In her own words. One woman’s life, and what a lesson it is for us all. “I am not sure of my exact year of birth but I think I should be around 66 or 67 years old. I was born around here, near Dharamsala, and lost my mother as a child, I was raised by my stepmother. Later I was married at the age of 15. I lost my husband at the age of 24, to some unknown sickness due to stomach pain. I moved back to Dharamsala from my inlaws place after the death of my husband as I faced a lot of problems and was not wanted there. I sold off whatever little farmland I had and I bought a small piece of land and built a mud hut in Gamru village (quite close to Mona, the doll makers studio) as till I was 24 I could work on the farm but after my husbands death it became difficult to farm, tend to cattle and take care of the girls as I had …
Three Brutalist building in Birmingham. Two of which have gone. The first is the now-demolished Birmingham Central Reference Library designed by John Madin and constructed in 1974. It lasted 41 years before its recent destruction. The second is the signal box at New St Station (comprising 2 images), designed by Bicknell & Hamilton and W.R. Healey and completed in 1965. This is listed and so remains. The third is 103 Colmore Row, the Nat West Tower, as it was known. Designed by John Madin. It opened in 1975. It was demolished in 2015-16 and is to be replaced by another, taller tower.
Back in the late 1970’s, I would wander around my home city of Birmingham, camera in hand. At the time it was all Black-and-White work, self-developed and printed in a makeshift darkroom. I had different cameras to choose from, nothing exotic. I used twin lens reflex and 35mm. These images were from my 35mm camera probably on *400asa film hence the grain. *(I must check as I have the original negatives somewhere) The images below were from a sojourn to an impromptu fairground, many popped up like this around the city. This one appeared in Hay Mills, adjacent to the A45 near to Small Heath.
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.
I visited an exhibition of striking work by photographer Katie Hallam in the delightful, bijou Gallery at St Martin’s, in Lincoln yesterday. Katie is a degree qualified photographer. In her current work, she takes the structure of her initial pictures and re-works them to produce surprising and questioning images, turning them into strident artworks, full of energy and colour. The concept explores glitches – errors if you will; hence the title of the show – momentary aberrations of the norm, be those glitches natural or induced, in order to create ‘another worldliness’ in exploring and dividing what is captured from what is seen. The technique explores the manipulation of those glitches using alteration to the code producing those jpg digital files. The work dispels any doubt, if the is any, that photography is art*. The work is exciting and is well worth seeing. Sadly it closes on the 13th July 2019 but you can see her work on her web site here. https://www.thebeautifulerror.com The image above is part of one of Katie’s images, who, of course, …
An image made in July 2014 on the pier at Skegness, Lincolnshire. This image has been very popular over on my Twitter account. It shows a group of people occupying a bench at the end of the old (now truncated) pier as a storm rolls in from the North Sea over the offshore wind farm.
Shop window sign in the sun. Lincoln 2019.