Advent calendar photo project

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Advent Calendar Adventure

Recently I've taken on a self imposed project inspired by an advent calendar gift from my generous friends Dave @redorbrownsauce (worth a follow) and Alison.

I was the lucky recipient of a 'Drinks by the Dram' advent calendar. A wonderful gift comprising of 24 very personable and delectable whiskey drams, one for each day of advent.

Initially I decided to just micro-blog the dram pictures for my friends to see on Facebook and Twitter, but things soon spiralled into more and more elaborate set-ups. I'm a photographer, it's the way things go.

Throughout last 12 days I've been shooting the drams on an iPhone using different lighting techniques. Its been pretty cathartic re-discovering old lighting techniques that I hadn't used in a while and actually trying to find the limits of what the new iPhone 6 plus is capable of.  More recently I've been trying some light painting techniques to add a little extra drama and dimension to the images. The standard camera app within the iPhone isn't very customisable, but a quick download of an app called 'Slow Shutter' (69p purchase), allows you to drag the shutter or hold exposure open for long periods of time. This will enable you to capture light trials and paint with the light. This little app, will even allow you to stack or make multiple exposures, very handy when painting with light. So armed with a mixture of torches and gels, I've been creating little dioramas that depict the dram in different lighting situations.


We're only at the half way point, so there's plenty of adventure left in this advent calendar. At present I've been inspired by a celebrity cat walk in Day 7, a northern lights scene in Day 10, a retro 70's old school disco in Day 11 and a Kylie inspired shoot in Day 12. Where do you think I should take the project next? Post your ideas below and I'll do my best to create the magic for you.

The images have been well received by my Facebook and Twitter followers and it's even seen some high praise from the good guys @DrinksbytheDram.

Here's a BTS of the set up on top of a cabinet in the office.







Keep watching and drink responsibly.

'Keep it in camera'


Remember: Please post your comments below and share if you like the pics. You can also follow the action daily @gregharding , you'll also see a few that don't make the official advent day.