Saturday, 27 February 2010

New Images of Chicago

I have just sent off 19 new images of Chicago to be added to my web site. They should be on it early next week. The weather wasn't brilliant during the day but was pretty good at night so rather more night shots than daytime ones. Here is a selection.

The new set of Boston images (see last blog post) was loaded onto the web site yesterday.

Cloud Gate Sculpture and some of the Chicago buildings behind at night
Chicago skyline and the moon at night
Chicago Steps at night
Navy Pier from Lake Shore Drive
Chicago River Promenade

Friday, 26 February 2010

New Images of Boston

I have just sent 7 new images of Boston, Massachusetts, to Martin of 10th Planet, who maintains my web site. They should appear on the site within the next few days.

Charles River Bridge at Night
Charles River Bridge Reflection at Night
Quincy Market TreesLong Wharf and Snow
State Capitol Building and Snow
USS Constitution, Charlesworth
Quincy Market at Night in Winter

Thursday, 25 February 2010

Lake Light Print Run

Yesterday afternoon I heard that Lake Light was going to be printed this morning so I had an early start to drive the 27 miles across to South Yorkshire Printers in Sheffield for 8.30pm. I was there in good time despite the traffic and then watched the first plate be printed. This was printing 4 pages from the book. Right from the start print quality was pretty good and with a few minor tweaks was even better.

I gave the go ahead and 15 minutes later 1500 copies were finished and in a stack on the floor to await printing the reverse face when the ink had dried. The plan is to print today and tomorrow and Saturday if needed. The cover was also being printed and this looked good too. After printing it will be lacquered to a high gloss before it can be bound.

The binding is done by another company so I'm unlikely to receive copies until the end of next week. I was hoping to have for Wednesday 3rd so that I could take them to my next camera club lecture to Chapel-en-le-Frith Camera Club.

Can't wait to see the final books and start selling them at Focus on Imaging at the NEC.

Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Lake Light to Printers

At long last my new book Lake Light is with the printers in Sheffield. Hope to soon hear when it will be printed. I will go over to check print quality when they start the print run.

It has 89 images, a foreword by Joe Cornish, location map, technical data for all images and an article on using digital cameras for taking black and white landscapes.

Lake Light can be ordered now through my web site. Copies will be shipped next week.

The formal book launch will be at the Focus on Imaging exhibiton at the NEC Birmingham 7th to 10th March. I will be on the Harman Technology / Ilford Photo stand (C2 in Hall 9) doing 4 days of book signing.

Sunday, 21 February 2010

More Snow here in the Peak District

It's snowing again as I look out of the office window. There is about 3 inches everywhere, no wind so it's just coming straight down and not being blown around.

Swapped our 7 year old Toyota RAV 4 for a 3 month old ex-demo Nissan Pathfinder on Wednesday. It has 7 seats so we can now use just 1 car for courses, it is also considerably larger inside so has more space for our exhibition stand stuff for when we do shows. Then Thursday we used it to go to Melbourne, the one just south of Derby rather than the one in Australia, where I gave a lecture. It was snowing as we drove over the Peak District. On the way home all well until about 10 miles north of Ashbourne heading for Buxton, the road was blocked by an accident (the road was covered by snow but underneath was black ice - very slippery). We turned round and returned to Ashbourne for fuel, all garages shut so on to Derby then returned to Ashbourne. Another accident on the A52 had blocked the road since we came through so we sat there for over a half hour (now 1.30 am). Then traffic reports on the sat nav showed the A6 blocked by another accident near Buxton so we decided to try returning through Leek and Macclesfield, which was fine. Just the 4 hours to do a 1.5h journey, arriving home at 3am! The car was rock solid on some very dodgy roads, a good test for the 4 wheel drive. Needless to say I decided to drive into the Buxton Gallery a few hours later rather than walking since I have to get up at 6am if I'm walking to give me time to do my stretches for my bad back and I need more than 2.5h sleep!

It's been trying to snow on and off for several days now but today we have had 3 or 4 inches and the hills look great. It's stopped snowing and it's brightening up.

Don't forget, Focus on Imaging at the NEC Birmingham starts in exactly 2 weeks time - Sunday 7th March. I will be on the Harman Technology stand near the entrance to Hall 9 doing the launch and signing of my new book Lake Light. Hope to see some of you there. Dave Butcher

Monday, 15 February 2010

New Images of New York

I have scanned, tweaked and sent 18 new images of New York to be added to my web site. They should be there in the next few days. In the meantime here is a preview of some of them.
Dave Butcher

Manhattan from Brooklyn Bridge:
Central Park snow and ice:
Woolworth Building at night:
Manhattan and the Manhattan Bridge at Night from Brooklyn:
Manhattan and the Brooklyn Bridge at night from Brooklyn:
Brooklyn Bridge footpath at night:
Flatiron Building and street light:
Chrysler Building and flags at night:
Central Park trees and snow:
Rockefeller Building and tree with lights at night:

Saturday, 13 February 2010

New St Anton Photographs

I have just finished editing 9 new images of St Anton and 1 of Lech. They will be added to my web site next week but you can see them here now.

St Christoph near St Anton:

Mogul skiers below Schindlergrat:

The view from Valluga, the highest point on the St Anton ski area:

The view from Valluga:

The view from Valluga:

The cable car to the top of Valluga:

View near Vallugagrat:

A view of the St Anton ski area:

The Rendl ski area of St Anton:

Lech and the Rufikopf:

The next batch of new images should be New York from January and February this year.

Dave Butcher

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Lake Light Edits

Well, I'm not quite sure how we got there but I've just sent off version 10 of Lake Light to the Designer, Andy. I have seen 4 or 5 versions so I think Andy must have generated a few in-house and not sent them to me.

Mostly this was checking picture captions and plate numbers and the foreword by Joe Cornish. There are 88 images in Lake Light so pretty close to the number in Peak Light (90).

Will have to carefully check the edits on this lot and will be the first time since the first proof that the numbering should be correct. Not long now. Launch date is Sunday 7th March at the Focus on Imaging show at the NEC Birmingham. Getting impatient to have finished and on sale; I've been working on it for so long now.

Had some snow here today. Just a dusting, nothing serious. Walking to Buxton tomorrow for a day in the Gallery in Pavilion Gardens so hope the weather is reasonable for that.

Thursday, 4 February 2010

Catch Up Time

We made it home by 3.30 pm yesterday. It was snowing quite heavily across the Peak District as we came north from Ashbourne. It's all gone now though as it's a wet, grey day in the Peaks and about 7C outside.

Had over 2150 emails in the inbox on our return. Mostly spam but a couple of hundred ones for me to look at, including some orders. Have just cleared the rubbish and am working my way through the ones left.

Had 47 rolls of Ilford FP4 processed by Chelsea Photographic in New York. They did an excellent job for me, including turning it round at no notice within 24 hours. That makes a total of 78 rolls processed and just 22 New York rolls left. Will either process myself or take over to Harman / Ilford for their pro lab to do. Managed to identify all rolls from the notes I took at the time of exposing each image. The city shots are easy but separating dozens of rolls taken at 7 ski areas was challenging at times!

Had some hassle at Denver Airport but all US airports did hand searches of my film when asked so that I could avoid them being x-rayed. In Denver they believed that x-ray machines were no more damaging to films than the radiation received when flying at 36000 feet. I tried to tell them the effect was accumulative so avoiding x-ray machines was beneficial for my films but they didn't seem to appreciate this and searched me, my clothing, my camera gear in the Peli case and everything in my rucsac. It only took about 10 minutes but they made their point! Complete contrast to the last time I went through Denver, it just depends on the individuals concerned.

In the 3 weeks that we were away we had 4 nights and most of 4 days in New York but most pictures were taken on just 2 days which had stunning light, but we did many miles of walking. Most of the time was spent in Colorado with friends Rob and Annie from Boulder, although we didn't stay that many nights in Boulder. We had 7 days at 7different ski areas: Keystone, Vail, Wolf Creek, Crested Butte, Monarch, Winter Park and Copper Mountain. Of these we had 2 days with bad weather (low cloud and snow) - Vail and Wolf Creek. In fact the weather at Wolf Creek gave 54 inches of snow on the slopes in just 3 days. Telluride which was on the itinerary but which we couldn't fit in this time, had 78 inches in the same 3 days! We also had 3 days snowshoeing; around Durango Forest while Durango was snowed in - we couldn't go anywhere else even if we had wanted to!, Rocky Mountain National Park where I took photos from the middle of the ice that covered Mills Lake and finally a return to Brainard Lake in the Indian Peaks Wilderness for shots of the mountains from Red Rocks Lake before we snowshoed up to Long Lake. We also had 3 walks around the Great Sand Dunes National Park, Boulder Flatirons and the Mount Sanitas area outside Boulder. The only day we didn't walk, snowshoe or ski was when we travelled from Durango to Gunnison ready for skiing Crested Butte the following day.

A great time was had by all and lots of photos for the image library. The only downside was the air travel - all the hanging around, hassle and concern that my film could be damaged doesn't make it a very relaxing time for me.

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

JFK Airport - Last Leg

We are in the Virgin lounge at JFK airport waiting for our flight back to the UK.

It was a very grey day in New York today so few photos. Just wandered around looking for shots that worked in dull light and checking out shots for later visits.

Home tomorrow afternoon, hopefully.

Picked up 47 rolls of processed Ilford FP4 today from Chelsea Photo.
From a total of exactly 100 rolls this just leaves 22 for Harman to process on our return.
Dave Butcher

Tuesday, 2 February 2010

Central Park Photos

The day started with dropping off 47 rolls of Ilford FP4 at Chelsea Photo for processing. I have used them before and know them to be an excellent pro lab in New York.
They agreed to do within the day, a much improved service compared to the 6 days with the lab in Boulder. We will pick them up tomorrow morning.

The rest of the day was spent taking photos.

Started with the Chrysler Building. Long lens (150 mm) shots of the art deco top and gargoyles. Then while changing lens a policeman told me to stop using my tripod.
I switched to the wide angle (43 mm) lens and f5.6 gave me a shutter speed of 1/250 or 1/125 second. This let me hand hold the camera.
Found some different angles to those used previously and also repeated some shots since there was a clear blue sky above rather than the grey overcast one om prebious shots.

Then on to Central Park for several hours. Surprisingly, there was a large area of snow enclosed by crowd barriers. Walking around these gave me some wintry views of the buildings at the south end of the park.
There was also ice on some of the branches of the trees. I was moved on from here too, apparently the snow was for a special event on Saturday. There was no snow anywhere else in the park (or New York as far as we could see).

Then down to the ice rink for some shots from the rocks above.
On to The Lake, one of the most photogenic parts of Central Park. Lots of different views with the lake being almost completely frozen solid.
Finally on a bit furthe to the Reservoir and a few reflection shots on the ice and water.
Time was marching on so we turned back as we were meeting Rod, a friend from Ilford (Harman) for dinner.

We walked back along 5th Avenue and shortly after starting down it I stopped to photograph Trump Towers, a shapely building with some good reflections in the glass frontage and Christmas trees and lights on the lower roof areas.
I then spotted the Rockefeller Building and took the tower again through the branches and Christmas lights. It was twilight so may be better than the pitch black night shot I took a couple of weeks ago.

The day yielded 21 rolls of images. Lots of gaps in my picture library have been filled.
That's what I call a good day! To make it even better we went to dinner at the Heartland Brewery in Union Square and the Sumatra Porter was excellent!
Dave Butcher

Monday, 1 February 2010

Fed and Watered

Just back from our evening meal, and very nice it was too.

Now having a nighcap in the hotel bar before turning in for the night.

Tomorrow we take my exposed films in for processing. Hope the lab can turn it round for collection Tuesday.

Planning to spend quite a bit of time in Central Park taking photos. Hope the light is good.
Dave Butcher