Top Spot on 500px!

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I don’t normally use my blog to shout about my own photographic achievements, but I thought this one deserved a mention. Two weeks ago this photo took the top spot on 500px; no mean feat considering the intense competition from all the landscapes and fashion images which generally have more mass appeal. Agreed it was only for a couple of hours at most, but it made it!

It’s a Small World

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Compare this to an image posted by my WP friend Melinda Green Harvey last week. It is a different composition, but taken from almost the same spot in San Antonio, Texas, no more than two weeks apart. Now, I believe Melinda lives in Texas, but considering Texas is 3 times the size of England where I live, this is quite a coincidence. It really is a small world!

Show me the colour

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Sometimes converting images to black and white works, sometimes not. in this case I had little choice, as the steel structure was very monochrome. In fact, going back to the unedited file, I can’t tell if I ever converted it, although there may have been a slight cyan cast in the shadows.

Highway Wilderness

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I had just spent a few hours wandering the city streets for inspiration and I was on my way back to my hotel when I spotted this image. The first problem was I was driving along a highway so had to take the next exit, and then back to the location. The second problem was, trying to find a suitable place to stop as the location was right next to a highway exit. Having driven around a few times, I did find somewhere to stop, but then there was the third problem, finding somewhere to stand to compose my photo!

You goin’ to the mission bro?

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As a rule I dress down when wandering the city streets in search of good photographic subjects. I try not to look like a tourist, or that I am carrying around expensive camera gear. When I was asked last week by two homeless people if I was going to the (homeless) mission, I realised my deception was working!

I don’t know!

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If had been paying more attention at the time, I would have made a mental note of what the orange thing was in that window. As it was, and as it usually is, I was paying more attention to composition and to finding the right spot to take the photo. Now I am curious and must go back when I am next in that city!

White Windows

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This may look like part of an industrial building, but in fact this was residential. Thankfully the sun was so bright that the residents had closed their blinds, otherwise I feel the scene would have been ruined, at least from a minimal photography perspective.

Minimalism is like Marmite

…Marmite back in Tesco!
This is a reblog of my very first post on WP. Then, I felt it necessary to explain to those outside the UK what Marmite was. To best explain the relevance of this reblog today, just do a google search for ‘Marmite Tesco’

stu ART photo

 

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For those of you who don’t know, Marmite is a famous British branded yeast extract spread. It has lovers and haters, and not much in between. The manufacturers even use this love/hate relationship as a feature of their advertising.

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In the shade on this one

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This was the first attempt at capturing this image, and really liked it. However, the wall was in shade, so I decided I needed to go back when the light would be casting a shadow. The time I calculated to be best was 7.30am, so the next day I crawled out of my bed and trekked the 2 miles to the scene. My calculations were correct, as light was casting a shadow, but the shadow was uneven and very displeasing to look at, so I stuck with my first image.

 

Shadowy Existence

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This is one of those rare images where I have re-visited a location to take further photographs. I was not happy with the first attempt. Thankfully was back in the city a year later, and actually remembered where the building was!

Get over that security fencing

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While this wall was very interesting to me as a minimalist photographer, I felt it needed something else to lift it . I tried including some some of the wall’s windows, but that didn’t seem to work. Finally, I decided to include some of the roof security fencing, which to my eyes contrasted nicely with the wall and the Californian blue sky in the background.

Four-eyed monster

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I am a real sucker for ‘I can see a face’ images. This one I ‘found’ on a fairly uneventful stroll around a dull and grey city. Thankfully the bricks on the wall were white, which nicely contrasted with the blue of the door and vents.

Simplism

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It is difficult to know how far to go with minimalism. Taking out too much detail can lead to blandness, whilst leaving in the detail can be distracting. In this image the intent was to see just how much detail I could remove to keep visual interest. For me this works, the essential part of the image being slight imperfections in the wall to compliment the simple composition.

‘Let’s make it look interesting’

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It never ceases to amaze me the lengths that architects will go to in making a drab walls look interesting. This was the side of an industrial building, away from public gaze and, to the best of my knowledge, the pattern did not serve any practical purpose other than to please the eye.

On Parade

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More often than not I am trying to avoid trees and other street ‘obstacles’ in order to get a clean view of my intended subject. Not here. The sun was at a perfect angle,  with the ‘on parade’ trees bathed in brightness, providing superb contrast with the shaded wall.

Wheel of Fortune

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Ferris wheels as tourist attractions are becoming a common site in many cities around the world . This is a reflection of the one in downtown Atlanta, the distortions in the reflective glass making it look quite surrreal. Fortunately I caught the light at the right time!

Retail Therapy

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Much to the disappointment of my wife, like the vast majority of men I know I do not enjoy shopping, unless it is for cameras or electronics of course! I would sooner be outside the shop taking photographs, as in this particular case.

Is my obsession unhealthy?

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When I am in a city, I often meet and converse with fellow photographers, but never do I see any when wandering around industrial estates at the weekend, as those of you who read my blog reglulary know I do. I was therefore wondering if this was an unhealthy obsession of mine?

The Big Shadow

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I often feature shadows in my images. Maybe my fascination with deep shadows is because they are a rarity here in the UK. Thankfully I get to travel to countries where the sun is not such a mysterious object in the sky.

Not all there

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The title doesn’t refer to my mental state, although there are some who would agree. No, the title is in reference to the ‘incomplete’ window in this image. Often in minimal compositions it is better not include the whole subject in a frame, to add intrigue and emphasise the abstraction.

Grilles

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This image is part of a series of images featuring that ever popular subject of ventilation grilles, which is a subset of my Industrial Minimalism series. I think I spend an unhealthy amount of time at the weekends wandering around deserted industrial estates!

Sihouettes and Shadows

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Although I rarely take photos of people, when I do, as in this image they are normally disguised by shadow or as a silhouette. From this spot I took in the region of 100 photos, and this is the only one where the subjects were in the right place and the shadows and silhouettes were, in my opinion, balanced just right.

Wall Mirror

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I often enhance colour in my images, but rarely change it. The exception is converting to black and white or, as in this case, desaturating part of the image. I felt that by doing this it highlighted the reflected image, which contrasts nicely against the ‘grey’ wall.

Connected, or not….

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One of the beautiful things about photography is the way the camera lens can be used to decieve the eye. In this image it could look like the shutters are connected to the arch. However, the tight composition and wide depth of field are used in the deception. In reality, there was something like 50 feet between the two, and were from completely different structures.

It’s Those Little Things…

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I loved this wall; the colour was fantastic, as was the texture and those super white stripes as architectural features. However, for me it was the inclusion and placement of the small vent that was crucial to the composition. Thank goodness functionality took precedence over aesthetics!