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13 Aug 2016
Airbus A380 Emerged from Clouds

Monster A380 emerging from the clouds

While I was in London we visited Hyde Park and there was an approach to Heathrow on the far side of the park, running parallel to the direction in which I was walking. I spotted an A380 in the distance and saw it was going to have to pass through a series of clouds. My aim was to capture the amazing Airbus Super Jumbo as it emerged from the clouds. The last time I saw one as close was when […]

11 Aug 2016
Deer in Doneraile Park

Doneraile Park, County Cork, Ireland

Cork has some great spots to visit and one of these is the town of Doneraile and it’s famous Doneraile park. The vast spaces of Doneraile park have everything from deer and sheep to swans and squirrels. If you have a camera and enjoy walks then this is the place for you. Doneraile Park comprises approximately 160 hectares of estate land with groves of deciduous trees, a stately home, many water features amongst much more which you can discover during a […]

10 Aug 2016
Some of the Flowers on Garnish Island

A Visit to Garnish Island, Co. Cork

I visited Garnish when I was about 12 years old and I recall that you left the harbour on the mainland, with the typical Irish fields and views and ended up on this paradise type island. The island had plants I had never seen before and as a child it seemed like you were after being transported to paradise. I had the chance to revisit Garnish Island recently and it was just as special. Garnish Island, often referred to as […]

09 Aug 2016
Helicopter about 500m away taken with the 70-300mm Canon zoom lens.

A 300mm lens is worth having in your camera bag

I have a few lenses – Canon 24-105 L lens, a Tamron 10-24 wide angle, a Canon 50mm prime lens and a 70-300mm Canon zoom lens (f4.0,non L type). On a recent walk in Ardmore Co. Waterford I ended up having the zoom lens on the camera 90% of the time.  Firstly the Coastguard helicopter went over, which is why I put the zoom lens on in the first place. After that, I wanted to scan the ocean incase there […]

08 Aug 2016
Samson Crane Ardmore, August 2016

Samson has fallen on Hard Times

The Samson was a floating crane-ship which was under tow from Liverpool, UK to Valetta, Malta. On 11th December just off the Welsh coast, the towline snapped in a force 7 south easterly gale. The crane ship floated for many miles and eventually ended up on the rocks at Ardmore near Rams Head on 12th December around 8am. On 7th Jan 2011 I uploaded my first shot of the Samson, click here to read it, but on a walk this […]

04 Aug 2016
The wonderful Morbid & Son, which was a performance about a Victorian undertaker family desperate for new business.

Waterford Spraoi – Photos from Waterford Spraoi 2016

The Spraoi festival takes place every year during the August Bank Holiday Weekend in Waterford, Ireland. It is a festival of street performance, music and theatre plus some spectaculars which normally happen at key times in the evening. The Spraoi festival will be 25 years old next year and this 3 day festival culminates in a parade and fireworks display. Below are some photos from this years Spraoi Festival.                  

14 Feb 2016
Co Kerry, Parknasilla, Ireland

Sneem & Parknasilla, Co. Kerry, Ireland

Just after Christmas and on the day of the arrival of Storm Frank, I visited Co. Kerry and the picturesque area around Sneem. Staying at the Parknasilla hotel there were many walks near by and the break in the weather the day after Storm Frank allowed for some exploration of the area. There are many facets to the walks in and around Parknasilla, including costal sections, inland marshes and rivers as well as a small climb to give an amazing […]

06 Jan 2016
Punting on the Avon on a lazy Sunday afternoon at Stratford Upon Avon, UK

Photo Review of 2015

2015 is over and 2016 is barely a few days old. I decided to look back at a few of the my photos from 2015. I didn’t really update the site much in 2015 but I’m hoping to remedy that in 2016 with some weekly posts and hopefully I will restart the Project 52 which will see one key photo per week being uploaded to the site.. Some of the highlights of 2015 and my favourite photos are listed below; Glastonbury Festival This […]

06 Oct 2015
Tramore and the Metal man

Tramore Photo Shortlisted on Morris Oil Calendar 2016

I am delighted that one of my photos was shortlisted for the Morris Oil Calendar 2016. The shot of Tramore and the Metal Man has been selected under the theme “Friendly, Reliable, Local” in this photo competition … I opted for local, since Tramore is only 10km from Waterford City it seemed like a good fit. The photo was taken in late May 2015 on a new looped walkway located a few minutes walk from the beach. Using a 70-300mm lens I […]

03 Oct 2015
Irish Balloon Championships 2015 - Waterford Airport

Irish Balloon Championships 2015

The Irish Balloon Championships visited Waterford once again and this year I was hoping to get a few more shots than last year. The event approached with the sad news that there was a possibility that the Discover Waterford hot air balloon flown with pride by Joe Daly would have it’s last outing in our skies due to a lack of funding from our local council. The Discover Waterford hot air balloon has been a common sight across Waterford and South […]

18 May 2015
Tramore and the Metal man

Tramore and the Metal Man

There is a brand new looped walk behind the old Tramore racecourse near the back strand. It was from here on a sunny April day I decided to use a Zoom lens to compress the scene and focus on the metal man with some passers by also in shot. The lighting was very nice and with some polarisation and a small amount of extra vibrance added to the shot I ended with the final result above.

02 Feb 2015
Hong Kong by Night from the Peak, Photo of Hong Kong, Hong Kong Night, Skyscrapers, Photo of Hong Kong, by Night, Night Photo of Hong Kong

Hong Kong by Night from the Peak

This photo was taken from the summit of The Peak in Hong Kong. This area is certainly worth the admission fee, with an incredible view. However, due to the cityscape, it is certainly a popular area. If you are intending taking a few shots from this area, I would certainly recommend bringing a monopod or if you can get away with it a tripod. I was lucky to get a spot to take the shot above before a few eager […]

25 Nov 2014
Dunbrody Famine Ship just after Sunset, New Ross, Co. Wexford, ireland

The Dunbrody, New Ross, Co. Wexford

Last Saturday I noticed that the sky was lining up to create a nice sunset. I jumped in the car and decided to look for a new spot to take some shots. I hadn’t been to New Ross on a photo shoot and opted to go there. On arrival in New Ross it was about 5 minutes to Sunset and already the sky was ablaze with colour; Reds, oranges and blues. Unfortunately due to not being able to get a […]

10 Nov 2014
Moon Rise over Tramore, Co. Waterford

Moon Rise over Tramore, Co. Waterford

I remember when I was young seeing the moon rise between two houses and it seemed to be massive. It turns out that the closer the moon is to the horizon it can see bigger than it was. Combine that with using a telephoto lens which compresses the scene and you can give some extra bang your moon shots. I knew the moon was full on the night I was heading for a walk. It was around 5:30pm and I […]

08 Oct 2014
Waterford City by Night taken from Ardree Hotel Waterford in 2005 winner of Imagine Arts Festival Photo Competition

Waterford by Night – Blast from the Past

I was recently going through some photos and I found a shot taken from the now closed Ardree Hotel in 2005, Waterford by Night. It was my first long exposure and without a tripod I managed to take this 4 second exposure with a Fuji S7000. In 2008 I entered the Imagine Arts Festival Photography competition and won with the above photo. We have a beautiful city and it is great to see it from such a location – such […]

26 Sep 2014
Irish Hot Air Ballooning Championships : Nightglow Waterford 1

Nightglow Waterford : September 26th 2014

As part of the Irish Hot Air Ballooning Championships 2014, several hot air balloons set up on the banks of the River Suir, on the North Wharf, Waterford on 26th September 2014. Originally planned for Tuesday 23rd the postponed event was worth waiting for. Around 9:05pm the hot air balloons were inflated and in sequence with music they had the flames shooting into the night sky, reflecting into the river. Below are 3 quick edits of the evening. Due to […]

26 Sep 2014
Hong Kong iPhone Photo

iPhoneography Vs DSLR Photography

The iPhone over the past few years has revolutionised the ability to shoot, edit and share your photographs by just using one device. Personally I prefer using a DSLR but with the iPhone you get to experiment with panoramic styles, filters, but for me its how accessible it is. By no means will the current smartphone cameras ever match the aperture / shutterspeed / quality of a good DLSR. However  it does mean you can use the iPhone for recce […]

15 Sep 2014
View from top of Mount Maunganaiu

The view from Mount Maunganaui

In the previous post, with the cloud shaped like a fish, I mentioned Mount Maunganaui. In this post I show you what it looked like from the top of this mountain. It is only just over 760ft high but it looks impressive. The walk up to the top is not for the faint hearted, even in July, which is New Zealand’s winter the temperature was around 21C and you would certainly need some water before making the walk up. We […]

11 Sep 2014
When you see it - fish or whale cloud in the sky - Mount Maunganui

When you see it …

In an area of New Zealand called the Bay of Plenty, near Tauranga there is a town called Mount Maunganui.  Mount Maunganui is also the name of the huge extinct volcanic cone, 761 ft in height,  that somewhat dominates the town and is locally known simply as ‘The Mount’. We were just about to set out on a walk up the mountain when I took a photo of what I thought was a nice beach scene, as the huge waves […]

08 Sep 2014
Kingfisher type photo New Zealand - Bird Photo

Kingfisher type bird in New Zealand

On my recent trip to New Zealand we were in a town called Whakatane on the North Island. There is a very enjoyable river walk which brings you from the town, along the river, and back. Along the way you see many wading birds, sea gulls and many other birds. One of the birds I spotted on a branch was the one pictured below. In order not to disturb it, I quietly attached the 70-300mm zoom lens as it was […]

06 Sep 2014
Nelson Lakes, New Zealand with Girl on Pier

By the Waters Edge, New Zealand

Continuing from my previous post from Nelson Lakes, New Zealand, this shot is from the first of the lakes which we visited. The area has a wonderful variety of light and shade and in the evening sun I took this shot while a girl walked out onto the pier. Adding people to a shot really enhances any photo as long as it is done in the right way. I used a polarizing filter to get as much colour and reflection […]

02 Sep 2014
New Zealand Reflective Lake Nelson Lakes

New Zealand – Land of Reflections

New Zealand is a beautiful country and this year was my 3rd visit in 4 years. One of the features of New Zealand, especially the south island, is the number of reflective lakes which can be found. The ones I remember most were at Fox Glacier and also on the way to Milford Sound. This time we headed north from Christchurch to a place called Nelson and the Nelson Lakes National Park. The picture below was taken early in the […]

10 Aug 2014
August 10th Supermoon, Supermoon Photo

Supermoon August 10th

I didn’t get out with the camera in time to see the Supermoon rise on August 10th (once source quoted 10:48 as being the moon rise time) . By the time I released it was earlier I decided to wait until the moon was thigh enough in the sky to get a clear shot at it. I decided to use the Canon 70-300 to get in close and used ISO 200 so not to add too much noise. The Shutter […]

16 Jul 2014
Supermoon shot with the Canon 70-300

SuperMoon Shot with New 70-300 Lens

My Canon 70-300 lens got a battering over the past few years (I had it over 6 years) so I invested in a brand new 70-300. The latest version of this zoom lens has IS and 2 auto-focus modes. The zoom is incredible and I have taken some great shots of aircraft at 36,000ft, on which you can see the features of the wings and in one case clearly read the word Emirates on the underside of the A380. This […]

01 Jul 2014
Light on Tree - Woodland Walk and nice light on tree

Woodland Evening Light

I always like unusual lighting conditions and on a recent woodland walk I noticed a tree which was being lit in spots thanks to the overhead canopy and surrounding trees filtering the light. This resulted in only a section of the tree being lit and thus created an effect which I very much liked. The shot is shown below. This shot was taken on 22nd June at 7pm so there was a lot of light around and sunset was around […]

27 Jun 2014
St. Marys Church / Cathedral in Sun Rays, Kilkenny

St. Mary’s Cathedral Kilkenny

On a recent walk in Kilkenny as the evening was closing in, the rays of the sun and the silhouette of St. Mary’s Cathedral in Kilkenny drew my attention. Using spot metering I was able to place the cathedral so that it was darker than the background and thus also showing the lighting and texture of the clouds. I would have liked to use my ND Grad filters but on a casual walk I had no filter holders with me, just […]

25 Jun 2014
Robin Red Breast on a Tree Stump

Robin on Tree Stump

I was testing my new Canon 70-300 lens and spotted this Robin Red Breast standing in a patch of sunlight on a tree stump. I took 2 shots, in the first you couldn’t see his head but this was the second. I was very happy with the shot as the feather lines and detail were very clearly visible plus I like the fact that the background, which was out of sunlight, is very dim and therefore is not too distracting. […]

10 Jun 2014
Naas Swan, Swans Naas

Beauty of Swans

During a recent visit to Naas I went for a walk around the lakes near the hospital, and although I lived in Naas for some time, this is an area I had never visited. The swans had their young nearby, still fluffy and probably only a few weeks old. There was also some activity amongst the male swans, defending their patch perhaps. Some swan fights were very interesting to watch. The benefit of carrying your camera every where you go […]

12 Apr 2014
Bee on Flower full of Pollen

Spring Bee Photoshoot

With Spring eventually arriving I was taking some photos of Spring flowers and noticed a bee full of pollen and tried to get some snaps with the 24-105mm lens. Not a Macro lens but by getting in close and cropping later you can make the photo look closer than you actually were. I was also lucky enough to capture the bee taking off from flower to flower. I had anticipated that the bee would fly between flowers and had the […]

01 Apr 2014
Hook Head, Co. Wexford - Colour Photo

Hook Head, Co .Wexford

On a brief trip to Hook Head, the oldest intact operational light house in the world, I decided to try out some ND grad filters. It was a sunny day so the ND grad filters would have controlled the light in areas of the photo which are too bright, such as the sky and clouds. I also had an extra ND filter, an ND-3 to try slow the water but in the strong sun and with no tripod (as it […]

12 Mar 2014
N25 Bridge Waterford

Waterford N25 Bridge at Night

The last time I visited the River Suir for a view of the N25 Bypass Bridge, also known as the Cat Flap to locals, I had a different camera and a different lens. Now armed with a Canon 7D and a 24-105 L Lens I was attempting a re-shoot. Shot just after the blue hour ended I had to change the White Balance to Tungsten to combat the yellow street lights from Waterford city in the background. The photo was […]

02 Mar 2014
Ladybird on a leaf

Ladybird out for a Walk

This photo of a ladybird (or ladybug in the USA) I just liked because of the simplicity – one small ladybird in an vast green area. I also liked the texture of the grass stem which the lady bird is walking over. I deliberately used a low aperture so as to blur the background and focus more on the subject, which is obviously the ladybird. Also the fact that everything is green and the only thing not green is the […]

24 Feb 2014
Arch, Paris, Parisenne Archways, Arch, parisenne, Paris, Louvre

Parisenne Archways

On a visit to Paris you can be guaranteed of having amazing subjects to photograph. The people, the architecture, the landmarks, night photography and much more. On one such visit, in the courtyard behind the Louvre Museum, I spotted an archway leading to a bridge and on into the distance. I liked the lines it offered and the people in the distance. The contrast from dark into light was also a nice feature of the shot – as well as […]

10 Feb 2014
Ardmore Round Tower

Ardmore Round Tower and Cliff Walk

I visited Ardmore in late January in the middle of 2 forecast storms, on the one day I took the camera out, luckily I had a perfect day for taking photos. Ardmore Co. Waterford is a great location for a photo walk, combining beaches, cliff walks and inland areas as well as the history and splendour of the stunning round tower. I just decided to share 2 photos from this walk around Ardmore, the first is of the Round Tower […]

05 Feb 2014
Milford Sound - Touching Up Old Photos, Revisiting Old Photos

Revisiting old photos

I noticed that I had a lot of photos from 2010/2011 which I had backed up but very few were every touched up or had much editing done on them. There were 2 reasons for this; firstly I didn’t have very good editing software back then and secondly when tools I did have, were limited in what they could do. Now with better software and better understanding of what can be done, old photos can be re-edited and re-touched. Therefore […]

22 Jan 2014
Stonehenge, Wiltshire - iPhone Photo, iPhone Photography

10 Tips to Improve your Photography

As a photographer do you ever find yourself getting stuck in a rut? Have you fallen into the HDR hole, are you always shooting in Auto mode or are you always shooting the same subjects at the same time of day? We all work hard at improving our photography and here are 10 tips you can try from today to improve your photography skills. You may already be doing these, so if you are, well done !… If not, then […]

12 Jan 2014
Heart Shaped Bokeh - Creating Custom Bokeh, Aperture Shapes - Making Heart Shaped Custom Bokeh

How to Create a Custom Bokeh

The first thing you may be asking is what the hell does Bokeh mean? The word ‘Bokeh’ comes from the Japanese word Bokashi which means ‘to blur’. The use of the word Bokeh in photography terms can mean areas of a photo which are not in focus due to being beyond the focal point – (this does not mean that a blurry, out of focus, poorly shot photo can be described as having nice bokeh). Creating the Custom Bokeh This […]

07 Jan 2014
Fox on the Avenue, my first Fox photo - but its not Megan Fox !

2013 – My Year in Photo Blogging

WordPress via the Jetpack plugin publish reports on your blogs which are very interesting.  If you have a WordPress blog and you have not yet installed Jetpack then you really should as there are some great features including the ‘Publicize’ feature where you can auto-update your Facebook, Twitter and Google+ accounts with your posts. My 2013 Report One of the most interesting stats from my 2013 year in photo blogging was that I had about 10,000 views on the Photo […]

02 Jan 2014
Astrophotography Timelapse, timelapse of Stars

First Astrophotography Timelapse

I had seen timelapse videos showing the stars in the night sky moving, showing the rotation of the earth, sometimes even showing the milky way as it traverses the night sky. Having done some research I found out that you need a digital shutter timer or intervalometer. I found one on Amazon for under €30 and the first attempt is shown below. I used ISO 2000, a 20 second shutter speed at f/4 using a Tamron 10-24 wide angle lens […]

20 Oct 2013
The Golden Hour Photography, Morning, Swans on Lake during Golden Hour Photo

Swans on the Lake Revisited – Morris Oil Calendar Final 12

Back in March I posted a photo called “Swans on the Lake”. I recently submitted this to the Morris Oil calendar competition and it has been now shortlisted in the final 12. I am now hoping that you have a few minutes to vote for this picture by clicking the image below and on Facebook simply LIKE the photo. There are many other fine photos in the Calendar’s Final 12 but hopefully this photo will come in Top 3. UPDATE […]

23 Sep 2013
Flightfest - Flightfest - Photos from Flightfest Dublin 2013, Photos of Aircraft from Flightfest Dublin, Flightfest pictures, pictures from Flightfest 2013

Flightfest Air Show, Dublin 2013

On Sunday 15th September Flightfest in Dublin drew crowds of up to 150,000 who lined the streets from Capel Street bridge to the Point Depot to watch a once-in- a-lifetime, international fly past with over 30 aircraft flying at about 800ft. FlightFest was organised as part of ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’ and included aircraft such as Boeing 737, B767, ATR 72, Embraer 195, and Airbus 320, 321, 330, A340 and the new Airbus A380. Also the Irish Air Corps and […]

09 Sep 2013
Longleat Safari Tiger Zoom Lend Photo of Tiger

How to ensure a well exposed photo using the exposure triangle

It’s often a problem when using a zoom lens, you zoom in and take the shot and you end up with a shot that’s not 100% sharp. This is because you were so far zoomed in that the camera was not steady enough to capture a sharp shot. A fraction of movement when zoomed in results in a large variation in the field of view which causes the unsharp shot. Even a camera on a tripod can result in an […]

01 Sep 2013
Dog Surfing Tramore

Tramore Dog Surfing – Yes, Dog Surfing!

On Sunday September 1st, Tramore saw a spectacle which I had not seen in Ireland before, Dog Surfing…. Yes, surfing for Dogs. Some of the dogs didn’t seem to like the idea and once on the surf boards decided to abandon ship and swim to shore, while others took to it like a duck dog to water. Crowds had come to Tramore for this well advertising dog surfing event and cheered as each dog made their way to shore on […]

26 Aug 2013
Tramore Fireworks 2013, Fireworks, in Tramore, Amusement Fireworks Tramore 2013

Tramore Amusements Monster Firework Display 2013

On Sunday 25th August there was a Monster Fireworks display in Tramore, Co. Waterford. I decided to try and get a few shots having not brought the camera to the Spraoi fireworks display. In this post I outline the technique used I used in taking photos of fireworks and also some photos of the Tramore Amusements Monster Firework Display 2013. Firework Photos – Technique For those interested in how I took these fireworks photos, the settings I used were as […]

20 Aug 2013
Bees landing on Flowers - Summer Bees and Summer Flowers

Summer Flower and Bees – An Exercise in Patience

Summer is a great time to take photographs of flowers, wildlife, butterflies and other insects (if that’s something which interests you) and I noticed that there was a lot of activity among a set of red flowers. I decided to try to get the bees approaching the flowers just before they landed. Using the Canon 24-105 L lens I set up shop about 2 feet off the ground shooting upwards towards the sky in order to get plenty of blue […]

13 Aug 2013
Peresid Meteor Shower - How to photograph the peresid / persid meteor shower

Photographing the Perseids meteor shower – My First Attempt

This is my first appempt at taking photos of The Perseid Meteor Shower. The Perseids is a prolific meteor shower associated with the fragments from comet Swift-Tuttle and are called “The Perseids” because the point from which they originate, lies in the constellation of Perseus. Having checked the StarWalk app on the iPhone it seemed that the Perseids would be in the North East of the sky at about 11pm and the International Space Station would bass at 11:03pm. I chose […]

16 Jul 2013
Tasty Food Photography - How to Take food photography

More Food Photography this time with Off Camera Flash

I had the opportunity to do some more food photography at Mount Juliet with the amazing chefs at the 3AA Rosette Lady Helen restaurant. The last time I did food photography I didn’t have the facility to take my flash off-camera; however since then, I have purchased a set of flash triggers to remotely fire the 430 EXII which is much more beneficial to the quality and lighting of the final image. The location I chose was the table nearest […]

30 Jan 2013
The Golden Hour Photography, Morning, Swans on Lake during Golden Hour Photo

Morning Photography – Swans on the Lake

Morning can be a particularly good time to take great photos. More and more I am refraining from taking photos between 11am and 4pm as the colours are just washed out by the strong overhead sun (unless of course the sun is not an issue and you have some interesting clouds or sky to enjoy.) Mornings where the weather is very cold can often produce very high clouds which are then lit by the rising sun during what is known […]

16 Jan 2013
My Camera - Canon D450

10 things to Remember before or during your Photography shoot

This is my 6th year using a DSLR and my 12th year of using a digital camera and over this time I have learned a few photography lessons … some, the hard way!! This post has 10 things to remember before you start taking photos, either on a photo shoot or before you set out. Is your camera lens clean? May sound simple but the amount of times I have taken a shot only to later spot a water mark […]

10 Jan 2013
ND filters long exposure beach sunset

Experimenting with ND Filters and Long Exposures

Having recently purchased some ND filters I had being longing to try them out for quite some time. I decided to try the seascape at sunset style with the waves crashing across the rocks. The waves become misty and it looks quite nice but I had never tried this before. I am going to outline below how I used the ND Filters, ND Grad Filters and Long Exposures for capturing the waves and rocks. The time was about 5 minutes […]

06 Jan 2013

3 Photography Myths Discussed

With the reduction in price of DSLR cameras, may people have DSLR cameras, have the interest in photography but have ideas or “a little knowledge” and as a result photography myths are created. This blog post discusses 3 of these photography myths. 1) My Camera is the Problem – I need to upgrade “I would be able to take much better photos if I had a better camera.” No, it won’t … Better equipment does not produce better photographs by […]

01 Jan 2013
Photography Year in Review, Best Photos of 2012, Best Photo Blog Posts - Shane McDonald Photography Blog Review of Photos in 2012

2012 Photography Year in Review

With 2012 now over, I am having a look back at the photoblog, my photos during 2012, the blog traffic and what photography blog posts were the most popular during 2012. I got the WordPress email which had some very interesting stats. I have combined this report with some from Google Analytics and the results are below. My Year in Review In comparison with 2011, 2012 was a very successful year. At the start of 2012 I decided to try […]

28 Dec 2012
Montreal Street Scene, Evening photo of street in Montreal

Montreal, Evening Street Scene

I thought I had finished posting photos of Canada when I found this one. I thought that the photo had potential so after a bit of editing I ended up with a version I was happy with. The shot itself was one which I took while walking past this area. Set the camera up on a high ISO (400 or 800 as far as I recall) so that I could get a bit of movement at 1/30s … while all […]

24 Dec 2012
Fog on the Paddocks before Sunrise

Winter Scenes and Frosty Mornings

Frosty mornings bring with it some lovely scenes which are great to photograph. Normally you will get crisp mornings, sometimes fog and you might also get an impressive sunrise, made even more impressive if there are some nice clouds in the sky at the time. If you are taking photos of frosty or cold mornings, try to take the photos before the sun gets too high in the sky, this is called the Golden Hour, as opposed to the Blue […]

12 Dec 2012
View of Vieux-Québec (Old Quebec) Photo

View of Vieux-Québec (Old Quebec)

Old Quebec is a very picturesque area with much to see and on a good day, has plenty to keep a photographer busy. I liked the sky in this, early in the day, before 10am so the sun wasn’t too high. The original is a lot wider than this but I heavily cropped the image to remove a bus queue on the left and a barrier on the right, focusing on the subject and using the nice bush on the […]

05 Dec 2012
Quebec by Night

Quebec Boardwalk by Night

One of the main features of Old Quebec is The Château Frontenac and the vast boardwalk which sits in front of it. The boardwalk is a very busy thoroughfare during the day and especially at night. The dominant Château Frontenac is a now a luxury hotel in Vieux–Québec or Old Quebec which is currently operated by Fairmont Hotels as Le Château Frontenac. Château Frontenac was built on the site previously occupied by the Chateau Haldimand, residence of the British colonial […]

20 Nov 2012
Chinese Gardens in Montreal Botanical Gardens

Chinese Gardens in Montreal Botanical Gardens

If you are in Montreal you must visit the Montreal Botanical Gardens. Highlight of these amazing gardens was the Chinese gardens and buildings. The vivid colours were striking with Greens and the reds from the buildings. In order not to white out the colours with the intense sun I found some shade and this allowed more of the colour and detail to be preserved. I like the shot below because of the framing thanks to the trees and shrubs. The […]

07 Nov 2012
Notre-Dame Basilica, place d'armes, Montreal, Canada - Photo of Notre-Dame Basilica, place d'armes, Montreal

Notre-Dame Basilica, Place d’Armes, Montreal

The Notre-Dame Basilica, is located in Place d’Armes, Montreal, opposite where the photo of the Maisonneuve Monument was taken. Again the area was swarming with tourists so I opted for a long exposure. The shot was taken with the same wide angle Tamron 10-24mm lens. The result, Notre-Dame Basilica, is shown below. The photo is nice but there are certain things I would do differently. I think the exposure is a bit off on the highlights within the church spires […]

02 Nov 2012
Place d'Armes Maisonneuve Monument, Old Montreal, Montreal, Canada - Place D'Armes photo, Montreal

Place d’Armes Maisonneuve Monument,Montreal

This shot is an evening shot of The Maisonneuve Monument in Old Montreal which, built in 1895 at Place d’Armes in Montreal in memory of Paul Chomedey de Maisonneuve, founder of Montreal. The Maisonneuve Monument is in a busy square and with many people about I opted for a long exposure, therefore any people walking by would not appear or would appear less vividly than the subject of the photo. The photo was also taken during what is known as […]

23 Oct 2012
Marché Bonsecours Montreal, Bonsecours Market Montreal Photo 2

Marché Bonsecours Montreal – A Second Version

I added a photo of Marché Bonsecours Montreal as part of my Project52 earlier this week but I have found an alternate version which might be of interest. I was taken earlier in the evening and from a slightly different angle. The sky is less red and it is easier to see the detail in the roof of Bonsecours Market and environs. I still used the same setup, the wide angle lens, low tripod, cable release but I was not […]

22 Oct 2012
Montreal Sunset

Marché Bonsecours Montreal Sunset – 33/Project52

Of all the photos of Montreal I think this turned out the best. It is a photo of Marché Bonsecours Montreal at Sunset. Near sunset I could see that the sky would be quite interesting. I also had an ND9 and a ND Grad filter in my camera bag and decided to use these to accentuate the sky. The mini-tripod was used – just about 1 foot in height from the ground, giving a different aspect on the view. I […]

20 Oct 2012
Montreal Street View

Montreal Street View – 32/Project52

Street Photography is something I have being trying to do some more of recently and this next shot is a photo from Montreal which I really like because of the lighting and the way the sun hits the buildings. The sun was setting and the sky still had a bit of interest. There were also some interesting buildings in the shot, the old impressive building with the turret, the Hotel Nelson with the red brick and the building in the […]

18 Oct 2012
Montreal Harbour at Sunset 2

Montreal Harbour at Sunset – 31/Project 52

The next few project 52 photos will be of Canada. This weeks one was taken on a river cruise in Montreal Harbour. On a river cruise the sky was quite nice and gave the opportunity to capture Montreal cityscape from the river cruise launch. The boats capstan had great reflection as did the water. The shoot itself, this shot of Montreal was on a boat, therefore a tripod was not an option. So it was handheld with the bobbing of […]

26 Sep 2012
Niagara Falls at Night

Niagara Falls at Night – 30/Project52

Working without a tripod is always recommended, working without a tripod in low light is vital … how about doing a long exposure without a tripod? The following image was taken at Niagara Falls about 30 minutes after sunset and it was a 20 second long exposure of Niagara Falls at Night. Thanks to a table, 2 phone directories and a small box to stabalise under the lens (so that the lens didn’t drop and face downwards). I focused manually, […]

19 Sep 2012
Ottawa, Canada Timelapse Video - Video fo Timelapse from Ottawa Canada

Timelapse of Ottawa, Canada

Just another time-lapse experiment taken in Ottawa. The footage was taken on the iPhone from the Fairmont Château Laurier looking down towards Parliament hill. The footage compresses about 1 hour 10 minutes into the under 60 second clip.  I was hoping to capture the early morning march and parade to Parliament Hill but it did not work out.

18 Sep 2012
CN Tower Toronto dominates the Toronto Skyline

Photos from Toronto, Canada

I have being working through some photos from Canada and I’m still on the Toronto area as I work through over 1,000 photos which I took while there. Toronto is a very nice city with lots to do in and around the city. I have put together some photos from the area which I like and over the next few weeks will add more to the blog from Canada. The CN Tower dominates the skyline of Toronto and you can […]

11 Sep 2012
Niagara Falls Timelapse - Timelapse of Niagara Falls Video

Niagara Falls Timelapse

This is just a short timelapse of Niagara Falls taken from the Sheraton on the Falls looking towards the American Falls as evening set in. I like the way the lights behind Niagara Falls turns on later in the video. Its only 20 seconds but I thought it was a nice little video which was shot on the iPhone. Niagara Falls Timelapse Video Location :

10 Sep 2012
Niagara Falls, ON, Canada - Panoramic View of Niagara Falls Canada

Niagara Falls : 29/Project 52

I haven’t updated the Project 52 in a while and will have a few catch-up posts this week in relation to it. This weeks project 52 post is of Niagara Falls, A Panoramic View with the Maid of the Mist. Luckily it was a good day with good sunshine which always helps when shooting water, adds colour and stops it looking grey. Blue skies also lend a nice contrast and introduce good colour. I shot this from the The Journey […]

22 Aug 2012
Waterford Quays by Night - Long Exposure, Waterford, Ireland

Making the Most of the Blue Hour in Waterford

Tonight I decided to put the camera in the car and drive around and see what presented itself. Around 9pm the darkness was starting to become apparent and I chanced checking what time the International Space Station would be heading over Waterford. Thanks to the Twisst service on Twitter 21:10pm was listed and I made my way to the Quay. The light in the sky was still present and as it passed over Barronstrand Street the ISS was a bit […]

20 Aug 2012
Stavros S Niarchos at Hook Head and Dunmore East Waterford - Tall Ships

Tall Ship Stavros S Niarchos passing Hook Head

This post and this photo could not have happened without the power of Twitter. Sunday evening I was browsing the Twitter feed on my @shanesphoto feed and I noticed a few tweets about the Stavros S Niarchos which was berthed in Waterford over the weekend. One of these mentioned that the Tall Ship Stavros S Niarchos would be passing through Dunmore East around 9pm. That was enough, camera bag into the car and off to Dunmore East. Patiently awaiting the […]

14 Aug 2012
Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, ON, Canada - ROM, Toronto

Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, Canada – 28/Project 52

I haven’t been updating the project52 recently as I was away in Canada and during the trip took a few snaps which will appear here on the blog and also on the Flickr Stream. Delighted to have some good weather to take photos, the typical Irish man in me would comment that it was a bit too hot! Hitting 37 degrees some days, carrying a camera bag with 4 lenses and mini tripod seemed to be lunacy. Thankfully, I rejected […]

18 Jul 2012
Kilkenny Castle Grounds and Kilkenny Castle Rose Gardens, Kilkenny, Ireland

Kilkenny Castle Evening Shot – 27/Project 52

I didn’t take many photos in recent weeks, again the weather wasn’t great, and I just didn’t get time to take the camera out with me as much as I would have liked … seems to be a common complaint but something I hope to work on in the coming weeks as I shoot in Canada. Spots like Totonto, Niagara Falls, Montreal and Quebec should give me some good shots to work on. With the addition of my new 24-105 […]

08 Jul 2012
Chicks in Dunmore East - Seagull Chicks Feeding 2

Chicks and their Mom – Seagull Chicks in Dunmore East : 26/Project 52

Halfway through the Project 52 challenge and it has been very hard these past few weeks to get any decent shoots in the evenings – the weather this year has been deplorable and this week was no exception. I nearly didn’t bring the camera on this day but I spotted some chicks in the cliff face and their seagull mom feeding them. The location was a nice little cove called Badger Cove (even though i think I tweeted Beaver cove […]

05 Jul 2012
Waterford N25 Suspension Bridget with the Moon shot through the Suspension Cables of the Toll Bridge

Moon through the Bridge Wires – 25/Project 52

On the way home from Kilkenny one evening I spotted the full moon high in the sky, and as I approached the new N25 toll bridge at Waterford I wondered if the 2 would be in the same shot. I decided to go down as far as the old Waterford – Carrick road, now a dead end, and shoot the bridge from there. And as I suspected the 2 were ideally placed to take in the same shot. I was […]

25 Jun 2012
London Dove in Your Face - Pigeon, Dove, Fly

London Dove In Your Face – 24/Project52

I went for a walk in St. James park near Buckingham Palace in London and found that the pigeons were very tame, in fact, when I held my had out, 2 of them landed on my arm. While I was doing this I thought I could capture some of the avian flapping action that was going on all around me. I upped the shutter speed to 1/1000s and locked the focus. 4 or 5 shots later I had the shot […]

20 Jun 2012
Sunset at Waterford New N25 Bridge, N25 Bypass at Sunset in Waterford

Sunset in Waterford : 23/Project52

Having got some ND filters, I had being playing around with evening light and captured this shot looking towards the new N25 toll bridge in Waterford as the sunset. I had used an ND4 and a ND grad filter. The lighting was probably a bit too harsh to do a long exposure. I used a tripod, timed shutter, manual focus and IS was turned off (as IS can cause blurry photos when on a tripod). The resultant shot of sunset […]

15 Jun 2012
The Vicar of Dibley 1- Church used in the Vicar of Dibley

The Vicar of Dibley : 22/Project 52

This weeks post has 3 photos you might recognize – it’s the location used in the filming of the hit BBC show, “The Vicar of Dibley”. The location is in the middle of nowhere, only for SatNav we would never had found the right roads to take, some only the sixth of one car. It is located about 30 minutes drive south of Oxford. The town in very small, has 1 pub and some residential houses which were all decorated with […]

06 Jun 2012
Food Photography, taking pictures of food, how to take food photos, how to photograph food...

Food Photography : 21/Project 52

Almost half way through the project 52 and this post is all about food and fine dining. I recently did some food photography for the Lady Helen Restaurant at Mount Juliet Country Estate. Often photography is a challenge because the subject may be not that aesthetically pleasing and you are trying to do your best with what’s put in front of you – in this case I had very little work to do as the presentation of the food was […]

29 May 2012
Low Rainbow - iPhone Photography Challenge

iPhoto7 – iPhone Photography Challenge : 20/Project52

I played around with the idea of using the camera which is with me 100% of the time, my trusty iPhone4S which has a great 8Mb pixel camera. One photo per day for 5 to 7 days seemed like an easy challenge but I was trying to create quality photos, or different photos than just a photo of a bird or a nice scene. All the photos could only use apps native to the iPhone to edit or tweak the […]

14 May 2012
Woodstown Beach, Still Life / Sunset as Part of Project52 - Woodstown Beach, Co. Waterford, Ireland.

Woodstown Beach, Co. Waterford – Sunset : 19/Project52

Eventually got the camera out and with some nice weather over the weekend I saw this during a walk on Woodstown beach as the sun was setting. I liked the reflection of the sun on the wet sand. The tide had made the sand quite reflective and I just liked the overall effect. Not the best shot in the world but a relaxing view more than anything. I used the Canon 18-55 kit lens for a change with a polarising […]

09 May 2012
Puppy, Pet Photography, Pet, Photography, Pets, Photographing Pets

Pet Photography : 18/Project52

This week I tried my hand at Pet Photography with a new puppy, Pippa, a willing and participant miniature yorkie was a great subject and reacted very well whenever the motor in the auto-focus was whirring. The light was fairly low and as soon as the AF was triggered puppy’s head would pop up and look into or towards the camera. The result below was one of many great shots, so I couldn’t resist putting up this picture as this […]

01 May 2012
Ass Lying Down - Ass Photo, Photo of an Ass on the Ground with a funny expression on his face : Ass Face Smile

Donkey having a Scratch – 17/Project52

I decided to have some fun with this weeks Project 52 photo (by the time I’m uploading it, it’s actually the one for last week). Having visited the donkey sanctuary in Cork, I had a few ass photos 🙂 ; This particular donkey decided to lie down and was enjoying a scratch on the ground. As you can see from the expression on the donkeys face its seems to be a satisfying experience. The past few photos of the week […]

23 Apr 2012
Kilfarrasy Waterford

As the Tide Rushes In – Kilfarrasy, Co. Waterford – 16/Project52

I have been trying to get out to the beach late in the evening for a long time and eventually last night I did, however I didn’t have my full compliment of filters so I made the job a bit tougher than normal. I had been scouting Hook Head, Kilfarrasy and Annestown Beach as possible locations for a sunset long exposure shoot. I was also hoping to capture the space station as it passed overhead (supposed to be 20:46pm but […]

19 Apr 2012
Photo of Waterford City - Picture of Waterford City in Early Morning as Sun Comes Up

Waterford Photo on 3e Weather Forecast

One of my photos, “Sunrise over Waterford City” will be shown on the 3e weather forecast on Friday 20th April at 6:28pm. The photo which I took from the bridge in Waterford is shown below. It is part of the LoveWaterford week on the 3e Weather forecast. A big thanks to everyone who, via my Facebook page, helped to secure the photos spot on the 3e forecast. Thank You!!

16 Apr 2012
Last of the Spring Flowers, Blue, Spring, Flowers

Last of the Spring Flowers : 15/Project 52

All this week I had made multiple attempts at taking a nice shot of a field of rapeseed against quite a vivid skyline, but every time I tried something in the shot just wasn’t working. In the end I decided to try something on a smaller scale, that was the last of the spring flowers. I liked the contrast of the purple against the green and the light behaved itself during a week when the weather was not the best, […]

03 Apr 2012
Kinsale, Co. Cork, Ireland - Photo of Kinsale from Pier Road, Kinsale, Co. Cork, Ireland

Kinsale, Co. Cork – 14/Project 52

As it happened I ended up back in Cork for the second week running, having been in Cobh last week, this week I was near Cork Airport. So I decided to scout around for some locations, and thanks to a tip off from Twitter via my @shanesphoto account, I headed to Kinsale and later to Old Head of Kinsale (one of which is up on Flickr). I was 100% positive that I had been to Kinsale when I was younger […]

31 Mar 2012
Cobh, Co. Cork, Ireland - Last place the Titanic stopped on its maiden voyage.

Cobh, Co. Cork : 13/Project 52

With the 100 Anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic approaching in April 2012, I decided to post this photo which I took this week during an all too brief visit to Cobh, Co. Cork … (I may also put some more photos of Cobh online either on the blog or on Flickr in the coming weeks.) The one thing about Cobh (apart from all the Titanic memorabilia) which I noticed, is that it is a very nice town, with […]

26 Mar 2012
Meerkat - Compare my Meerkat - Fota Wildlife Park Meerkat or Meercat - Cute photo

Compare My Meerkat – 12/Project 52

Are you looking for cheap car inshooooraance? If so, don’t ask this little furry guy as he has no idea what 3rd party fire and theft is. This is one of the Meerkat’s in Fota Wildlife Park near Cobh, in Co. Cork. The new compound for the Meerkats is just inside the gates so you can’t miss it and you get a good view of them as they perch on the look out. I was delighted at how sharp I […]

20 Mar 2012
Heron standing on weir in Cahir

Grey Heron at Cahir, Co. Tipperary : 11/Project 52

I came across this grey heron totally by accident in Cahir, Co. Tipperary ; it was standing in the weir just opposite Cahir Castle. Over a period of about 5 minutes this heron did not move, apart from tipping the flowing water with its’ right foot. I used the Canon 75-300 and upped the ISO to 400 so that I could get a nice crisp shot with the flowing water from the weir rushing by. The shot below is the […]

14 Mar 2012
A Nibbling Squirrel in the Trees - Squirrel eating a leaf.

Nibbling Squirrel – 10/Project 52

This photo for last weeks Project 52 entry, a bit late posting it but better late than never.  This weeks photo is yet another squirrel (a different one note) but this time its nibbling on some leaves and it was quite an interesting shoot. I saw the squirrel from a distance, its back to me, so I setup the camera, ISO 400 and a decent fast shutter speed as I was on the 75-300mm lens once again, so wanted to […]

08 Mar 2012
Arthurs Pass Road

Travel Photography : Some Photos from New Zealand

I have been going through some of my photos from New Zealand and doing a bit of cleaning up and Photoshop tweaking and I have uploaded some shots from New Zealand plus one from Singapore which I always liked but did a bit of fixing up of the image. I have placed some details about each image below the photos and I hope to put some more online via my Flickr account (see right of page for the Flickr Stream), […]

06 Mar 2012
The Moon - Almost Full Moon taken on a very cold spring evening.

Moonshot – 9/Project 52

Once again this past week the weather didn’t cooperate with my plans. ISS was in our skies last week and Monday and Tuesday it was too cloudy, Wednesday I didn’t have access to my camera, and Thursday – Sunday was not good for taking photos, with wind and rain. The best I did was a brief window on Sunday evening to get a shot of the almost full moon. I like it better when the moon is ‘almost’ full as […]

28 Feb 2012
Crows in the Tree Tops at Sunset

Crows in the Tree Tops at Sunset – 8/Project 52

Last Week I was out and about at or near sunset and I spotted a large number of crows in the trees. When I took the photo they were moving so fast, that even at 1/100 the birds were still showing up as moving blurred images. I like this shot because of the color in the sky (totally natural – no photoshop apart from a slight boost on Fill Light and Exposure +0.5). I didn’t really get a chance to […]

19 Feb 2012
Grey squirrel with a red head - squirrel photo - photo of a squirrel, a grey / gray squirrel

Grey Squirrel with a Red Head – 7/Project 52

In the grounds of Kilkenny Castle there are many areas where you can catch a glimpse of some amazing wildlife, from ducks, geese, swans, and many other types of small woodland birds to squirrels and even on a rare occasion badgers (according to the signs in the grounds of the Castle). On Friday I was luck enough to get a shot of a small grey squirrel, which I spotted in a tree. Luckily I had my 75-300mm lens on, so […]

12 Feb 2012
Train Hangs from Red Iron Bridge, Train Disaster Waterford just avoided by Photoshop - Fake Photo - Not Real !!!

Train Hangs from Red Iron Bridge, Waterford – 6/Project52

Today I took the camera down to Red Iron Bridge and as I did I was amazed to see a train move slowly down towards the gap in the Red Iron Bridge, I was sure it would stop well before the gap but it kept on coming, until …. Well, that would be an amazing news story and something to go into the photo-journalism portfolio, if indeed it were true ; but this alas is simply a slow photo week, […]

12 Feb 2012
Reginalds Tower Waterford, HDR Long Exposure with Star Trails

Some Project 52 Themes for 2012…

I decided to set some photography themes for the Project 52 which I am doing this year on shanemcdonald.me. I have not set dates against these as I want to be able to use them when ever I find a suitable subject or opportunity. There are 26 photography themes which allows me to use one ever second week or so (bearing in mind that we are almost 6 weeks into the year already). I will then link up the themes […]

07 Feb 2012
Lake Matheson at Fox Glacier Updated as HDR to recover details

Landscape Photography Competition with £1,000 in prizes

For all those who take landscape photography, you may be interested in this excellent Landscape Photography Contest which is being run by Lavenderworld.co.uk 1st prize is £500 (roughly €600) of photographic equipment with £300 for 2nd and £200 for 3rd place. The theme is Landscapes and entries are 1 digital photograph in colour or monochrome. To enter this photo contest visit http://www.lavenderworld.co.uk/blog/2012/01/31/the-lavenderworld-landscape-photography-competition About Lavender World Lavender is known for its medicinal properties as well as its beauty. Yorkshire Lavender was founded 13 years ago, […]

01 Feb 2012
Photo of Waterford City - Picture of Waterford City in Early Morning as Sun Comes Up

Waterford City in the Early Morning – 5/Project 52

This weeks Project 52 photo was quite easy, as it just happened that I had the camera & tripod with me (fairly common these days) and that I was near the bridge in Waterford as the sun was coming up. The sun was nestling behind the clouds which gave a nice ray / beam of light over the city. I ended up with a few different versions of this photo. The one below is the photo which I think represented […]

28 Jan 2012
Crescent Moon over River Suir, Carrick-On-Suir, Tipperary - B/W Moon shot

Crescent Moon over the River Suir – 4/Project 52

This week I decided to take advantage of the recent crescent moon in our skies since Monday. Using the 75-300 Canon lens, tripod & cable release I got a few good photos of the waxing crescent moon (at about 19%) and did some work with it from there. The photo above was taken in Carrick On Suir, Co. Tipperary, a 56 second exposure converted to black and white (actually monochrome with a little tint). I then implemented the moon on […]

19 Jan 2012
Hook Head Sunset / Sun Beams, Co. Wexford - Photo of the Week / Project 52

Hook Head, Co. Wexford, Sun Beams – 3/Project 52

A few days ago I took a photo at Hook Head which I liked. I hadn’t planned on using it for this weeks Project 52 photo, but having gone out tonight to take some night shots, I found that the clear skies had clouded over !! The weather for photography at the moment is dire (neither one thing or the other) … and its not great for the next few days, so this photo taken at Hook Head is as […]

15 Jan 2012
Sunrise over the River Nore, Kilkenny - 2/Project52

Sunrise over River Nore – 2/Project52

Second week of my Project52 was a bit more difficult with the weather not cooperating. Dull overcast days are tricky to shoot as the colours are not as vibrant as when the sun is peeking through the clouds. The photo below was taken about 20 minutes after sunrise last Tuesday morning, as the sun rose over the River Nore and broke through the clouds. The clouds were nice and I decided to take 5 different exposures in order to get […]

03 Jan 2012
Ardmore Cliff Walk, Ardmore Co. Waterford, Ireland - Project 52

Cliff Walk Ardmore, Co. Waterford – 1/Project52

The first entry on my 2012 Project 52 is a shot which was taken this weekend in Ardmore, Co. Waterford from the Cliff Walk. Set off at the Cliff House Hotel and the journey takes about 60-90 minutes depending on your pace, and you end up back at the round tower in Ardmore. This shot was taken mid-morning, luckily the sun was behind clouds so I was able to recover the detail from the sky. Its a great walk and […]

31 Dec 2011
2011 A Year in Photo Review - Shane McDonalds Photoblog 2011

2011 – My Photography Year in Review

With 2011 drawing to a close I have being trying to set aside some time to review some shots which I have being meaning to edit & improve in post-production etc. That plan didn’t work out but I’m going to try and take some time in Jan 2012 to do this. I also plan on starting the Project52 – which is one quality photo per week uploaded to the blog (the Project365 seems like overkill and I tried it once […]

11 Dec 2011

iPhone as a Camera – 7 Days of iPhone Photos

I decided to try push the iPhone 4S and its new camera to see what types of photo results I would or could get from the New iPhone Camera. The iPhone Camera on the 4S is miles ahead of the iPhone 3GS which I had upgraded from. Clearer images and much more dynamic range. I took 7 photos on the iPhone. All editing had to be done on camera, no external post processing (on pc or mac). Use of iPhone […]

26 Nov 2011
iPhone 4S photo - iPhone Photo Challenge

iPhone Photography – 7 Day iPhone Photo Challenge

I recently upgraded to the iPhone 4S from the iPhone 3GS. The most obvious improvement for me, as somebody who has an interest in photography, was the improved camera and screen. The iPhone 4S camera has 8 megapixels which is 60% more pixels than the camera on iPhone 4 and I’m sure more than the 3GS. Apple claim that it is “the best camera ever on a mobile phone” and that it “might be the only camera you’ll ever need”. […]

24 Nov 2011
November Fog - Fog in Kilkenny

Photo of the Week – Fog in Kilkenny

November is always a good time for getting photos with early morning mist and fog. This can create some lovely effects when the sun is rising as the light breaks through the fog and starts adding color to the landscape. I went out and about this week, early in the morning to capture some shots of the morning fog lingering. I managed to get a nice location with some sheep and some interesting trees. The trees in the distance give […]

14 Nov 2011
Playing with Fire on Annestown Beach - CCC

Playing with Fire – Photo of the Week

Recently we had a Carrick Camera Club shoot on Annestown Beach, and one of the shots involved lighting steel wool and doing some fast revolutions of the item while at the same time having the camera setup on long exposure. I was using Bulb, averaging 50 to 80 seconds and one of the results is shown below. Its a nice effect and more of these can be seen on my Flick channel. If you are doing this yourself, please be […]

09 Oct 2011
New Zealand Boardwalk - Blue Theme - Photo 1

Photo Theme – Blue

A recent club competition was a photo theme “BLUE’ – therefore any photo which could fall under the style or theme of blue. I had a selection problem on my hands as I had 2 main contenders. Photo selection is critical when submitting your work to a portfolio or photography competition. Sometimes your personal feelings of a photo can overweigh the ‘better’ photo. Therefore you may have 2 or 3 photos which you can’t decide between – the wrong choice […]

28 Sep 2011
Moon Setting behind Westminster House

Pictures of London – Fantastic Photo Location

London is a great place for any photographer with fantastic architecture, a river which enhances anything on the river bank, many weekly events to capture on film and the occasional unusual element or artistic installation. I have put a few photos from a recent trip to London with some of the shots I liked. Urban Fox at Waterloo Bridge, London   Moon Setting behind Westminster House   Westminster House from 300ft (on the London Eye)   London Street View from […]

22 Sep 2011
Fox on the Avenue, my first Fox photo - but its not Megan Fox !

My First Fox Photo – Photo of the Week

I have always been fascinated by how covert foxes can be, I once came across one in Manor Street in Waterford at 2am one night on the way home from a night out (no camera of course), but had not seen one up close since then. Having picked up a loan of 200mm Canon L Lens only the day before I was more than surprised to come across a fox in my path. I had barely enough time to reach […]

14 Sep 2011
Fantasy Waterfall Scene - Fantasy Scene, Water, Boat, Waterfall

Fantasy Waterfall Scene – Photo of the Week

I did a bit of digital editing of the St. Patricks Well photo from last week and thought it might be interesting to zoom in and use the small cascade as a huge fantasy waterfall effect. I added a tall-ship, some birds and vignetted the edges to enhance that section of the shot. I didn’t have much time to create the photo I was after, but 10 minutes in Photoshop gave the following effect.  

06 Sep 2011
St. Patricks Well, Clonmel, Co. Tipperary - Photo of the Week

St. Patricks Well, Co. Tipperary – Photo of the Week

This photo is one I took a few weeks ago but only got round to working on now. It is St. Patrick’s Well near Clonmel in Co. Tipperary. An area which I never knew about, but one which is very beautiful and a must see if you are into photography, as there are many places to get some nice shots. This photo (my photo of the week for this week) is of a small cascade or water outlet and it […]

30 Aug 2011
Mount Juliet House - Canon 28-55mm L Lens

Photo of the Week – Mount Juliet House, Co. Kilkenny, Ireland

I was testing out a nice Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 L USM Lens and with the weather being so nice I decided to try a shot I had taken many times before – Mount Juliet House, Co. Kilkenny. The day was bright, horses out in the paddocks, and the sun wasn’t too high resulting in some nice shadows and contrast of colour. I was very happy with the result. The Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 L USM is an amazing lens, […]

22 Aug 2011
International Space Station Over Waterford Bridge - ISS Waterford Bridge Photo

International Space Station Pictured over new Waterford Bridge

I was hoping the International Space Station would track directly over the new Waterford Bridge and had set up my camera at around 10pm with the ISS pass scheduled for 10:05pm over Waterford. I could see the ISS coming and took 2 quick shots of the bridge to check focus and light levels. Unfortunately as the ISS passed over head it was obvious the Space Station would track more Easterly than the South East track required to get it over […]

17 Aug 2011
Fire Blower 1 - Photo of the Week

Photo of the Week – Firebreather

I took this photo of a firebreather at an event in Mount Juliet, Co. Kilkenny. It was my first time using the Canon L Series of Lens (the Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 L USM Lens to be exact) and I was blown away by the results from that lens. The other thing that blew me away was this firebreather who was in attendance. I spotted the firebreather mid way through his act and had to setup quickly – put the […]

09 Aug 2011
Violinist at Spraoi 2011 - f/6 - performer playing violin

How to blur backgrounds using the aperture

Over the past few months there have been many daily searches to this site about depth of field and how to blur backgrounds. Professional photographers use this technique and this post will address some of these actual searches to this site, such as “how to make the background blurry”, “what to I change to make blurry backgrounds”, “camera settings blurred background”, “how to change depth of focus”, “how do you change camera settings to make a fuzzy background” and “what […]

02 Aug 2011
Waterford Spraoi Parade 2011 - Photo of the Week

Waterford Spraoi Parade – Photo of the Week, from the Spraoi Parade

This weeks Photo of the Week is from the Waterford Spraoi parade which took place on Sunday 31st July 2011. The theme of this years Spraoi Parade is “An Bosca Beo” – the “Box of Life”. The Spraoi Parade, “An Bosca Beo”, was designed by Spraoi Productions to be “a magical journey, following a box along its sometimes bumpy, sometimes winding road through life. From birth as the first box is delivered by giant storks, through the toy boxes of […]

21 Jul 2011
The Lonely Bike in Black and White - Photo of the Week

The Lonely Bike – Photo of the Week

I was out and about this evening in Waterford and took a few shots – this one I thought was nice. Seems like this bike just had enough, sleeping on the sidewalk, I think this photo just suits Black and White. I wanted to do more Black and White shots and I like this one. I have some more Waterford shots which I will put up in a separate post later in the week.

15 Jul 2011
Moon and Weather Vane in Dunmore East

Moon and Weather Vane in Dunmore East – Photo of the Week

I took this photo on Tuesday night in Dunmore East as the almost full moon was crossing behind the weather vane on top of the Dunmore East Lighthouse. I though it was an interesting composition (as if you didn’t know where the moon was) with the arrow slightly out of focus. The photo of Moon and Weather Vane in Dunmore East (0.2 sec at f/13 using ISO 100) Another photo I took that evening of Hook Head, taken about 20 minutes […]

29 Jun 2011
Fireworks at the Tall Ships Race 2011

Tall Ships Race Waterford, Photo Updates from Waterford

During the Waterford Tall Ships Race this page was updated with photos from the Tall Ships events in and around Waterford. There are some images and slideshows of the Tall Ships Race on this page. I went out on on the Tuesday night when a few ships had already docked and I took some shots of the preparations for the Tall Ships Festival. Tuesday Night I was blessed with an amazing sunset, and got some good shots of the plaza […]

26 Jun 2011
Lake Matheson at Fox Glacier Updated as HDR to recover details

Fox Glacier – Reflective Lakes, Lake Matheson – Photo Update

Having done some work on the Lake Matheson at Fox Glacier photo (see older post here) , I have finally retrieved the type of shot I was hoping for. The photo was taken in the late evening when there was a lot of shadow cast in the extreme right of the shot – so the trees were in total shadow. I created 3 exposures from the RAW file, one +1.65Ev, One original version with a bit of contrast and a […]

19 Jun 2011
Glencomeragh - Carrick Camera Club CCC Shoot

Glencomeragh – Carrick Camera Club Shoot

On Tuesday 14th June, Carrick Camera Club held an evening shoot at Glencomeragh, 10 minutes from Carrick On Suir, Co. Tipperary. I have posted some of my shots from this shoot below… taken before the weather and heavy mist moved in. In the limited time, low evening light and the critical lack of a tripod I was fairly happy with the shots…. especially since the 25 second exposures of the waterfalls was done balancing the camera on mossy rocks. (I […]

17 Jun 2011
Tramore Co. Waterford Evening Photo - Phot of the Week - Tramore

Tramore and Crashing Waves Evening Photo – Photo of the Week

I was out in Tramore last week. It was around 8pm and the sun was beginning to set. Waves were crashing in and there was some nice rays of sun here and there. I took the following photo of Tramore church in the background as the waves roll in at the pier. One of the techniques used in this photo was to keep the camera lens at a fixed length as I walked up and down the pier, trying different […]

06 Jun 2011
Lake Matheson Reflective Lakes Near Fox Glacier, New Zealand

Fox Glacier Reflective Lakes – Photo of the Week

This Vertical Landscape shot was taken near the village of Fox Glacier in New Zealand. This reflective lake is Lake Matheson less than 10 minutes west of Fox Glacier. The Lake walk takes about 75 minutes to do the full circuit. This is the end result… There are some spectacular colours to be had if you visit the lakes around sunset. I might upload the sunset shots from Lake Matheson on Flickr later in the week.

31 May 2011
Milford Sound, New Zealand from Township

Milford Sound from the Township – Photo of the Week

Milford Sound or Piopiotahi in Māori is a fjord (not actually a sound), located in the south west of New Zealand’s South Island. It is located within the Fiordland National Park and the Te Wahipounamu World Heritage site. Having driven from Te Anau we were greeted by this sight on exiting the car part at Milford Sound Tourist Centre. A tricky shot to take as the sun was quite low and lens flare was creeping in – but I had […]

23 May 2011
Mount Hamilton Panorama

Mount Hamilton Panorama – Photo of the Week

This panorama of Mount Hamilton was taken on the way from Dunedin to Te Anau on the South Island of New Zealand. The shot was taken with a wide angle lens and then cropped in a panorama format. Bit of photshop work was requried to bring out some of the detail hidden by the shadows created by the early morning sun. This whole area is amazing, with Te Anau and Milford Sound being stunningly picturesque, especially when the weather cooperates.

18 May 2011
One man and His Boat - Photo of the Week

One Man and his Boat – Photo of the Week

I like this photo for its simplicity. The photo was taken in, Timaru, a small town on the east coast of New Zealand. The Timaru Gardens are on the way out of the town as you head south and make for a very relaxing and enjoyable walk around these botanical gardens. The man in the shot was sailing his small boat on the lake within the gardens. The photo is very calm – yet, moments earlier it was chaotic with […]

10 May 2011
Singapore by Night - Photo of Singapore at Night

Singapore by Night – Photo of the Week

I took a few night shots in Singapore recently and remembered some tips which Canon Cameras had in one of their presentations regarding the taking of night shots. I came up with the following shot of Singapore by Night. The shot was taken around 10pm from the 22nd floor of the Fairmont Singapore Hotel. In the distance you can see the amazing Marina Bay  Sands Hotel, which has an observation deck, restaurant and infinity pool on the roof. You can […]

14 Apr 2011
Tree Stump Flower with Spring Flowers in Background with DOF

Springtime – Photos of the Week

Spring is a great time for any photographer. Lots of colour, variety of textures, and nice light in the spring mornings and evenings. Some Spring mornings have a mist of fog which can be nice to take photos during – however I was not lucky enough to be out and about while these mists were around – normally by 8:30am this has burned off. Its been over a week since I updated the PhotoBlog, so now I have uploaded 2 […]

05 Apr 2011
Focal Greyscale of Lismore Castle HDR - Photo of the Week, HDR of Lisore Castle, Co. Waterford

Steps to the Castle – Lismore Castle, Photo of the Week

I decided to upload a photo to the blog, and converted a shot which I liked and decided to upload it as Photo of the Week. Its a shot of Lismore Castle and steps leading up to the castle and grounds. I have a few different versions of this, the only thing I didn’t like was the way the sky came out. I even tried a semi-greyscale version which is shown below. I Actually found this path by accident as […]

23 Mar 2011

Reginalds Tower HDR with Star Trails – Photo of the Week

I took this photo as part of an internal Carrick Camera Club competition – The theme was “Motion”. I had experimented with a few different concepts but I thought the imposing and impressive Reginalds Tower might be a nice subject. I took 3 Bulb exposures each at about 45 seconds each. The exposures were -2 0 and +2 and were merged in Photoshop as a HDR. Next, Star Trails… These were taken over a  period of a few hours. Made […]

15 Mar 2011
Fashion at Mount Juliet Fashion Event

First Fashion Event – Photo of the Week

Hadn’t done a Photo of the Week for a while but I decided to upload a few of these. I took some photos at the recent Mount Juliet Spring Salon Fashion Event – first time I ever tried taking photos at something like this. The event was expertly staged and the luxurious setting of Mount Juliet House, only 20 minutes from Kilkenny was something very special.  The models come through fast, the lighting was subdued and at times was hard […]

06 Mar 2011

How to change Depth of Field and make blurred backgrounds

Sometimes when taking a photograph you don’t want your background to be focus as you might want the foreground. Normally you will want your subject to be in focus and the background to be either slightly out of focus or very out of focus.  In order to do this you need to take control of  your camera settings. The Aperture controls the depth of field. What is a Cameras Aperture? The Aperture is basically the eye of the camera which […]

20 Feb 2011

Coco : Cat Macro – Photo of the Week

I hadn’t taken many photos this week but this one of Coco the cat, I really love. Using Macro mode on the Canon 450D, with the flash bounced off the ceiling which allows for a soft tone but enough to give sharpness. I also upped the ISO to 400 as the light was low and shot at f/5.7 to get some nice Depth of Field going on. She made a great model and looked straight down the lens. Hope you […]

13 Feb 2011

How using IS on a Tripod can cause blurry images

Did you know that by having your Image Stabilization (IS) or Vibration Reduction(VR) can cause Blurry images? Some people told me this is a myth, I even found some websites saying this wasn’t the case. So I tried it out myself. I setup a shot with a 30 second exposure, on a tripod, F/18 shot with a cable release to avoid any shutter-depression induced shake. Shot 1 : Image Stabilisation Turned ON Shot 2 : Image Stabilisation Turned OFF As […]

06 Feb 2011

Arthurstown to Passage East at Sunset – Photo of the Week

This weeks photo of the week is not a very long exposure. Only 1.6s at F20 (ISO 100) but the colours I really like. I have cropped the photo to make it more landscape – the photo was taken at Arthurstown in County Wexford looking towards Passage East across the river. I took a few others at the time but the colours were less vibrant, also some birds in the area caused long exposure ghosting effects as they flew across […]

30 Jan 2011

HDR, 7 Minute Exposure at Granny Castle – Photo of the Week

I recently got a cable release for the Canon D450 and it has opened a new world of Bulb exposures. Before this my longest exposure (without using stacking software) would have been 30 seconds. Now I am doing 10 minute exposures and thinking nothing of it. This weeks photo of the week is one I took at Granny Castle looking West at Sunset. I was trying to get a long exposure of > 7 mins but the exposure was a […]

22 Jan 2011

Suir Bridge through fog – Photo of the Week

I took a few shots this week – however without a tripod (shame on me) I wasn’t overly happy with some of them. I did however, like this photo of the N25 Suir Bridge as the top of it peeks through a heavy freezing fog as well a an early morning shot in Co. Kilkenny. So technically I am doing 2 shots this week as I’m not sure which I was happiest with. The first one is the Suir Bridge […]

14 Jan 2011

Tramore, Back Strand Reflections – Photo of the Week

This week the Photo of the Week is a bit more local. Only 15 minute drive from Waterford, Tramore’s Back Strand is a great place to enjoy a walk and if you have the camera, you can get some good shots too. Photo topics at low tide include wading birds which can be seen searching for food, and in windy weather surfers enjoy the epic waves. This weeks Photo of the Week is a simple shot of the Sandhills and […]

07 Jan 2011

The Samson, Ardmore – Photo of the Week

On the Cliff Walk, which starts near the Cliff House Hotel, Ardmore, Co. Waterford and continues along the cliffs for about 40 minutes, I found an amazing sight. It was, The Samson. The Samson was a floating crane-ship which was under tow from Liverpool to Valetta, Malta and on 11th December just off the Welsh coast, the towline snapped in a force 6 to 7 south easterly gale. The crane ship ended up on the rocks at Ardmore near Rams […]

31 Dec 2010

Happy New Year and Here’s to 2011

Happy New Year and hope you have a very Happy 2011. I have decided that in 2011 I will upload a Thread or Series of Posts called “Photo of the Week”. This will force me to go out and take more photos as the camera has being sitting in the bag for the past 2 months with little to photograph. Lots of snow ! Hopefully my “Photo of the Week” might be of interest in 2011. Some Shots from 2010

05 Dec 2010

Why Snow appears Blue in Photographs…

Do you want to know How To Photograph Snow and have it come out white? Why does snow appear blue in photos … and how can you correct it? We have had a lot of Snow in Ireland over the last week and I have seen a lot of pictures on Facebook / Flickr which have a blue or non-natural snow colour. This post explains why thBasically, snow reflects a lot of light including the blue colour from the sky […]

30 Nov 2010
New Zealand Bay of Islands from the Sea

Welcome to the New PhotoBlog Website

Welcome to my new photoblog website – shanemcdonald.me. I’m going to be uploading some of my latest pictures, favourite photos, and also some other photography related blog posts. Nothing other than photos, photography, pictures and related items. I wanted to keep the content focused and separated from content on my other domains shanemcdonald.org, my personal website,  and shanemcdonald.com, which used to be a huge jokes website but has been reduced in size more recently. Hope you enjoy the photos on […]

27 Nov 2010

Using the iphone as a photography tool

Sometimes you get caught without your camera. I travelled to Bunclody on 26th November and it snowed on 27th … Alas, No camera with me! All I had was my iPhone and a collection of iPhone Apps. I have included some examples below of photos taken on the iPhone and made better with some clever photo apps. TiltShiftGen This allows you to add blur, vignetting, contrast and saturation to photos. End result is below. HDR For Free This App is […]

21 Nov 2010
Horses at Mount Juliet image

On the Way to Work – Horses at Play

On my way to work one morning, I spotted the morning mist was creeping along the River Nore at Mount Juliet. At the same time I spotted 3 playful foals in the paddocks. Luckily, I had the camera in the bag and spent a few minutes at the fence taking a few shots. I didn’t have time to look at checking my metering, or to change lenses (as I had a nice 75-300 in the bag). What I got wasn’t […]

21 Nov 2010
Small Bird at Lake Taupo, New Zealand

New Zealand, Lake Taupo Bird

On my way from Wellington to Lake Taupo on New Zealands North Island we stopped off at a viewing point at the start of Lake Taupo, about 45 minutes from the main town. There I took some nice shots of the lake, a storm coming from the East and the black swans which were swimming close to the shore. The main star of the shoot was this small bird, obviously very tame, which at every opportunity was jumping into shot. […]

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