Simon Watkinson Talk  4th May 21017

For those who couldn’t attend the talk  by Simon Watkinson last Thursday, I have say that you missed out on a real treat.  This was his third visit  to our club  and he continues to impress. He is a professional who travels all over the world taking groups pf Photographers on photo holidays and also doing some commercial work. He also does tutorial courses for photographers at his home in the Peak District. His talk was on landscape photography entitled “Doing it differently.”

He began by showing some very impressive images from his recent trip to Nepal.  This was merely a taster for what was to come.  He does a lot of panoramas using a Manfrotto  camera mount, which he brought in  to show us.  It enables him to accurately rotate the camera in small increments. He often uses a Telephoto  lens for his landscape work.  He demonstrated his technique by stitching together a panorama of shots (in Lightroom)  that he had taken earlier from a local wood.   It was remarkable how different his thin slice panoramas  can make an image look.  He did emphasise however that apart from a panorama where software is needed, he does not like to do much in the way of post shot manipulation.  His maxim is, “get it right in the camera!” He frequently uses full manual settings on his camera.  He doesn’t really like having the camera doing any thinking for him.  He often uses an exposure meter with invercone on his lightmeter and takes incident light readings to work out a perfect exposure.

A technical discussion followed  on wide angle lenses versus telephotos for landscape work, plus optical considerations such as why an image taken at f8 or f10 seems sharper than one taken at f16 or f22.  He discussed the problems that can arise from wide angle lenses when used for landscape work and explained in some detail the advantages in many circumstances for using a telephoto lens.

After the break he then showed a selection of simply stunning images using the techniques that he had been discussing earlier.  He likes mist particularly in the early morning.  Some of his images taken under these conditions were simply breathtaking.

It was a great evening where everyone who attended  went away having learned something.