Learning outcomes: 1.1, 1.2, 1.3

This week I was unable to get out and about within my exact postcode area as I had two requests for photographs from other people, however, I wasn’t far away.

The first ‘unusual’ challenge was from the Cattery where I volunteer. They wanted a photo of a particular cat reading the newspaper, with a mug and a pair of glasses next to him. The cat is a long stayer and they are trying to find him a home by getting him some coverage in the local newspaper. Luckily for me, the cat, Barnaby, was very obliging and here is a selection of the photographs I managed to take:


My second task was to photograph my friend’s daughter in the local park, so I guess these could be seen as being close enough to my house to qualify for the postcode project!


We wanted to get some nice portrait shots with some colour in the background as well as some action shots which involved using a faster shutter speed.

I mainly used a wide aperture for the photoshoot as I wanted to blur the background as there were so many nice colours.

In order to take some shots using a fast shutter speed, the subject jumped off a log and I attempted to photograph her in mid air. It worked but it’s not as sharp as I would have liked. I think I needed a faster shutter speed, but this would have meant increasing the ISO as the aperture was already as wide as it could be, and that would have resulted in more grain. Also, when she jumped, she moved forwards, so perhaps it is slightly out of focus and using the continuous focus setting may have helped. I took some bubbles along to give the photographs  bit more interest and with the hope of being able to freeze them using a fast shutter speed. Some of them came close to the camera and appear blurred so to resolve this, I should have used a narrower aperture.

I edited some of the photos afterwards in Photoshop, but this was mainly some slight cropping. I also experimented with converting photos to black and white and adding vignetting.

I’m generally pleased with the results as I’ve never done any portrait photography before but having reviewed the photos, they do seem to be a bit grainy and I wish that I’d used the flash a bit more. I need to develop more confidence in that area. The weather was a bit dull, and whilst the light levels were ok, that extra bit of flash may have brightened the photos a bit more, allowed me to use narrower apertures and faster shutter speeds and eliminated any grain and shadow on the face. I was using my Sony A7 camera with the 18 – 70mm kit lens. Some shots were taken on the A77ii with a 55-300mm lens.

The child’s parent has agreed to me using these photos as my homework.