New World Designs at Durham Photographic Society

From Durham PS President Peter Walton

Angy Ellis pulled off a scoop for Thursday night’s summer school at Durham Photographic Society!

Angy, a friend of Ian and Steve of New World Designs, who have created one of the most sophisticated Bullet Time Rigs on the planet, convinced them to come to our club and tell us about what they do. Sounds simple, that’s the normal format for visitors to our club, but this, was different!

Following a few hours to set up, members and guests were confronted with a ‘battery’ of SLR cameras on a rig that took up half of our hall as they walked through the door

Founded in 1998 and based in the Sunderland Software Centre, New World Designs is a creative agency focused on immersive media.

The night was fronted by Ian, with Steve working the tools in the background. Here is a local company, educated at a local University, who purchase their camera stock and software locally, who have a world- wide customer base and audience, now that is success!

Ian said ‘We were an early pioneer of commercial bullet time photography in the UK (Also known as TimeSlice or Time Slice), where “Matrix style” scenes separate time and movement to deliver truly unique visuals. Since then, we’ve developed the expertise, equipment and bespoke systems to become a global leader in the industry.

Today we have created one of the most sophisticated Bullet Time rigs on the planet, with precise trigger control, allowing us to control each camera independently, a software suite that allows the full automated process of the camera control, downloads, auto alignment, social media integration, and data capture to name a few. We have created custom wiring systems which allows for very fast and stable setups for both Experiential and Production setups.’

DPS are grateful that they found time in their busy world- wide work schedule to demonstrate their skills and chat about their development.

Peter Walton

Photos Angy Ellis: Ian (left) and Steve, & Ian and Peter Walton


DPS Memorial Summer School week 3: Bullet Time Boys – New World Designs

From Angy Ellis

There are not many out there … only a few in the whole wide world … but these local Bullet Time Boys came to our DPS Memorial Summer School last night and what a thrill it was. Never before have we seen anything like it. We weren’t sure how the night would work, or what they actually did, or how many members would turn up but last night was a full house. 54 members & guests attended filling the space in the hall around the curve of the Bullet Time Rig.

Ian the front man and Steve behind the computer started off the night explaining the story of how the concept came about. Working at London fashion week Ian was asked if it were possible to shoot a model as if she were on a turntable in 1998. He was the first photographer to try/use a virtual panoramic

It wasn’t perfect, it needed adjustments and more thought, so over the years it improved, until in 2003 he built his first Bullet Rig. This led to an amazing advertisement for Santander Bank capturing Rafael Nadal, the world class tennis player, in action mid-air – the first advertisement ever to use this Bullet Time rig concept.

Since then the likes of Land Rover, rock bands and blockbuster movies to name but a few have hired the lads and their the Bullet Time Rig to get the unique results. We watched the amazing footage of their advertising campaigns and saw how it had evolved into experiential marketing, where members of the public were involved in the advertising themselves, as recently used by Nike.

I think the capability of this set up was crystal clear when we were shown the images of 3 coloured water filled balloons shot and burst with an air rifle, the most outstanding footage complete with the bullet penetrating through,

The rig set up for us had 24 Canon SLR cameras bought in bulk (for serial number sequence so that calibration is more accurate) and locally sourced. They frequently use set ups of over 100 cameras. The members asked excellent questions throughout and we learned that the days of laborious & time consuming tasks such as adjusting each camera setting, taking the images from each memory card and stitching them together, were gone. Now it is a one touch adjustment on the computer using software that they have had developed themselves and exists nowhere else in the world.

The second half of the night, involving numerous members of the audience being photographed, was hilarious. I don’t think I can put into words what was happening in that final scene so get ready for the release of the footage. Before that jumping with brooms, leaping on Neil Maughan, throwing flowers and umbrellas in the air, using the Star Wars force – to name only a few.

What can I say but a huge thank you to the amazing New World Designs guys, Ian and Steve, for generously giving up their time and letting us into their very exciting world. And members – you did us proud with your enthusiastic involvement.

We made some amazing memories last night, let’s reflect & relive the fun that we all had by sharing with our family and friends and of course other photographers to encourage new membership – letting them know that the Durham Photographic Society have raised the bar for club nights.

Angy Ellis

See “Durham Photographic Society Fun Night” featured on the New World Designs website here

Learn more about New World Designs here

More pictures from the set-up and the night by Angy are in Members Galleries here

Photo: Angy Ellis


Summer School Club Night News: 17th August

DPS Memorial Summer School: Bullet Time Photography with New World Designs

It was a great night for sure! Ian and Steven Founders and Directors (along with Sean) of New World Designs and our own Angy Ellis put on a terrific evening of Bullet Time Photography. Firstly, a talk through of bullet time photography and clips of NWD past successes (fascinating on so many levels) followed by a 24 camera bullet time, all action photography session with eager audience members. Rarely has so much fun and interest been packed into one night!

Angy’s report to follow soon

DPS Annual Exhibition: Treasures of the North

The exhibition of 90 framed prints is on for the month of August in the North Aisle of Durham Cathedral. Members can steward the exhibition and enjoy meeting the public. Opening and service times are here

Members’ Image Appraisal Night

Led by Jed Wee September 21st. To take part, send two images to Ian Peele. Don’t miss out! More is here

Scott Kelby’s Worldwide Photo Walk

It’s October 7th and a Durham walk will be led by our own Tony Mearman. To find out more and sign up, go here

Northern Counties Countdown

15 days to closing date for entries into the 38th Northern Counties International Salon. More information and entry form is here

Next Digital Night

Wednesday 8th September, County Hall 6.30 pm. Details to follow

Assignment Durham Streets of BRASS

Follow up review meeting was Tuesday 8th August. Please also send your 8 digital images to David Forster asap. Meantime, the Assignment Frontline Sedgefield gallery is on the Assignments page here

Next Assignment will be in September, details to follow

2017 DPS Memorial Summer School

The schedule of practical photography nights during August:

3rd August: Portrait night with Peter Walton and Joanne Coates – indoor & outdoor set ups, models Sam, Victoria, Deb and Natasha, plus green screen on site

10th August: Light Painting with Sandra Hewitson and Chris Knaggs

17th August: Bullet Time Photography with New World Designs. Amazing! Check them out:

24th August: Still Life Photography – set-ups around the room

Start time 7.30 pm at St Oswald’s

Photography this Weekend

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe is in full swing until 28th August. Coming soon … Asylum Steam Punk Festival, Lincoln. Mike Boult’s Hot Dates page has links here

Next Meeting: Thursday 24th August

Durham PS Memorial Summer School – Still Life: practical photography night,

Pictured: scenes from DPS Summer School Bullet Time Photography Night

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The Beamish Trophy 2017 – Entry, Rules & conditions

From the NCPF

This will be the 7th year that the NCPF Beamish Trophy is being competed for by members. The competition will be for PDI, with the images having been only exposed during the period of 31st August, 2016 and 31st August, 2017 at Beamish Museum.

Each entrant can submit up to 2 PDI’s, The PDI file size is maximum 1400 (horizontal) and 1050 (vertical). The file name should be: “title-your name-your club”.

PDI’s should be emailed to duffyjoseph9(at) by no later than 15th October. 2017. Entries should be accompanied with a completed Entry Form Link

Pictured: LNER 985 by Joanne Gray, Highly Commended in the 2014 Beamish Trophy

                                                         LNER 985 Joanne Gray

DPS Memorial Summer School Preview 17th August

Bullet Time Photography with New World Designs:

From Angy Ellis

So … it’s almost time for the Bullet Rig Boys – isn’t it so exciting?

This is something completely different, a specialist side of photography that you may never get the chance to see again. Movies such as the Matrix, Zoolander 2, and the Oscars use it for the fashion 360 glam cam, and many advertisements you may have seen but wondered how it’s done.

The night will be a show & tell, and there will also be a unique opportunity to get involved.

It took me a lot of effort to get these guys so please support & make it worth their while by attending … bring a friend!

No cameras needed – just your eyes, ears and enthusiasm


Explore the New World Designs website to find out more – prepare to be astounded! After which you will not want to miss this very special DPS Memorial Summer School experience for sure!

Founded in 1998 and based in the North East of the UK, New World Designs is a creative agency focused on immersive media. We were an early pioneer of commercial bullet time photography in the UK, where “Matrix style” scenes separate time and movement to deliver truly unique visuals. Since then, we’ve developed the expertise, equipment and bespoke systems to become a global leader in the industry”

Members’ Image Appraisal Night Special: call for images

Thursday 21st September

Exciting news: the Members’ Night on 21st September will be an image appraisal night and the one and only, immensely talented, Jed Wee ARPS AFIAP will be hosting

Will members interested to take up this golden opportunity please send 1 or 2 of their best loved images, numbered in order of preference, direct to Ian Peel. The reason for denoting the order of preference is that there will probably only be time to appraise one per member. Each should be titled “Image Appraisal” adding the numbers 1 or 2 followed by any image title, and be normal PDI competition size

Programme Secretary Paul Ritchie writes, “The idea is that this is non-competitive way of evaluating images, and suggesting possible improvements to them, outside of the sometimes intimidating atmosphere of club competitions. It’s a friendlier forum by far”

Jed Wee is a top notch pro photographer, judge and lecturer renowned far and wide for his photography and technical skills and for his ability to impart knowledge link

Pictured: Kirkjufell by Jed Wee, and Jed Wee in Iceland by Ian Stafford

Kirkjufell. Jed Wee ARPS     Jed Wee in Iceland, Photo Ian Stafford

Scott Kelby’s Worldwide Photowalk 2017

From Tony Mearman LRPS CPAGB AFIAP

Now celebrating its 10th Anniversary, the Worldwide Photowalk (WWPW) will take place across the world on Saturday 7th October with 430 walks and 3,500 photographers already confirmed. There are 14 walks arranged for England, most of them in the South so having moved North just a year ago, I thought it would be a good idea to arrange a walk for photographers in the Durham area so decided to volunteer my services as a walk leader.

There’s no joining fee to register for the walk but a small donation towards the nominated charity, Springs of Hope Kenya Orphanage which feeds, houses and educates young orphans is appreciated.

The 90 minute walk will be organised to include some of the top photo locations around Durham, starting and ending in the Market Place and afterwards we will be having an informal get-together to compare notes and socialise with fellow walkers.

Several photo competitions will be open to photographers who submit images and the winners will receive photo related prizes from our sponsors. I’m hoping members from our team can use their skills and beautiful locations to produce great images and maybe winning a prize or two.

There is a limit of only 50 photographers for each walk so if you are interested, don’t delay and check out the WWPW website for more information and a list of prizes.

The Durham walk is open to the general public and not just for DPS members so please register if you wish to secure a place:

Once on the website, click on ‘Find a walk’

In the text box enter Durham UK and click ‘Search map’

On the map click on the red push pin and in the text box click ‘Durham City, England’

Click ‘Join Walk’ under the Leader’s photo

Or click on the image

Tony Mearman


e-news from the PAGB Issue 189: Masters of Print, Warwick Special & more

Issue 189 has the latest on the new Masters of Print competition (5 prints per entrant, 3 sections, 20 big prizes (!), 10 medals, only £10 to enter – it’s a must for DPS members!), the Photography News Club of the Year Final and more (including an ad for Awagami inkjet paper that aims to retain the subtle, tactile texture of traditional Japanese Washi paper) and it’s all here

Issue 189 Extra – is a Warwick Special – all the results from the Inter-Club PDI Championship, including Durham PS and Keswick PS representing the NCPF (two of the 38 clubs in the final), all the winning entry pictures and all the individual award winning pictures here

DPS External Competitions Secretary Tony Mearman’s report on the Warwick final is in Articles on this website here

NB The best way to receive FREE e-news is by email. Easily done by registering at


Pictured: Physical Graffiti 2 from the Iris Trophy 2017 winning entry by Stephen Bell CPAGB

                                                        Physical Graffiti 2 Stephen Bell CPAGB. 1st, Iris Trophy

DPS Memorial Summer School Week 2 was a huge success as we ‘Painted with Light’

From Angy Ellis

The extremely talented duo Sandra Hewitson & Chris Knaggs shared their vast knowledge on light painting as they delivered an excellent tutorial night for our members.

First we had to have the cameras ready for action: we were instructed on how to turn off the ‘Long Exposure Noise Reduction’, advised to choose a wide lens and turn off the lens vibration reduction. We were in Manual setting & Bulb mode as the exposures would be over 30 seconds, ISO was set between 200-400 however this was adjusted to suit throughout the night.

Once we had the cameras ready we were instructed to focus on Sandra or Chris before the lights were turned off. They would then create a light picture before our very eyes. We had no idea beforehand what it would be and this added to the anticipation and excitement of it all.

All focused, Sandra would then shout “lights out” it was so dark and very strange as we all stood very still, Sandra then instructed us to “start shooting”. We had to keep the shutter open for however long it took them to create a masterpiece, some were as short as 40 seconds others well over a minute. When she said “stop” the shutters were closed and we waited – then Wow! You could hear the satisfied gasps, fantastic responses, giggles and sounds of enjoyment as the light picture was revealed on the backs of cameras. Honestly it was so much fun.

Sandra and Chris had many light painting gadgets to use but they stressed that nothing needed to be expensive. They brought along LED umbrellas (without the umbrella), many coloured torches, carved plastic shapes for the ends and one was a feather. Key rings with lights, battery operated lengths of illuminating wire that made a great mist, laser pens and a huge amount of imagination. However the key to using all these accessories was to have a good ‘mind’s eye’, the ability to visualise the image as it is drawn so that there was no doubt as to what it was. It reminded me of ‘joining the dots’ as a kid but you had to make your own dots in your head first before starting to light paint – it’s not easy but fun to try.

Sandra shared with us that she used the house with all the lights off to practice, an idea we can all try now that we have the basic knowledge of how to paint with light. Chris said winter is best for this activity outside because it gets dark earlier. Apparently our many local castles can be enhanced with some quality light painting so I feel a DPS night out later in the year may be on the cards.

As the night progressed members were encouraged to get involved, Elizabeth Proud started with her painting of an orb, Liz Mearman stood still while she was given a skirt and bikini top as did David Hickman. Julie Ferry was given a light landscape of a house, tree and flowers enthusiastically painted by Neil Maughan and Dave Murrell and our DPS fairy was given her wings by Sandra as Chris surrounded her in green mist.

We finished with a quick ‘how to’ for ‘wire wool spinning’ by Chris – amazingly all that is needed is a kitchen whisk attached to a dog lead and some very fine grade wire wool. It’s advisable to wear long sleeves and a hoody but that’s all you need and you are good to go.

Well, what a night, thank you to all the members and friends who attended. As for Sandra and Chris, we thank them so much for their good humour, time and effort.

Next week it’s the bullet rig boys – please support this amazing visit from Ian & Steven as it will never happen again. Please let’s show our appreciation by attending, no camera needed but you can get involved on the night.


Photos: Angy Ellis

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