Photography by Nik Bond

A weekly photography blog to showcase my hobby.

07.04.13, Week 86: Time Off

Hi everyone,

I’m taking a bit of time off from this blog until I’ve finished my degree. I can’t dedicate the time to writing or to photography at the moment, so I think it’s best to have a short break. I should be back at the end of May or early June though, so watch this space!

Nik.

31.03.13, Week 85: Smoke Between the Trees

Week 85 - 28.03.13

So, after two months without any posts and, more importantly for me, two months without my desktop, I’m back and up to date. I came home from university at the end of last week and spent a good proportion of the weekend attempting to fix my graphics card. Or rather, the fan on my graphics card, as that is all that was wrong with it. After my dad and I taking a nine inch angle grinder (my brother has been borrowing the smaller one) to the fan, the card crashing after running at 104 degrees centigrade, and various attempts at using different wires for power, we settled on screwing a fan to the outside of the card’s heat sink and letting it run a bit hotter than it had been at 75 degrees. Unfortunately, though, I won’t be defeating Handsome Jack in the near future.

My girlfriend and I took a trip to Bath during the week and we stopped off at her Godmother’s house for some tea. Along with her husband, she had been clearing the leaves from the floor of the avenue of trees that used to run up to the manor house that burnt down. As the leaves were all so dry, and to save picking them up, they were simply raked and blown into piles and then burnt. The smoke was blowing through the avenue of trees and shrouding them, leaving some as nothing but faint silhouettes.

This Time Last Year

The moon reflecting on a stretch of Spanish sea: 01.04.12, Week 33: Archive 6.

Metadata

      • Date taken: 28.03.13
      • Aperture: f/5.0
      • Speed: 1/2500 sec
      • ISO: 500
      • Focal length: 24mm

24.03.13, Week 84: Archive 22

Week 84 - 08.09.10

This week has been chaotic to say the least. Deadlines for a variety of things including a dissertation section, an essay, and the lacrosse club’s development portfolio on top of the four hour journey home in a whiteout. Unfortunately, my photography has had to take a backseat yet again which is quite disappointing. Those of you who have read my about page will know that this blog was intended to drive me to take more and better pictures. Whilst it has undoubtedly achieved the latter, I have not been using my camera enough lately. I will endeavour to correct this, so watch this space!

This shot was taken on the way to London on a trip with my girlfriend. The windmill is called Wilton Windmill and is between Wilton and Great Bedwyn in Wiltshire, the county in which I have grown up. I’ve often driven past it and wanted to take a look as it is a beautiful and archaic building, having been built in 1821. As it was a lovely sunny day and we were in no rush to get to London, we stopped off to have a look. The weather is what really makes this picture for me; the light and the sky are just so beautiful.

Apart from the weather, I think the angle of the shot is really attractive. All the pictures I’ve seen of the windmill focus on it in its entirety, rather than taking a slightly different angle. I like the close up on the blades of the windmill and their positioning within the frame. By placing them diagonally, they draw the viewer’s eyes into the centre of the frame and ensure that they take in the whole of the image. I also really like the natural frame that they create in the top left of the shot and how it neatly encompasses the plane and its vapour trail. Obviously, that was entirely deliberate (sausage).

It’s terrifying to think that this was taken at the end of my gap year, just before I went to Manchester to start my degree. My university career will all be over come July when I graduate.

This Time Last Year

The best dog in the world: 25.03.12, Week 32: Hello and Goodbye.

Metadata

      • Date taken: 08.09.10
      • Aperture: f/2.0
      • Speed: 1/8000 sec
      • ISO: 200
      • Focal length: 35mm

17.03.13, Week 83: The View from Apartment 65 (Part Two)

Week 83 - 11.03.13

A few weeks ago, I posted a panorama that I created from pictures I had taken out of my bedroom window. We’ve had another pleasant patch of weather lately, with the interceding period since the first post being characterised by the colour grey. I’ve also had another slow week where I haven’t been out of my apartment much; apparently a social life isn’t compatible with my dissertation. This week, I’ve created another panorama of the same view, just a bit wider than the previous photo. I actually produced about twelve panoramas from this sunset as I also took some shots from the top floor of my building which has a completely different view to the one from my bedroom and the rest of the flat.

I chose this image instead of one of the other panoramas because of the expanse of blue sky in the left of the frame. It really adds to the image because of its contrast to the darkness of the cloud on the right. I also liked the wider perspective in this shot because it makes the cloud dwarf everything in the foreground of the image. As I noted in the previous post of this view, I created a good balance between the dark foreground and the bright sky. I feel that I have also replicated this balance here. The best part of the shot for me, though, is the sun’s highlighting of moisture rising into the cloud in the centre of the frame. The colours and texture of that part of the cloud are really striking and I’m pleased that I managed to capture them.

This Time Last Year

A gatehouse reflected in a puddle: 18.03.12, Week 31: The Gatehouse.

Metadata

      • Date taken: 11.03.13
      • Aperture: f/5.0
      • Speed: 1/2500 sec
      • ISO: 400
      • Focal length: 45mm

10.03.13, Week 82: Archive 21

Week 82 - 20.12.12

Another week, another archive shot, I’m afraid. This one was from the grey December day that I took a friend of mine to Somerset House for an exhibition on Valentino. I’ve posted pictures from the day here and here, so I won’t go through the background all over again.

I found this lamp when we were wondering around the hallways of Somerset House and something about it just grabbed me. The bulbous shape of the shades reminds me of my decanter, a shape that I am particularly fond of in glassware. The shades of the stone of the walls and ceiling, which was actually the underside of a staircase, and the plastered wall appeal to the palette that I like in interiors. My favourite aspect of the image, however, is the shadow play created by the different angles of the walls and the shape of the shades. I really like the variation throughout the frame as it creates a real depth to the image that is otherwise not particularly interesting. It also makes the image considerably warmer than it would be otherwise as the walls aren’t whitewashed by bright light.

This Time Last Year

The Arndale Tower mirrored through a glass wall: 11.03.12, Week 30: Archive 5.

Metadata

      • Date taken: 20.12.12
      • Aperture: f/5.6
      • Speed: 1/50 sec
      • ISO: 640
      • Focal length: 24mm

03.03.13, Week 81: Archive 20

Week 81 - 01.09.12

I took this shot the same night that I took this one, whilst I was on holiday in Spain last year. The image above was shot from the far side of Málaga’s port (point A on that map) and encompasses two of the spectacular buildings that are in the city. On the left is the cathedral (point B), and on the right is the Alcazaba (point C), a palatial fortification built by the Hammudid dynasty in the 11th century. According to Wikipedia, it is the best preserved alcazaba in Spain, a fact which I did not pick up when I went around it a couple of years ago. The structure in the foreground that runs along the far side of the port is a relatively new sheltered walkway that houses a couple of restaurants and is a general recreational area.

I spent quite a long time taking shots of the view as I walked along the far side of the port. It wasn’t until I was nearly at the end of the pedestrianised area that I could get both of the buildings in the frame. I am glad that I took the time to do so, however, as the image definitely benefits from the presence of both features. Although the shot has quite a lot of negative space in it, I think it really benefits from the excessive darkness. The black sky in the top of the frame and its reflection in the foreground frame the parts of the scene that are lit up and exaggerate their presence. I’m a big fan of reflections, as I am sure you will have noticed if you have been following this blog. The reflections in the water really caught my eye as I walked through the port and I’m glad that I have managed to replicate them here.

This Time Last Year

Shadows from a piece of potpourri: 04.03.12, Week 29: Potpourri.

Metadata

      • Date taken: 01.09.12
      • Aperture: f/14
      • Speed: 8.0 sec
      • ISO: 200
      • Focal length: 24mm

24.02.13, Week 80: Archive 19

Week 80 - 10.08.12

In the summer a friend and I went to Hyde Park to watch the Men’s Marathon Swimming event in the Serpentine. I hadn’t been to Hyde Park before, and the place was absolutely packed out with people. I actually had to do the paparazzi-esque action of holding my camera above people’s heads in order to get a shot of the swimmers going past.

My experience of the crowd made me proud to be British that day. A Dutch swimmer fell behind the main pack by an increasing margin throughout the race. It got to the point where the pack would be exiting the bend at the end of the lake when he was entering it, and by the following lap, he was even further behind. However, he was cheered even more loudly by the crowd than the pack was when he went past. It made me think back to my primary school sports days where, in a typically British fashion, we were encouraged to cheer the last person as much as possible to help them finish. It’s a value that’s stuck with me throughout my life, and something which I hold myself to.

As I just stuck my camera over the heads of the people in front of me and pressed the shutter release, I can’t really take much credit for the framing or focus of the shot because I didn’t actually have much control over it. I fiddled with it quite a lot in Lightroom, both rotating and cropping the image until I got it to an angle that I liked. The focus is on the Union Jack, which I luckily captured at almost its full extent, rather than the swimmers or the boats following them. I actually like this focal point as I am particularly fond of my country’s flag, and it reminds the viewer that it was at the London Olympics in 2012. The image might benefit from having shown more of the trees in the background, and less of the crowd in the foreground. However, I think it would detract from the flag being the focal point of the image and is therefore perhaps better left as it is.

This Time Last Year

Reflections in a St. John’s Wood Church’s window: 26.02.12, Week 28: Archive 4.

Metadata

      • Date taken: 10.08.12
      • Aperture: f/5.0
      • Speed: 1/1250 sec
      • ISO: 400
      • Focal length: 24mm
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