Golden hour all day.
Ok, I put my hands up, I've been terrible at blogging in 2015. I have been lucky enough to shoot lots of film and just haven't had the time to share everything I intended. So I thought I'd put together a little mix of some of my favourite work from the year and, I promise, I'll be better in 2016! Happy new year!
This summer I was lucky enough to be given a ticket for the tour of one of London Underground's abandoned stations - The strand at Aldwych. It really was quite an extraordinary experience; familiar yet utterly strange, we wandered down the tunnels, stood on closed platforms and learnt of the short but rich history of the debunked tube station. Awesome and slightly eerie, I have to say. Despite the low light and slight underexposures, I rather like what I took down there. Although most of us take it for granted today, the network's architecture and iconic design really is timelessly beautiful.
Film Kodak Portra 800 (pushed 1 stop)
Developed and scanned by the UK Film Lab
The other evening I watched the film 'Of Time & The City' by epic director Terence Davies. It's more of a sequence of memories than a film and contains some amazing footage of 1950 & 60's Liverpool life interspersed with poetry and humorous musings from the man himself. I'd encourage anyone to go see it. The film made me realise just how fascinating a city Liverpool is (much to the disgust of my Mancunian other half). Built on the spoils of the slave trade it's impressive buildings largely stand in decaying grandeur now and after the 'slum' clearances of the 50's - arguably still going on there today - they mingle with brutalist tower blocks and uninspired shopping centres. Plenty of new investment seems to be taking hold again there now, particularly around the wonderful docks, but let's just hope those buildings and all that lovely open waterfront remains available to everyone, not just those that can afford a river side latte. Here are a few shots from my last trip there.
Film, Kodak Portra shot on the Contax 645
I am lucky enough at the moment to be shooting for an NHS trust based in Swiss Cottage, so, one free afternoon with a little film left over, I took a wander around the area. It's a very interesting spot architecturally, there are arts and crafts houses nestling in between stucco mansions and span cottages and the colours and details of each building really struck me. Those lovely winter blue skies even accompanied me toward the end too and it was lovely to wander with no destination in mind.
Kodak Portra 400
I've never understood why we celebrate new year in January. To me, it feels the opposite of a beginning; daylight is short, the trees are still skeletal, the weather even colder, surely it's the real close of the year? I think it makes more sense to treat March as the start of the new, so I have decided to celebrate a new year in Spring. Not just to be contrary, I am hoping this will allow me to enjoy the final winter months rather than wallowing amongst all those broken resolutions that never had a hope of taking root (because nothing grows this time of year). And there are plenty of wintery treats still left to enjoy - slow cooking, open fires, frosty window panes - and the winter light in particular. Perhaps because it's so scarce at this time of year, winter sunlight is magical and those blue skies, life affirming - so much more so at this time of year than any other I think. I just vow to get out there more and take more photographs. Although that might sound a bit like a resolution, mightn't it?