Category Archives: Photography

Not quite an exhibition.


Tenth of December sees the return of the very popular Christmas Fayre at Bunyan Baptist Church in Stevenage Old Town (known for its Live nativity scene including real donkeys).

Entrance is free, and as an added bonus this year I’ll have a stall selling prints of some of my LEGO® photographs and my range of Christmas cards.

ChristmasCardsAnimation

Come along!

Before and After

I photographed a lovely property in Bricket Wood last week for one of my regular clients. While I was there I noticed another agent’s sale board outside, so couldn’t resist a sneaky look at their website to see the photographs they’d been using.

Now, I’m not saying mine are the best photographs in history, but let’s do a comparison shall we?

Before (18 of 18)after (1 of 14)(I took the other agents’ board down before shooting this.)

Before (9 of 18)after (5 of 14)

Before (2 of 18)after (7 of 14)

Before (13 of 18)after (8 of 14)

Before (4 of 18)after (4 of 14)

Before (1 of 18)after (13 of 14)

Before (8 of 18)after (14 of 14)

Before (6 of 18)after (9 of 14)

Before (7 of 18)after (10 of 14)

Before (11 of 18)after (12 of 14)

Before (12 of 18)after (11 of 14)

Before (5 of 18)after (2 of 14)

Before (17 of 18)    after (3 of 14)

I’m learning all the time on this job, and looking at these two sets of photos helps me learn. Whilst I can see I’ve taken more care about angles and paid more attention to some details, There’s is actually something rather vibrant about the originals, and mine could do with looking a little less ‘flat’. I’m also intrigued to note that despite not knowing where to point their camera, whoever took the first set did choose to lift a couple of rugs. I wonder if that’s something I should be doing?

And that’s why they hire me.

This week I photographed a nice little mews house in the centre of Hertford for a client. I’ve just spotted it’s also on the market with a different agent. Lets compare photographs, shall we?

Exterior1a7be977b0d98a648a92b48c7d21dd7cac4109c2

6 Bailey Hall Mews (13 of 14)

Sitting Room06d30764216b75f64d89cb7e910b38599e7e22af6 Bailey Hall Mews (2 of 14)

Kitchend3822c0612d6879d744237322d70682307f85ec66 Bailey Hall Mews (5 of 14)

Bedroom One
de8c7105d610183c1d0f46038b80ea3f122da044
6 Bailey Hall Mews (9 of 14)

Bedroom Two721d7f7585fa375cd4c3671fefbd556c11f97ef06 Bailey Hall Mews (8 of 14)

Bathroom1a1633c2fb0ee9128b2184c9063b62bfec1600ea6 Bailey Hall Mews (11 of 14)

And that’s why they hire me.

Oh, and I also supplied some alternative views of the main rooms…

6 Bailey Hall Mews (12 of 14) 6 Bailey Hall Mews (14 of 14)
6 Bailey Hall Mews (7 of 14)  6 Bailey Hall Mews (6 of 14) 6 Bailey Hall Mews (4 of 14)    6 Bailey Hall Mews (3 of 14) 6 Bailey Hall Mews (1 of 14)    6 Bailey Hall Mews (10 of 14)


Update: I guess I might as well mention that if you want to rent this property, here is where you can find it.

Exhibitions are over. What now?

It was great to exhibit my work at the degree show and then at the Truman Brewery as part of their Free Range series of graduate exhibitions, where we were exhibiting alongside six other universities’ photography graduates. Thank you to all who came along to either exhibition. I had some interesting conversations with a few folk about my project, including several suggestions that I should look into publishing the book properly – including one that came up with a couple of suggestions about who to approach.

I’ve been looking for online reviews of the Free Range show, but it’s early days yet; photography Week 2 opened last night. (I may go along to have a look – there was some really great stuff on display during week 1.) At least one blogger has picked my work out as among their favourites from the show, which is rather nice. I wonder if anyone else ‘spotted’ me?

ArtAttack

The end of the exhibitions really does mean that university is all over (bar the graduation ceremony, but that’s not until September). It’s been an amazing experience to dive into student life in my (relative) maturity, and I’m hugely chuffed to have come out the other end with a Photography Degree with First Class Honours*. I’ve had in mind for ages to write something about what it’s like to be a mature student inhabiting world of mostly 20 year-olds, but that’s never really appeared. Lets just say it’s been a positive experience and has (mostly) made me feel young. Hoorah!

And so… what now?

Well my property photography business is up and running, but undeniably slow and as things stand isn’t going to make me a living. I’m hoping to develop this further as a starter, taking other commissions as and when they come my way. Let me know of any opportunities that you hear of.

Screen Shot 2015-06-19 at 12.49.39

(* Disclaimer. We don’t officially know our degree classifications until the end of July, but I’ve had all my grades back for every module and if it doesn’t average out as a first they’re using a previously unknown type of mathematics.)

Phase One 645 DF

Following a tutorial today, I’ve borrowed the Phase One 645 DF camera system from my university loan store, just to see if I should be using it for a particular project rather than my usual camera.

For purely practical reasons, I’m unlikely to use it for the whole project, but I may use it occasionally. It can be a bit fiddly to use, but boy when you get it right the detail is astonishing. Take a look at this:

TC-20150212-006787

 

Now I’m sure most of you know how big a LEGO® Minifigure is. That’s a pretty sharp image that is. But is it any better than I can get with my Canon 650D? Well, no, perhaps not. Or at least, not when you look at this crop. But whilst you may assume this was taken with some sort of macro lens, no. This is the remarkable thing – the photograph above is actually a crop from this one:

TC-20150212-006787-2

 

…and look how much detail is still showing. Zoom in that far on one of the files produced with my camera and it’ll be a lot less sharp than this. In fact, let’s go further in; here’s an even closer crop, again from that very same file.

TC-20150212-006787-3

 

Wow.

Only trouble is, this camera system cost more than my car.

It’s an essay. Whoop-de-doo!

I wasn’t planning to publish my latest (and indeed last!) essay as part of my degree, but I just got my feedback, which was mostly positive and came with a surprisingly good grade, and a few of you seem to be interested enough, so here it is. Until today no-one else had read it, not even my wife. Click on the image to read it, if you want to. But not if you don’t.

Screen Shot 2015-02-04 at 16.50.28

This was the feedback from th two marking tutors:

FIRST MARKER:

You have chosen a fundamental subject to explore and do so with flair and imagination and most importantly with some critical skill, showing that the rise of the selfie is very much a contested area.

Though you state that as a new subject finding academic sources are more of a challenge, you managed however to marshal a range of relevant academic sources to really back up your statements, crucially showing some important areas of debate. Indeed – contrary to your feedback, your lack of a firm conclusion is appropriate here. I feel you do manage to explore a key idea in the difference between the idea of photograph as record and communication.
I didn’t mind the way that you strayed a little into the realms of social science in researching some reasons of why people made selfies, indeed an interdisciplinary approach can be fruitful, especially if other academic research on the area is not forthcoming. There are ethical considerations in interviewing in this way and you should really have shown how you adhered to UH guidelines on this kind of research– I feel some form of ethics statement and method should have been in your appendices, however by keeping everything anonymous you have avoided a major issue here. Good that you are aware of the anecdotal nature of this research and its limitations.

One area you could have explored in more detail was the relation of the selfie to self-portrait in terms of art and its auratic nature. Walter Benjamin’s analysis might have been fruitful here in unpicking the Cornelius image from the modern selfie. It could also have thrown light on the ‘statue selfies’ and the Samsung advert.

Overall a mature and informative piece of work that I enjoyed reading very much.

SECOND MARKER:

You have produced an excellent essay exploring the phenomenon of the ‘selfie’. Although admittedly this is not a study prompted by a thesis to be proven or disproven through research, there is no sense of ‘aimless meander’ in the way in which you have framed your research questions (loose and exploratory as they are), and pursued them through research and argument.

Your research questions are clear and stated from the outset. They are then explored through competent research using a wide range of sources (scholarly papers, newspaper articles, even personal conversations). That research is deployed mostly in a judicious manner throughout the essay. A criticism would be to your use of conversations and unstructured interviews, which produced results that even you acknowledge as ‘anecdotal’. If the testimonials have only anecdotal value, then why use them? I ask this question because any material included in an essay will have the effect of contributing to possible meanings and reception of that essay, despite any disclaimers or warnings that such material needs to be bracketed.

That criticism aside, this is, I repeat, an excellent essay that shows you engaging with research, criticism, and evaluation in a very mature and considered way.”