Monday, February 28
Sunday, February 27
No Flowers, No Doves
When we entered the burning city
charred corpses greeted us.
A child's hand dangled from a scorched tree
and the twisted wreckage of a bus
mocked the stillness of the sky.
Gunner gagged, Ski scratched his head,
neither understanding why
he had to liberate the dead.
Saturday, February 26
Red! It's a strong colour. It says stop, and danger! It grabs your attention. At Heygate it certainly grabbed my attention.
This collection is about vibrancy in a place that is desserted. The Yellow Collection is about the signs of life we leave behind, and in a way The Red Collection is about that too, but these are the things we leave behind out of choice, the things that we avoid. The red tells us to not go in, to not try this at home and it tells us 'don't touch'. This is no longer home, it's sealed shut, marked for demolition and a jungle gym for the brave.
Red says "keep your distance".
Friday, February 25
Monday, February 21
Sunday, February 20
There's evidence of life all around this desserted estate, in fact there is evidence that some people may still actually live here, but I'm not brave enough to knock on the doors of squatters to enquire.
All I know of the former residents is what I can gather from looking at this shell, these honeycombs of empty rooms and hollow hallways. If it were an actual shell and I could hold Heygate against my ear, the way I would hold a conch and claim I could hear the ocean, then I think I would hear the vibrant sounds of a playground.
That's what grabbed me most, the vibrancy which still remains here. A joyful place, a playful and sunny place, a yellow place.
Friday, February 18
Monday, February 14
On Chinese New Year I played the 'Can I Take Your Photo' game and I got a few portraits of some cool people. I would love to tell you that I played by the rules for the whole day, but later that evening I started cheating and began to take shots of people without first asking permission and without the subject noticing.
I took one decent shot with this method and I present it here for your consideration. Comments and criticism welcome.
I've not taken a panoramic photo since my trip state side. My panormamic shots are my holiday photo shots, they're the kind of thing I do when I don't want to have to think about image making and I just want to capture, in it's enterity, everything I can see before me.
Visiting Greenwich the other day and watching the sun set over London evoked that feeling, the 'I've got to capture it all' feeling. Here are a couple of shots from that day.
Friday, February 11
Wednesday, February 9
The rules are as follows:
Approach a person and ask if you can take their photo if they allow you then snap away, if they say no then go away. You can not take a photo of a person you haven't asked permission from and you can not the same gender for a photo consecutively i.e. boy, girl, boy, girl.
Post all the good ones, ditch the crap ones.
Tuesday, February 8
Monday, February 7
Saturday, February 5
A month into 2011 and so far it's not living up to 2010...
'Hey, Eleven! You've got 11 more months to improve, you don't show any signs of improvement before then and we're through! 2012 is very athletic but a bit of a pessimist.'
Thursday, February 3
Tuesday, February 1
I was going to entitle this angry little blog entry 'Here's Your Cup of Tea, Choke On It!' but I find the idea of brewing a cup of tea to just allow it to sit and cool and then go un-sipped whilst I photograph it abhorrent. Instead I've delved into my back catalogue and found something that is quite representative of a path I'm commonly treading these days in my photography.
Why the invective in the vetoed title? Well unfortunately it was brought on by the behaviour and narrow mindedness of some of the members of Walthamstow & District Photo Society last night.
Last night's presentation was by Katherine Green, a Walthamstow artist who uses portrait photography to document subjects like the 1948 Olypians, the Save Walthamstow Cinema campaign and the closing of Walthamstow Dogs. A St. Martin's alumni she works on commissions such as her work with the National Portrait Gallery & BT entitled The Road to 2012, more personal projects like her portraits of Take Away restaurants and artistic collaborations like the Meet project.
I find her work fascinating and I hope you find the time to click at least a couple of the links above. Her talk and the photography she showed was interesting and her passion for her craft and the affinity with her subjects is apparent in varying degrees and to varying effect.
Unfortunately, seen through the very narrow lens of 'Amateur Photography' or more accurately 'Photographic Society Photography', Katherine's photos are a collage of things which will upset competition judges and are not worth exploring in any more depth than asking (several times) which camera was used to take the shot, what ISO, which shutter speed and whether flash was employed. Each question rang out the sound of 'the point' being missed by a large margin and then aimless words ricochetting around empty spaces behind blank eyes before falling with derision to the floor with to lay beside provoker's artistic ambition. Hold up... I mentioned I was angry, right?
With good reason I believe! One of the questions was "Have you ever submitted your photo into a competition and received feedback from a judge?". 'No' was the answer, and 'why would she?' was my thought, Katherine's work has value without the approval of a judge, no matter how accomplished that judge may be.
What that value is should have been obvious to all the people in that meeting room last night, not because they're photographers but because they're from Walthamstow, many of them born and bred and all with a deep pride in their community. It's reproachful that a Billy-Come-Lately like me feels he has to point out that it's the way Katherine's photos represent their community, and the fact that they do, that should be admired. That fact alone should encourage people to look past their strictly enforced laws of thirds or threes and toward the emotional or artistic heart of the work.
It may not be your cup of tea, but to be so dismissive just because something doesn't fit easily into a very narrow definition of what is good and worthy is vexing to the tune of eight paragraphs!
'So here's your cup of tea...'
- Señorita Monica
- ICA - Live Weekend
- Lest We Forget
- Heygate Colours [The Red Collection]
- H.M.S Westminster
- Iterative Process
- Heygate Colours [The Yellow Collection]
- Hey Jack...
- Things : Seen Between Deptford and Greenwich
- Sneaky | Shoot From The Hip
- Panoramas | Greenwich
- The 'Can I Take Your Photo' Game
- Fellow Shutterbug
- Inspiration. Collaboration
- Not A Metaphor
- STRICTLY ENFORCED
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- ► 2007 (56)