Nightwalking the City

Learning to edit my own work without input from anyone is kind of like a dog chasing its own tail.

I am doing what I can by learning from the many books I’ve acquired during this time, publications, and of course, the web. But it’s not enough… there is a longer account of this brewing in the background. In the meantime, walk with me in the city, after dark.












  1. Some very cool shadows at play here. I love the one with the blue wall and orange light at the end. It is a shame we never got around to doing a night photo walk and shoot together, we must do that next time. Then we can also place each other as shadowy silhouetted models in the shots :)

    I do love the few photo books I have available here at my sister’s place. And they do influence me to some extent, however I try not to study the books nor articles on the net with an analytical mind trying to extract golden nuggets of knowledge. I do not wish to become too influenced or do it any other way than my way. So I learn mostly by doing, I just dive into it and hone my skills. The net is filled with far too many how to do this and that articles.

    I think in this series, for me, I feel like no. 4 and 5 do not belong. Rest is pretty darn awesome!

    1. I probably didn’t play with these images enough. Now i’m looking at them, none of them seem to go. Dan Milnor was right when he said that we’re too close to our own work to be able to edit it properly. Had I not taken these pics, I reckon I’d be able to make a more cohesive set out of them. Sigh!

      There’s something to be said for just doing it and also something to be said for learning what to look out for/keep in mind. There’s only so far I can go with just utilizing what knowledge I’ve observed, and I am at the stage where I need some guidance from someone who does actually know what they’re doing. Like the people who put together any of the great books I’ve got in hand at the moment, for one….*wishful thinking* I doubt there are many photo editors in Perth though, and them giving moi the time of the day…. winning the lottery would be easier!

      I like the blue alley wall one too… that’s my favourite of this set. However I think it’s probably the one that doesn’t fit in the most. Ah hell….

  2. how to do you get those shadows right???? i just made the transition (or trying to make it happen) from point and shoot to my first DSLR and i am either too bright or too dark. those are some awsome shots. congrats.

    1. Just practice and practice really. Best way to familiarise yourself your new gear is to shoot manual, and observe what happens everytime you make an adjustment on one element, then 2 in tandem, 3 in tandem – shutter, aperture, ISO before anything else. Knowing your gear will help you get the results you want. Also, learn basic post processing to finish your desired image… it’s pretty amazing how different an image can look with a simple contrast bump in whatever photo editor you’ve got at hand

      1. thanks charlene. shall keep those tips in mind. i am going to post my first few pics soon on my site. hope not too disappointing.

      2. They’re bound to be disappointing at first, but keep trying. It’ll come to you. Best of luck! I shall keep an eye on your site.

  3. Looking forward to hearing more about the process you’re going through. Picking, choosing, editing is tough. Not least because everyone’s got a different opinion, but then even those opinions change from one day to the next.

    I find leaving work alone for a while, and coming back to it a day or two later, helps with the process. The yes? no? maybe? I was stuck on previously, suddenly becomes much clearer. The problem with this approach is that a few days later…you see it differently. Again!

    1. I have a massive post in the writing for that one. You are so right about the constantly changing opinions!

      The leaving work along bit does work for me to an extent. I’m ruthless with editing when it comes to paid work (weddings, portraits etc) because there are set boundaries on what I have to deliver, and I find that really effective in creating a good edit (watch me cull a wedding set down to 300 images from 2000), especially if there’s a book involved, because I know exactly what I want out of it.

      Personal work is another beast though. There are really no boundaries, no expectations, nothing to really frame your work except your own decisions, and that’s where I find it hard to make one. No matter how long I’ve left it, my experiences while making those photos are still intact, and colouring the decisions around whether to keep it or not, no matter how firm my proposed direction is. Can’t be objective enough.

  4. Some very cool frames here that work beautifully, with exquisite shadow play and composition. I think you raise an interesting point about editing our own work. It can definitely be true that perhaps we are too close to our own frames to make editing work sometimes, and I have had some of my frames edited by other photographers with my consent and been blown away with the different end result and individualism of vision.

    But, I fundamentally believe that there is that passion, drive, love for our craft that translates through the frame from it’s original Raw file right up to the fully processed image as a Jpeg, and our editing of a frame is reflected in that important chain of events, that at the hands of others is just not there. I guess also it’s a control thing as well, we like to control the facets of the image, the processes that make it a whole. I think you’ve done a wonderful job on composition and editing here with some very moody, interesting and beautifully presented images.

    1. Thank you Paul :) You raise some good points there, and brought up a point that i didn’t clarify. I guess when I say edit, i meant edit for public showing, whether in a book, gallery, slideshow. You know, final product implementation kinda stage.

      We can (and should) all certainly edit our own work, especially in the preliminary stages, to make sure we’re getting the images out there, that reflects our intent with the series. There are a lot of creative people who are totally capable of editing their work from start to end, but i’m nowhere near there yet, so it’s a long journey ahead for me.

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