NPhoto - - The NPhoto Apprentice -

For my fi­nal shot, Char­lie took me to Stour­min­ster Mill, where I was able to put ev­ery­thing I’d learned the day be­fore into prac­tice. As with my other shots, the trick was to really fo­cus in on what I liked about the scene, and in Char­lie’s words, to omit the re­dun­dant. I started by tak­ing a very wide shot, al­most as a ref­er­ence point. This in­cluded the tum­bling white wa­ter of the weir to the right of the frame, but as Char­lie pointed out, this bright high­light leads the eye away from the mill and its re­flec­tion, while the mill ap­pears to be ‘look­ing’ in the wrong di­rec­tion. With the help of Char­lie’s plas­tic frame, I moved to the left slightly, and zoomed in for a much tighter crop of the mill. This re­sulted in an im­age that was more bal­anced, with the mill now look­ing into the space on the left, but this time the patches of white foam from the weir were the dis­trac­tion. The so­lu­tion was to use my vari­able ND, set to max­i­mum. With­out it, my shut­ter speed was 1/2 sec at f/16 and ISO50, but with it at­tached I had to set a shut­ter speed of 10 secs for a cor­rect ex­po­sure, which was long enough to blur the foam that was mov­ing, while still re­tain­ing the re­flec­tion.

It was only when I zoomed back out slightly, to hide some of the foam be­hind the river bank, and in­clude the blue of the rapidly clear­ing sky, that it all came to­gether [above right].

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