Capturing Things That I See

Some images from the week 21st to 27th May

These first two images are my eldest son Nathan. Whenever I look at a person through a lens, it all gets so complex, from the simple questions like which eye do I focus on, to how to resolve this disconnect that appears between how the person seems to me and how they appear to the camera. I feel that when I turn the camera on myself that doesn’t matter so much, I can live with, and to some extent enjoy a certain amount of misrepresentation. These were part of a series shot for exercise 5.1, in which we are asked to use the camera as a device to measure distance.

Nathan (3 of 5)

Nathan (1 of 1)

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This wasn’t included in the exercise, and shows another, more lighthearted, side of Nathan. Of course, it is also photographic evidence of the fact that he cannot stop eating.

I’d taken some images in Bournemouth last week, and I found myself repeating the same ideas this week. I am thinking about my fifth assignment and I took these because I have been considering asking the synagogue about the possibility of taking some photos there. I wanted to get the surroundings, get a sense of the place in which it is situated. I am also thinking about exploring Bournemouth as a subject a bit more. It seems to have this peeling veneer of splendour – a leftover from Victorian times – that I think is beginning to reveal something interesting underneath. As it’s the beginning of summer and the tourists are on the way, it also seems like the right time to think about how the town is influenced by different influxes of people – tourists who come for the beaches and countryside, and students that come for the universities and language schools. I want to get an idea of the areas that are not represented in the traditional images of the town.

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Music on the industrial estate

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Queue on the roundabout

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First view from the car park

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Second view from the car park, synagogue windows in the background

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Yellow cab and two people; a view from the churchyard

These are from St Peter’s Church in Bournemouth; I’ve taken some photos of the interior on a previous occasion and I also took images here last week. I first visited this church during art class as we came here to sketch. I will have nightmares about that forevermore. Mary Shelley is buried here so it attracts visitors. Again, a place that might be worth exploring in more detail.

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I didn’t go out to make images this week, it was more about capturing certain things that I see. This is a shot of my peace lily. The window was open and the light and leaves were moving around in beautiful patterns. The movement has made it hard to get a sharp image, but I like the light and shadow here.

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I’ll be honest, I’m not sure which cat this is; I have two black cats, Atlas and Apollo – they’re brothers. I took the opportunity to practice a few different ways of framing him while he was still.

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The first thing I see in the morning

Occasionally I take short online courses; at the moment I’m taking one on the science of happiness. I’ve read a lot about the science of happiness, but I realise that I don’t put into practice what I learn. I know that I will not feel happy all of the time, it’s impossible.  Most of the time I feel content and I feel very strong, despite the occasional panic attack when I feel hemmed in and constrained. But it’s good to be reminded of how the mind works and to reflect on these ideas occasionally. Since I’ve been on EYV I have found that I’m a lot happier even though I know that from the outside some people will say that things are going wrong; the process of change is not a smooth one, but I find that it is a process that I appreciate and need.

As far as happiness is concerned, I think my conclusion is that in photography I now have a creative outlet that I can fully utilise and that it’s also an outlet that enables me to explore new subjects all of the time. There is nothing that I cannot find an excuse to learn about now, because the subject of photography is essentially encompassing every single aspect of life for me. And I can also do this in a creative way. If you visit the Via Institute on Character you can take an online test that gives you a list of your character strengths; the idea is that you will be happiest if you use these strengths every day. These are mine.

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