A behemoth visits the Haven Ports

Not so long back I photographed the Globe on her maiden voyage berthed at Felixstowe. By the time she left 2 and a half days later she was no longer the largest container ship in the world. She had been superceded by the Oscar. Oscar made her maiden voyage to Felixstowe today arriving at 1100. Tugs danced and fussed around her and gave her a traditional fire jet welcome.

It was a grim day for lighting and I decided to try my luck from Shotley. There was no one there. I could see many people on the beach at Landguard through my lens. I was a tad disappointed in that she was quite light in the water and not carrying anything like her capacity. I will try again overnight but these vessels have had a huge impact on how the docks of Ipswich, Harwich and Felixstowe operate.

A maiden entry to the port brings out the fire jets

A maiden entry to the port brings out the fire jets

The light was better the closer I was to Walton terminal. Landguard is several cables away.

The light was better the closer I was to Walton terminal. Landguard is several cables away.

Arriving at Felixstowe from Rotterdam

Arriving at Felixstowe from Rotterdam


Does Black and White introduce a degree of abstraction?

Original post November 2, 2014 By: Tom Owens

Debates abound over the use of black & white over colour photography. For me, I shoot both and when I am out shooting medium and large format I have the luxury of being able to drop on a different film magazine or use a different double dark slide that I have packed ready for the shoot, or indeed shoot on Fuji Instant using the adapter on both formats.

This scene was shot for my Edgelands project. A Toyo 45C monorail view camera was used and apart from the metering and thus the change of exposure, no other adjustments were made. There is of course a time difference on more than one plain as the colour image was made on Portra 160 and the B&W on HP5+.

Which of these two do you prefer? My exercise at the time was academic. The entire series is produced in colour but several of the B&W images made do convey a totally different look and feel


Dust removal post scan and curves, sharpening  etc have been applied. I do not normally add or remove data other than artefacts introduced during the many processes the processing goes through. Life is too short.

One result of this shoot at Freston was contracting ringworm from a burdock spur that lodged in my sock. It took some 5 months to heal.  One of the risks of planting tripods in undergrowth. The camera was approximately 8 feet off the ground for this shoot.

Here are a few more to consider.

Comments from original blog

Avril R Harris · December 4, 2014 Reply

Ilford Street works well in colour, probably better than in the b/w but it could be better seen as a print. I prefer the previous image in b/w it has more grit (sorry for the pun). I am prejudiced as I only work in black and white, using colour for holiday snaps.
I don’t really need to know about the equipment used nor the tweaking in the computer, I wouldn’t give details of how I print in the darkroom, the finished image is the test but I understand that a lot of you are really keen on the technical details.
The images I have seen so far I find really interesting, I think it is going to be a great project.

Tom Owens · December 4, 2014 Reply

Thanks Avril. This is an unashamed plug but as you work is mainly B&W please take a look at http://tomowens.openpoint.co.uk/galleries/arts-practice/land-and-seascapes/liverpool-echo/ . I have copies of images made by someone who lived in the area I photographed taken some 6 months after mine. They are in colour but lack the gravitas of mine in my opinion. I’m not sure I could make this series today as it was very much of its time. The kids in the picture give that away.
I post some technical information because I use a hybrid method of using analogue and digital processes to get to my outcomes. By using the internet to share we have to do some transformation but that is an end game. The Liverpool Echo series is all wrapped up ready to travel but takes up a huge amount of space as does my Edgelands project.
Ilford Street was shot this year on my return to the ‘triangle’ to try and reshoot from similar viewpoints – impossible. Pound a roll by the way. Ilford Street is not part of the ‘Docks’ project, just an exposure of other work I’m into.
I cannot make my mind up on the sugar beet image Both appeal to me in equal measure and represent much about our local rural economy.

Bob Farrer · December 4, 2014 Reply

B&W is abstract I think. I am not sure how useful it is to compare single images in this way, apart from its fun!
I prefer the colour images, although I can remember Newspapers when they were just B&W and grew up with many family snaps in B&W. I guess as a rule, I prefer colour. The colour of the bricks are more interesting than the tones of grey and the field shot does not have enough tonal contrast (on my screen at any rate) or texture to give the impact I want from B&W

For some types of image B&W is great. For me B&W comes with historical baggage which I feel I need to deal with if used in a modern project. (I never have, could never justify doing so) I like the idea of mixing film, digital, B&W, colour and other mediums such as sound, moving image, text and maybe screens and prints. In my experience people with a Fine Art background rather than a pure photographic one are likely to be more successful working in a multi-disciplinary way. Certainly don’t think I could pull that off, but I have seen some examples that have worked, although the only person that springs to mind is the late Tim Hetherington.