I noticed this house on my way down to the shops. It’s just around the corner from where my Grandparents used to live. They’re buried just up the road in St Johns Church. I took a special trip to get this image, I just had to capture it for my archive. What was Halloween when we were kids has been hijacked by commercialism slowly but surely and is now ‘Trick or Treat’. It still is known as Halloween but you don’t hear any kids saying to their parents ” can we just stop in and see if we can get apples out of a barrel of water with our hands behind our backs, please oh can we Pa while Mom rustles us up some toffee apples and hot buttered muffins?”. Trick or Treat was brought over from America by, I would believe, Charlie Brown and Peanuts. I blame them. The idea that if you don’t give us some sweets we’ll play a trick on you. In the case of a neighbour up the road it was their car tyres getting slashed. Little old ladies up and down the country spend the night in fear that they’re going to open the door to a bag of flour or broken egg. Despite us barricading our front door some kids still didn’t get it that we weren’t playing, knocked on the door and sent the dog bonkers. I heard on the parents saying “I don’t think they want it”. I wouldn’t mind so much but about four years ago I went out to document the estates activities with my camera and some parent took offence and phoned the police. Ten minutes later there’s three police cars turned up blue lights flashing questioning why I was out photographing children. “I’m not” I told them, “I’m a photographer and I’m documenting Halloween night per se, I do a lot of social documentary stuff, it’s what I do”. The policemen knew that I wasn’t breaking the law so told me ” well someone phoned us up to report someone photographing children, it was probably a curtain twitcher”. The irony of this of course that photography out in the street i.e. in the public domain is not illegal but ‘Extortion’ i.e. ‘demanding goods or money with menaces’ is illegal.
Here’s another image ( above ) I keep coming back to. I just saw him in front of me, lifted the camera up to my eyes and made the image. Chesterfield High St is now pedestrian only but I can remember as a kid cars and buses travelling down this road. Further back beyond my memory were trams and further back still were horses and carts. Sometimes I’d love to travel back in time to see how things really were.
News just out is a new publication from Cafe Royal Books of Chris Killip work from 1982. Killip’s book In Flagrante is much sought after and I’d love a copy.
14cm x 20cm
Edition of 500
Someone’s been working hard. There’s a ‘dynamic list’ of street photographers on Wikipedia.
Here’s a Link https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_street_photographers I’m not on it. If I were I’d be sat between Ken Grant and Sid Grossman, one living and one dead. I’m not in the List of 50 Greatest Street Photographers either on Complex.com website. I really must try harder.
In the meantime here’s a photo I took in Brasil of a bloke pissing up against a wall.
I’ve noticed some of my blog posts now come with adverts. I don’t endorse any of these products but I’m guessing it’s the price I’m paying for this free blog writing facility here on WordPress ? Such is life. I’m also guessing that my blog is now sufficiently popular at 602 subscribers to warrant such advert attention. I’m flattered kind of.
That’s not me in the image above by the way. This bloke was capturing the sea so I took the opportunity myself. He didn’t mind although I’m not sure he fully understood my approach. He had a standard digital camera with a neutral density graduated filter on. Not my approach but hey it’s a broad church this photography lark. I very often find photographers a bit reticent to talk, engage in conversation. They can be a bizarre bunch can photographers.
My main problem with shooting seascapes is getting the horizon dead straight. I know you can straighten in the edit but for me the challenge is to get it right in the camera and negate the need for cropping. If it isn’t straight it tends to get deleted. The Fuji X Pro with the standard lens I find is easier than the Nikon D300 with zoom lens I find but it still takes practice and concentration.
The wife has discovered the joys of mobile phone photography while on our holidays. We were sat in the caravan listening to the rain and looking at her images from that day and doing some impromptu editing although she didn’t realise it. Two very similar images of the dog on the beach and it came down to the angle of the dog’s tail. Whether the one with the tail pointing up was better than the one with it pointing down. Yes it was that finite ! In my opinion the one with the tail angled upwards was the better, she turns to me and says “is this what you spend hours upstairs doing on your computer?”. I think she’d finally arrived at a point of understanding with my images.
That great English Institution the Pub has been going through some difficult times these past forty years.