The Blossoming Feels of Spring

Yesterday was such a wonderful day. It was nice and sunny and the temperature was just right, and I ceased the opportunity to photograph some parts of my garden. Mind you, it’s long overdue but I’ll be making sure to completely cut down my garden soon as it really needs to be cut. It’s like a forest. In terms of my garden, I did make sure to capture the beauty and essence of my garden with a forest-like approach and I had also made sure to experiment with the ISO frequently to see what ISO suited the lighting conditions best.

I am pleased with the end result I have received from these photographs, though I do feel that I need to improve better on taking photographs from a perspective where the scenery can be a mockup of a forest, but in a conceptual style that makes it more forest-like and not just as a plain garden that’s overgrown.

If you feel there are improvements I can make to my photography skills, please let me know. I would love to hear your feedback. All feedback is much appreciated.

Alex Smithson

Dulwich Park / Croydon School of Art / Curiosity / Self-Directed Project / 31.1.2017

Continuing on from my first set of photographs that I took previously at Kelsey Park, I headed to Dulwich Park to photograph the scenery and also some ducks and birds. I saw some Mallards and Parakeets whilst I was there, including some squirrels, though to tell you the truth, some of the squirrels I came across looked bigger than their usual size, so I did make sure to walk very slowly to photograph them and I am pleased with the end result that I have achieved from this photographic collection.

One of the Moor Hens actually came a lot closer than I expected, which was perfect for me as I was able to photograph the Moor Hen with such detail and visual imagery, and because I frequently changed the ISO on my Nikon D3300 DSLR, this allowed me to play about with the light balance, including the saturation of colour and clarity of the photos.

This photographic collection I have documented of Dulwich Park showcases my current knowledge and photography skills, based on the 5 photographers I have researched; Ansel Adams, David Muench, John Shaw, Art Wolfe & Joel Sartore.

I feel that I have managed to produce this nature-based photography collection of Dulwich Park to the best standard where possible, as I have made sure to change the ISO to suit the mood of each photograph, and I have also made sure that my photographs are in full focus and aren’t too overexposed but more or less balanced.

I have deliberately altered the ISO to make some of the photos appear as if they were taken right before the crack of nightfall, because I wanted to explore the concept of nature and its wilderness. Some of the photos I took that were quite dimmed I wanted to try and create my own inspired form of photography based on the BBC TV Programme, Planet Earth, as I remember the camera crew did record video footage using time-lapse but with the camera focusing entirely at the sky with the trees in the distance, which is what I wanted to try and recreate myself but with my own form of nature photography.

I have researched the 5 photographers above as part of my Self-Directed Curiosity Project and I strongly feel that their photography work has informed my creative knowledge including the processes I have developed for this photographic collection of Dulwich Park.

What are your thoughts on this photography collection I have created of Dulwich Park? I would love to hear your feedback.

Alex Smithson

© The Croydon College Logo & Croydon School of Art Logo are both copyright of Croydon College & Croydon School of Art. Permission has been granted for these logos to be used. No Copyright Infringement Intended.


Early yesterday morning and sometime during the afternoon when I was on my hour-long lunch break, I ceased the opportunity to snap a small set of photographs in and around Croydon as I arrived over an hour early before my 9:30 AM lesson time. I must admit, I used the Camera+ app again after a while, and I must say I have noticed a dramatic improvement in my photography skills, but at the same time, I’ve also noticed I can take better photographs than before.

The concept I have used here is how I want you to see Croydon, the urban area that is known for being one of the most graffitied places in London, but is also known for being one of the most artistic places in London, considering there are actual murals that were commissioned that would decorate Croydon in vibrant, bold and eye-catching colours.

The title of this photo-set has the obvious graffiti style to it, considering that graffiti can symbolise or be a certain work of art, or even the kind of graffiti where someone decides to leave their mark. Graffiti can also be a symbol for gangs, depending on what the story that piece of graffiti may carry.

How would I describe Croydon? I would describe Croydon to be an urban area, with endless amounts of colourful graffiti, artistic pieces, including the new and recently commissioned artistic Winston Churchill mural, with a lot of structural buildings that stick out like a sore thumb. Those buildings that stick out like a sore thumb are Fairfield Halls, which officially closed in July as part of expansion work which is expected to be completed some time in 2018, the Saffron Tower, the new BOXPARK opposite Lloyd’s Bank, the Nestlé Building, including the No. 1 Tower and the Whitgift Centre.

Below is the photo set I created yesterday before and during college hours.

If you like the photo set I have produced, please feel free to let me know by submitting feedback below in the comments. All feedback is much appreciated.

Alex Smithson

Make of Phone Used: iPhone 5

App Used: Camera+ (Recommended)

Want to Know How I Create My Photos? Read This.

I love photography as much as lot of you do, considering how fascinating the subject of photography really is, but how have I been able to produce my most recent collection of photographs? Well, I can tell you.

For the photos I’ve taken and published on here, I have taken my photographs most recently below ISO-400 and on ISO-400, and I have found my photographs have improved over the course of time, because I’ve been making sure to take my photos at different exposures, as well as adjusting the light balance before I take my photos.

To get photographs similar to mine, these are the settings that I recommend.

ISO-400 or below.

Exposure Bias: 0, -0.7 or -1

Focal Length: 55 mm or more depending on the camera make and camera lens, for example, Nikon or Canon.

Make sure your metering mode is either of Centre Weighted Average, or of a metering mode that will allow you to take your photos with clarity, as you will want to make sure this helps you when you need to focus your camera’s lens on a particular subject, object or item.

Also, one strong recommendation I will make that will most definitely benefit those of you wanting to take the best quality photos is to set your photo size to the NEF/RAW format, because your photos will be much bigger and will also be full of detail.

If this has helped you out, then please let me know, and if I have missed any important details out that should be here regarding photography, please let me know by submitting your feedback below. All feedback is much appreciated.

Alex Smithson

Looking at Life Through a Lens: What Makes Each Photo Tell a Story?

We all love the idea of taking photos no matter where we are, but what makes each photo tell a story? I’ll tell you.

A photo tells a story based on what you may have done in a certain place at a certain time, but sometimes, the photos you take may have a completely different story behind them based on how that photo was taken, where the photo was taken, as well as the scene that is set for that particular photo.

For example, if you remember the photo of the Canada Goose that I took back in July 2013, in which the Canada Goose was positioned directly in the middle, it’s like the Canada Goose has spotted me and is coming towards me at a certain speed, or it’s coming closer and closer to me expecting food, but really, it’s not.

When I took that photo, which, at the time, was taken with the Samsung ST200F Camera before I upgraded to the Nikon D3300 DSLR in September 2014, I was actually in a rush when I was in Kelsey Park whilst taking the photo, and even to this day, it is one of my most iconic photographs, as it was the type of photo I still haven’t, to this day, seen being recreated by other photographers, whether they’re amateur or professional or not.

For me, I like to make sure each photo I take, whether it’s part of a large photo collection or not, tells a story, as I want that photo to describe not just what I want you to see, but how I want you to see it.

I love photography and I’m always fascinated with how a certain photo is taken, because I like to know how I can produce my own photos to that similar standard.

For example, the shutter speed of the photo, the ISO (International Standards Organisation), the exposure of the photo, the exposure program that the photo was taken with (e.g. Shutter Priority or Aperture Priority), including the focal length of that particular photo that was taken.

I aim to make sure any photos I do or don’t like are kept separate from each other, so at least that way I know which photos I will upload and which photos I won’t upload, so that it gives me a better chance of balancing any article I publish.

Overall, I love photography, and if you do as well, please let me know by submitting feedback below. All feedback is much appreciated.

Alex Smithson

A Splash of Vividness

On the 1st July, I took the opportunity to get some photos of the raindrops after a downpour of rain, as the calm before the storm came and went, and then the calm after the storm came after the storm passed.

I ceased the opportunity to take these photos, as I wanted to create an updated set of photographs, with inspiration from the photos I took last year for the article: “Raindrops on Crystal Clear Glass“.

Below are the photographs in their natural glory, including a photo of the rainbow as the storm from the 1st July passed.

I feel pleased with the overall result I achieved from these photographs, as I was able to change the exposure to make these photos receive the results that I wanted. I am continuously making improvements to my photography skills so I can promise you that there is more to come. I feel quite pleased with the way these photos turned out, though I will make sure to retain an improved set of photographs for my photography collection next time.

If you enjoyed this photography article, please feel free to submit feedback. All feedback is much appreciated.

Alex Smithson