Our Photography Courses Blog - Camera Cafe, Central London

Nick’s pics from the BM

Posted in Camera Cafe, Central London on May 29th, 2013 by Phil – Comments Off

We had a small group at the camera cafe made smaller by a emergency callout, but it gave Nic and Phil plenty of time to nose around the British Museum. Apart from making people disappear, we concentrated on filling the frame with the subject and trying to get rid of distractions. This is done a great job here in both respects:



The camera cafe is expanding! Coming soon there will be gallery space for us to use. If you have not been to the camera cafe this is a perfect opportunity, they also have recently started to do camera repairs on-site. Listening to them talking about flashguns on Saturday was a delight, we should all buy our equipment from guys like this, not giant multinational corporations.

Check them out here for the cafe and here for the camera shop. A lovely quirky place to go for our London photogarphy courses.

Making people disappear at the British Museum

Posted in Camera Cafe, Central London on May 26th, 2013 by Phil – Comments Off

It’s good fun to make people disappear by using long exposures. All you need is a fairly dark location and a firm camera position. By putting the camera on the steps here at the British Museum and using a range of exposures from six seconds to half a second you can see the visitors disappearing as their movement blurs them into obscurity.






In order to lengthen the exposure, you need to reduce the ISO to the minimum value. This makes the camera less sensitive to light and therefore requires longer shutter speeds. Then it’s a case of using shutter priority – S or Tv and setting shutter speed long enough to blur things away as required.

They do not allow tripods in the British Museum, and obviously these sorts of shutter speeds are impossible to hand hold. So in this picture Phil rested the camera on a sign and used the cameras timer to keep it still. The idea was to capture the timelessness of the Egyptian statue and the ephemeral nature of tourism. Either that or just have some blurry stuff to look cool.


Give it a go, it’s as easy as it looks!

Wide-angle lens at the British Museum

Posted in Camera Cafe, Central London on May 23rd, 2013 by Phil – Comments Off

It’s not just small terriers that benefit from the interesting perspective you get close up with a wide-angle lens. one of the problems of shooting in a crowded environment like the British Museum is that there is an awful lot of clutter in your picture, and the objects are so large that you have to stand back to get them in, so you get him lots of Japanese tourists, bemused teenage foreigners, and Greeks have come to see their own marble statues. A wide-angle lens enables you to get in very close, cut out a lot of the clutter in the background and still fill the frame with the object you’re after. Trying to teach a photography course in London in tourist season, this can be very useful.

Bronze statue from Pompeii, obviously!

Bronze statue from Pompeii, obviously!


Lichfield called the difference between a wide-angle and a telephoto lens the difference between using a big net and a high-powered rifle. It’s a different view, but quite a useful one in a tricky situation and the fisheye effect when not overdone can make an interesting picture.



If you go here you can buy one of these lenses on Amazon. There is a similar version of the Tamron lens for Canon cameras. In terms of bangs for your buck, this is one of the best lenses for changing the way your photographs look for not much money.

Central London photography course at the Camera Cafe

Posted in Camera Cafe, Central London on November 11th, 2012 by Phil – Comments Off

We had a lovely day yesterday at the Camera Cafe in Bloomsbury, and went for our usual stroll in the British Museum.  It’s great to get in close (“If it’s good enough you’re not close enough” – Robert Capa) however at the British Museum you do tend to set the alarms off.  Not naming any names here!!

It was very busy at the British Museum, but you’d never know it from these pictures.

Here’s one picture from each of the seven people who came – a variety of skills and camera types, but a similar amount of enthusiasm and creativity in achieving the shots that are different from the average: