Been Away Too Long…

In all sorts of ways and for all sorts of reasons my photography and associated tasks have taken a back seat – I have been prompted into action by both Tom, the happy Seagull and Martin, a fellow artist…

I tend to think of myself as an artist who uses photography rather than an outright photographer and of late have been suffering from a lack of ‘seeing’. Not that I have not been out with the camera, recce trips have featured in my itinerary searching out the Gipping Locks for winter image making when the foliage is less prominent and they can be seen…

At the moment the images I have been making tend to be in a square format and in pairs – diptychs? Well I don’t know, short series? Probably…

The first two are obviously waterside on the Ipswich Waterfront, fragments of what used to be…

The second pair are older images taken with my first digital SLR, a Nikon D70S, still have it, still a very good camera featuring as it does a CCD sensor rather than the ubiquitous CMOS in current favour. I still feel that the CCD is more sensitive but as it is more expensive to make has lost favour. Perched on a tripod in the passenger footwell of my departed ‘Bongo’ and using a remote to trigger long exposures whilst travelling on the M40…

I promise to make more regular contributions to our Blog along with Tom – watch this space!White Chain BTI Web

White Chain

 

Yellow Step BTI Web

Yellow Steps

 

Routes No2 Web

Routes 1

 

Routes No1 Web

Routes 2

Old buffers and old buffers

Yesterday, the vanguard of this eclectic shutter of photographers met in a cottage surrounded by armed men with dogs whilst we stuffed envelopes full of Contemporary Photography into many hundreds of envelopes. Such is the secrecy surrounding the workflow to get these august tomes out to paying members not!

No, indeed we were surrounded like the OK Corral by men and guns blasting birds out of the sky that had been grown specifically for the privileged few. Although I had my gear with me that would have enabled me to make some interesting images of this rural industry I knuckled down instead to the task of getting these envelopes stuffed.

It was the usual culprits, escapees from ‘Last of the Summer Wine’ plus the master of automotive photography – Chris Myhill – very much younger than us but very adept at sliding in these booklets. It must have been the years of sliding in 10×8 film into double dark slides. You never know when skills can be re-used.

It was good to Chris along apart from speeding up the process, we were able to talk through our group and individual projects and potential exhibitions in the early Summer/late Spring of 2018. Having professional photographers in this group brings a whole lifetime of experience to bear.

As with the television series the conversation rambled around all sorts of topics from Melania reminding me of Lady Penelope and musing on where Ralph got his ideas from to whether the outfit was made of neoprene or indeed Kevlar to old buffers in railway stations and rusting Capris.

Railway buffers with watering cans

 

There is no holding us back when we get going. Great Granddad also gave us a lesson in the roots of certain common words. As an eclectic a conversation that anyone could wish for to while away a bitterly cold morning. There was plenty of wildlife on view also, with Muntjac, hares and strutting pheasants trotting their way in the opposite direction to the stands.

When I got in, I uploaded my iPhone edit of my old buffers.

Old buffers by Tom Owens

A new round of sunshine

Yesterday, Kevin Marrable and I climbed onto the roof of the James Hehir building in blisteringly bright sunny conditions. We moaned somewhat as it was just too bright and contrasty so we sat down and woofed our packed lunches waiting for the light to fade. Luckily given the pasting that the rest of the country was getting, wispy damp cloudy stuff lightened our spirits and we were off.

I had taken my Toyo 45A up for the first time and fired off 6 sheets of FP4 whilst waiting for the light to dampen down a tad. I’m looking forward to getting them in the tank and developed.

From all the visits we have had to this lofty vantage point, this was by far the best. It is I suppose a bit like growing up. I went up there with two cameras, one 5×4 field camera with B&W and a digital SLR with a prime short telephoto with the prime(sic) objective of making some waterfront panoramic images.

Tests on camera looked good. They always do don’t they? I was less than pleased with myself once I got to processing as I was a degree off vertical despite levelled heads and tripod with countless bubbles. I’ll have to sort this anomaly for next time.

Anyway here is one daylight shot with that warm late winter afternoon glow. I love making work in the winter.

Dock and townscape with yachts

The Wet Dock and Town December 22nd 2016