Here we go again…

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Three people on three benches in three different worlds
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‘Yeah, I should be doing that’ thinks the road sweeper man, watching the young couple working out.

Well. As the jokes have all dried up, although the ranting continues, (mostly behind the steering wheel!), I have decided to try a new tack. I am slowly morphing into a photographer & so thought, if anyone out there wants to see what I’m currently doing, learning & taking, I’d use me old blog page to put some work up, so you can!

I’ve already uploaded some images, but then had to take them down again as, this silly site that I can’t work properly, wouldn’t let me add any text to tell you what they are! So I’m going to write first & add pictures later. My first four pictures are from London. Anyone heard of Ala.ni? She’s a great new solo singer. She has musicians accompany her as well though. She was a backing singer for people like Mary J Blige & Damon Albarn et al. Now she’s stepping out on her own & my partner & I went to London to see her. the first picture is of her & her band. the next three pictures are some attempts at ‘Street Photography’. I am told that it is perfectly legal to take pictures of people in the street (Like Vivian Maier) for example, this means people going about their everyday business. Not closely focusing on them, like in bedrooms or anything personal obviously, but, well, you’ll see what I mean. If I offend anyone, they only need ask & I will gladly delete any photos of them, that they aren’t happy with. Although I don’t even have to do that, but if they ask me to stop, then I will, but if they say OK to keeping their picture(s) that I have already taken, that’s the best scenario for me. So here goes. I will try to add a little caption to say what’s going on in them. The three pictures were taken in Russell Square Gardens in Camden, London back in June of this year. Please feel free to tell me what you think of them. There now, two pictures that should have been down the bottom, ended up above the other two. How on Earth does this site work? If anyone likes this post & wants to see more. Then more there shall be. I take pictures in all categories, although portraits are rare & don’t expect to see any ‘nudes’ for some time to come! I hope to hear from you all soon… In case you were wondering, all photography on this page is my own work. Promise!

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Ala.ni & her band
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Smiley girl on phone & young couple (noticing me) behind
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I wanna scare ya!

Okay. I know it’s not really scary but, trying to become a better photographer, I’ve been updating my ‘tweaking’ skills. You know, playing around with a photo and coming up with something completely different. Well almost. I took a few pictures of a local Cathedral’s cloisters and kept messing around with one of them until I turned it into this:

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(It’s quite a nice Cathedral, but I wouldn’t say it’s one of my favourite haunts). I tried to get it finished in time for Halloween, but missed out by a whole week! Never mind. I still have a long way to go learning wise, but I got loads of likes, peer awards and praise for it on a photo sharing site, so I’m pretty much on cloud nine at the moment. No wonder I’m missing out on blogging so much! Hope you like it.

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I have recently discovered why I am not a better photographer than I am. This is partly due to the above photograph that I took last night. It is a picture of the remnants of sunset, as I sped along towards Norwich in Norfolk, UK and was taken through the car’s windscreen. I hasten to add that my partner was driving, so no need to worry about this photographer living dangerously! As you can see, in the picture, there are two of our local telephone lines atop a telegraph pole. The pole was built and erected sometime during the last century, probably pre-1960! This is the problem. Although Norfolk has loads of great pictures just lying around waiting for people to take them, I can’t seem to find any new ones and so usually end up with something like this. On a photo-site that I subscribe to, there are many of the worlds great sites, taken from many different angles & tweaked to perfection by their ‘takers’. As great as Norfolk is, we don’t have a Golden Gate Bridge or huge rocky outcrops, there are no ‘Uluru’s or Sydney Opera Houses. No Amalfi coastlines or great Hagia Sophia type temples. So all I can do is take pictures of the things we have locally. Some people are lucky to live near many great views or architecture. Norfolk is beautiful, I don’t deny that, but I have just travelled abroad recently and it will be quite a while until I can do it again. So Norfolk will just have to do for now. We have a pier at Cromer from where this photograph of mine comes: DSC00670 But once you’ve taken it as many times as I have, it becomes a bit ‘samey’. Maybe I’ve lived here too long and need a change? I see many people who enter photo competitions have the same pictures as each other. Obviously they can manage to travel to the worlds top photo sites. I am usually too busy for that though. We can all take pictures of the moon though can’t we? DSC00512 (2) Yes, that’ll do and there’s no need to travel. I recently took a few shots of it while in Mallorca, but couldn’t see any difference. So to be a ‘top’ photographer, you need ‘top’ money and the time to spend travelling around. I don’t have either of those and so will just have to make do with what I have here and the odd trip out to different places. Please excuse the title at the top. I haven’t forgotten to add one, just that somehow “Enter title here” fits perfectly, as I have no idea what to call my post this week. I also think that my camera hinders me a bit, as somehow a DSLR makes everything look better, so maybe I’ll go back and take all the same old pictures of the same old things, but make them look better, when I get my first one, hopefully soon. I’m currently trying to get into portraits too. So maybe this new direction will open up new photographic opportunities. I never take ‘selfies’ though, I can’t afford to break the camera I have just yet!

Okay. Now hold that pose, smile and say smelly old English mature cheddar CHEESE! See you next week.

The sky’s the limit!

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I chose the picture of the young lady above, as she represents a bit of this weeks subject, RULES! A couple of years ago, I travelled with my partner on a trip to places afar, for a short break. Always wanting to ‘do the right thing’ (stupidly of course), I asked the lady at the airport information desk if it was OK for me to use my camera within the terminal, or outside or even on the plane. She informed me that I could take pictures of my partner and myself, as long as we were against a blank wall only and not showing any part of the terminal building, that could identify it as being an airport. She also said that if I did take pictures of anything else, inside or out, my camera would be ‘confiscated’ and probably not ever returned! I asked why that was and she just said “Well you did ask”. I noticed people all over the airport pointing their cameras and mobiles all over the place, taking pictures of this and that and not following any such ‘rules’. I thought it was a bit rude of her to talk to me like that, when I had asked so politely and felt sure that she just didn’t like the look of me! As everyone else was getting away with it. I see that it is getting more difficult to do exactly what I was asking to do, due to terrorism these days. However, what I probably would have had pictures of, would have been a few walls and seats, maybe the odd poster or two, which were only adverts and were all over the country anyway and even on TV! Also, I may have caught a shot or two, of say a Boeing 737 or possibly an Airbus A320 and they are ‘top secret’ aircraft which no-one has ever seen before, aren’t they? Cynical? Who, me? Well maybe a bit.

Also, the rules aboard aircraft are very strict, but again, are mostly ignored. You should have your mobile or camera either turned off, or on ‘flight mode’ or any other such device that can send or receive things, until you land I suppose. I noticed on my most recent trip though, that no-one takes the slightest notice of these rules and people were simply ‘covering up’ their mobiles, while playing games or sending messages as the cabin crew walked past, in the same way that naughty schoolchildren cover up their funny drawing of the size of their teacher’s nose etc. You aren’t supposed to film the take-off or landing of the airplane either, as this would mean having the device switched on, when it should be switched off, or so I have been told. I see however, that there is one chap who seems to fly everywhere in the whole world and even has a YouTube channel, where he posts videos of all of these flights! (There are also thousands of other such videos, by many different people). Yet he obviously hasn’t been to my local airport ever, as they would simply confiscate his camera and throw him in jail! Or so I have been led to believe. (I think the rules aboard aircraft are meant to stop airplanes crashing, due to all these signals interfering with instruments or something. I think if planes were crashing and people dying from it, then MAYBE they would do as they are told)? So maybe that’s just another ‘line’ they feed us. Maybe.

I can understand that we must have rules and I (boringly) follow most of them. We don’t want terrorists getting hold of any secret information about a small, regional airport now, do we? I’m sure there could even be something that they shouldn’t see. But if these ARE strict rules that must be obeyed at all times, then WHY aren’t they being upheld and adhered to?

On a slightly lighter note, On the earlier trip of I which I spoke, my partner who is a wheelchair user, had been told to wait at the side of the bit where everyone has to go through the sort of X-ray machine. Having been put right in view of one of the observers screens, she was having a rare old time apparently and told me later that, when people pass through it, she could see an awful lot more of each person than you are led to believe! These machines seemingly leave nothing to the imagination as, when I went to retrieve her, having had my ‘go’ in this machine, she had quite a red face! I just hope that there aren’t any weirdos applying for this job, as they would be getting paid for ‘peeping’ as it were! The other implications of this are many and varied, but I don’t even like to think about them!

Oh well, must fly. Please have all passports, boarding passes and selfie-sticks at the ready!