My references

Here the link to my reference library

My references


wow it is the end !

Today I packed everything so I can mail my work for the school to be assessed.

I have included:

  •      An short introduction letter
  •      my hand written log (witch probably weight 5pounds itself   lol)
  •      a complete finished guide including all the PDF I have produced for the assignment my tutor report and my feedback as a quick look at reference
  •      all the pictures from the assignments and the corrections printed on 8×12 mate professional paper
  •      my 15 best photographs professionally framed with a 3 inch hard white passe-partout
  •      a digital version of the assignment and photograph on a DVD including a direct link to this blog
  •      my reference book where I hand wrote all my impressions about books that I have read, photographer that I have analyzed etc…
  • and of course the contain list


I feel pretty confident at this point as I know I gave my very best and my tutor was very satisfied. I have done this course in a record time but don’t be mistaken … I have worked an average of 12hrs a day, 6 days/ weeks. (it’s 02:36am in bangkok right now ! )


I’m also starting Digital Photographic Practice and People And Place.

I added the link in the left hand side of my board for you if you wish to keep following me 😀


I’ll be back to you in few month with my result.

I wish you the best


Melanie Frigon (Mali)

Assignment 5 – Applying the techniques of illustration and narrative – self assessment



Here are my self assessment and comments from this final assignment of The Art Of Photography. To start off, I want to mention that I took these shot on 5 differents days to get a maximum of different shot and there is two helicopter ACN and DCN ( immatriculation under the nose, on top of the engine compartiment and in the cockpit). The tricky part of these photoshoots was that they were actually working and that I didn’t want to be a problem or disturbe anyone so I kind of blend a part from the action.

My physical condition got worse between the 2nd and 3rd day of the shooting witch make the rest of the shooting very hard for me having to shoot from a stationary spot.

An effect that I want to mention and you may see is the heat and gaz coming from the engine (even many minutes after the engines has stopped). That heat can strangely blur the rear of the aircraft and meters around it.

1st day: ground run with ACN (no flight, engine running with rotor turning, maintenance procedure)

2nd day: two helicopters, DCN and ACN in flight from Chang Mai to Bangkok (6hrs) – VIP. So I arrived one hour early to capture the two helicopters in formation coming back. David was in DCN.

3rd day: Studio shooting

4th day: Departure with ACN from Bangkok to the roof of the Peninsula Hotel in Bangkok to Hua Hin in the south (3hrs) – VVIP. This shooting occur after that my condition got worse. I had to planned in advance as I couldn’t really move to get the shots. I place myself in a position to concentrate the shooting for the take-off and the trajectory they would go to get a max of angle comparing with the picture I had already.

5th day: At the office

Helicopter blow a lots of wind and by that it mean grass and sand. I used a 4×4 ND filter to protect my lens and I had to remove some detritus all around some of the photographs from the wind blast. Believe me, my equipments went for a good cleaning after these shot were done.



f/4.5 – ISO100 – 1/200 sec – 70mm (70-200mm)

To create the cover of the magazine I choose this picture from the 2nd day that I slightly modified so it would take the whole space in a portrait frame without losing of the actual shot. I extend the sky first and create the bottom using the stamp tool. David didn’t pose for this shot, he was actually coming back from a long 6 hours flight and I was able to capture the moment.


f/11 – ISO125 – 1/250sec – 80mm (18-105mm)

The picture I used in the index has been taken on the 4th day. I did an other light modification for the magazine purpose; removing the electric wire in the bottom left corner. The wire in my opinion was giving too much information about the altitude of the helicopter. I wanted to keep this information unknown by the viewer.

f/7.1 - ISO160 - 1/80sec - 34mm (18-105mm) SoftBox and white reflector

f/7.1 – ISO160 – 1/80sec – 34mm (18-105mm) Softbox and white reflector

For the introduction of David, I decided to use the lighting techniques recently learned. This is my very first portrait on a living model witch I think is a pretty good first attempt. I placed the softbox high in the front left of David and set a white reflector in the opposite site. Unfortunately I couldn’t use my 35mm or 50mm for this shot as I couldn’t move much. I was stationed sit on a table to be at the same high than my subject and used a variable focal length lens to do the shooting.


f/13 – ISO800 – 1/60 – 70mm (70-200mm)

I used a close shot from the cockpit to introduce to flying portion of the instruction in day one. The hardest part here was that helicopters are made so no light can interfere with the clear view of the panel. Because I wanted to have the gauge readable I had to use a great depth of field. An other reason for me to increase the ISO instead of the shutter speed was because I was shooting without tripod.  The reason why I took the picture from this angle is because this aircraft is completely close between the client and the pilot, leaving no space unless using a very wide angle lens.


f/4.5 -ISO160 – 1/15sec – 40mm (18-105mm) Flash bouncing on the sealing

This picture was took the last day when I reworked my assignment. This picture illustrate the complex work that need to be done in the theory of flight. With the help of David, we set a table full of accessories to recreate the first course and the learning pressure before the exam. We tried a lots of view points but the composition of this one was much better than all the other one shoot from the front, side and back. I also felt it was important to blur the document to keep the main subject in first plan.


f/5.6 – ISO100 – 1/160 – 135mm (70-200mm)

I took this picture on the second day. For the purpose of the magazine I extend the bottom of the frame so it take the whole page and I can write on it. I love this shot because David is very apparent in the cockpit. They were about to landed so the wind blast was very very bad !!! I passed a good hour only on this shot to remove all the grass and dirt from the picture. The text surrounding this image is about how to find work and I concluded the page with a direct link to this photographs.


f/14 – ISO125 – 1/160sec – 105mm (18-105mm)

This is a shot that I reconsidered using after the comment of one of my blog follower 🙂 It’s been shot during the 4th session so I was stuck on my chair for the whole shooting. I had to crop the image because I was already using the maximum of my focal length and couldn’t get closer. Although I was not expecting a shot like this, I think I captured a good moment when both pilot were discussing about the next flight. I just wish I could have increase the shutter speed a little bit to have a sharper image.


f/16 – ISO125 – 1/125 – 105mm (18-105mm)

From the same shooting (4th) I captured the ground crew in middle of their work while the helicopter is running very close of where they were. Because I was sitted durring the whole shooting it give a nice view of the worker and the helicopter.


f/4.5 – ISO100 – 1/250sec – 70mm (70-200mm)

This picture has been taken during the second day, when the client (in this case the flight manager an his wife) were coming back from flying with DCN. It was a two helicopters flight witch allow me more shot like this one where the “client” are walking thru the helicopter, when in fact they are walking thru the building (can be seen in the next picture).


f/10 – ISO100 – 1/320sec – 50mm (50mm f/1.4)

This is the picture of both helicopter still running after the two helicopters flight during day 2. They open the door as soon they touch the ground to aerated the aircraft. I like the composition, the two helicopters (rare to see them both outside the hangar even rarer to see them flying together), the wind indicator and logo of Eurocopter well in sight. Especially for this shot I had my 50mm ready. I knew when I planned for this shot that 70mm would be too tight so I had my 50mm in my belt.


f/10 – ISO100 – 1/200sec – 70mm (70-200mm)

This shot has also been taken at their arrival from Chang Mai in the shooting day two. I think that this symmetry  shot goes well with the conclusion of the interview talking about keeping the door open for new training 🙂

f/14 - ISO125 - 1/160sec - 52sec (18-105mm)

f/14 – ISO125 – 1/160sec – 52sec (18-105mm)

I wanted to add an other shot of my husband with the helicopter to support the last words of “What I did”. I took this one on the fourth day just before they leave in the sky.

Assignment 5 – Applying the techniques of illustration and narrative (modified before sending to tutor)


Here I have done few modifications, corrections and adjustments. 
Basically I have done some lights modifications to the text so it can reflect better the photographs. Not as a biography but more as a informative document for those who may one day, become a pilot. I added two pictures where my husband was figuring and I change one that didn’t really fit with the text and new concept. Two of these new pictures were taken during the few day I went at the office and the other one ( the studying shot ) is a new one we took today.

I want to say a big thanks to my grand-father and Eddy for their help and opinions. It’s really helpful to get different points of views. I’m living in this aviation environnement for quite a while now ( about 13 years when I joined the air cadet !!) and I see the helicopter from the point of view of the aircraft technician that I was back in my days in the military.

The first mistake that I have done while shooting these set of images was shooting from my hart (witch is not a bad thing) but really from a passionate to an other passionate in a real helicopter magazine concept. We have few of these magazine at home and true helicopter lover want to see the machine! Not the lucky dude behind the stick hahaha.

So that is what Eddy make me realize. From the point of view of my actual reader; my blog follower, my tutor and the assessors, it is not the detail of the cutter pin who’s securing that flex rod of that amazingly assembled fenestron (this type of tail rotor) that they will see … For the most of them it’s just a fan.

Than I realized how important it is to adjust your work for the viewer interpretation.

page1 page2 page3 page4 page5 page6


Assignment 5 – Applying the techniques of illustration and narrative

For this last assignment we were ask to produce 6 to 12 photographs to illustrate a story for a magazine including the cover. We had to write a a caption to link the picture in the same way a magazine would do.

It was specified to used some techniques of illustration for the cover and the rest should be more of a narrative pictures essay. The pictures are there to illustrate the main body of the story. Also a narrative must contain the elements of time, hours, days, weeks, years …

Here are the pages of the magazine where I suggested my photographs.

page1 page2 page3 page4 page5 page6

Exercise 5.5 – Rain

( 1 photograph )

Think about a magazine cover about rain. Produce one single, strong and attracting photograph that leave no one in doubt.

Ouch… ok I’m usually a very creative person but I’m not god … It didn’t rain for months now…. So I must found a way to get rain !

I have to say that the whole family really enjoy this exercise !

I dressed up my son with his rain jacket and pants. Put him his big yellow boots and he decide to bring his Golf bag. Love the idea !

My husband was holding a hose while my son was running under the water. My little 2yrs old boy really enjoyed it 🙂

It was an obvious choice for me that I need to shoot black and white as the sun was very strong as always. The clouds are very rare these days. So I decided to shot black and white.

I took about 20 pictures during the whole shooting but this one is really my favorite one. The picture really shows a lot of attitude. I have to say that this is my favorite photograph for the entire course! Ironically it is the last one.

I’m going to play whatever ….

f/4.5 - ISO 100 - 1/200 sec

f/4.5 – ISO 100 – 1/200 sec