A personal post…

It has been a while since my last blog, but here I am. I have recently been inspired by a wonderful blog @ jtinseoul. As always, if I name it, click on it, it will take you somewhere nice. This post is slightly different and may bore my friends to tears, feel free to skip it.

jtinseoul’s blog was very heartfelt, he speaks about the emotions that go with taking photographs. This links closely to what Trey Ratcliff speaks about when he talks of the artist’s journey.

I am not sure if I can be as eloquent as either of them, but I thought I would share a little piece about where I am now, as a photographer, both emotionally and literally. Shanghai, I love it and will be sad when I leave, later this year. I want to grasp the last moments I can taking pictures of this beautiful, ever-changing city, yet constantly struggle to find my voice. I am not yet constant enough. Many of the places I have visited are disappearing or already gone, and I look at how I have shot them over the last 4 years and despair at how my style has varied so often and by so much.

Maybe this is a result of GAS, I have used many different cameras and lenses. Maybe I should have stuck with my Nikon D7100 and 35mm lens. Maybe I should just keep using my Ricoh Gr? Recently I have been playing with film, but again this does not achieve consistency, particularly when I am experimenting with makes of film, or B+W v Colour (I love colour, but sometimes B+W works so much better…)

Here is one of my recent ‘traditional’ photos. I think I am starting to capture these shots quite well, but street photography is hard and 2 or 3 of these shots may reflect a 7 hour day of walking the streets.

pagespics-1-of-1-7Anyway, I feel I am at a junction. Here are two of my recent favourite photos. They are both flawed, but it is a flaw I am working on and love the look of the final pieces.


pagespics-1-of-1-6In both of these shots you can see I am playing with extreme exposure and contrast. I am also playing with strong ‘grounding’. That is dark faces against light backgrounds (like sky) or light faces against dark backgrounds, which can be helped through the use of flash. But again, as I look through the shots I like that are different from the norm, I can also see they are too different from each other to viewed as a set.

For now I think I will keep walking. I know the advice is to find the perfect location and wait… and wait… and wait… but I just like the adventure.

Maybe this is what this post is all about, the adventure. I have 8 months left of Shanghai and 4 years worth of photos. Maybe a book is due… Maybe the next country I live in i will only take my Ricoh (I know this is a lie as I write it!).

Have fun out there, stay safe and keep clicking.

4 Comments on “A personal post…

  1. Your journey sounds like all I am experiencing too, different cameras, new ways of seeing, consistency… But as many said before – the journey is important and we might (or better should) never arrive…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Birka, new ways of seeing things is an upside of changing styles. My journey with the Arcanum is making me frame things in new ways all the time, then when you think you have nailed it, someone shows you a great alternative. But yes, I think you have to enjoy the learning process, the work is worth it when you nail a great shot (which I know you do!).


  2. I agree with BW.. the while point of a journey is to never reach your destination. Sad but beautiful, I think. And for what it’s worth, your black and white headshots are absolutely breathtaking. Fabulous imagery, Sir.


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