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June - September 2022

Updated: Feb 19, 2023

A busy summer!

Sitting on the train, heading towards Paddington, I’m reminded that it’s exactly a year since I joined Adrian in the business. What a year it has been- filled with adventure, challenge, new experiences, lessons learned and enriching connections with clients and colleagues. There has been the added pleasure of seeing many of those connections develop into friendships. We are travelling to London for Adrian’s Light and Land workshops at the end of this week, but for once we have managed to also plan in some free time of our own and are looking forward to meeting up with some of our client-friends for some photographic exploration of areas that we know less well and some socialising.

Summer Activities

It's been a busy summer for us both. I’ve been caught up in exam marking – a remnant of my ‘old life’, which consumed rather more time than usual. That commitment meant an enforced break in running our own residential workshops, but Adrian has, of course, filled the time with lots of on-line work – both 1 to 1 and group workshops. Nik collection was very popular, filling up twice. Adrian also trialled a new offering – Photoshop for iPad. The response was very positive, and it is certainly something that will be added to the regular menu of courses that we offer.

In June, we managed to get away for a short ‘proper holiday’. 6 days grabbed in between jobs, allowed us to get away to Kos for some much-needed relaxation. Before we set off, there was a last-minute rush to get two of Adrian’s large prints frames and delivered to the Burton Gallery in Bideford for the Westward Ho! And Bideford Art Society (‘WHOBID’) summer exhibition. Framing the two A1 prints was certainly a challenge for our novice framing skills, but after the set-back of managing to break one piece of glass in the final step of fitting, we were thrilled with the end results. This year was the 100th anniversary of WHOBID and the first year that photography has been allowed in their exhibition – Adrian’s persistence might had had something to do with this! It was great to see the pictures safely delivered and beautifully hung in the gallery.

Besides printing his own work, Adrian has also run print workshops over the summer. In July, after a swift change of plan, we welcomed photographers to our studio at Kingsdown for a relocated Light and Land Print Workshop. August included both virtual and face to face print workshops, run with Rachael Talibart. It’s always a thrill to see the edited prints roll off the printers….

Earlier in the year, Rachael had expressed an interest in exploring book making and so, following on from their successful print workshop, Adrian and Rachael worked with me to deliver a new f11 workshop – Handmade Books. We had a super group of 8 enthusiastic and talented photographers, who each managed to make their own unique Leporello bound book by the end of the two-day workshop. We already have the beginner’s course and a follow-on, part 2, pencilled into our diaries for next year.

The end of August continued to be busy with both Adrian and I preparing for our next local residential workshops. Next week, Adrian will be running his ‘Black Arts Workshop’, finally seeing an idea that was sparked 3 years ago come to fruition. His preparations included a very pleasant afternoon spent as a student to Al Brown. Al taught Adrian the basics of creating a watercolour using ‘Bideford Black’ – a pigment dug from our local cliffs. We were all impressed with what Adrian managed to achieve even in a relatively short amount of time. Al is clearly an excellent teacher!

Coming soon...

The month ahead is packed – pretty much non-stop from here on. First ‘Black Arts’, then Adrian has a rather special ‘big birthday’ in September so we will be heading off to Paris for a celebration (which will of course include visiting some of the intriguing photogenic locations that Adrian has been busy researching!) Immediately after our return, Paul Sanders will be joining us once again to run our 2nd ‘Image and Word’ – Part 1’. Adrian has just released dates for our final 'Image and Word - Part 1' for 2022, which will run in December. Some places are still available. For details follow the link.

We now also have dates booked in for ‘Image and Word – Part 2’. The first of which will be happening in March next year. Message Adrian to be added to the wait list if you are interested.

We still have a space available on another new workshop for this year – Newcastle in Black and White. Follow the link for details.

Tech Notes from Adrian

Beware: Apple OS update and Adobe Max

Apple is just about to release Ventura for the Mac. If your system is set to auto-update then you will be updated automatically. If you are the adventurous type then enjoy the ride, otherwise do as I have and disable auto-update (system preferences>Software Update) . There are inevitably issues with the first release of any operating system, sadly colour management is often a victim. I try and stay one OS behind.

Adobe has its MAX annual conference in October. Last year they released some fantastic updates for Photoshop and Lightroom. Unfortunately, it took a while before they worked and many people found that Lightroom didn’t work at all. Again, I have disabled auto-update for my Adobe products. Click Creative Cloud, click the symbol top right (mine has my picture but yours might just be a blue triangle), then click Apps and switch-off Auto-update.

…so when should you update?

MacOS I have tried to stay one OS behind. That means updating to Monterey BEFORE they release Ventura. That way Monterey should be as good as its going to get. While updating your computer is usually problem free, it is not guaranteed to work without problems. Make sure that Time Machine has done a backup before you update.

Adobe products, I usually wait for the “dot one” release. That means they have fixed the biggest problems. However, if you cannot wait it is easy to return to an earlier version. Use Creative cloud and click the “…” for the product you want to restore and click other versions. In the screen that appears, click install on the previous version.

Just remember that the update process is likely to have updated your catalogue, so you may lose any edits you did with the updated version. You can always export a DNG of files you have worked on and import them again later once the bugs are fixed.

Nik Collection 5

I was about to deliver my Nik Collection workshop when version 5 arrived. We were only a week from the workshop date, but we had to go ahead with version 5 as the demo version had been updated and some keen clients has taken the update too.

It was very buggy; it crashed multiple times and even caused my laptop to restart. Fortunately zoom is very tolerant and I was able re-join the meeting quickly. Despite several updates, it remains buggy, especially on a PC.

Is it worth updating? Yes… but.

I hate the very dark interface and the way the preset panels have been changed; it feels very clunky. However, I like the updates to the U-point tech and I really like that the panels on the right in Silver Efex are now fully open. Hopefully, more people will discover the real power of the software and not rely so much on presets.

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