Ben Walker Photography & Videography: Blog http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog en-us (C) Ben Walker Photography & Videography ben@bpwalker.co.uk (Ben Walker Photography & Videography) Fri, 13 Feb 2015 19:50:00 GMT Fri, 13 Feb 2015 19:50:00 GMT http://benwalkerphotography.com/img/s/v-5/u398490606-o600569807-50.jpg Ben Walker Photography & Videography: Blog http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog 90 120 WHERE HAS THE TIME GONE ?!!?! http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2015/2/where-has-the-time-gone Mother of bob, it's January! The END of January! (Feb now!!!) Where has the time gone????

Suffice to say, I have 
been very very very very very very very busy! lol

In rough reverse order, Jan 25th saw my 1st wedding fayre of 2015 at the amazing Château Rhianfa, truly is a beautiful venue and the day was a huge success with many brides to be turning up and a couple of welcome bookings for my photographic services :)

 


 
 

Next up was the Take pART event held at Venue Cymru on Sat 10th Jan! This was an awesome awesome event of fabulous arts and literature activities with many workshops, performances and drop-in sessions. Also in attendance was the awesome Scifi Wales of which I am their official photographer - something I really enjoy due to my massive Scifi obsession, huge fan of Star Trek, BSG, Star Gate Universe + others! :)
 


 

 


Next up back time in time was a surprise wedding booking on the 31st Dec 2014 no less! I was on location at the always wonderful Château Rhianfa shooting a promo video for the fantastic Cherri Blue & ran into the groom who asked me if I was free that afternoon to shoot his wedding which was taking place roughly an hour later! Suffice to say, I have never got a wedding video camera setup done so fast in my life!!! about 10 mins before the bride was to walk down the isle everything was ready for this awesome wedding ceremony, Rhianfa looked amazing due to Cherri Blue making the perfect setup.

The day before that I was at The Quay Hotel & Spa shooting a beautiful wedding there, photos & video this time!

All in all, it's been an amazing fun & busy Xmas/New Year period, a few more things of interest have gone on since then but I will keep my updates there for my next post which should hopefully be sooner than this one came around! lol

Thanks for reading :)

 

]]>
ben@bpwalker.co.uk (Ben Walker Photography & Videography) http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2015/2/where-has-the-time-gone Fri, 13 Feb 2015 19:49:06 GMT
For the love of photography http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/11/for-the-love-of-photography HELLO! A bit of a random post today. I was asked today by a photography student down near Cambridge to answer a few interview questions on my job, I thought id post the transcript here for anyone reading to have a look at my life as a photographer:

 

Why did you decide to pursue this career?

-   I have loved photography since I was a child. I used to mess around with my parents Zenit EM film SLR for many years, as a teenager digital cameras started to be introduced, albeit it extremely high prices. Into my late teens 1mp cameras started to become affordable. I remember getting one for xmas and was amazed at the ability to snap away without going through tons of film – although it was obviously limited compared to my parents film SLR – I kept this for doing high quality stuff and used the digital to learn new and interesting stuff. I ended up going to university studying science & I.T. related degrees but photography remained a big part of my life. I founded the Bangor University photography club around 11 years ago with 2 other fellow students – there was one many years prior to us founding the current rendition of it, but it had apparently died out and for many years there was no such club, I am pleased to see it is still going although I have not been part of it for a few years now. After uni I then worked for 5 years in the medical industry & I.T. shooting photography part time, weekends, (usually 3-4 nights a week in events with {originally} some occasional weekend weddings that built up – my first few weddings I was 2nd shooter following a pro). Eventually I had built up a reasonable portfolio and circumstance led me to leaving my I.T. job and starting photography on a full time basis, it is something I was thinking about for a good couple of years but the opportunity arose, so I decided to make the leap, I am still early in my career but loving every second of it.

What support training would you require to be able to do this job?

- I learned my craft myself, assistant positions rarely open up, and training is mostly provided in academia in the formal sense. Like anything in life, officially or unofficially if you constantly work away at something, you will get somewhere eventually

How long have you been in the business of photography?

- Full time ~ 1.75 years, part time ~ 4/5 years

How did you first get noticed?

-  Originally I was doing mostly events work part time, portraiture at events, club photos, musical events, people starting noticing the quality of the work, numerous photographers in the area kindly emailed me commending me on the quality of the work and mainly they were impressed with the skill of flash photography I was doing. From there, word got around.

How did you sell your first piece of work or get your first paying job?

-         At first it was just people emailing and asking for prints of landscapes or portraits they had seen, I charged a sensible price with posting and took it from there, sadly this is a job where its worth isn’t widely known, so I don’t really charge what it’s worth now to stay competitive! Lol, but I love it so keep going.

Are you able to have photography as your only job or do you need another job alongside to manage?

-         As above, I now work full time but am living off much less money than I used to for the love of what I do.

Would you say photography is a hard line of work to get into?

-     EXTREMELY, it’s a completely and utterly saturated market, add in to this anyone who owns a DSLR calls themselves a photographer. For every real photographer there must be 100 part timers, 1000 uncle bobs/weekenders, 10000 ‘photographers’ who are ‘Joe blogs photography’ on Facebook. Anyone looking for a real photographer must wade through 10000+ people in any one county who call themselves a photographer. Of course one assumes here the person searching through an endless list of people I describe here would be someone who knows what they are looking for and knows what qualities a real photographer should have – 99% of people do not know what they are looking for, finds anyone with a small handful of good images and hires them, this is a complete lack of education of what ‘proper’ photographers are to the general public. This isn’t anyone’s fault in any way at all, and I don't blame anyone, it’s just the way it is right now sadly, I just think if I keep putting in 110% constantly, I hope one day it will get noticed more :)

Now everybody has a digital camera do you notice less work coming your way as people think they can do it themselves?

- Lol ! indeed, read above.

As a photographer do you class yourself at work 5 days a week, 9am to 5pm or 24/7?

- There are not enough hours in the day, 24/7

What do you wish you knew when you started taking photographs that you know now?

- Having a bigger starting budget, to make any headway you must invest many thousands of £££’s because at every level there are 50 other bigger fish in the pond who are more advanced, more experienced, and have much better gear (gear isn’t everything, but it’s obviously integral to the job – pro’s use top end gear for a reason). You have to have a thick skin in every sense to work your way up the ladder – it’s only really a market for people who thrive on challenges, never stop thinking and are completely immersed in their art. You won’t survive or get better if you don’t eat --> sleep --> photography, repeat.
 

Me with cameras or catching up with contacts Me with cameras or catching up with contacts Me with cameras or catching up with contacts Me with cameras or catching up with contacts

]]>
ben@bpwalker.co.uk (Ben Walker Photography & Videography) interview photography work http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/11/for-the-love-of-photography Thu, 27 Nov 2014 21:42:12 GMT
Rumours Of Fleetwood Mac http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/11/rumours-of-fleetwood-mac WOW !!!!!!!!

That is my first impression of Rumours Of Fleetwood Mac, Lucy (my girlfriend) & I managed to see these at Venue Cymru recently and they were astounding ! Really really enjoyed it, faithful and brilliant performences to the origonal Fleetwood Mac covering all eras including the Peter Green early days. We're so lucky that we recently found out we managed to get tickets the the real Fleetwood Mac tour in 2015, however their namesake tribute band have set the bar very very high, I can only hope and look forward to the real deal being as good! :O

Thanks for reading, a few shots below from my little 'take everywhere' camera :)

 

]]>
ben@bpwalker.co.uk (Ben Walker Photography & Videography) Fleetwood Mac Rumours Of Fleetwood Mac venue cymru http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/11/rumours-of-fleetwood-mac Tue, 25 Nov 2014 18:54:25 GMT
Baby photoshoot http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/11/baby-photoshoot Well today I was down at the P.U.B. gym again, this time with a slight difference! Jamie who does boxing training with me bought his little son Ollie-Glyn down for a baby photography shoot. All parents of course love getting pics of their little ones to keep forever, but with Jamie being recently crowned Novice Welsh Champion Boxer, he thought it would be a great idea to get some photos of Ollie-Glyn with a boxing theme, which I am pleased to say worked out great!.

After the shoot was done, Jamie took Ollie home and I stayed for a quick workout while I was down there, nothing drastic today, just a 2.6km run to get moving for the day. I am at the point in training now where I need to make more time to make more regular visits and try and get some more weight lost while improving cardiovascular performance. It’s a long road ahead to get super fit, but one I am willing to take and willing to put the effort in!

Some pictures of Ollie’s shoot are on my facebook page at:

https://www.facebook.com/BenWalkerPhotos
And one picture here showing Ollie lifting a 5kg weight ;) worry not everyone, was just a little Photoshop magic, but I thought it was a good idea and the final pic turned out to be quite effective! lol

 

]]>
ben@bpwalker.co.uk (Ben Walker Photography & Videography) http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/11/baby-photoshoot Wed, 12 Nov 2014 17:11:03 GMT
How important 1 photo can be http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/11/how-important-1-photo-can-be I was recently approached with a sensitive matter I wish to write about today. I won’t say any names or show any photos to protect the identities of those involved. A customer approached me in the hope I could enhance a close relations wedding photo from many many years ago. Tragically their relation has been diagnosed with terminal cancer and been given a few short weeks to live.

The photo was a little worn, had some marks on it from age, but the plan was to enhance the photo to restore it to the best possible state and print it out again larger and clearer for their relative to have it by their bedside during their last weeks on this Earth.

I am normally very aware of the importance of what I am doing when I shoot wedding photography, family photography and similar, but when a heartbreaking situation like this arises, it really hits home the importance that just 1 photograph can have and how much of a massive difference it can make to those involved.

Thankfully I was able to restore the photo to a good a state as possible and the new prints of the image are with the family now, I hope it brings them some comfort and happy memories as they enjoy (as best they can) their last few weeks together.

Life is so short and precious, enjoy every moment you have and make the most of what you can, when you can.

]]>
ben@bpwalker.co.uk (Ben Walker Photography & Videography) http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/11/how-important-1-photo-can-be Fri, 07 Nov 2014 17:12:01 GMT
All of lifes little jobs http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/11/all-of-lifes-little-jobs So not strictly a photo/video blog, but related. This week, new clutch for the car. Us photographers and videographers put in a lot of miles between jobs, which is fun in some ways but obviously puts miles on the car. Got 120k out of this clutch though !! I work nationally but of course most of my jobs are between here and Manchester and my little car is an essential part of me making sure those life long wedding memories are not missed. RIP old clutch, hello new one!

 

]]>
ben@bpwalker.co.uk (Ben Walker Photography & Videography) http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/11/all-of-lifes-little-jobs Fri, 07 Nov 2014 16:54:05 GMT
Venue Cymru Wedding Fayre http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/11/venue-cymru-wedding-fayre Today is one of the North Wests biggest wedding fayre's! :) And I am proud to say I am here and my stand is setup :D. Looking forward to welcoming all the brides to be and offering a great deal at great prices :) If your free and want a fun day out, I would highly recommend popping over, hope to see everyone there :)

]]>
ben@bpwalker.co.uk (Ben Walker Photography & Videography) http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/11/venue-cymru-wedding-fayre Sun, 02 Nov 2014 11:02:40 GMT
Helping out on some Empty Space http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/10/helping-out-on-some-empty-space So recently fellow film maker and friend of mine Phil Coleman made a film called 'Empty Space' for his university masters piece. Quite the ambitious project to undertake Phil came up with a cracking script and vision for his film. I was asked to help out where possible and it was a privlidge to work on this project with a large experienced team Phil had put together. My duties as 'digital image technician' were mainly helping out where possible in all things digital image related (surpising that given the title! :P). The full list of credits and people working on the film are in the final release (will link when released!)

In summary what I did was mainly:

  • Contributed time & equipment to make the film witha
  • Take care of all flimed materials, back up the data, make duplicates so *nothing* would ever be lost (As per my never loose your wedding photos/videos promise for my wedding work, same applies here, NEVER loose any data or shots!)
  • Helped out in a support manner to director of photography & rest of crew on set
  • Did the on set photography stills, making of shots, behind the scenes shots etc

All in all was a great experience, and worked with many talented folks, and learned alot! :) The trailer for the film is here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mxtEFU0zUg8&feature=youtu.be

Production blog is here:

http://anemptyspacefilm.tumblr.com/

A selection of the shots I got on set:

Phil and Ali testing out the sound:

Actress Roseanna Leathley 'Penny' gets her make up touched up by make up artist Anwen Peters

Phil Coleman, centre of shot discussing what to shoot now:

Giles Gough as 'Gabe'

This shot was used as one of the films promotional materials:

DOP Matthew Owen lining up a shot

Not all hard work on set as First Assistant Director Roderick Shaw shows:

All in all a great experience, check it out when released !! :)

]]>
ben@bpwalker.co.uk (Ben Walker Photography & Videography) http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/10/helping-out-on-some-empty-space Fri, 31 Oct 2014 15:56:57 GMT
FITography http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/10/fitography So as some of you may know, I am on a quest of discovery and self improvement. I have been working with Ian Chaffey of the P.U.B. gym in Bangor, check out their FB page here:

https://www.facebook.com/parafitpub?fref=ts

The premise is I am making a self filmed documentary on getting fit (something I have never done properly before), so I thought id challenge myself at something I know I was rubbish at and see what happens to me ! I have already done a number of episodes that I put on my YT channel here:

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLrxZiMQ8riY1DChuC3McWD_DoJi2gH5wd

The above explains what happened at the start and towards the beginning, I am ~3-4 months into it now, and I can happily say my fitness has improved and I have lost weight. Ian is a fantastic instructor, clearly passionate about what he does and this shows through in the quality of the personal training I am getting.

There has been around a month's + wait since my last update, in short, wedding season struck and so I was limited to what I could video edit other than wedding videos, (although we kept up the PT sessions!). But nearly all that is done now, and as I had a new website I thought I would keep up more of a training record in my blog !! :)

So from now on I will blog each session - let you know what happened, then gather the footage together for video updates as much as poss :)

30/10/2014

I felt mildly rough this morning, nothing bad, just a little run down. Still I didnt let this stop me, I always have a billion things to do each day. PT session with Ian was around 3 by which time I felt somewhat better. As ever a challenging session, but you simply won't make a difference if you don't sweat and reach the point of effort where you can no longer talk/barely stand up !!! lol (Have picked up a lot of aspects of mindset from PT training as well as fitness training)!

Usual brisk walk/jog to warm up

Then the dreaded.............the name escapes me at this point in time (wing something test?), anyways in short where the treadmill is 15 degrees up angle and not on, you have to push the train around yourself and build up momentum. Ian describes it as the mortgage test - sure you can reach the end of 5x sessions of insane effort to power the train around the tread mill, but then my god - you pay back for what effort your body just put in, usually in the form of being very light headed, a heart rate (for me) that maxed at 195 ppm and an overwhelming feeling of feeling sick! lol And of course dripping in sweat - its punishing but it WILL improve my fitness!

Following this we headed on over to the weighted squats. I say weighted, at this point im just using the bar (~20/25kg I think?), the weight is fairly reasonable, but that's not what were doing here. To me as a beginner its a somewhat 'alien' posture to be in, my arms and back are not used to being in the position they have to be in (arms back behind me holding the bar - all will be seen in my video), so actually the pain I feel is my arms stretching to an odd place and not the weight of the bar really (this does kick in after a few reps of course) - Here we build up slowly, 1 rep, rest until a minute is up.........2 reps from the top of the minute, until the next minute (you can rest during the remaining time), then 3 reps.......rest until the next minute, 4 reps......rest until the next minute etc....................etc............ we got to 7-8 reps within the minute and it got REALLY challenging, my muscles wobbling, arms aching like hell from the odd positioning, I took a moment to rest, flex my arms, then we did 10 reps in a minute for the last push - I kept in mind the tread mill test - you CAN do it, then just put up with your body paying you back for the effort that was put in - the thinking I am going with now!

Following all this, I ended the session with a boxing cardio session with Jamie Edwards, recently crowned the new 66kg novice welsh champion, he knows his stuff! This session was similar to the weighted squats, building up reps, 10 punches left, 10 right........then 20 left, 20 right........keep repeating up until 60 left/right........at this point I was just exhausted, laughing at my legs trembling, my body reached its (comfortable) limit for this session.

I say comfortable, in that, I wasn’t unconscious! Lol but I couldn’t even use my phone after for a few minutes as my arms and hands were trembling, presumably fighting to get oxygen back into my body!

This was only one session, and we got all that done – Something I would even say as a beginner is, people DO have the time to gym – they just need to make it happen, anything is possible if you decide it so.

On my way out Ian was tucking into his dinner he earned after training me! :P

Stay tuned for the update soon, meanwhile if you’re interested, keep popping back to this blog to see what really goes on at the gym, if like me you’re a beginner and have no clue, hopefully this will reveal the mystery of the what getting fit and healthy involves :)

 

]]>
ben@bpwalker.co.uk (Ben Walker Photography & Videography) FITography fitness gym health http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/10/fitography Fri, 31 Oct 2014 12:25:04 GMT
Reached the top 5 in National Welsh Wedding Awards! http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/10/reached-the-top-5-in-national-welsh-wedding-awards I came home the other day to find a letter from the national welsh wedding awards! Seems I have reached the top 5 shortlist for my region for best photographer :O. I have to say I am quite shocked and very grateful to reach this stage, I can only say thank you very very much to everyone who took the time to vote for me, it is hugely appreciated and I will continue to try my very best at what I love doing.

 

]]>
ben@bpwalker.co.uk (Ben Walker Photography & Videography) http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/10/reached-the-top-5-in-national-welsh-wedding-awards Thu, 30 Oct 2014 13:01:38 GMT
New blog wooooo :D http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/10/new-blog-wooooo-d New blog post :)

]]>
ben@bpwalker.co.uk (Ben Walker Photography & Videography) http://benwalkerphotography.com/blog/2014/10/new-blog-wooooo-d Mon, 27 Oct 2014 18:36:38 GMT