Tag Archives: ‘Street photography’

London, Bikes, Nudes. Ah yes, it’s Saturday afternoon…

Now if I were in Germany I would expect this sort of thing. After all, the English Gardens in Munich is a traditional nudist spot, and a fine place for a beer too, of course. But in the middle of London…, just next to the Tower…, on bikes… It’s all a bit…, shocking!

IMG_3834

I was in town to take photographs of something completely different, and I heard a commotion – drums, whistles and so on, (this girl was having a good blast on hers…), and of course I wandered over to see what was going on.

IMG_3829

A demo, no less, and for some reason everyone was naked. It was raining, of course. But that didn’t put them off. Hey, if you’re going to get wet it’s better to have your kit off, I say! And it didn’t dampen anyone’s enthusiasm, because we’re British and we are used to the rain anyway.

tandem_small

This guy at the front of this tandem was rather half-hearted in my view. His rear companion had got the idea – shoulders covered, balls out.

IMG_3842

Bloody hell – here’s Eve looking for Adam! You can tell it’s a bit nippy though… I never did work out the link between bikes and nudism. And I don’t really see a logical link. It all feels a bit uncomfortable to me. Just like this chap below. I leave you with his bag metaphor, which sort of summed up a typical Saturday afternoon in London town…

IMG_3847

 

 


An hour or two at Westfield

Shopping isn’t really my thing (Mrs P and Ms P make up for my lack of enthusiasm). But occasionally I get press-ganged and I end up in that consumerist mecca like Westfield. How best to kill a couple of hours?

Salesgirl_small

 

Take some photos of course! I decided to check out the Westfield sales staff and do some portrait image-making. Pretty much all of them were lovely and welcoming. Take this lady for example. She offered me a water massage (for a tenner)… And the gent below had the most delicious tea I’ve ever tasted. It was also the most expensive tea I’ve ever tasted…

 

Tea boy_small

Sky TV checked out the football score for me & showed me all the new tech. He couldn’t sell me anything even if he had tried – I spend a lot with Sky already… No wonder he is beaming.

Sky man_small

 

But most fun was had at the Tesla showroom. First, I loved the car (I want one!). Second, the staff were full of cheeky beans, and it shows…

Darina_small

 

Darina3_small

 

Maybe shopping at Westfield isn’t that bad after all…

 


Rush hour in Perugia

London was all a bustle today. Hot, sticky, busy, full of people, all with a place to go and little time to get there. Now I quite like the buzz, but I have to admit that photography is probably easier when there’s calm. And that does exist in the city, but more so in hilltop Italian city states than in the UK’s megametrolopolis… This is rush hour in Perugia:

 

7am, a Thursday morning

7am, a Tuesday morning

 

Isn’t it blissful. Don’t you wish every day could start like this? Can you sense the head-down, must get on, march march-ness of the commuters here? Round the corner I spotted another person dashing to work:

SONY DSC

 

The adrenalin is just kickin’. I wandered further, in search of more typical morning rush hour shots. But no-one was around. Clearly it was too early:

Deserted backstreets

Deserted backstreets

Empty porticoes

Empty porticoes

 

Even the main square was empty. Mind you, as I said it makes for easy photography… And good memories to sustain me through the crush-push-shove (?!@**!!) of the tube on a Tuesday morning here in London. Bring on the holidays!

Town hall steps, empty...

Town hall steps, empty…

 

If you like these pics, check them out in colour here and let me know which version you prefer. Plus I have a series of articles appearing in Black+White Photography magazine. Link here to the mag if you’re interested in how photographs create emotional reactions in viewers. Let me know what you think – I’d be fascinated to find out!

 

 

 


Dubrovnik is full of character(s)

There’s nothing like a bit of street photography – a chance to capture some character portraits. And Dubrovnik is full of characters. So here’s a selection from a Dubrovnik day.

Marin Drzic, poet.

Marin Drzic, poet.

OK, so I’ve cheated a bit at the start. Not so difficult to capture this Croatian poet. But he’s got a good smile, a bullet hole in the neck (the recent war) and a shiny nose ‘cos people stroke him for luck. Clearly a character, he’s in!

Going shopping

Going shopping

Next is a nun on a shopping trip. Early morning croissants for the nunnery… Well, maybe not, but provisions must be bought, and she’s not hanging around. Off to the market…

Stuffed peppers for dinner

Stuffed peppers for dinner

Once shopping is done, gossip must be shared. And there are lots of ladies doing exactly that:

Gossipers 1

Gossipers 1

Gossipers 2

Gossipers 2

Meanwhile, outside the city, the oysters are harvested for fancy restaurants. All done by hand of course.

Oyster catcher

Oyster catcher

This guy is fishing for his lobster dinner

This guy is fishing for his lobster dinner

And it all ends up at the fish market

And it all ends up at the fish market

Some have time for an afternoon stroll, whilst others have to do the chores

Time for an afternoon stroll

Making the most of the afternoon

Whilst the young ones do the chores

Someone has to do it…

As evening kicks in the youngsters kick off. First of all the good girls come out and strut their stuff.

Still gossiping of course...

Still gossiping of course…

And inevitably the good girls turn into the bad girls, the way of the world…

Out for some fun...

Out for some fun…

What a fantastic place! Everyone a character, and all out on the street. Couldn’t put the camera down. Loved it. If you get the chance, go.

(If you like this post, check out this one about the beautiful city)


How do you know you’re on an exotic island?

Apart from the lovely warm weather and the beautiful hotel (check out: what makes a hotel great ) there were some other signs that we were somewhere rather more exotic than cold windy octoberish Essex…

Soufriere and The Pitons

Soufriere and The Pitons

St Lucians are house proud, demonstrated by their colourful roofs. Much care and attention goes into choosing just the right colour. A choice, all of our taxi drivers assured us, best left to the ladies…

Banana leaf

Banana leaf

Fern and coconut

Fern and coconut

The vegetation is extraordinary. Luscious and green, and huge: warm weather and lots of rainfall. Exotic vegetation leads to exotic food – bananas of course, plus pineapple, mango, breadfruit, plantain, sweet potato, cashew nuts, nutmeg and mace. All the sorts of fruit we buy in Waitrose and Sainsbury’s – it comes from here, literally…

not for the faint-hearted...

not for the faint-hearted…

Mixed up with the exotic food are some exotic animals. The island specialises in tarantulas, boa constrictors, and a particularly poisonous snake called the Lance de Fer. Not that we got close to any of these – you can see in the pic that Mrs P and Immy were staying well back from the spider. Got a lot closer to the fish however – snorkelling on the reef by the beach was amazing. Just zillions of fish!

John the Fisherman

John the Fisherman

A dog's life

A dog’s life

Fishing village

Fishing village

Some exotic characters too. John, the chap above, is a fisherman by trade. He told us he is 53 and has never slept outside his village, not one night, ever. Why should he? He has everything he wants here.

Our lovely beach

Our lovely beach

Getting in amongst the waves

Getting in amongst the waves

So we have to leave this lovely place and get back to reality. And therein lies a truth about the exotic. It seems exotic because it is so different to home. But you need home to allow you to recognise that difference. Long live exotic holidays!

St Lucian view

St Lucian view


It’s all going on at the village fête…

Come wind, rain, or heatwave sunshine, the English love a good village festival. A chance to get all the local characters together and have a party. Pimms, tea, hotdogs and cake, a pint of the local brew and a bit of fun and competition. Last weekend was Little Hallingbury’s turn, just up the road from us, so we turned up with the whole family.

Where would we be without tea!

Where would we be without tea!

and cake!!!

and cake!!

and a bbq burger!!!!!!

and a bbq burger!!!

Kids know instinctively how to make the most of these fêtes. Immy has this tactic to a tee: tap Dad for a tenner, then tap Mum for the same, and then try your luck with assembled Aunts and Uncles, and then spend spend spend. I swear she come away in profit…

instant art for 2 quid.

instant art for 2 quid.

Where else can you hold a ferret?

Where else can you hold a ferret?

Suddenly it can get serious. Time and effort has gone into the prep, especially in the competition marquee…

Carefully grown, those potatoes...

Carefully grown, those potatoes…

Fruit perfection is paramount

Fruit perfection is paramount

"How did that one win?!"

“How did that one win?!”

The competition winners will get the cups

To the winners the spoils

Of course at the stalls male sporting prowess needs to shine through. Here’s my brother-in-law, Adam, a good golfer, concentrating very hard on hitting a ball into a bucket. And missing. Spot the smirk on his nephew’s face (left hand side, sunglasses). Plus the unknown bystander (right hand side) who’s finding the uncle/nephew competition quite hilarious!

how can it be this hard?

how can it be this hard?

Given his miserable failure with the small ball, Adam has a go at the throwing shy. Here he is, not waiting for the photographer (me…) to get out of the way before pelting the targets with the beanbag. He missed, again:

Oi! Get out of the way!

That black blog isn’t a flag on the building, it’s a beanbag hurtling its way towards me….

This is Brit society at its best. Characters to the fore, both human and animal.

Dogs abound, of course.

Dogs abound, of course.

Mrs P wins a ferret race...

Mrs P wins a ferret race… and quaffs a Pimm’s

And Miss England puts in an appearance, and promptly get snaffled up by clearly the most pro photographer of the day, who just for 5 minutes has forgotten all about his camera…

the old pro

the old pro

Clearly a great day for all. Well done Little Hallingbury!


New York Faces

People pictures. Why do we take them? To capture the moment of course. A 60th of a second pinpoints a memory. Last week I posted images of New York cityscapes. This week NY figures and faces. New memories.

Face of NY

Face of NY

I know they’re just snappy snaps, moments when the family indulges me and my camera, or doesn’t notice that I’m pointing it in their direction, again.

the wannabe actress

the wannabe actress

all round dude

all round dude, who’s stolen my hat, again…

happy grandparents

happy grandparents

for once, I'm in this one - feels strange....!

for once, I’m in this one – feels strange….!

the whole bunch

tourists in NYC

I did try to do some abstracty shots of the real locals – but to do this sort of photography justice takes time and patience, and works better when the rest of the family isn’t groaning in impatience when I pull out the camera…

Bubble man

Bubble man

shopper in the apple store

shoppers in the apple store

New York Face

New York Face

Ne wYork Figures

New York Figures

NY hot lips, I just couldn't resist...

NY hot lips, I just couldn’t resist…

I was here as a kid, 35 years ago with my parents. We did the same things, we climbed the towers to look at the views. Powerful memories that mean much to me. There are some photos, but not many. Film photography didn’t lend itself to the ubiquitous click click of the modern age. In effect there are more memories being created now than ever before. The kids aren’t bothered about these shots now, but maybe they will be in 35 years from now….

What a view!

What a view!

The view again.

Lucky kids, admiring the view

Rockefeller Centre - while they do this, we drink cocktails!

Rockefeller Centre – while they do this, we drink cocktails!

New York babe

New York dudette

So here’s to the modern photographic process and its ability to make memories. On the whole, it’s gotta be a good thing!

New York Mama

New York Mama

If you liked this post, check out: New York, no bruised Apple here… or the other US posts – click on the archive on the right hand side. Enjoy!


Spraypaint arty wildness in Shoreditch

“I need a photograph of the hedgehog in Shoreditch. You can’t miss it, it’s massive…”

Well, I’m not one to turn down a chance to get out the camera, and hey, this is almost a commission! So I head off to Shoreditch and get searching for the ‘hog. But this is Banksy’s back streets, so my eye gets caught by the wonderful graffiti and now I’m firing off shots in all directions…

Black tears

Black tears

Big nose

Big nose

Balaclava and shades

Balaclava and shades

It’s like an outdoor art gallery, full of colour, weird perspective and eyes that follow you everywhere. And this all on a dreary Saturday morning with the drizzle mizzling (come on Spring, hurry up!)

I'm watching you...

I’m watching you…

No, I'M watching you!

No, I’M watching you!

These two were hilarious – they stood there for ages reading the sign…

Be useful

Be useful!

This is of course trendy London. Uber-cool. Not necessarily my most natural haunt, but I do my best to fit in. (Not hard – 10am on a wet morning, the place is still deserted…). Red Indian isn’t feeling the cold however.

nnn

Club Row

Naughty, naughty

Naughty, naughty

Grrr

Grrr

Scrummy Vietnamese lunch at the Boxpark Shoreditch (google it – fantastic idea) as I wait for the rain to clear. But hang on, I’ve forgotten something. What about the ‘hog? Where’s the prickly little blighter gone…? Hang on, What’s that? Aha! O yes, definitely a ‘hog, and blimey, he IS massive. Big as a double decker bus. Well, it is London…

Double decker hedgehog

Double decker hedgehog


Leica lusting

Leica shooting takes practice. Everything is different. Focus, hold, framing, timing – the whole lot. It feels unique, and it takes getting used to. All the more reason to cash in on a birthday gift and go out with John from the Leica Akademie, and shoot Soho.

The decisive moment...

The decisive moment…

Would I have taken this shot with an SLR…? Possibly. But enjoyed it as much. No. This one just feels such like a Leica shot, slap bang in that Leica tradition. Pre focus, set aperture and speed. Wait for the right moment and squeeze the trigger.

One for the wife.

One for the wife.

Rangefinders are fun. Framing can be tough, but they’re light, and you don’t look like a boastful camera geek with a massive lens stuck on the front. Slightly more subtle, refined…

The Stones are everywhere (awesome at the O2 on Friday!)

The Stones are everywhere (awesome at the O2 on Friday!)

The quality of the Leica image is superlative. It’s those biting lenses, in this case a 35mm Summicron. (My kids can’t believe you actually have to focus it yourself…. at that price it’s not autofocus?!!)

Window mannequin

Window mannequin

Mmm, does anyone actually phone from a box anymore? Or is it just advertising space for hookers?

Mmm, does anyone actually phone from a box anymore? Or is it just advertising space for hookers?

John had brought along a real treat. The brand new BW-only Leica. My lust knew no bounds. So the last pic is with the borrowed BW M9. I really really really need to win the lottery…

Hey, Maccas friends. May the Guardians be with you!

Hey, Macca’s friends. May the Guardians be with you!


Church, Kissing, High heels and Vodka. Must be Kiev!!!

I love these eastern cities, they are raw and vibrant, and desperate to have a good time. And beautiful too!

St Sofia church

Spot the Saints…

Built originally in the 11th century.

I noticed this in St Petersburg too – everyone seems to be snogging. Couples just can’t get enough of each other, and they’re not too bothered about privacy. I know Doisneau had to fake his photo of the couple kissing by the Hotel de Ville in Paris, but in Kiev there is no need to fake. Just point the camera…

(next to the Church)

(on top of the statue)

the full tongue and throat in front of the river view!

Kiev(ians) clearly don’t want to hide away. Everything is on display. Especially the girls – high heels are ubiquitous, and being dressed up as if your off clubbing is considered normal. Great for street photography!

standard uniform here…

everyday wear!

Short skirts de rigeur…

There was some great graffiti, rather risqué, and not all of it suitable for this blog. Adds to the electric feel of the city.

Swords and flowers and chain-mail???

Of course, a visit to Kiev is bound to end with some serious vodka drinking, and the inevitable raucous evening party (followed by hang-over meeting the following morning). One of the group below didn’t actually make it to the meeting the next day. S/He will remain nameless, but you know who you are!

He’s a Kiss fan…

Lining them up!

These two smuggled their drinks onto the bus…

Alcoholic halo…

Impromptu piano playing…

And the girls looking worse for wear

And the party went on, but we’ll draw a veil over it there!

If you liked this post, check out

Imperial Russia Rides Again, part 1

Imperial Russia Rides Again, part 2