Tag Archives: Snapseed

Nottingham Carnival 2014

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August 17th, weather – irregular & intermittently annoying. The carnival ran slightly late which would have had no differing effect on the effects of sporadic deluges. A massive effort provided by the various organisations, and in particular the young people who made such an effort with costumes & moves.

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We waited at the bottom end of the Market Square, dashing under cover at Costa when the rain came. GBoy burned the battery on his phone taking pictures, some of which I’ll add to this tomorrow.

In the mean time, soca!!!

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Mike Watt, the Missingmen & the Hyphenated Man

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The righteous and iconic Mike Watt came back to my locality recently. Last March we got Il Sogno Del Mariano and this time we got The Hyphenated Man. Watt is an iconic musician with a thumb print on last 30 years of indie/punk playing with the Minutemen, Firehose, Sonic Youth, the Stooges and J Mascis but he still pushes at the gates with his own projects. Lasts nights performance was pre-apologised with “thank you for joining us for this fucked up piece of music”. No apology needed. The Hyphenated Man is a 45 minute power opera made up of 30 related sections. There’s was barely time to draw breath between the sections. This so utterly committed three piece (Watt on bass, Tom Watson on guitar & Raul Morales on drums) blast through the piece with precision and heart.

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The piece dates back to 2006 and is apparently based on characters in the paintings of Hieronymous Bosch. A quick scan of the track list makes this a little more evident;

Arrow-Pierced-Egg-Man
Beak-Holding-Letter-Man
Hammering-Castle-Bird-Man
Bird-In-The-Helmet-Man
Belly-Stabbed-Man
Stuffed-In-The-Drum-Man
Baby-Cradling-Tree-Man
Hollowed-Out-Man
Finger-Pointing-Man
Own-Horn-Blowing-Man
Fryingpan-Man
Head-And-Feet-Only-Man
Shield-Shouldered-Man
Cherry-Head-Lover-Man
Pinned-To-The-Table-Man
Mouse-Headed-Man
Antlered-Man
Confused-Parts-Man
Bell-Rung-Man
Boot-Wearing-Fish-Man
Thistle-Headed-Man
Funnel-Capped-Man
Blowing-It-Out-Both-Ends-Man
Jug-Footed-Man
Lute-And-Dagger-Man
Mockery-Robed-Man
Hill-Man
Hell-Building-Man
Man-Shitting-Man
Wheel-Bound-Man

The piece is described as a punk opera or the third opera following Contemplating The Engine Room & the Secondmans Middle Stand.

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I can’t explain the narrative yet. I’ll have to get back to you on that. Watt has history with short punchy songs. The Minutemen almost invented the genre and have a solid history of juggling themes as they try to start broader conversations outside of the punk scene. You can hear the whole thing here.

My pictures are a little hit & miss. The Cookie in Leicester is a tiny cellar venue and whilst the gig wasn’t packed the surge to the front by bodies broader and taller than mine was enough to keep me on the narrow edge.

A quick mention for the support as we’ll.

Echolocation are a Leicester band of some note. A varying line up but Saturdays small crew did an interesting job. Reminded me in some ways of John Cooper Clarke stream of consciousness with jazz/post-punk soundtrack (like the Sir George Robey on a Sunday in 1992). The inclusion of trumpet really worked as well.

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Lazarus Clamp were also original and engaging. I swear I know the singer/guitarist from somewhere which was distracting. A touch of Wire in there as well as a more contemporary folky Midlakey thing. A couple of big songs with some well placed sonic dynamics.

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The English Riviera

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As an add on to the day job, last Sunday I skittered down various motorways to Torquay for a monday AM meeting. The weather was quite clement until about 30miles from the coast when it became what I can only describe as mizzely.

I’ve never been to the English Riviera before that I remember, but it turns out it’s rather nice. If you squint tightly it does look a little like Monacco from a certain angle. The pictures I managed to take are decent enough to warrent their own post so here you go.

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The following are Hipstamatic pictures, some varying light conditions raging from dull and rainy, early morning misty, sunset shiny to massively over filtered. Enjoy….

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Small text break here. I’m really pleased with the last two above. The next one below is a little odd. I spotted this lying on a merge near the big wheel. A dead gull isn’t anything strange by the seaside but the precision of the twig and its almost runic symbolism make this more than passing road kill.

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Another odd little seaside aside was the little clutch of original Mods and scooters gathered outside the bay side Harvester…. Enjoy here.

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…and this is the final stretch. Some are quite pretty.

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This last one is an HDR picture, early morning pre-meeting blue sky moon shooting… Ppppfffttt..,

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Can you believe it?! Nearly missed the best one. HDR & Snapseed from a precise moment …..

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Backwards from Analog

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Like maybe a billion other people with iPhones & mobile camera devices I spend a lot of time taking pictures with very clever cameras that will shoot reliably in all kinds of conditions and then go about degrading them with an armoury of apps and filters. It’s a huge industry and I contribute to the coffers buying 69p / $0.99 apps for my iPhone & iPad, I must have 30+ now and will happily try more.

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I used to take lots of pictures and after doing ‘A’ level photography I went on to use photo process on my Degree course. My first camera was a Zenith, I then got a Minolta XGM which traveled all over europe and through out the mediterranean. When that fell into disrepair I got a Minolta X-370s. That eventually developed some light leaks and from there I went digital.

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Recently I dug the old cameras out and managed to get some out of date 35mm from a friend (thanks to Ian Davis from LPPG). The aim really is to use the analog equipment to take the kind of pictures that create using apps and then use the apps to bring them back to visible.

The first roll of film was a Jessops own brand ISO200 print film. As the XGM wont seem to wind on consistently I used the X-370s camera body with the XGM’s fixed 50mm lens. Its a slightly dirty lens but does great depth of field.

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I took the film to be washed today and managed to get Boot’s to dev, print and copy to CD the pictures without doing any processing corrections. The result was a very pink set of images, many under or over exposed and purposefully double exposed by shooting a few frames and then winding the film back. The pictures where shot at Conkers Discovery Centre on a very cold dull grey day. Overall I’m pleased with the result’s. Whilst I have, like the addict I am, edited these in Snapseed, this has been done to reveal the images, rather than to disguise them in hipsta chic (not that I have anything against Hipsta Chic!).

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I have another 10 films including some B/W stock, some going back to 1998. Analog work like this, maybe because of the cost, does make you a little cautious about snapping away. I also couldn’t stop my self from taking a picture and then looking at the flat black back of the camera waiting to see the image I just shot. New habits die harder than old ones it seems.

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Update.

Today I asked a colleague in the ‘day job’ to scan the negatives I have. I have to confess when I first saw the machine prints yesterday I was disappointed, once I saw the digital copies I was encouraged. After I’d finished playing with those I was really quite content. But now, after getting some perfect scans from the originals I’m over joyed. Here are three strips that have everything in them that I hoped the project would produce.

The random application of double exposure.
The natural degradation you get from aged substrate & equipment
The artefacts of analog including strip marks, dust & scratches.

I find something real in these, having a greater physical permanence and naturalness. Any post processing from the scans is minimal. A quick section crop like a scissor snip, and the cursory colour balance for a screen view.

As above. Over joyed.

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Open each in full and scan through the surfaces of the picture. These are things I would like to print up at a 1m tall. I take a painterly approach to these things, they are like sketches, pencil on paper. Stand by your line, make it with confidence and it will glow.

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Church (Rock) Cemetery

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I was going to call this ‘Visions of Angels’. Be it Blake, Michelangelo, Wim Wenders, Rossetti or Patti Smith I’ve always liked the idea of Angels. I don’t specifically believe in them but I’m persuaded by a Jungian archetype of a greater common good, a whispering aspiration, some eternal potential.
I don’t really go to Churches, but I’ve always admired faith driven architecture. It lacks pretension mainly and strives for beauty despite its originators more dogmatic & divisive principles.

Because of these fascinations I have photographed and drawn a lot of grave yards and Churches. From Highgate to Pere LaChaise, the hill side graves of Barcelona and the ancient burial mounds of Telendos & Santorini.
On Sunday morning as it was atmospheric (foggy) I took a walk around one I’ve not seen before, Church (Rock) Cemetery in Nottingham. Just at the top of Mansfield Road, at the highest point between the town centre and the Forest recreation ground, built into old sandstone pits in 1845, it was a crowded 13 acres of graves & monuments. The foggy atmospheric thing didn’t really play out, hence most of the pictures here are heavily post processed and heading toward painterly.

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I have lots of little details and should probably make a gallery of these but they need some sorting and editing so these will suffice for now. There are some highly imaginative pieces of stonemasonry and as the site is so huge, a lot of hidden corners, secret dells and private valleys. There’s also some very odd graffiti hidden behind the ivy.

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But mainly it’s the Angels, Whosian Weeping ones, less teeth, sad eyes, beckoning, lots of them, silent and mainly stationary.

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This song is a natural fit and I think makes a good soundtrack for the pictures. One of my favourite early Peter Gabriel & Genesis songs, and the the subtitle for this post.

And finally, this is an iPhone & Olloclip Wideangle panorama of the main path through the upper part of the site.

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The Last of Christmas

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Probably my longest post by virtue of the photographic format. The larger images are full size so open them in a new window for the full effect.

The Hipstamatic print uses the new Tinotype lens whilst the panoramas are done using Olloclip fisheye and iPhone panorama which probably gives around 400degrees coverage. These are a little cropped and then processed, all with Snapseed.

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The final panoramic needs to be seen full screen. At full size they would print around 2M in width.

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Grey December Day

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Today is an awful grey affair, cold, wet and muddy. I took GBoy to the park to try his new bike and in the hour or so we were out I was barely inspired to take the camera out of the bag.
But in the spirit of endeavour I first tried some fleeting dogs, none satisfactory and then settled on tree shapes. These two are tweaked in Snapseed, a little contrast boosted and remind me of illustrative woodcuts, maybe for a Poe story.

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UPDATE.

I had to dig this up and add it on. Thinking about Poe I remembered this. The excellent Christopher Walken reads ‘The Raven. This is from a 1997 project called ‘Closed on account of Rabies‘. Read more about it here and then listen to Iggy Pop reading ‘Tell Tale Heart‘ Its so not Christmassy!

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Castle Marina

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This afternoon I took DBoy5.11 to a party so ended up with 2hrs to kill before I had to collect him. As I needed to get some shopping in, I ended up at Sainsbury which is near Castle Marina and the canal. It was a cold, bright afternoon so quite good light for a few pictures.

I took colour and B/W but the latter worked better. Many of the barges have wood burning stoves so as well as an incendiary air there’s lots of smokiness.

I also got to try my new Tamron 70-300 lens. Very pleased with this purchase! I feel some social snooping coming on!

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Down By The River

…..The River Trent to be precise. I had a little time to kill yesterday afternoon and whilst it was cold, the sun was out and the air was crisp. I had to go to West Bridgford so although it was match day at Nottingham Forest I found a place to park and went for a walk on Victoria Embankment from Wilford Suspension Bridge (like a toy Golden Gate) up to Trent Bridge. There are several full size images here so apologies for the slow loading. I think they are worth it.

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The late afternoon sun on the river was very dramatic, lots of long shadows and strong contrasts. I used HDRPro on several of these to keep some detail in the foreground and most are post processed in Snapseed. All are taken from my phone. The one below goes against the basic principle of looking directly at the sun. I still have ‘white spot’.

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The image below has a bit of the Hitchcock about it. There were a about 50 gulls sitting to the landing dock all looking at me in a menacing way. I shouted at them to try to get a bit of movement but all I got was a shrug and funny looks from passers-by. This one is full size, shot with HDRPro and tweaked in Snapseed.

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The last image is a full iPhone5 panoramic from the mid-point between the bridges. Uploaded at the full size so you will get the best effect if you open it in another window. The resolution from the new iPhone is really quite impressive.

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Berry Pop

Woodthorpe Colour Pop

A very quick post. I saw on Twitter the link below about doing ‘colour pop’ in Adobe Lightroom. Not something I have tried before, but as I’ve recently started to use Lightroom I thought I’d give it a go. This is a little course and extreme and I’ve blown out the background with halos but overall I like the way it transitions.

Find out about colour pop here or go look for an app and let me know how that plays out.

Really starting to love Lightroom!

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