Headshot #2 / Facial Expressionism / Final Major Project / Jonathan McCartney

Following on from the first set of headshot photographs I took of my good friend, Jonathan McCartney, I present to you the second headshot photographs I took of my friend, Jonathan, but this time, with a black backdrop, which I must say actually works much better compared to a white backdrop, and the black backdrop was an idea a close friend of mine suggested to me after he critiqued the Headshot #1 photographs I took of Jonathan.

These headshot photographs have not only improved my photography skills, but it does make a lot of sense to use a black backdrop in these photographs, including any other photographs that I will produce.

I have made sure to experiment carefully with these photographs by editing them in WordFoto and GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) so that they can retain the facial expressions I asked Jonathan to make, as these headshot photographs tie in with my Facial Expressionism Final Major Project, including the research I have done so far on the Facial Expressionism photographers, Fazal Sheikh and Irving Penn.

Below are the Headshot #2 photographs of my friend, Jonathan.

Just like before, I have edited these photographs with WordFoto and used more than one word on one of the edited photographs shown below.

I have made sure to develop the photographs further by also changing the selected photographs to black and white whilst raising and lowering some of the curves on the photographs so that the lighting on Jonathan brings out his facial expressions better with a sense of depth and detail.

Overall, I am absolutely pleased with the end result that has come out of these photographs, and being critiqued on my work has actually helped me to develop my photography skills better, not just from receiving peer critique whilst in my Film & Photography lesson, but also from receiving critique from a close friend of mine.

The Headshot #2 photographs I have taken of my friend, Jonathan McCartney, including the edited versions of these photographs that I produced in WordFoto and GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) can be found in my E-Folio.

I would love to get your feedback on these photographs and please let me know what improvements I can make for when I produce more Facial Expressionism headshot photographs for next time. Your feedback is greatly appreciated.

Alex Smithson

Nature is Beautiful.

Nature is absolutely beautiful. The Spring weather continues to amaze us and with a small breeze in the air with the lovely sunny weather, it’s safe to say that this weather is beautiful and that nature is also beautiful.

I used the Camera+ app to photograph the Rose Bush again, and then I made some small edits to this photograph to give the rose-bush more of a friendly approach so that it rings true to the lovely and traditional Spring weather.

Do you love the Spring weather? I’d love to know. Please feel free to comment below. I would love to hear what you think of this wonderful weather :-).

Alex Smithson

CROYDON / REVISITED

Kicking off 2017 with a bang, I decided to revisit the photographic collection I took on the 15th December 2016 by publishing this more up-to-date collection that will revisit Croydon with more of a positive approach and given the lovely weather in my first few weeks back at Croydon College, I couldn’t have picked a better time to take these photographs. Some of these photographs consist of the Pret a Manger & Caffé Nero, including other parts of Croydon I may have not visited in a while.

I also used the opportunity to snap a few photos of Reeves Corner, considering it is more or less quiet now considering it will be six years in August since the riots took place in Croydon, which saw the bigger half of the Reeves Furniture Store being burned down as a result.

I must admit, I was taken aback by just how quiet it was around Reeves Corner, because I last went down to Reeves Corner two years ago when I was studying Art & Design, and even then it did feel uncomfortable, much like it does now.

I want this photographic collection to help you explore what Croydon is like as a place, including how Croydon is in general. For instance, there are so many stores in Croydon that you cannot exactly miss, including banks, landmarks, restaurants etc. and many more.

As I was lucky to snap these photographs when the lovely weather arrived before the slight snow storm, I was pleased to have achieved much better results this time compared to the previous collection and I wanted to make sure that you saw Croydon from a much better perspective than before.

If you enjoyed this photographic collection of Croydon, please feel free to let me know. I would love to hear your feedback.

Alex Smithson

Recommended App: Camera+

Apple Watch Sport: Your Get Up & Go Daily Exercise Watch and Why the Apple Watch Sport Edition is Beneficial for You. (38MM)

As Apple released their first ever Apple Watch last year, I thought it would be nice to review the Apple Watch Sport considering I brought it a short time ago. With Apple’s first iteration becoming a part of the watch industry, the Apple Watch has been able to help those who own the Apple Watch Sport, the standard Apple Watch, the Apple Watch Edition and the Hermés version of the Apple Watch have the ability to track the person’s Activity in terms of exercise, steps taken, not to forget the amount of calories it tracks that you burn off over the course of 24 hours.

Having owned the 38MM 7000 Series Edition of the Apple Watch Sport for over a month now, I absolutely enjoy the things it can do. In this instance, I can play/pause music and skip or go back to the previous track, no matter whether I’m using the official Music app or even the Equaliser Music Application, TuneShell. TuneShell is like the Music app, but comes with the ability to use an equaliser, including being able to listen to previews of songs from the iTunes Store, not to forget to mention the ability to listen to songs or remixes through SoundCloud.

The things I can also do with the Apple Watch is that I can turn the volume of my iPhone up or down and as the Remote app comes bundled with the Apple Watch, this means I can turn the volume on my iTunes library up and down as well, including the ability to skip certain songs, including being able to play and pause.

The Activity app is the most beneficial way of keeping track of your health, as well as the amount of calories you burn off, the duration of time you spend exercising, including the amount of hours you stand. Bundled with the Activity app is Workout. Workout comes with a range of exercises you can use, which are:

  • Outdoor Walk
  • Outdoor Run
  • Outdoor Cycle
  • Indoor Walk
  • Indoor Run
  • Indoor Cycle
  • Elliptical
  • Rower
  • Stair Stepper
  • Other (If you’re planning on creating your own exercise regime that you can work with).

The ability to be notified of a text message, tweet, status update or even a notification, including being notified of progress updates by the Activity app with Prominent Haptics is a bonus, as this means I never miss out on a single thing. Gone are the days where I would have to keep taking my iPhone out of my pocket each time there was a notification, now I can raise my wrist to see the most recent notification available, including the time and also the amount of battery I have left before charging the device. This also includes being able to raise my wrist to track my activity, in terms of exercise minutes, standing hours and also the overall amount of calories that have been burned off each and every day.

The ability to track my heart rate (BPM – Beats Per Minute), including being able to track my activity, as well as being able to find out the latest updates on the weather forecast with Glances helps me to stay productive throughout the day and is beneficial for you in mind, as this can help you to keep yourself on top of the things that keep you productive throughout each and every single day.

What other kind of functions/abilities work with the Apple Watch?

It has a large range of functions you can use, such as Maps, Calendar, the Weather app and even the Camera app. The Camera app is bundled with the Apple Watch and even has the ability for you to take the perfect photo without you needing to hold on to your iPhone. All you have to do is press a button on the Apple Watch to take a photo and it even comes with a 3-second countdown timer that allows you to get the best group photo or group photos you want without your photo or photos becoming compromised.

There’s a lot of fun to be had when it comes to the Apple Watch, because if any friends of yours have an Apple Watch as well, you can send sketches to your friends, even taps and also your own heartbeat, which are just a few of the ways you can communicate. With Emojis, Apple allow you to send your friends your own customisable Emoji expression just by adjusting the emoji’s expression with the digital crown. This is also beneficial, because if you wanted to send your friends an Emoji that you customised and they didn’t have an Apple Watch, they will still be able to respond and even send the same Emoji back with their iPhone’s, their iPad’s or even with the use of an iPod touch. As I said, there is a lot of fun to be had with the Apple Watch.

You can also switch up the standard Apple Watch straps for a massive range of different watch bands, as there are customised watch bands available on sale. For instance, the standard leather watch straps, including many other watch straps, such as the fluoroelastometer watch straps, the same type of material Apple use for their own standard watch straps for the Apple Watch Sport, the standard Apple Watch, including the Apple Watch Edition. If you’re someone who likes to dress casually for the occasion, there are a range of casual straps you can buy, and not only that, but you can also customise the Apple Watch with the Milanese Loop watch straps, which are available online and in other available store outlets. It’s amazing what you can do with the Apple Watch.

Other functions, such as the Weather app are useful, especially when you’re on the Watch screen, as it puts up the times for Sunrise and Sunset, and not only that, but the ability to take calls with the Apple Watch is a must-have for anyone as this means you can speak to a friend of yours directly from your Apple Watch if your iPhone isn’t nearby.

You can receive your usual notifications through Wi-Fi and Bluetooth on your Apple Watch if your iPhone is nearby and the best things that it’s capable of doing are being able to use any alarms from your iPhone to wake you up, and you even have the ability to keep track of the world clocks you have added in the iPhone’s Clock app on the Apple Watch.

The ability to add photos to your Watch is possible through the Apple Watch iPhone app, as you can choose which photo collection you want to synchronise and it will synchronise your chosen photo album to the Apple Watch.

Other features, such as the Wallet app comes bundled with the Apple Watch, which is useful because if you have added any credit cards, plane tickets, vouchers or even event tickets to the Wallet app on your iPhone, these will appear on your Apple Watch and all you have to do to get instant access to your Wallet on the Apple Watch is to double press the side button below the digital crown to bring your credit cards, plane tickets, vouchers and event tickets up. Another feature that is a part of the Apple Watch is the Stocks app, which, just like the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, can tell you what is currently happening in each stock market, from FTSE 100 to AAPL, even to GOOG and YHOO.

To top it all off, you can even customise your Apple Watch Face, which includes the ability to create a Watch Face from a photo album, including the ability to look at your emails from your Apple Watch, not to forget to mention being able to instantly install any compatible Watch apps that are compatible with your iPhone’s standard apps.

Overall, I absolutely love the Apple Watch, not just because of what it can do, but I feel it has helped me in the long run with the things I couldn’t do before that I can do now and I strongly believe this will help you if you’re someone who is looking to purchase the Apple Watch.

The Apple Watch Sport, the standard Apple Watch and the Apple Watch Edition are available in 38MM and 42MM and range in price. To find out more about the Apple Watch, you can click here. If you’re looking to buy an Apple Watch, you can buy one from the Apple Store and at many other store outlets, such as Currys & PC World, and even at other outlets, such as Argos, Very.co.uk and even Amazon.

If you enjoyed my technology review of the 38MM 7000 Series Edition of the Apple Watch Sport, then please feel free to submit feedback. All feedback is much appreciated.

Alex Smithson

Apple Watch Rating: 10/10

Performance: 10/10

Responsiveness: 10/10

Battery: 10/10

Overall Performance: 10/10

The Lovely Silhouette Sunset Shift.

As we had such lovely weather today, it was perfect to see a beautiful sunset taking place. I ceased the opportunity to take a photo of the sunset, but in turn, I also ended up creating a lovely silhouette sunset shift at the same time.

The last time I created a silhouette in a photograph was around September & October 2013, when I published the article: “The Silhouette of Darkness, Light & Wonderwebs”. That photograph was of a plant that hadn’t blossomed at all and had practically perished due to a lack of sunlight, given the bad weather we had that month of course. The plant in question was a rosebud, and because I used to use my old Samsung ST200F, that camera took that photograph of the rosebud, but it darkened the rosebud, which also made the sky around it look cloudy and dark like as if a thunderstorm was developing.

Below is the lovely silhouette sunset shift photograph I took earlier this evening, just as the sun was setting.

The Lovely Silhouette Sunset Shift.
The Lovely Silhouette Sunset Shift.

I must admit, I was pleased with how the final result of this photo had turned out. Please keep in mind though this photo was edited slightly in the Photos app as I wanted it to show the real appearance of the sunset, as well as the silhouette that the sunset created as well. I wanted to make sure this photo was exactly how I saw the sunset earlier this evening.

We’ve had lovely weather today, and I hope that this lovely weather we’ve had continues for the next few weeks before Summer starts.

If you loved this photograph I took of the lovely silhouette sunset shift, then please feel free to submit feedback. All feedback is much appreciated and if you enjoyed this article, please feel free to share this article around with everyone you know.

Alex Smithson