I am Rod Wynne-Powell, and this is my way to pass on snippets either of a technical nature, or related to what I am currently doing or hope to be doing in the near future.

A third-person description follows:
Professional photographer, Lightroom and Photoshop Workflow trainer, Consultant, digital image retoucher, author, and tech-editor for Martin Evening's many 'Photoshop for Photographers' books.

For over twenty years, Rod has had a client list of large and small companies, which reads like the ‘who’s who’ of the imaging, advertising and software industries. He has a background in Commercial/Industrial Photography, was Sales Manager for a leading London-based colour laboratory and has trained many digital photographers on a one-to-one basis, in the UK and Europe.
Still a pre-release tester for Adobe in the US, for Photoshop, he is also very much involved in the taking of a wide range of photographs, as can be seen in the galleries.

See his broad range of training and creative services, available NOW. Take advantage of them and ensure an unfair advantage over your competitors…

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Saturday 27 October 2018

London Visit to Wex Photographic

I had decided to try to take a look at the new Canon full-frame mirrorless body to see whether this could aid my photography of birds and motorsports, but although I did get the chance to handle the camera, it had no adaptors for my Canon lenses, which lessened the value of my visit. However, despite the chilly wind the sun was bright so the chance of using the camera I had with me: the 5D MkIII and the 24-70mm with macro, it proved to be ideal to capture some of the new architecture that now crowds London’s skyline. I mean ‘crowds’ as all the new buildings are only partially seen between the gaps of others, the only noticeable exception being the ‘Shard’ which is close to the river. Also, since I was in the East of the City and I had not scheduled to spend the entire day in London, that was not on the current itinerary, so I reckon that is a for a later trip. 
Today was to get a chance to take a look and handle the Canon EOS R, and although I did manage to get some example shots taken, which were then transferred to my CF Card, I did at least get a feel for the controls. I did however come away with one very strong criticism – Why, if you are dropping the CF Card in favour of the now far faster SD variant, why was the opportunity not taken to build in two slots, which most of the current crop of rival cameras have already done? Is that a Bold Canon Statement that this Is Not a Pro Camera; that will come later? The idea behind the three EF Lens Adapter variants was very obviously saying “We want existing Canon Users to buy this body with all your acquired earlier glass, then gradually replace these with the RF variety”, to then lessen the advantage by the non-provision of a second slot – sorry Canon, why provide the competition with such an obvious advantage?
I maybe a voice in the wilderness, but I seriously reckon there should be a Model 1.1 with the second card slot, Sony and Fuji must be rubbing their hands with Glee at this lacuna. Until I take a look at the few shots I took, I cannot be certain that another observation I made is valid, but the image on screen was far cooler in colour temperature versus what I was seeing through the viewfinder, so one of the first checks I intend making is a look at which colour is recorded on the card, if that matches what I saw through the viewfinder then I am slightly less concerned, but since it is possible to alter the JPEGs before say uploading them to the Web or one’s blog, then this may well be a serious concern. To my simplistic view the two screens, despite their differing resolution should be a match for colour. The area I was in although it had supplementary lighting was largely flooded with daylight, and to my eye, the viewfinder was accurate, the flip out screen was quite an amount cooler.
I really need to learn more about this camera, but apart from the above comment I was impressed with the cleanness of the images and they were at High ISO, and the stabilisation was good when I decided to opt for an f/stop of f/11 which forced me to up the ISO, as I wanted to check the greater depth of field, as despite it being daylight the light was not particularly bright.
The flip out screen was very robust and certainly that was a feature I have often wanted for low or high-level shots. Unless Canon rapidly add a second card slot, it looks as if I will have to hang out for the next iteration which is a disappointment as in so many ways this is a body I have been waiting for, since going to Sony was never an option.

Tuesday 23 October 2018

Late Autumn at Woburn Park

The warm sunshine at this time of year is very tempting, as soon this warm spell will  give way to high winds and rain and we will be seeing the portents of Winter, so it is not a difficult decision to make and grab camera gear and head off out — on this occasion to head over to Woburn and the Deer Park. Since I had the Benbo with the 7D Mk II, I was hoping the Staff might let me have some grace over parking, and I was offered an hour’s grace.
            The only disappointment was the deer had had very different plans and did not oblige with a trip to the pond at the entrance, so when my time was up, I drove back to the Car Park, where I chose to pick up the 150-400mm, which I knew I could use handheld, I also had the 24-70mm with its macro option, and now, whereas the 7D MkII was the body which gave me the 1.4 times advantage on the longer lens, I was now using the 5D Mk III so the throw was far less.
My knees at present are weak, so there was no way I was trudging through the woods with a heavy tripod, and I even forsook the monopod in favour of setting higher ISOs on the full frame body, which did give me the option of having more than the long lens in the camera bag.
On my return to the pond I spotted a black swan on the lake near the entrance gate. I did capture some of one’s display of its very striking white wing feathers. What I found rather surprising was how tolerant were the normal white swans were, even when at close quarters. I have often found swans to be quite aggressive towards other birds on the water.
At the pond by the Entrance kiosks there were a pair of Egyptian Geese. This pair were quietly munching at the grass, the female resting rather more than the male, only following when he had moved several goose-lengths distant — not exactly the most energetic of birds!
Upon my second arrival at the pond by the entrance kiosks, The deer had come closer to the pond and soon came to the edge and stepping tentatively into the shallow water. It was almost as if one deer had to go first before others followed.
            I stayed awhile taking shots before the fairly long walk through the woods where I took a few more pictures of some of the leaves and berries that heralded the beginning of the autumn season, and from the profusion of berries, I did wonder whether this year’s Winter was to be harsher than last’s. This afternoon had been very warm, but with a cloudless sky, the evening cooled swiftly and the night was a lot colder.

Saturday 13 October 2018

Digi-Cluster Meeting - West Herts College

Having spent time at Brogborough Lake photographing Windsurfers facing the challenge of a fitful wind with at least the direction of light in my favour I headed back briefly to offload those images, clearing the cards and selecting a very different choice of lenses to drive down first to Harpenden where I would be picking up Product Designer Peter Carr, then almost immediately jump back in the car with the briefest of polite greetings to Sue so she could return to watching a favourite TV programme, and with Peter using his mobile phone to aid his navigation for us to head south through the increasing traffic.
It was my fault that we had no time to drink a cup of tea as I had left it rather late in leaving Brogborough Lake and I needed to download those images to ensure they were safely uploaded and the cards readied for the images I was to be capturing once we had arrived at the College for our Networking event. We timed our arrival with perfect precision, because towards the end of the journey there was only slight drizzle, just before we got to the College Car Park, the heavens opened and it was a deluge! Peter asked whether I had an umbrella and replying positively I got out of the car forgetting that the key was still in the ignition, so the boot was firmly locked, so that mean returning to the front of the car, removing the key from the steering column and then getting the brolly out and giving it to Peter who had just left the protection of the vehicle, I still had to retrieve my camera case and briefcase, and lock up, so really, there was not much point in me sheltering under the brolly, but nevertheless I did so, but I was completely soaked through.
Fortunately it was warm rain and I have a sense of humour, so my spirits were still buoyant, but my shirt was like a flannel and a shade darker than it had been when dry, but there was considerable concern for my wellbeing from staff from I believe Clock and I was soon provided with a towel which went a small way towards soaking up some of the surplus water, and several options were suggested as to how the shirt could be passed through a hand dryer in the toilets, but in fact my body heat and the dry atmosphere sorted things fairly efficiently – so quite an entrance bearing in mind our arrival was later than most! Ultimate irony  – two minutes after our entry, the rain stopped!
I put down all the gear and soon grabbed the camera and set to trying to capture the warm atmosphere in the voluble throng and occasional nobbles of crisps and sips of a drink with which someone kindly plied me; memory defeats me as to whom I owe thanks for that, but if you know who you are, my grateful thanks, it was appreciated. We soon moved from this entrance area into the long room where tables were arranged for us to sit for the presentations and I took the opportunity to get some shots of that informality and was then in a position to capture the introduction and the later presentations which were preceded by a couple of 90-second pitches. The most impressive of the main ones was undoubtedly the ongoing story of SwipeStation, and the participation of Seedrs and an explanation of how that worked. My apologies for a severe lack of information on the various speakers, as at the end of the evening the neckstraps were returned and I did not manage to glean all the names of Sponsors and Speakers from the inserted ticket.
Later food and drink arrived and less formal and often animated conversations ensued and my shooting came to an end. Thanks for a well-organised and really interesting evening, I was hoping that my lawn would have welcomed the rain, but it seemed to have given my home area a complete miss, my shirt earlier had received more than my garden!

Friday 12 October 2018

Briefest of Brogborough Lake Visits

In Marston Moretaine the wind was reasonably strong, so despite only having a short window of time to pay a visit, I decided on a swift visit to see whether the slight and fitful breeze might just tempt a few sailors onto the lake. On my arrival I found just one sail on the horizon, as the wind direction meant they would heading backward and forth at a narrow angle towards the launching area, which favoured me from a photographic standpoint, so even though a single sail was not what I was hoping the chances of others venturing out was good, as I could see others making their preparations.
I decided that it was worth my taking a chance and setting up the tripod on the bank, close to the water such that there was a good likelihood they would often be heading almost head-on with reasonable side lighting, but that rather depended upon how much sunshine I might have and though when I arrived there was some, clouds certainly put that somewhat out of the question for most of the time.
When the sun caught the distant trees this did provide some colour as can be seen in the shot that heads this narrative. In conversation with a couple of the sailors I did reckon there could be some jumps if I was lucky but it would be difficult as it really need more wind, and on several occasions it would look promising only to deceive by disappearing in the very next instant!
Were it easy, where would be the challenge? I think at the height of the time I was there I think there may have been half a dozen on the water, and possibly had I been able to stay longer I might have taken a few more exciting images, but my time certainly was not wasted as I enjoyed chatting with some of those who had come along, and capturing a jump or two considering both the conditions and how brief was my visit; it was worth the visit.

Wednesday 10 October 2018

Sunny Brogborough Lake – Only Light Wind!

Warmth and Sunshine Late in the year is still tempting even though the wind was light and somewhat fitful. When I arrived lakeside there was only one man on the water, so I wandered into the Clubhouse to see who else was around, rather than immediately ready my camera and Benbo Tripod, but I need not have been concerned; the temptation for the windsurfers to grab some of this autumn warmth on the lake, when the sun was still warm and the sky a clear but pale blue, was not going to be missed despite there being no more than a light zephyr to ruffle the water’s surface.
I set up the 7D MkII with the Sigma 150-600mm lens and originally headed very much to the left to put the sun as behind me as I could, but the vegetation was too restrictive, so I made for the jetty instead. Though not the steadiest of platforms the angle of view was much wider. There were only a mere handful on the water when at full strength, so the shots are more repetitive than for most visits I make, but I never  baulk at keeping my hand and eye in, but I do not think that these were my best shots, due to my selection of too wide an aperture and too low an ISO speed, and perhaps I might have been better turning off the stabilisation, but hindsight is always so much clearer!
Sam Barnes certainly featured strongly as I was trying to capture him when aloft on his hydrofoil-equipped board. It was however a very pleasant way to spend the afternoon and keep my hand in.

Fruitless Wait for Greylag Overflight

Due to the weight of my Benbo tripod, I drove along Station Road to be opposite the Kissing gate entrance to the Marston Vale Forest Centre.
I have been using the dusk to await the evening departure of the Greylag Geese from Stewartby Lake to their nighttime resting place, but their route is not entirely predictable, governed by the wind direction and the appearance or not, of the sun. On this occasion the afternoon and early evening was cloudy, with the occasional break to a misty glow. Quite early on a small group of birds came across, but I was unsure due to them flying at such a distance and away from me, I could not be sure whether they were Canada Geese or Greylag.
Later sadly it turned out to be Canada Geese, and they decided on the worst direction possible in relation to where I was stationed as not only were they distant, and their formation untidy, the background was of power pylons and trees, and this came way into my wait and was extremely scrappy and nary a single image was worth salvaging!
Up till that time, and beyond, I captured the fading colours of autumn brambles and blackberries, a small flying insect, and some of the cloud formations, so not entirely wasted time, but no Geese in Vee Formation!

Thursday 4 October 2018

An Ampthill Park Visit

I wondered whether the small pond in Ampthill Park might hold some interest, so I parked the car and grabbed  the EOS 5D MkIII with the 24-70mm lens and before I even entered spotted a squirrel and thought it seemed reasonably bold, but found that had I chosen a longer lens then my distance would have been fine, but on moving closer the animal decided that was a step too far! He took to the higher branches of the nearby tree, and was soon hidden by the foliage, or certainly at least my eyes!
I had better luck with another a short way further, but if squirrels were to be the subject I would need to choose something longer from the car, and on this occasion, it did not hold much interest. I ended up capturing a few shots by the banks of the small pond which I believe is known as Westminster Pond, though why I have no idea. There was a lone angler there, but I soon learned he was actually packing up to leave after apparently a successful morning.
I did find that there were several very bleached dead trees set against the greener living neighbours, but the grass surrounding was still closer to hay in colour, but the sky was a brilliant and clear blue, fading somewhat in the distance. When I first arrived there were a few dogwalkers, but within a short while, it would seem the call had gone out for every dog owner in Bedfordshire to head for the park; almost every car that now drew up was disgorging at least one dog, but many with two or more. I suppose it was lunchtime, but I still found the numbers to be extraordinarily high considering it was a weekday.
I did more walking than picture-taking, which had not been my intention, but it gave me an idea as to what was happening in the park, I was very surprised at the abundance of Chestnuts, and the trees had yet to take on the colours of autumn, it was also pleasantly warm. In walking through the woods to reach the pond I came across a vast vent for the train tunnel that runs beneath, but I was surprised that it had no sign to suggest its purpose or give its date, though I knew it for what it was, and whilst I walked nearby was treated to the sounds of a passing train in confirmation, had I needed one.
I had a brief set of images to remind me of a warm early October afternoon walk, but nothing spectacular.