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Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

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bert
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Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by bert » Mon Apr 13, 2009 7:34 pm

Forumites,
Please welcome Roger de la Harpe, one of the leading photographers in the world and rated as one of the best in Africa.
Roger and Pat de la Harpe, have over the years made frequent excursions into various regions of the African continent. They share a passion for natural history, wild places and different cultures and their work on these subjects has featured in numerous publications around the world, most notably BBC Wildlife, Geo and National Geographic.

Quote from his Website.
The mods are very excited that he has agreed to answer questions and share his knowledge and experience.
Please feel free to ask :thumbs_up:

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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by Roger de la Harpe » Tue Apr 14, 2009 7:12 am

Bert

Hi. Many thanks for the welcome and Hi to all. I certainly don't profess to be all knowing and seeing on things photography but it would be great to get some photographic discussions going regarding any photographic queries you may have.

Looking forward to some fun here.
Stay well

Roger de la Harpe

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Mgoddard
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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by Mgoddard » Tue Apr 14, 2009 7:13 am

Thanks Bert, this is very exciting :D and thanks to Roger for his help :D Problem is where/what do you start asking :shock: Maybe Roger can give us a lesson each week, simple things on what to do, what not to do, what to look for etcc.....hope that is not too much to ask :shock:

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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by JenB » Tue Apr 14, 2009 7:14 am

Hi Roger,
Warm welcome to the forum! It is indeed a pleasure to have you on board.
I'm looking forward to leaning lots, can do with some photographic education! :dance:
"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened." ~ Anatole France

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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by Mike1916 » Tue Apr 14, 2009 8:24 am

Hi and welcome to the forums Roger :dance: :dance:
It is so exciting to have such an amazing photographer on the forums and ready to help us :dance: :dance:

Great suggestion JenB :thumbs_up: I for one would be very honoured to get some tips from this true master of photography!! :pray:
Sustainability is not something we do in addition to..........., it is about the manner in which we do everything

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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by binkybozo » Tue Apr 14, 2009 8:34 am

wow this is really cool! i think you will find a lot of forum members eager to learn, thank you so much for becoming a member and an advisor to the photography threads.

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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by MATTHYS » Tue Apr 14, 2009 8:42 am

Warm welcome to the forums, Roger :D
Thank you for being willing to share your knowledge with us.
I do hope you have lots of fun too !
aquila non capit muscas

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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by DinkyBird » Tue Apr 14, 2009 8:51 am

And a very warm welcome to the forums from me, Roger. Thank you for being prepared to answer our questions :clap: :clap:
Sawubona
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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by DuQues » Tue Apr 14, 2009 9:01 am

And a warm welcome to you Roger! :yaya:

How about a nice easy question to start with? Composition?
I saw that many forumites have trouble with that, putting the subject slam bang in the middle.

Do you use the rule of thirds, conciously or subconciously, while photographing animals?
Bit hard to do with a speeding cheetah of course, but in slower situations?
Of do you put the centerfocuspoint (the fastest) on the nearest eye and crop to pleasing dimensions later?
Not posting much here anymore, but the photo's you can follow here There is plenty there.

Feel free to use any of these additional letters to correct the spelling of words found in the above post: a-e-t-n-d-i-o-s-m-l-u-y-h-c

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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by Boorgatspook » Tue Apr 14, 2009 9:09 am

A warm welcome from me too Roger! 8)

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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by Roger de la Harpe » Tue Apr 14, 2009 9:04 pm

Hi. Many thanks for all your wishes and comments - I really do appreciate them.

Good call DuQues! Yes, the rule of thirds...

One of the first things I do on our photographic workshops is explain that there are 4 very definite rules:

1. Remember to use the rule of thirds.
2. Never use the rule of thirds is it doesn't work.
3. Have fun shooting pix
4. Above all, remember rule 3.

For those of you that don't know what the rule of thirds is, it means that if you divide any image into thirds vertically and horizontally (hey, can we insert images here - it would make it a lot easier!) the points where the lines cross, and the lines themselves, make very strong places for placing focal points and things like horizons, trees and so on.

So, yes, the rule of thirds can be invaluable in choosing the placement of focal points etc, including that running cheetah, DuQues. It just makes it very much more difficult to achieve. It's not often that placing you focal point in the centre of an image works and auto focus cameras with a single auto focus activation point right in the centre has done more for bad photography that anything else that I know of.

For those with multiple focus points, learn to use them (and learn to use them very quickly - actually instinctively) and for those that don't, use your focus lock and then recompose the image in the view finder before releasing the shutter.

BUT, and it's a big but, don't use the rule of thirds where it doesn't work - and it doesn't always. A tight shot of an elephant walking away from you is a good example of where is may not work. There is a symmetry to the image that would be lost if you were to place the image on the third.

A great tip that I got years ago and have used again and again is never to look at the scene unfolding in front of you through your camera. Rather look at the picture in the camera’s viewfinder – pretend that it’s a postcard in there. Look at it. Analyse the image and criticise it. Look at the corners, the sides and the background and try to figure out what adds to the composition and what detracts from it. You’ll be amazed at the difference it will make to your images.

Remember, it most cases, there is no rush. Sure you get the running cheetah, but how often…? Take it easy. Look. See. And only then get the image.
Stay well

Roger de la Harpe

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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by Pjw » Tue Apr 14, 2009 9:09 pm

Wow This is great. Thanks Roger.
If the subject is stationary or almost still where should one aim to have the focus points? The eyes? or......?
"In the end we conserve only that which we love, we love only that which we understand, we understand only that which we are taught"
(Baba Dioum, Senegalese Ecologist)

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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by CuriousCanadian » Tue Apr 14, 2009 9:09 pm

Thank you for a funny & very informative post!!!! :D

Welcome to the forum!!! :dance:
Appreciate what you have before it becomes what you had.

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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by Mike1916 » Wed Apr 15, 2009 2:43 pm

Thanks for the advice roger :thumbs_up: :thumbs_up:
Sustainability is not something we do in addition to..........., it is about the manner in which we do everything

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bert
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Re: Advice from professional photographer Roger de la Harpe

Unread post by bert » Wed Apr 15, 2009 3:13 pm

Txs Roger
If i read it correctly its the compostition which is important.
Speaking for myself
My view when walking are driving through nature is limited to a postcard size :wink:


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