Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3: Blog https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog en-us (C) Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3 [email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) Tue, 11 Oct 2022 12:23:00 GMT Tue, 11 Oct 2022 12:23:00 GMT https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/img/s/v-12/u10997816-o305701934-50.jpg Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3: Blog https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog 120 80 Easy Photography? https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/7/easy-photography I was stood in a shop the other day, looking at the pictures they had for sale in there.  Some were paintings, some craft, and some photography.  The photographs were pleasing images of the Lincolnshire wolds - woodlands, landscapes, and also beach scenes.

A lady stood next to me, humphed slightly, and announced in fairly loud tones, that the photographs were easy - anyone could take them, and she didn’t see quite why they were even for sale, never mind at the price asked.  

Part of me wanted to get involved in a conversation, but in the end, she walked away, and I continued to stand and stare, and wondered why people think photography is so easy.

Part of the issue is the preponderance of images that are available on the internet, and on Facebook - mostly I see very poor ones (I’ve talked about this before) - but mainly it’s the idea, or assumption that the creation of a good photograph is easy, and takes little or no skill to create, but merely the good luck to be there at the right time.  People assume that the glass and body of the camera has all the cleverness built in, and tend not to think that actual talent is needed to make an image the way it is.  They think that anyone who can see, with or without glasses, can make the same picture.

The assumption is that photographs can be made without the interference of vision, craft, dedication, repetition or talent of the photographer.

People think that because they own a camera, they are photographers.  It’s surely the same principle of - “I bought a new oven, therefore I am a chef”.  I see it all the time, the new camera owners who instantly think they can make money from their ‘art’.    They don’t need to learn all the  nuances of photography - they can put the camera on the green square - full auto, and wonderful pictures will spill out - which they can then overprocess (because they don’t know when to stop, and after all, a great coloured filter will really enhance the image)….

Did they really think that Ansel Adams got great images of Yosemite every time he got his camera out?  Did they really think that Edward Weston’s Pepper number 30 came first time….. no - the clue is in the title…. Pepper number 30 - which means that there were at least 29 others that came before that… and who knows how many afterwards.  It means that Weston at least thought that number 30 was the best at that time.

So when I see images on line with wails from photographers who say, I shot this and no-one has commented… but when I do something different people do….. then I say - there might be a reason.  Maybe your talent doesn’t lie in that direction, and maybe you go back to what you are good at.  Or maybe the shot, though competent, has no soul.

A portrait of a model sat on a wall, can be just that, a person sat on a wall.  There’s no story, no soul, no romance….. NO INTENT.

I’ve always found that planned shoots, with a visualised end are successful.  Those times when I wander out with no idea what to do, usually result in a lot of deleted images (but hey, I had the day out and enjoyed company maybe, or just the good weather).

Ansel Adams reckoned that your first 10,000 pictures are just practice, and you get better after that…..  so I’d better get the camera out again……  

Enjoy your shooting


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/7/easy-photography Wed, 11 Jul 2018 12:29:16 GMT
Photo Impressionism Part 2 https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/4/photo-impressionism-part-2

In my last blog post, I talked about my re-discovery of multiple exposure images.

Since then, I’ve worked on a good number of new photographs using this style, and a refined viewpoint.  I’m also starting to fully understand what works and what doesn’t.

My starting point was the artist James Abbott McNeill Whistler, and his impressionistic painting “Sea and Rain” – The dreamy effect of the lone man, walking along a foggy beach was remincent of views I see fairly regularly along the East Coast of England. It was paintings similar to this that encouraged me on my way to try and re-create photographically this style of art.

There is a book that I’m keen to get a copy of – it’s entitled “The Lens of Impressionism: Photography and Painting Along the Normandy Coast, 1850-1874″ and includes the beautiful mid-19th century photography of Gustave Le Gray, Henri Le Secq, and others.  The Normandy Coast is where Whistler spent time painting, and it is also the time when painters and photographers were trying to capture motion.  Whistler was trying to move away from conventional art, and experimenting with a softer style.

In the time following the invention of photography, there was controversy about whether art could be photographic, or whether photographs were merely recording a scene.  I would say that the photograph of the French Fleet, Cherbourg, taken by Gustave Le Gray in 1858, shows great artistic quality.

Screenshot 2018-04-25 10.04.32

So photography became the ‘new painting’. Did photography influence the painters, or did the painters influence the photography…….?  I don’t know the answer..

A trip to the Science and Media Museum in Bradford revealed images by Frank Eugene (whom I remember from my college days) who scratched his negatives, to give a softer feel.  As far as I know, no-one before him had tried this, and even the ‘purists’ of the day were said to admire his work.

Screenshot 2018-04-25 09.48.41

Nude Man by Frank Eugene

Eugene was one of the founding members of “The Linked Ring” – Also known as “The Brotherhood of the Ring”, a photographic society created to propose and defend that photography was just as much an art as it was a science.

You can access the Linked Ring exhibition catalogues HERE (It can take a while to load even with a fast internet connection, so be careful) – Sadly the photographs themselves are not reproduced, but you can access all the Salon members, and search for their photography.  You can also see many adverts for the various processing labs, and cameras that were available in 1903.

I did try searching for some of the images in the catalogue but without success.

So – to go back to the start, you can find more of my impressionistic images on Flickr, by checking the link on the right hand side of the blog, I do hope you enjoy them.

More to come on this topic.

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/4/photo-impressionism-part-2 Thu, 26 Apr 2018 15:37:56 GMT
Photo Impressionism Part 1 https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/4/photo-impressionism-part-1 About six or so months ago, I rediscovered multiple exposure photography.

A good number of years ago, I was taking the ocassional multi exposure image, and putting them together in post production.  Once I got a Canon that could do them in-camera, I added a few more.  Time ticked on, and I was working for clients, and I didn't have much time to make images for myself, and the experiment got put on the back burner....

Then towards the end of 2017, I was admiring the work of a Candadian photographer who was creating very impressionistic photographs using multi exposures.  He was not doing them in camera, as each image he created was using upwards of 30 exposures.  He said he'd been influenced by a photographer called Freeman Patterson - and after a short time, I was able to get hold of a book Freeman had written, called Photo Impressionism, and the Subjective Image.

Whilst the publication is quite an old one, and refers entirely to shooting with film, the actual process was easily translated into the digital world.  He talked a lot about shooting images that only gave an impression of the whole, and in the use of shapes and lines, focused entirely on texture, and the nature of the surfaces.

Absorbed in the book, and tracing other photographers who were working the same way - I started to look at how these fascinating images were actually created.

It involved a lot of research, and tracking down different methods of working within Photoshop.  Eventually though, I was able to work out how to align layers of images, and how to blend them together to give the kind of result I was looking for.

Once I fully understand how the layer stacking affects the final images, I'll write a full blog piece.  In the meantime I'm looking at shooting all sorts of things, and seeing what works and what doesn't.


This is one of the first images I made using this multi shot technique. It uses around 40 images - stacked and blended to give the impression of the tree in front of a building.  I'm working on refining the technique, and this next image is one of the town of Louth in Lincolnshire.  It's the indoor market hall tower clock, on a busy Maundy Thursday, and a shot I shall try again on an even busier market day.  A mere 17 images this time....


The more images used, the finer the final image becomes, so somewhere in between there must be an optimum number of pictures to use.   I tried one larger image with nearly 70 images, but it did not seem to be so successful.   I have seen one photographer use this technique though with over 200 layers.   I can't imagine how big the final file would be.

I have uploaded a number of images onto my Flickr page (see the link to the right of the blog), and more are on my website


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/4/photo-impressionism-part-1 Thu, 26 Apr 2018 15:36:39 GMT
Louth clock tower https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/3/louth-clock-tower

Louth town centre

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/3/louth-clock-tower Thu, 29 Mar 2018 18:29:09 GMT
Lincoln Arboretum https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/3/lincoln-arboretum

The Fountain - In the Round

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) exposure fountain in lincoln multi round the https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/3/lincoln-arboretum Thu, 15 Mar 2018 09:20:42 GMT
On Being too Easily Pleased https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/2/On-Being-too-Easily-Pleased When I lived over in Cheshire, in fact about 16 miles out of Manchester, I was not too far from Lyme Park.  A National Trust estate famed mostly for the house, and the large herds of red and fallow deer that roam free on the estate – as well as its starring role in Pride and Prejudice.

There’s a tree – I’m not sure what kind, (maybe a Maple?) but it’s a great shape.  Every time I went over there, I photographed it.  From all angles, and at all times of day – sunrise, sunset, bad weather, good weather.  Different cameras, different light, different viewpoints.

While in the midst of shooting this tree (again) during the Red Deer rut, a cyclist stopped next to me.  He gets off his bike, looks at all the gear I have spread around (I was shooting deer really don’t forget), gets out his little pocket camera – takes one shot, and rides away – with me staring after him,

I watch him go, and I think that I’ve been looking at, and shooting this tree over the years.  He’s taken one shot, and I think he’s probably happy with it.  I wonder if he’s happier with that one photo, than I’ve been after 2 years of messing…….  I’d love to know.

Here’s my version of “That Tree”….

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) deer rut derbyshire landscape lyme park manchester peak district trees wild places https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/2/On-Being-too-Easily-Pleased Wed, 28 Feb 2018 23:00:02 GMT
What other People Think ! https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/2/What-other-People-Think There are photos you take and love, and will always love, and there are photos you take that you love and you can’t understand why no-one else does – and then there are the photos you hate, and would delete because, you have assumed that because you don’t like them, no one else will.

The photograph below, I took last year using a 10 stop filter.  I had one, and hadn’t used it for a long long time.  Mostly I forgot I even owned it.  Then towards the end of 2017 I went to an RPS day in Nottingham, and one of the speakers gave a talk about the images you could achieve with long exposures in the daytime.  I went home, got the filter out and set off to see what I could do.

I went out with some friends, and we shot all sorts of things, but overall I wasn’t very happy about any of the images I got.  On the other hand, I wasn’t terribly sure just what it was I was really looking for.

A few other people said they liked the shot, but I just couldn’t see it.

Later – I was reading a book by celebrated photographer Jay Maisel.  In it – he talked about a photograph of his own that he had taken and didn’t like.

He discussed it with a friend of his and the conversation went something like this

He said “I love that shot”

I said “I hate you, I’d just decided to eliminate it”

“Why would you do that?”

“Because it isn’t what I had in mind when I shot it”

He said “But I’m not hampered by your history and intentions. I love that shot”

What he was seeing was an end result with no concept of what Jay had set out to achieve, and so came at it from a completely fresh perspective.

We need to think of our image making the same way – just because somthing doesn’t fit our immediate ‘wants’ doesn’t mean to say it’s a bad image.

I enter the British Photographic Exhibitions,  and other photography competitions, but in the end analysis, who am I really trying to please?  Me or a remote judge?  The answer is ME, and if the judge likes it to, then that’s a bonus.

Take photographs, enjoy being outside, or inside.  Enjoy the solitude that image making can give you – enjoy the companionship too.  Then, listen to what other people say about your images before you throw them in the bin…..

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/2/What-other-People-Think Thu, 15 Feb 2018 02:01:32 GMT
Double Exposures ! https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/2/Double-Exposures There’s an old adage that you never get a second chance to make a first impression.  This runs true in all sorts of ways.  We’ve all made mistakes with people, at job interviews, with good friends, and sometimes you get the chance to go back and fix your mistakes – but not always.

I think it’s similar to when you make photographs – but you do usually have two chances.  Once when you take it, and once when you edit it.  There’s also the time when you take something, bring it home, and surprise even yourself.  You haven’t seen what you’ve got at the time you took it.  Whether it be because you didn’t look at the image on the back of the camera, or because you just didn’t  ‘see’ it.

So the second chance comes into play.  You didn’t just randomly delete it whilst you were out (NEVER delete anything whilst you’re out!), and now you can edit.

When I took the shot below – I was playing with the double exposure function of the camera… We were in a shopping centre, and security was popping around – you all know what it’s like – I’m on private property doing something that security doesn’t like or allow – anyway, so I was sneaking photographs.  Camera low down – and just shooting what ever took my fancy.

When I got home, I had this….

Unlooked for and unplanned.  I had no idea what I had.

Most of what I took I deleted, but this is the one I liked the best.  Keep shooting.

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) art camera double exposure experiment fuji fuji x-t2 making images mulit shot photography photoshop photoshop cc special effects https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/2/Double-Exposures Thu, 01 Feb 2018 06:24:06 GMT
To Like or Not to Like, that is the question.. https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/1/To-Like-or-Not-to-Like-that-is-the-question

Every now and again someone will ask me “where did you take that picture?”  It’s usually easy for me to tell them,  as I can remember most locations.  However, sometimes I’m asked “WHY did you take that picture?”

The image above generated this second question.  It was taken on the beach, close to West Kirby, and the chap had been wind surfing.  The dog had been bounding around on the beach, and this was the greeting the owner got when he sat down.  I was just taken by the moment shared between man and dog.

What’s interesting, is that the next person to look at this shot might say that it doesn’t do anything for them.  They may not like the composition, or the colours, or the expression….

This is the point – there is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way – it’s all to do with how the viewer has been educated by books, art, and photography.  It’s about how they have been ‘judged’ in the past on their own work.  It is also to do with how much influence an individual has had in their photographic journey.

If you are constantly told that the photographic rules have to be followed, and that deviation means it’s wrong – then it’s possible that the photographer will not be as creative.

You need to know the basic rules, yes, but you also need to be aware that it is OK to break them when YOU want to.

Your own views will be constantly changing, provided you are open to change. And the truth of the matter is that you have only one person to please that really matters……. YOURSELF.


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) animals art beach camera competitions dog grab shot judging man photography sea windsurfing https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/1/To-Like-or-Not-to-Like-that-is-the-question Sat, 20 Jan 2018 03:28:44 GMT
Never Go Back ! https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/1/Never-Go-Back I was on my way to a job a couple of years ago – fairly locally.  I had a deadline to be with the client to photograph a presentation, and didn’t really have time to stop on the way.

Driving past, I saw this boat – moored up, and I thought, that’s great – I’ll go back an shoot it on the way home, or maybe another day.

The voices in my head, that I’ve talked about before, and said you should listen to – shouted at me “do it now”.  I did, I stopped the car, got out, and took this one image.

When I was finished – I drove home the same way, back to see the boat again.  There was no boat any more.  It had gone.  No longer any photo for me to take.

So, I reiterate….. “Never Go Back”… shoot it now.  When and if you do go back it won’t be the same.  It can never be exactly the same.  The weather will change, the light will change.  The thing you want to shoot may not be there any  more.  It might be better, or worse, but never the same.

I always tell people to keep going back to the same location – over and over – to see it in different lights, moods, and seasons.  You will have a different attitude, and a different mood.  You will try different viewpoints.

Always though, shoot first, and ask questions later……

Enjoy your photography…..


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) boat camera competitions docks humour light photography photoshop photoshop cc planing ship thoughts work https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2018/1/Never-Go-Back Fri, 12 Jan 2018 05:33:24 GMT
Lightwaves – Salford Quays – Humans Being Digital https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/12/Lightwaves-Salford-Quays-Humans-Being-Digital On Friday – December 15th, four of us went to Salford Quays, to attend Lightwaves, on Salford Quays, hosted by Quays Culture.

We were able to meet with the Creative Director, Lucy Dusgate, and talk to her about this years show. (Image by Keith Balcombe)

We discussed the latest commission “I forgot to say”……

International novelist, University of Salford Chancellor and Scotland’s national poet, Jackie Kay has produced a brand new, large-scale commission neon word sign, which spans 15 metres in length across the Plaza outside The Lowry.  Jackie Kay was invited to choose a sentence that for her sums up this year.  The neon (LED) word art spells out ‘I Forgot To Say,’ with the latter, ‘To Say’, illuminating and increasing in intensity and colour when audiences leave their messages..…..  In response to the messages left, Jackie Kay will produce a brand new poem in early 2018.

You can find information about this poem by clicking HERE

Planning for these events, starts at least 18 months in advance, and the build can take up to six months.  The exhibits have to be weather proof, and be able to withstand winds up to 45mph, as it can be pretty windy on the Quays.

Lucy, who works part time for Quays Culture, has a lot of support from both full, and part time staff – one of whom deals just with all the administration.

We asked Lucy about the selection of artists to display their work on the Quays.  She explained that she keeps an eye on the artistic processes, and when she sees work that she thinks will fit, she will approach the artist directly.  She is also aware of upcoming emerging UK talent, and will encourage those to apply to have their work displayed.

This year, the Danish artist Tom Dekyzere is displaying some of his work.  You can find more information about Tom by clicking HERE

His installation on the Quays, a dynamic waterside sculpture will translate soundwaves from beneath the River Irwell into lightwaves.

Tom Dekyvere explores the deeper layers of reality and mind. Just as the alchemists of former times probing for unexpected connections, in search of the boundaries between nature and technology, between man and robot, between dead and living matter.

With over 400,000 people attending the Quays last winter – Lucy hopes that this will be exceeded this year.

The other section of the display is entitled “Humans Being Digital”, an exhibition which ends in February 2018.  Thom Kubli brings his piece Black Hole Horizon – which illustrates sound in the form of bubbles.

This is what Thom’s website has to say about the installation

“What kind of relations exists between oscillating air, black holes and soap bubbles? What effect does the sound of horns have on the human psyche and why is it present in various creation myths? What impact does gravity have on our collective consciousness? Where do spectacle and contemplation meet?

The installation Black Hole Horizon is a cosmological experimental setup, a meditation about a spectacular machine that transforms sound into three-dimensional objects and that keeps the space in steady transformation.

The nucleus of Black Hole Horizon is the development of an instrument that is operated by compressed air and that resembles a ship’s horn. With the sounding of each tone, a huge soap bubble emerges from the horn. It grows while the tone sounds, peels off the horn, lingers through the exhibition space and finally bursts at an erratic position within the room.”

Heart, Brain and Lungs by Pascal Haudressy are screen-based pieces that encourage you to think about your own bodies…

Finally, Nye Thompson uses CCTV footage to create a curious environment that asks questions about technology and privacy, contributing a sense of anxiety to an exhibition of many emotions.

humansbeingdigital artists: U_Joo and Limhee Young; Max Dovey; Thom Kubli; Nye Thompson; Thomson and Craighead; Mary Maggic; Mango Chijo Tree and The Jayder; Pascal Haudressy; Libby Heaney and Felix Luque Sanchez.

If you get a chance to visit, entry is free.

Lightwaves ends on December 17th, and Humans Being Digital Ends February 2018.


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) "salford quays" art black hole horizon celebrities jackie kay light installation lightpainting lightwaves lucy dusgate modern art nye thompson pascal haudressy photography press and pr river irwell salford thom kubli tom dekyzere trafford https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/12/Lightwaves-Salford-Quays-Humans-Being-Digital Sun, 17 Dec 2017 03:21:51 GMT
Seals at Donna Nook https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/11/Seals-at-Donna-Nook

It’s pupping time at Donna Nook this month, and next – and it’s always a time of great excitement for both photographers and everyone else.

What some people forget is that these seals are wild animals, and despite how cute the pups look, they are capable of inflicting a nasty bite.  The mothers, over protective, and dominant, can move faster than a person can run – and today, even from the other side of a well made fence, a female growled and plunged at us just for passing.  We were glad we were on the other side of it.

The grey seal pups weigh about 14kg at birth and have soft white fur. They remain on land where they suck from their mother for 18 – 21 days. A female’s milk contains up to 60% fat, so pups grow very quickly, gaining about 2kg in weight each day. This weight gain consists mainly of a layer of blubber below their skin, which is vital insulation when they go to sea. During the pupping season, male grey seals also come ashore to mate.
The largest males, usually more than 10 years old, compete for a position within groups of breeding females. Occasionally males fight, and may sustain deep scars on their necks as a result.
The fence at Donna Nook, at the foot of the sand dunes reduces disturbance to the seals, and also ensures the safety of visitors.

For your own safety and to reduce disturbance to the seals, please follow these guidelines:

  • Stay within the viewing area behind the fence
  • Strictly observe all red flag and other bombing range warnings
  • Don’t get too close to the seals
  • Never feed or pet the seals
  • No unaccompanied children
  • No dogs

Photographers have been seen out on the beach at the weekends, when the range is closed.  Sadly, all this leads to is an encouragement of others (with no fieldcraft or expertise) to join them out there.

Great pictures can be got from the fence line – there is no need to travel further out, and disturb breeding animals.  If a mother seal thinks her pup does not smell right, she will abandon it, and it will die.  Please keep to the designated paths.

The seals, and the Wildlife Trust will love you for it….


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/11/Seals-at-Donna-Nook Thu, 09 Nov 2017 12:20:41 GMT
Photographic Skills https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/10/Photographic-Skills For a while now, I’ve been thinking about what we, as photographers, need to be doing to enhance our skill-sets.

We all need to be able to work the controls on our cameras, even in the dark, it should be second nature to change an ISO, or an F stop, or a shutter speed without even having to think how to do it – and the only way to achieve this is to practice.

We also need to know how to ‘see’ a photograph before we even press the shutter button, and it’s these skills that can separate the terrific, from the merely competent.

With the advent of new digital cameras, it’s actually quite hard to make a really bad exposure.  Even harder these days to achieve an out of focus image.  Cameras are very clever these days, and have built in exposure settings, and shake reduction in either the camera body, or lens.

However, on top of all these things, I think that photographers need another set of skills outside that of just ‘taking’ an image.

1. Computer Literacy – software is the mainstay of the post image taking process.  We need to be able to email images, to resize them, to compress them, and send them to storage sites such as Dropbox.  To do that, we need to be able to type, and express ourselves in a clear and concise manner.

2. We need to be able to competently edit, and select images.  These days, we don’t go out and shoot a roll or two of film.  We go out and come back sometimes with hundreds, maybe thousands, of images.  We need to be able to select which are the best ones, and the ones that our ‘client’ will like, and not just ones that are our own personal favourites.  We need to be clear that the sharpest images, are not always the best ones compositionally, and conversely the best composed ones, won’t always be the sharpest – we need to be able to make that distinction and choose wisely.

3. We need to be aware of art history, and photographic history.  If you are asked who your favourite photographer is – it’s not just going to be the chap down the  road who takes amazing bird photographs – he might be the one impressing you at the moment, but who in history influences the images you take?    Art and photography are inching closer and closer together, and soon, you will have a hard job telling the difference.

Melbourne Photographer Bill Gekas photographs his daughter in the style of all the old Masters.  Take a look here


Google for photographic images of ‘Girl with a Pearl Earring’ by Vermeer, and see what others are up to.

you need to understand art now, to understand photography.

4. The art of conversation – There are times when you need permission to shoot.  Either a person, or a place.  The need for access can sometimes be smoothed over by a polite conversation with owners, or guardians.  After photographers have trespassed on land, you can’t blame the owners for being angry at finding ‘yet another’ on their property.  Go in first, ask the questions – I think you’ll be surprised how forthcoming people will be, just for asking.

5. And lastly – filing and organisation – there is no point in having the worlds greatest image if you can’t find it on  your hard drive.  So, keep your drives tidy, split your images into sections or groups, back them up externally, and don’t rely on your website either – if your provider goes out of business – you could be left high and dry with no images.

If you use Lightroom, avail yourself of the catalogue and make sure your images are correctly sorted, tagged, and keyworded.  Sure, it might take you a week (or more) of hard work, if you’ve not started yet, but in the long run I think you’ll be pleased you did.

For example – I sold an image at a craft fair 5 years ago – it was mounted but not framed.  The client decided to have it reframed, and the picture framer damaged the print.  He contacted me, and asked if I could supply a new one, so that he didn’t have to tell his client; and because I’d got a good catalogue, I was able, within an hour, to send him a file, so he could get it printed again.  Job done.

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) "photo sharing" art art history books business cameras computer literacy content dslr editing feedback film fun google ideas internet lightroom literature marketing photography photoshop storage technology thoughts training web work writing https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/10/Photographic-Skills Sun, 29 Oct 2017 09:46:04 GMT
A Trip to the Circus – and the Fuji X-T2 – Impressive Performances https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/9/A-Trip-to-the-Circus-and-the-Fuji-X-T2-Impressive-Performances I was pleased to get some tickets this week for Russell’s International Circus – and even more pleased that I was allowed to photograph the entire show, without having to remain in my seat! – I decided to take the Fuji X-T2 and a couple of their impressive lens.  I chose the 50-140 f2.8, and the mega sharp 23mm F2 – I knew that the light levels were going to be low, so I went for the fastest zoom, and my fastest, widest prime.

Using auto ISO, and shutter priority, and the widest aperture, I let the camera do the heavy work – whilst I concentrated on the action.

Having shot with the X-T2 for a few months now, I’ve been impressed with just how well it performs under low light conditions.

The ISO ranged from 12,800 down to 200, and although at the higher end (it was the dark blue lights) the images were a tad grainy, it was an easy fix in Lightroom.  The lighting for a camera, was probably some of the worst I’ve experienced outside a theatre, but the Fuji dealt with it well.  The images are excellent and I loved what the camera could do.

I’m very impressed with how well the X-T2 handles noise at ISO 12,800 – the colour holds well, and for the future, I’m going to have no qualms about racking up the ISO to compensate for the low light.

Take a look at a sample of the images from the night……


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) circus clowns comedy danger dressing up dslr entertainment excitement fuji hoops juggling photography rings russell's international circus trapeze https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/9/A-Trip-to-the-Circus-and-the-Fuji-X-T2-Impressive-Performances Thu, 21 Sep 2017 03:40:45 GMT
The Wedding Photographer https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/9/The-Wedding-Photographer I was reading an article the other day on Facebook – the discussion mostly revolved  around the giving away of images, and the problems surrounding professional photographers whose income was being somewhat eroded by this same action.

It started by someone saying they’d just got a DSLR, and had been asked to shoot a wedding, and could anyone offer any advice.  The resounding advice initially was “don’t do it” and “leave it to the professionals”, and “maybe get someone to take you on as a second shooter” ……. the response was outstandingly negative towards professional photographers, with remarks such as “anyone can shoot a wedding”.  I have to confess, I left the conversation feeling somewhat irritated.

Why is it, that beginner photographers, and some amateurs feel that it’s acceptable to take mediocre photographs at a wedding, and feel that their images are going to be so much better than a professional photographers?

I’m the first to admit that there are amateurs out there, who are very good indeed, and would produce stunning images for their clients – but there are others who are just NOT good enough, and who won’t admit it.  More irritatingly still, these are generally the people who are arrogant enough to think that the professional photographer with their ‘big cameras’ are not going to be as good as they are.  After the conversation had insulted Nikon / Canon etc, they turned on the professional photographers, and had a go at them – saying that it wasn’t fair that they charged so much……

I’d like them to think of it this way .. If the electrics fail in your house – are you going to nip down the road and ask the neighbour who has a few tools (which might be better than yours), but has no experience to come and fix them?  Are you going to ask someone to come and sort your plumbing out just because they’ve just bought a new wrench?  I didn’t think so.  So why should employing a photographer be any different?

I’d also like to bet that the inexperienced photographer also does not carry any liability insurance, or maybe not carry any insurance at all…..

Expensive yes, but then so is the electrician, or plumber.  I understand that if the photographer gets it wrong, there is little likelihood of a loss of life (unless it is the photographer of course) – but then again, it’s a day that is not going to be repeated – a day that carries much significance, with these being the only memories.  It’s great to get the shots from the guests, but most people also want the romance, and the drama of the day, which an inexperienced photographer is not going to always get.

What is it about photography that makes people think they can do anything, and charge for it?

I used to teach basic camera skills – the first question I used to be asked would be “how do I get the best out of this camera?, and how can I make sure that my photography is going to be the best it can be?

These days – the people come, with their shiny new DSLR’s saying “how can I make money from my photographs?”  The answer should be – you can’t, till you learn how to use it properly.

It might be tiresome to hire someone, it might be tiresome to think that photographers actually charge money for their services – but it’s also pretty tiresome to listen to those who don’t charge, moaning about those who do.

I’m not going to end with the standard wedding shot, instead I’m ending with something that maybe the first timer could not immediately do.


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/9/The-Wedding-Photographer Thu, 07 Sep 2017 01:00:42 GMT
Positive Thinking https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/6/positive-thinking I've been a Manchester girl my entire life (apart from the last two years we have lived here in Lincolnshire) - The story this week though, and the events that unfolded broke my heart - and I guess would have done where-ever it happened.

Manchester has a heart - but like any major city, it's not perfect. I think that no matter where this atrocity had been committed, people would have turned out in droves to help - it's the nature of people generally to rise to a crisis.  Should this have been Sheffield - it would have been Yorkshire stubbornness, rather than Manchester determination, so I don't think it's unique.

Having said that, I admired very much the grit of the people who helped strangers, gave lifts, and supplied food.

I worked in the city centre for many many years - our office got blown up by the IRA bomb -  Could not believe the devastation left behind. I was in town on 9/11 - attended St Anne's Church in the centre afterwards, and again was amazed at the coming together of people.  We came together in solidarity for America - and the Manchester people came together again in solidarity for Monday night.

There are lots of rubbish things currently happening in the world, so I've made a list of things that have made me happy this year.... and it's only May !

My beautiful daughter came home from Australia for a whole month (in fact she's still here with her boyfriend).....

I celebrated 35 years of marriage to my lovely hubby, it was our coral wedding anniversary this month.

We have much better friends than we probably deserve (me especially LOL)

We had a new fireplace built

The car passed its MOT

The camera did not pass its MOT - but it did get repaired despite the bill !!

We are relatively healthy, and relatively sane!  (That's pretty relative though)

I was able to afford a new camera......

I finally found somewhere that could give me a good haircut.

Discovered that I could grow chilli successfully, and garlic, and beans........

I rediscovered a cousin that I have not met up with for 30 years..... it was an amazing experience....

I visited Liverpool for the first time in an age, and met up with an old friend from work...

Found out that people like to dress up, and have their photos taken....  friends are far more enthusiastic about this than I care to think about - but it makes me smile when I do!

I've been asked to judge at lots of camera clubs around Lincolnshire - met lots of nice folks, and seen some amazing photographs and creations.

The sun is shining as I type, and I realise that I have a home, a roof over my head, food in the fridge, and a nice garden for the dogs to play in.

There's wine too, and decadently,  gin in the kitchen.

Yes, there's lots of horrid things in the world, so lets focus on the small things - and in the same breath say a prayer for all the folks who have lost loved ones this week....

I'll end with a photo that makes me smile - Sanderlings skittering across the beach last week.....  Give us a smile - go on - you know you want to !


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/6/positive-thinking Thu, 01 Jun 2017 16:45:13 GMT
Pixelstick GIF's https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/4/pixelstick-gifs I've had the Pixelstick for a long time, and although I've used it regularly to demonstrate light painting at camera clubs, I can't say I've used it to it's maximum for me.

These last two weeks (since I did a talk in Sheffield) I've been getting to grips with the more interesting aspects of its use.  For example, you can create GIF's and although you can't host them here on Zen, you can upload them to a site called "Giphy" and access a link from there. 

I spent a lot of time working out how to get maximum smoothness from movement, and last night - in a moment of realisation - It dawned on me that you needed more frames for more smoothness.  The explanation from the Pixelstick website is not clear - but I think I need constant light (rather than a darkening sky) and far more frames than I have been using.

The GIF below is only made up of 7 frames.... I shall be exploring this further, and seeing what can be done with this technology.





[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) GIF Light Light Painting Pixelstick dark garden night https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2017/4/pixelstick-gifs Tue, 18 Apr 2017 14:38:11 GMT
Take a photo, make a photo ! https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2016/10/take-a-photo-make-a-photo Is clicking the shutter really enough ?  Do we spend too much time post processing ?   Should we be 'pure' in our art.  What comes in the lens, comes out in the print....

I'd say NO.  Clicking the shutter for me, is only the beginning of the process.

Whilst digitally enhancing images has become far easier, it's nothing new.  The practice has existed since photography began. There was an exhibition in New York in 2012 which examined this whole thing.  Click HERE for the link.  The exhibition featured images created in the period 1840 - 1990.  Look again at the first date...... 1840 !!!  The photographs were altered using a variety of techniques including multiple exposures, combination printing (images used from more than one negative), painting, and retouching.   Nothing new really here, apart from the speed - it was much slower then to get the same results as nowadays.

untitledUnknown Artist, American School
Man on Rooftop with Eleven Men in Formation on His Shoulders
ca. 1930
Gelatin silver print
Collection of George Eastman House
Photo Courtesy: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The earliest example I could find was this one.... a two headed man - created in 1855 !


So why is manipulation such a huge problem for some people?

My all time hero - Ansel Adams was one of the greatest landscape photographers of all time.  He was probably one of the perfectionists.  His images were printed, edited, printed, edited, and printed again.  His 'zone' system is complex, and, for his time, revolutionary.  Google him - look at his images before and after editing.  One of his most famous pictures - Moonrise over Hernandez, New Mexico' - is a perfect example of his post processing skills.

So, next time the 'purists' start shouting about images coming straight out of the camera, because that's how it should be done, just remind them that although sometimes it's done that way - most times it's not.  That old adage that 'the camera never lies' is bunkum.  It lies most of the time.

The reality is that the people who make the cameras in Japan, or where-ever are the people who are ultimately telling you what your image will look like - especially if you are shooting in JPEG.  They decide the colours, the saturation, the sharpness. You decide on the crop.

The ultimate decision of course is the photographers  own.  There is no right and wrong way to process (or not) your own images.  There is also no need to preach about perfect out of camera images - nor is there a need for people to stop manipulating images just as much as they would like.

There's space for all of us.......

No go out and MAKE some photographs............

untitledMaurice Guibert (French, 1856–1913)
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (French, Albi 1864–1901 Saint-André-du-Bois)

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec as Artist and Model
Gelatin silver print
Philadelphia Museum of Art, Gift of Henry P. Mcllhenny, 1982-14-2

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2016/10/take-a-photo-make-a-photo Sat, 15 Oct 2016 14:12:25 GMT
The Rule of the Fool https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2016/10/the-rule-of-the-fool The Rule of the Fool

Are you a fool?  Why do you think you are, or not, as the case may be?

In my head, the fool usually rules – he challenges the norm, and his job is to question the rules, conventions and so on, that keep you thinking the same things.

Sometimes, in photography, you have to let your head rule, let the fool inside you out.

As an adult, I think it’s harder to do than when you were a child.  Children act the fool all the time, and everyone smiles and chuckles and says “how cute” – once grown, the same actions are seen as unhealthy and immature.  Now I’m not suggesting for one minute that we all go around acting like a  5 year old all the time, but I am suggesting that you let your mind wander. Laugh at yourself.

I had an idea a while ago – not an original one I hasten to add – but I’d seen images created of people apparently levitating.  A quick check on the web pretty much told me how they were achieved, and then, with the aid of a pal, we set off to see what we could do.  It was harder than we both thought, to get the light right, to get a natural looking lift, and more importantly, to get perspectives right so it ‘looked’ like we’d got a person to float.

I was reminded of a quote I’d read

“If you tell people where to go, but not how to get there, you’ll be amazed at the results”

And that’s how we were – we had a rough idea where to go, but it was up to us to come up with a ‘fool’ proof route.

A problem was posed, and we had complete freedom in our imaginations as to how to solve it.

At school, we learn that failure is not an option – you are scored throughout your life – tests, exams, sales figures, business goals.  We learn to be right with only one answer as often as possible. We keep ‘mistakes’ to a minimum.   You have learned not only to not make mistakes, but you learn to not put yourself in a situation where you might fail.

The photographic judge looks at your photo, and doesn’t like it – he/she scores it 8/20 – you are deflated.  You won’t make that mistake again – you won’t enter a competition again – at its worst – you won’t take any more photographs if that’s the attitude.

The question is – Are you afraid to fail?  Are you afraid to try something new in your photo journey because of that fear?

What I see with most amateur photographers (and by that I mean new starters mostly) is that they post online everything they shoot – the good, the bad and the ugly…..  The people who are rated more highly, are the ones who (apparently) shoot good images all the time.   WRONG – they are the curators, the people who only post their good shots.  You only see what you are allowed to see – because yes, they make as many mistakes as the rest of you – it’s just that you don’t see them.

So, be brave, be curious, make mistakes and play the fool.

My experiment with levitation, by the way, not only led me on an interesting journey through the ‘how did they do that’ process, but ultimately led me to images that I like, and have entered into national competitions, with some degree of success.

Enjoy being the fool……


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2016/10/the-rule-of-the-fool Tue, 11 Oct 2016 10:54:03 GMT
Are We Frightened of Change? https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2016/10/are-we-frightened-of-change A few weeks ago, I wrote about photographers who were doing the same thing year after year, and me thinking that they were not as interesting, as those who moved on, tried different things, and were willing to experiment.

To some extent, I take that back.  There are photographers who are interesting, and have been, and will remain interesting, no matter what they do – mainly because they are very good at a particular genre. I would however, bet my last dollar, that at some point they have tried different things, and that they have in some areas failed (See my fear of failure post).

I realised only the other day, that I’m pretty guilty of this myself.  Now, I’m always happy to have a go at something new, something different – and at least try, even if I do fail at it.  But, yesterday, I drove for just under 3 hours to get to Wollaton Hall, where there were Red Deer, in the hopes of seeing some of the rut.  I’ve done this for the last 6 years (not the long drive, just the photos), and I’ve had some pretty good images.  What dawned on me yesterday, was that I was trying to do the same things I was doing before I moved home into deepest Lincolnshire.

Where I lived before, for example – deer parks were pretty easy to get to.  Lyme Park was 20 minutes away, and then there was Tatton, and Dunham Massey – all National Trust, but then I was a member, and all three were accessible for early morning, and evening shoots.  Here, now, Bradgate Park, and Wollaton Hall are probably two of the few places with a Red Deer Herd, and I made two mistakes yesterday.

  1. I left home too late, and
  2. I left home far too late

Nearly 3 hours there, three hours on site, and same back.  Exhausted? Yes, Pictures? Yes – Good Pictures? – Weeeelllll…. maybe some pretty OK ones.


Bradgate Park Leicester is 84 miles and 2 hours.  I went there last year, and yes, it was better access, time and more deer activity.

I did wonder as I crawled into bed last night whether I shouldn’t reconsider what I was photographing on a weekly basis.  I’ve not adapted my photographic behaviour to my new location – I’m still doing some things I was doing before, and maybe, not as well – just because of the distances involved.

I’ve learned the hard way – I need to adapt to what I have now, and move on, accept the changes, and next week, I’m back in the car, and looking for Stags…….


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2016/10/are-we-frightened-of-change Wed, 05 Oct 2016 09:43:38 GMT
Please be Gentle - It's my First Time..... https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2015/9/please-be-gentle---its-my-first-time Please be Gentle - It’s my First Time

I’ve not blogged in an age - we moved house, I started to rebuild contacts in a new area, I neglected all sorts of things in an effort to re-establish my life in a new county - and when I look back, all these things are excuses for not concentrating on blogging, or on so many other things I needed to do.  

What’s prompted me back into writing again, is the constant stream of excuses that photographers are coming up with these days, to explain their below standard work, which they are sharing on Social Media on an almost daily basis.  It’s driving me nuts……  

That’s not to say of course that there are many excellent photographers out there, sharing some truly inspirational work.  The trouble is, there are so many more ‘photographers’ (and I use the quote marks intentionally) who feel the need to share a lot of sub-standard images, and who feel that people should be praising them for their trouble.

I’m a member of a few Facebook groups - and I’ve actually left a good number - trusting that the few I stuck with would be more ‘constructive’.  Some of these groups encourage members to post images for constructive critique, and this is where the whole thing starts to fall apart.

“Please be gentle, I’m only just starting with photography / photoshop / Lightroom / Elements - don’t be harsh”

I’m more than happy to give constructive critique to those who really want it - Telling people their images are good, when they are good, and offering (I hope) constructive feedback  to those whose images are not so good, but have potential.  

However, if you are new, and just starting out, is it not even more important that you get honest feedback about your images?   If people constantly tell you that what you are producing is good - then of course you will keep on doing it - in exactly the same way, and you will continue to make the same mistakes, and I find that the poorer the image, the less likely people are to accept any criticism of it.  

I also see poor advice being given, and explanations for poor technique being blamed on equipment.  A prime example happened today.  I was reading a post where someone had put an image up for review - there was so much noise in the image that you could barely make out what it was.  The image was scaled up to 200%, the ISO had been set at 6400 and the exposure time was just 1/200 of a second.  The usual explanations were offered.  The high ISO, and the darkness of the image - the upscaling, all contributed to the rather messy image.  Later in the discussion - someone chipped in with and offered the explanation that it wasn’t the photographer who was to blame at all.  It would be a combination of a faulty SD card, and the fact that the Battery was nearing depletion that caused the ‘grain’ on the image.  A number of people tried to explain that a low battery would not cause this effect, but the photographer was relieved that it wasn’t anything they had done.  It was a ‘gear’ problem and so they could fix this by always taking with them a spare battery……..

I’m sorry, but this sort of thing is worse than useless.  Taking the easy way out, is not always an option.  Sometimes you just have to learn how to use your camera, and understand what the settings do, and how you can work with them, when the light is against you.

Understanding your camera, and it’s limitations are key to making better images.  All photographers need to know and understand the relationship between F/stop, shutter speed and ISO.  Adding in white balance, focus, composition and using a tripod where necessary.  There is a host of information on the net, and asking a question on a Facebook forum does not mean you are going to get good answers.  Check out the ones you do get - make sure the information is accurate.  

You can’t work on the principle of “It was on Facebook, so it must be right”

So before you post images on the net, asking for critique ask yourselves these questions

 Do I REALLY want other peoples opinion?

Do I really?…… because there are some images that we just feel are ‘right’ for us.  It won’t really matter what other people think, because they are personal to you.  It might not be a technically perfect image, but it captured that moment, which means so much to you.  But don’t forget, other people don’t know your circumstances, or your family, or your pets.  To them it’s just an underexposed image.

2. Is the opinion really about what you have posted

Opinions can be hi-jacked by other things happening in the same thread.  Some posters will ask questions that others will answer, and in the end the whole thing is not about your image any more, it’s about something different.  So be careful when you read the comments - it may not even be you they are talking about.

3. Are the comments actually helpful

Does “wow”, “amazing”, “beautiful work”, “incredible”, actually mean anything to you?  Or would you prefer comments such as “the composition works well”, “superb lead lines”, “nice and sharp”.  Even negative ones “the shadows are too dark”,  “you have some blown out highlights there”, “love the shot, but I see a couple of hot spots on the models face”.   Some of these things can be fixed in post production, and because you are so close to your images, you don’t see them sometimes.  It’s good and helpful to have them pointed out to you later on.

Hearing feedback about general things in your image can help you later on.  Ask yourself - can you take what’s being said, and apply it, to other images. If you can’t, I don’t think you should be asking for critique in the first place.   Is there a lesson to be learned in the feedback you are getting.

I encourage my students to take time looking at other people’s work.  Not just photographers, but artists and painters.  Ask yourself “why” is this person’s work so good - how does this compare to what I am producing.  Visit art galleries and photographic exhibitions and try to work out what is good about some of the images you see.

In summary then, if you are new to photography, photoshop, lightroom, whatever - then doesn’t it make more sense that people are absolutely truthful about your work?  There are ways of offering constructive critique without being rude or disrespectful.  If people ask for critique, then we should give it truthfully, and honestly, and expect it to be treated as such.  If we continually praise poor workmanship, then this will become the norm, and we will start to forget what truly great images look like.




[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) Facebook art critique equipment lightroom photography photogshop https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2015/9/please-be-gentle---its-my-first-time Thu, 17 Sep 2015 12:22:10 GMT
Harness Racing at Pikehall in Derbyshire https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/6/harness-racing-at-pikehall-in-derbyshire Last week, a few of us met up for some social photography at Pikehall in Derbyshire - we decided that we would go and watch the Harness Racing, as none of us had ever been before.  It's about 30 miles from where we are based, and so with lunch packed away, we intrepid explorers set off on a gloriously sunshiny Sunday....

Racing started at 2pm, and there were 9 races in total.  But, we thought, what is harness racing exactly.. the answer came from the Harness Racing Association


There are various opinions as to how Harness Racing began – folk racing their horses and traps home from church, trotting horses under saddle carrying the post all over the country and being raced by their owners etc.


Racing is thought to have begun in the mid 1700′s, the earliest recorded race being on Newmarket Heath on 29th August 1750. The Earl of March and the Earl of Eglintowne bet 1,000 guineas that four horses could pull a four wheeled chaise carrying one person 19 miles in an under an hour. A century and a half later, Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales drove a trotter on the old Lanark racecourse in Scotland.


Many ‘match’ races used to take place between two horses, and also betting on horses trotting a set distance inside a certain time, some of the more notable recorded ones being:- In 1800 Phenomena, a brown mare 14.3hh, trotted 17 miles on the road in 56 minutes, when she was 12 years old. Some questioned the accuracy of the timing so she repeated the feat in three minutes less! She also trotted 19 miles in an hour, and at the age of 23, she still trotted 9 miles in 28.5 minutes. Creeping Sally was only 14 hands and blind, but she was backed to cover 50 miles of public road within 5 hours, trotting in harness. Her blindness probably proved an advantage that day, as there was a thick fog at Shoreditch and for all of the 25 miles out on the Harlow road. She turned round and headed back to London in 16 minutes under the stipulated time, with no signs of distress.


In 1839, two horses which were driven in tandem trotting 45 miles of road in 2 hours 55.5 minutes, were Tommy and Gustavus, a 24 year old. Both horses had won individual match races. By driving this pair backwards and forwards over a measured five mile stretch of road between Hampton and Sunbury, Mr Burke of Hereford won £100 for completing inside 3 hours. Lady was a trotting mare from Birmingham born in 1828 by Mr Richard Taylor from the noted horse Matchless out of Cheshire Cheese Lass. She was less than 15 hands but her first match was won against a 16hh horse, between Litchfield and Burton on 23/11/1832. She won easily passing him at the distance of 5 miles after giving him a mile start. On 13/5/1834 she trotted 17 miles in 55 minutes, carrying 12 stone.


The main foundation sire of American Harness Racing stock was a grey English thoroughbred called Messenger, and he was exported to America in 1788. His career as a stallion lasted 20 years, and today nearly all of America’s Standardbreds can be traced directly back to one of Messenger’s great grandsons, Hambletonian. The name Standardbred derives from the early American trotters who were required to reach a set standard of 2 minutes 30 seconds for a mile, in order to gain breed recognition. As far back as 1800, many top class American Standardbreds have stopped in Britain on their way to Australia, and British breeders have benefited from them resting here.

(info taken from the BHRA Website) - All images by Diane Seddon LRPS CPAGB

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) derbyshire harness racing horse racing horses pikehall racing sport sully https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/6/harness-racing-at-pikehall-in-derbyshire Tue, 10 Jun 2014 15:13:05 GMT
CPAGB Award https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/4/cpagb-award April 27th this year has been in my diary for a long time, as it was the day that my images were judged by a panel to see if I could be awarded the Certificate from the Photographic Alliance of Great Britain.

static.squarespace.comThe Photographic Alliance of Great Britain (PAGB) is an organisation that co-ordinates specific activities for photographic clubs in England, Scotland, Wales & Northern Ireland. It does this through 15 geographical regions known as Federations.

It also offers other services such as Recorded Lectures to clubs and its own photographic Distinctions (known as awards for photographic merit) direct to qualifying club members.

The C award - is the first of three offered by the PAGB, and involves the entry of 10 images - each of which are judged to a maximum of 30 marks.  Each image has to achieve over 20 marks in order for a pass to be achieved.  So a minimum of 200 marks is needed.

My application was successful after many hours of work, and with assistance from a mentor.

Further Information and Reference
The PAGB www.thepagb.org.uk
L&CPU www.lcpuonline.org.uk
FIAP www.fiap.net 

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) CPAGB LRPS https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/4/cpagb-award Wed, 30 Apr 2014 08:53:01 GMT
How Has it Been so Long ? https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/2/how-has-it-been-so-long Posted on by

It’s been over two months since my last blog post, and we have been so busy over Christmas and New Year.  So much going on, and so little time to blog.

Late last year I spent some time trying to capture the red Squirrels at Formby – when I set off, the light was superb, and for the first 40 minutes there it was gorgeous – then the clouds rolled in, and it just went dark.  The squirrels were elusive – maybe due to the weather – they have recovered well from their last attack of squirrel pox…


After this, and into January, a trip to Martin Mere – but again the weather was dull.  The goldfinches performed though, with their ongoing squabbles over food.


Late January, and February brought a raft of dinner engagements, with presentations.


All in all it’s been a busy quarter – with more to come.

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/2/how-has-it-been-so-long Thu, 27 Feb 2014 11:28:12 GMT
The Birds..... https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/12/the-birds It's been a while since I got out and sat in a bird hide - but finally I've been able to manage a half day - well actually not even a full half day - really just a few hours.


Having said that - it was frustrating to travel down to my favourite hide, as the Christmas traffic was terrible.   Arriving though was a great relief, and the pools and hides were as fantastic as I remember them - it seems a long time, but in reality it's only been about 2 months.  The birds were co-operative, and it was good to watch as well as photograph them.

I was most impressed by the Great Spotted Woodpecker, a youngster turned up a couple of times whilst I was there, and didn't even immediately fly off when I came out of the hide.  He was full of confidence, and so handsome.

There are around 140,000 breeding pairs of woodpeckers in the UK, though I don't see them very often, and this one was a delight.

The cold of the day, and the knowledge that I had an appointment in the evening, and 'work' to do eventually made me leave, though reluctantly.  Hoping to return between Christmas and the New Year.  Already I can't wait....

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/12/the-birds Wed, 18 Dec 2013 16:12:31 GMT
Technology Wars https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/12/technology-wars Thinking about buying a new camera?  Maybe getting a new one for Christmas?  A simple question, but one that assumes you know what you are doing.  Plus it assumes that you are not simply upgrading, for the sake of it.  How many times do people change their gear, because getting a 'better' camera will give you better images....

I'm using the Canon 1D MK4, bought in 2010 - but I see a LOT of people now who are more than happy with their mobile phones, or tablets for their images.  Does this mean the death of the DSLR?  I'd like to think not, but it is true that some newspapers have removed all their photography staff, and given the journalists an iphone or other 'smart' gadget.  Maybe the ethos of 'better images' is starting to vanish, and we are experiencing a new boom of quantity over quality.  The sheer amount of visual images on the internet now, through flickr, facebook, and so on, means that you are seeing far more poor quality images than ever before;  and the sad thing is that the more poor quality things you see, the more you get used to seeing them, and the more you accept that as a standard.

That's not to say there aren't the great photographers out there - they are there, and they are putting an enormous amount of energy and skill into producing some outstanding images. I use Google+ and Flickr to share pictures I have made, and they are great places to experiment, and see what sort of reaction there is to new stuff that I produce.  In the end analysis though, it's still social sharing, and maybe it's not as real as showing them in the 'real' world.  What is the value of strangers 'liking' an image if they are not prepared to explain what it is they like?

Has the ease with which images are captured actually devalued their credibility?  Have images become worth so much less since the advent of the mobile phone?

I ask myself this more often these days.  For example - at a dinner I was shooting the other month, a chap came up to me and asked why I thought I needed such a big camera - he himself had his ipad mini - and was more than happy to show me his 'brilliant' pictures that he had taken with it.  I'm not saying his images were bad, but he what he really wanted to show me was that I didn't need the gear I had.  Somehow though I think that if a 'professional' photographer turned up at his wedding with an ipad, he might be just a little underwhelmed !

The whole value of images is reducing almost on a daily basis - I get asked to work for free all the time "for exposure", and that I should be grateful to be asked, because, after all, they could have done it with their compacts, or phones.  (Try asking the plumber to come along for free - see how he or she reacts to that one.....)  On the other hand, with the better cameras, and powerful software, why shouldn't they try it for themselves.

My own thoughts are that photographers have to move with the times.  I'll confess to having taken images with my ipad, during a conference where the lens I had with me would not fit the whole lecture hall in.  My fault I admit, for not having the right lens with me.  The ipad image though was quite acceptable, and the client didn't even bat an eyelid.  I just added that one shot in with all the others, knowing that the images were only going to be used on line.  The problems arise when a print is required and you can't get the image quality.

I would say though that just because there are more people out there taking photographs, doesn't mean that there are more 'good' photographers.  I think there are about the same number of people producing good images as there were before - it's just that they are somewhat overwhelmed by all the other 'stuff'.

It'll be interesting to see in the next year or so, where we go with the new DSLR type video cameras, from which you can capture one frame as a still.  Why worry about taking individual images - video the whole event and pick your shot.

Next year's technology could be worth looking at.....

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) images ipad iphone photographer photography press https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/12/technology-wars Fri, 13 Dec 2013 16:20:46 GMT
The Rut of the Reds https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/10/the-rut-of-the-reds Red deer are our largest mammal in the UK.  Stags weigh anything from 90 - 190kg with females 63 - 120kg. The number of branches on antlers increases with age. Up to 16 points in native animals - who can live typically 18 years.


The breeding season, or rut, occurs from the end of September through to November.  Stags return to the hinds home range and compete for access to hinds by engaging in elaborate displays of dominance, including roaring, parallel walks and fighting.  Serious injury and death can result but fighting only occurs between stags of similar size that can not assess dominance by any of the other means.  The dominant stag then ensures exclusive mating with the hinds.


Only stags over 5 years old tend to achieve mating despite being sexually mature much earlier (before their 2nd birthday in productive woodland populations).  In woodland populations hinds over a year old give birth to a single calf after an 8 month gestation, between mid-May to mid-July each year.


Injuries do happen, and sometimes even death.

Red deer are active throughout the 24 hour period but make more use of open spaces during the hours of darkness in populations experiencing frequent disturbance . Peak times of activity are at dawn and dusk.


Red deer are widespread throughout the UK, and can be found in many parks and in the wild.  Bradgate Park in Leicestershire, Lyme Park in Cheshire, Tatton Park, Dunham Massey, and the Lake District.   Also common in East Anglia, and the South West of England.  In Scotland in the Scottish Highlands, Dumfriesshire.

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) Deer rut breeding deer mating nature red deer stag wildlife https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/10/the-rut-of-the-reds Mon, 21 Oct 2013 09:14:18 GMT
The Damselfly https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/8/the-damselfly In my last post I talked about Dragonflies, and in this one, I want to talk about their smaller counterparts, the Damselfly, but first the differences between the two..

Dragonflies have eyes that touch, or nearly touch at the top of the head, they are stocky, and have different sized wing pairs.  When they perch, the wings are held open.

Damselflies have eyes that are clearly separated, one on each side of the head, they are long and slender, and have evenly sized wings, which are held close when they perch, as can be seen in the image below.

Common Blue Damselfly perching


Damselflies are carnivorous insects that live and breed near a wide variety of freshwater habitats. They lay their eggs in water, and the immature damselflies spend the first several months or years as aquatic predators. These immature damselflies, called nymphs, have external gills that allow them to extract oxygen from the water. After undergoing metamorphosis, new adult damselflies fly away from the water for a brief period of several days to several weeks, after which they return to breed. Both adult and immature damselflies are predators whose diet consists primarily of insects. (Corbet, 1999; Silsby, 2001)

Damselfly eating an aphid
Damselfly eating an aphid


The mating behaviour of the damselfly is quite unique.  Males have two sets of genitalia.  To mate, the male must grasp the female behind the head, and curl his abdomen into a circle.  In this position the male and female are said to be 'in tandem' - if the female is receptive, she will curl her abdomen forward to join the tip of her abdomen with the male's second set of genitilia, sperm is then transferred from one to another.  This position, called 'the wheel'.  After mating, the female will lay eggs usually below the water line, often guarded by the male

Mating Damselfly
Mating Damselfly


The average Damselfly, probably only lives between 3 to 4 weeks as an adult, but the damselfly nymphs can spend months in this early stage, depending on food source, temperatures and so on.

Damselfly do need a minimum temperature at which to fly - in the early mornings, they can be seen spreading their wings to dry out the morning dew, and warm up.

Damselfly in morning dew
Damselfly in morning dew


Damselfly and Dragonfly populations are good indicators of environmental quality and population levels are a good indicator of the health of the area.

They are the most ancient of insects, with evidence of them being found as fossils some millions of years ago.


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) damsefly derbyshire dew flight insect life cycle mating nature predator sex wildlife https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/8/the-damselfly Mon, 12 Aug 2013 15:18:43 GMT
Hunting for Dragons https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/8/hunting-for-dragons This week I was out walking with the dogs, and noticed a good number of Damsel and Dragonflies.  By Friday I had a bit of time, and decided to go hunting Dragons.... The majority I saw were Brown Hawkers...

Brown Hawker

The Brown Hawker (Aeshna grandis) is a large dragonfly about 73 millimetres (2.9 in) long. It is a distinctive species and is easily recognised, even in flight, by its brown body and bronze wings. At rest, blue spots on the second and third segments of the male's abdomen can be noticed; these are absent in female.

It is widespread in England but commonest in the South East; local in Ireland and rare in Scotland. It is found on well-vegetated ponds, lakes and canals. It patrols a regular hunting territory around margins which is vigorously defended against intruders.

The flight time is mainly July to September. The nymph has stripes on the side of the thorax and distinct banding on the legs. (Text from Wikipedia)

Brown Hawker

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/8/hunting-for-dragons Sat, 03 Aug 2013 21:40:39 GMT
Water Fools at Salford Quays https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/water-fools-at-salford-quays The French outdoor theatre company ILOTOPE put on a spectacular event this weekend at Salford Quays.  I was down there to shoot the dress rehearsal which, although brilliantly done, did not have the fireworks going.

Water Fools, Salford Quays-11

It did feature though, a floating car, with a caravan, a huge floating bed, and lots of other magic.  At 9.30 prompt a car arrived, dropping a man off on a platform in the middle of the water.

Water Fools, Salford Quays-14

The story is rooted in the fanatical, as a surreal world explodes out of a man’s head, transporting him from the rigmarole of his everyday existence to a landscape populated with mythical creatures and inexplicable magic, while all spectacularly taking place on the water’s surface. Caravans, prams and penny-farthings will feature, defying all logic, bringing an impossibly innovative piece of entertainment to Salford Quays.

Water Fools, Salford Quays-48

Choreographed by French artist Bruno Schnebelin the routine had chain breath-taking visuals, punctuated by pyrotechnics, with engrossing theatre while fellow countryman Phil Spectrum composed an original score to make the show spectacular in all aspects.

Water Fools, Salford Quays-40

The rest of the images from this shoot can be seen HERE

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/water-fools-at-salford-quays Sun, 21 Jul 2013 15:14:08 GMT
Red Kites and Springwatch https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/6/red-kites-and-springwatch The BBC have bought and used one of my red kite images which currently features on their Springwatch blog.

You can see it here


The shot was taken quite some time ago in Wales and is, I think, a beautiful portrait of an outstanding bird.

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/6/red-kites-and-springwatch Thu, 13 Jun 2013 05:25:52 GMT
Manchester City Games https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/5/manchester-city-games Manchester City Games 2013

The Manchester City Games were held today - May 25th, and will be followed by the BUPA 10K run on the 26th - the games though were all about running, jumping, and pole vaulting.

It was hard for me to be everywhere all at once, but I managed to bag all of the long jump, and all of the pole vaulting.  I did shoot the races last year, so tried to concentrate on things I hadn't shot before.

What I did find was that the main challenge was not so much the athletes themselves, but the light - it was dull and shady in the morning - meaning I needed a high ISO to keep the shutter speeds up, and harsh sunlight in the afternoon, meaning I had to control the amount of light that was coming into the camera, without compromising the image.

Malte Mohr

Anyway, it was an experience I hope to repeat in the none too distant future....

Feel free to peruse the rest of the images by following THIS LINK

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) DSLR Press and PR Thoughts celebrities manchester photography running https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/5/manchester-city-games Sat, 25 May 2013 19:39:31 GMT
The Ruff at Martin Mere https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/4/the-ruff-at-martin-mere It's been a while since I got out to shoot birds, and nothing else... this last weekend we made a trip out to Martin Mere - we've not been there for a long time, and it was good to meet up with some friends, including some I'd spoken to on Facebook, but never actually met.  Although the day was a bit overcast, the light was nice in the morning.
We spent a good part of the morning in the SwanLink hide, and the Ruff showed particularly well.

The ruff is a medium-sized wading bird. It has a long neck, a small head, a rather short slightly droopy bill and medium-long orange or reddish leg. In flight it shows a faint wing-stripe and oval white patches either side of the tail. It breeds in a very few lowland sites in eastern England, and it appears that numbers are dropping. It is a migrant but in the UK some birds are present all year round. Many young birds from Scandinavia visit the UK in late summer, then migrating on to Africa.

Overview - Information from RSPB

Latin name

Philomachus pugnax


Sandpipers and allies (Scolopacidae)

Where to see them

Best looked for on passage in spring and autumn in suitable habitat, particularly on the east and south coasts of the UK. Some birds overwinter, generally near the coast. Try some of the RSPB coastal wetland reserves, where there are lagoons, such as Titchwell, Norfolk.

When to see them

All year round

What they eat

Insects, larvae, frogs, small fish, seeds


Europe UK breeding* UK wintering* UK passage*
- 37 males 800 birds -

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) Birds Lancashire Martin Mere Nature Ruff Water Bird Wetlands Wildlife photography https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/4/the-ruff-at-martin-mere Mon, 08 Apr 2013 15:10:19 GMT
Shooting at the Speed of Light https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/3/shooting-at-the-speed-of-light

Speed of Light Salford: 21-23 March

NVA’s Speed of Light brought The Quays, Greater Manchester’s waterfront to life from Thu 21 – Sat 23 March 2013 from 8-9pm each night.

A centrepiece of the Edinburgh International Festival and recently staged in the docklands of Yokohama in Japan , the night-time work used light, intentional movement and sound to change the way we see and feel about a chosen environment.

Hundreds of runners in specially commissioned LED light suits created beautiful, choreographed patterns of light flowing through streets, over bridges and around public spaces and buildings. Free and non-ticketed for the the watching audience, it was seen as a piece of abstract art on the quays.

I was able to photograph the dress rehearsal for this fantastic event from above the crowds - some of the patterns made by the runners were seen at their best from this vantage point.

Many thanks to the organisers NVA and to Peel Holdings for allowing the photography to take place.

To see the full set of images CLICK HERE

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) LED NVA Salford quays art light manchester music patterns photography run running salford speed of light waterfront https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/3/shooting-at-the-speed-of-light Sun, 24 Mar 2013 11:06:13 GMT
The Google / Getty Stock Image Situation https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/3/the-google-/-getty-stock-image-situation The Google / Getty Stock Images Situation


Over the last few weeks, I have closely followed the situation that currently exists between Google, and Getty Images.

It comes almost immediately after the problems with Instagram terms of service - which were re-issued to state that

“Some or all of the Service may be supported by advertising revenue. To help us deliver interesting paid or sponsored content or promotions, you agree that a business or other entity may pay us to display your username, likeness, photos (along with any associated metadata), and/or actions you take, in connection with paid or sponsored content or promotions, without any compensation to you.”

“Instagram does not claim ownership of any Content that you post on or through the Service. Instead, you hereby grant to Instagram a non-exclusive, fully paid and royalty-free, transferable, sub-licensable, worldwide license to use the Content that you post on or through the Service, except that you can control who can view certain of your Content and activities on the Service as described in the Service’s Privacy Policy.”

These terms have since been revised, Getty though has continued to broker a deal with Google that seems on the face of it to be totally unreasonable.  On the Google Drive Blog  they announced 5000 new images were to be made available free of charge to Google Drive users.  Create an image on Google Drive, and choose your image to illustrate it.  Whether for personal, or commercial use the images are free.

Where do these images come from?  Well, a lot seem to come from ‘i-stock’ , and others from the Getty/Flickr relationship.

This is a licence deal arranged with Google, through Getty images and iStock RF collections.  There was an initial pool of several thousand images licensed from Getty and iStock RF that are on the Getty platform.

What does this mean - well initially we have seen that some photographers whose images are sourced through Flickr to the Getty RF pool, have received around $12 per image, to have their images on the Google Drive search.  Images which have had the metadata stripped and can therefore not be traced back to the photographer.

So - initially, if you have photos on Flickr, which are currently in the Getty pool, you may find them turning up on Google Drive.. You will know if this has happened, as it will show in the October / November 2012 statements.  The main problem as I see it, is that you have images of people who have signed a model release stating that their image will not be used for certain purposes - but once out in the wild - they could end up anywhere - and the photographer can’t do anything about it.  The Getty contract is suitably vague, and even if you pull out of the programme, you can’t recover images already sold.

There has been another post on the iStock website

“We’ve heard you, and we’ve met with Google and are working with them to refine the implementation which we believe will address some of the concerns raised over the past several days–including copyright ownership.”

Maybe the agreement will be changed.  I’ll be watching to see how this one develops.

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/3/the-google-/-getty-stock-image-situation Mon, 04 Mar 2013 11:57:03 GMT
Small Mammals https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/1/small-mammals Last week, I was fortunate enough to attend a small mammal workshop - and we were treated to an array of harvest mice, hedgehogs, mink, and voles.  It was lovely to shoot a hedgehog (which usually are in hibernation at this time of year).  The hog was 'borrowed' from a local rescue centre, and is due for release this spring.  It was good and round, and fat - a great stage for a hungry animal.

The Harvest Mice were tiny, cute as a button, and jet propelled fast - the hit rate was low, but when we got shots, they were fabulous.

DV7B8198 DV7B8293 DV7B8301 DV7B8539 Hedgehog


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) harvest mouse hedgehog mink north west wild images vole https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/1/small-mammals Mon, 14 Jan 2013 10:07:14 GMT
Happy New Year https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/1/happy-new-year Happy new year for 2013 - and it's been great so far...

Already we've had a fabulous studio shoot with the wonderful Laura Norrey - a 1950's style pinup model.  She's quite new to modelling, but I think that she'll go far - a lovely personality, willing to work hard and takes direction exceptionally well.  I really hope we can get her in front of the camera again in the near future.

Here's a few images from a brilliant shoot - enjoy

DV7B7730 DV7B7818

Barlow Studios Portrait Shoot
Barlow Studios Portrait Shoot


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/1/happy-new-year Mon, 14 Jan 2013 09:43:38 GMT
X-Factor Final in Manchester https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/12/x-factor-final-in-manchester
Gary Barlow and Chris Maloney
Gary Barlow and Christopher Maloney

Well it's been a long weekend of x-factor madness here in Manchester, ending with James Arthur as a worthy winner, Jahmene Douglas coming in second and Christopher Maloney not appearing on the final night.

Louis Walsh is rumoured to have said that Simon Cowell has 'big plans' for both Jahmene and James.

James Arthur
James Arthur

What happened to Christopher though?  The 34 year old is said to be not interested in the x-factor final, and has gone back to Liverpool.

Jahmane Douglas
Jahmene Douglas

When I photographed the final three last Thursday night, they were all in good spirits, and all three got a good reception from the people who turned out and stood in the cold and rain to greet them, and their mentors as they arrived at Manchester Central.

Louis Walsh
Louis Walsh

I wish the contestants every success for their future careers.

Tulisa Contostavlos
Tulisa Contostavios

The rest of the images from the shoot can be found by clicking Here

To buy images please contact www.opticphotos.co.uk

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) Christopher Maloney Gary Barlow Jahmene Douglas James Arthur Louis Walsh Nicole Scherzinger Tulisa Contostavios X factor final manchester x factor https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/12/x-factor-final-in-manchester Mon, 10 Dec 2012 16:21:50 GMT
Snow is Falling https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/12/snow-is-falling A trip into the Peak District this week showed just how cold it has been.  No real snow where I live, but a mere few miles, and a touch of elevation, and the temperature has dropped like a stone.

First Snows
First Snows

It's been good to get out though, after so much work on this month - and though this post is brief.... it's made me remember why I love photography so much.  It's the getting out and doing it.  I could never be an 'armchair photographer', one of those who say, "I'd love to get a shot like that" - well the answer to that is, you can..... you just have to get off your backside, and get out and shoot it....  Enjoy the weather.........

Higger Tor

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) National Park Peak District Snow Winter cold https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/12/snow-is-falling Sat, 08 Dec 2012 16:16:46 GMT
Back to the birds https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/11/back-to-the-birds Last week - I was invited to a bird hide set deep in the depths of practically no-where.... it was a lovely morning - and just for once the rain held off.

It was a great morning to be out - soft light, loads of birds, and some splendid shots....

Loved this chap for the aggression he was showing... get out of my territory !  So small yet so feisty.

Good to see a Nutthatch make an appearance too

And a female great spotted woodpecker..... all in all a great day out....

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) Wild Places birds bluetit hide nature nutthatch photography wildlife woodpecker https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/11/back-to-the-birds Tue, 06 Nov 2012 10:29:55 GMT
The 2012 Deer Rut https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/11/the-2012-deer-rut Every year I try to get pictures of the stag rut - and every year, I come back with super images of deer, but not of them fighting.  I dream of seeing two huge stags scrapping away, preferably on the brow of a hill, with a dramatic sunset going on behind them; and one of these years I'm going to get my dream shot.

In the meantime, I'm plodding all over the place to get the best I can, and this week, although I didn't get them fighting, I did get shots of Fallow Deer Calf born this summer - looking like Bambi...

In Britain, the Red deer rut peaks in October, though does usually kick off in September. The male Red deer are fighting for supremacy, to allow them to control and mate with the largest harem. The best time to see the rut is, as with most wildlife spectacles, early morning and evening, but don't get too close as the males can be very aggressive at this time of year.

The fallow deer rut peaks a week or two later than the Red deer, but is also definitely worth a watch. Fallow deer can be found in most counties in England and Wales, and there are large populations in pockets spread across Scotland. Young fallow start breeding when they are about 18 months old. The mating season, or rut, starts in late September and peaks in mid October. Usually, the doe gives birth to a single fawn between late May - mid June. The fawn is weaned by October.

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) Derbyshire Fallow Deer autumn nature red deer rut wild wildlife https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/11/the-2012-deer-rut Fri, 02 Nov 2012 12:03:51 GMT
Shooting the London Fashion Weekend https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/10/shooting-the-london-fashion-weekend

Thanks to the team at Canon CPS, I was able to travel to London recently, to shoot the London Fashion Weekend at Somerset House to shoot catwalks from the photographers pit.

It was a fantastic experience, and producing a great set of cohesive images was a challenge to say the least.  Canon were superb, and their briefing was very useful, especially to those of us who had not shot professional catwalks before.  Shooting was all hand held, (no tripods or monopods allowed) so shutter speeds had to be upwards of 1/500th second.  We were told in advance that the lighting would be set to 3200Kelvin, and so adjusting our white balance to take this into account meant that every shot was correct.

A flashgun wasn't essential for this shoot, as the catwalk was so well lit, but some photographers did use one to lift the light a little under the model's hat, and to add some catchlights.

The challenge was to get the models in focus, all the time, so using the 'Servo' setting was essential.  Although the models were not moving that quickly, they were moving faster than I expected, and the pause at the end of the runway, was only for a few seconds.  It was great to have time to be creative, and to experiment with different types of shots....

Achieving great compositions was difficult, as we only had the one chance to get it right - no-one was going to repeat anything for us, and so it was shoot it or lose it.

All in all it was a great shoot, and I offer many thanks to Canon, and to Vodafone for the experience.

To see more shots from the Fashion Weekend - please click HERE

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/10/shooting-the-london-fashion-weekend Tue, 09 Oct 2012 12:58:53 GMT
From Photographs to Paintings https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/8/from-photographs-to-paintings Some two years ago - I met a lady called Diane Huxley.  I was out with the dog, and my camera, and we fell to talking, as you do.  She told me that she was a local artist, who painted animals - mostly pets, and was looking to paint more birds; but was having some small difficulty getting good images to paint from.

After some further talk, I said that I would send her some of my bird images for her to look at, which I did - and then - to my embarrassment, forgot all about it.....

Fast forward those 24 odd months, and she sent me an email to say that two pictures had been completed.  I've been trying to track down the original photo files, and have only found one (though I've not looked on my backup drives  yet to be honest)

Here's the first, of a heron, taken at Reddish Vale Country Park

And below, is a copy of her painting of the same bird

I did also send her a photograph of a white tailed fish eagle, taken at our local bird of prey centre - and whilst I have photographed this particular bird on a number of occasions, I can't quite track down the original file - I'll post it when I can - but in the meantime here is her wonderful painting.

Diane has her own website - http://www.animal-portrait.co.uk/

The detail is amazing, and the paintings attest to her great talent.  Have a look at her site - she comes highly recommended.

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) Diane Huxley Diane Seddon art artist birds canvas images nature paintings photography wildlife https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/8/from-photographs-to-paintings Tue, 28 Aug 2012 13:38:48 GMT
The Harvest Mouse https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/8/the-harvest-mouse

Despite the fact that these are known as the Harvest Mouse (or Micromys minutus), they are likely to be found in hedgerows and gardens all year round.

It is the smallest rodent in Britain, weighing in at just around 6g, and came to be called the Harvest Mouse, as it was most commonly seen around the time that fields were harvested.

The mice generally live around field edges, in hedgerows, and in the crops - but they do not cause any damage - they are so small, and eat so little - that the farmer should not notice.

The Harvest Mouse has a prehensile tail, which is about the same length as its own body. It can be used to hold onto things like the stems of corn or oats -

They don't live long - about 18 months, but in that time they reproduce frequently.  The female is pregnant for only about 17 days, and gives birth to anything up to 8 young - and they can do this 7 or 8 times in a breeding cycle.  The babies leave the nest within a few days, and become independent.

They are the most beautiful mammals - and I hope to get back and photograph them again sometime soon.


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) Corn Field Harvest Mouse Nature Oat Field Wild Places Wildlife cute mammal photography https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/8/the-harvest-mouse Thu, 16 Aug 2012 16:30:15 GMT
Lytham Proms 2012 https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/8/lytham-proms-2012 Over the last weekend, I was able to shoot the Lytham Proms, held each year on Lytham Green, just outside Blackpool.  It was a fantastic experience to be able to shoot such giants as Alfie Boe, Olly Murs and Diana Vickers, as well as the Lytham Community Choir.

The weather on Saturday night was mixed, but even as the rain hurled down, the voice of Alfie Boe made you forget the water running down the back of your neck.

You can just about make out the rain to the bottom left of the shot.  Despite all that, the sun shone, and though I've not got a photo of it, there was a wonderful rainbow, that arced from the sea, over the Lytham Windmill, and onwards.  Alfie remarked that it was a great light show, that had been set up..

Next night was Olly Murs, and the whole demographic of the evening changed.  Lots of  young people, all screaming their heads off for Olly.  He was a true professional, with so much energy - and lots of time for his young fans.

The full set of images can be found by clicking HERE

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) Coast Diana Vickers Fylde Lytham Lytham Proms Olly Murs alfie boe concert entertainment music https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/8/lytham-proms-2012 Thu, 09 Aug 2012 10:06:06 GMT
Peak District Magic https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/7/peak-district-magic I live on the borders of the Peak District - and have done for many years - but it seems that only in the last 3 or 4 of those years, have I actually started to look around more.  Why is it that you don't look on your own doorstep so much, but feel you have to travel to another County, or even another Country to get those spectacular images.

The Peak District has been photographed to death, to the point where I reckon there are tripod holes in the 'best' places.  Having said that, it's not been photographed by ME, and so I've been making every effort to get out there and shoot, and this at stupid times of day, but when the light is at its best.

So - one morning towards the end of July - we arose from bed at 2.45 in the morning - having seen what looked like a reasonable weather forecast - it had been cool overnight, but dry, and the morning was set fair....   mist was intermittent as we headed off - and by the time we arrived at Calver, and Curbar village, the fog was really thick - we started the climb to Curbar Edge, and climbed out of the cloud inversion - what we saw was incredible...

I have never seen such a sight in the Peaks for a long time - Sometimes you have to forget the images, and just enjoy the view... Once we turned around though, we saw what was happening on Froggat Edge

The sun was just starting to come up - sunrise scheduled for 5.10am, with a hint of pink in the sky, it was just amazing.

The last shot for this blog is one I took of my better half, with the dog, shooting into the sun along the back of the edge.... a truly amazing morning.


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) Curbar Edge DSLR Dawn Derbyshire Peak District Thoughts Wild Places drama landscape morning photography https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/7/peak-district-magic Tue, 31 Jul 2012 08:38:13 GMT
Key 103 Live 2012 https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/7/Key-103-Live-2012 Last night saw the Key 103 Live event at the MEN Arena in Manchester – it was great that I could be part of this event, and gain access to the pit area of the arena to get images of the artists on stage. 

Much hard work, very hot, and VERY loud.  Me armed with ear defenders that I used to use when going clay pigeon shooting – made me look pretty silly, but I came away with my hearing intact. 

It’s exhausting work, but more than worthwhile – many thanks to the MEN Arena Staff, and the guys and girls from Key 103, for making this such a great event.  It was run with military precision – well done.

the rest of the images can be found by clicking HERE


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) "Alyssa Reid" "DJ Fresh" "Key 103 Live" "Key 103" "Little Mix" "MEN Arena" "Talo Cruz" "Will Young" Dressing up Labrinth MEN Arena Press and PR Tulisa camera celebrities manchester music musicals portraits theatre https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/7/Key-103-Live-2012 Mon, 23 Jul 2012 03:43:54 GMT
More Welsh Wetness… https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/7/More-Welsh-Wetness Quite apart from the glorious trip to Skomer a few weeks ago, the other parts of the week away were just as good.  A trip to the red kite feeding station yielded some excellent images – with the birds picking up not only from the bank but from the water too.

They are fast, and it took considerable time to get the birds exactly as I wanted them.  The day being overcast, but without rain did actually help, as the light was good – very bright, but beautifully diffused with the overhead cloud.

Sometimes the rain and the damp of England can be a blessing.

Hopefully more to follow.

[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) "Red kite" Bird behaviour Birds DSLR Thoughts Wild Places animals birds damp flight food glorious trip landscape nature outdoors overcast photography rain red kite feeding station skomer travel wales water weather wildlife https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/7/More-Welsh-Wetness Wed, 11 Jul 2012 14:55:00 GMT
A Wet Week in Wales https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/6/A-Wet-Week-in-Wales We’ve returned from what was probably the wettest break we’ve ever been on.  I’ve never known rain quite like it, but I suppose that this is what keeps England forever green.  Weather notwithstanding, we headed out every day for wildlife, and birds in particular.

Up towards the North for Kites, Mid Wales for Falcons, and out to the Island of Skomer for the Puffins. Skomer is a 2.92 km² island off the coast of southwest Wales, one of a chain lying within a kilometre off the Pembrokeshire coast and separated from the mainland by the treacherous waters of Jack Sound. Skomer Island measures approximately 2.4 km (1.5 mi) north-south and 3.2 km (2 mi) east-west. We visited on a wet (predicably) and very windy day, with lots of cloud, which ironically is ideal for puffin photography, and with the winds being high, it was ideal for getting them in flight.

The high winds also made landing difficult, and so some birds were forced to land where they could, and then make a frantic scurry to their holes – sometimes, as in the image above, making quite a long run before arriving home safely with their catch of fish.

If you’ve never been to Skomer, it comes highly recommended.  Get the earliest boat out that you can, so you can maximise your stay.  Ours was cut short somewhat due to the high winds, and the boat back was early afternoon to get everyone off the island before the really bad weather set in.

More on this trip in another blog post.


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) "Fratercula arctica" "Sea birds" Bird behaviour Birds DSLR animals birds coast fish humour island islands nature photography puffin running sea silly o'clock skomer wales wildlife https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/6/A-Wet-Week-in-Wales Mon, 25 Jun 2012 14:57:00 GMT
The Jubilee Weekend… https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/6/The-Jubilee-Weekend Well, what a weekend that turned out to be – with rain, hail and wind on Sunday, and a glorious day on the Sunday….. The street parties carried on regardless, with brollies used whilst the wine was washed down.  Our local party attracted over 1000 people, all bringing their own chairs, and consuming lots of food, including a whole hog, which was roasting from aound 3am, and being served up some hours later.

Everyone had a cracking good time, and the village is even talking about repeating the event next year – We don’t need an excuse for a party here at home.

As you can see, despite the weather, warm smiles abounded, and I just loved this ladies glasses – hmm, wonder where I could get a pair?


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) "diamond jubilee" "marple bridge" Dressing up Thoughts charity cold happy hog humour jubilee manchester parade party photography rain smiles social networks stockport vacation warm smiles https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/6/The-Jubilee-Weekend Fri, 08 Jun 2012 15:01:00 GMT
Mother Cap https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/5/Mother-Cap Just above Millstone Edge, on Hathersage Moor, in the Peak District lies Mother Cap.  It’s a place I visited in the winter with a couple of photography friends, and I had an image in mind ever since.  Today, I woke up early, and with an unmitigated amount of enthusiasm.  It was 2.45am….

My other half, stuffy with sleep, actually agreed to come out with me, but when I said “well, lets go then”, I though he was going to just turn over and ignore me.  However, by 3am, we were up and about, with a confused dog, who wondered why breakfast was coming in the middle of the night – by 3.20 we were on the road, and by 4am we arrived at the Surprise View Car Park (gosh, I wonder why we were the only car there……?)  The hike up to Mother Cap was easy, and although it wasn’t cold, there was a stiff breeze.  Dawn was timed for 4.50 – but it was actually 5.05 before the light got over the hills, and onto the rocks.

Mother Cap at Dawn

Millstones on the Edge

Silhouette before Dawn

Poppy on the Rocks

It was so good to be out and about so early – not another soul in sight – and although we know the day is setting out to be another hot one – we had the coolest time, the greatest light, and a second breakfast when we got home.

Time for a nap me-thinks…..


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) "Peak District National Park" "mother cap" "silly o , dawn, derbyshire, dog, early, hathersage, landscape, morning, nature, "peak district", people, photography, poppy, travel DSLR Derbyshire Peak District Thoughts Wild Places clock" https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/5/Mother-Cap Sun, 27 May 2012 02:40:56 GMT
The BUPA Great Manchester Run – 2012 https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/5/The-BUPA-Great-Manchester-Run-2012 Sunday May 20th – dawned bright, with a touch of cloud – an excellent day for the runners in the BUPA Great Manchester 10K run.  With world class competitors, as well as the 40,000 other runners, it was set to be a brilliant day.

We had started our photography on the Friday before, with an opportunity to shoot some of the main competitors – including Haile Gebrselassie, Sanya Richards-Ross, Holly Bleasdale, Andy Turner, Mara Yamauchi, and Patrick Makau Musyoki.  The track was still being built along Deansgate, but the runners threw themselves into the spirit of the games, and of the construction…

Haile and Patrick really got into the spirit of the games.

On race day itself Haile Gebrselassie showed with a fifth victory achieved in a pulsating 2012 World leading time, of 27 minutes 39 seconds.  The 39-year-old eased alongside a vintage pack of world class rivals which included Patrick Makau the Kenyan who took away his world marathon record in Berlin last autumn, plus his own fellow Ethiopian’s Tsegay Kebede and Ayele Abshero before stretching the pace. Haile took the lead early, and never faltered..

The start of the Men’s Elite Race – BUPA 10K – Manchester

Gebrselassie’s dominant run where he passed through the half distance in 13:31

Haile takes an early lead

Haile later said that for once the Manchester weather was good to him….. what a race..

Haile in a clear lead at 6K

The 10K race was followed by the Poweraid games, for which more images will follow, in another post.

It was great to be in the lead truck, in front of the mens race throughout the whole 10K, and though it was a bit of a rough ride, the images were worth it… well done Haile… and congratulations Manchester.

Many thanks to the organisers, who did such a good job on the day.


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) "Great Run" "Haile "Summer of Sport" 10K BUPA Gebrselassie" PR Press and PR celebrities champion competitions manchester photography portraits press run running sport winner https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/5/The-BUPA-Great-Manchester-Run-2012 Sat, 26 May 2012 06:13:27 GMT
Manchester Guide Dogs for the blind…. https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/5/Manchester-Guide-Dogs-for-the-blind

The team with Titan – left to right Eric Steele, Sam Johnstone, David De Gea, Kay Kelly, Ben Amos, and Anders Lindegaard

Manchester United goalkeepers once again sponsored a  guide dog for Manchester Guide dogs.

Goalkeeping coach Eric Steele explained how money collected from fines for the keepers for incidents including being late for the gym, a team meeting and forgetting to wear a club tie, has been put towards the cost of sponsoring a guide dog puppy and paying for its training with The Guide Dogs for the Blind Association.

Steele joined Sam Johnstone David De Gea, Ben Amos, and Anders Lindegaard in posing for a photo with Titan the puppy at the training ground.

Titan the Labrador, Retriever Cross puppy

“We decided to put all the fines together and put the money towards a worthy cause,” Eric said, “It costs £5,000 for the sponsorship and training and it takes 12-14 months for a puppy to be trained up so we’ll be following its progress. It’s a great cause to be involved with.”

United Manager Sir Alex Fergusson was on hand – and it was great that he agreed to be involved in the shoot.

Sir Alex Fergusson with Titan and his puppy walker Kay Kelly

Oaktree photography was pleased to donate the shoot to the Guide Dog society.

We already sponsor a puppy, and so it was fantastic to be involved in this.


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) "Training ground" "manchester united" "puppy walker" Carrington Dogs Goalkeepers Press and PR blind celebrities dogs football manchester photography presentations sport training https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/5/Manchester-Guide-Dogs-for-the-blind Fri, 18 May 2012 06:54:45 GMT
Keep it Up – for SoccerAid – With Dan Magness https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/5/Keep-it-Up-for-SoccerAid-With-Dan-Magness On Friday 11th May, Manchester United held a photocall on the Old Trafford pitch to celebrate a new World Record set by Dan Magness, who has walked from London to Manchester doing ‘keepy-uppys’ all the way, as part of ‘Keep it up for Soccer Aid’

Soccer Aid is a celebrity football match, held at Old Trafford (and broadcast live on ITV1) on May 27th, raising money for UNICEF’s vital work for children.

Manchester United is hosting Soccer Aid and is delighted to celebrate Dan’s amazing feat. The Manchester United Foundation has supported UNICEF for thirteen years now and the United for UNICEF partnership has raised more than £2 million to date helping over 2.2 million children.

Dan’s ‘Keep it Up for Soccer Aid’ challenge has encouraged the public to take up their own challenges and ended on the pitch in Old Trafford, home of Manchester United which will also host Soccer Aid on May 27th.

Dan’s finale also coincides with an announcement by the government (DFID) that they will match all funds raised from the public as part of Soccer Aid 2012.

Mr Magness started his 200 mile journey from Wembley Stadium on Tuesday 1st May completing the equivalent of almost a marathon a day with an estimated 400,000 steps and doing an estimated half million keepy uppys along the way.

Launched by Robbie Williams in 2010,  ‘Keep it Up for Soccer Aid’ calls on the UK public to keep something up and get sponsored to do so in the run up to Soccer Aid, ITV1’s celebrity football match at Old Trafford on  Sunday May 27th, which raises money for UNICEF’s life-saving work for children around the world.


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) "Dan Magness" "Keep it up for Soccer Aid" "Keepy-uppies" "Soccer Aid" "manchester united" DSLR Press and PR UNICEF ball celebrities charity children around the world football manchester mile journey soccer sport sports training undefined united foundation https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/5/Keep-it-Up-for-SoccerAid-With-Dan-Magness Fri, 11 May 2012 08:36:32 GMT
Photography and the Law – Shopping Centres https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/5/Photography-and-the-Law-Shopping-Centres I was asked this week by a client to shoot some images of a shopping centre.  This was an outdoor (mostly) centre, privately owned, and managed by a separate management company based on the site.

In general, under the laws of the United Kingdom, you cannot prevent photography of private property from a public place, and in general you will need permission to take photographs on private land.  Landowners are permitted to impose any conditions they like upon entry to a property, such as forbidding or restricting photography.  The usual restrictions are in respect of photography for commercial purposes.

In this case, I had to seek permission to shoot the images.  I started on site, in the centre, with no idea where to go.  Seeing a couple of policemen having a chat, I decided to ask them where the management offices were.  One of them, kindly took me through to the management suite, hidden away behind all the shops, and the staff here referred me on to the landlords agents, who were based in Manchester.

The agents were great, and were just looking to ensure that the images taken did not show the centre in a bad light.. a phone call to confirm that all was well, and back to the centre to pick up a visitor pass.  Security were advised that I was on site, and that I was shooting with full permission… and we were away.  Shots done in a couple of hours and back to the office to process the images.

As photographers, we need to know where we stand in relation to copyright and trespass.  As a rule of thumb, provided you have permission (if on private property) or you are photographing a subject which is on public land, then there should be no restrictions.

Photographers are being challenged more and more by police, and security guards, as well as members of the public.  Although personally, I have never been approached, other than in a a friendly, conversational way, I do know of photographers who have been dealt with harshly – and told that they cannot take images.

There are some great resources on the web – one in particular UK Photographers Rights

Overall, I find that if you are polite, follow the rules, and are considerate of property belonging to others, there is generally not a problem.

Many thanks to GVA Manchester for their permission to shoot on behalf of Stockport Tourist Information.

I’d be interested to hear your thoughts and experiences…..


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) "private property" DSLR Merseyway Press and PR Stockport advertising business camera landscape people photography photoshop precinct shopping stockport tourism tourist travel https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/5/Photography-and-the-Law-Shopping-Centres Sat, 05 May 2012 07:47:58 GMT
Wildlife – Birds at RSPB https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/4/Wildlife-Birds-at-RSPB On a very rare sunny day (and they are rare at the moment) – we made the most of it and headed out to the RSPB site at Southport – and were rewarded with some great images of Avocet, Redshank, Oystercatcher, and Godwit.  Not bad for a first visit.  Once the weather improves (if it ever does) we’ll be out there again.

We were exited to see the Avocet, on her nest, guarding four eggs… the couple swapped over every half hour or so, allowing the one  not on the nest to  stretch, preen and feed.

The Avocet is the emblem of the RSPB and symbolises the bird protection movement in the UK more than any other species. Its return in the 1940s and subsequent increase in numbers represents one of the most successful conservation and protection projects.

It was fascinating to see them mate, after a very short display from the female.

More images to follow once I’ve processed them……  thanks for looking, please take a moment to pass a comment…


[email protected] (Diane Seddon AFIAP CPAGB BPE3) "Water Birds" Avocet Bird behaviour Birds DSLR Eggs Marsh RSPB Seaside Southport Thoughts Wild Places animals arts cars coast illustration landscape mating nature outdoors photography reproduction sea sex transportation travel water weather wildlife https://www.dseddonphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/4/Wildlife-Birds-at-RSPB Wed, 25 Apr 2012 07:22:19 GMT