Beautiful Hamburgers – A post from 2013

This was the second and last post I did last year. Although its now a year old I still enjoyed writing it and photographing the City. So I decided to let it fly again with a few small revisions. I enjoyed photographing Hamburg and using my images to tell the story looking back now a year later there are a few things I would have done differently post edit but I thought I would keep them as they are, some are good (i think) others maybe not so but hey…every days a school day and the only way is up.

A family birthday in Germany was on the cards and a chance to photograph Hamburg helped the decision to fly out for the party. We decided to go early to spend a day in Hamburg. We did spend a long time in the train station however. Anyone with experience of Germany’s train stations will know why, a more apt description would be a shopping centre that happens to have trains running in and out of it. The bakeries, deli’s, restaurants and bars are incredible and you could easily eat within the train stations all weekend, there is that much choice. The station also had its own photography store to keep me there for a little while longer.Result!!

Although time was limited and I spent more time photographing the station than the city I did get chance to do a little exploring. As we entered the most expensive area I came upon a old sailor one of the many homeless that occupy the streets of all cities in Europe. He was happy to get his picture taken and a donation in his paper cup helped establish a rapport. There is so much to see in Hamburg though that I hardly did it justice especially the area around the river and docks. However I least i have a good excuse to return there in the near future.

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Visiting the old neighbourhood – why having a camera is like having a dog.

I had the opportunity last week to go up to my parents house in Manchester. I have been up there off and on but on most occasions I had been to busy to find time to walk the old neighbourhood. One thing that i have realised since I really started getting passionate about photography is photography is like having a dog. Replace dog with camera or I’m my case dog and camera and I can’t wait to get out of the armchair and explore. How many of us need to have a reason before we leave the house and get out from in front of the TV. Like dog owners photographers always have a reason to get out there. We are always looking for the next image and in doing so become more aware and more alive to the environment we are in.  Dorothea Lange once said “the camera is an instrument that helps people to see without a camera”.  I am sure that without my camera I would have never spent several hours walking the old neighbourhood and not only walking it but seeing it with new eyes. Although a deeply personal journey for me as I looked at the run down barbers shop. I remembered fondly my dad taking me to get a haircut at Vic’s, me a toddler sat perched on a wooden board resting on the arms of the barbers chair. To see that same place 40 years on and Vic still there plying his trade, to see the old streets I played on, the pubs I had my first drinks in and to be able to see it all through the lens of my OMD and relive those memories was a morning well spent as mornings go.

Finding a camera for me was like putting a pair of prescription glasses on for the first time and realising that what you thought you could see was just the surface. All of a sudden there was so much detail that you didn’t realise was there waiting to be discovered. When you look at the fine detail, you can’t help but find the story beneath. So here’s my story written in images the story of a few hundred metres of Manchester Suburb where I grew up. Ye ok, Its may not be the prettiest of places, but to me it will always be home.

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We didn’t start the fire, it was always burning since the worlds been turning

Billy Joel

Sunset Milton Keynes UK

Sunset Milton Keynes UK

WELCOME TO FINDING FOCUS LOOKING BACK AND LOOKING FORWARD

OK, so here I go again. Another attempt at getting my photography moving forward. Its now 2014 and I was here 12 months ago putting out my first blog to showcase my photography and try and establish myself on WordPress and other social media.

Nikon is still with me but I have changed camera and sysems

Nikon is still with me but I have changed camera and systems

My hope was I could meet other photographers, be inspired and get creative myself. I think I was so overawed by the task and the work and time taken up by blogging. Two blogs was as far as I got. I also had doubts about the level of my photography and as to whether it was good enough to share. Well 12 months on, a change of camera system, a lighting and studio photography course done, a dozen books digested and a thousand You tube videos watched I’m here again. Way off where I want to be but inspired, open minded and still fascinated by Photography. Lets see how far I get this year.