All posts filed under: blog

The meaning behind ‘The Greenhouse’

Recently, I was musing on the relevance of images to each of us and how that changes from person to person. People see an image and it means different things to each person. The image  effects them. To some that effect is deep and meaningful, visceral even, and to others it’s trite and meaningless. I can’t account for that except it’s perhaps what allows us to “edit” the millions of images we see, into piles – important/trivial, like/dislike – and I have to say, in the main, that’s how my own editing works. Binary. On / off – like / dislike. Phil Cosker, a dear friend of mine, a photographer, writer and all round Renaissance Man, produced a set of images nearly 40 years ago. Recently he displayed them – printed very large – in a number of churchyards around Lincolnshire. Even more recently he has included them on his web site <<<HERE>>> under the title “Landscapes”. I was assisting Phil with his web site at the time and as I was uploading the images, …

The little cares that fretted me…

Out in the fields. Original by Elizabeth Barrett Browning. My apologies for the corruption. The little cares that fretted me I lost them yesterday, Among the fields above the sea, Among the winds at play, Among the lowing of the herds, The rustling of the trees, Among the singing of the birds, The humming of the bees. The foolish fears of what might happen. I cast them all away Among the clover-scented grass. Among the new-mown hay, Among the husking of the corn, Where drowsy poppies nod Where ill thoughts die and good are born— Out in the fields with the dog. Then the snarling farmer barks, “Get Off My Fucking Land” And breaks up the reverie. PDBarton May 2020

Immunology.

With all the talk about Covid-19 and immunology washing around I was surprised to find a family connection of sorts whilst carrying out some family research. Some of my forbears, on my grandfathers side, are from around the Berkeley area of Gloucestershire. So what, you may ask? The founding father of immunology, Edward Jenner, was from Berkeley and whilst researching my forbears I came upon the record above. It is the actual frontispiece  of the register of Baptisms, Marriages and Burials from the small town of Berkeley in Gloucestershire.  Many of my forebears are in these records. I don’t normally start at the very front, and I’m guessing not many others do either, but this time I wanted to see the full record. That’s where I discovered this note. For those of you who do not know, Edward Jenner was the local doctor/surgeon. He is credited with the popularisation of immunisation. You can see in this document a note dated 1795 by the curate, William Davies, to the effect… “ In the spring of the …

Book Review: An Inner Silence.

Book review Title: An Inner Silence: The Portraits of Henri Cartier-Bresson. Authors:  Forward by Agnes Sire. Introduction by Jean-Luc-Nancy. Publisher: Thames and Hudson. 181A High Holborn. London WC1V 7QX. ISBN: 0-500-54317-8. The book draws images from the  permanent holdings of the Collection of the Foundation Henri Cartier-Bresson. The book generously features 97 tritone reproductions of Cartier-Bresson’s works. “The true portrait, (is) one in which the subject represented is not caught in any action, and does not even show any expression that might detract from the person themselves…” …writes Agnes Sire the curator. That clear phrase captures the essence of Cartier-Bresson’s portraiture. There is a naturalness to the images together with a deceptive ease. The images are not contrived, neither does the sitter fill the frame. No, the subjects are generally in their own apartments, galleries, studios etc, which become part of the image; frames them if you like, and so becomes as much of the portrait as the sitter. I don’t know if the sitters were posed and directed. I suspect not. They may well …

A tale of coffee and a great postman.

 I have a confession to make. I’m addicted to coffee. For over 20 years I’ve owned a Gaggia Espresso maker. I got so much use out of the original it died and I bought a replacement. Even the new one ( 10 years old now)  was suffering from over use but I found a Gaggia service centre in Nottingham and a delightful engineer called Giacomo  picked up the machine and delivered it back to me as good as new. Yes, you can see my obsession can’t you. Don’t judge me too harshly. Some people smoke or drink. I do neither. Some play the horses or gamble. I don’t. No, my singular addiction is good coffee. This week I had a catastrophic upset (Yes, yes, I know. This may be insignificant and trivial to you, and in the current circumstances it probably is but…) when the handle on the coffee basket snapped off, making the machine unusable. It was my own fault. I had put it in the dishwasher for years and the corrosive effect on the …

Looking backwards

As the Covid-19 lockdown bites, the ability to get out of the house has been curtailed. Consequently, images from an unfettered past are seen from a new perspective. A couple of years ago I worked on a project photographing along the length of the Greenwich Meridian as it passes through Lincolnshire. I started just north of the Humber estuary. Though not strictly in Lincolnshire, the Meridian first hits land in this coastal part of Yorkshire before entering into Lincolnshire. Using a series of 42 images I describe the passage of this notional line across 75 miles of its journey. I took many more than the 42 images I’ll eventually use. I was helped considerably by Phil Cosker who spent time with me editing down the images to the curated 42 I shall be showing. But where to show them? With the Corona virus raging across the country galleries are closed. So what to do? A while back I produced an on-line gallery of sort, now removed, which was an attempt at showing the work virtually. At …

Working from home.

I’ve been asked by a couple of people to talk about how my 2 weeks self isolation have gone so far, what view I have on a further 12 weeks and what I am doing to handle the isolation. If this is of any use to you then pass it on, and, of course, if you have anything to add then please do. I’m going to start with a positive comment about negative people. I’m fully prepared for those who think they know what’s best for me and the population as a whole. I’m prepared for the slurs. Well, those who know me will not be at all surprised when I say to those people “Go forth and multiply”. I shall delete any such comments and I’ll positively block all of those types. OK. Let’s get on. Here’s the reasons why I’ve chosen to self isolate and will continue to do so. I’m 73. I’m a type 2 insulin dependant diabetic. I was diagnosed over 20 years ago. I have a couple of other health …

A new Project.

I’ve added a new project to the others in my portfolio. I’ve always been interested in shops. Not the modern glossy chains, but the old and quirky, or just the simply odd. Empty shops interest me too. I’m going to be sorting through my images this year to put up some pictures of shops and, of course, shooting new images in this genre too. To start off the project here’s a picture I shot today in Woodhall Spa, a small town, more a large village really, to the east of here towards the coast. Woodhall is famous for being the base for 617 Squadron (The Dam-busters) during the 39-45 war. In many ways it still wears those colours. As my mother would have said… “It’s a village which thinks the war is still on” It certainly does everyear when it stages a 40’s weekend. Anyway, I digress. Here’s an image of just one for the shops in the village. More to come over the year.. PDBarton Feb 2020