Posted on October 16, 2018
I did not win again!
Well I failed to win yet another Lens Culture competition. The level of skill in these competitions is incredibly high so I am not too distraught. In the words of Chumbawamba, ‘I get knocked down, but I get up again’. As with everything, we live and we learn.
Here are the photos I entered. I will post the review below…
Lens Culture Feedback
thank you for submitting your images to LensCulture, I have enjoyed looking at your pictures.
I find you series Burial Grounds of Bangalore a very interesting project and I am glad to read your dedication to the place, the people and the work that it takes to continue it.
Your first image is a good intro picture. Even from not reading the text I think the viewer can understand where they are going. The leading into this cemetery, here the story starts. i Iike the 3 men walking into the image and the scene and also the dark traffic coming towards them. The light in the background, leading the eye through the gates on to the path is also very nice. I have cropped the image, just ever so slightly, I was being distracted by the lines in the street. They do not add anything to the information and feeling of the image but my eye was drifting there so I think it works better this way.
The motion in the second image is really nice. You have worked well with the technique. The colours also bend very well together. The light is well done and I like that we can only ever so slightly make out the text and the picture on the gravestones. I am a bit confused by the caption though. i think if you wanted to speak about ghosts, the woman needs not to be in focus as she is, and maybe I would choose an image without someone there. I found it interesting the placement of her and the headstones and her rush through them. Maybe that is what you were thinking when mentioning the ghosts. But I think this image speaks of what you mentioned in the text of the people who have their everyday there.
The third image is works very well. I like the framing and the light. His face is slightly dark but what he is doing is well in focus and it tells the story well. The colours are subtle and beautiful. My eye is drawn to the bucket on the left hand side. And again I wish the mans face was a bit more lit up and then that could work as a nice balance. The posters in the background are also good, and here we have many good juxtapositions.
The picture of the two children is nice and the balance is well done. I like that they are both looking into your camera, they seem to trust you. I like that. The interaction becomes something different then. The light is nice and the tight framing works well.
In the 5th image you really caught what you spoke about in your text. And the caption says it all. Life goes on. Its well done and I like the look and action of the girl. She is just doing her thing, in her everyday. She is sweet. The clothing line is also nice and the way that the washing is hung fits the images well. The colours blend nicely and in a way it is comical the man that is dead but staring back at us. I know it should not be but somehow there is a lightness to the image that gives me this feeling.
The portrait of the grave digger is very intense. And beautiful. And also before I read the caption I had this feeling. The fact that he is a gravedigger does not add to it. Or rather it does but the picture is strong and powerful wether we know that or not. The look in his eyes is strong and intense as well. He sees us looking at him and it is almost so strong that we want to look away. The details in his face are beautiful and is it smoke that is ever so slightly coming out of his nose? Its great. The image is really strong and even though it is hard to look at it, due to him looking at us, I feel like I could look at this image for a long time.
The chicken is a great image. The look in its eyes is sad and from the blood on the mans hands we can guess what is about to happen. And also the flowers around its neck. I feel bad for the chicken. I feel connected in this image, thats a good thing. The framing works very well and the light too. The hand is great and so is the background. This is my favourite image of your submission. A very strong picture.
The last image is also very strong. The light from the fire on the mans face is great, so well done. And also on his walking stick. And his bare feet. We get curious what is going on and what he is holding in his hand. The framing is great and without the caption we don’t really understand what is going on but still drawn in. And then we read the caption and it just makes it all stronger. I like also that you stepped out of your comfort zone. And you did very well!
Have a look at the work by Tilby Vattard, I think you will like it.
You ask where to go next with your photography and I would suggest that you put together a strong portfolio and start showing your work at portfolio reviews to get more contact. Also since you wrote that you would like to get published and sell prints.
Thank you again for sharing your images with us. I wish you all the best with your work!
Maybe I will win the next one. However, some encouraging words and some valuable advice. Off to Varanasi tomorrow, so hopefully there will be some more photos on the way.
Take care and keep clicking,
Posted on October 3, 2018
“F8 and be there.”
‘F8 and be there,’ is the explanation ‘Weegee’ gave when asked how his photos were so consistent, and it has become something of a mantra for Street and Documentary photographers. When using a Full Frame camera, shooting at F8 ensures everything is in focus. If you are not using full frame, the F number becomes lower. Explore google if you want to know why. This is not a technical article.
Weegee followed a rule, and everybody followed Weeggee. As a result, there is now a heap of Street Photography that all looks the same. It reminds me of a joke I read this morning, ‘How do you milk sheep?’. Answer – ‘release a new iphone.’ Here are three photos you can take if you want to capture something a little different. Don’t worry, there are no more jokes.
Long Exposure Photography
Posted on September 28, 2018
The Indian photo festival is currently running in Hydrabad. To attend this event I took a return flight from Bengaluru and spent money on two night’s accommodation. Was it worth it? Oh yes, and it runs until the 7th of October so there is still time to go. The icing on the cake is that this event was completely free. If you can’t (or didn’t) attend the Indian Photo Festival, this article will provide some of the names and exhibitions that were there.
Posted on September 19, 2018
A week has passed since I wrote about Cubism and leading lines. I’ve thought long and hard about this, and come to the conclusion that this idea has something going for it. However, we can read more into this than there needs to be. For that matter, maybe there is too much of a focus on composition, full-stop.
Posted on September 12, 2018
There are somethings I know quite a lot about. When I speak and write about something, I try to make sure I know what I am talking about. This is an idea in progress…. I’m thinking out loud. As always, I would love to hear your thoughts.
Posted on September 5, 2018
Using The Fujifilm Instax 90 Neo Classic
This is not a review, more of a discussion. This camera is NOT going to create award winning photos, does not have great dynamic range and, believe me – you would not want to be paying for this thing to spit out 12 shots a second. However, it is fun and a great conversation piece at parties. It also enables the the act of giving. Instantly.
While far from a ‘specs’ list, here are some points you may like to know.
- It shoots at a high f/number – generally, everything is in focus.
- It looks cool and rugged, but is made entirely of plastic.
- The Instax 90 has a few more manual controls than other models – but not that many.
- The film is quite expensive.
- The quality of the photos is either poor, or hip and grungy. Depends on your viewpoint.
I suspect that these comments would be the same for any model of instant camera. In general, they really are not that good for high quality prints. But they are instant, and that is pretty handy.
Street photographers take. We take a lot. We take tiny snippets of people’s time and lives. Sometimes these moments are never noticed, other times they are appreciated, and unfortunately, there are times when photographers are just damn intrusive. It should come as no surprise that sometimes we are not wanted!
Every day I take a shortcut from work and pass by a group of families that live in a small squatter camp. They herd goats and appear to have a couple of cows. The camp looks ragged and is created from waste construction site materials, tarpaulin and scraps of plastic. I have been invited into a hut once, and the interiors are clean and tidy. Children play, women cook, and men head out looking for manual labor jobs. Although I always get a friendly wave, the people living there become shy when my camera is out, and are reticent about allowing photography.
Equipped with my Instax, I have been able to give the families photos they can keep. The act of giving opens hearts, particularly when you are providing mothers with pictures of their children. Using this technique I have started to make inroads in the community. This is not the only location where I have used this method to build bridges. The Instax camera is now a tool I keep in my bag.
Tips and Tricks
- If you try this method, make sure you only take as much film as your budget allows. I give myself one roll a day (10 pics).
- Warning. Once you have handed out photos, any subsequent images you take with your ‘proper’ gear will be of people looking at their prints!
- Clear some wall space at home. These photos are quite addictive.
- Wonder at how you are managing without memory cards, Lightroom and Photoshop!
Take care and keep clicking, Chris
PS – you may notice the site has been re-designed. Feel free to explore and follow!
Posted on August 29, 2018
Antyesti (IAST: Antyeṣṭi, Sanskrit: अन्त्येष्टि) literally means “last sacrifice”, and refers to the funeral rites for the dead in Hinduism. This rite of passage is one of traditional Saṃskāras in the life of a Hindu. It is also referred to as Antima Sanskar, Antya-kriya, Anvarohanyya, or as Vahni Sanskara.
(Wikipedea, 27 Aug 2018)