Wednesday, 31 March 2010

The Hung

These are installation shots of my first solo show way back in the day.

Nicely unexpectedly arty.

These pics.

Not the show.

That was nicely expectedly unarty.

Sunday, 28 March 2010

The Nottui

Saturday, 27 March 2010

The Tui

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

The Film

It's no secret, though it's probably not widely known either, that Sigur Ros is one of my favourite bands.

So when I saw that they were putting out a book I just had to get me a copy. Admittedly it took me a few months of indecision before biting the bullet, but I did bite the bullet. And it tasted good.

Sadly, upon receipt of said book, I was disappointed. Ostensibly a photographic book, the photos were entirely underwhelming. Sigur Ros have great design sense, but none of that showed in the book. The photos were fine but unexciting. The layout was, quite frankly, dull. So disappointing.

On the plus side, it is a limited edition and it did come with a CD (of which I already had a copy) and a DVD (of which I didn't already have a copy) and a strip of 16mm film from one of the films on the DVD (of which I didn't already have a copy).

The same day I bought Sigur Ros, I found out that Dudley Benson had also just published a limited edition book. So I had to buy that too. Oh well.

It's a better book. A workbook, made after the fact, relating to his debut album and supporting national tour. It's a nice idea. Though Benson openly admits to stealing it off Nigel Brown (I'd like to see his workbooks too).

It's a nice book too. Limited edition. No music or DVD, worse luck. But it does include individual drawings by Hanna Lee who made one of his videos.

Monday, 22 March 2010

The Hello

This series of photos is just a wee welcome to the person or persons in Mountain View, CA, who regularly pops in on this blog.

Not knowing who the person or persons is/are means it's a rather impersonal welcome.

Going through my archive it would appear that even though I spent the best part of a week in San Fran, staying down near Los Altos (I think), I was insufficiently inspired by the city to take much in the way of photos.

So, sadly, the majority of shots from those days were no out little trip to the little bridge.

If you buy me a ticket over and put me up for a few days I promise to take some cool shots of other parts of the metropolis.

So ... hey, how ya doing?

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

The Fashionista

As part of my studies years ago, our class split into groups in order to do a collaborative fashion shoot.

The idea was largely mine and involved using lyrics from pop hits of the day as a subtle pisstake on the whole seriousness of the fashion industry and fashion photography in particular. Though I'm not sure if anybody else picked up on that.

So we had our very girlie model doing dumb things with stereotypically female appliances.

It was hard work cos the model didn't really buy into the idea, and wasn't a natural performer - happy to look all moody fashiony but not so happy to 'act'.

It was kinda fun though. Not that it made me change my mind about fashion photography.

We didn't get a particularly great mark for the assignment, largely because our pics didn't meet the requirement of being in the style of a particular magazine. Even though the magazine we choose had only put out one issue and didn't have anything that could be called a photographic style.

Our group also took many people by surprise by deciding to collaborate with students from the fashion school - at that time in buildings adjacent to photography. It was a constant surprise to me that there was a lack of collaboration between the various schools even though there was an awful lot of crossover - industrial designers need product shots, photographers need graphic design work, etc. and yet students were (and still are) encouraged to do these things for themselves, and not utilise fellow students actually studying in those areas.

Sunday, 14 March 2010

The Trannie

Sometimes, very occasionally, it's surprising what you find lying on the cycle track alongside SH2 between Petone and Wellington.

Like this, for example.

One solitary mounted slide. There was also a broken slide mount but I saw no more slides or bits of film or anything vaguely interesting.

Interesting questions are raised though. Like who? How? Will they even notice?

And, especially, where was the photo taken? From a ridge overlooking a small town with plains in the background. Expound in no less than 300 words. Please.

Saturday, 13 March 2010

The Promotional

This is the first conceptual promotional shot I made using a borrowed camera, borrowed tripod, and a backdrop taken by me a year or so earlier.

I quickly decided it was rubbish. A few months later, when I again needed to produce a promo image, I shot this somewhat more humourous version.

If you have a copy of the card on which this appeared you have in your hands a true rarity.

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

The Bovine

I like cows.

I'm not sure if they like me.

But I don't care.

Monday, 8 March 2010

The Beautiful

It's a bit disconcerting when, for the sake of a free ticket (or two), you are expected to blag your way into pretending that you are some kind of journalist.

Such was the case with 13 Most Beautiful.

As it combined Andy Warhol films and a musician who can be found in my CD collection I really wanted to go to this show. And if it was possible I wanted to go for free (thanks Lumiere).

I wasn't expecting to have to do any work for it. I certainly wasn't expecting to have to do a 'phoner' (journo speak, apparently).

So there I was one Friday morning putting in a call to New York to try and ask some intelligent questions of a guy I had never met, but knew a bit about, about a show which he had been doing for a while and had probably answered these very same questions dozens of times. I'm not entirely convinced I pulled it off. But I did know was that I still wanted to see the show.

Last week, Dean and crew were in Wellington. Dean and Britta did a lunchtime talk at City Gallery. Dean was flogging his memoir. I bought it. He signed it. (Another audience member pulled out a Galaxie 500 7" and a couple of LPs for Dean to sign. It didn't occur to me until then that I could've brought down a CD or two.)

The next day they were performing at the Town Hall. I bought the DVD prior to the show having some inside knowledge that 1) they had only brought over about 30, 2) they would sell fast. After the show Dean and Britta signed it.

You can read my preview and review, and even see some photos (though they all appear to be from soundcheck).

Having procured copies of albums by Dean's first band in preparation for my interview, they have quickly become a favourite. Excitingly reissues are on the way. The DVD and book are both worth checking out, as is this website for a head full of wishes.

Sunday, 7 March 2010

The Rediscoverer

As I'm currently spending my life scanning (and rescanning) films, I'm rediscovering a lot of photos.

That's really no great surprise though. I've taken quite a few over the years and I don't retain a copy of all of them in my head.

That's why I'm currently spending my life scanning (and rescanning) films. So that Lightroom can remember all that shit for me.

Of the many things I have rediscovered is the fact that some decent photos get ignored at the time they were taken.

These three photos were all taken when shooting for a particular series.

None of them were suitable for that particular series. So they were ignored. Only to be rediscovered years later when I was spending my life scanning (and rescanning) films.

Friday, 5 March 2010

The Purchaser

Last year I told a friend I was completely over 35mm. Based on the fact that, once I discovered there were other formats, I didn't really like its 2x3 ratio, nor did I like the lack of detail.

Then I spent a few days over summer scanning a heap of 35mm stuff.

And I decided that it did actually have its place. Especially black and white where the grain made sense.

So I've been buying small cameras again. For the purpose of doing ... um ... shit ... I dunno ... stuff.

But good stuff. In black and white. With masses of grain.

First up was the Canon. It was bigger than I expected. And as the guy I bought it off told me when he gave it to me "it's a good camera, but the motor drive is a bit noisy." It's like a bloody 747!! Funny how no one mentions that in any of the write ups about it. Still nice pics.

Then came the Ixus. An APS camera. Primarily because a friend gave me a bunch of APS films even though I didn't have a camera I could use them in. Having a frame size only 56% that of 35mm this makes for fantastic grain. And somehow the grain in APS film works when it doesn't for 35mm - maybe because at this size is is actually grain and not just annoying lack of detail. Once I got it sorted out properly I started to really like this camera, though it totally lacks the control I would like.

It took a while to turn up, but lastly was the Konica. A styly looking beast. Quite nice, but still lacking. Even if it is an awesome red. And quite inappropriate for sly street photography.

I keep thinking that these point and shoots will have more manual control than they actually do. I especially want some sort of decent focus control. I think what needed to get was the CL listed on TradeMe, but I just don't have those funds available to me at the moment.