Monday, 31 May 2010

Mario Popham.

Image copyright Mario Popham.
I've been working on some of my own photographs lately where I've been trying to capture a particular kind of British light. Jem Southam of course is a master at it, but Manchester based Mario Popham also captures it beautifully with his ongoing series 'TRACK RECORD'. "It's an ancient and subtle kind of light filled with melancholy", if I wanted to go all poetic on yer ass.

Andy Clarke.

Image copyright Andy Clarke.

Following on from the CUMBRIA photography post (below but one) Andy Clarke one of said students now has his website up, and some fine British landscapes can be seen there.

Saint Obama has been remarkably quiet about all THIS. Perhaps his thoughts on it are just not being reported over here. I know the EU are going to give Israel a stiff talking to. Good job they don't have any of them there 'Weapons of mass destruction' or they would really be in trouble. They do? Right then perhaps the EU should come down hard on them and push to ban Israel from next years EUROVISION SONG CONTEST........

Sunday, 30 May 2010

I've been following the photography course at Cumbria for a while. It's led by Mike England and features amongst other teachers John Darwell. The details of this years graduate show are above (click to enlarge). You can check out the work of the photographers featured HERE.

Thursday, 27 May 2010

Picasso: PEACE + FREEDOM @ Tate Liverpool.

Sunny if a bit chilly in the land of the Scouse monkey today. Tenner in but you got a useful little booklet giving some background on the sections in the exhibition and there's plenty of sections and loads of work starting as you arrive. With some films and a chronological breakdown of Picasso's activities both political and how this transferred to his work during the war and after when war got cold. Whether intended or not your entrance to the main exhibition way up in the heart of Tate, up on the forth floor you arrive after a short five minute wait. It was pure theatre. You are taken up in a huge goods lift. The doors are slung open for you to enter a room containing 'THE CHARNEL HOUSE' (1945) a wow moment, or it would of been if not for the screaming brat. When I am King I will introduce 'NO Kid Thursdays' to all galleries enforced on pain of death. So non of the peace rubbed off on me then. Anyway where was I oh yes.
The exhibition contains so many facets of Picasso's work during this time, Prints, pottery, sculpture and of course painting. They've even got a section of a wall from a house in London that Picasso drew on during a visit to Britain in the 50s. The Dove of Peace is everywhere. 'Mothers & Musketeers' (see above) two motifs that obsessed Picasso in his final years I loved, a condensing of the idea of war & Peace, good & evil.
Worth a tenner? Fuck yeah. You aren't going to see this many Picasso's together that often in the UK so yes a world class exhibition just down the road. It was well put together and gimmick free, they left it up to the work to talk and not, say a pair of Picasso's old pants in a glass case like so many galleries seem to love these days.
So great then, which begs the question why are Tate Liverpools stewards so fucking miserable? Jesus smile, you're surrounded by genius, you should try standing next to THIS sentimental guff all day.....
Picasso: PEACE & FREEDOM until 30th August. Now that's what I call a summer show.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

'Brass Neck'

Image copyright Mark Page

A ZERO TOLERANCE Sticker on a window at Manchester Town hall. The same Town hall where Sir Richard Leese was reinstated last week as leader of the City Council.....

I'm Glad.

So they've scrapped the money for the Victoria station refit. I'm bloody glad. Now of course it needs a good clean up. Kick out McDonalds and the shitty Hotdog stand, clean the toilets and get rid of 'The cottagers' and heyho you are left with a building designed by George Stephenson and not some hybrid steel and glass fuck up that looks like every other station, which lets face it that's what would have happened. Check out the green and red railings in the middle part of the station thought to be the original boundary of an 18th century cemetery. Now come on that's got to be worth more than a 'COSTA COFFEE' and paying 30p for a piss.

Monday, 24 May 2010

When We Was Young.

Image copyright Derek Ridgers

There's loads of celebrity portraits mainly famous 'pop' types over on Derek Ridgers Site, But it's his brilliantly direct portraits of British Youth tribes of the 80's that I love looking at, even if they do pour petrol on my burning mid-life crisis....

PS He's also self published a book of his SKINHEAD portraits over on blurb.

Sunday, 23 May 2010

OPEN CITY Photography Day.

That's my group at the end of our two hour session photographing in Manchester city centre as part of the OPEN CITY day. I think we had a good time, I know I certainly enjoyed myself. I had to laugh when we got back to base and Len Grant who was running one of the other groups said that he went up to one fella in town and thinking that they were part of the day starting giving this bloke some tips only to find that he was just a random tourist and nothing to do with our day at all!
It's going to be a proper scorcher tomorrow. I shall be walking about town with some of you coz it's 'OPEN CITY' workshop day. Bring water or maybe cold beer in a cool bag......

Saturday, 22 May 2010

Mr Parr Superstar.

Image copyright Martin Parr

I can feel a trip to the land of lentil farts and women with hairy legs coming on. Yes Hebden Bridge (It's like Chorlton but with scenery) is on my itinerary for a summer visit to to see an exhibition of Mr Parrs pictures taken while he lived there back in the 70s. It will be a rare chance to see more of his B/W stuff. Running from 12th June through till 11th July at Festival Box Office and Gallery,
Albert Street, Hebden Bridge
Mon to Sat 10.30am-5pm, Sun 12pm-5pm
for more details.

Coming Up For Air.

Image copyright Stephen Gill

Besides making me smile more than almost any other photographer I also love his engagement with the art of the photobook. HERE'S a new one from Gill. You can see the series HERE on his website. The plastic camera is out again this time gently extracting humour from Japan.

Monday, 17 May 2010

Rita Soromenho.

Image Rita Soromenho

Twelve months. Twelve bloody months I've been going to POMONA taking pictures and collecting flowers for pressing. Twelve months and then I go and bloody well see this! OK so the series 'Peripatetic' is not the same but it does have similarities and she made this 3 years ago! There's the connection to Victorian hobbies there's the actual collecting of shrubs, there's the act of making the journey oh yeah and they are both old words beginning with 'P'!
None of this matters of course because I really like this series and the work of Rita Soromenho I like the sense of place and journey that is an important element to her photography. I can relate to that. So Rita I salute you "Great minds" and all of that.

The Original.

Click on the flyer above to find out more about another opportunity to get involved in a photofestival, this time the original quintessential British photography festival, Hereford. £15 again submission. £5 dearer than FORMAT with a closing date sooner (1st May) I can't afford or justify both so I have to way up. Bet I'm not the only one that has to make these kind of decisions? I can't remember so many calls and open submissions from festivals as I have this year. Obviously a good revenue stream. I'm just saying it must earn a few quid.

Friday, 14 May 2010

Friday Night Chill.

Chet Baker in Tokyo ' 87 - My Funny Valentine
Click Above!

It's Friday night. Pour yourself a big glass or a big one of whatever your poison is and kick back with Chet. Cheers Tom for introducing me...... To Chet not drink and drugs I already knew all about tham.

Peter Bialobrzeski.

Images copyright Peter Bialobrzeski
Take a look at these beautifully futuristic landscapes by Peter Bialobrzeski from his series 'Paradise Now' landscapes from across South East Asia. So landscapes from now. They just look like futuristic worlds to my old fashion Western eyes. Bloody hell I still think the Beetham Tower's something!? I was going to try and pass the top shot off as The Mancunian Way.........
That's two German photographers in as many nights I've featured here, people will start to think this is one of them clever European blogs.......... No fecking chance I hear you shout.

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Joscha Bruckert.

Image copyright Joscha Bruckert
Joscha Bruckert is a proper busy little German bunny. Founder and editor of the mag for the orphan photo ROMKA he also has a new book out, called 'A Man Sat Alone In His Room' not to mention THIS project which I could probably supply all the material needed on my own! Check out out his slightly busy but definitely interesting website.

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Mitch Griffiths

Bit of a buzz going on about THIS fella's paintings at the moment. Think Pre-Raphaelites with Big Macs, consumerism and plastic tits. Modern day Hogarth perhaps?
Photo-realism painting that's an odd fruit isn't it? Would these work if they were photographs rather than paintings? Does the paint add something other than the 'fuck me he's clever' factor? I guess they are like grand religious paintings for 21st century. I don't think they would work as well as photographs, for me the tradition of oil on canvas adds...

Right Here, Right Now: Exposures From The Public Realm.

Exhibition opportunity here folks. If you have a project on the go that kinda fits the above title, this might be worth a punt (and the now almost obligatory submission charge). It's a call to be included in next years FORMAT FESTIVAL in Derby. HERE for details.

Lets Get Ready To Rumble........

Is it me or has British politics taken a funny turn?

Monday, 10 May 2010
I've just added a permanent link to to the right hand side of the blog. That's an honor that I reserve for organisations that I feel are worthwhile and useful and mainly Manchester based. I can make judgement calls like that at manchesterphotography what with being both monkeyman and organ grinder. is a "collaborative project aimed at increasing exposure for Manchester as a cultural destination." So worthy cause. Don't forget to include us little people in your plans! Link HERE to a review on the site of David Osbaldeston's show at Castlefield Gallery written by Susie Stubbs. Right then can I have a link on your site? I'll scratch your back and all of that........

Stray Dog.

Another little film clip of the great Daido Moriyama (or is it Moriyama Daido?) at work and also talking about his methods, reasons and work. Part Zen some Jazz and a hint of beat poet. Joy. If you're coming to 'Open City' on the 23rd May think of it as a training video!

Sunday, 9 May 2010

OK so we finished second but What a season for our Wayne. As the banners say "THE WHITE PELE" Next year we will fulfil the promise that Sir Alex made 20 odd years ago to "Knock Liverpool off their fucking perch"

MIke Stephens

Image copyright Mike Stephens

It never ceases to amaze me how many good photographers we have here in the North-West. Mike Stephens a lecturer at Trafford College is no exception. 'ABSENT, NO FITS' is a very personnel project looking at questions of perception and memory arising from his experience as someone who has epileptic seizures. Read more about the work HERE.

Friday, 7 May 2010

press release! 'OPEN CITY'

Image copyright Mark Page

"Five renowned Manchester photographers are taking part in an afternoon which is aimed at working towards Manchester being an ‘open city’ for photography. Organised by Cityco, Manchester ’s City Centre management company, 100 Manchester Confidential readers will be taken on a free two hour photography tour around the city on Sunday 23 May.

Manchester aspires to be a photography-friendly and accessible place where people don’t get hassled or arrested for taking pictures. We’re talking to the authorities to work together to move towards us becoming an ‘open city’.

Photographers, who include Aidan O’Rourke, Andrew Brooks, Len Grant, Paul Herrmann and Mark Page will each take a group of budding amateur snappers on a themed photography workshop and a selection of the best images will form an exhibition to be held in the Triangle shopping centre in June. Each photographer has his own unique style, and is passionate about the city, and together they are helping to make Manchester a destination for photography
CONTINUE READING HERE. and then click again past ad!

I'm proper pleased to be involved in this after all the bollocks about people getting stopped and hassled left right and center. I'm pleased and proud that Manchester is taking the initiative and positively promoting itself as a photography friendly city.
Image copyright Mark Page

Yeah well you can fuck up the polling at the General Election but they better not mess up the voting on the above in a few weeks time or The British public may get really annoyed.........

Funny as Fuck Friday's, UK Polling Chaos & Hung Parliaments.

Monday, 3 May 2010

What is England?

Image copyright Marcus Doyle

The next edition of the online project WHAT IS ENGLAND? is now online. This time the brief is 'Group'. I've picked my old mate Marcus Doyle's picture from Cumbria to illustrate.
Got a long term Documentary/fine art project that you think the world should see? Is it in the bag or just well under way? Well THIS is a great chance (for a few $$$$ of course) to get your work seen by a much wider audience, DAYLIGHT MAGAZINE is a heavyweight publication and the judges for this include Alec Soth and Darius Himes. Should you win you'll also get a Stateside solo show and published in the mag! Closing date 15th May, so get a wiggle on.

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Seperated At Birth?

Mrs Weasley and Hazel Blears. Please for Gods sake if you live in Salford and vote HERE. Help get this at best, incompetent and at worst, corrupt fucker out.

Meeting Nice People.

One of the nice things about photography is the nice people you get to meet. Like Ian & kids enjoying PAMONA when I was making pictures there the other day.

Saturday, 1 May 2010

Leon Foggit.

Image copyright Leon Foggit.

Quickie tonight what with Bank holiday , I meant post Oo Er misses. Couples by Leon Foggit. Not that much info on his website but more HERE. Nice portraits but an unfortunate surname for a photographer..................