Selected for the 32nd AOP Photography Awards

Association of Photographers Chooses Two Images For Awards’ Finals

Thrilled to share some good news! The judges of the AOP Photography Awards have chosen two of my images to go through to the finals of the awards.

The first image was shot on my Olympus PEN E-P5 and Olympus M.Zuiko 12-40mm f2.8 PRO.

The thoughful superhero. July 19, 2015. Photo: ©Edmond Terakopian

The thoughful superhero. July 19, 2015. Photo: ©Edmond Terakopian

The second image was shot on my Olympus OM-D E-M1 and Olympus M.Zuiko 12-40mm f2.8 PRO.

A murmuration of starlings at dusk, just after the sunset at the beach in Blackpool, Lancashire, United Kingdom. March 10, 2015. Photo: ©Edmond Terakopian

A murmuration of starlings at dusk, just after the sunset at the beach in Blackpool, Lancashire, United Kingdom. March 10, 2015. Photo: ©Edmond Terakopian

My thanks to the judges and staff at the AOP. Fingers crossed for the final judging!

Both images were processed in Adobe’s Lightroom and finished in Alienskin’s Exposure 7 plugin.

A Wonderful Experience

“Good Energy”

"Embellished Abundance" was directed by Nella Turkki and Muti Musafiri; a short creation with young dancers from London, was part of the J'Agura event by Muti Musafiri and the South Bank Centre Youth Club. London. August 28, 2015. Photo: ©Edmond Terakopian

“Embellished Abundance” was directed by Nella Turkki and Muti Musafiri; a short creation with young dancers from London, was part of the J’Agura event by Muti Musafiri and the South Bank Centre Youth Club. London. August 28, 2015. Photo: ©Edmond Terakopian

Had a wonderfully enriching experience; love it when life brings unexpected joys such as this. After collecting my failed entry into the Taylor Wessing Portrait Prize on Friday, I was driving straight home. Something made me change my mind as I was drawn to the South Bank, for absolutely no solid reason, other than a feeling.

Camera in hand, I began wondering around and in a short time stumbled across an amazing group of dancers performing amongst the public, along the Queens Walk on the South Bank. They were superb. I approached them afterwards to find out some details and was told they were just practicing ahead of their proper performance later in the evening. So, naturally I hung around.

Ahead of the performance, the group got together in a circle to mentally prepare. I was watching this from outside, contemplating a photograph when voices called out. A few of the dancers called out for me to join in the circle as I had a “good energy”! How very wonderful! Such a gift to get magical experiences like this. The performance was wonderful, made lovely images and ended in such great conversations with the dancers. Just fabulous :-)

On a technical note, the image was made with a Leica Monochrom (Type 246) and a Leica 35mm FLE Summilux, processed in Adobe Lightroom.

Cooling Fans

Keeping Your Hard Drives & Computer Cool

The warmest room by far in most  homes is the home office, mainly because that’s where the computer and the hard drives live. Any creative will generate loads of data (pictures, video or audio) which means loads of hard drives for storage and backup. Even though some external hard drives have fans to keep things cool, once these pile up, pockets of hot air form and have an effect on both the active (fan) and passive (heatsink) cooling of hard drives. Excess heat can result in hard drive failure and on computers erratic behaviour at best or failure of internal components at worst.

A powered USB hub and a pair of USB fans cool down my hard drives. July 18, 2015. Photo: Edmond Terakoian

A powered USB hub and a pair of USB fans cool down my hard drives. July 18, 2015. Photo: Edmond Terakoian

Server rooms in offices have specific air-conditioning installed to keep the storage arrays cool, but alas most of us won’t be in a position to do that. Next best thing is to move the hot air away from the drives and also to cool the air falling upon and into them.

A powered USB hub and a pair of USB fans cool down my hard drives. July 18, 2015. Photo: Edmond Terakoian

A powered USB hub and a pair of USB fans cool down my hard drives. July 18, 2015. Photo: Edmond Terakoian

A very simple and cheap solution is to install a powered USB hub and plug in some USB fans. These will cool down the air and also move the air around. Simple, cheap, easy and effective.

A USB fan cools down the air before it get's sucked into my MacPro. July 18, 2015. Photo: Edmond Terakoian

A USB fan cools down the air before it get’s sucked into my MacPro. July 18, 2015. Photo: Edmond Terakoian

Another use for the simple USB fan is to have it cool down the air that’s sucked into your computer by it’s own internal cooling fan. By cooling the air outside the computer, the computer’s internal cooling system has a more effective job of keeping the CPU, GPU and internal hard drives cool. Incidentally, having a fan blow cooler air towards the air intake on your laptop will have the same effect (on Apple MacBooks it’s the hinge between the screen and keyboard. On PCs it’s sometimes the same place and sometimes on one of the sides).

Naturally, on hot days, the same technology can be used to cool you down too!

Good places to source this equipment will be Scan, Amazon or Dabs.

London Bombings

10 Years On From The Terrorist Attacks On London

Paul Dadge leads Davinia Turrell (now Davinia Douglass) away from Edgware Road tube station after a suicide bomb attack in which she suffered burn injuries, resulting in the need for a face mask. The bomber blew himself up on a train at the station, killing seven passengers - one of four coordinated attacks on London's public transport system during the morning rush hour. The bombs exploded within 50 seconds of each other on London Underground trains, and the fourth bomb occurred on a bus less than an hour later. The explosions resulted in some 56 deaths (including those of the four bombers) and 700 injuries. Surveillance video footage showed that the four men had been working together. Intelligence services have claimed links between the bombers and al-Qaeda. Edgware Road underground station, London, United Kingdom. July 07, 2005. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

Paul Dadge leads Davinia Turrell (now Davinia Douglass) away from Edgware Road tube station after a suicide bomb attack in which she suffered burn injuries, resulting in the need for a face mask. The bomber blew himself up on a train at the station, killing seven passengers – one of four coordinated attacks on London’s public transport system during the morning rush hour. The bombs exploded within 50 seconds of each other on London Underground trains, and the fourth bomb occurred on a bus less than an hour later. The explosions resulted in 56 deaths (including those of the four bombers) and 700 injuries. Surveillance video footage showed that the four men had been working together. Intelligence services have claimed links between the bombers and al-Qaeda. Edgware Road underground station, London, United Kingdom. July 07, 2005. Photo: ©Edmond Terakopian

It’s with a heavy heart that I look back to the events of 10 years ago. 7/7, the day my home town was attacked by four suicide bombers who killed innocent people who were just trying to commute using the tube trains and a bus.

A commuter, still clutching his morning newspaper, leaves Edgware Road Underground Station after a suicide bomb attack. The bomber blew himself up on a train at the station, killing seven passengers - one of four coordinated attacks on London's public transport system during the morning rush hour. The bombs exploded within 50 seconds of each other on London Underground trains, and the fourth bomb occurred on a bus less than an hour later. The explosions resulted in some 56 deaths (including those of the four bombers) and 700 injuries. Surveillance video footage showed that the four men had been working together. Intelligence services have claimed links between the bombers and al-Qaeda. Edgware Road underground station, London, United Kingdom. July 07, 2005. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

A commuter, still clutching his morning newspaper, leaves Edgware Road Underground Station after a suicide bomb attack. The bomber blew himself up on a train at the station, killing seven passengers. Edgware Road underground station, London, United Kingdom. July 07, 2005. Photo: ©Edmond Terakopian

I thought it appropriate to republish a slightly updated version of the article I wrote for the Digital Journalist at the time of the attacks:

London’s Darkest Hour

July 7, 2005. I was looking forward to today. Yesterday had ended on a high. London had been nominated as the Olympic City for 2012. I had two excellent assignments today; the first was an 8.30am photocall at the Natural History Museum to photograph a new diamond exhibition. The second was an exclusive look at how the Police were monitoring the security for the G8 summit from their secret control centre.

There must have been around 20 photographers waiting to photograph the diamonds. We were queuing to photograph the world’s largest uncut diamond. I was waiting patiently, macro lens and lights in hand, for my turn. As I contemplated getting a coffee, my phone rang; it was the PA office, for whom I was working today. “There’s been an explosion at Aldgate East tube station….get there. They’re saying it’s a power surge”. I caught every one’s attention as I started to pack away my gear, as a few colleagues were waiting to borrow my macro lens! Slowly, the others began to get calls.

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As I rushed outside, a friend from AP asked for a lift as we were both going to Aldgate. We got in my car and started making our way as quickly as traffic allowed. The phone rang again, “There’s been a second explosion at Edgware Road tube. Go there instead as you’re closer”. My heart sank. This was no longer an accident as originally thought. How can there be two explosions on the tube in the same morning. I knew it must be terrorism. I began to think of 9/11. The first plane could have been an accident, but as the second plane hit…..

We were very lucky. The traffic was a lot better than usual and we got to Edgware Road quickly. As we got to the scene, we were greeted by a lot of silence. The emergency services were all busy. No screaming of orders, nor the sound of sirens. I must commend them on their professionalism. Unfortunately, the Police had erected their cordons, and there was no way to get close to the tube station. I did a quick walk around the roads, and decided which would be the best. Luckily I had picked the correct road. Within ten minutes, the first passengers walked out and down the road, closely followed by the walking wounded. The first sight that drew me was a lady being helped by a young man (Paul Dadge as I found out the following day). Her face was burnt and she had a white face mask on. She was barefoot, and had blood on her legs. I felt bad for her suffering. I had an instance of battling with the shock of witnessing what clearly illustrated something terrible had happened beneath us. Reminding myself of my duty as a photojournalist, my camera was raised. For the next five minutes, all I saw was through the viewfinder. Concentrating on the images which were presenting themselves.

Paul Dadge leads Davinia Turrell (now Davinia Douglass) away from Edgware Road tube station after a suicide bomb attack in which she suffered burn injuries, resulting in the need for a face mask. The bomber blew himself up on a train at the station, killing seven passengers - one of four coordinated attacks on London's public transport system during the morning rush hour. The bombs exploded within 50 seconds of each other on London Underground trains, and the fourth bomb occurred on a bus less than an hour later. The explosions resulted in some 56 deaths (including those of the four bombers) and 700 injuries. Surveillance video footage showed that the four men had been working together. Intelligence services have claimed links between the bombers and al-Qaeda. Edgware Road underground station, London, United Kingdom. July 07, 2005. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

Paul Dadge leads Davinia Turrell (now Davinia Douglass) away from Edgware Road tube station after a suicide bomb attack in which she suffered burn injuries, resulting in the need for a face mask. The bomber blew himself up on a train at the station, killing seven passengers. Edgware Road underground station, London, United Kingdom. July 07, 2005. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

It was a very intense five minutes. So many injured. The thing that struck me the most though, was I only saw one person crying. Everyone else was composed; there was no screaming, no running. Everyone, including the lady with the burnt face, and even the crying lady, were very dignified. I saw a gentleman, bandaged on his neck and head, blood on his face and shirt, still carrying his newspaper (now covered in blood) as if nothing out of the ordinary had happened. It was amazing. This was the British spirit; the stiff upper lip talked of by Sir Winston Churchill.

The wounded were taken to the Hilton Metropole Hotel. I decided to go inside and managed to stay for several minutes, taking pictures of the wounded waiting for treatment. It must have been the world’s poshest triage area. The hotel’s security soon noticed me, and I was asked to leave.

An injured Davinia Turrell (now Davinia Douglass) from the Edgware Road Station Underground suicide bomb attack get medical attention in the triage area set up at the Hilton London Metropole Hotel in Edgware Road. The bomber blew himself up on a train at the station, killing seven passengers - one of four coordinated attacks on London's public transport system during the morning rush hour. The bombs exploded within 50 seconds of each other on London Underground trains, and the fourth bomb occurred on a bus less than an hour later. The explosions resulted in some 56 deaths (including those of the four bombers) and 700 injuries. Surveillance video footage showed that the four men had been working together. Intelligence services have claimed links between the bombers and al-Qaeda. Edgware Road underground station, London, United Kingdom. July 07, 2005. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

An injured Davinia Turrell (now Davinia Douglass) from the Edgware Road Station Underground suicide bomb attack get medical attention in the triage area set up at the Hilton London Metropole Hotel in Edgware Road. London, United Kingdom. July 07, 2005. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

After another ten minutes or so, it was obvious all the pictures had been taken and I made my way to the nearest Starbucks to wire on their WiFi. Although all the mobile networks (cellphones) were down, WiFi was still working…thankfully. After wiring I returned to the scene. As nothing was going on, I contacted the office. They asked me to check out Kings Cross station. By now, we knew that there were at least four explosions; three on the tube, and one on a bus.

Walking wounded leave Edgware Road Underground Station after a suicide bomb attack. The bomber blew himself up on a train at the station, killing seven passengers - one of four coordinated attacks on London's public transport system during the morning rush hour. The bombs exploded within 50 seconds of each other on London Underground trains, and the fourth bomb occurred on a bus less than an hour later. The explosions resulted in some 56 deaths (including those of the four bombers) and 700 injuries. Surveillance video footage showed that the four men had been working together. Intelligence services have claimed links between the bombers and al-Qaeda. Edgware Road underground station, London, United Kingdom. July 07, 2005. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

Walking wounded leave Edgware Road Underground Station after a suicide bomb attack. The bomber blew himself up on a train at the station, killing seven passengers. Edgware Road underground station, London, United Kingdom. July 07, 2005. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

As I made my way, a friend contacted me saying that he had heard of someone who had been evacuated from Leicester Square tube, following another explosion. This was minutes ago. I called the office to let them know, and I made my way. The streets were clear. No cars, no buses, no people. Just silent emptiness.

I got there to find that there was no explosion; just that the station, along with all others in London were closed. I found out later that it was a controlled explosion by the Army on a suspect package.

I got to Kings Cross. Police cordons were well and truly up. There was no access. The explosions were below ground and there was nothing to photograph. Knowing how long this day was going to be, I grabbed a sandwich and a coffee.

I was then sent to Tavistock Square, where the bus had been bombed. I had high hopes of getting an image as this was in plain sight. As I got there and saw the hoards of frustrated media, I knew this wasn’t to be easy. Again, the Police with their cordon tape had been out and had covered everything within sight with blue and white tape. I attempted to get into a high rise hotel, only to be greeted rather rudely by two security men. I was rather chuffed as another four joined them. Obviously they thought two goons weren’t enough!

After another hour or so, I had to admit defeat; there was no way I could find an angle. I called the office and was told not to worry, as one of our photographers had managed to get a good shot. “Can you get to Downing Street for Blair in 20 minutes?”. I said that it was impossible! I was sent anyway!

It was for a picture of the PM arriving at number 10. I had missed it. I got another call, “Can you go to Buckingham Palace, the flag’s at half mast”. Back in the car, and off I went. This was the last image I took today. A very sad and symbolic way to end London’s darkest day. My city had been targeted by terrorists.

Terrorist suicide bombing of London.  The Union Flag flies at half mast at Buckingham Palace follwing the request of the Queen in memory of the victims who lost their lives in the morning's terrorist attacks. July 07, 2005. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

Terrorist suicide bombing of London. The Union Flag flies at half mast at Buckingham Palace follwing the request by the Queen in memory of the victims who lost their lives in the morning’s terrorist attacks. July 07, 2005. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

*I have since left PA. For syndication of this work please contact Eyevine or Polaris Images.

RODELink Review

My Review Of The RØDELink Filmmaker Kit

The new Rodelink wireless setup. May 19, 2015. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

The new Rodelink wireless setup. May 19, 2015. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

Easy. That’s the surprise when you first setup the new RODELink. So easy to setup and start shooting with. One button pairing, digital wireless and a distance of up to 100 meters.

The RodeLink Film Maker Kit on my Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II. May 16, 2015. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

The RodeLink Film Maker Kit on my Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II. May 16, 2015. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

Rode’s first wireless system works a treat; fast to get going with and great audio too. The Filmmaker Kit comes with a transmitter receiver, the excellent Rode Lavalier mic and also a minijack cable for attaching the receiver to your camera or audio recorder.

Olympus Magazine Interview – May 2015

10 Page Interview

Olympus Magazine May 2015 Front

Thrilled to share that this month’s Olympus Magazine has a 10 page interview with me about my photography and video work.

You can get your free online copy HERE.

Alternatively, you can download a PDF of just the 10 page interview HERE.

Photoshoot with model Jordan Ebbitt. London. April 10, 2015. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

A portrait of Jordan Ebbitt. London. April 10, 2015. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

Tips On How Not To Annoy Professional Photographers

Things To Avoid

L-R: Edmond Terakopian and Ian Berry having a chat about all things photographic London.  January 22, 2015. Photo: Neil Buchan-Grant

L-R: Edmond Terakopian and Ian Berry having a chat about all things photographic. London. January 22, 2015. Photo: Neil Buchan-Grant

1- Do not say “Great capture”. So annoying. Calling it a good photograph, shot or picture is all that’s needed.

2- Do not say “wow, I bet you get really nice pictures with that camera”. The camera doesn’t make the photographs; the photographer does. It’s just like you wouldn’t compliment a writer on their choice of word processor or a chef on their choice of pan.

3- Do not say things like “nice bokeh”! It’s not a compliment to make a comment on the out of focus areas on a picture; probably better to concentrate on the actual subject in the picture. If you really like how the lens renders out of focus detail (bokeh) write to the manufacturer and lens designer. They designed it and so, deserve your praise.

4- “I could’ve done that if I was there”. Well, being there at the right time is half the skill; then it’s making it happen in camera. Trust me, it’s not that easy when everything’s going down.

…perhaps most importantly:

5- Respect your copyright and don’t give away your pictures for free (or for ridiculously low pay. Remember, if it’s worth publishing, it’s worth paying for). You’re ruining an entire industry when you do this. Imagine if in your line of work a hobbyist turned up and started working for free. You would soon not have a job.

Feel free to add to this list in the comments below and please do share this post around :-) Thanks.

Edmond Terakopian at the new Wembley Stadium, covering the first football game after it's opening. Photo: Stuart Emmerson

Edmond Terakopian at the new Wembley Stadium, covering the first football game after its opening. Photo: Stuart Emmerson