Thursday, 31 March 2011

Rejuvenating youth....

The beach and the sea can be such a wonderful place, and it is always a draw for people young and old no matter what the weather.  It is like a tonic for rejuvenating that feeling of youth!

It is March, it was very cold the day I took these and yet still people were here going in for a swim!

I also saw kids building makeshift defence castles in the sand and....

.... I remember doing the same thing although in my case it was to see if I could find dinosaur bones, treasure or could dig my way to the other side of the world!

The sea in many ways is an unstoppable force which draws us in with each breath it takes.

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

The beginning of a night out meets the end of a night out....

Two Hipsters (called Shaun and Gareth) I spotted as I was about to get into the car but had to stop them to ask if I could photograph the pair of them as I thought they looked like hipsters - I know they were taken aback by it coming from me!  I liked this photo as I told them because I could see by chance two other guys walking up behind them..... and then look what happened.... 

The two guys who had been in the bar celebrating something decided to gatecrash on the action! The two Hipsters were mortified (think they thought this was a staged you've been framed type thing which it of course was not and I thought this made the whole thing way better and I still smile at the whole awkwardness of it all which I in fact loved as they were actually two very nice happy drunk guys and the two hipsters were lovely too and they were just that hipsters!)  So this was the beginning of a friendship that no sooner did it start but it was over with the photo session (these photos!)...

So for a brief moment, Shaun, Gareth, Lewis and Kenneth became friends with the help of my Olympus Pen to seal the memory.....

Thanks guys xo

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Crane of hope....

Please let's hear some good news coming out of Japan.

There is a crane that I sometimes see which when I do always brings a smile and feeling of hope and good luck so I always look forward to seeing it. Today, it flew across my head, above the tenement houses which line the New Town streets, making its way to another spot along the Water of Leith where I sometimes see it fishing. I have never seen it fly literally across my head before, I have seen it fly off, but this time, today as I took a lunch break, it really felt even more special and I hope that I am right....

Did you know, the Crane is associated with longevity, health, happiness, wisdom and good luck?

In Asia, Cranes are symbols of longevity and immortality. The White Crane can fly to the heavens and it is a Chinese symbol for "wisdom" and is sometimes called the "heavenly" or "blessed" Crane. Cranes were vehicles of the gods and in China fly them to the "Isle of the Immortals", the legendary home of the eight immortals. A Crane's eggs were used in magic potions to grant eternal life upon its drinkers.  
In many parts of the world, Cranes are regarded as a messenger of the gods. In ancient Egypt, legend says that a two-headed crane was once seen flying over the Nile, to announce a new age of joy and prosperity.
Cranes are masters at killing snakes, thus, in Christian symbolism, they were seen as natural enemies of Satan.
Their long annual migration, made them symbols of endurance and their wings were once used as talismans to protect travelers from exhaustion. The return of the Cranes, each spring made them symbolic of the Resurrection.
In Greco- Roman myth, the Crane was sacred to the Mother Goddess, Demeter, who renewed the earth each spring, when her daughter, Persephone, was released from the underworld.

Bright light beckons.....

Dexter and I took the Marvin and Carly for a walk yesterday by ourselves and had a lovely time playing I spy which was lovely as I have a lot of things buzzing around in my head just now :-)

I only had my i-phone on me as it had been rather overcast, but then all of a sudden the light from the sun setting just shone like a fireball coming towards us, it was amazing, truly stunning.

After taking these photographs of the light beckoning us to move towards it, it dawned on me, you never know when or why an opportunity may present itself to you so make the most of life and the opportunities that present themselves and take a leap of faith and step out of the shadows and into it, you never know you might just fit right in with that alien landscape and find it heavenly!

It also helped that just after I took these pictures whilst continuing on our I spy trail, Dexter on one of his turns said "something beginning with BM" which I had to guess.  The answer was "Beautiful Mum" - he most definitely has a bright future ahead of him I say ;-)

A blacksmiths tale....

Lonsdale and Dutch have been based in central Edinburgh for a long time and are a traditional blacksmiths which has a feeling of artisan craft about it. What makes it even more interesting is that it is owned by a guy who's mother was on the cover of Vogue in the 1950's (Margaret French), and his premises are next door to the Artist Sax Shaw who was friends of Salvador Dali.

We had just had some brunch in the lovely cafe next door (which in itself made us all really happy) and upon leaving noticed that they were busy working and so I popped in and asked if I could take some pictures which is how I found out the above!

The workshop is covered in a thick layer of fine soot, and the light there is beautiful and provides the place with an atmosphere that conjures up so many, stories, thoughts and images, and I got lost in it all taking pictures with my camera.

Sparks flew and glistened in amongst all the grey

like my imagination and the stories going through my head as I looked around this place and I hope the photographs do that for you too.

Monday, 28 March 2011

AZ Great Britain 2011.....

This was a really funny and amusing drunk man who smiled and started shouting to beckon me over whilst he was sitting on a park bench having a can of Carlsberg lager and enjoying the flowers, view and people as they walked on by.  He made me laugh, and I loved the fact he was wearing a lady's hat.   He let me take a few photo's of him.....

Then later on my walk I saw this black guy sitting down outside a shop having a cigarette and thought he was interesting too so asked if I could photograph him.  He was flattered and also couldn't understand why someone like me would want to take his photo!

Then there was also this woman who I saw during my lunch break on Friday. I didn't ask if I could photograph as I think I would not have captured her expression (and therefore overall instant appeal to me) which I thought was brilliant. She was tall, slim and cat like, perhaps she thought I was a dog for having my camera and taking pictures and she was telling me with her stare to back off, I'm a blonde dog though!

Or this lady, who I stopped because she caught my eye as she seemed to be someone who I could imagine having been rather beautiful in her youth, and even though that had faded, she still made an effort with her appearance and on speaking with her I could see how flattered, touched and surprised she was at having been asked to have her portrait taken because I had noticed her. That in itself was charming.

On Friday night as Anders and I walked Marvin and Carly (before collecting Dexter from Cubs), this man was outside a bar with his friends. His gold jewellery bedazzled me, which I jokingly told him and he let me take his picture!  His name was Jack.

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Me time with Scavenger Hunt word prompts!

"Me" time,  that's something that I manage to snatch a lot of and I capture it with every photograph I take as in effect it is an instant for me when I can be lost in enjoying that very moment which can then be enjoyed as a tangible visual memory over and over again. With a camera always on me, "me" time is never unobtainable!

The Faerie Market

This photograph I took on Friday as Dexter, Anders and I took Marvin and Carly for a walk. The light was just so magical in this spot at this particular moment I had to pull out my camera to capture it. It reminded me of a place where you might find Peter Pan and The Lost Boys in Neverland in that brief moment! This is exactly what the light looked like, what you see here is exactly what I saw (no photoshop), and by extension, so did my camera and this is what I mean by being able to always find "me" time.

So on with the Scavenger list which consists this week of: "me" time; Groups of 3; Decay; Kitchen and things that make you go hmmm!  So lets move to groups of 3......

What's the time Big Bird?

What's the time Big Bird?

 Big Bird say's "it's boo time"!
Were you scared?  I thought Andrew made the mask come to life!

So that's my group of 3 above, what's next on the Scavenger Hunt list, Decay, (e.g.old/abandoned)

This is my stepfather who is in hospital. He is 86 and has a catalogue of illnesses including vascular dementia and heart failure and his body is definitely in a state of decay which I dare say happens when you have all the things wrong with him and have lived a full life. He has been in hospital for the last 3 weeks, and whilst he has been gravely ill, this is a moment I captured which makes me happy as in that split moment, I saw his joy and love of me and in my being with him. 

I took the image before he took a turn for the worse and as you can see he was happy to see me and that is something that for me is really special to have captured.  It was nice to see him happy and share with him my interest in photography (not that I think he totally understood, but he was happy that's for sure). It was nice to show him my Rolleiflex and capture the joy he had at being in my company which is something that I will cherish. Although this may appear a sad picture, it is actually a happy one as he was definitely improving here as thankfully I got him into hospital in the nick of time.


never complete without yummy food....

Life should be full of things (even if they are little and brief) that accumulatively make you feel like it has been a blast, 


Scavenger Hunt Sunday

Friday, 25 March 2011

Review Santa Fe, I hope I am not found out!

I am stunned. I have absolutely no idea how I managed to pull getting selected off, but I have been selected and got an confirmation email on Wednesday night that I have been invited to go to the Review Santa Fe at the Centre in Santa Fe, New Mexico to have my photographs reviewed! I am s**! scared.... what if they find me out and are disappointed when they see I am just "little ol' me" green as a leprechaun's (ahhhhh)!!!  What am I going to do......

  • Maybe I somehow actually did land in Oz after posting my at the end of the rainbow piece on my blog and this is all a dream?
  • Maybe I should therefore go in disguise as I have nowhere near the credentials or background of the other people that have been selected to attend this review in the past. Am I just deluding myself and therefore shouldn't go as I will just disappoint and be disappointed as I am not the calibre that they get ....
  • ....My blonde head can't take this excitement, I mean, what the!

Jennifer personally asked in a lovely comment she left me the other day if I too would join in her Friday link.  How could I refuse something fabulous especially when I was all dressed up special!  Hope her Friday link is the huge success she hopes it to be.

    Thursday, 24 March 2011

    Seaside promenade...

    I am experimenting with different types of street photography.  These were taken on 35mm film using a canon camera which has a wide angle lens.  Believe it or not, these are taken really pretty close up, I am about 3ft away from the subject who I am photographing with a flash!

    The photograph above I took when I was literally right beside this photographer who was trying taking photographs of strangers using a long lens (apparently this is frowned upon by street photographers because it flattens the whole thing and doesn't work as well because you are not interacting). It is more like spying on someone than shooting street (Anders read that). I thought it was funny that he was doing this so I went right up and took this picture without him even noticing. His two friends who were standing right beside him were stunned at my brass neck, and just after I took it, tapped him to explain (in part because it is what he was doing but from the safety of a zoom lens). He was bemused, and came up to me laughing and asked "did you get the shot" and asked if he could take a look. I said, "I think so, but this is the first time I have used this camera (which I picked up in a charity shop) so not sure what they will turn out like"! He then saw I was using film and said "oh, old school", to which I just had to laugh!

    Wednesday, 23 March 2011