Architecture, art, Ireland, Landscapes, Leica, Photography, photojournalism

Poolbeg Power Station Chimney Stacks: Should They Stay or Go?

There has been some debate lately as to whether the, now closed, Poolbeg Power Station chimney stacks should be demolished.

The stacks are a landmark of Dublin city, but would resources be better spent elsewhere rather than on the structural repair and upkeep of these icons? Only a few years a go Dublin’s iconic Ballymun towers were demolished. Should all iconic buildings / architectural features be preserved? One designer suggested making a skybridge, turning the stacks into a tourist attraction similar to the London Eye or Sydney Opera House. Personally, I think they should be turned into launch towers, somewhere we can fire or catapult all the corrupt politicians into outer space – which is where many of them seem to already inhabit!

What do you think?

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This photo was taken in 2010, on another icon; a Leica M6 loaded with 17yrs out of date Kodachrome.

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art, Ireland, Leica, Photography, photojournalism

Poultry Section

Photo taken at the Bannow & Rathangan Agricultural Show 2010 – on one of my long expired last rolls of Kodachrome (1993). At the time I was under the influence of street photography, looking for interesting situations that maybe included an element of humour.

I still have a few rolls  of Kodachrome left in the fridge. I only wish I had shot loads more with it while it was still processed by Kodak.

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Ireland, Landscapes, Photography

Landscapes: The Burrow, Kilmore Quay

Final Project: Landscapes.

I took a walk along a local nature reserve: The Burrow. It is a great place to go for a walk or run, and get away from the stress of modern life. To spend time in close contact with nature is always refreshing.

My main reason was to just get out and take some photos as part of initial experimentation on the final project. Perhaps the project will deal with issues of land and ownership. Property and land ownership is a big issue in Ireland, and I wonder is there anywhere in the world where land ownership is not an issue?

Maybe the project will deal with issues of ownership, use of land, and who gets to use the land. Its not quite the direction I initially had in mind for the project, but sometimes you just have to go with the flow and see where it leads you.

Ideally I would like to do this project with a 6×7 or 6×9 medium format film camera. the images below were taken with a Leica M6 and some expired Fujicolor 200 film I picked up in a car boot sale for next to nothing. I do like how Fujicolor film brings out the greens.

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Photography, photojournalism, Uncategorized

Flight Of The Swallow

Summer is nearly upon us – although here in Ireland it currently feels more like November.

It must be nearly a month ago when I spotted the arrival of the Swallows. They never fail to stop me in my tracks. To watch them flit and speed through the air is pure delight, their distinct chirping chatter heralding the coming of Summer.

Two years ago I attempted to capture some of their energy on film. Its only when one tries to photograph a Swallow with a manual focus film camera that one realises just how incredibly fast they move. I felt slow and clumsy as the little bundles of pure energy danced and darted around me, making me dizzy.

Some recurring themes in my photography are identity, space, and time, and I think these photos explore something of the transience of the seasons, light, and indeed, our own lives.ImageImageImageImage

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Architecture, ghost estates, Photography

A sense of Place (Ghost Estates)

Some of the photos I have been posting here as part of my Ghost Estate (temporary title) series have perhaps been a little too descriptive. What I am trying to achieve with the photos is to convey a sense of place, an atmosphere, and to use the phrase again, something just beneath the surface.

There is a very fine line between descriptive and suggestive (if that is the right word). During a recent tutorial where I was showing a very loose edit of around 80 photos,  a fellow student suggested that there are opportunities for two projects in the collection: It all comes down to editing. I could choose a set of photos that are great, and descriptive, and have immediate visual impact. Or, I could choose a set using my intuition, my feelings, and perhaps take a few chances.

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Architecture, ghost estates, Photography, photojournalism

Ghost Estates, Success Rates, and Taking Chances.

I am being reasonably conservative with my shooting – finances are tight – and if I were shooting digital I would probably shoot off at least a hundred frames per location. As it is I’m going through on average a roll (36 exposures) per location, depending on interesting features, lighting, time constraints, etc.

So far I have shot around ten rolls of film for the Ghost Estate photo project; thats around 360 photos. If I get three or four good shots per roll I’m reasonably happy.

That seems like a pretty low success rate, and maybe it is, perhaps I should be aiming higher. The problem with film is that each frame is a risk. Sometimes what you thought would be a great photo (at time of shooting) turns out to be mediocre. And sometimes you take a chance and hope for the best, and you might get lucky. What you see in front of you is not always what the camera sees.

Taking a good photo is relatively easy – with practice. Taking consistently good photos that reflect your true intentions is a totally different ball game. You win some, you lose some.

One, possibly two of the photos below might make the final edit.

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