All posts tagged: opinion

Differing opinions.

For me, a satisfying image has shapes and layers. I was at the SteamPunk festival in Lincoln on Saturday. This image was from the lower half of the city (where there were fewer SteamPunk attendees). I was drawn by the incongruous hat of the SteamPunker – a white military helmet surmounted and enclosed by an Octopus. I use that as the front layer and slightly out of focus, with shoppers passing in the next layer.  The layer which first attracted me contains the Irish Dance Busker making eye contact with the delighted little girl.  Finally, in the last layer of interest is the shop attendant peering out of the window. I find this image satisfying even though it’s far from perfect containing as it does elements others may believe detract from the image. As you maybe aware, my images are just for me so you may not agree. That’s OK. That’s what makes this art form so interesting – alternative views of the same thing and differing opinions.

A visit to the Barbican in the City of London.

I don’t know about you, but I thought the Barbican in London was simply an arts centre – “simply an Arts centre” there’s an understatement for a start. Just how wrong can you be? My wife, Sue, knowing I like Brutalist architecture bought me a ticket for a guided architectural tour of the ‘complex’ and complex it is. Not only is it an arts centre – by the way, this section of the development was finalised and built last – but it is a housing project comprising around 2000 flats.  First, throw away all preconceptions of what a ‘housing project’ of this size would look like. The project was conceived in the late ’50s by architects, Chamberlin, Powell and Bon. They planned and delivered a high quality, wonderfully detailed living space, and due to the management of the terms of the letting or sale of the units, it has remained so ever since. Strict conditions apply regarding what the occupants can and cannot do –  but I’m getting in front of myself. If I may backtrack; The area …

Do we stay or do we go?

If, like me, you are sick to the back teeth of hearing the word Brexit I’m afraid this piece is not going to help much. But, but, but – yes. it’s worth the repetition – if we relent in our efforts to push back, then we can blame nobody but ourselves, for not trying to reverse what has transpired to be an uninformed, corrupted and consequently, bad decision. One million of us joined together in London yesterday to protest against what we see as madness. I owe it to my grandchildren to try to protect their future. It would be hard to look them in the eye and say I did nothing. That’s enough of the ‘why’ of it. Here are some pictures of how the day panned out from the people walking through London before the march until my crocky old bones could literally stand no longer a few hours later. I didn’t get to the end. Sorry. As to whether we should stay or go… you have your own opinion – and long may that …

Set yourself free from the megapixel race.

The megapixel race, with its pursuit of sharpness, seems unending. Is this really important or is it just a callous marketing ploy used to make the last iteration of whizzy cameras redundant? Here’s an interesting fact… According to Thorsten von Overgaard, the Danish writer and photographer; – “When we were using film ( I assume here he is talking about 35mm film) those images equalled around 18-20 Megapixels.”   And I ask – didn’t those images set our perception of “Sharp”? – Where does that leave us with modern digital cameras being 24, 37 and 100 Mega Pixels? – Thorsten argues those extra pixels are simply “overkill”  because as he puts it  “What are we going to do with that level of sharpness – or detail might be a better expression”? Making a print will not evidence those extra pixels. Thorsten argues the only benefit of such pixel size is when you want to use just a portion of the image. He closes his argument with the simple statement of… “If it looks sharp, it is.” I …

Protesting in the torrential rain over low pension increases. Jerez de la Frontera

Going backward​.

I have been taking pictures since I was around 10 years old when I had a Brownie 127 for a birthday. That’s over 60 years ago. Even back then, with this basic camera, I had to have the clip on close up lens adapter. None of those pictures still exist, my mother had a penchant for slinging stuff out you see. All of my clockwork Hornby trains, track, signal boxes etc went the same way. But that’s another story. After a pretty long hiatus, I took up photography again in my early 20’s when I bought a German single lens reflex camera. And so it went on until the present day. One camera after another, foolishly thinking the camera was what produced the picture. Yes, it made the image but the picture is made in the head. Many years, many cameras and many thousands of £’s later I had full Nikon digital professional cameras – yes 2, a range of lenses, flashguns etc. You name it I had it. And then I woke up. I …

The Usher Gallery, Part of the Collection.

Exhibition Review: It’s art but is it photography?

New Photographic works. The Usher Gallery, Part of The Collection, Danes Terrace, Lincoln. LN2 1LP. T:01522-550965 W: thecollectionmuseum.com Opening hours: See website. This exhibition by James E Smith comprises 2 parts. First is Call to Action, a series of black and white photographs from his time in Australia. The images are simply hung. Second is Half the Battle is Knowing What Sells, a small book shown in the middle of the gallery. This second part of the exhibition is not covered in this review; though, in passing, it comprises e-mails received by Smith concerning briefs given for commercial advertising purposes. You can download the book here free under the creative commons license. Judge for yourself. I am from a commercial world and this poses some difficulties in the understanding of “art” per se. In a discussion with a  photographic artist recently (we were talking about an event I had attended the day before which included him and a group of other artists) I wrote:- “The terms of reference used by artists and those in commerce are …