Road to wherever



Players perform the winning play "A Concrete Jungle with Wild Cars"
Players perform the winning play “A Concrete Jungle with Wild Cars”

Actually pretty quiet from me on the blog front for a few days – why? Well i have been working on a photo shoot for a client covering a playwright competition at the Unicorn Theatre in London. I’m privileged enough to work for them a lot, and they’re really good people – Which is great. The winning play “A concrete Jungle Full of Cars” as shown above was bout three siblings who move from Sierra Leone to London at the time of the civil war. Expressing the culture shock with humour, it also describes some of the issues surrounding civil war with great sensitivity.

Reading from the runner up plays
Reading from the runner up plays

Theatre is though – a challenge of low lighting thats can suddenly shift, the speed of the actors, getting everything right for a good pictures. Nonetheless I bring you a couple of shots I have passed on to my clients. I really enjoy this work – Theatre has a buzz about it…

Children react to a Shakespeare Workshop on the power of words. It was actually electric, the children hung on the tutors words - and repeat after him exploding into life.
Children react to a Shakespeare Workshop on the power of words. It was actually electric, the children hung on the tutors words – and repeat after him exploding into life.

Online Photography Magazines

Hello, just a quick update on some fantastic resources today. I have collected a bunch of online photography magazines web addresses when on my masters, however I also have just been given a load more by the amazing Do note they will have a photojournalism bias, as that what I studied!

These are online publishers only. If anyone has anymore to add please feel free in the comments. (my favourite)

…Everything was moving – Closes 13th Jan

A lot of exhibitions have points of interest but leave me feeling a little short-changed. I often dont realise this at the time, but occasionally I see something truly inspiring.

Bruce Dickinson – Along The Selma March / Selma Alabama 1965

The idea behind Everything Was Moving at the Barbican, London, is to collate the work of Independent photographers who were working in the 1960’s and 1970’s, each as a show within a show. Each collection also represents social change, or a perspective of the time. Twelve photographers have been chosen;

David Goldblatt, South Africa with Ernest ColeWilliam Eggleston views of Americas South sharply contrast with those of Bruce Davidson which cover the civil rights movement. (these last two really did it for me).

Its a brief post, and excuse the rushed links to the others: Graciela Iturbide, Boris Mikhailov, Shomei Tomatsu (post nuclear Japan and subsequent Americanization), Larry Burrows (good link), Li Zhensheng, Malick Sidibe, Raghubir Singh and Sigmar Polke.

True, theres a lot going on, and the exhibition has received criticism for that. It’s boldly curated to describe the period, and the way it illustrates the period of change within different cultures is impressive, as is as the range in styles of photography. It’s also easy to pick and chose what appeals to your sensibilites and take that with you. If you’re interested in photo essays, documentary  its a must. Impressive!


In other news I had a momentary cigarette lapse after two months, the day before new year!

I’m being good again but it sucks… these two will explain, though you’ll have to skip to 1 min in for the singing.

EXHIBITION REVIEW : Image credited Bruce Dickinson

Photostory – Guardian Masterclass

Anastasia Taylor Lind and Sebastian Meyer held a ‘Photographic Storytelling Masterclass’ at The Guardian Building last Friday.

Keen to improve my practice I attended, despite the particularly high price tag of £39. However the Q&A aspect of it did provide value as it was entirely open. There were a whole lot of photographers there keen to ask questions about everything, from the Kit these photographers used to questions about travelling abroad for projects such as using fixers, networking and access.

For my benefit, as much as that of my subscribers, my notes are attached here, they would otherwise become more rubbish in my room. Before reading them its important to highlight that loads of the questions asked – and some of the responses i have heard from amny sources – so i’m not going to write everything! Anyway here goes:

Sebastian Meyer:

Background: American. Self taught – interned at Magnum. NY based. Worked on a paper in Manchester – did his first project in his spare time on Manchester canals.

He uses the journalist ‘standard’:  “Who, what (subject), Where (location), When (time), Why (the hard part). Says to “Ask yourself ‘why am I doing this?’ and affirm the answer to yourself all the time”. SM also states that the devil (or God if you prefer) IS indeed in the detail. Using small elements to suggest whats going on is often as or more effective than being explicit. (see the condoms in Manchester Canals Series).

On access to street (relating to questions to all projects – Manchester Canal. Addiction in London, Libya):

  • GIVE your subjects prints if they want them, encourage people to BE subjects in your photos
  • Be direct – “Can i take your photo” “I want to take your picture”
  • Take your time with people, get to know the moment  you want, invest in people – let your subject(s) relax.
  • “Remember what I said about details”
  • Dont hide your camera – show people why you’re there.
  • Be patient
  • Mix people, architecture and objects for a rounded story
  • Don’t be po faced – keep your sense of humour (‘soapy tit wank’ graffiti picture)
  • Relating to above: Show the breadth of emotion: Humour / Sadness / Violence / horror / relationships etc
  • A benefit of using a film camera is that people can’t see the image held in a camera on a screen. Including police if you’re photographing drug users.

SM was asked about taking beautiful pictures of terrible things. He responds instantly “Would you have me take a terrible picture?”.

Anastasia Taylor Lind:

Background: BA & Later an MA – won Guardian Award for this image. Starting her career – uses funding awards to start projects. Mostly Med format Bronica and now Hassleblad. Represented by VII after entering a mentoring program with them. Says only other mentoring program like this she knows of is with Getty.

ATL says she never uses release froms ever. (Does not do commercial?). Paraphrasing ATL: “The subjects verbal release is enough and obvious because of the type of portraits i do”.

  • Use a shooting list: Her recent marriage project needed: Marriage, Maternity, Birth Children growing up all represented
  • Research extensively (the larger part of her work) – refer to SM “what am i trying to say?
  • Says she can now recognise her style when shooting instead of just when editing.
  • Like the very still effect Med Format has. Also used 5D (I?)

Recently Seen Exhibitions:

Photographers Galley: Tom Wood – Men and Women
ood collection of reportage / street / street portrait – Seperated by gender. Watch how he handles men and women differently in his images – I wonder if he realised at the time or after. I loved this – and its free

National Portrait Gallery: Taylor Wessing Prize
Great to see ex-classmate Clare Smarts picture from her Bosnian Series exhibited! 🙂 Worth the £2 entry

Roxy – Borough High street – Portrait Salon
As organised by the very informed Carole Evans – one night event, of unseen Taylor Wessing entries.

Natural History Museum – Wildlife Photographer of the Year
Things like this are subject to some snobbery by some sections of the photographic community. But as ever the quality of images is amazing – expensive though!

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