About this Blog

Photo Writing is the web version of the Photo Writing mini-magazine produced by Limephoto and Emil von Maltitz since 2010. As of 2015 it is now completely online. Feel free to browse through the articles and please leave comments in the comments section if you would like to engage with us.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Contemplating The Wall - Notes on a Brief Architecture Workshop

Like most of the work that I do I have accidentally gravitated towards particular genres or types of photography. It's probably my OCD and control-freak personality that have sidled me into the world of architectural photography. It actually came as a surprise when a few weeks ago a recognised Durban wedding photographer approached me to put together an architectural workshop for a small group of advanced photographers (thank you Heidi). My first thought was, 'I'm not an architectural photographer am I?" It was only after looking through recent architectural work for clients that it struck me that it has actually become one of my specialities. So to the workshop....

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Working with Muddied Light - Drakensberg Workshop

The Drakensberg like any other mountain, or for that matter anywhere in the world, varies seasonally with the type of light that the photographer is likely to encounter. Although winter can be extraordinary with thick blankets of crisp white snow covering the escarpment, it can also be dreary, hazy and flat in terms of lighting. This last weekend on a landscape workshop with African Impact was pretty much like the latter. No clouds, plenty of smoke in the air from the controlled burns and an infinity of haze. Does this mean you give up on the photography though? Hell no!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

5 Reasons why I love my job

5 Reasons why I love my job

A short while ago I wrote a blog post about some of the myths that revolve around professional photography (you can read it here). Anyone reading this would unsurprisingly wonder why on earth any sane person would want to become a professional photographer. Some journalists are motivated by a higher calling, in which case photography is really a means to an end (portraying what they might consider, ‘The Truth’). But what about the average photographer who is not trying to break a story to the inexhaustible press? The fact is, I adore my job and there are several other photographers that I speak to who feel the same of theirs. So as a counter to my earlier article on reasons why not to become a photographer, here are five arguments for the profession:

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Visualising the Image - Thanda Workshop

 Last week I was back in Thanda Game Reserve with African Impact to run their monthly photography workshop. It was a wonderful surprise to see two students from last year attending again. It's always great seeing familiar faces at these workshops and wonderful to see the difference between workshops in the skills and techniques that these photographers have learned (thanks to Chris and Richard for joining us again - see Mad Dogs and Englishmen Go Out in the Pouring Rain...).

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Post-Shoot Workflow

Working with students, it has often struck me how photographers, particularly those starting out, get bogged down in a discordant workflow that not only slows them down, but makes working with their images downright tedious. While recently reading a post on Lighting Essentials  by don Gianatti on systems, I realised how workflow is just another system. Scatalogical (as in illogical, not excrement obsessed) photographers like myself need to take heed of workflow otherwise serious photographic commitments suddenly turn into the first part of Yeats’ ‘The Second Coming’. To make sense of my post shoot workflow, I’ve broken it into steps that can be altered or made applicable to various different shooting scenarios (from photographing a sport’s day for a school to the desert in Namibia)

Step 1: On sitting down in front of a computer I ingest the cards that I have filled both to my computer and to an external hard drive. The second hard drive is a backup should anything happen to the primary drive. For art projects I tend to use Photo Mechanic for the ingest (I prefer the way that keywords are embedded in the NEF RAW files and the way that multiple RAW engines and their embedded jpegs can be used), but when I’m having to bash out images as quickly as possible to a client then I’ll use Lightroom as it’s likely the entire workflow will take place in this application.