In our latest Professional Photographer to the Rescue post we get a bit niche – and a bit wet! Find out how to take incredible pictures of castles that utilise the natural elements to add drama.
Meet our professional photographer
Chris Weston is one of the UK’s best wildlife photographers. His breathtaking book Animals on the Edge, featuring the world’s most photogenic endangered mammals, is published by Thames & Hudson. He runs regular workshops and safaris, and was a natural choice for our Northumberland seascape masterclass, having grown up in the area. Find out more at Chris’ website.
Meet our apprentice
Oliver Godwin is a microbiologist and lives in Reading. His first DSLR was a Sony A350, but he became frustrated by the lack of lenses and accessories available for the system. He made the decision to switch to a Nikon D7000, which he bought last year so he could take it on his dream honeymoon holiday to Borneo. He loves shooting landscapes and wildlife, and turned to us for help with boosting his skills.
Was Oliver ready to do battle against Northumberland’s photogenic castles? As they explored the shore at Dunstanburgh, Chris gave his verdict on Oliver’s basic camera setup. Here are the two key settings that he suggested Oliver should change…
A, but not M
Oliver said he normally used the Scene modes, and that he assumed I’d get him to switch straight to Manual (M) exposure mode. In fact, M is the old-fashioned way of doing things. You get just as much control if you use Aperture Priority (A) or Shutter Priority (S), which are easier to use than M. I use Aperture Priority for 90 per cent of my shots.
Set a Cloudy or Shade White Balance
Oliver had his White Balance set to Automatic, but I recommended that he switched from this to either the Cloudy or Shade White Balance presets. These act as warm-up filters, giving you a nicer-looking image when your scene isn’t directly lit by sunlight.
PAGE 1: Meet our professional photographer and apprentice
PAGE 2: Castle photography tips for during the shoot
PAGE 3: Final tips from our professional photographer
PAGE 4: Our professional photographer’s recommended gear for pictures of castles
PAGE 5: Shot of the Day
Digital camera modes explained: choose the best shooting mode for your subject
15 common photography questions from beginners (and how to solve them)
The 10 Commandments of Landscape Photography (and how to break them)