Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Group project - update

Following on from my earlier post this was the final selection for our group project 'Confinement'.   I'm not going to comment too much - it was a challenging project in many ways and, although the series works ok, I think the success of the project was in the learnings rather than the final result.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Paris Photo

Great trip to Paris Photo - stopping off at Anonymes at Le Bal first, which was jointly curated by one of our tutors, David Campany.

It was very inspiring, but as there was so much to take in it was in a sense a little overwhelming.  These are some of the photographers that I noted to check out - Lieko Shiga, Michael Wolf, Loan Nguyen, Jean Francois Lecourt, Cedric Delsaux, Vanessa Winship, Gyula Holics, Alex Prager, Sebastian Szyd, Helen van Meene, Kenneth Josephson, Roger Ballen, Nadav Kander, Trine Sondergaard, Desiree Dolron, Marina Abramovic, Marion  Poussler, Alan Frame, Maiko Haniki, Taye Matsui, Bruce Wrighton, Nadin Asfar, Robert Beigman, Jessica Bauhaus, Sonia Braas, Hajas Tibor, Sze Tsung Leong, Ray K. Metzker, Naoya Hatakeyama, Julie Blackmon, John Mack.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Mad hair day

Had fun yesterday with a couple of photography friends doing some studio portraits....

Thank you Vladka and Adriana for modelling for us.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Group project

Today I've been to Tilbury, in Essex, to do a test shoot for a group project I'm doing as part of the Constructed Photography module.  I've teamed up with Sarah, Laurence and Alan and our project focuses on the constraints and restrictions on our lives throughout different life stages.  The fact that we are never totally 'free', that there is often some other (underlying) influence or barrier (social, cultural...etc) that affects our behaviour and decisions.   

Monday, October 25, 2010

Film stills

I've had a very hectic month or so with work so have been a bit quiet on the blog front, but at the beginning of October I started back at Uni again.  The practical module for this term is Constructed Photography, introducing us to staging and lighting (in particular flash) and producing narrative based imagery.

Our first project was due in today, a submission of six images in the style of film stills.   I decided to go down the Cindy Sherman route, partly as I like some of her work but also from a practical point of view, as I didn't have to worry about coordinating models.  I didn't start with a specific theme or film genre although B-movie style played some part, and thriller influenced me in order to try and create a sense of unease, the unknown.  My main aim though was to try some of the different lighting techniques we have been introduced to, like mixing ambient light and flash, using fill in flash, motivated lighting, making day time look like night time, bounced flash etc.  They are ok, although I'm not sure I particularly like any of them, or they are that successful.  Perhaps if I'd not been the subject, or had more time to refine my ideas and the lighting, then I might've liked them a bit more!  But, at least it's given me the opportunity to try out a few new techniques.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Orford Ness

On Saturday I visited Orford Ness in Suffolk, a former secret military weapons testing site during the world wars and Cold War, now a nature reserve owned by the National Trust.  An interesting place and, for me, especially so for the desolation and wide open spaces.

Monday, September 06, 2010


I've just been trying out photomerge in Photoshop, which is a very clever tool.  My original two images of this V&A gallery have now magically merged into one...

Monday, August 30, 2010


Friday, August 27, 2010

More buildings...

I found quite a few interesting buildings to photograph as I wandered around Paris and Madrid - i will post some more soon, but this was on the terrace of the new building at the Reina Sofia.  I particularly like the interesting reflections.

And I just loved the floor of the cocktail bar of the Hotel Urban in Madrid.  And the cocktails.  In fact, the hotel was pretty amazing full stop.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

In transit

I've recently come back from a train adventure across France and Spain - and whilst waiting at Gare du Nord in Paris I started a new series (working title 'In transit').  Here's a sample...

Monday, July 26, 2010


Saturday, July 17, 2010

Architectural photography

Last week I attended a great course at the V&A, run by renowned architectural photographer Dennis Gilbert. Not only did I pick up lots of tips on composition and Photoshop, and some knowledge about architectural commissions, but the really fun part for me was being able to try out some large format architectural cameras with Leaf digital backs, which were amazing (of course I want one now).  We were also shown the V&A's print room, where they hold lots of original prints by photographers like William Eggleston and Walker Evans. Definitely a recommended resource.

Faculty Building, Imperial College by Foster & Partners

Cast of Michaelangelo's David, V&A

Friday, July 09, 2010

Polaroid effect?

I just tried out the polaroid effect tutorial from an earlier post plus added a bit of gaussian blur to one of my Leigh on Sea images from last weekend - not sure I'm totally convinced!  

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Enjoying the sun

What a great way to spend a sunny weekend - a photography trip to Southend and Leigh-on-Sea with a few of my cohort last Saturday, followed by a visit to Childwickbury Arts Fair and a nearby Stanley Kubrick exhibition on Sunday with my husband (I want that original Barry Lyndon poster now).  Loved it. 

Monday, July 05, 2010

Toy cameras and vintage aesthetic

I just came across this article on toy cameras and creating vintage effects in Photoshop.  I'd much rather try out the toy cameras but, as I need to improve my Photoshop skills, I'll give some of the tutorials a go over the next couple of weeks.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Alternative processes

I've always been drawn to traditional photographic techniques, and it was interesting to see last week at the St Martins Postgraduate Certificate in Photography show that one of the trends this year had been an increased interest by students in some of the more traditional analogue processes.  I loved Yoshimi Lee's work, who had used the 19th century wet plate collodion process - the same process Sally Mann has used in some of her current exhibits at The Photographer's Gallery.  I've not tried the wet plate collodion process (yet), but here are a couple of my cyanotype (blue) and Van Dyke (brown) attempts from a few years ago.

I see you've got curtains now

As a reminder of some of the work I did this year, here is my very first attempt at a montage...it was part of my submission for last terms digital photography module, from my series 'I see you've got curtains now'.
(Btw, the title comes from a nosey neighbour of mine who 3 months after I moved into my flat said to me 'I see you've got curtains now!').

Friday, June 18, 2010

Free Range

Last night I went to the Westminster end of degree show - part of Free Range at The Old Truman Brewery on Brick Lane. There was some interesting work, and overall the standard seemed better than last year - although perhaps I'm just able to appreciate it a bit more now. Some work seemed very familiar...it seems it's hard to find something that's not been done before!  This image by Pavel Dornak was one that stuck in my mind though - it was part of a proverbs series, this one from 'When the cat's away, the mice will play'.  Witty, and well executed.  

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

At last...

Finally, after months of looking enviously at friends blogs and websites I have got around to setting up my own.  And, to kick things off I thought I would go right back to the beginning - to my first ever camera.  It was a Kodak Pocket A-1, my Brownie.  

I think I may still have it stored away somewhere; I must try and dig it out sometime.  I don't actually remember what I took photos of - but this is where the intrigue started.  At 14 I bought my first SLR, a Ricoh KR-10 Super (below), which I absolutely loved!   Over time, other interests started to take precedence, but about eight years ago I revitalised my photographic interest and got the camera out again....  

Several short courses later my Ricoh finally gave up on me.  A very sad moment, but it served me well. I am now trying to embrace digital technologies - although I still love film and the whole darkroom experience, and experimenting with different cameras and techniques - including my pinhole that I made from an old coffee tin!