Hello and happy belated Halloween! A friend of mine very kindly got me this huge amazing pumpkin from her family’s patch and I needed to do something with it this Halloween. This was pretty fun to make and upload. Halloween isn’t usually my thing – I love all the cute spooky decorations, and I can get on board with the dressing up, but actual scary things are not my cup of tea. Do you celebrate Halloween – if so, how? Jas x
Looking at my well-used and 6 year old Canon 6D with a cracked screen and missing the odd dial or two, I realised it was probably the right time to look into updating my photography kit. I always thought that doing so would be completely impossible with my finances, but then I discovered you could buy things on finance and it was like a choir of angels shining down on me and saying ‘what goodies would you like to play with?’. I looked into switching to a Sony mirrorless camera A LOT. I got a lot of different opinions, and the new A7iii sounds pretty amazing. However, in the end I decided to get another faithful Canon 6D as I love it a lot, and frankly, it was a third of the price too. BUT because I saved (ish) on my camera body, a part of me whispered ‘…but…. I could get a new lens?’.
Ever since I bought the Sigma 35mm ART f1.4 a few years ago, it hasn’t really left my camera. I completely fell in love with it, and after all this time I’m still so impressed with it. However, shooting only at 35mm has it’s limits. As it’s a little wide angle, I found shooting full body portraits and portraits from a distance a bit of a struggle. Not impossible, but I’d lose a bit of sharpness and the distortion from the lens would start to get quite obvious. I follow the amazing photographer Rekha Garton, and she recommended a 100mm lens. I thought – wow 100mm? My immediate thoughts where: a) I bet that shoots beautiful un-distorted portraits b) I also bet I’ll have to stand REALLY far back compared to my 35mm and c) I could take a macro picture of a bug, y’know, if I ever wanted too.
If I was going to spend the money on a new lens, the least I could do was get something that was vastly different to my 35mm so that I could try something new, but also had a few more options and strings to my bow. And so, the Canon 100mm f2.8 IS was added to my basket and arrived at my door. It was like an early Christmas day.
The first few pictures I took where… yes, okay, they where of a flower. With the 35mm, you have to stand quite far back to focus, but with this lens you can get right up and personal with the macro. I said ‘look how close up I can get 😲’ quite a few times, I’m pretty sure.
It’s so different from my 35mm. I love the photojournalistic feel of those images, and this lens is going to take some getting used to. However, all in all, I’m really happy with it.
I took it out for a bit of a spin photographing myself at the park. It’s SO. SHARP. My full body portraits look so different but in a great way.
This morning I took my fiance out to do something similar too…
It’s going to take some getting used to, but I’m really looking forward to seeing what I can create with it. New kit is inspiring! Everytime I take an image I’m excited about what result I will get.
What’s your favourite lens? Let me know in the comments, I’d love to hear.
Hello! I’t been a little while since I’ve updated here. I’ve been involved in a really exciting project over the past month or two as a film stills photographer and I’m happy to be able to share with you the very first part – so here goes. In September I spent 7 days working on set of the TV pilot filming ‘Whatever After’ which is a ‘A series of dark, witty and subversive fairy tales, re-imagined as allegories for the world today.’ The scripts are honestly brilliant, who knows where this project will end up?
I was there as film stills photographer, something which I am so keen to do more of now. It combines my love for theatre and documentary in one. I also generally helped out on set and stepped into a couple of roles too, including a magpie and a destitue woman (very glamorous!). I’m sure there are going to be quite a few blog posts on this coming out as I’m allowed to release more images and information, but for now I’m excited to share a bit of what I’ve been up to and some of the beautiful things I got to experience and photograph.
Throughout the week I made so many amazing new friends who I already miss. It reminded me of working in theatre – everyone working hard to come together and make something amazing and sharing the experience.
The hardest thing about the week was dealing with a new schedule (5am starts!) long days and how that would then effect my anxiety and energy levels. If anyone is interested, I may write a blog post about my experiences of anxiety on a film set and the little ways that worked for me to make the experience amazing.
But, for now, here’s a little sneak peak.
Director: Jack Jewers / DOP: Tom Blount / Costume: Jenny Anderton / Make Up: Siân Revill
Camera: Canon 6D / Lens: Sigma ART f1.4 35mm
For now, thank you for reading and following my blog. I’ll be back soon! Please feel free to say hello.
Have a great day,
Jasmine Aurora x
I have always felt a connection with nature and flowers, and as I get older I find myself wanting and needing to be around nature more. I love walking down to the river to feed the ducks, and days full of rain and walks outside have such a relaxing and meditative effect on me.
If only I put could down the computer and phone more often and do these things, instead of scrolling on instagram. Does anyone else feel the same? As soon as I’m living somewhere that allows pet’s I’m going to adopt a dog and we can explore the woods around here every day.
I want to start including nature, particularly flowers, in my work at lot more so this was my first little self portrait adventure. One small, single bloom to show the start of something more.
Hi guys! I’m always interested to know what kind of photo equipment people use for their photos – mostly the lens, as I think that’s where all the magic really happens.
For me my photography totally changed when I was able to use this set up, and it was a fantastic investment. I’ve slowly built up to this equipment over a few years.
My most used set up…
Camera: Canon EOS 6D
Lens: SIGMA Art 35mm f1.4
Computer: 21″ iMac and 13″ Macbook Pro
Software: Adobe Lightroom Classic & Adobe Photoshop CC
You can see some examples of using only this set up here:
What About The Future?
Honestly? I’m up for experimenting with pretty much anything to see what can be made with it. In general I do prefer shooting with prime lenses (ones that don’t zoom!) because it adds a) a visual consistency through your work and b) absolutely gorgeous results and depth of field (my favourite). I don’t have the budget to expand soon, but I would love to try:
85mm f1.4 (Sigma or Canon)
50mm f1.4 (Sigma or Canon)
and perhaps have a go with a…
Canon 5d Mk4
Sony Mirrorless cameras!
I’m always interested in finding out what people use and why they love it.
What’s your favourite camera set up?
What would you like to try next?
Jasmine Aurora x