My plans for 2017

New Year resolutions

2017 has been a difficult year for me. Along with the good we are also blessed with some good days but we’ve all seen good and bad. The bad reminds us to be grateful for the special moments appreciate what we have the good and be tankful for the all the support that we receive from our loved ones.

For this year, I would like to focus more on myself and grow as an artists and creator. So I thought that I would put together my personal New Year’s Resolutions for 2017 something I can come back to and remind myself of what I’ve planned to achieve or better to tick what I’ve achieved off the list.

  1. Put stronger ideas, meaning and emotion into my photographs.
  2. Study the light in more details and to use it to create portraits
  3. Recreate the passage of time into my photographs through movements
  4. Shoot more film
  5. Make my photographs more like paintings.
  6. Shoot more film and have successful results
  7. Learn to develop and print my own film
  8. Learn to worry less on what people think of me
  9. Learn to listen and most importantly follow my instincts
  10. Define the purpose of my photographs.
  11. Define myself and style as a photographer and apply it to everything, not just my personal work.
  12. Set new professional goals.
  13. Shoot more ballerinas.
  14. Shoot more flowers.
  15. Make more videos (at least one every week)
  16. Stop wasting food, wasting money, wasting products.
  17. Live with less.
  18. Believe in myself more
  19. Shoot more for others.
  20. Make a home.
  21. Save money for real vacations, not work vacations.
  22. Create a portfolio site.
  23. Work on my health everyday by eating well and exercise
  24. Find a way to create more romanticism in my work.
  25. Build the life I want to live in, not the one others want for me.
  26. Learn to be more comfortable with myself and sharing my life.

What are your goals for 2017? I love to hear your plans. Please share below

Monday’s Inspiration – Thomas Annan

Thomas Annan was a Scottish photographer known for being the first to record the poor housing conditions of the poor.

Originally from Dairsie in Fife,  Annan moved to Glasgow as an apprentice engraver, and was friendly with a trainee Chemist called, Berwick. They set up business together in 1855 as photographers. Berwick then left to pursue a medical career.

In 1857 the firm moved to premises in Sauchiehall Street, a lot of business at that time came from photographing country Houses and Mansions around Glasgow. Also photographing paintings whilst at the houses. General landscape views were photographed then sold as individual prints bound into albums.

He also took a series of images documenting the new Glasgow Water Work Scheme including a view of Queen Victoria at the Official opening.

In 1868 The City of Glasgow Improvement Trust approached Thomas Annan to take pictures of some of the slum areas prior to demolition. This is claimed to be one of the first times photography was used as documentary evidence. Exposure times in some cases were measured in minutes.

Please take some time to discover more of his work by clicking here

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Noises, Doubts & Wishes!!!

Here’s to silencing the noises, the doubts and the questions
Here’s to listening to that little voice
Here’s to perseverance
Here’s to believing that wishes do come true
Here’s to reaching for the stars
Here’s to a another prosperous year.
Happy birthday to me!!

noises

Monday’s Inspiration – Marc Riboud

Marc Riboud was a French photojournalist with an incredible body work that I believe everyone should be familiar with. He is best known for his extensive reports on the Far East – The Three Banners of China, Face of North Vietnam, Visions of China, and In China.

Until 1951 he was an engineer in Lyon where he was born. His photography career started after but he took a week long picture taking vacation. He then moved to Paris where he met Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Capa, and David Seymour, the founders of Magnum Photos. They were impressed with his work and Cartier-Breason became his mentor and Capa his supporter and arranging for him to have his first images published in LIFE magazine. By 1953 he was a member of the organization. His ability to capture fleeting moments in life through powerful compositions was already apparent, and this skill was to serve him well for decades to come.

His most famous image, now regarded as one of the definitive Parisian images, was the picture of the workman painting the Eiffel Tower in 1953. Riboud himself said of the image “That painter was joyful, singing as he worked. I think photographers should behave like him – he was free and carried little equipment.” That was Riboud’s approach; traveling freely with a hand-held camera, photographing, as he said, “the rhymes and rhythms in my viewfinder”.

In the mid-50s he traveled to India in a specially converted Land Rover. This vehicle he bought from Magnum founder George Rodger, who had used it for his celebrated work in Africa. After spending a year in India, Riboud made the first of his numerous journeys to China, where he worked extensively over the next three decades. Many of his monographs, the first of which was published in 1966, are devoted to China. It was there, in Beijing in 1965, that Riboud took one of his most archetypal photographs. Taken from inside an antique dealer’s shop, the photograph depicts a typical street scene in the Chinese capital as witnessed by a traveler: old and young stand talking amid ornate but rundown architecture. But the scene is only visible through six rounded windows, the striking framing device giving the work an element of bold abstraction. This combination of formal composition and informal everyday life is a hallmark of Riboud’s work. “A good photograph is a surprise; my camera has to be ready to catch it”, he has said. Riboud has also quoted the poet Ren’ Char, who suggested that one should “forsee like a strategist and act like a primitive”. The results are very positive, as the artist has noted: “When we succeed, it’s a great joy, a way of putting a visual order into the chaos that’s all around us”.

Here are a few images from his body of work.

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1960. MOSCOU. Place Rouge.
1960. MOSCOU. Place Rouge.

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Nord Vietnam, 1969. Phat Diem, centre de la rŽgion le pluschristianisŽ du Nord Vietnam. Attendant de recevoir lacommunion pendant la messe du dimanche matin dans uneŽglise de Ninh Binh

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Monday’s inspiration – Emil Otto Hoppé

Emil Otto Hoppé (1878-1972) was one of the most important art and documentary photographers of the modern era.

Hoppe was born in Munich on the 14 April 1878. He moved to London at the turn of the century, where he began experimenting with photography.

Beginning art photography in 1903 Hoppé was admitted as a member of the Royal Photographic Society where, over the next four years, he regularly exhibited his amateur photographic works. In the same year Hoppé was also associated with The Linked Ring Brotherhood and fellow members Alvin Langdon Coburn, Henry Peach Robinson (1830-1901), and George Davidson (1854-1930), who played an important role in international art photography, maintaining close ties with continental and American groups including the Vienna Camera Club and the Photo Secession, New York.

In 1919, Hoppe began to travel the world in search of new subjects to photograph. He journeyed to Eastern Europe, Africa, the United States, New Zealand, Japan, Indonesia, Singapore and India. The resulting photographs were published in a number of books, including The Book Fair Women , which included international sitters from differing backgrounds and cultures. The book introduced groundbreaking ideas about beauty; shattering the outdated view held in Britain that true beauty was a Western beauty.

Hoppe was also a prolific street, portrait, landscape and travel photographer. In the 1930s Hoppe increasingly went out on the streets to look for interesting people and situations to photograph. The results were often published in photo-series featured in magazines such as Weekly Illustrated . In order to photograph unobtrusively, Hoppe would wrap the quietest camera available to him, a fixed-focus Brownie, in a paper bag with a slit for the lens. This enabled him to photograph daily London life with remarkable spontaneity.

As a portrait photographer, his strikingly modernist portraits describe a virtual Who’s Who of important personalities in the arts, literature, and politics in Great Britain and the US between the wars. Among the hundreds of well-known figures he photographed were George Bernard Shaw, H.G. Wells, A.A. Milne, T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, G.K. Chesterton, Leon Bakst, Vaslav Nijinsky and the dancers of the Ballets Russes, and Queen Mary, King George, and other members of the Royal Family.

Hoppe was obscured from photographic history when, aged 76, he decided to sell five decades worth of work to a London picture library, the Mansell Collection. Filed anonymously by subject, Hoppe’s work lost all notion of authorship. His work remained in the collection for over thirty years after Hoppe’s death, and was not fully accessible to the public until the collection closed down and was acquired by new owners in the United States.

You can discover more his work here.

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Marshalling yards, Berlin, 1925
Marshalling yards, Berlin, 1925
Factory floor, Borsig Locomotive Works, Berlin, 1928
Factory floor, Borsig Locomotive Works, Berlin, 1928
Continental Hanover Tyres, Cauchouc and Gutta Perola Co., 1928
Continental Hanover Tyres, Cauchouc and Gutta Perola Co., 1928
Junkers Werke, Dessau, 1928
Junkers Werke, Dessau, 1928
Bridge with statues seen from below, group of children holding hands, Würzburg, 1925
Bridge with statues seen from below, group of children holding hands, Würzburg, 1925
Rail car carrying extinguished coke, Hösch Steelworks, Dortmund, 1928
Rail car carrying extinguished coke, Hösch Steelworks, Dortmund, 1928
Long crane, tall chimeny, M.A.N. Works, Nürnberg, 1928
Long crane, tall chimeny, M.A.N. Works, Nürnberg, 1928
On the factory floor, C.H. Jucho bridge builders, Dortmund, 1928
On the factory floor, C.H. Jucho bridge builders, Dortmund, 1928

The beauty of difference

Just like many photographers, I have an Instagram account and I check my feed more often than I care to admit. More often I find that I get bored with what I see.

Just like many social media networks out there, you can find great and inspiring photographers. However, I tend to see the same things over and over again. How many of us have seen legs dangling on a ledge of some kind? No matter how much I refresh it seems to be pretty much the same. Is it me or just the algorithm that is set that way?

The beauty about photography is that it can be a way to express yourself. Another way of sharing part of you with people. Since we are all different and have different experiences, what better way to share who we are?

I’ve always felt like an outsider, I never really fitted anywhere but I’ve come to realise is that it’s that difference that sets me apart. The same goes with my work. I could have been very happy with my earlier work because of what I’ve been told. But I wanted to create something that reflected who I am and what I feel. So I set out to learn how to do exactly that. By no mean that I think that I’m already where I want to be but then again, we are hardest on ourselves. After all, photography is a life training no matter where you are in your career.

Hope you dance

I Hope you never lose a sense of wonder
I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance
Never settle the path of least resistance
May you never take one single breath for granted
And when you get the choice to sit or dance

I hope you dance…………….

Lee Ann Womack

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