliot Kennedy gets a Christmas kiss under the mistletoe from Geraldine McQueen, winner of Britain’s Got the Pop Factor and Possibly a New Celebrity Jesus Christ Soapstar Superstar Strictly on Ice. AKA the British Comedy Genius Peter Kay
Saint Mary’s Church Ecclesfield also Known as “The Minster of The Moors” is the final resting place of Rev. Alexander John Scott, Chaplain and close personal friend of Admiral Lord Nelson. It was to Rev. Alexander John Scott that Nelson spoke his last words “God and my country.” below decks of the Flagship HMS victory at the Battle of Trafalgar. Nelson died at 16:35 on the 21 October 1805. His friend Scott lived to the age of 72 and died in 1840.
Its odd that Scott should have been buried in Ecclesfield. He was not born in the area and didn’t live in the area. He was in Ecclesfield visiting his daughter Margaret, a well known writer of the time who was married to the then Vicar of Ecclesfield Alfred Gatty, when he was taken ill and subsequently died. What is stranger is travel five miles by road and under what is now a Tesco car park is where the Walker Iron Works of Masbrough was. They cast about 80 of the 105 guns carried by HMS Victory into Battle at Trafalgar. Closer still is the village of Grenoside, only two and a half miles away, where Samuel and Aaron Walker began to manufacture Iron in the early 1740s before relocating and starting in 1746 as Walker Iron Works of Masbrough.
Everyone misses a picture, even the pros don’t get every shot every time but sometimes, just sometimes there is something you can do to salvage an image you really wanted but just didn’t quite get.
The photograph below is my cousin with his niece at a family party. I spotted the opportunity grabbed the camera and the shot unfortunately having consumed the odd (double) Bacardi and Coke or two I missed one small but very important detail, the on button for the flash. Three frames later, the moment has passed and the best of the three images is the one below, rather orangey red, dark and slightly too soft.
For the technically minded it was shot on a Nikon D700 and 50mm f1.8 lens. The settings were manually set to: 1000 ISO, f4.5, 1/60th sec.
On the night I wrote off the shot as a duff one but I didn’t delete it, I never do, I think its because, back in the days of film, I was taught never throw away a negative. The next morning , well OK lunchtime, it was a great party and we did have one or two more of those Bacardi and Cokes, I spotted the shot again and considered it worthy of five minutes TLC. My first instinct was to lighten it and try and take some of the redness out. While I was pleasantly pleased with the results of lightening the photograph it quickly became apparent that recovery wasn’t going to be totally successful thanks to masses of colour noise while trying to get the colour balance right, at which point I decided to get all retro and just turn the thing Black and White. A little more fiddling this time with contrast and unsharp mask to loose some of the softness in the photograph and finally a little cropping to tighten the picture up and hey presto the result……..
You cant make a silk purse out of sows ear, as they say, and the same goes when trying to recover a photograph like this one. Sometimes a mistake will leave you with an image that really is not salvageable, no matter how skilled you are or how much time and effort you put into it, so be realistic. This photograph will never be a technically perfect image it will always be a little soft and a little noisy but it does leave me with a satisfied smile, especially after reading mums comments about her daughters photo in my Facebook photo album.
For those of you interested by my previous posting about Lytham St Annes 1940s weekend here is a link for the ladies who may fancy in dressing in classic retro style. This lady makes some wonderfully stylish and excellent quality hats which she sells via Ebay. 1940s berets, halo hats, 1920’s style cloche hats which would be great for murder mystery weekends, vintage car rallies or amateur dramatics and even Victorian style mop caps and aprons. You might wonder why a news and public relations photographer would pick up on site like this, so here is where I have to come clean and tell you its because Aileen is actually my partner. That said her hats really are very good and to prove it here she is modelling one of her 1940’s numbers and a link to her current selection of hats for sale.
Welcome to my blog. It may seem strangely named but `tog is actually an abbreviation of photographer which occasionally gets bandied about in newsrooms up and down the country, while “owd” is the Yorkshire pronunciation of “old”. Not that I feel old but I was stuck for a title and “An owd ‘togs blog” just seemed to have a nice ring to it. So there you go….