Missing Out

Dom 25 sep

Dominic came by for a whistle-stop visit on his way to Poland, Berlin (my home city), New York, Boston and Miami from Barcelona, where he has been living the Catalan life for the past four years. The dogs love him and he loves them. It is a mutual understanding without any sort of expectations. – Ah we raised him well.

Missy is very people suspicious but that did not matter to our 28 year old free spirit. In he climbed, into the whelping box were Missy guarded her four young puppies. I hesitated; should I make a photograph of this rare moment or not. If I had let myself be too worried about missing out, or too worried about the consequences of pinning all my hopes on this one exposure done in a fashion that is prone to unpredictable consequences (slow exposure, camera shake, the like) then I would have fearfully kept myself from even attempting this image, and that to me is one of the greatest photographic sins. I pursue images for the sake of the pursuit and with the hopes of success. I do not pursue them for promise of success. My mentality here I think is key to understanding my process. Would I have been disappointed if this exposure had not turned out? Not really. I was standing there with my own eyes after all. I have my memories. More important I have the knowledge that I tried and wasn’t afraid to try. And I would have the experience gained. Am I thrilled that the image turned out? Oh, yeah. I enjoy the successes, but I don’t worry about missing out. Once you start worrying about what you miss, you discover that list is infinitely long. You will always miss something, no matter how hard you try not to. So I let that all go. I don’t rue what I cannot do, I try to do what I can and enjoy that. In that vein, how could I not attempt to do an exposure of such a rare occasion? I wanted to see how it would look. That was enough for me and I dare say it always will be.





I am fascinated by long-term, human inspired erosion, both of natural landscapes and urban cityscapes.


I can be staring at the grooves worn in stone or far up a moor looking at boot-worn and eroded footpaths and it captivates me.


But I struggle to articulate just why this is so. I guess a lot of it is the scale, both in terms of time and numbers of people involved. It is a subtle, collective history written of a place and of a countless large group of anonymous people.


But such scenes are also testimony to the impact and effect we have on a place. Go out for a hike, and you are leaving a trace, it just isn’t usually a trace measured in a day’s time. Given enough people and enough days and a trail is blazed, the trail widens, tree roots get exposed, plant life is trampled into dust, erosion patterns change.


I wrestle balancing both the negative and positive aspects of this behaviour. Mostly I just remember that wherever I go, wherever my feet land or my hands graze, I am making an impact.


I am eroding, slowly, those places I love. This means I have to value that time spent there, to make that subtle cost worth it, however I can.



A Fine Mess You Got Us Into…


Stan and Ollie

It has been a very hectic few months. For the first time we had a second litter this year due to Missy’s refusal to have puppies last year. To say I am tired is making light of the fact that I wander around in a permahaze and mostly run on autopilot. Those who know me know how much I detest automation. To me it equals aimlessness. And I don’t do aimlessness.


So 18 days ago Missy produced 4 gorgeous puppies to Aldo. Hard work for us all, but ultimately good fun.


And this is it. No more youngsters now for the foreseeable future. Huzzah.


Marlene and Thelma

signing off.

Good Night.




Having read The Lord of the Rings as a young boy and created the visual imagery in my mind I never felt the need to watch any of the movies. The characters were real enough and I enjoy having them with me.


So today I raided my Lord of the Rings negative Folder and put a little fantasy post for you to enjoy and journey into middle-earth.


Some Photographs are years old other were just made recently.


Susan has recently completed a needle felted sculpture of Gollum, and for the first time I saw a 3D image of how I imagined him.


And what has this got to do with a photography blog? Well two-fold really. One it’s my blog and I do as I please, but more to the point all these images were made using ND Filters of different strengths. So here is a little of my findings about ND Filters.


The term neutral density is a bit of a misnomer. It isn’t really as neutral as it seems. Most of my ND filters do quite well if I only cared about the visible spectrum, and sometimes that’s enough. But I have long suspected that many ND filters don’t block UV light as readily as visible light. Turns out that some ND filters also don’t block IR light quite as well either. IR light isn’t generally a problem for me since I do most of my long exposure on film. Most film emulsions aren’t sensitive to IR light. It is digital sensors that experience the most noticeable problems here. Again, not a big help to me, I just use IR-insensitive film.

I guess many film emulsions have sensitivity that extends into the UV range. I knew that certain b&w films do, but based on what I see, a number of colour films do too. This tends to result in a blue/purple shift when using strong filtration. It also tends to result in the underexposure of vegetation. Mostly I accept it. Eventually I suppose I will learn how to make best use of that UV exposure rather than fight it.


So off to find my way back to reality……..



Call It Dreaming


Pain is on the way out

And I want to find what can’t be found


Been up since the break of dawn

Lost my mind today


I am at the sea and I can hear trains

Winds of change so new


Blowin’ right through me

And pull me into the light


One thing I appreciate about photography is how it teaches me to value even the seemingly mundane moments of the day. I pulled up into this spot at the end of a long drive, just before the sun sank below the waterline. It was casting some wonderful, long light and, I made a point to take about three minutes to stand and make a couple of photographs before I set off onto the beach.


It only took about ten minutes to get organised, but in that ten minute span the light left. It made me thankful I had taken the few minutes to enjoy it while I had it. Light in the hand is definitely worth more than light ten minutes later. At least this time it was. This is a lesson I constantly remind myself of, to take advantage and to value the light I am in at that moment, to not pass it by or figure I can get it later because it might not be there later. Light and time are both fleeting and both finite. Making photos always helps me remember that.


My excitement I guess comes from how I experience moments like this and this isn’t the first case where these feelings have expressed themselves.



Strangest Thing


I was looking for her

But I fell for you


It was all just a blur

And a mystery too


I was moving through time

Riding my luck

Then I found you


So goodnight my dear

I am tired, it’s late

And tomorrow I keep my appointment with fate

Not playing the game

I loved and I lost

But I am one and the same


Do we choose who we love


Is it up to us


Does anyone know