Friday, July 18, 2008

Mr. Philthy Norton

Got a message from Phil yesterday & he was keen to get some shots at the Bel Air dirt jumps for his sponsor BMX Direct. Bel Air is in Somerset West & is a great spot for shots at any time of the day, but I was keen to get some late afternoon shots & have the sunset colours in the BG. The sun sets right in front of the main jumps landing, so we had to wait until it had set properly so Phil didn't get blinded by it.

I went to pick Koos up after work & the light was disappearing fast so we missioned as fast as possible to the jumps & got there just before it was completely dark. The jumps are under huge pine trees so it gets dark really quickly there. Phil had a few tricks in mind & there was hardly time to do them all with the light just about gone. I set up as fast as I could & had a warm up shot or 2 of him just getting some air & then it was down to business. 3 tricks needed to be done & shot in a matter of minutes & 1st was a 360 X-up... laced 1st try, I'm stoked I got the timing right, because looking through the viewfinder I couldn't see him against the trees at all, but could hear the bike whizzing through the air & clicked as he reached the peak of the jump & that was it. Next was just a nice big whip & 3 goes gave us 2 shots because one of my flashes didn't fire on the one shot for some strange reason.... then Sam & Henri came just in time for the last trick & by that time Phil couldn't see the landing at all. This was the trick Phil was after & has been getting them dialed in good & proper the last few weeks & it definitely paid off. 1st back flip he laced, but I cut his wheels on the top edge of the frame, coz I wasn't looking through the viewfinder & didn't aim high enough so he had to give it another go for me... I was a bit miffed that I missed it because it was dark & he made it 1st try & knew it would be difficult to do it again under these conditions. 2nd go I made sure I was going to get him in the shot & moved back a little, he laced it again & this time I got the timing even better than the 1st so was stoked!

So that was it... we came... we saw.... & we left.


Some pics from the shoot.

Warm up boost

360 X-Up

Sunset Whip

Black Flip

The Crew... Henri, Koos, Phil & Sam

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Chris on Campus

I got a call from Chris (the man behind the Stellenbosch Skatepark) on monday afternoon to go shoot/session a rail on the edge of Stellenbosch University. I was keen to have a late afternoon street shoot & try some longer exposures with my flashes with some lights in the BG.

Had a good shoot at the rail & was running around like a headless chicken changing the lighting setup for just about every trick & getting back to the angle I wanted just in time to catch him. There is a tree on the one side & a light pole on the other & made it nice & challenging to get the lighting right. One of the BMXers, Jo was filming, so I had a partner to talk nonsense with while we shot.

After we had finished with the rail I wanted to get a shot of him gapping a nearby 9 set of stairs...
We got a bit distracted from that mission & started to play with longer exposures of him gapping over & tapping a pole on the way. As we finished that we went to get ready for the gap, but heard the familiar voice of the campus security telling us to leave.... and so ended our little evening session.


A few pics from the session.

Gap from the path on the left to royale

Gap from the path on the left to royale

Royale to topsoul 180

Royale to topsoul rewind 3 out

Fastplant the pavement to back farf the rail & hopped over to top acid. This was one of the most difficult shots, had to get the whole spot with a good angle to see him & I only have 2 flashes. Need to invest in a 3rd one, coz a rim light on him would have made it so much better.

Wide shot of the pole bonk (manual HDR in pshp)

Pole bonk with slow exposure & a bit more movement

Parallel grab pole bonk

Thanks to Chris & Jo for a good session.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Natural Selection

The weather in the Cape has been rather miserable the last few weeks with the sun trying very hard to make an appearance & not very successfully, so in looking through some of my photo's I decided to brighten up my page with a few of my favorite nature shots. A completely different aspect of photography to the action that I'm also extremely passionate about. Living on Nature Reserves my whole life & having an ecologist for a father has grounded me to enough to appreciate the delicate intricacies of nature and the love of open spaces.

Rock Kestrel at Eagle Encounter (near Spier) taken on our macro workshop with a 105mm.

A crab in De Hoop came to see what we were up to. Shot with my 70-300mm & lit with an SB-24 on sync cable.

Baby Olive House Snake my dad found in the garden. Shot with 105mm & lit with 2 SB-600's

A bee drinking from a fountain in our garden. Lit with SB-24 on sync cable.

This dragonfly was a great model & let me get really up close & personal.

A tiny fly brushing the pollen off a flower in mid flight. Shot with a 105mm (& some patience)

A thin male mantis in our garden. Shot with a 105mm

An abstract macro on a Sundew leaf. Shot with a 105mm

An abstract on a March Lilly. Shot with a 105mm

One of my very 1st macro's of a flower in our garden. Shot with a 105mm

Experimenting with refraction in De Hoop. Shot with a 105mm

Playing with refractions of a tiny flower in drops on a spider web. Shot with a 105mm

Belville & Lions Head from Muratie Wine Farm. Shot with 70-300mm

View over the Cape Flats toward Table Mountain from Sommerset West. Shot with 70-300mm

One of the wild horses in Aus, Namibia in the late afternoon. Shot with 70-300mm

An HDR of Simonsberg from Rustenberg wine & dairy farm. Shot with 16mm fisheye

Vineyard detail from the Helshoogte Pass. Shot with 70-300mm

An HDR of the De Hoop Vlei. Shot with a 16mm fisheye

De Hoop Dunes. Shot with an 18-35mm

Storm over Strand from Gordons Bay. Shot with a 70-300mm

A female ostrich from a nearby farm on De Hoop Nature Reserve. Shot with a 16mm fisheye

Luminography (light painting) with my SB-24 on an old abandoned bakkie in Sommerset West. 30 sec exposure & ran around in the dark triggering the flash manually. Shot with 16mm fisheye.

A self portrait of sorts. Me refracted in drops on a spiderweb... after trying with a few different flowers & though about trying this & managed to get a few. The pink BG is my skin behind the drops... was really early in the morning, so I wasn't looking my best, but like the pic & thought I would share it.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Paarl Session

Had a little session with 2 friends (Koos & Gregg) in Paarl yesterday & after the last mission there I was keen to get more pics & got a 10.5mm fisheye & was keen to see the difference between that & the 16mm fisheye I had used the time before & the 10.5mm is SO nice for really close wide shots & was twice as close & still getting more than I did with the 16mm. My lighting setup was pretty much the same, but I raised the rim light on the left a bit to minimize harsh shadows on the face & once I had set up Koos was kind enough to take some shots of Gregg & I.

A shot of Chretien with the 16mm on the previous session
Back Farf to Acid


A few of my faves below from yesterday with the 10.5mm

Me- Top Mistrial

Gregg- Back Farf

Me- Parallel Fish

The man behind the cam for the day - Koos

More from the shoot on my Flickr site

Friday, July 11, 2008

Genesis... The Beginning

Well this is the first post here for me, so will explain what I'm all about.

Eric Palmer

Born: 26 July 1983

I'm a photographer/rollerblader from Stellenbosch South Africa.
I'm relatively new to photography myself (bin shooting for just over a year), but my mom Nicole Palmer is a professional photographer & has been teaching photography for the last 15 years or so & I have picked up a lot of the theory over the years being subjected to her lectures & preparation for the workshops.

I studied animation for 3 years & did a short editing course & started to become more active in the workshops with the photoshop side & a good family friend & photographer Willem Oets was kind enough to send me his old D70 body as he moved to Canon. This was just a little over a year ago & from not being very interested in photography & wanting to take a few snaps of my friends skating, it has completely taken over my life & I often find myself choosing the camera over my rollerblades these days.

I'm quite heavily influenced by my mother for obvious reasons & she is an art photographer & even though I shoot completely different subjects to what she does, her philosophy about photography is a strong driving force behind my approach. I will shoot anything... bands, portrait, sports, landscape, macro... literally anything that catches my attention. My preferences are action sports... (mainly BMX, Downhill MTB, Skateboarding & Rollerblading) and macro on insects. I'm seriously addicted to flash photography & have recently gotten some pocket wizards & am loving them!!

A shot of me skating in Paarl, liked the angle, so asked a friend (Chretien Le Keur)
to get a shot of me.

Well... that's enough about me for now...


Went on a shoot with some friends that are in a band The Pretty Blue Guns on Wednesday & the weather in Stell was rather gloomy. We met at Mystic Boer & was actually a really great venue for a shoot & we got lucky & the sun came out for a few minutes & we managed to get some more shots in front of the Moederkerk.

A few of my favorites I've edited so far.

Warming up with a game of pool

Chilling at the bar

An HDR of Andre & Lucas checking the pictures in the bathroom
At the Moederkerk
An HDR just to see my lighting setup at the Church
An HDR done in Photomatix of the guys in the girls bathroom in Mystic Boer Stellenbosch. We had a bunch of desperate girls after the shoot ;)

More to come soon....