Showing posts from June, 2017

Racist Undertones

Not every property I visit is a palatial, multi-millionaires pad. I’m working towards only shooting those, but for the time being I spend some of my working week with the stuff that regular people live in. And some very irregular people. A first floor flat on the doorstep of South Tyneside Hospital in South Shields was on my Saturday morning schedule a while ago. I was given a contact name, and time, and I found a place to park on a nearby street which seemed to be scattered with the remnants of car windows. Ahhhh…South Shields. This is an area which serves as the unofficial hospital overflow car park during weekdays. Much of it is resident-only parking, but the side streets quickly become crammed with visitor’s vehicles, and inevitably the local drug addict population help themselves to whatever is on-show to feed their narcotic habit. I digress. My knock at the door was met with no response, and with only 2 minutes to the official appointment, I feared that this was goin

Taking a Lend

Banks are getting away with murder at the moment, and meanwhile, the thick mutts of Britain are being bombarded with rhetoric by The Daily Mail, and The Sun in an attempt to divert attention away from the real scourge of our society – towards minority groups and political opponents who would like to see an end to the status quo. They’re doing a great job as well. The fact that the banking fraternity of Britain, and the wider world was directly responsible for the economic crash of the previous decade seems to have been swept under the carpet expertly, and the blame for our current predicament has been squared at the poorest in our society, and mis-management by a government that was chucked out years ago. It’s like allowing your embarrassing uncle Gary (who loves a drink, and has had several affairs with younger women unbeknown to your Auntie June) to have access to your £200K endowment pot meant to pay off your mortgage in a year’s time. He’s family, and you trust him because

Goodbye to Soshul Meeja

It’s time....... Time to end the ridiculous pursuit of handing my future over to gigantic companies that claim to have values of billions of pounds, yet possess nothing of any tangible value. Corporate behemoths whose raison d’ĂȘtre is selling advertising space to as many people as possible in order to add a few more flimsy floors to the massive house of cards known as social media. Don’t get me wrong – I value it as a means to stay in touch with old friends, new friends, acquaintances, and the odd work contact. It serves me as a form of light entertainment, allows me to share photos of the kids with those who have an interest, and feeds me with funny stories and pictures from my friends’ lives. It is a form of media which complements & strengthens my social circle.  Trouble is, it has become a lazy method of “marketing” for the masses who either run a small business or niche-organisation. I find myself bombarded with repeated promotions constantly, and I respond inevita

Chucky's Pad

The big ones start piling in during the late Spring months, and my job becomes way more interesting. I’m often sent to a location with no detailed prior knowledge of what to expect, but with a property called “The Manor House” I guessed it wasn’t going to be your run of the mill 4 bed detached new-build, so I packed a couple of big-gun studio lights was well as my army of trusty Nikon Speedlights. Good job mate. I was meeting the owner at the house, and I got there first on a lovely sunny afternoon in County Durham. I could see storm clouds gathering in the distance, so decided to go ahead and shoot the exterior before they set in. I used my D3 and Fuji X series mirrorless to capture ground level and elevated shots respectively. Looking at them, it’s interesting to see the difference in tones and colours from the two cameras. The Nikon is much warmer, while the Fuji seems to go for crispness and cooler tones. I always shoot RAW files so that I can extract maximum tonality from the

Out of action

Sometimes you just have to sit back, accept the situation, and let things happen. I’ve never missed a day of shooting or been absent due to illness since I worked in the public sector – which  has an unspoken culture of having sick days as part of the annual complement of time-off. That’s another story. Back in the autumn of 1987 in an office on Buckingham Palace Road, I was working an evening shift as an ops manager in a bureau de change firm. The counter-phone rang, and as I got up from my chair to answer it, I felt the most sudden, intense pain in my groin, and doubled up. It didn’t subside for ages, and I failed to do anything about it until the following year when it was diagnosed as an inguinal hernia – basically part of the intestinal tract had pushed through a weakness in the muscle wall, causing a protrusion. A few weeks later I was referred to hospital, and as it was a beautifully sunny day on the morning of my consultation, I decided to walk the 3 miles. Once I got the