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Targa 2017

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I'm going to keep this blog post short and sweet, as I am going through my old blog post drafts, I am finding old photos I started to set out and then didnt finish up. So ... here are some photos from last years Targa Rally in the Malaga Street Stage, was a wet start to the day but still ended up being pretty awesome.

Where I've Been, What I've Been Up To

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It’s been some time since my last post, again, I just can seem to keep these posts a more regular thing.

2018 has been a full on year already, we had our honeymoon to South East Asia which was amazing. You can see the vlogs from that trip here:

Since getting back we have taken on a more frugal living, 2017 was one of the most amazing years, with getting engaged, traveling through Europe, multiple trips to South Africa, and our wedding in Broome ... 2017 was an expensive year.

I’ve slowed down on the photo taking this year to focus on working on private architectural drafting jobs. I’ve been picking up more drafting jobs than anything this year, I’ve found that people are more willing to spend money on drafting work over getting photos done, which has made it a lot more difficult to drum up photo and video work.

That’s been a bit of a downer, because even if it’s taking photos for someone else, I still enjoy the process of taking those photos. My drafting work requires a lot of extra time spent on the computer in the evenings after a long day working my normal hours, and that leaves me feeling tired when I am done.

I am hoping, as the year goes on, I will get to work on some new and exciting projects that will satisfy that creative itch I constantly seem to have! Who knows if I can really get my act together I may even finally get to upgrade my gear, which is in desperate need of an upgrade. But that’s still a long way off, so for the mean time, I will continue to work with what I have an do the best that I can do.


Current Projects: 

Hopefully by putting these down here, I may get my act together and complete them, preferably before creating any new projects for myself ... maybe.

- Website Update. This is something I’ve been wanting to do for some time, I’m still playing with the templates I want to use. 

- Our Wedding Video.  This has been a daunting project, we came home with over 30 hours of video that needs to be looked through.

 - Jodi-Lee and Dylan’s Wedding Photos. Earlier this year I was asked to photograph the wedding of some close friends. It was such a great day and I am really happy with what I was able to capture on the day, I’m sure they will love them. Also manages to capture the speeches and ceremony on video for them, which was cool to get right.

 Shooting Jodie & Dylans Wedding.

Shooting Jodie & Dylans Wedding.

- Melbourne Video. We went to Melbourne in Feb this year, my first time there, and I capture a lot of video content I want to put together.

- South African 2017 Video. On my second trip to SA last year I set out to record the holiday but ended up really despondent with the video because I didn’t capture the right video to tell the story I was hoping for. Now that some time has passed, I want to try do something a little different with that video. But we’ll see, I’m still not sure, if I’m still not happy I will just let this project go.

- Blog Updates. I have a large number of prestarted blog posts that have been building up in the draft section, & it's time to get them finished and posted.


So for now that’s it, I have other thoughts on things I’d like to try. I’ve got a note book that I write any ideas in, so for now they will just stay on the papers of my journal until I clear up my current project list.

I think that’s a decent start to these semi-regular ... I hope, posts. 

See you all soon.

Mike.  

Sometimes Done Is Better Than Perfect


Sometimes done is better than perfect, this is a concept that I have started to come to terms with. I can be a perfectionist, and have only recently begun to realise just how much I am. I have these grand ideas when it comes to my work, mainly video as that’s what I’ve been playing with most, and time and lack of experience tend to destroy my grand plans.

But recently I have begun to look at things differently, my time management skills need a lot of work, and this also affects my work as I will put a project aside for months and then get more frustrated when I pick the project back up again. I have several large projects I have been working on and off again all year that I would like to finish up before the end of the year, I know that they will bug me for a long time If they remain incomplete, and this is where the philosophy of “Done is better than perfect” comes in. I get hung up on needing to make things perfect, but a time comes where getting them done is more important, than making them perfect, even just for my own head.

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So the plan for the rest of the year is to focus on getting these projects finished, before jumping on to anything else ‘large’, I’ve still got lots of ideas of things I’d like to do, but need to finish my left overs before moving on.

2017 is nearly coming to an end, and the start of 2018 will see my wife and myself heading off on our honeymoon. We’re going to places we’ve been before and new places we haven’t, I am really looking forward to some time away. I’ll make a video of it in some form or another, or I’ll just go to take photos, I haven’t thought that far ahead yet but either way it will be a great trip.

Anyway I think that’s enough rambling for now, sorry that it seems like my latest blogs of been a bit wordy and maybe a little self deprecating, I just find writing these blogs helps me work out what is going on in my head. 

Catch you all soon.  M

De Stijl

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March this year saw me heading back to South Africa for my cousin's wedding, while on that trip I caught up with some great creatives and we did some studio shooting. I filmed some behind the scenes video from the shoot, which can be seen below.

I also did some photo shooting as well, but I mainly focused on 35mm film photography. So the images below make up some of the images from the day and some behind the scenes images as well.

Ill be posting up a proper gallery on the main portion of the site, but sure to keep an eye out for that.

Cheers,
Mike.

Creative Despondency

This year has flown by so quickly, it's already July, and I have found that as the year has gone on I have slipped into a level of creative despondency ... my drive to take photos and make videos has taken a big hit over the last few months.

My biggest problem, mainly with my video work, is that I expect such a high standard from my work, but I am still learning, and have minimal experience to pull off the quality I set for myself, and then end up getting disappointed when I don't reach what I was aiming for. A knock on effect from this, is when I am travelling I will spend more time taking video over photos, and then get disappointed when I capture only a 'few' images and a lot of video that I am not happy. 

I know that this is a silly thing to get worked up over and that it's entirely my fault, but its been something thats been bugging me for some time and wasn't until my last trip back to South Africa (& coming back from said trip with out what I set out to come back with) that I began to work out why I have been feeling this way lately.

There are a number of things I need to change in the way I do things to get those creative juices flowing again, I need to stop making excuses for my 'lack of time' and just get out there to take photos, shoot video, work on these blog/vlog posts (I currently have around 20 draft blog/vlog posts in draft form that need to be finished), I have my Europe trip vlogs that need to be finish, I also have a series of different ideas that I want to flesh out and get off of the pages of my 'Ideas Book'. I really just need to learn to better time manage myself, & stop procrastinating, to get my incomplete projects finished, or I must just leave them as is and move on.

Anyway thats where my mind has been lately, enough of all this Despondency stuff. I have an upcoming boy's trip down south next weekend that I am planning to photo and video like crazy. I have been planning the kind of shots I want to get while on that trip, I will also be testing out the new Sony A9 which is being kindly lent to me for that weekend. I am looking forward to playing and potentially reviewing the camera. I also have my own upcoming wedding later this year that I'll be documenting, to a point, as I cant be behind the camera when saying "I do". So there are lots of exciting things coming up, with a few exciting opportunities on the horizon as well.

This is something small I have been working on lately that has turned out like I was hoping and has started to reignite that creative spark.

So with that all said and done, I must get back to some video editing.

I'll be back.

Filming Africa

I seem to start a lot of these blogs with "Can You Believe ..." and this post is no different. Can you believe that we are nearly 6 months into 2017 already!? This Friday see's me flying back to South Africa for another wedding, this time for my Sister-in-Laws wedding. Unfortunately its going to be another short trip, just 9 days, which is the same amount of time that I went back for in March.

This trip is going to be a little different from my March trip, that trip was all documented on 35mm 'Analogue' film. I have developed some of the black and white film myself and will put up a blog post with those images and thoughts soon. But on this trip I am endeavouring to film this trip and make a movie out of it. I have made vlogs about my travels before, I actually did my first attempt at some vlogging on my first trip to the Philippines. 

But it wasn't until my first trip to the US that I started doing daily vlogs about what I was up to, and I've been documenting my travels since then. Speaking of which ... I still have to finish my videos from Europe earlier this year. 

I have tried to 'Up' the production value of my videos as I have continued to produce these videos, and I am my own worst enemy when I feel like I am not producing good enough content. I can get despondent and loose the desire to work on it, it's not a good quality I have but I'm trying to change that. Now to combat not getting despondent over my work I am trying to pre-plan the video.  

With my increasing desire to make videos, I have learnt that 'running and gunning' can sometimes leave you wanting, in terms of the content that can be used. Its not something that I have to worry about when it comes to my photography, it's a lot easier to make a single frame engaging, compared to a 5-10 minute video. A lot more thought needs to be put in to what goes into video, we live in a society today that is so over saturated with content, that being able to engage with an audience, and keep their attention, is becoming harder and harder. But that's a deeper and more thoughtful topic for another day.

I've bought a few new pieces of equipment that I will be using on this trip, a camera slider and a couple neutral density filters to keep that lovely "bokeh" look to the video I'll be creating.

So keep an eye out for that video, check out my instagram account @optic_canvas for my video based content.

Mike. 

Analogue Africa

We are 3 months in to 2017 and I haven't put out a blog post this year ... yup pretty lame. I've been a busy boy, having done a few paid photo shoots, but haven't done much of my own stuff this year.

Ive still got a lot of vlog editing to do from our Europe Trip in January, I just need to make some time to get those done. But I'll leave any major life updates out of this post.

I am heading back to South Africa on Friday for my cousin's wedding, and with this upcoming trip I have decided to make it an entirely 'analogue' trip just shooting with 35mm film. I have about 20 rolls of film that I'll be taking to use, I will also take my GoPro 5 to create a video of the weeks shooting experiences. Not sure entirely what to expect but I am really looking forward to the trip.

So that's where I will leave it for now, please enjoy some of the film photos from last years trip to South Africa. Be sure to keep an eye out for the photos and video from the trip.

Mike.

Jess Photo Shoot

Well its December & I have well and truly slipped with keeping my blog posts consistent. The last few months have been pretty crazy, but I wont be getting into that just now. There will be another blog/vlog posts about that in the next couple of weeks. For today's post, these images are from a workshop I did a few months ago that was focused on using natural light to light your model. I am really happy with the images that I got out of the workshop, I even got some film shots done from the day. If I get a chance I will post up another blog post with just the 'analogue' versions of this shoot.

Hope you enjoy, let me know what you think.

Mike.