Me and ME (Multiple Exposure)

I have been somewhat occupied of late. A creative project has taken over. So much so that I have slipped to only blogging once or twice a month. I thought I had better pull myself together, and what better way than to blog about what has been swallowing my time.

Over the last six weeks or so I have been developing a new online course in Multiple Exposure (ME) and Intentional Camera Movement (ICM). That has involved developing learning materials in different formats (for all you different types of learners out there); there are Cheat Sheets, talking head slideshow videos, on location videos, an eBook and of course photography activities for you to practice the new skills.

The only thing is, I have to complete all the activities too. And I get creatively distracted. This is because at the same time as working on the online course, I am also creating ME and ICM photos for my project Pandemia. Sometimes the two blend into each other. Yesterday for example I spent 4 hours walking around the Gower creating ICM photos for the new course and then when I had finished editing them I spent another hour or so reviewing which, if any of them, could make the Pandemia shortlist.

Let me show you what I mean. First I need to go back a few days and talk about one of the four ME Modes. There is a ME mode on some advanced digital cameras called Additive. This mode adds all the light exposure from one exposure to the next, layering the photos and getting brighter each time you do it. If you went on for the maximum possible (9 exposures) you end with an almost white exposure! Not much use in that I thought.

I decided to experiment and discovered that 3 layered exposures seemed to be a maximum. Then when I edited them in Lightroom and rescued some of the highlights more colour and pattern emerged. Here’s an example.

When I first saw this I thought Wow! What can I do with that? More experiments followed, the Pollyanna Principle was fully in play. Fortunately, I noticed and pulled back on my excitement. Then I started to push at the edges of what was possible, and how I might be able to control the colours. You can find out more in the new Online Course, of course!

Then yesterday I spent 4 hours playing with ICM on a 5 mile circular walk on the Gower Peninsula. I’m fortunate to be able to live only 20 minutes drive from one of the UK’s top beaches; Three Cliffs Bay. I parked a couple of miles away in a tiny hamlet and walked through a very muddy tree lined valley, then dunes and river to the beach. Along the way I experimented with different types of intentional movement and shutter speed. Vertical for vertical things – trees for example; Horizontal for horizontal things – the horizon for example; and distinct twisting and swooping movements for subjects. Here’s my favourite photo from the walk.

As you can see there is a huge amount of scope with ME and ICM photography to create photos that evoke different feelings; that is why I am using them for Pandemia. This project will share some of my strongest images from this year of chaos. Each one illustrating a different feeling experienced during these challenging times. I plan to share the exhibition initially online in 2021. Stay tuned!

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