The Black and White Treatment.

Life is very busy at the moment – lots of distractions – and I am having difficulty keeping focus on progressing my photography. Often at times like this I go over my older stuff with the intent of giving the old stuff a make over – edit them in a different way to produce something new; I quite like messing around in Photoshop and Lightroom so this quite suits me, although some might say that I should just get out and take some different photographs but somehow with everything else (life) going on it is not always that simple. I am off to Normandy in a few weeks and I have great plans for that trip so watch this space. In the meantime I have been going over my old (2011) Northumberland photos and thought that I would share with you some that I have converted to Monochrome (mostly black and white but I do like the toned effect too) within the Photoshop plug-in Nik Silver Efex pro. I really like these – I wouldn’t be showing you otherwise – and they have had lots of positive feedback when I have posted them on 500px, Pinterest, Facebook, Fine Art America and Photo4Me, so I hope that you like them too.

Lobster pots stacked on the quayside.

Lobster pots stacked on the quayside.

Abstract river flow - water taking on a milky form through long exposure.

Abstract river flow – water taking on a milky form through long exposure.

Statue of Field Marshall Viscount Hugh Gough, K.P., GCB, GCSI, PC, who fought many campaigns oversees, now situated at Chillingham Castle, Northumberland.

Statue of Field Marshall Viscount Hugh Gough, K.P., GCB, GCSI, PC, who fought many campaigns oversees, now situated at Chillingham Castle, Northumberland.

Statue of Field Marshall Viscount Hugh Gough, K.P., GCB, GCSI, PC, who fought many campaigns oversees, now situated at Chillingham Castle, Northumberland.

Statue of Field Marshall Viscount Hugh Gough, K.P., GCB, GCSI, PC, who fought many campaigns oversees, now situated at Chillingham Castle, Northumberland.

SONY DSC

Warkworth Castle, Northumberland.

I love Northumberland and will go back there to capture its natural beauty again but converting to black and white or toning the images give the images a different dimension based on tone and contrast, light and shade rather than colour which changes how we view them.

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Hot and cold – Picfair

via Hot and cold – Picfair.

My image “Surfer at Lynmouth” has been chosen by Picfair as one of 25 to receive special attention in their “Hot and Cold” themed presentation and has earned me a Picfair award – I am really excited and what is more, it has attracted a lot of attention as a result. Thank you Picfair.

Picfair.

One of the other things that I have been doing with my time recently is putting my photographs on a site called Picfair. Their tag line is “your pictures are valuable”, so I now have 461 photographs on there and more will follow. It is a stock site but it is not aimed at the out and out commercial buyer; there are many other reasons why people want images such as for personal or company blogs, publications, backgrounds for web pages, promotional materials but not for advertising such as billboards or pop-up adverts, or for incorporating into logos or merchandise. They have one licence for all and are open to amateurs and professionals alike. The way it works is that you join, put up your pictures, say how much you want for the licence which is on a royalty free basis, the buyer pays a bit on top of that and that is Picfairs way of making their money. You can charge anything from £1 to £1000 for the use of your images – your choice (although, there are not many at the higher end – most people charge between £3 and £30)

The site has a friendly feel to it and Benji Lanyado, the Founder and C.E.O. awards “Stars” to the photographs that he likes. These starred photographs gain extra prominence as you can specifically search for “starred” images. My last upload was awarded 17 stars and here are the images that Benji particularly liked:-

Impressionist style photograph of Saint Catherine's Chapel through the mist with Chesil beach in the background.

Impressionist style photograph of Saint Catherine’s Chapel through the mist with Chesil beach in the background.

Old posts standing resolutely strong against the wind and tide under a silver sky.

Old posts standing resolutely strong against the wind and tide under a silver sky.

The Sea out of context.

The Sea out of context.

Waterfall at Watersmeet, near Lynton and Lynmouth, Devon, England.

Waterfall at Watersmeet, near Lynton and Lynmouth, Devon, England.

Exmoor pony grazing in a fiels in Exmoor, England.

Exmoor pony grazing in a fiels in Exmoor, England.

Teasel Sihouette at Sunset.

Teasel Sihouette at Sunset.

Typical street scene in Arles, Provence with an old Restaurant, given a paint effect.

Typical street scene in Arles, Provence with an old Restaurant, given a paint effect.

Bamburgh Castle across the sands of Bamburgh Beach, Northumberland.

Bamburgh Castle across the sands of Bamburgh Beach, Northumberland.

The beautiful island of Eigg, one of the Western isles of Scotland in silhouette. Photograph given watercolor treatment.

The beautiful island of Eigg, one of the Western isles of Scotland in silhouette. Photograph given watercolor treatment.

Eilean Donan Castle in the blue hour Contre-jour after sunset. Originally taken on Fuji Velvia slide film and converted to digital. Seen from the Loch Duich side with Loch Alsh in the distance.

Eilean Donan Castle in the blue hour Contre-jour after sunset. Originally taken on Fuji Velvia slide film and converted to digital. Seen from the Loch Duich side with Loch Alsh in the distance.

Tree lined stream recorded in infra-red in spring time and given a sepia type tone.

Tree lined stream recorded in infra-red in spring time and given a sepia type tone.

Tree-lined pathway in monochrome from infra-red recording. Location - near Bossington, Somerset, England.

Tree-lined pathway in monochrome from infra-red recording. Location – near Bossington, Somerset, England.

Boathouse on Derwentwater, Near Keswick, Lake District national park, Cumbria. Portrait format.

Boathouse on Derwentwater, Near Keswick, Lake District national park, Cumbria. Portrait format.

Boathouse on Derwentwater, Near Keswick, Lake District national park, Cumbria.

Boathouse on Derwentwater, Near Keswick, Lake District national park, Cumbria.

Arthur - a listed building on Goonhilly downs, Cornwall, England. Arthur was built to track the Satellite Telstar and took part in the first live trans-atlantic television transmission.

Arthur – a listed building on Goonhilly downs, Cornwall, England. Arthur was built to track the Satellite Telstar and took part in the first live trans-atlantic television transmission.

Sunflower lit from behind.

Sunflower lit from behind.

Sunflower basking in the sun

Sunflower basking in the sun

These images, and all of my other photographs – many of which were also starred on previous uploads, can be found at:-

https://www.picfair.com/paulcullenphoto

Stock Photography.

I have just passed Quality Control for Alamy and can now post stock photography. I’ll have to start to produce some more now – I have got lots of ideas ( and quite a few photos in my archives that might sell!). Here are the photos that I sent for QC; they are an indication of some the sort of markets that I’ll be targeting, but not all. They are a start:-

Cassis Boats. Ilfracombe Harbour. Lambsy. St. Tropez Marina.

Paris 2013

Paris 2013 by paul2210
Paris 2013, a photo by paul2210 on Flickr.

My wife and I went to Paris in October of 2013. No trip to Paris would be complete without a photograph of Notre Dame Cathedral. The usual view is of the twin towers to the front of the Cathedral but I quite like this view made on a beautifully sunny day. A visit to Paris is thoroughly recommended – I’ll certainly go back given the slightest opportunity.

Natzwiller

Natzwiller by paul2210
Natzwiller, a photo by paul2210 on Flickr.

I love France and have been to the North – Brittany, Normandy and Picardie, the south west – Aquitqaine Cotes de Duras near Bordeaux, the south-east – Provence and finally, the east – Alsace. This photograph was made in Alsace at a place called Natzwiller. The name sounds German and for a time, I think it was. Despite it’s obvious beauty, as illustrated by this photo, Natzwiller was the scene of the only Concentration camps on French soil – named Natzwiller – the nearest village but it is more accurately described as Le Struthof. The concentration camp is a few kilometres from this point – I found that hard to reconcile the contrast of the horrors of Le Struthof with this beautiful vision.

Warkworth

Warkworth by paul2210
Warkworth, a photo by paul2210 on Flickr.

The river Coquet as it runs through Warkworth. This photograph was taken using a Canon 20D which had been converted for Infra-red. The camera was loaned to me (and everyone else in turn) by Lee Frost. I was on one of his courses in Northumberland. The IR camera gives a strange colour cast but I have made this one “Antique” Monochrome using Lightroom 5.