Today I remembered a book I'd read in a previous lifetime. It was a collection of contemporary essays by different writers on their pactise of zen in the West. The most memorable of these was by someone who wrote about being a music student, several years earlier.
She had entered a prestigious conservatoire as a well-regarded, technically gifted pianist and after a year or so of studying managed to obtain a prized practice session once a week for a short period with the most highly regarded professor at the school, who rarely worked with students on a one-to-one basis. From the start the atmosphere in the room was relaxed but sombre and with little conversation. After a protracted wait to find what she would be asked to play she was eventually instructed to produce a particular single note on the piano, which she did. After some time had passed she was asked to repeat the note once again. As you can probably guess this was all that her classes ever consisted of. (Presumably the tu…
Today I saw someone else taking photographs of the old factory fronts, (which are over there on the left in this picture). Despite the Lincoln University photography department being close by I've never seen anyone taking pictures around here before. He was maybe 40 and perhaps not a student. He was walking around for half an hour, longer than I expected. When I saw him taking a picture up an old roof-access ladder which I remember also doing once, it was impossible not to be minded again of the presence of yet another photographer, Alexander Rodchenko, (1891-1956).
Interesting to then find this tribute, by Ksyusha Miloslavskaya; Ladder from 'Hello, Rodchenko' series, (2014)
It was sunny and I couldn't figure out why no matter how much I dialled down the EV adjustment taking this it made no difference, it's overexposed. Last night I had some muffins in those little paper cupcake holder things and had been remembering Wayne Thiebaud.
A late Sunday afternoon in the middle of March, and over the wall of my garden I was feeding a swan some bread (not fresh, not stale, small pieces, no crust), and only eventually noticed the quietness. Just the sound of the river and the occasional car driving by on the nearby bridge. The unending, distant crashing sounds from the demolition site had stopped. And there was still 90 minutes of daylight left. Hang on, they had clocked off early!
I've been wanting to take one last set of rooflight pictures in there to close out the series made a year ago, as the building now makes its final transition by way of demolition. As the structures have been partly torn open on one side I was pre-visualising making an image with the lines of glass rectangles high up above snaking across and abruptly ending in jagged metal and sky.
I had been deterred by various things; like anti-climb paint on the top bar of the gate (not noticed till it was on my hand) and a workman noticing me, the same o…
7 days a week demolition work starts at 07.30 and they knock off at 17.30, by which time the light is fading. Not having much success at getting in here. The thing being busted is me, twice, and by the same workman.
This is from the other side of the site I keep going back to. The white office fronts have been reduced to facades as an excavator has largely pulled down most of the structure behind.
This pan is out of focus but I kept waiting for a flock of pigeons to fly across the frame (they live in some of the older buildings being torn down), and lI ike the way on the left side here they are shaped around the tip of a cloud.
As soon as I left my house I could hear the nearby factory being pulled to pieces and from my usual viewpoint at the front gate could see two machines working at speed, one with cutters and this one with pincers.
It seems to have been drizzling all weekend. At the back of my mind I've been considering taking any window of opportunity if it eased off to go out for the weekly demoltion site photograph around the corner. Maintaining a standard time interval seems a worthwhile aspect to doing it somehow. But I wasn't waiting like a coiled spring exactly but checking now and then, and thinking 'nah' each time. No point me or the camera getting soaked for it. I've only got one camera left, held together by glue.
But the calculation got more complicated through Sunday afternoon. I quite like Tesco cottage loaf, freshly baked in-store, and being a Sunday they shut at four, so the pressure was starting to build by half three today for other reasons, such as if I was going to be able to have a fried egg sandwich later. The light was clearly deteriorating by then, earlier than usual due to the overcast conditions.
Rain. Egg. Tesco. Four O'clock. Fading light. Factory. Photograph…
New Order Berlin 2012 - 'Love Will Tear Us Apart' closed their set (watch from 39.30 in the video). The edit included occasional shots of the audience from various cameras, and this face appeared twice, both just after the start of the song and once again at the end, with eyes closed on both occasions, and perhaps throughout.
This AP photo (uncredited) taken during the fire at Arthur's Seat, Edinburgh last week, (Feb 2019), reminded me of Joel Sternfeld's photograph taken back in the seventies. Unlike the many other photos of this fire that appeared online which concentrated on the blazing hillside itself, the alternative composition throws attention elsewhere. The effect seems to be to suggest that even when disasters strike close to us, most of the time people are largely peripheral to the drama and remain in the bubble of our own universe.