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Colour Me Unique: Celebrating Individuality Through Fashion

  Fashion with attitude (full story here ) I wanted to share my latest personal project with you and get some feedback from you, dear valued reader. In today's world, individuality and self-expression are highly valued, and one of the ways people choose to express themselves is through fashion. The clothes we wear can speak volumes about our personality, mood, and even our individual journey. Each of us is unique, and the way we dress reflects that. As a photographer, I wanted to capture this essence of individuality and self-expression through fashion and colour. In this series of portraits, I aimed to showcase a diverse range of people from different cultural and social backgrounds, highlighting their unique styles and personality. My subjects come from all walks of life, and I wanted to showcase the beauty and power of their individuality. The way we dress is a form of self-expression, and I wanted to capture that in a visually stunning and emotionally evocative way. Each photog
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Embracing Japanese aesthetics: Nine principles that will change the way you think about photography

From the refined elegance of tea ceremonies to calligraphy and the simple yet complex beauty of Zen gardens, Japanese aesthetics offer a unique perspective on the nature of beauty and its relationship to our environment, emotions, and sense of self. But can we apply these aesthetics to photography? In this blog, we'll explore nine fundamental Japanese aesthetic principles and seek to answer this question. First, here's a summary of the Japanese aesthetic principles we will cover: Kanso: The principle of simplicity, clarity, and cleanliness. Fukinsei: The principle of asymmetry, irregularity, and balance. Shibui/Shibumi: The principle of simplicity, understatedness, and refined elegance. Seijaku: The principle of stillness, silence, and tranquillity. Datsuzoku: The principle of spontaneity, freedom, and detachment. Yugen: The principle of mystery, depth, and subtlety. Shizen: The principle of naturalness, spontaneity, and harmony with nature. Wabi Sabi: The principle of embracin

What is street photography?

  She nipped to the shop in her nightgown to buy some washing detergent.  A lot of people try to define street photography. Here is my view. Street photographers often aim to document the human condition and the social, cultural, and political aspects of the places and communities they photograph. Street photography can be spontaneous and candid, with the photographer capturing unplanned or unscripted moments as they unfold, or it can be more planned and staged, with the photographer seeking out specific subjects or compositions to photograph.  Street photographers typically capture images of people, architecture, and other elements of the urban environment, often with an emphasis on capturing the atmosphere and energy of the place. Street photography can be documentary, capturing real life as it unfolds, as in the case of the lady returning from her errand, or more artistic and expressive, exploring themes and ideas through photography. It is also amusing to see the reactions of the g

Practicing the Zen of Photography

  I turned the corner and saw this light pouring across the veranda at Kenninji, the oldest Zen Buddhism temple in Kyoto, Japan.  What is the Zen of Photography? The Zen of photography is a way of approaching photography that emphasises mindfulness, simplicity, and the present moment. At its core, it is about using photography to cultivate awareness and connect with the world around us. One of the fundamental principles of the Zen of photography is to approach photography with a beginner's mind. This means letting go of preconceptions and judgments and approaching each moment with an open and curious attitude. It is about seeing the world with fresh eyes as if seeing it for the first time. Another important aspect of the Zen of photography is to focus on the moment. This means being fully present and engaged in the act of taking a photograph and not getting caught up in thoughts or distractions. It involves letting go of the past and the future and fully immersing oneself in the pr

Understanding wabi-sabi and photography

Wabi-sabi is a Japanese aesthetic concept that has fascinated many Westerners who have tried to encapsulate its meaning in a neat definition. I have delved into its meaning as I learn more about Japan as I explore the country and culture in my photographs. Levels going down to the dry stone garden in Keninji, Kyoto. In Japan, the concept is well recognised, but I think Japanese people are comfortable with a more vague and ambiguous notion of what it means. The ideas and definition of wabi-sabi have changed over the centuries and continue to evolve. Literal translations are not useful, and as far as I know, you can't look the word up in the Japanese dictionary. The closest literal translation you can probably get is something like 'humble simplicity'. Based on what I have read, here are some of the key concepts that seem consistent and inform my vision of what wabi-sabi means: Impermanence - everything is in a state of continual change. Nothing remains the same. Imperfectio

Photographing a dancer

We spent a wonderful afternoon doing a photoshoot with ballet instructor Christian Dedeene at dance school Rose De Leyn in Brugge, Belgium. I worked with Christian as he free-styled an impromptu choreographed piece for me. He was moving quickly. I worked with the available light, going with the flow. Technically it was challenging as I tried to balance keeping the ISO as low as possible against a high enough shutter speed to keep everything sharp.  I think our collaboration produced some interesting images. These images tell a story and are some of my favourites because of the gestures and intensity.  Before becoming a dance teacher, highlights of Christian's career included five years as solo and star dancer with Maurice Béjart's company.  Béjart was one of the greatest choreographers of the last century, and Christian says he learnt a vast amount from the maestro. Christian regularly performs his own choreographed pieces.  We first met, 24 years ago and recently teamed up aga

Will buying a new camera improve your photography?

Firstly, there are no shortcuts. A camera is a simple recording device. You point it at something. Click. It records what you aimed at, and that's it. Simple as it sounds, improving photography is only about improving what is happening in that rectangle, whether you're looking through the viewfinder of the most expensive camera in the world or a box brownie. All through the age of photography from the first cameras through to film and then digital cameras, beautiful images have been made. Images that have stood the test of time and are as exquisite today as they were the day they were made. Ever complained about the weight of your camera. You need a transit van rather than a camera bag to move this Hunter and Penrose camera around. Never mind slipping a Smartphone camera in your pocket. As big as two fridges Hunter and Penrose camera was carefully restored by documentary photographer, Ian Beesley, and is now displayed alongside his exhibition of photos at Salts Mill. The truth