Archive for August, 2014

A strange email…

Posted: August 13, 2014 in Uncategorized

…asking me to cover an event for a club I worked with previously, followed by a rant email.

Did a few events for these people in Sheffield last year, with rave reviews, only to have them decide to choose a “photographer” parent who’s child attended the club to do their photography. Not the first club this has happened at, with us, though we quickly got a couple of those back after the amateurs realised just how much work goes into covering such an event.

I should have seen it coming with all the questions he had been asking at the events. Whilst I will not give out specific settings, for obvious reasons, I had discussed framing and acceptable angles with children etc. The next thing I know he’s their photographer of choice even though he would be printing with an inkjet at the events compared to the Die Sub Printer we use. Oh well live and learn.

Yesterday I had an email asking if I would please consider covering a prestige event for them, with sponsors and fundraisers in attendance. Text including “Your superior images and prints reflect the same high quality and standards the club wishes to promote at the event” and “Your ability to communicate effectively with the club staff, parents & children” made me smile and after some thought I agreed. Booking and fee confirmed i thought that was it………………..but oh no.

Within my work emails today sat the title “Stealing business” which upon opening I found to be from their regular “photographer”. By all accounts the only reason I can take a good image is because I can afford professional gear which makes photographers like him look bad in comparison. Also as he’s on benefits this gives me an unfair advantage in his eyes as I can also afford peripheral items such as a website to promote my work so the comment “you must be middle class” made me chuckle. Apparently I should stay in the Hull area and leave Sheffield alone.

My polite, yes polite, reply thanked him for his roundabout way in confirming the clubs thoughts that my business provided a superior service and that all my hard work in developing it was being recognised by others.

Oh I also cc’d in the club secretary with my reply which included his initial rant…..Ooops.

I’d like to think this is my first and last example of disgruntled competitors but I seem to think it may not be.


Saw this again over the weekend at Flamborough Head and oddly reminisced about the many, many years it has been there rotting away on the cliff top. I even recall climbing on this machinery as a child with other kids which would be discouraged today with all the sharp rusty edges now available to injure yourself on. The one still used on the beach appears to be in slightly better shape, and does indeed move when boats need to be towed onshore.

A quickly taken image but one which says so much, even if it’s just about East Riding Council litter policy and enforcement 😉


My Lad’s 16th

Posted: August 9, 2014 in Uncategorized

Wow 16 years ago since he arrived in our lives and yet it only seems like yesterday. The ups and downs, more ups, of the last 16 years have been such a laugh and with his sister around for the last 8 years life has mostly been a barrel of laughs.

Found an image of him at 24hrs old and then took a quick image of him this morning to embarrass him on social media. He loves it though as do we all.


Then there was his surprise birthday cake which was helped in disappearing by much of the family. His sister wanted in on the image though and he graciously allowed her in for a bit of fun.


Uni Web Site Closed Down.

Posted: August 8, 2014 in Uncategorized

Created for the Web Site Module, and though it got me a merit, was a complete waste of time. We were not allowed to use our working names but rather our actual names as the sites address. This meant changing all the signatures on the images, in my case over 60, and after all the effort left me with nothing of use whatsoever. Most annoying that putting so much effort into something that could have been used, post module, was effectively defunct from it’s inception.

I find it utterly amazing how narrow minded, so called, leaders of degree level courses can be. Our module tutor actually argued that all photographers use their own names as branding and would not entertain the thought that we actually operate differently to his thinking. Of course any complaint was beaten down by the hierarchy as non of the teaching staff are ever wrong and I mean never ever wrong……..even when they are. It’s like learning within the old style 50’s & 60’s working culture and they are the all powerful union bosses. Complain and it’s just swept away in corporate bullshit as they can’t deal with any negativity, regardless of it’s severity. Imagine Orwell’s 1984 mixed with education and you might just grab how it runs as a typical public entity. As a private business it would be long gone and forgotten about, being just another business failure where it’s leaders failed to listen to customers yet happily got paid every month. Not an ounce of business sense between them and certainly very little common sense either.

A new course leader, for my final year, gives me a feint hope that I won’t be wasting a £6k+ tuition loan watching Youtube videos as we did this year. Yup, not one actual piece of tuition from our tutor other than watching Youtube video’s. He never even had us take an image during a tutorial, never sent us out or discussed taking images. It’s no wonder that past students, of HSAD, fall by the wayside, as photographers, as they may leave knowing how to discuss the denotations and connotations of an image or name several high profile photographers yet can’t set a camera in ‘M’ for a wedding image. A table, published by a national newspaper, showed that ex HSAD LBPM students had one of the highest failure rates as professional within the first 3 years of leaving.   Other module tutors actually taught us with books and verbal communication which was most refreshing. Quite frankly we could have all signed up for a distance learning course for £300, still watched Youtube video’s and saved a fortune. Amazing how people complained via social media yet only a couple of us dared to challenge directly because everyone knows you’ll be marked down, subtlety but non the less marked down.

Wow site closure to minor soap box moment.



I was asked to create another poster for the local Tumbletime Pre-School group last week and so with a few new images combined with a few old images I have been busy.

Designed at 30 inches x 30 inches to fit an image display unit at a local sports centre this looks great at 100% in Photoshop. It does however look a little lost when reduced to Web size proportions as my © and contact details, at the foot of the poster, are almost 1 inch deep at 100%.

The brief was to design a poster with dimensions of 30″x30″. It was to be bright and vibrant to attract the eye and to hold sufficient content to show a collection of children undertaking activities. With the multi coloured parachute image as a base the rest was relatively simple in construction though I did add more images than initially planned.

Client totally happy with it so just need to get it printed.


What we see…

Posted: August 3, 2014 in Uncategorized
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I saw something today which was, without doubt, grotesque and disgusting. What some people think is acceptable behaviour in public doesn’t really shock me anymore. What gives these louts the impression that it is acceptable and why do certain elements of society feel it is their right to simply shock for shock sake. It made me think of what we see through our lifetime and what we choose to share as memories and then what we choose to lock away and forget.

This image is of my 8 year old daughters eye. An eye of innocence and beauty which is shielded, where possible, from the horrors that sometimes present themselves to us. I sat talking to her about what she has so far achieved and seen in life with all of her replies being innocent.

I asked if I could take an image of her eye and, as always, she jumped at the chance to get into the studio.

‘An innocent eye’