Photovember #5

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Photovember #4

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Today, was all about puddle testing with the Chief Puddle Tester!

I don’t know what makes a good splashing puddle, but it seems that Marcus does. If its not good enough, he quickly moves on to a puddle that is. Or in this case, stream.

 

Photovember #2

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Just a quick update today – and I’m cutting it a bit close as well; yikes.

I’ve always enjoyed this style of photography, where you get right up close to something and snap it, so everyone else asks ‘What is it?’ and you get to feel a bit smug when you tell them the answer!

Photovember #1

For a quick introduction, Photovember is a challenge that has been put out on various social media platforms by Chris Frosin; a very talented photographer from the UK, who is one of the most cheerful and enthusiastic people ever. So when they presented the Photovember challenge (to take a photograph of your world everyday in November) I couldn’t resist the idea.

Though, looking back on it now, I feel a bit of a fraud. I’ve not picked any of my cameras in months and I think the last assessment I had of my photography hobby didn’t go down to well.

For the most part, I feel like photography is something that I need to ‘let go’ but something keeps drawing me back in, so I think this challenge will really help me sort out my thoughts on the hobby if nothing else.

So, photograph number 1

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A theme I always enjoyed (and was heavily discouraged at Uni) was macro photography, getting in really close to something to see how light and shadows play on them. I also wanted to take something a bit symbolic for my first photovember picture – a lock and chain – to show how I feel about photography these days. A little trapped and locked in?

This was taken with my Sony Cybershot – a decent enough compact camera, but I really prefer my Canon Eos d20 (even if it is old now) as I prefer photographing through the lens rather than on a screen; but beggars can’t be choosers!

I’ll try my best with the challenge and see if I can find a ‘style’ that suits me again or maybe just enjoy the challenge for what it is.

Either way, I hope you join in and have some fun with it all.

Heaton Park

I managed to get out with the camera today, after much deliberating over if I should or not. We managed to get to Heaton Park.

Honestly, it took me a bit to et back into the swing of it all – remembering all the functions of the camera and how it all worked, but I think I got the hang of it all in the end! It feels like it had been so long (which I think it had in all honestly, aside from taking a few dodgy photographs of Warhammer models)

Being even more honest, I found it all somewhat stressful in a way and I don’t know if I felt like I enjoyed the experience overall. Barley (See pictured dog above) was in a funny mood with other dogs today and I found that the focal range of my lenses wouldn’t allow me to get in close enough to some of the smaller birds that I wanted to photograph. On top of this there was a charity run on which made Heaton Park even busier than usual. Maybe I should try and find somewhere a bit more peaceful next time I go out with the camera, but that can be difficult in itself due to having Marcus’ pram with us.

I think, as with everything, I just need to get back into the swing of it all and keep at it. See how it goes and where the adventures take me.

Although, I do think it might be worth trying to go somewhere without an agitated dog! Even though I would feel guilty about going on a family walk without him.

Criticizing Photographs 


I’ve been putting some more thought into the idea of creating a photography critic blog lately. A part of this idea is digesting a book from back in the days when I was studying Contemporary Lens Media at The University of Lincoln; Criticizing Photographs by Terry Barrett. I always remember this book being a good and worthy while read, but never managing to get the full way through.

Seeing as I am well out of touch with everything photography the refresh on how to approach looking at a photograph has been well worth it so far, but thinking of it all from a blogging point of view I can see some pros and cons to the idea.

As the little grabby hand suggests, I don’t have much time to do much without being interrupted! So with already having two blogs to update and keep on top of, I don’t know if a third one will really work out. The idea of adding a photography section here is something that I’ve thought about as well, but this blog is confused enough as it is already! But at the same time, I don’t want to stop updating here because I am working on other blogs.

I’ve read many times over, to make a blog ‘successful’ it needs to have a dedicated focus. A single topic. I don’t mind so much that this blog doesn’t as it is more of a personal journal than anything else. 

Maybe I should write a couple of critiques, but them here and see how they go first. See if I actually enjoy writing them before launching into anything too serious? 

I have to get through the rest of Criticizing Photographs first! Let’s see if I am still inspired after that. If I can keep little hands off the book while I try and read. 

Victory Not Vengeance

dsc02487For Christmas this year, I was very lucky to have been brought two tickets to go and see a group I love very much. VNV Nation. They are a group that I have treasured for many years and for some personal reasons too. So, my sister and I trogged off to go and see them at Manchesters Student Union Bar for one of the most personal and heart warming gigs I have ever been too (Not that I have been to many gigs, but hey-ho)

The venue was rather small, which actually really helped the gig feel a lot more personal. We had a good place at the back of the venue where we could still see everything and let the music flow – neither of us are the type to want to be barged about at a gig, it’s all about the music. What really struck me was how sincere the ‘Thank you,’ sounded at the end of a song, and the personal compliments to the crowd. They all sounded absolutely genuine, not a hollow, arrogant sort of ‘Thanks’ that I seem to remember from other concerts.

I am used to gigs having support bands playing first. Here, there was no such thing. It was all VNV Nation all the way! From start, right up to kick-out time. It was absolutely amazing, the energy was just sublime, from both VNV and the crowd – I think I only stopped bouncing to run to the ladies room.

There was a real sense of belonging, a connection to other people at the gig, even though we were a little removed from the main assembly. And I admit, it brought a tear to my eye when I heard Illusion being sung. And they played all the ‘favourites’ as well. Which was wonderful to hear. Beloved. Homeward. Chrome. Electronaught. All the ones that I had doubts about them doing (Because they might be a bit old) So I was just stoked.

It was a humbling experience and I am so pleased to have been able to be a part of such a small gig. I apologise for my ‘crappy’ photos, but I was there to experience the music and atmosphere not stand behind my camera – which brings me to another wonderful point. VNV have no qualms about being photographed or filmed, as long as you don’t use a flash or get in someone else way. Both points are backed up regularly by Ronan (The singer) who sees it as his job to get you to enjoy the show, rather than feel stuck behind a screen. Another humbling aspect in my opinion.

What more can I say, other than thank you VNV Nation for shining your light on me.

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