Sunday, 8 November 2009



One of the things that put a lot of people off Colin baker's Doctor was his awful costume, which i often describe as looking like an "explosion in a clown factory".
Well, in 2002 BBCi released the webcast story "Realtime". This featured the Sixth Doctor in a much better blue version of his costume. This version of the costume has also popped up on a few cover illustrations as well, namely some of the Big Finish Audio Productions.
Once again, this figure is a Forbidden Planet Exclusive.

Saturday, 7 November 2009

Thursday, 5 November 2009

The First Doctor

First among Equals

William & Patrick

I finally got round to opening my 1st and 2nd Doctor action figures yesterday. (Only took a month!) These are available exclusively from Forbidden Planet in the UK, and come in colour and black & white versions.
I went for the colour versions, on the grounds that I were buying them primarily to photograph and if I wanted them black & white I could do so after the fact.
I used an 18' pop-up softbox for most of the shots, with a grid for a rimlight. Mostly I had the Speedlights set to E-TTL metering, as this allowed me to vary may aperture without having to fiddle with the power settings on the flashes.

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

It's not all Doctor Who and Dinosaurs....

Morpheus-Dream 4

.....I do sometimes photograph real people too!

Last Saturday (Halloween) I spent the day being "photographer in residence" at the "Halloween Havoc" event at Legacy Comics in Halifax.

We set up in the Temporary Art Space in the Piece Hall at around 11am, planning to start shooting at about 1pm.

The Gear Table
From Matt Birdsall Photography

Setup Shot

Basically the setup consisted of a Canon 430ex each side set to 1/4 power, each gelled with a 1/4 CTB Gel. These where intended to separate the subject from the background.
The main light was a Canon 580ex in a 24" pop-up softbox. This was set to 1/16 power, to provide a little fill.
All the flashes where triggered with Elinchrome Skyports, with the softbox on Channel 1, and the rim/edge lights on channel 2. This enabled me to remove the softbox from the setup by using the Group switch on the Skyport trigger, with out having to do it manually.
I shot mainly with the Canon 70-200 f4L IS lense, at around f5.6-8, depending on the subject.

Each subject only took 1-2 minutes to shoot, with some of the more interesting costumes or people getting shot both portrait and landscape, and different framings.

Next year I hope to repeat the shoot, but next year i will make sure to have a bigger medium grey background, and try and have a dry run at the shoot beforehand.
Overall I were happy with the shots I got, my personal favourites being The Sandman, Solid Snake, Black Cat and Scarlet Witch.
All of the images HERE.

I'd also like to thank Simon at Legacy Comics, Chris & Vern for their able assistance and all the great costume competition entrants.