IF I’M PASSIONATE ABOUT IT, I’LL POST ABOUT IT
For me Left a Bit has always been about sharing photography that excites me and gets me thinking creatively. It’s never been a space for digging people out or taking advantage for personal gains. From the beginning I’ve had one rule for the blog:
1. If I’m passionate about it, I’ll post about it.
With that in mind, for the first post of 2019 (It’s been a slow start to the year) I want to share the work of Tori Ferenc. I’ve been aware of Tori’s photography for a while now and I can’t wait to see what she’s working on this year. If you aren’t familiar with Tori’s work, then I think you should put that right and check out:
THIS POST HAS BEEN A LONG TIME COMING
As someone who’s always on the look out for photography to share on here, I’ve got into the habit of writing scribbled notes, taking photos and screen grabbing things that catch my eye. Where this process falls down, is if I don’t follow up with the notes and reminders soon after recording them. I end up tripping across them weeks even months later and thinking, why the hell did I write/photograph/screen grab these?!?
Making an effort to wade through some of these reminders on the train journey home from work, I’ve come across countless reminders to feature Dan Wood’s series ‘Gap in the Hedge’ It’s a project I really admire and have been meaning to share for a while, so here it is:
A DOG THEMED BIRTHDAY POST FOR YOU!
Roughly this time of year for the past eight years, I’ve asked my partner Ellie what she would like for her birthday, and without hesitation she replies ‘a dog!’ We’re not really in a position to have a dog at the moment, so each and every year I have gone looking for dog themed gifts, socks, scarves, jigsaw puzzles the list goes on and on.
This year however I’ve hit a brick wall so I’ve decided to share a dog themed photography series by Alma Haser instead. Happy Birthday Ellie, fingers crossed this time next year you will have a real life dog, but for now enjoy looking at this ace series!
'TRAINSPOTTERS' bY NATHAN CUTLER
Over the last few years I’ve spent an almost depressing amount of time travelling backwards and forwards on trains. From major delays to over crowded trains, the thing that seems to stick in my mind when I arrive into yet another station is, what’s that bloke in the anorak with a camera and a thermos flask doing on the end of the platform?
Train spotting has never interested me, I left that hobby to my sister when we were little. It’s not the thing itself that intrigues me, it’s the people that do it. Fortunately I’m not the only person intrigued by this, but Nathan Cutler has gone a step further and documented these band of brothers known as trainspotters.
Check out more of Nathan's work here:
A PLACE OF PILGRIMAGE TO ME, ISN’T A PLACE OF PILGRIMAGE TO YOU
As someone who considers Old Trafford Football ground and the local pasty shop as sites of pilgrimage, you can imagine how much of a plank I felt when looking at Alys Tomlinson’s series ‘Ex Voto’ for the first time.
A project documenting spiritual pilgrimage sites and the pilgrims who visit them, I was blown away by the images Aly’s captured. It’s a project I regularly go back to look at, and its one that has really opened my eyes to how different people can interpret subjects in such different ways. Not sure my way of approaching it would have won Photographer of the Year at the Sony World Photography Awards though…
Nice one Alys, a well deserved victory!
I WANT TO BE A PART OF IT, NEW YORK NEW YORK!
It’s that time of year when people are preparing to head off on holiday, and for the first time in 8 years I can take part in the conversation ‘where are you going on holiday this year?’ My first trip out of the UK in almost a decade is taking me to New York, and as much as I’m looking forward to it, I can’t help looking back…
Having never been to New York or America for that matter, I have pieced together a romanticised view of the place, by delving head first into the work of the people who documented it in years gone by. I’ve found myself spending every spare minute looking back to the time when Meyerowitz, Friedlander and Maier documented the streets of New York. To say I am excited is a bloody understatement!
GOING TO AN ISLAND IN THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE, PRETTY SWEET...RIGHT?
We’ve all had a moment when you feel like an outsider, right? I used to live a minute away from a pub that regularly gave me the impression I was intruding on a private family moment, when I occasionally went for a drink in there. I lived a whole minute away, yet the daggers I used to receive when I went in, it was as if I'd just flown in from the moon!
That is only a fraction of the feeling photographer Rhiannon Adam must have had as she approached Pitcairn Island, ready to begin her series Big ‘Fence/Pitcairn Island’. An island with a population of around 50 people, sat in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, she must have been full of trepidation as she played the part of the ultimate outsider.
Outsider or not, you really need to check out Rhiannon’s series on Pitcairn Island: https://www.rhiannonadam.com
THE PHOTOGRAPHY WORLD CAN bE A LONELY PLACE, BUT IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE…
As vast as the photography community can seem, at times it can be easy to feel quite isolated within it. It is something I struggle with and it seems to be something that is more and more common. I guess the point of this post is to say, you don’t have to feel on your own. There are events and opportunities popping up all over the country that aim to engage, collaborate and inspire creative people like you and me.
YOU CAN’T HAVE A BOOK SIGNED BY JANE BOWN MY DEAR, SHES DEAD…
Having grown up in Christchurch it’s fair to say it’s not a place that is known for it’s taste in photography. During a recent visit, I was shocked and delighted to hear that a local museum in the town was showing a selection of Jane Bown’s photography.
It was one of the quirkiest exhibitions I’ve ever been to, made up of mismatched frames and the Beatles playing on loop. I got chatting to one of the volunteers about the work, and I mentioned that I was lucky enough to own a signed copy of one of Jane’s books. It was then the facial expression of the woman altered and she looked like she was about to break bad news, she said ‘You can’t have a signed book by her my dear, she’s dead’ For a millisecond I considered trying to explain, but instead I just carried on and enjoyed the rest of the exhibition.
With us or not Jane’s work is still worth a look:
CHECK OUT ‘BRITISH RODEO RIDERS’ BY MAISIE MARSHALL!
It’s been one of those weeks where I’ve been looking at lots of photography, but nothing has really jumped out and grabbed my attention. A common theme seems to be that those who shout the loudest, very rarely back it up with images that make you eager to see and learn more. Fortunately today’s photographer lets her work do the talking…
For today’s post I have plumped for a series that is currently ongoing, but from what I have seen of it so far, I can’t wait to see more. The project is ‘British Rodeo Riders’ by Maisie Marshall. The series documents The British Rodeo Cowboy Association, a small group of riders who are based around Britain. Not only is this a fascinating story but the images Maisie has shared so far are stunning.
A project to keep an eye on for sure:
ATTEMPTING TO DELVE INTO THE WONDERS OF THE 5 PICTURE STORY
I’m currently writing content for an upcoming storytelling workshop and I’m trying to explain the importance of details in a 5 picture story. The only way I’ve been able to think of explaining it so far is that they can break up a set of images, in many ways they act as a comma would in a sentence. They can help give greater variety and depth to a story.
As a contingency plan and a way of stopping me from chatting complete nonsense, I might just direct them to Lewis Khan’s website. Lewis is a photographer in my opinion, who uses details so effectively to punctuate his work.
Don’t just take my word for it, check it out yourselves:
WE ARE SORRY TO ANNOUNCE THE 17:27 HAS BEEN CANCELLED!!
This post is a combination of a series I’ve been planning to post about and also having plenty of time to kill when my train was cancelled the other night. Public transport is at times expensive and regularly unreliable, but when you think about it, public transport has been something of a creative haven for photographers over the years.
The series I want to share with you today is George Georgiou’s ‘Last Stop’. Shot whilst travelling on buses around London, all of the images have been taken through the windows of various different buses across the capital. More than anything this series has emphasised the need to take your camera everywhere you go, and to realise that stories are there to be told, in places and ways you may never have imagined.
Hop onto George’s website and check out the series:
LIFE AS A SPY WOULD BE PRETTY SWEET...RIGHT??
I’m not sure if it’s just me, but there is something intriguing about being a spy. Whether you’re an admirer of spying royalty like James Bond or more of an ‘Allo Allo’ comedy style spy fan, you have to admit, being a spy does seem pretty cool, doesn’t it...
I came across George Selley’s series ‘Vault 7’ a while back and I started to question whether my admiration and intrigue was misplaced. The series explores the strangely banal reality of life as a modern day spy. Throughout the series George questions whether Hollywood influenced reality, or has reality influenced Hollywood…
Check out the series and see if the life of a spy is really for you:
HERE’S TO THE PORTRAIT SALON & THE BEST OF THE REST!
So the Taylor Wessing winner was announced recently, but enough about that, the Portrait Salon selection was also revealed. This post is a salute to the competition who for want of a better phrase, celebrate ‘the best of the rest’.
The Portrait Salon is a great option for those of us who have had made fruitless attempts at winning the Taylor Wessing. It’s such a good idea in fact that I’m thinking if you don’t get selected by the Taylor Wessing or the Portrait Salon next year, fear not as I will be launching the Portrait Shed (you heard it here first!) Enough of that for now though, my standout for this years Portrait Salon has to be the image above by Matt MacPake.
Check out this years lineup:
HOW MANY TIME'S HAVE YOU GONE 'I WISH I'D BLOODY THOUGHT OF THAT!'
I think that at one time or another we will all look at something and think ‘I was going to do that!’ or ‘I wish I’d thought of that’ The first time I can remember it happening was in a year 7 art class. I told my then friend of my idea for a project, only to find he used his cunning and initiative to do it before me, and take all the credit!! I had a ‘I wish I’d thought of that’ moment more recently when scrolling through Instagram.
I came across a series called ‘In Brutal Presence’ by Nicola Muirhead. The series documents residents of Trellick Tower, a tower block on Golborne Road in Notting Hill. It's an idea for a project I've always been excited by the prospect of. I don’t know about you, but just thinking of all the stories from the people living in Trellick Tower just starts my mind whirring!
This is a cool project, check it out:
CHECK OUT 'SIGNS OF YOUR IDENTITY' BY DANIELLA ZALCMAN
Sometimes I come across bodies of work where I read the introduction and think ‘where do you even begin in trying to photograph this?!?' The series that I am posting about today was one of those times…
‘Signs Of Your Identity’ is a body of work by Daniella Zalcman which explores a network of Indian Residential Schools setup by the Canadian government in the 1840’s. Children as young as two were taken from their homes and were sent to church-run boarding schools, where they were punished for speaking their native languages or observing any indigenous traditions. This is a truly shocking story and one I wouldn’t even know where to begin with. I was totally surprised and sidetracked when I saw the approach Daniella took…
You need to check out this series:
ANYTHING'S POSSIBLE IF YOU'VE GOT ENOUGH NERVE...RIGHT?
I was reading a feature online recently about William Lakin’s series ‘Good Times for Free’ and he mentioned that the images in the series were trying to emphasise the fact, that the young people he was documenting were at a crossroads in their lives. A lot of the people he was photographing were in their late teens and early 20’s, and they were looking for answers and trying out new things.
The thing that really struck me was that no matter what your age, we all at one time or another stand at a crossroads looking for answers and opportunities. Sometimes you’ve just got to take a chance and grab an opportunity, after all anything’s possible if you’ve got enough nerve… right?
You should check out ‘Good Times for Free’ on William’s website:
A ROSE TINTED VIEW ON THE PHOTOGRAPHY OF YESTERYEAR...
I don't know about you, but sometimes I feel as if I'm drowning in a sea of images. The sheer amount can be overwhelming yet at the same time the content itself can be a little underwhelming. I look at the work of photographers from the 1950’s, 60’s and 70’s and a little piece of me is quite envious.
There weren't cameras on every appliance in the 60’s, so someone who said they were a photographer more than likely was one, rather than someone who claims to be a professional because they once photographed what they had for dinner. On the flip side to that would the greats of the photographic past stand out in the Instagram era, or would they sink unseen into the overpowering sea of images… It’s an interesting one to ponder, and something that will throw up many different rose tinted points of view…
Here’s a rose tinted nod to the past with one of my favourite Martin Parr images:
SOMETIMES IT'S EASY TO OVERLOOK WHAT'S RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOU...
As someone who spends their working day trawling through endless amounts of images of places, hit by natural disasters or of people fleeing their home due to ongoing conflict, it can become easy to overlook what you’re actually looking at. It’s only really when you dig down and read first hand accounts of the people in the images in front of you that you have a slice of understanding of the horrors they have faced.
I came across work by Chris De Bode on the Guardian recently and as much as I was struck by the images, they wouldn't have had the same impact without the accompanying stories of the people Chris was photographing. The individual and community stories regarding conflict, climate change and political instability in the places they called home were, at times inspiring but largely harrowing.
I really recommend you checking out this body of work:
CHECK OUT 'CORNISH AMERICANS' BY ROB HERRON
Being lucky enough to live in Cornwall, I’m often looking for the opportunity to share work with a Cornish connection. Today I’m going to share a series with you by photographer Rob Herron.
During the 1840’s, Cornwall’s booming mining industry began to crumble. As a result many mines closed down, forcing workers to seek employment elsewhere. By the turn of the 20th century, more than 250,000 people had left Cornwall during what was known as ‘The Great Migration’ Travelling to North America, Rob documented the influence generations of Cornish men & women have had on the mining regions of Michigan & Wisconsin.
I highly recommend checking out the rest of this series:
FINDING YOUR PHOTOGRAPHIC STYLE AND APPROACH...
Finding a way of working and a style within your own image making is something that many photographers strive for, searching for that something that makes your images stand out from the rest.
Someone who currently springs to mind who has their own distinguishable style and approach is Adama Jalloh. I came across Adama’s work a couple of years ago, and I really admired her black & white images in particular. I regularly check back in with her blog excited to see what new stuff she's been shooting. Two years on from when I first saw her photography there is still a very consistent and considered approach, which for me makes her images recognisable and stand out.
You should really check out Adama’s work:
THE PHOTOGRAPHY THAT INSPIRES YOU IS BEYOND DULL?!?
Chatting to a work colleague recently about what photography inspires me, I went off into a passionate speech about different photographers, images and series. It was only when I stopped for breath, that I noticed he was looking at me like I was talking Swahili.
It was clear his opinion on photography was a polar opposite to mine, to him I was talking complete rubbish. It was then he uttered the immortal line ‘Your idea of photography is pretty dull, next your going to tell me you are going to do a project around the bloody shipping forecast?!?’ I wish I had taken a picture of the look on his face when I explained that someone had beaten me to it on a project on the Shipping Forecast, and that he should take sometime to look at the series because it’s fascinating.
I thought it was only right to share it with you today. Here is the Shipping Forecast by Mark Power, enjoy!
CHECK OUT 'WHAT LIGHT, WHAT DARKNESS' BY DANIEL REGAN
I love it when you come across projects that combine a genuine collaboration between photographer and subject. I was looking through Daniel Regan’s series ‘What Light, What Darkness’ after recently listening to his ‘A Small Voice Podcast’ interview.
The series is made up of images of Daniel’s mother and his childhood family home. Punctuated throughout the work are handwritten letters that were written by Daniel to his mother at a very dark and difficult time in his life. He found that writing his thoughts and feelings down, was the best way to communicate with her at that time. Unbeknown to Daniel, his mother kept the letters and views them as evidence of a unique bond between her and her son. The combination of photography and these very personal letters, helps to create an incredibly personal body of work.
You should definitely check out the rest of the series:
'INTO OBLIVION' BY MAJA DANIELS
Alzheimer’s is a disease that most of us would have encountered in one way or another in our life. I have a lot of admiration for photographers who choose to document the effects of the disease on both the sufferers and also the impact it can have on their families. As someone who has witnessed the effects of Alzheimer’s on people close to me, the one aspect that I hadn't seen documented was repetition. That was until I came across Maja Daniel’s series ‘Into Oblivion’.
The series documents life within the ‘Protected Unit’ in a geriatric hospital in France. The protected unit is home to residents with Alzheimer’s disease. As you go through the series you can't miss the repetitive element . The locked door in the ward becomes the centre of attention for the patients, who question the obstruction and attempt to force it open, this is a regular daily struggle.
I really recommend checking out the rest of the series:
YOU SHOULD CHECK OUT THE SHORT FILMS BY FULL BLEED
I’m loving the episodes of ‘Apocalypse Pictures’ by Full Bleed at the moment. If you’ve not heard of it before the concept is simple, the apocalypse is happening, you are running to the bunker, what photographs do you save? The only rules are: 1. Choose five images 2. One of your own and four by others.
This is a simple concept, and its fascinating to see what each photographer decides to go with in each of the episodes. I highly recommend checking out Full Bleed’s youtube channel, there are some brilliant short films on there.
I highly recommend checking out Full Bleed’s youtube channel, there are some brilliant short films on there:
COLLABORATION MAKES THE WORLD GO ROUND...
Collaboration in photography can happen in many different ways, photographer & subject, curator & photographer, the list goes on and on. When I think of photographers who have collaborated on a body of work together the first names that jump to mind are Broomberg & Chanarin.
Recently I came across a collaboration on a series called ‘For Birds Sake’ Photographers Cemre Yesil and Maria Sturm teamed up to document Turkish men in Istanbul who keep songbirds. Rooted in the Ottoman Empire, this tradition was adopted by Turkish men for centuries. This is an amazing collaborative project and I am definitely eyeing up the photo book from the series!
Check it out on Cemre & Maria's websites:
'BEHIND THE BEAT' A MINICLICK EXHIBITION NOT TO BE MISSED!
I’m always on the lookout for what Miniclick are up to, and I bring you exciting news! The creative collective are putting on group exhibition called ‘Behind the Beat’ The exhibition will explore the movements and scenes over the last 50 years that have been defined by the fashion, music and stories associated with them. Hosted at Spectrum in Brighton ‘Behind the Beat’ will be part of the Brighton Fringe and will be open every weekend throughout May, from 10am to 6pm.
So if you enjoy photography that documents movements and scenes such as Teds, Punks, Mods, Skins or Rudeboys (to name but a few) then you need to get along to this!
For more details check out the link below:
IF YOU LOVE IT, THEN LEARN TO TALK ABOUT IT...
I celebrated my 30th birthday recently, and as a present I was lucky enough to get a copy of ‘Sleeping by the Mississippi’ by Alec Soth. I was over the moon, but it was only when telling my mum about this book, that I realised she couldn’t for the life of her see what was so fascinating about this series.
So there I am, fruitlessly trying to explain why she should be inspired by this series, meanwhile she's struggling to look vaguely interested in what I’m waffling on about. I guess what I’m saying is, that being able to talk about photography, whether that is yours or the work of others is crucial, if you care about it, then learn to talk about it!
Check out 'Sleeping by the Mississippi' here:
'THE BLACK CROWS OF BORTH' BY MIRA ANDRES
Not too much to say about todays post, only that you should grab a brew and check out the amazing ‘The Black Crows of Borth’ by Mira Andres.
The series focuses on the prevailing matriarchal spirit of Borth, an isolated coastal village in Wales. Formerly a seafaring village in the early 20th Century, Borth is now a mecca for artistic self sufficient women. Mira explores the persisting landscape and draws a parallel between past and present to portray a new generation of strong women in the spirit of the matriarchal society of centuries ago.
I really recommend you delving further into this series:
pLAY-DOH + ICONIC PHOTOGRAPHS = A BLOODY GENIUS IDEA!
As a child who wasn’t really trusted to play with play-doh without causing absolute carnage around the house, I can only look at Eleanor Macnair’s work with huge slice of admiration but also a tiny slice of envy...
If you haven’t come across Eleanor’s work before, she describes it as her ‘strange tribute to photography’. Eleanor recreates iconic photographs in play-doh form. I admire anyone with a passion for photography, but I'm in total awe of someone who loves photography and wants to express that using play-doh! Personally I think this is a unique and completely genius way of expressing passion for a medium that I bloody love to!
If you haven’t yet, you need to check out Eleanor’s website:
A LIFE AWAY FROM TECHNOLOGY, WHAT DO YOU RECKON??
So when your partner suggests to you ‘shall we have a black out evening?’ It turns out they don’t mean shall we switch the lights off and save on the electric bill. For anyone as oblivious as me out there, it means an evening without any technology, iPhones, tablets and a like.
This particular evening coincided with a post I was writing, about a series I came across that encompassed a technology free lifestyle. The series focuses on a young girl growing up in a rural place, away from the everyday distractions of technology. So put your ‘black out evening’ on hold momentarily and take some time to enjoy this beautifully refreshing series by Jessica Ashley-Stokes.
I highly recommend checking it out:
WHEN SUNDAYS WERE THE ONLY DAY THAT MATTERED...
I was lucky enough to get a copy of Chris Baker's photo book ‘Sunday Football’ for Christmas, another top offering from publisher Hoxton Mini Press. After a few minutes of looking through the book, I was transported back to a time when I played Sunday League football..
Turning out each week for New Milton Eagles in an offensively yellow kit, which was at one time sponsored by a company called ‘Lady Clean’ All that mattered each Sunday was football, football, football!
If Sunday League football played or still plays a big part in your life, then this book should to.
A PROJECT A BOND VILLAIN WOULD BE PROUD OF!
My mind works in strange ways sometimes, the most recent example of this was when I was looking through a series by Danila Tkachenko called ‘Restricted Area’ The series documents locations in Eastern Europe that used to have great importance for technological progress, but are now left deserted.
The idea and imagery fascinated me, but strangely the first thought that sprung to mind was that some of the buildings & structures looked like the prime place for a James Bond villain to setup home!
Definitely a cool project to check out:
I AM FINALLY PUTTING DOWN THE TWIGLETS...
So after what seems like two solid weeks of eating and drinking, I have made the tough decision to put down the tub of twiglets and do my first post of 2017.
Aside from the food and constant repeats of Home Alone 2, the Christmas and New Year period is about family and friends for me. With that in mind my first post of 2017 will point you in the direction of Sian Davey and her ongoing series ‘Martha’. If you’ve ever considered picking up a camera and documenting the people closest to you, you need to check out Sian’s work for some serious inspiration!
You can find Sian's work on her website:
THE PROSPECT OF IMMORTALITY FOR CHRISTMAS...
At this time of year you tend to get asked one question more than any other, and that's ‘what do you want for Christmas’ My friends and family are so used to me saying ‘I don’t know’ or ‘nothing’ that it must of come as quite a shock to my dad last week, when he asked ‘what would you like for Christmas? and I replied with ‘The Prospect of Immortality' I think the shocked silence on the other end of the phone said it all.
I’ve got my fingers crossed that I will receive the photo book by Murray Ballard but I’m slightly anxious that I might get the concerned parent chat, with them wanting to know why I am planning for life after death! I will keep you posted...
Check out Murray's work on his website:
'LONDON ENDS' BY PHILIPP EBELING
I’m normally someone who swerves away from series shot in London, unless I am seeing something unusual, fresh or mind blowingly different. ‘London Ends’ by Philipp Ebeling caught my eye quite recently however, a project that strays away from the landmark strewn city centre and focuses on where London ends.
Only problem I've got now is that the book that accompanies this project has now been added to an ever growing ‘wanted photo book list!’
You should check out the series on Philipps website:
A FASCINATING INSIGHT INTO THE WORLD OF FAKE NEWS...
During the recent US Presidential Election race it was hard to escape the outrageous comments and controversial stories circulating around Trump’s campaign. At times it felt like trying to swim against a tidal wave of bullshit!
It all comes down to what you believe and who you trust. I came across a photo story yesterday on WIRED which delved into the World of ‘fake news’ Photographer Guy Martin was sent on an assignment to Veles in Macedonia, to document the teenagers who mastered the art of ‘fake news’.
I highly recommend checking it out on WIRED:
SUNDAY SERVICE BY CHLOE DEWE MATHEWS
I don’t know about you, but the thing that keeps me coming back to photography is the desire to learn and engage with subjects I may have little or no knowledge of. Whether it be a story about a small village in a far flung place or in the case of today's post a story on the African churches that are springing up in former office blocks, old bingo halls and many other places in the south London borough of Southwark.
You should definitely take a look at Chloe Dewe Mathews series ‘Sunday Service’. It’s opened my eyes to a community I was previously unaware of. You never know you may learn something too…
Check out the rest of the series on Chloe's website:
AN EXHIBITION TO GET ALONG TO...
If like me you've been following the photography of Niall McDiarmid for some time, then you will be as delighted as I am about Niall's current exhibition!
Running until 14th October, the exhibition is taking place at the Oriel Corwyn Gallery. You still have a couple of weeks left to get along and see it.
If for some reason you need some persuading here's a link to Niall's work below:
'FOURTEEN' BY HANNAH BARR
I occasionally get the opportunity to go along to graduate photography shows, this year I was fortunate enough to attend the show at Falmouth Uni and there was some quality work on display. A body of work that really stood out of the crowd for me was Hannah Barr’s series ‘Fourteen’
Hannah spent time documenting the lives of 14 year old girls, showcasing the good and the bad of being a teenager in today's world . This is a fascinating insight and I highly recommend having a little look.
Check out the rest of the series on Hannah's website: