Page 1

Issue 2

Keeping you on track on your photography journey

Lightroom & Photoshop for the Beginner

Kenneth Fisher continues his series of tutorials to guide you through the Adobe software

Extreme Close Up Macro

Les Arnott shows you how to get head to head with small subjects extremely close up!

Focus on the photographer

Shhhhhh it’s a secret! We reveal the Competition Winners for issue 2

Interviews with great photographers Cris Janson-Piers and Daniel Charnitsky plus much more inside!


Editors Page

Contents Page


Article A Celebration Of Photography From Our Contestants In The Phototrain Photography Competition


Getting Creative Tutorial Series With Les Arnott


Lightroom Beginners Tutorials With Kenneth Fisher


Macro Photography - Getting Past The One To One Zone With Les Arnott


Focus On The Photographer Cris Janson-Piers


A New Raw File Editor And Much More! A First Look At The On1 Raw pre-Release With Les Arnott


Focus On The Photographer Daniel Charnitsky


Photoshop Tutorials For Beginners With Kenneth Fisher


The Phototrain Photography Competition Winners

Welcome to the 2nd issue of Phototrain Photography Magazine. We are extremely pleased with all the feedback from the first issue and the number of reads and shares we have received from people, we thank you all. In this issue Kenneth Fisher and myself continue our video tutorials in Lightroom and Photoshop We look at the stories and photos of 2 great photographers in our Focus on the Photographer articles I show the photographer how to get past the one to one zone in Macro photography and get into the Extreme side of this fascinating form of photography. Plus I take a look at a great new RAW processing and combined effects package produced by the company ON1. Will it give Adobe Lightroom major contention? Time will tell! We have some awesome winners to feature this month from our Weekly Phototrain Photography Competition that takes place on Facebook and judged by our own mega photography judge Graham Orgill a vastly experienced Camera Club Guru! I would just like to say thanks to Graham who took time out for just one week following some surgery, it was an experience to fill his boots for one week and to see just how hard it is to select a winner from so many great photos! Have a great Holiday season everyone and we will be back hopefully with even more great articles in the new year Les Arnott - Editor


A CELEBRATION OF PHOTOGRAPHY FROM OUR CONTESTANTS IN THE PHOTOTRAIN PHOTOGRAPHY COMPETITION Phototrain Magazine would like to wish all our readers a wonderful Holiday Season and a Happy New Year for 2017. We celebrate with just a few of the fantastic images posted into our Facebook Competition Group over the last month. The talent increases week by week as more contestants take part and join in the fun. Why don’t you join us too at:


GETTING CREATIVE TUTORIAL SERIES with Les Arnott Using the Vanishing Point Filter in PS In this tutorial aimed at the Intermediate to Advanced learner we learn how to use the Vanishing Point filter in Photoshop to create the correct perspective when working in composite images. You will learn how to create a simple label and to put it in two separate parts of the image whilst automatically transposing to the correct perspective. Sounds very technical? Maybe but by following the tutorial and downloading the image direct from here you can see it’s not too difficult to follow and create some cool effects! Right click to save the exercise file > DOWNLOAD

Applying graphical images to a perspective plane. Once you have mastered the technique try applying things to photos of blocks of flats, building walls or any other flat surfaced objects. 4

GETTING CREATIVE TUTORIAL SERIES with Les Arnott None Basic Perspective Corrections In my second tutorial for this issue I’m looking at making perspective corrections for wide-angle lenses that cannot really be approached with the transform controls in Adobe Camera RAW. Using the transform tools always effects the whole image and sometimes that isn’t what is required to get the best from your shot. Look at the two image below. The one on the left has a great foreground but the image as a whole is let down by the distortion on the trees and church in the back of the image. On the right I have adjusted just part of the image to give a better shot all round. It’s only a slight adjustment but it makes all the difference. It also brings the background slightly forward making a more pleasing composition. Watch the video on the next page to see how I went about this using a few tricks to get exactly what I wanted from the image. It’s not geared at the complete beginner it does help to have a little previous knowledge with using layers, masks and things like the clone tool and selection tools but if you was to follow the video you should be able to follow even with just the basics. I have provided the original image I used for this so you can practise. Just miss out the Lightroom part and load it straight into Photoshop to begin from that point. Here is a link to the file. Right click and select Save linked file As.... Download it to your own location.


LIGHTROOM BEGINNERS TUTORIALS with Kenneth Fisher Video 1 - Importing images from a computer Hi Lightroomers! In my previous Lightroom video last month we made a brand new empty catalogue. But what’s next? We open Lightroom and there are no images in it because we haven’t created any catalogue entries? So how do we make a catalogue entry? Well here’s how, we simply Import the images. Lightroom will then automatically create a thumbnail image, make a connection between the thumbnail and the original image and adds any metadata in the image to the catalogue. Hey presto the image is now available to use and the thumbnail appears in Lightroom, Ta Da……. In this video we take a look at Importing images that are already on your computer hard drive or an external drive. But what if the images are on a camera or card reader I hear you ask? .... Well that’s slightly different and we will be looking at how to do that in video 2.

If you cannot see the video or wish to view larger click the button right >

Keeping you on track on your photography journey 6

Video 2 - Importing from A Camera or Card Reader In the first video we imported images from the Computer, now here is how to import images into your catalogue from a camera and card reader.

Video 3 Workspace: Panels and Modules In this video I show you how to navigate your way around the Lightroom panels and modules so you’ll be finding your way around to make your workflow free of any headaches or stress.



Sheild Bug took with a Canon 50mm lens, a set of extension tubes and difussed flash. The prime lens is one of Canons cheapest lenses at less than ÂŁ100 so it shows you can still work on a budget

Macro photography is a wonderful and sometimes very challenging subject. That I think is what attracts me to this form of photography, there are no hard rules, there are no set in stone methods and there is lots of unique and sometimes very unorthodox ways of getting the shot your after. It’s also a subject that attracts different kinds of photographers with many different goals. There is the recorder, the person who wants to get shots to enable cataloguing species of insects, flowers etc. Shots that are took to identify a species and to show different areas of the subject which can also carry onto the form of Micro photography with shots took quite clinically for good reason. There is the artistic macro photographer being the person who wants to shoot an image with impact, style, abstract, close up shapes, textures or any matter different from the norm. There is also the nature photographer who really wants to combine both categories and capture wildlife in detail, up close and personal but also sometimes involving more of the environment of the subject with differing compositions rather than the clinical approach of the recorder. Then we have the extreme macro photographer the person who wants to get past the one to one zone and show subjects larger than life. This is the type of macro work I will be explaining in this article. I aim to cover many different approaches from the very simplest and cheapest equipment up to using specialised macro equipment without verging into the zones of what I would call micro photography took in lab type conditions. Method 1 - Single exposures, extension tubes and low cost equipment for macro photography I really want to make it clear from the word go that cheap methods if done correctly can capture fantastic images and should not be considered a second class method of capturing subjects larger than life. The stacking software can be a little more expensive if not shooting single images but well 8

worth purchasing if your getting serious about extreme macro. To master macro work there are 3 things to combat. These are depth of field, light and movement. All three combined make working close up a challenge, but one to take on-board and enjoy as it’s all part of the fun in this great form of photography to combat them. Being such a close distance to your subject means the depth of field is very shallow, meaning the in-focus area available when taking the shot can be minute. A few different things come into play here to take into consideration. First the size of the sensor on the camera. The larger the sensor the less the depth of field with a given lens. A full frame DSLR will have the least in focus, followed by a crop sensor DSLR, Micro 2/3rds and so on. For that reason some quite good looking images come from phones, compact camera’s when taking macro. They have small sensors with a big depth of field. However the larger the sensor the larger the image and the better the quality of the photo for print. Small sensors produce the most noise, full frame DSLRs the least. Therefore which camera you use will make a difference in one way or the other and it’s not wrong to use any form of camera to get your chosen subject. However when we come to take images past the one to one zone in the majority of cases it’s the DSLRs with the interchangeable lenses and the choice to fit extension tubes between the body and lens that will really come into their own. However there is some that can get into the same zone using both compact and bridge cameras by attaching macro attachments to their lenses. Some of these give very poor results but attachments such as the Raynox macro diopter lens can be used on DSLRs and Compact/Bridge cameras. Raynox Macro Diopter Lenses The Raynox macro attachments are a recommended way to start out in extreme macro because the electronic controls remain available (ie setting using Above: Raynox DCR 250 showing the adaptable aperture settings to change the F-stop) when used fitting for lenses with a 52-67mm filter thread on their own with a lens. The Raynox gives superb image quality if used correctly, and for a very rea- Below: A tiny Greenfly shot in a web with a 100mm sonable price too. They use an adjustable snap on lens with a Raynox DCR 250 attached. This is unfitting to attach it to your primary lens adapter that cropped took with a Canon 7D MKII DSLR fits any front thread from 52 to 67mm but you can also use rings and fittings to attach them directly and more rigidly if required and using various adapters it is perfectly possible to even stack them together. You could use a DCR150 and DCR250 stacked on a 50-200mm consumer zoom and it will work great. I personally often use them connected to the front of my 100mm macro lens when in the field to get that bit closer and I feel the DCR250 is the best choice to get into 9

the extreme zone area. For the best results with single shots use a flash and a small aperture of F16 or F18 to get a usable depth of field. Extension tubes Extension tubes are a great way to focus much closer to small subjects such as an insect or flowers without the expense and weight of buying and carrying a macro lens but you can also use macro lenses with them too and get even closer to your subject. I personally use Kenko AF extension tubes. They can be purchased in a set of 3 tubes, a 12MM, 20MM and 36MM. I have two sets and in some cases use four or 5 linked together. They are designed to enable a lens to focus closer than its normal set minimum focusing distance. Getting closer has the effect of magnifying your subject (making it appear larger in the viewfinder and in your pictures). Extension tubes are exceptionally useful for macro photography, enabling you to instantly convert almost any lens into a macro lens at a fraction of the cost while maintaining its original optical quality. Extension tubes have no optical lens they are simply a hollow tube. They are mounted in between the camera body and lens to create more distance between the lens and digital sensor or film plane. Moving the lens further away from the camera’s sensor forces it to focus much closer than normal. The greater the length of the extension tube, the closer the lens can focus. When an extension tube is used the lens focuses much closer than its normal close-focus distance. However, the lens focus range will be limited to a close focus distance while the extension tube is being used. During use the lens will not be able to focus to infinity. When you take the extension tube off and mount the lens back on the camera the lens will focus to infinity again. As the focal length of the lens increases the effect of the extension tube decreases. A 20MM extension tube when used with a 50MM lens will allow it to focus incredibly close, maybe to just a couple inches from the subject. The same 20MM extension tube when used on a 200MM lens will only reduce the minimum focus distance by a small amount, maybe only a few inches closer than without it. To use extension tubes with telephoto lenses be prepared to use the 36MM tube or a combination of the tubes together, using them combined on a shorter lens allows you to get really close! There is effective light fall off as light travels the length of the tube. A 12MM extension tube has an effective 2/3 light reduction,. The 20MM extension tube has a 1 stop light reduction and the 36mm has a 2 stop light reduction. This reduction will be calculated by your camera’s meter automatically with extension tubes that have the electrical contact with the camera body so if you are using automatic settings no adjustment is required the light metering will be accurate. However you can get extension tubes without the connection, these are cheaper and certainly do exactly the same job with the same quality. Of course with this type of extension you have to manual focus and use manual settings for your exposure, which to be fair is sometimes a preferred method anyway when taking extreme close up shots. Because of the low light when shooting really close a tripod or fixture 10

for the camera is a must with extreme work. Lenses May seem strange that I’ve left lenses till now but the truth of the matter is most lenses can be used for extreme macro photography. The main thing is use a prime lens, use a suitable focal length from around 50mm - 100mm will be the best starting point but others can be used. You can use macro lenses but it doesn’t have to be a necessity! A simple 50mm prime lens with extention tubes gives great results and gets you close. It’s the way you use the lens that is more important. You can reverse the lens and get great results, you can add a raynox, extension tubes .... or both! You can get special macro lenses designed to get you closer than 1:1, even to 5:1 in the case of Canon mounts if you wish. One of my favourite lenses I use for focus stacking is the Venus LAOWA 60mm f/2.8 2:1 Macro Lens. It’s completely manual and not a lens for the beginner, or anyone who hasn’t used a completely manual lens before but the sharpness is amazing and once mastered gives you 2x macro at a reasonable cost for a specialist lens. Combining the lens with extension tubes gets you even closer and I have achieved 5:1 using the combination. I’m also happy to say the company use my images to advertise their lens. The possibilities are endless lens wise and it really depends on what you want to spend, however all of the options mentioned can get you remarkable results and the specialist lenses are better left till you have mastered the techniques and splashing out on a lens that will be hard to master unless you have the previous knowledge. It would be impossible for me to cover all the options available without writing a book so use Google, Youtube and explore the options available. If you are new to macro and want to experiment however try a basic 50, 60 mm lens and get a couple of sets of extension tubes if you don’t already own a suitable lens. These will give great results and will also be useful for other forms of photography too. Working with light So at this stage lets stop and get into actually taking the shot with the camera. What are the things you need to be aware of, how do you go about taking a successful shot? Let’s imagine in the first scenario we are using a lens using metering and focus through the lens with an Extention Ring or Raynox attachment fitted. In all cases two things really need to be combated with all extreme closeups over the 1 to 1 ratio; the light and shallow depth of field, or focus range if you prefer. Working out how to get the best light depends if you are working in the field or you have a little in door setup for your macro work. Obviously if there is lots of natural light that will make things easier, however it’s not often enough on it’s own when working close. Your often working in your own shadow just to make things even harder! The other barrier is the shallow depth of field. To get over that problem we need to close up the aperture often to around F16 or above and that makes things even darker, we will need a slower shutter speed to get the required light without flash and that will be increasing the risk of a blurred shot through movement from either the photographer or the subject. The first stage then is to get some light from somewhere. Let’s think cheap in the first instance ... and cheap does not always mean the worst option it’s good to know. Most digital cameras have an onboard flash on top of the camera. So we can use this right? Well yes but there is still a problem, working with the Raynox or extention tubes means that we will be close to the subject and the flash will only light the top of the image or not at, the rest will be in the shadow of the lens. A way round this is to use a simple piece of white paper above the flash to bounce light onto the subject. This works surprisingly well! You can even do this by holding the camera in one hand and the camera in the other or there are many little D.I.Y. rigs people have devised using wire frames holding paper, 11

plastic, even table tennis balls etc. to achieve bouncing diffused light onto the subject with fantastic results and all for just a few pennies cost wise. Some good examples of this can be found here: Other advantages can be made using an off board flash this means you can position the flash to the side of the subject but it’s still important to diffuse the light. This will give a much more pleasing light than frontal light and will emphasise any textures more giving a less flat result. Going up in expense are devoted macro flash units or ring lites. I have a Canon ring lite which I love for my normal 1:1 macro work. It’s adjustable and gives great results. However for really closeup work it’s not so good. Throwing light around the lens does not work so well at very short distances as the light is flat plus shiny surfaced beetles and such like produce lots of highlights that are not pleasing, they simply do not give the best results. Macro Flashes on the other hand usually have arms with small flashes attached that allow you to position the light in any position and are a much better solution when working in the extreme closeup range in the field. They really help to enable to get the light in the perfect position and from varying angles. I also use a Loawa twin arm macro flash and it’s superb for close up macro in the field. However If your mainly working in a studio situation there are many alternatives you could use without the expense of a dedicated flash that would be of little use for other forms of photography I feel? Remember you don’t need to spend a fortune on lights always experiment with the cheaper solutions first and see what works for you best. I know a lot of top macro photographers that use nothing more than a flash, a sheet of paper, wire and elastic bands and get great images. When I work in my little home macro studio taking focus staked images in the house my main light sources are two or three cheap LED lamps and they give great results. Single image techniques working in the field Working in the field and getting extreme closeups and getting successful shots need patience and lots of photos. Use a large card and shoot, shoot, shoot! It can often be a case of getting one shot in twenty at times but getting that one can really be worth the effort. There are two ways of working, handheld photography, or using a tripod. I hate carrying a tripod around especially when working with insects that may be sitting on a branch one minute and next be on the floor. So am I saying don’t use a tripod? Not at all some people swear by it but if not using a tripod you 12

A Cranefly took with a 50mm Canon lens, Kenko extension tubes. Onboard camera flash bounced on to the subject with a piece of white kitchen paper held in the hand over the top of the flash and folded to bounce the light downwards over the subject

need to realise you have to get sharp images and the only way you will achieve that is by having lots of light so a flash and diffuser is top priority! We need to stop movement and we also need to use a small aperture to get enough depth of field (focus range) to make a good image. The part we concentrate on getting in focus is also important, the eyes of an insect or the heart of a flower is usually the part to concentrate on, get those right and the image will always look correct in most cases. Think about alignment also when composing your shot getting an insect like a long bodied insect try to get the body parallel to the lens and you will get more in focus. If your camera and lens enable you to autofocus then give it a go and see if you get results. If not try focusing manually. Set your focus to the distance you desire to work at then simply focus the lens by simply swaying the whole of your body slowly backwards and forwards to hit the focus point, it’s simple and it means you don’t have to touch the lens. Keep shooting to make sure you get that shot always take as many as you can to get that shot. It also keeps one hand free if you need to hold an off board flash or a reflector. Aperture is important you will need to be shooting at a minimum of F14 to F18 to get as much in focus as possible and you will need to be shooting at a shutter speed as high as possible to stop movement. This again emphasises the need of flash when working up really close as quite often any available light is often also shaded by the lens or your body making the subject even darker. I would start by using a flash and setting the camera to manual mode at around F16 and 1/125th of a second shutter speed. If your images are too dark then use a wider aperture (i.e. a lower F number) and try again constantly check your images as you go, images too light then use a smaller aperture or use a faster shutter speed. Carry spare batteries both for the camera and the flash if off board. Extreme macro using focus stacking and multiple images One way to overcome the extreme shallow depth of field when working really close up is to use a technique called focus stacking. This is when a number of shots are took each with a different focal point on the subject being photographed. These images are then put together by aligning the images and extracting the focused part of each shot and combining them together in a single destination 13

image. This can be done using specially designed software of which the two best known are Zerene Stacker and Helicon. Both have their for and against but I will stick my nose out and say I find Zerene to be the better of the two. First I will concentrate on the equipment required. Focus stacking is not really hard it just requires the right procedures and setting up prior to taking the photographs. We are talking of course about images that are larger than 1:1 in ratio and we need to understand the difficulties presented in taking a stack of images so that it will work successfully. The biggest of these problems is movement, we need to eliminate any possible movement of the subject plus we need the camera to be able to move towards the subject (or away from it) in a smooth transition with no side to side movement at all. Use an aperture that is the best suited to your lens usually around F6-F7 as the stacking gets the depth of field required. Imagine the completed shot below in your camera frame.

It’s not cropped at all it’s a full size image and the damselflies head measures just around 3 to 4 mm across maximum (For U.S. readers there are 25mm to the inch). Imagine then a slight movement of the lens of just 1mm would throw the whole stack out of alignment. Therefore we need stability and I found even a sturdy tripod was not enough as even a trembling of the traffic outside the house or a foot placed close to the camera could be enough to move the subject. So I went D.I.Y. and worked out that to eliminate movement if I put the camera and the subject on the same solid plane any movement would be transferred to both the camera and the subject and this just meant devising a little tabletop that both the camera and the subject could be mounted to. You don’t have to do this however another work round would to be to use diffused flash and much faster shutter speed. In this case however that makes hard work as I was using a manual lens with no electrical connection to the camera which means working totally in the dark at those settings for flash. I have to use powerful lights to get the focus of the first shot but once I have the first lined up and in focus it’s simply a matter of moving the focus rail forward at a small increment and taking another shot I don’t need to check or make adjustments I just need to check occasionally to see where the line of focus is as to when to stop taking the shots at the point where the focus is at the last point I require. It’s also much easier to work with a dead specimen when using this technique and there isn’t any requirement to 14

kill a live specimen! All of the shots I have used come from insects found in my garden or on roadsides exception to that being a wasp that was swatted on entering my living room! To see the way I shoot my extreme macro shots watch the video on the following page which explains my techniques and equipment I use, then we will move onto how to stack the images once we have the shots downloaded from the camera.

So there is the equipment I use but any method along these lines where you can stabilise your camera and subject should work just fine. The next video shows how to stack the images using Zerene Stacker software.


Left: A Cuckoo Wasp using my stacking methods shown in the videos. I used a Canon 7D MK2 camera, a Laowa Venus 60mm 2;1 Macro lens with a complete set of 3 extention tubes using LED lamps for illumination that have white and brown lights which gives those nice highlights to the eyes. The insect was found dead in my water butt in the garden, quickly fished out whilst fresh and placed carefully on a cocktail stick to take the shot. I also used a small amount of super glue to stop any movement whilst taking the shot. This is really tricky work to get the insect to look natural and I use small artists paint brushes and a magnifying glass to position legs and antennae. It sometimes comes with some muttered unmentionable words too when all does not go to plan! The background also needs some thought I often use coloured card, photographs or even an iPad displaying a picture to add colour when required. In this case I used just a dark card. Below: Same techniques used for a male Common Blue Damselfly.


Top: A common Wasp again showing the powerful jaws. Above: A Bumble Bee



Above: A member of the wasp family I have not identified but these are so tiny and my garden had masses of them this year. This one was plucked from a Spiders web. Below: A very small member of the Hoverfly family and one of my most extreme macros the head width was around 2mm. I used two complete sets of extention tubes with The Laowa Venus 60mm.


Links to useful equipment and Software for the Extreme Macro Photographer

My little DIY table top stacking studio in use showing a Blue Damselfly mounted ready to be photographed. Using a Laowa 60mm 2:1 macro lens and one 12mm and two 35mm extention tubes I was able to fit that tiny insects head to fill the entire frame. Below: The focus rack an important part of focus stacking to get good results. Make sure you read reviews and make sure the one you select is sturdy during operation as reducing movement is paramount to getting great results.

Some links to Software for Focus Stacking you may find useful. Here is good tip take your images first before installing any software if your new to the game. Then download the software as a trial and you will usually get 30 days of trial before making a decision giving you plenty of time with the shots already completed to give them a work over. Zerene Stacker: Helicon: 20

Macro photography and lens diffraction Something that often turns up in discussions especially with macro photography is a matter called lens diffraction. However the same is true for all images took with a camera not just macro so to end my macro article I thought I would go over a few pointers to clarify any questions that may emerge! What is Lens Diffraction? Basically it is what most photographers talk about when small aperture setting (F stops) are used and the photograph softens in detail. It’s certainly no myth it’s a physical thing that happens when the light enters your camera and hits the sensor that records your photograph. Wide apertures let in lots of light into your camera through the aperture of your lens so the light that hits the sensor is at it’s best with no diffraction or blurring. However when the aperture is closed up the light going through the hole of the aperture gets diffused spreading out in a less solid beam of light when it hits the sensor. To see this effect see the images following showing the effect when the light hits the sensor shown at a microscopic view.

Wide Aperture

Medium Aperture

Small Aperture


So from that information we can see that an open aperture gives the best light and detail ..... however it also gives the least depth of field or focus. The smaller the aperture the more in focus, the bigger the depth of field. So If we were to shoot a macro shot at F4 say with a DSLR camera only a tiny bit would be in focus. That bit in focus however would be more detailed than if we used F18. Despite which at F18 more would be in focus so actually it would look better from that aspect. Basically it’s a trade off when you shoot a single exposure in extreme macro shots we need a small aperture otherwise everything but a slither of focus will be available. Plus the effect will not be that noticeable unless we crop the image by a large amount and the whole reason of getting close in the first case is to avoid much of a crop if not to avoid at all. In my experience I often shoot at F18 with a single shot and a bit of sharpening gets rid of any unsharp areas in post production. Going above that things do start to lose detail try to avoid going above if possible but don’t be scared to give anything a try because despite all the physics and maths in photography only one thing matters .... does it look good to the eye? And 9 times out of ten the majority will with a little sharpening. Below is a shot using a 100mm macro lens and a Raynox DCR 250 macro lens attachment at F18. Do you see a loss of clarity?

Obviously there is a loss of focus working close with a single shot but the area in focus is tack sharp so always test your shots with the eye, not by listening to photography physicians. When we come to focus stacking images the fact we have little depth of field really does not come into the equation. We are shooting a stack to overcome the small depth of field so therefore we want to shoot images with the aperture set to the best the lens can perform with, so usually around F5 to F8 max. On top of that remembering back to the section on extension tubes a 36mm tube has a 2 stop light reduction and we may be using many tubes in some cases to get close. However again don’t let the physics defer you from trying anything because until you have that image up on your computer screen you will never know exactly the outcome of quality to your image, your eyes are the decider! That ends my article I hope it gives lots of people the urge to go out and try it for themselves and for those who produce a great extreme macro shot then post it to and we will include some in the magazine in the near future. 22

FOCUS ON THE PHOTOGRAPHER - Cris Janson-Piers Cris Janson-Piers started out in photography at the age of 17 and is now 55 years old. After Studying A level photography he secured a position within his local tabloid as a press photographer. Here he was used to plucking film from his camera straight after and event or incident, taking it into the darkroom and preparing the prints to be placed on the editors desk, usually all on the same day. Not like today where he can press a button and his image can be anywhere in the World within seconds. A well published and an award winning photographer, Cris had his own studio from his early years, now working in the corporate, marketing and journalistic sector and he was also a Sub Editor for several years of a National magazine. His interest in sport, wildlife, live music and people in general further enabled him to diversify into these areas, which in turn produces the flair in his work today. Cris now also passes on his knowledge in the way of teaching groups or on a one to one basis and also delivers seminars and talks to photographic groups and societies. Cris says..... “I offer a personal, friendly, but professional service, I am very easy to work with and have a great understanding of what the customer requires. All my work, whether it be for the individual or for a large corporation receives the same undivided attention to detail in order to allow me to produce work of the highest standard every time”. Cris receives many testimonials from the individual right through to Directors of corporate companies and they rather speak for themselves. He is also very active in following animal conservation and he actually donates some of his wildlife and captive animal imagery free of charge to good causes and educational establishments. “I’m a Yorkshire lad, now living in Retford Nottinghamshire UK. I am still just 12 minutes away from my work which is still in Yorkshire. I work in three main areas within my own business, the BFKKO and even if they do sound diverse they do fit together nicely. I run a Martial Arts Organisation and supply Security and Close Protection Services, but within it we do have a marketing department which I run solely and this is where my photography comes in. I extend my services from behind the lens into many areas, although I do not cover wedding photography or standard portraiture. I tend to base my work 23

around Corporate, Professional, Commissions and deliver seminars and teach photography also. Photographic work can be seen at When asks what drives me in photography I suppose there are two areas as although I get paid professionally I still love taking the professional photographers head off and just going out in my spare time with my lighter photographic set ups and having fun. I like landscape photography, but I do not think it is my strongest area but what I do know is it puts me at one with our beautiful World and nature and lets me relax and that is a great gift, not to be taken for granted. So what drives me, well it’s the same in both I suppose? I like being creative. When I first look at a proposed image or an angle, the first thing I do is then think to myself, so how can I make this different? From my press days, we were always taught to get the safety shot first, which I still do now. But then I start to look around. So my drive is always to create the best possible image I can, sometimes revisiting a shoot to better it! When asked what are the highlights of my career, there are a few and not all in photography as both my partner and I have had International sports success and I have coached her to being 9 times World Professional K1 and Kickboxing Champion under the World governing body. In photography two things stand out, actually both from my press days. Covering the miners strike on the front lines and portraying the story from both the Miners and the Polices side. Those were hard days full of tension and sometimes full of fear when things broke out. The other is when I wasn’t working, but as always with camera in hand and my image made the Front page of the Star Newspaper when I captured the arrest of an armed bank robber outside a Bank in Sheffield. When it was all over and the adrenalin had disappeared I realised my little Pentax ME Super had only a 50mm lens on it and how near I was to the actual action! My ambitions in my photography are to be as best as I can all the time and to keep on learning too. I do donate my wildlife work to organisations involved in conservation and I find this very rewarding. So I gather it is safe to say that one of my goals it to make sure I also continue to support the plight of all the people who are working hard to not see none of our animals become extinct. If I had access to any one area to photograph it has to be hands down going out to help document wildlife and conservation, although this would not be paid it would be so rewarding. If I had was asked the same question about paid work it would be to be involved in photographing all the top Pro sports all over the World, especially winter or extreme sports. Recently my work has been varied, from covering medical teaching procedures, to product and commissioned photography. And again unpaid, I covered Retfords Remembrance Day in the Town square. Very touching and I believe I captured an image which didn’t even need a caption. My Equipment is extensive and I am just about to upgrade again. My Cameras 24

include the Nikon D500, Nikon D810, Nikon D750, Nikon D700, Nikon D200 that are used with the following lenses: Nikkor 300mm f2.8 and Converters, Nikkor 70-200mm f2.8, Nikkor 14-24mm f2.8, Nikkor 24-70mm f2.8, Nikkor 35mm, Nikkor 50mm, Sigma 800mm prime f5.6 and aTokina AT-X Pro 100mm f2.8. I use a Canon 7d with 300mm and 1.4 Extender, and a Sony A6000 with 70-200mm f4 pro lens. Plus 4 prime lenses. Carbon Fibre Tripod/Monopod and full flash and studio lighting. Full Macro set up. A Sony Video Camera as I still prefer to have video on a separate unit to my DSLR’s. As you will see I use a wide array of equipment and manufacturers...why you ask? Many different reasons, but mainly because I feel I know what works best for which situation. Some need quality and no need for speed, but some, such as sports require a high frame rate and fast buffering. I use my Sony because it delivers pin sharp results consistently and is light and easy to handle, usually coming inside the baggage allowance for travel even as a full set up. Even though the D700 and D200 are lower megapixels than todays modern cameras, they both deliver fantastic imagery if the image is derived from a non cropped full frame image. The D700 also has a really high frame rate when used with Eneloop batteries or the secret “tweek” is used. My Canon 7D is used for most of my Wildlife and Donation type work now as it is robust and the 300mm f4 lens is one of Canons hidden gems. I did much hands on research with all the “L” lenses from Canon which were 300mm prime or incorporated 300mm and this one came out tops. (Yes the 300mm f2.8 is also beautiful, but at a price and as I have this on my Nikon gear I classed it as a non-economical purchase). The Nikon D810 is one on its own for Studio work and any corporate work which may need large enlargements or posters etc. I have used it for sport and with great success but it does lack in the frame rate department. It is also beautifully matched to my 800mm prime lens. The D750 was the full frame addition to my sports gear and is very capable, however the D500 was my best buy as an all round camera. Whilst it is a DX body giving a crop factor is still produces amazing imagery and with a Pro XQD card I can shoot in Raw and Fine Jpeg at full speed to my hearts content. I also feel by using different manufacturers it helps me speak the same language when I am teaching students, especially when it is camera specific. Next Cameras I am looking at Sony RX10 mk III, saying that there are just a few niggles which are sort of holding me back...maybe the RX10 mk IV might have all my needs? (An in the bag camera as I call them) and the new Sony A7r.”

“Rhino” A composite image by Cris


“BRAVING THE ELEMENTS”: Nikon D800 80400mmf4.5-5.6 Nikkor 1/400 f9 @390mm 800 ISO

“COMING OUT OF THE DEPTHS”: Nikon D500 70-200mm f2.8 Nikkor 1/640 f8 @116mm 1250 ISO

Following pages 2 waterfall shots by Cris “AT ONE WITH NATURE”: Sony A6000 Sigma 19mm Art Lens 1.3 seconds @f11 100iso polariser and a x4 ND filter DRO set to 2. Processed in PSP6. “NATURES CUP” Sony A6000 Sigma 19mm Art Lens 0.6 seconds @f11 19mm polariser and a x4 ND filter DRO set to 2. Processed in PSP6. 26



A contender for the RAW file editor throne?

A new RAW file editor and much more! A first look at the On1 RAW pre-release with Les Arnott

It’s been a long wait for the release of the ON1 RAW software but at last the release date is announced and a pre-release given out to it’s customers who have pre-paid for the release. Still not completed however but the pre-release is a bit of a blow softener for those waiting patiently to see if all the hype is justified? The man at the top of ON 1 Craig Kuedell gave out this message on the ON1 blog dated the 23rd November when the pre-release was made available: “The ON1 Photo RAW Pre-release was sent out into the wild today. I am both excited and a bit nervous as this is by far the biggest, most challenging development project we have ever undertaken at ON1 and to be honest, it has taken us longer than we had hoped. I am so proud of our dedicated and extremely talented team for their tireless

efforts to get us to this release. I assure you, and I can’t stress this enough, we have so much more cool stuff coming your way in December and 2017. With ON1 Photo RAW, we now have a completely new architecture, modern raw processing engine and GPU imaging pipeline that will bring you blazing performance, ease of use and photographic results you have never seen from ON1 before. This pre-release is just that, a pre-release. To be completely transparent, there are bugs, several of them, there are features missing and yes, a few crashers too. DO NOT worry though, they will be fixed… very soon. The comments in this post are not just marketing speak, they are our unwavering, 100% committed promises to you, our valued customer. We will work tirelessly toward the December 19 ship date and beyond. So, work with us through this pre-release period as our photography future together is very bright. You have my word, we will not disappoint. Thank you. - Craig Keudell” So a lot of promises there to fulfil but I’m sure they will deliver to improve what already looks to be an astounding step forward in the workings of their software. I also feel it could be a real threat l to Adobe Lightroom, especially for the customers who are not big users of Photoshop and just want a single one off payment to own a RAW editor that performs as well as the current leading program and also has the ability to catalogue images and add some fantastic inbuilt effects and presets. What really wins the game for me is the inclusion of layers that allows you to add effects and settings non destructively and with the ability to change the opacity of each layer to give total control over the image in every step with making options on top for each layer. That is something Adobe Lightroom cannot match with no layer availability. Something to mention is there are differences in the way it works compared to Lightroom, the main difference being when you are viewing images you are not looking at catalogues as you do in Lightroom. In Lightroom the program creates an indexing system that builds previews, when your looking at these previews in Lightroom you are not looking at the actual file, just a small copy of it. Imagine a clothes catalogue that you hold and view through, you can order things from it you can see images of the clothes but the real items are stuck away in a warehouse somewhere out of sight. However when you look at your files in On1 RAW you are looking at a browsing facility, i.e. you are in the warehouse looking at the real items just like when you use your file system browser on you PC or Mac. In some cases I actually prefer this system. Catalogues can become corrupted in Lightroom. If you go in your browser and delete or move a file then Lightroom cannot detect that. Just like the clothes catalogue when something runs out of stock it doesn’t change the fact it’s still in the catalogue, we don’t know till we order the item to find out it’s not there. We have to re-sync the folders in Lightroom of relocate the missing files. Using a browser system like ON1 means what you see is 29

live, if the items out of stock you physically see the fact instantly. Adobe Bridge also works in a similar way being a browser, however the big difference between Bridge and ON1 RAW is Bridge can be dreadfully slow, especially when looking at folders with many files, ON1 has developed a way to view the files much faster, infact just as fast as using Lightroom’s catalogue system. Importing images to your system using Lightroom is automated once you have selected the location for the files to be stored it will do a good job of taking over, referencing and putting them into a filing system on your PC or Mac ....... if you wish it too that is? Many professionals actually create their own filing system, then point Lightroom in the right direction which makes good sense as you don’t end up spending hours looking for files if using different software to Lightroom. In ON1 RAW you have to physically import the files to a location you create, then you browse that location in the software to see your images so you need to understand how to create folders and understand some basic file management first. It does mean mind it’s very easy just to click on your SD card in ON1 and just flick through your files straight away before having to import them. It’s quite often nice to do that when returning from a shoot. It is always best to import them before processing however, although you could do this direct from the card it’s a better method of working not to do so. In the RAW development department both Lightroom and ON1 RAW have similar features and capabilities so really it’s down to which the user feels more comfortable with, both will give you great results and both give you the feature of forwarding the processed RAW onto other software if you require to enhance or edit further. However only ON1 RAW also has lots of it’s own effects inbuilt within the software and is capable of creating a product from start to finish and all with editable layer control without having to delve into 3rd party programs or plugins. The fact that the development and effects can be applied on separate layers is the part that excites me most about ON1 RAW and it really gives great control over the overall development of an image. Let’s follow up with a Video from myself followed on the next pages with over 3 hours of recorded video from the ON 1 team from their Live On1 RAW event which basically gives you a complete outlook of the software.


The On1 RAW Event - The complete overlook of the product from the ON1 RAW team themselves. Session 1

Session 2


Session 3

My final words .... So my conclusion at this precise time on this new software: It’s exciting that a new approach has been given to the development of a RAW files. It’s a real contender for people who don’t want to be tied into A Creative Cloud license and to be able to do a vast array of things within one package that comes with a one off payment. The inclusion of layers and masks is a big step forward in RAW conversion. A fast live preview feature of files folders in some ways may benefit some people rather than using catalogue previews. The developers are working well with their customers to make sure they deliver what their customers want from the software. The downsides. It’s took a long time and still not completed. There will be continuing updates throughout next year to get the product they originally promised way back early in 2016. I’ll be back with a second part to this when the majority of things are working in the full release version. Les Arnott - December 2016


FOCUS ON THE PHOTOGRAPHER - Daniel Charnitsky Daniel Charnitsky is a Photography enthusiast from Glassboro, New Jersey USA. I was really impressed with his photography when introduced to it by Phototrain’s Training Editor Kenneth Fisher and decided to find some information about his work and what drives his passion for photography.

Here is Daniels story in his own words and images I’m sure the readers will be as impressed as Phototrain was!

“Windmill Sunset” This image was taken in Kinderkijk Village, Netherlands in 2011

“I am a Photography Enthusiast living on the east coast of the United States - New Jersey to be specific. I travel a lot and photograph different areas and cultures to satisfy my personal satisfaction. My work is presented on my web site I find it important to recognize that photography deals with many different lighting styles - natural, flash, or a combination of both. In essence, photography is basically “Expressions of Light” – thus ... the title of my web site. Landscape and Candid Portrait photography are my primary interests, although all forms of photography inspire me. I try not to specialize in any one aspect of photography. Learning different forms and types of photography keeps me constantly interested and from getting into a photography funk. My drive in photography is challenging myself to learn different styles and techniques that I see online and from various workshops that I attend. My ambition is to become better known for my artistry so that I can share what photography talents I have with those that may be just starting out. I have won several Professional Photographer Association awards with a number of large canvases hanging in Georgetown University Hospital in Washington, DC and Veterans Hospitals in Nashville, TN. A number of my black and white photos from Cuba are currently on display in a gallery in California. I was also a guest blogger on Rick Sammon’s web site. All of these achievements, gives me that personal satisfaction which keeps me interested and motivated in photography.” We asked Daniel if he had access to any one person he could meet concerning photography who would it be, and what would be his top of the list to shoot if he had access to any subject? 33

“The person that I would love to study with in person is Peter Estway from Australia. I find his work to be absolutely captivating. His capture and post production work is perhaps the finest in the world. Since he lives so far from the United States, I have to resort to watching his You Tube video tutorials. The subject that I would love to photograph is the landscapes of Iceland where I hope to travel to next spring.” We asked what was his current or latest subject that he had photographed or processed? “My most current work as a photographer was for a Charity Celebrity Cancer Benefit Gala where I photographed Paula Abdul, The Demers Brothers, and Higher Ground. Prior to that gala, I travelled to Cuba where I photographed the Cuban People in Black and White. I am extremely proud of this work that showed the happiness in the people despite their unfortunate conditions. “Cuban Innocence” This image was taken on a street photography excursion while in Havana Cuba. The smile was typical of most all of the street images I captured. 34

“Stormy Sunset” This image was taken in the Midwest United States during a trip of Parks and Canyons Tour.

Here is a link to these black and white street images.”

Above: “Rolling Hills” This image was taken while on a tour of Dunedin, New Zealand. The light was amazing.

Below ”Philadelphia City Scape” This image was taken from atop a hot air balloon ride from the Philadelphia Zoo. The image was taken with a polarizer filter attached.:


“Cycling Home” This image was taken at the spur of the moment. I turned around and snapped the image. I didn’t realize what I had captured until I downloaded it when I returned home. It merited a Blue Ribbon at a Professional Photographers Association Competition. The Image was captured in Maastricht, Netherlands

We asked Daniel what is his main equipment camera and lens wise, and does he have any strong reasons why he loves working with them? “I shoot with a Canon 5D Mark II. I have two favourite Canon lenses: 1) 70-200 f2.8 IS – I love the compression and bokeh that I get when shooting closeups; 2) 17-40 f4.0 – this very sharp lens gives me the wide angle I like for landscapes.”

The man behind the glass - Daniel Charnitsky 36

“Beautiful Blues” This image was taken at the Notre Dame Basilica in Montreal, Canada. This is a one shot hand held - image (not a HDR image). I call this a lucky capture.

“Curious Girls” This image was taken during a tour of Cuba while having lunch at a restaurant. The black and white rendering perfectly captures what I saw when taking the image. 37

“Living Large” This butterfly picture was taken in my backyard in New Jersey when I was focusing on macro photography.

"Cuban Night Scape" This image was captured from a hotel room in Havana, Cuba. 38


Hi Photoshoppers! This month I bring you 4 more videos that follow on from last months tutorials for Photoshop CC 1. Foreground and Background Colour Keyboard Shortcuts 2. The New Select and Mask in the new 2017 version


3. The New Improved Type Tool

4. The Improved Properties Panel


THE PHOTOTRAIN PHOTOGRAPHY COMPETITION WINNERS We have seen some fantastic images posted over the last 2 months following the launch of our Facebook weekly Phototrain Photography Competition. Competitors can post one image daily to try their luck to get featured in the magazine and get a winners Gold Award plus 2 runners up also get featured on our Website Competition Gallery which can be viewed here : Competition Gallery Wish to join the fun? If you are a Facebook member use this link to join the competition and show us what you can do with your photographs: Facebook Phototrain Photo Competition See this months selections over the next pages. Judges for this month was Graham Orgill and Les Arnott.


WINNER 14th November 2016 Annemarie Clinton Judged by Graham Orgill

Judges comments: “A superbly captured expression on the face of this Impish youngster. Beautifully framed with the faux fur of the hat, a very bold composition with the finger clearly sending the message to the viewer. Great eye contact- works well in mono.” Canon 5D Mark III, 85mm lens f1.8, 1/2500, ISO 800.

Annemaries comments: “The model is Nica ... a real little performer! On this particular day I was hoping to capture the way she uses her eyes when expressing herself ... she didn’t disappoint! Her biggest dream at age 9 is to be on the cover of a magazine!” Hopefully we fulfilled her dream a little by placing her on the cover this month. (Editor)


WINNER 21st November 2016 Jacobs Chong Judged by Les Arnott

Judges Comments: “A stunning view with a magical sky skilfully framed with interesting foreground subjects. A classic composition showing great use of the thirds creating a lovely natural, well balanced image”

Canon 7D, Canon EF24-105mm f/4L IS USM. ISO 100, F13, 1/8s Jacobs comments; ”I’m inspired by whatever I see; colours of the sky probably are the attractor, but the unique clouds also in the major factor for this picture.”


WINNER 28th November 2016 Anita Gowing Judged by Graham Orgill

Judges comments: “Good technical control of shutter speed to freeze the action, of aperture to create perfect depth of field. Great control of exposure to retain detail in the white feathers. Complimentary background with no distractions along with perfect timing. Such a stunning photograph, well done Anita.”

5D MkIII, lens Canon 400mm f/5.6L - exif: f/5.6 1/1000s ISO 400. Anita’s comments: In PS CS6, the original image was selected using Refine Edge to remove it from the original background & saved with a layer mask. A new textured background was placed on a layer below. On the gull layer mask I used a large soft brush at low opacity to expose some of the water & blend with the new background.


WINNER 5th December 2016 Angela Hill Judged by Graham Orgill

Judges comments: A great landscape. Good composition with excellent choice of shutter speed and exposure. Good point of view with great lighting on the background. Well captured Angela Nikon D3200 with a 10-20mm wide angle lens with Hitech ND filters. ƒ/22, 15 seconds ISO 100

Angela’s comments: This is Buachaille Etive Mór Waterfall, located in Glencoe and one of the most photographed scenes in Scotland.


WINNER 12th December 2016 Louise Morris Judged by Graham Orgill

Judges comments “A great capture beautifully exposed and sharp giving superb detail. A good composition utilising the thirds, with a lovely reflection of the water rail.. A subtle background with good tonal range and complimentary colours. Well done Louise!” Canon 1Dx and 100-400mm mark II lens @160mm - f6.3, ISO 1600, -1/3, 1/320, evaluative metering

Louise’s comments: “Taken 2nd December 2016, Scottish Photography Hides in Kircudbright - lay about 4 inches at most above the water on 3 scaffold planks and 2 dog beds on a metal raft!!!! The things we do!! Taken around 10:30am in beautiful golden light - thanks to the glorious weather we had. Looking down a channel in the river with reeds either side that helped with the reflected light.”




Phototrain photography magazine issue 2  
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