The Invisible Man



I asked this chap, “what’s all that about then?”. Dr Griffin is the Invisible Man in H G Wells’ classic tale of a man who manages to make himself, well invisible ! Not having read this classic tale I obviously didn’t know. I asked this chap buying an ice cream if I could make an image to which he replied, “No I’m invisible”. Make your mind up I thought to myself. Nevertheless I admired his intelligent humour although I suspect the joke would be lost on most people as it was on me.

Further along the High St I got chatting to this chap. I say chatting but actually he was talking to me.  He’s from Rumania and as friendly as he was I struggled to understand what he was telling me although I picked up the words ‘discrimination’, ‘IPCC’, ‘Chief of Police’ and one or two others of a similar vein. I smiled and told him it had been nice talking to him. It had. 



Deleting on demand

No sooner than I had taken this image than a woman came running up to me waving her id badge at me and demanding that I delete the image. I refused and explained to her that as we were in a public place she had no right to demand such an action. She threatened to phone the police on her mobile which she similarly waved about in the air. Not even the police can demand I delete images from my camera. That would be destroying potential evidence you see ? The young lady in the image was under her care as was a group of people with learning difficulties stood a few yards away. I didn’t know when I took the image that this young lady had learning difficulties or was with the nearby group.  I showed the carer the image to prove that the young lady’s identity was not compromised and as such there was not, and should not be a problem. Had I deleted the image and she had subsequently gone back to her office and contacted the police where would that have left me ? Explaining what I did with an image I no longer had ? What would have she done if I’d said It was a film camera and so I couldn’t just delete it ?

I can’t help it but I get irritated when people start trying to tell me what I can and can’t do when it comes to photography especially out on the street.

Human traces

You can walk past a certain spot a hundred times or more and then one day something catches your eye and you see an image to capture right in front of you. Sometimes in a morning I don’t know what mood I’m in until I open my mouth to speak. Sometimes I don’t know what mood I’m in until I lift my camera to my eye to make an image. The Mrs dropped me and the dog off at our local woods this morning and we walked back home. The light was clean after the early summer rain and the air was cool and breezy. I’m always looking for signs of human activity; marks, tracks and traces. It’s good to get away from the street and just walk alone in the woods. Time to think and contemplate.


This is a view of Chesterfield’s world famous Crooked Spire which has not been seen for decades.

Having lived  in the town all my life I think I’m qualified to say that this Spire is ingrained in our identity as Chesterfield folk. As we travel around the town we effectively revolve around it. It’s part of our psyche. Business’ and organisations fall over themselves to have a name with as closer proximity or derivation of the word ‘Spire’ as possible, Aspire being one of them. I’ll call this Blog Aspiration ! Geddit ? It’s good to aspire, to have aspirations.

A Russian Journal

John Steinbeck writing about Robert Capa – An extract from A Russian Journal with photographs by Robert Capa – published by Penguin

Capa has one curious quality. He will buy a lighter, but as soon as it runs out of fluid he puts it aside and never uses it again. The same is true of fountain-pens. When they run out of ink, he never fills them. A pencil he will use until the point breaks, and then it too is laid aside, and he will buy another pencil, but he will never sharpen a pencil. I flinted and filled his lighters, sharpened all his pencils, filled his pen, and got him generally ready to face the world again.”  

Robert Capa writing about John Steinbeck

My four cameras, used to wars and revolutions, are disgusted , and every time I click them something goes wrong. Also I have three Steinbecks instead of one.

My days are long and I begin with the morning Steinbeck”

USSR. Russia. Stalingrad. August 1947. – Robert Capa