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No photograph that is displayed and posted on this blog may be reproduced, copied, stored, manipulated or used in whole or in part of a derivative work without the prior written permission of the Copyright (c) Owner & Photographer: Trevor David Betts BA (Hons). All rights reserved.

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If you want to use any of my photographs displayed upon this blog, for inclusion in an essay, presentation, talk, or for posting on your blog or web site. Or for use in any other way or means. Then it would be very much appreciated if you could contact me first (as a matter of courtesy and decency) to seek my permission to use any of my photographs. Failure to do so is breach of my copyright and rights.




Friday, 22 May 2009

PHOTO STORIES No.4

What was your most embarrassing photography moment? Well mine goes far back a number of years to when I first really became interested in photography and started to use 35mm SLR cameras, whilst serving in the Army.

I had finished a short course at Ashford in Kent, and I had just returned to my unit's barracks in Colchester, Essex when I was told the unit PRO wanted me to take photographs of a very well-known celebrity who was visiting the barracks the following day (Saturday) has she was in the locality after opening a new supermarket in Stansted.

Saturday dawned and later on that morning three Fox armoured vehicles (that's a bit of a give a way to who the celebrity was) drove up to Battalion Headquarters and out stepped the celebrity with her manager and other staff.

She was only about 5 foot tall but with a very well defined chest (yes it was Samantha Fox, the famous Sun Page 3 girl). She was signing copies of her latest calendar and a horde of young soldiers posed for their photo with this sex symbol. I was busy taking photos with a Nikon camera (FM2 I think and a Metz flashgun). I loaded the camera with Ilford Pan F 50 asa film.

After all this was done and because I had a key to the unit darkroom I thought right I will get these three rolls of film developed and processed. Big mistake because this was the very first time that I had done this process and yes I made a right pig's ear of it. I had not developed the films long enough and they were as thin as hell. I went out and bought some chemicals to try and increase the depth and tone of the negatives but I ended up taking them to a local photography shop in an attempt to save my bacon.

Needless to say I was not very popular for many weeks after this incident and I attempted to keep a low profile. Since then I have made the odd error namely clicking away taking photographs to discover that I have not even loaded a film into the damn camera (now tell me you have never done that). Then once when I was doing an important shoot one of my camera's locked up on me. I had a spare body and rolls of film so that was a potential disaster averted.

Then of course there have been times when I wish I had done something which I had not such as take and use my Metz flashgun to Normandy with me when taking photos of the Normandy Veterans (using fill-in-flash outdoors). But available light did the trick. Hindsight is a wonderful thing is it not.

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HELLO AND WELCOME

To my Photo Blog,

All my monochrome photography is darkroom produced. This portfolio consists of photographs from several of my projects, assignments, personal and course related work. Some of these monochrome photographic prints are then selectively toned.

Take a look at the slide show, or the popular posts. Click onto some of the many excellent blogs that I have listed in my blog roll. I welcome constructive feedback (post a comment).

Click onto the links in some of my posts which will then take you to the relevant website link where you will be able to find out more about that location, charity or organisation etc featured in the post and which is relevant to that specific image.

Also please click onto my links. Join my blog and my Google + followers. If you would like to know more about any particular photograph or project then please send me an email. My email address is at the foot of this page.

Also from time to time I will post videos that are of interest to me, mainly from my military background.

Yours sincerely

Trevor David Betts BA (Hons)

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TECHNICAL INFORMATION

All the photographs featured on this blog spot were taken on Canon analog 35mm SLR cameras which included: Canon A1, Canon AE1 (non-programme) and Canon T90. The Canon A1 was rendered useless after prolonged exposure to salt spray residue, and the AE1 suffered a malfunction, and one of my T90s just packed up on me during a photographic shoot.

Most of my camera equipment was initially purchased brand new, then as the years have past I have purchased second-hand equipment. But the vast majority of equipment I currently possess is well over twenty years old.

Canon FD lenses used were: 28, and 35mm wide angle, 50mm standard, 35-105mm short telephoto zoom and a 70-210mm large telephoto zoom lenses. Also used was a loaned Mamiya 645 with 50 and 80mm lenses. My favourite combination is a T90 fitted with the 35-105mm lens with an Hoya orange filter. I use Hoya orange, red, neutral density, and skylight filters. Hoya and Canon lens hoods. A Canon remote cable. I have used a great Metz 45 CT-4 flashgun for many years. I used this for the bounced and fill-in flash for some of the documentary and portraiture work.

Studio flash used was Courtenay brolly flash (just two heads fitted with soft boxes) at Hull Community Artworks studio (sadly this excellent local arts facility closed in 2001). Billingham and Tamrac camera bags (the Billingham is a old model that I have had for years - wonderful bags). The Tamrac one is a medium sized back pack type bag. Slik Black Diamond 88, and 500 DX Pro tripods. A Cullmann touring set (which consists of a light tripod, ball and swivel head, all-purpose clamp, suction cap, and a ground spike). I presently have three Canon T90 and one A1 SLR cameras.

Film used was mainly 35mm (with some 120mm). Ilford Delta monochrome negative print film, 100 asa (a few rolls of 400 asa as well). Ilford HP5 and FP4 (400 and 125 asa respectively). Fuji Neopan 400 asa. Various Fuji colour film. Photographic chemicals: Ilford ID-11 and Microphen film developers. Agfa Rodinal fine grain film developer, and Ilford Hypam fixer.

Photographic paper: Ilford Multigrade IV VC paper, Fibre based VC paper including warm and cool tone. Kentmere Velvet Stipple and Art Document papers. Kodak selenium toner. Barclay and Fotospeed sepia toners, and Colorvir blue toner. Durst M60 and Meopta 5 enlargers fitted with 50 and 80mm Schneider lenses. Kenro negative sheets and Jessops negative folders.

Most of my photography involves the use of the camera being securely mounted onto the tripod, with the shutter set to the 10 second delay. I bracket my exposures (relying on the excellent Canon in-camera meter). My aperture settings are usually between F5.6 and F22. In the vast majority of cases the very first exposure I take is usually the correctly exposed one.

Finished photographic prints (spotted if needed). At the 10 x 8 inch size are then scanned on an Epsom 1660 photo perfection scanner using Adope Photoshop CS2 at the 5.5 x 3.5 inch image or canvas size, 150 dpi and at the 750 x 550 pixels size, and saved as for the web. The only thing that is manipulated is the brightness balance and contrast levels.

DON'T FORGET

"It is the soldier, not the minister, who has given us freedom of religion.

It is the soldier, not the lawyer, who has given us the right to fair protest.

It is the soldier, not the politician, who has given us freedom of speech.

It is the soldier, whose coffin is draped by the flag, who allows the protester to burn the flag."

From: "Fighting for Queen and Country,
by Nigel 'Spud' Ely. Blake Publishing London, 2007.
"