This cinema-quality documentary film recalls the work of Don McCullin, the celebrated war photographer who has taken some of the most affecting war, famine and humanitarian photos of the 20th century. He is 75 now and made the film, well, because he was seriously ill and told Morris to come and film quickly before he died. (He has had an operation and is recovering well.)
Today was the inaugural five-hour lesson of Matt & Pete’s Photo School in which 10 strangers met upstairs in Birmingham’s Victoria pub to learn more about photography and how to improve our own efforts.
The framework of the day – after tea and coffee – involved an hour of learning a bit about the technical side of how a camera works, a bit about Henri Cartier-Bresson and a bit about the theory and style of street photography.
Being in the Cotswolds at the start of the new year has been lovely and surprisingly mild and sunny. Today we happened on the North Cotswold Hunt – no longer of foxes but of a scented trail laid down just ahead of the hunt by a set of runners on all-terrain quad bikes. I caught the start on video, setting out from the Lygon Arms in Chipping Campden and we were lucky enough to bump into them again on a cross-country walk to Blockley. In a rather working class, urban way, I stared agog at it all: the hound pack, beautiful horses, clopping of hooves and the vivid scarlet jackets. I’m afraid I was quite impressed.
Having different blogs for different subject areas means that I am a slave to them all. So if it’s quiet here on my central hub then it’s probably because I’m over on one of my other workday or spare-time blogs. As a quick roundup, here’s what I’ve been posting elsewhere of late:
31 Destinations in Time – because it’s not just about the place but the era in which you visit it. I’ve just posted number 11 in the series on Dumaguete City, capital of Negros Island, in the Philippines in 2007. The series also includes Bali, Iceland, Venice, Jordan, Slovenia, Paris, Gili Trawangan, Austin, Texas and San Francisco.
Subs’ Standards – lately in my sub-editing blog I’ve been picking up on a few funnies that have made it through to publication. I also published my first guest post – from multimedia journalist Andy Bull on the subs-friendly art of curation and live-blogging. I’m now thinking of asking other sub-editors to write about their experiences of digital subbing.
Katchooo Mix – a scrapbook of stuff that is relevant to my interests.
Flickr news – fresh up are holiday pics from Llangollen canal and the Isle of Purbeck, plus shots from Mostly Jazz Festival weekender who kindly gave me a photo pass.
Grant Thornton Thinking blogs – I help write and edit four blog channels for Grant Thornton UK on/about: business leaders and entrepreneurs, the high net worth community, international markets and boardroom issues. Recently I’ve researched online business networks in China, live-curated the UK Budget and set up a Scoop.It for female finance directors. I’m lucky in that the firm’s online channels are open to exploring new ideas for business and financial content.
The Firehead blog – I’m also blog manager for this European content and comms recruitment company. They let me post LOLcats among the more serious business content. This makes me happy.
Every year when I renew my Flickr account I pick out my favourite 50 photos (here is last year’s set). Except this year I seem to have overshot the mark with 75 on the short long list. Consume in whichever way you want: by Flickr set, thumbnail screengrab (above) or pretty slideshow (below).
Sometimes, despite low light conditions and a shady rainy British summer evening sky, the perfect picture is made. This one is from a photo project idea I had to pick ‘A dozen roses’ from the front garden. It was delivered perfect from the camera on an ISO of 1600 and required no image manipulation (although I did up the contrast slightly). The bloom itself is from a David Austin rose called Abraham Darby – whose namesake, oddly, was a Quaker stalwart of the Industrial Revolution who produced ‘pig iron in a blast furnace fuelled by coke rather than charcoal’ (source: Wikipedia). From a grim industrial past comes true beauty. Here’s the full bouquet of my 12 roses.
Ooh, just realised I can create a slideshow on Flickr. So while waiting for today’s Traditional Edwardian Fete photo set to upload to my favourite photo-sharing platform, here are my top 50 photos (imo). It’s a personal pick since joining Flickr in September 2008. And if you don’t fancy the slideshow, feel free to browse through the 50 Favourites set on site, photo by gloriously random photo. 😉
For those who need a reason to scoot through, there are pics here from:
The desert where Lawrence of Arabia was filmed
The murder of crows in my local park
A haunted furnace in Birmingham, Alabama
Light-painting with an illuminated gyroscope
Rice representations of human populations
And neon No Farting sign in a pork ribs shack
And who should open the show but, natch, the lovely Pete Ashton, who was the one who pointed out how easy it is to do a Flickr slideshow. Full circle.