Zombies On The March

Published October 23rd, 2011

Over 3,000 people marched the streets of Brighton yesterday dressed up as zombies for the annual Beach of the Dead celebration.

Brighton is particularly good at this kind of thing, last time I saw a community embrace Halloween with such graphic splendour was in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, about ten years ago. There it was mainly students. In Brighton, everyone, young and old joined in. Even some of the photographers (there were hundreds!) dressed up...

This is what the BBC had to say about it. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-15418899

Thanks to the organisers, Beach of the Dead, and the incredible enthusiasm of the participants. I'm looking forward to next year already!

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Published October 15th, 2011

I've been messing around with the new version of Instagram on the iPhone4 since they released iOS 5.

They've added some filters and a tilt 'n shift function. I had some meetings in London yesterday and used the opportunity to try some shots. I use the iPhone camera or Camera+ to get the shot, then load the pictures into Instagram from the stack. Apply some filters and upload.

It's a diversion, but it's fun and with a bit of effort I bet I can get some decent photographs!

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Published October 6th, 2011

"Here's to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They're not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status-quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify, or vilify them. About the only thing you can't do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do." - Steve Jobs

I don't know why I feel slightly shaken up by this news, but I do. Perhaps in recognition of the fact that death cheats us all in the end and that it only seems like a couple of weeks ago that Steve Jobs stood down as chief executive of Apple.

Whatever we think about the products, Apple is a company that changed the world, and without the focus, determination and vision of Steve Jobs, both the company and the world would have ...

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The London Street Photography Festival

Published October 5th, 2011

Last night's talk at the Brighton & Hove Camera Club was presented by Brett Jefferson Stott, director of the London Street Photography Festival and of Shoot Experience, an organisation that organises interactive and experiential photography experiences in partnership with organisations such as the Tate Modern.

I should own up that I've never really 'got' street photography. Anyone viewing my collection here will immediately see that. I like street photography and appreciate the images, but I don't connect to it in the way that I do Landscapes or Architecture. And that's a failing on my part, I very rarely see the picture that's about to happen when it involves people. That's one of the (many) critical skills that I lack.

Brett's talk threatens to change my attitude. I saw amazing photographs by the very eccentric Vivian Maier and extraordinary modern photographs from the winners of last year's London Street Photography Festival. I can now see past the distractions of lomography and s ...

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Scott Kelby's Worldwide Photowalk - Brighton

Published October 1st, 2011

A blazing hot October day in Brighton saw the coincidence of Scott Kelby's worldwide photowalk and the London to Brighton Breeze VW Camper Run - with all that plus the ever enthusiastic Ian Pack organising the walk, there was no way this wasn't going to be a photo day!

Those who have read my previous posts about photowalks will be able to guess what happened. With fifty or so photographers let loose on the Volkswagon's, yours truly was not going to break the habit of a lifetime. Within about thirty minutes I'd lost the pack and by the time I'd finished with the Brighton Breeze, two hours later, I realised my erstwhile friends were probably several miles away shooting a fairground! Well, that will have to wait for another day.

One of these day's I'll learn to keep an eye on my friends as well as my photography. Thanks due to Ian Pack for another very entertaining walkabout!

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Brighton Photographers Meetup - Low Light

Published September 15th, 2011

Another great workshop last night with the Brighton Photographers Meetup Group.

Low light photography is not something I have a great deal of experience with, so my expectations of getting great shots were not high. I started on the wrong foot by leaving my remote control at home - fortunately I realised and had time to retrieve the situation!

The techniques in low light photography are not particularly complex. As long as you remember that to get enough light on the sensor to record a usable shot, you will have to have a longer exposure, the rest is obvious - number one enemy is camera shake. You need a tripod, anything slower than about 1/25 second will show noticeable blur unless you have exceptionally steady hands.

Vibration is the number two enemy. From wind, nudging the tripod, any number of accidental factors. (Turn off auto stabilisation incidentally, vibration will kill it) A tripod should keep the camera steady, a remote control to trigger the shutter will also help. A g ...

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Magnum Photographer: Mark Power

Published September 14th, 2011

I attended a talk last night by Magnum Photographer Mark Power at the Brighton & Hove Camera Club. To describe the talk as inspirational smacks of cliche, but Mark is a remarkable photographer and an extraordinary person.

As a photographer his achievements are amazing, ranging from books such as "The Shipping Forecast" which takes documentary photography into the realm of the imagination - Mark referred to the project as "wanting to photograph the places I'd always imagined them to be" and "The Sound Of Two Songs" a document of his love affair with a country, Poland.

He has documented some of the 20th Centuries most memorable occasions, such as the fall of the Berlin Wall "by accident" apparently and the construction of the Millenium Dome in London. He was asked by the architect Sir Norman Foster to document the redesign of the Treasury building!

If his achievements as a photographer are breathtaking, his modesty is unusual. Self effacing and at times self deprecating, his response ...

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So Many Networks, So Little Time!

Published September 6th, 2011

A confession. At one time I wrote three blogs simultaneously. On Music, Technology and Fiction. Then I discovered Flickr. I upload photographs to a bewildering number of locations, 500px, Flickr, Tumblr, Instagram, oh and Google+. I had some wonderful idea that this was easily manageable along the lines of my showcase being 500px, my presentable pictures being Flickr, my point 'n shoot being Tumblr and my mobile being Instagram. Just writing it makes it seem like a lot of work!

Of course the reality was different. It's a muddle and if it's the way I represent myself on line then it could do with an overhaul. I need more focus and less distraction. Me and my readers both!

Anyway, its time to rationalise. 500px stays for obvious reasons. Flickr - well I've a lot of contacts there and have built quite a collection over the past few years. It has its good points and its bad, but on balance I think I'll stay. Instagram is handy, I like the filters and the whole iPhone photography thing i ...

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Brighton Photographers Group MeetUp

Published August 23rd, 2011

I joined a group of like minded folk from Brighton Photographers Group for a photowalk on Saturday. Its the first time I've done anything like this and have to say it was great fun and I'd do it again.

The concept is simple enough, everyone meets at a coffee shop and agrees a route. Thirteen people turned up and we agreed a route that took us through the street market in the Laines, through the Palace Gardens and thence to the seafront, ending up at the Brunswick Festival which is by happy coincidence only five minutes away from my house.

So we set off and within minutes, I found I had lost the group! In fact I came across various members at different points along the route and after about ten minutes, gave up worrying about it and started enjoying the photography. Ended up taking well over a hundred pictures despite a very dodgy contact lens that persisted all afternoon.

The real benefit was that I found myself taking pictures that I maybe wouldn't have thought of on my own. Pictur ...

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Published July 24th, 2011

I’ve got a feeling this may turn into a series! The talk on photography forums is that camera phones will most likely replace point and shoot cameras before very long. The quality is getting better and we always have the phone to hand, so its difficult to see a fault in this logic.

Additionally, the iPhone platform offers a double whammy that point and shoot cameras have not so far been able to match. Connectivity and Applications. A killer combination.

I’ve played around with a couple of Apps; Instagr.am and Hipstamatic both allow you to take photographs, share them with friends and apply a range of effects and filters. Hipstamatic make a virtue out of apeing 60’s and 70’s print styles, with a variety of ‘lenses’ you can apply in software. Instagr.am is similar, but not quite so determinedly retro.

Filterstorm is a decent attempt at an editing package, Surprisingly large amount of functionality. All you need is a pair of strong glasses and a lot of patience.

I’ve also got hold of ...

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