Saturday, 21 May 2011

PERHAPS , It's all in the interpretation

When you take a photograph, the point where you press the button in just one of a number of stages involved in 'creating an image'.

It all starts with an idea. You get a picture in your mind and then go out and find a subject that fits your mental picture. Or perhaps that's not true. Perhaps you see the subject in front of you and this then evolves into an idea which you then have to record. Or perhaps it's neither of these. Perhaps  you take a snapshot without really thinking but all the while, in the background at a subconcious level you really ARE thinking and you don't realise until later that you have a potentially exciting image to play with.

Too many variables to ever nail it down as a simple logical process to be sure, however at some point you have to make concious irreversible deciscions about how you want to present your creation to the world.

Digital or wet darkroom, it doesn't matter, that's just physics and chemistry, we're talking about creativity here and so far thank goodness the white coated boffins haven't managed to distill that into a bottle and if they did , well, then people like you and I are lost.

To complicate things further, there is, of course, no RIGHT way to print an image. The same image and I mean EXACTLY the same image can be prepared to give any number of completely different results leaving the viewer with several ways to interpret what they see and hopefully inducing different moods and emotions to experience.

Perhaps the images below will explain things more clearly

And finally thanks for the emails Identifying the Song 'Freelove' by Depeche Mode.So if you think you know your lyrics, identify this song ( and no internet cheating ! )


Monday, 16 May 2011

Problems with comments

I was a bit puzzled at not receiving any comments on the first few Blogs I posted but being new to the game I though perhaps this was quite normal.

However I've been contacted by a couple of people who tell me that they tried to post comments but were being blocked by the software.

Having spoken to my internet guru I've discovered that the problem may lie with google and he's currently looking to find a way round it.

So, in the meantime, if you do feel the urge to make a comment on one of my blogs then please feel free to contact me directly via email on and I'll get back to you.

Apologies for the inconvenience but I did warn you from the start that IT is not my strong suit. Hopefully things will be sorted soon.

Should you find yourself once more looking for inspiration and want to see some outstanding photography then try googling  CINDY SHERMAN. It's only my very humble opinion but I rate her as the greatest living artist in any media. You won't be disappointed.

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

No hidden catch, No strings attached just free film

Clearing out at the studio I came across some film in the fridge which is no longer of any use to me. The stock is all Fuji 35mm some 160 ISO some 400 ISO and a few rolls of 800 ISO.

The film is all out of date but its professional film and has been stored in a refrigerator from the day it was purchased. The ISO rating may have changed with age but using a couple of rolls to experiment with and judge its current speed should still leave 50 perfectly usable rolls.

So if anyone out there reading this fancies a batch of film to play around with then simply contact me on 01254 231802 to let me know.

The film is FREE to the first person who contacts me, with a couple of minor conditions,

  1. You must collect the film from the studio
  2. It's a job lot, you take it all
  3. There is NO guarantee of its condition, it's taken as seen
If the collector wished to make a small VOLUNTARY contribution to our chosen charity, DERIAN HOUSE CHILDRENS HOSPICE this would be very welcome but I stress this is not a condition for taking the film.

Finally and just for fun there is a bonus point (but no prize) for spotting the song reference in the blog title

Friday, 6 May 2011

Always use the best materials

Here at the studio we do a LOT of copy and restoration work.

Many of the photos we see are in a pretty bad way, cracked, creased, torn or with pieces missing. Most of this damage can be repaired given enough time and patience.

The other major problem with most of them is that they have faded to some degree and once again using the right tools and lots of experience this can largely be remedied.

The most surprising aspect however is that the most badly faded ones tend to be the most recently taken and this is largely because they have been printed on cheap paper using cheap inks on a home printer.

The look of disappointment on a clients face when told that the image is beyond redemption can be quite upsetting, particularly when the other photo they want restoring is 60 or 70 years old and in better condition than the newer one.

The lesson is simple. If you want your images to last NEVER use cheap unbranded paper and NEVER use cheap alternatives to the printer manufacturers own inks. You will only regret it at a later date when your irreplaceable photo is gone forever.

I learned this lesson the hard way. In the 1970's there was a cheap alternative to Kodak, Agfa and Fuji slide film made by a company called GAF. I used it extensively at the time and when I recently decided to revisit some of my old images I found slide holders full of clear , blank film.