Author Archive

Well that was a fun weekend

Monday, September 3rd, 2007

Got feck all sleep over the past few days due to music going on til 4am and 30,000 noisy fucking campers, my cough and cold got way way worse, a bloody nose for half of yesterday didn’t help either but despite all those MINOR things, the Electric Picnic lived up to the hype and more. Damn you Jim Carroll and your Pieminister nod. Filled up there more than once. Bjork was fantastic, shame the sound was shite. Chemical Brothers were absolutely fantastic too. Visuals at 1am just surreal. My Brightest Diamond blew me away I must say. Final Fantasy as good as ever though I fecked off somewhere else, can’t remember where. That would have been the absinthe. It’s a pity the cold and cough screwed me up as I found it too hard to stay for most shows in the tents because of all the people smoking them them and the heat. Super Extra Bonus Party, wow, they really rock. Sunday mass with the Warlords of Pez. Nice. Bats for Lashes I found to be quite boring and hyped. Skream was the last act I saw and worth the wait. Nice sound system.

The Go! Team weren’t impressive, though again I blame the sound system. Beastie Boys, yeah, whatever. Boring. I find these guys to be completely over-valued. I noticed that Derek enjoyed the Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pimp show, though I dunno were they as good as I had thought they’d be. They have lots of potential though. Loved when Scroobius Pimp when asked about playing their biggest hit, “If we play that now you’ll all fuck off to Sonic Youth right after, we ain’t stupid.” I think thought it was MIA for me that was the best show, her or Bjork. When I showed someone my list of want to sees for the weekend, they said “You love your women so.” and I guess I do.

Possibly more later. I need sleep now. This took me an hour to write.

Guest Photographer: John Williams

Monday, September 3rd, 2007

John Williams is another genius behind a camera and I am happy to say that I have a print of his jelly people photo below and lots comment on it when they see it. Don’t forget to visit and subscribe to his site.

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What an honour to be asked by Damien to talk about photoblogging, although getting down to typing what I may say is very scary, this would be one of the reasons I have chosen PHOTOblogging (no writing really needed) as my main way of blogging to the WWW.

Damien has asked that I pick out 2 pictures which I like and explain a bit about them. What a bitch, since I have over 400 images I like, so I ended up choosing 10 and let some friends vote, I have to say I was very pleased with the results since they pretty much matched the ones I had in mind. My first image comes from Glendalough.

This was one of my first entries to my photoblog, and one I can honestly say “I aint got a clue how I managed it”. It was taken on Saint Patrick’s Day when myself, my wife and my in-laws decided to venture down for a walk. Since the photoblog had only begun I decided to bring my newish camera and take some shots, which I did, and they were all pretty bad, all except for this one which was taken in manual mode where I had full control of all settings, which I still had no idea about and so I screwed up. When I got home and uploaded the photos to the computer it came out much darker then I had expected and had a great moodiness about it. Sometimes, as I have since learnt, the best photos come when you least expect.

For my second ditty, we have Jelly Babies.

This was an experiment I decided to carry out while sick from work one day, I have a very weird mind when my stomach feels ill and decided that I should try to take some food shots (why!) which I believe can be quite hard to light and get right. I am a useless cook but did find a bag of Lidl Jelly Babies. So I decided to allow them to be my model for my photos. They pose badly! in the end I just lined them up on a white card and created a Jelly Army. It is one of the most talked about images from my blog (not by comments as Treasa will understand) but by word of mouth. Also I have never tried to do food photography again since it sounds so painful.

I know I am taking liberties here, but I did also want to show one more image mainly due to the fact that it something a lot of people reading this can relate too.

This was taken at last years Blog Awards, and while the majority of people were warm indoors, drinking the night away, a lot of photobloggers went outside to capture the lunar eclipse that occurred the same night, and this is what I came up with.

Well that’s my lot, if you are reading this far congratulations getting through my very badly written blurb and many thanks to Damien for giving me the opportunity to partake in this guest post thing with so many established photographers.

Guest Photographer: Lili Forberg

Friday, August 31st, 2007

Today we’re sampling some of the wonderful work of Lili Forberg. Her blog is at http://misslili.blogspot.com and her portfolio website is at www.misslili.net. Subscribe!
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This is my first ever guest blog post. What a weird thing to do, because when writing my own blog I feel like I just write to myself.. I’m aware that others read it, but I never really think about it.

Anyway, It is actually impossible to choose my two favourite photos. I have so many favourites, and I keep getting new ones because I am lucky enough to shoot amazing new people all the time (it’s not only luck, I work very hard.. ha!) Anyway, the first one I chose is a shot taken at approximately this time last year, and because the Hard Working Class Heroes festival is coming up at the end of the month, I thought I’d give it a quick plug (check out www.hwch.net for details)

Last year, I decided to organise a photoshoot dedicated to the bands of HWCH, featuring musicians of bands which were playing that year. It was then going to be displayed in the HWCH photography exhibition in FilmBase and I was also hoping that a magazine would run it as well (Totally Dublin magazine published it at the end)

The shoot was over two days and featured over 10 musicians from different bands. All gathered in my studio in Smithfield where I had a stylist waiting for them with a selection of clothes, plus a hairdresser and two makeup artists. I was quite nervous before the day as I didn’t have a clue how it was going to work out- none of the musicians knew each other, I didn’t know them and I didn’t know if it was going to be awkward or difficult or what to expect. I prepared loads (and loads) of sandwiches, filled the fridge with beer (you never know with these rock stars.. 😉 and hoped for the best.

Had so much fun on the day then, everyone was just amazing. The biggest challange was the fact that these people weren’t just models that would wear anything. The stylist had to style them so that they still represent their music and their band, and also fit into the shoot as a whole.
So anyway, this is one of the shots from day 1.

Hard Working Class Heroes
from left to right:
Gaz (Butterfly Explosion), Aoife (Moth Complex), Neilo (The Things), Karen (Cowboy X), Eric Eckhart, Caroline (The Radio), Colm (Sickboy), Niamh (Ham Sandwich).

There are more shots from the day here and here.

This second photograph, is one of my favourite photos ever, and definitely a shoot I will remember for the rest of my life. Model Emma Quinlan is a model with Assets, but also owns loads of snakes and performs with them in various places. So we decided to do a shoot with her snakes, which will also be used in InDublin magazine for a feature about her.

Emma Quinlan and bubbles

Emma arrived in my studio with 4 snakes (pictured is Bubbles) and a lizard. Two of the snakes were MASSIVE (around 5 stone each) and the other two were smaller ones. I helped her to bring her stuff up from the car and she handed me a handbag to take upstairs. There was a snake it it. Everywhere I looked there were snakes. It was crazy. They were all really cute though and so easy to work with. They would just wrap themselves around her. Whenever my softbox flashed, one of the snakes would rise up to it like a big poser. Emma said this was normal because he was light sensitive so he was trying get to the light whenever it flashed. It made for some very interesting pictures! I got my photo taken with Bubbles and Squirt as well which was fun and a bit scary at first. If you want to have a look at more of the photos, they are in InDublin this week I think, or you can see some of them over at my blog!

Thanks for reading, byesies.

MissLili x
http://misslili.blogspot.com
www.misslili.net

Off to Electric Picnic

Friday, August 31st, 2007

This blog has mostly been on auto-pilot all week and that will continue until Monday evening now. See y’all when I see you

Just cos

Friday, August 31st, 2007

My Electric Picnic List

Thursday, August 30th, 2007

This is roughly my list, based on the list from Nialler. Say hello to me if you see me at it. This is the last of the summer and pretty much the last of my free time until next year. 🙁

Meant to add that the artist I am most looking forward to now is MIA (apart from Bjork of course) and looking forward to seeing Final Fantasy again.

Update: Left out some of Friday, doh!

Friday:

MAIN STAGE
08.15-09.45 Bjork
06.30-07.30 Hot Chip

ELECTRIC ARENA
05:45-06:45 Paul Hartnoll Band

CRAWDADDY STAGE
09:30-10:30 Modest Mouse

Saturday:
MAIN STAGE
12.00-02.00 Chemical Bros
08.15-09.15 Polyphonic Spree

ELECTRIC ARENA
10.45-12.00 Beastie Boys
05.00-06.00 MIA

FOGGY NOTIONS
09.15-10.15 Final Fantasy
07.45-08.45 Ratatat
01.00-01.30 The Jimmy Cake

TRENDS LAB
03.00-03.30 My Brightest Diamond

BODYTONIC ARENA
12.00-01.00 Super Extra Bonus Party

Sunday:
MAIN STAGE
08.45-09.45 Iggy & The Stooges
07.00-08.00 Sonic Youth

ELECTRIC ARENA
09.30-10.30 The Go! Team
05.45-06.45 Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
12:30-01:00 Fight like Apes

CRAWDADDY STAGE
12.15-12.45 Warlords of Pez

FOGGY NOTIONS
10.45-11.45 Skream
07.15-08.15 Dan le Sac Vs Scroobius Pimp at expense of Rilo Kiley
04.45-05.30 Bat for Lashes
01.30-02.00 Si Schroeder

TRENDS LAB
06.00-06.45 Sons & Daughters
02.30-03.00 Patrick Wolf

Guest Photographer: Ryan Whalley from Rymus.net

Thursday, August 30th, 2007

Ryan from Rymus.net is one of the first Photobloggers I encountered and I really like his photos. He is the Official Photographer for the Irish Blog Awards, long may he do that and I still must get round to booking him to do my family photo which I was meant to do months back. Please do visit his site and subscribe.

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First and foremost, Kudos to Damien for his continued drive to get Irish photobloggers noticed. I can’t help but think that without his seemingly tireless efforts, I for one would not have gotten far beyond filling flickr with my own special brand of ‘shoot and hope for the best’.

So needless to say I was delighted when he contacted me about being a guest photoblogger. It’s just not something you shy away from! Of the many thousands of photos I have uploaded on the web so far, picking just two seemed like a bewildering task. As usual, instead of trying to please the masses and choosing what the public seem to like, I’ll give you two that I like. Hopefully the public will approve…

Inniscarra Dam

Taken back when my first DSLR was in it’s infancy, when I’d just taken the plunge and spent my hard earned money I was all too green and needed to get back to using SLR’s after languishing so long in the territory of compact cameras. I went to Inniscarra Dam, just west of Cork city beyond Ballincollig with the intention of practising on the fly fishermen that regularly visit the area. After arriving and finding the river without a single fisherman, I turned my cheap, second hand zoom lens on the water falling from the top of the dam. Shooting through the railings which prevented me from getting any closer to the action, I managed to catch this heron almost posing in front of the cascading water.

I’m often accused of photoshopping the hell out of this image to get the ‘pint of Guinness’ look (as some people have put it). The simple truth is that there is practically no work done on it. Not because I was supremely confident of the image’s quality, but because I didn’t have photoshop at that stage, let alone did I know how to use it! I’ll also have to thank the fence I was leaning against while taking the photo for the effect on the edges of the photo.

I still haven’t managed to get any photos of anyone fly fishing…

The second photo would have to be this one;
IMG_0949

After a seemingly endless morning of floating around the city trying to get photos for the TodayFM ‘Us’ project (and having met Donncha who was doing the exact same thing), I made the decision to leave the masses behind and head to the beach. In what seemed afterward like divine intervention, that October 1st saw a huge surfing competition take place on Garrettstown beach near Kinsale. After sitting on the sand taking many hundreds of action shots, I grabbed a sequence of a windsurfer moving at speed across the very top of a breaking wave with the same cheap lens (I did only have three lenses in my bag back then) as the first shot.

I love this shot for several reasons. Two of the main reasons would be because it inspired me to spend more time at the beach taking surfing photography and because it represents the first sale I ever made. Before leaving the beach, I was approached by one of the surfers who asked for my contact details. I gave him my flickr address and some weeks later I was contacted by the very man in the photo. We arranged a huge print, he had it professionally mounted & framed and I can only presume it’s hanging on someone’s wall right now.

I was hooked. The buzz of a single sale turned what was up to then a passive hobby into an obsession. It’s more the knowledge that what I’ve created is appreciated by an audience wider than me and my family rather than the financial gain. Not saying that the money doesn’t help… but it’s not what drives me.

My Grandfather’s Hands – Claire Wilson aka GingerPixel

Wednesday, August 29th, 2007

Today I am delighted to introduce Claire Wilson from Gingerpixel. Visit her site and subscribe too!
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When Damien asked me would I do a guest photography post for his blog I at first was at a bit of a loss to find something new that I hadn’t already posted on my own blog. Then I remembered the photos of my Grandfather.

DaDa

I love to take photographs of people. Nothing is so fascinating and challenging as trying to capture the subtle expressions and details that describe a person. When I approach someone to take their portrait I don’t want to just take a snapshot of them, I want something that catches a little bit more, something unique to them. As soon as people pose for a picture it’s as if they put on their photo face: they go all stiff and grimace at the camera, so a little bit of subterfuge is necessary. For this shot of my Grandfather we were sat around the dinner table after my mother had fed us all and he was in full story flow. It was simple enough to snap away without him even noticing thanks to an 85mm telephoto lens and the fact that my family are so used to me with a camera. A lot of the shots I didn’t put the camera to my eye so it was even less obtrusive.

My Grandfather has always worked with his hands. Although there are no other artists in the family, I think that I get what artistic ability I have from my DaDa. As far back as I can remember he has always been making things; his nails are permanently oil-stained from tinkering with the engines on the trucks he drove all his life. As a child we would sit at the kitchen table in his conservatory (which he built) and he would teach me to draw horses. For this reason I wanted to take photographs of his hands because they are so expressive of who he is and the life he has lived.

My Grandfather's Hands

Guest Photographer: John Smyth aka North Atlantic Skyline

Tuesday, August 28th, 2007

Today’s Guest Photographer is John Smyth aka North Atlantic Skyline. Please visit his site and consider subscribing


(caption: Oil tanker leaves Galway Harbour at dawn this February))

There was a time when most of the trade through Galway Harbour was either fish, cattle or sheep, which meant you could just find the harbour by following your nose. Nowadays, there are hardly any exports, but plenty of imports, nearly all of which would make the average eco-warrior weep. All of the coal for the county is landed (and stored) on the Docks, steel for the construction industry and thousands of gallons of bitumen to tar roads [that’s what carried about in those Cold Chon tankers]. But mainly it is oil, and lots of it – about 35 million litres can be stored at any time at the harbour. Every other day, an oil tanker is guided in Galway Harbour to keep the county’s insatiable appetite for oil sated.

So what would happen if the flow of oil was interrupted ? We’d probably muddle along just fine for a few days, but what about a few weeks. Well, we’d be banjaxed. Or rather, we would be, if it wasn’t for the National Oil Reserve Agency or NORA.

NORA is the agency charged with ensuring that Ireland keeps a strategic reserve of oil at all times. Right now, the country has 105 days of oil in reserve. Strictly speaking, the reserves are like a set of IOUs that the state will call in when there is a crisis – NORA doesn’t have a set of storage tanks to call its own. Just under 40% of the reserve is abroad – oil that other countries promise to sell us in case of emergency ( let’s hope they don’t have an emergency at the same time, eh?). The rest is stored by Ireland’s only refinery (Whitegate in Cork), by commercial oil importers or by very large consumers of oil, such as the ESB. Again, the reserve is basically a percentage of the oil that NORA can call upon.

NORA’s brief is based on Ireland’s commitments to the International Energy Agency, namely to maintain emergency oil reserves equivalent to at least 90 days of net oil imports, and to have ready a programme of oil demand restraint measures equal to 7 % and 10% of national oil consumption. Ah yes – restraint. Not something that we are too good at here in Ireland. Mind you, NORA doesn’t control the price of oil during a crisis, so restraint may well be self-imposed.

Think you could run NORA ? Well, they are advertising for a new boss right now, so why not apply (an ability to siphon diesel out of a tank would be an advantage). The lads in charge of the water supply in Galway need not apply.

Nokia Event in London – NGage is back once again, again.

Tuesday, August 28th, 2007

Flying out with Bernie to London this afternoon for the Nokia GoPlay event. I still have not been told exactly what is happening but the NY Times say NGage is back but as a gaming system for current phones instead of a physical device. Michael Gartenberg is over for the event too, it seems. Would love to meet that genius analyst.

Update: And it seems a fight with Orange about a new music download service.

The hotel is the Royal Horseguards:
Royal Horseguards

Itinerary for tomorrow.
Wednesday, 29th August 2007

07:00 – 07:30 Breakfast
08:00 Depart hotel for Conference
08:45 – 09:55 Registration and morning coffee
10:00 – 11:00 Press conference (WEBCASTED) – Olli Pekka Kallasvuo + Anssi Vanjoki + Kai Öistämö

11:00 Experience area open -Press Interviews -Media Mobile office open
12:30 – 14:00 Lunch available for delegates – Jonathan Brooke entertaining
14:00 – 15:00 Go Play panels – Music & Games (WEBCASTED) –moderated by Mark Selby
16:30 Venue closes
16.30 Transport back to hotel.

Evening:
19:30 – 00:30 EVENING PROGRAM at Ministry of Sound (MOS)