Marie, West End

Marie, West EndThis young woman was standing outside the subway station on the afternoon of the West End Festival. By that time, the sunlight was too strong for photography, creating too much contrast and shadow. But in the even light of the station entrance, Marie was complimented by the light and looked very photogenic indeed, as well as very stylish with the headscarf.

I asked her permission to make a portrait of her, creating two shots – this one was the first. She very kindly agreed and this was the result.

I have done very little to the original image apart from tone it to monochrome and adding very slight sharpening, before cropping a little from the top of the frame.

David Peat Retrospective

Last week I visited the Trongate 103 Gallery in Glasgow, which houses Street Level Photoworks. There, I saw a retrospective exhibition of the work of the late David Peat. Shot in monochrome, the images formed two selections; the first, Glasgow depicted in 1968, and focussing on the Gorbals, Maryhill and Tradeston; the second, a body of work captured in different places around the world.

This afternoon, there was a talk by Ray McKenzie, which looked at Peat’s work and offered a commentary on some of the images from the collection.

At the end of the talk, I had the opportunity to meet and talk with David Bruce, former director of the Edinburgh International Film Festival – and the man responsible for bringing Peat’s photography out into the open. David Peat was primarily a film-maker, but one who enjoyed photography and who – to begin with – observed the street urchins and the crumbling decay of Glasgow in the Sixties, creating a body of work comparable to that of Oscar Marzaroli. And that body of work is perhaps more powerful now than it was then, offering social commentary, wry humour, and that ‘decisive moment’ captured in an age past.

David Bruce very kindly agreed to allow me to make this portrait of him, standing beside David Peat’s image entitled ‘Mask, Barcelona’. My thanks to Mr Bruce – both for his kindness today, and for his endeavours regarding the work of David Peat.

You can read more about the exhibition in this article in The Scotsman.

Between Brushstrokes

My third annual trip to the Merchant City Festival gave me this portrait of artist Moe Rocksmoore, who paints astonishing pictures in oils, her canvases alive with colour. Based at The Briggait, Moe has a love of skies and has recently begun exploring elements of Venice and Florence, following trips there.

Moe very kindly stopped painting for a few moments in order for me to make this portrait – my thanks to her for that.

Never For Ever

I had the pleasure of seeing the band ‘Never For Ever‘, a Kate Bush tribute act, at The Ferry in Glasgow at the weekend.

Penny, the singer with the group is pictured here while singing ‘Wuthering Heights’ as the finale of the show, which was very good.

I liked this image for a number of reasons – firstly, because it was very reminiscent of Kate Bush herself singing the same song; and also because the final treatment I gave the image produced the ‘old postcard’ look I wanted, which suited the song and the ethereality of the performance.

Duke Special at Oran Mor

Duke Special is a singer songwriter from Belfast and I have had the pleasure of seeing him on a number of occasions – most recently, at Oran Mor in Glasgow.

This shot was henad held using only the available light within the club, which created some interesting challenges! ISO was set to 6400 but a little work in post-processing and the image was perfectly usable.