May 7 2015

Two days ago, on the fifth day of the fifth month my little boy James turned five. He fills my days with joy. Here we are together looking into a puddle, in a shot inspired by fellow Apple World Gallery photographer, Cielo De La Paz.

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Happy Birthday

 

This shot was taken last week with the Fuji X100T in London. Did not shoot a lot with this camera while in London. The iPhone was much more employed.

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The music may have stopped, but the dance continues

 

 

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My favourite image of 2014

12 months of photographs from Wicklow, Dublin, London, Copenhagen, Berlin, Hong Kong, Seoul, Busan, Geochang, Tokyo, Kyoto, Taipei and the People’s Republic of Cork. Having gone back over the images I posted in 2014, the DSLR image I keep coming back to is this:

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My favourite photograph of 2014 (DSLR)

I gave it the title Slow releasing melancholy. There is something so soothing about melancholy. In the distance, through the dribbling raindrops you can see Tokyo in the evening high up from Roppongi Hills Mori Tower. Tokyo does mood so well. The observation deck of this skyscraper had low lights and the gentlest of jazz music playing in the background. I could go on and write more about this image, but it is all yours. See what you want to see and feel whatever the image frees in you.

I posted an iPhone photograph of my son in the art gallery of the university I work in on the last day of 2014, not only because I love the image, but because I knew I wanted to have it posted in 2014 because it is my very favourite image I took with the iPhone in 2014. James is four now and a happy and healthy, little boy. He is curious, but quickly distracted and this image captures it all for me. The framed photographs got his attention for a few seconds. He scanned them and disregarded them and moved on.

 

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My favourite photograph of 2014 (iPhone)

So here you go, here are the 12 images for DSLR and iPhone which stood out for me. Thanks for all the visits and feedback. Here’s to 2015! Everything will happen. Believe – achieve.

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My favourite iPhone images of 2014

 

 

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My favourite DSLR images of 2014

 

 

October 20 2014

The mornings are darker now. Just 8 a.m and still not bright. How I dislike winter? My little boy, James, is an impatient 4 year old and asks when will he be 5. I bring him to the tree in our front garden and together we stand there as the wind rushes through and clears the tree of its leaves.

“When the leaves come back on the tree, James, then it will be your birthday?”

“Did the leaves bring me, Daddy?”

“No, the leaves didn’t bring you, James.”

“Will the leaves bring me presents?”

“They might, you never know.”

“Why do the leaves fall off the trees?”

“The wind blows them off.”

“Will the wind blow them back on when my birthday comes?”

“No, new little leaves will grow and the wind won’t be able to blow them off for a long time.”

“How do the leaves know it will be my birthday? Do the leaves have birthdays too?”

“I don’t know, lovey. What do you think?”

“No, leaves don’t have birthdays, that’s silly, Daddy. Is it a long time to my birthday, when is it, Daddy?”

“I told you, when the leaves come back on the tree, then it will be your birthday.”

“But there are still some leaves on the tree. Look!”

“I know. But soon they will be gone and then we will have to wait until the new leaves grow.”

“Oh!”

Winter, I hate it! My birthday will come when the leaves come back on the trees and I cannot wait for it. Spring! don’t mind getting a year older either.

Two more shots from the centre of Copenhagen this morning. Two more shots with beautiful sunlight. The first, with the DSLR, has eye contact – the connection. Catching this elevates an image. It allows a story to emerge more cleanly.

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A collision of coincidences in Copenhagen

And how lucky to get a sunflare like this.

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See the beauty in me

 

June

There can only be one photograph I can choose from June, 2013, and that is this one of my little boy James doubting what his daddy tells him and needing to check for himself. When the long nights of summer come in, it gets harder to get little children to go to bed at their normal time. Outside it is still daytime, there is still sunshine and there is still lots to do and lots of time left for a little boy for playing and mischief. So, when his dad brings him upstairs and gets him into his pyjamas and tells him it is nighttime and that little boys must go to bed now, that little boy has to doubt it.

– But it is not dark, daddy!

– It is, James, it’s bedtime now. Come on.

– No! It’s not. It’s still daytime. Look.

Then he wriggles free and runs across the bed, stands on his little tipitoes on the radiator, pulls the blinds up and over his head and peers out and of course he is right.

– It is not nighttime! It is not, Daddy.

– But it is bedtime, James!

– Oooh!

I was delighted for two reasons. One, because he being a little rebel and I love that. Why should he not doubt what I am telling him? I hope he doubts me more and more. I hope he corrects me and helps me to learn as  time goes by. And secondly, I love it because it made for a great photo opportunity.

So, my little rebel, continue to check things for yourself. And that’s June!

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June

A Flickr Year – January

Next year will be my eight year on Flickr and what a marvellous photographic journey it has been. When I go back and look at the photos I posted in 2007 and look at those of this year, I see how I have evolved. One of the things I have liked to do over the years to select 12 of my favourite shots – one from each month, at the end of the year. Traditionally, I would post a collage of these together on 31st of December and write a little about each photo. Seeing as I have a blog now, I have decided to write a little more about the twelve I select to represent this year’s photographic journey. When I say twelve, I really mean 24, because I will do the same thing for my iPhone account.

Looking through the photos for January, the one that jumps off the page to me is the photo of James, my son playing in the sunlight and shadows in our living room. With my job, I am lucky in that some of my work can be done from home. This also means that I get to spend a lot of time with my two kids. Time that seems to pass so quickly. I try to make myself realise the fleeting and precious moments I get to spend with them as little children; not always with success when they are driving me crazy when I am trying to word an email (or a flickr comment).

They say having a boy and girl is a gentleman’s family. They say that boys will break your house and girls will break your home. Whatever they say may be true, but the thing I do know is that a little boy is so different to a little girl. My little fella is full of life. I spend most of my time telling him not to touch this, to put that down, to do this, to not to do that, to stop, to stop, to stop… and then his face will light up with a look that is married to mischief.

And then, there are the times he will come when I am sat in front of my computer, push my swivel desk chair around and climb up onto and into me and lie in my arms, make eye contact with me and the world stops. Stops until he starts pulling the hairs on my chin or he reaches out to bang on the keyboard and that instant, when he is still in my arms, when we are together in a silence is gone.

Then with a wriggle and a jump he is off to immerse himself fully in the next thing that will get his enthralled attention for the next few moments. But we are still together.

One of the things to get his attention on a cold January morning was the stripes of shadows that fell on our living room wall as the sun shone in. He danced among them unnoticed for a while until I realised that it made for a fine photograph. Predictably, as soon as the camera came out, the camera got his attention and he walked away from the wall and shadows to come to inspect the device I was pointing at him.

– Go back over to wall, James. Do what you were just doing again. Go on, good boy.

– Daddy’s camera.

– Yes, daddy’s camera. Go on, go back. Look, look at the shadows. Can you make shadows for daddy?/

– Shadows!

And he did. So often with kids they delight you and you want to capture this delight on camera, but once the camera comes out the moment is gone. And they are right. They are instinctive, given to whims and impulses. They rarely recreate a scene, a look or a mood for you. But this morning he did and I managed to get the shot of my little boy being a little boy.

Time will come and he won’t be enthralled by sunlight and his shadow or have his father asking him to ‘go back and do what you were just doing…”, but I hope this photograph will enthral him and bring him back to the wonder he felt that morning.

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January 2013