Thursday, March 30, 2006

Now Here's A Scary Thing

Many years ago, I lived with my ex wife in our first starter home living opposite us were Paul and Jeanette. They had a son who was called Danny. To make ends meet jeanette went out to work in the evenings and sometimes I helped paul look after his son. Yep you've guessed it.

This is his son. The lead singer in the band "The Waheys" I am so looking forward to seeing him next week when I have to photograph his band at the Met Lounge. So when he's really trying hard to impress the girls and be really cool I'll point out to him that I had, on occasion, changed his nappy.
Do you think this is too cruel a trick to play?

Rock on dudes Posted by Picasa

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Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Art


Yes I know it isn't in focus and I know it's grainy but it's art innit. It's a statement in light, shade and colour. The original image has got to be worth thousands and go down in the annals of time as a great work. Especially if Charles Satcchi buys it.
What about those firebricks in the Tate gallery? £24,000. I could go down to the builders merchants and get 120 of the same and make my own pile of bricks, it would be the same in every detail except no bastard is going to give me £24,000 for it. Ok so how about I go into the Tate with a wheel barrow full of MY bricks and swap them for the original bricks. No one would know. They'd never spot the difference. I take the bricks home and rebuild the pile on my patio. Now the question is would the bricks on my patio be still worth £24,000 OR would my new bricks purchased yesterday from Wickes be worth £24,000? Or should I just cut my losses and build a barbecue with them?
Carl Andre the guy who "made" the "pile of bricks"(quote from The Evening Standard) defended his art by saying " A lot of people find profound meaning in this abstract balance between the spiritual and the material, which manifests harmony, proportion and pure order." he also said " a place is an area within an environment which has been altered in such a way to make the general enviroment more conspicuous." in other words it's bollocks. He was laughing all the way to the bank with his faux philosophical arguments about art. I guess I'm a philistine because I'm one of those who'd say "Give me £24,000 and I'll make you a pile of bricks." in fact for £24,000 I'd throw in some other stuff too to make it more interesting. The only difference is he's managed to persuade some poor gullible fool that 120 fire bricks arranged in a pattern is art. Maybe it was his mention that 120 is one of the richest numbers in factors. That is it can be divide by more numbers than most others. Maybe it was the fact that he spent three days standing in the empty space stroking his chin and wondering where to put it for maximum effect. I suppose that means where people wont fall over it. Other defenders of his "art" would say well he thought of it first and you didn't. Well I think of bizarre stuff all the time, perhaps I should carry out some of my more bizarre ideas. Like completely coating a whole rolls Royce with freshly disected Mink fur.
God I feel so cynical today. Someone give me loads of money for my beautiful photograph or else I'll have to think of a good reason why it's art and it will be a load of bollocks I assure you.

Rock on dudes

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Sunday, March 26, 2006

Back To Nature

So last night I was taking photos of the Muddy Promotions Equinox party at the bar Lisboa for the Evening Telegraph. I was pretty cranky, I was cranky before I even arrived, and when I got there and they said I had to pay to get in, I just took a trip to Cranksville Arizona, with my usual, "OK I'll just fuck off home then, I've got better things to do than be here taking photos. So you just explain to the people organising this, why they aint going to get photos in the Evening Telegraph this week." It did the trick.
Today I woke up still cranky. Picked up camera and headed for the hills to chill out. Found these frogs shagging in a pool. You know when you're shagging there could be a bomb explode outside your bedroom and you just wouldn't notice. I guess that's why these guys were so patient with me.
You'd better be quick if you want to catch these. White violets. Two weeks ago, none to be found, today they are almost over and starting to die off.

This DJ guy from Radio One collared me last night. Look I don't listen to Radio One, it's Terry Wogan for me 1st thing, yeah I'm getting old, I know that, so how the hell should I know this guy from Adam? Anyway he invited me to Cambridge to take photos at the Student Union. It's the birthday bash of the famous DJ "Normski". Del says I'm going to hate it.

Tonight Del was giving me a run down of the different music styles, garage, urban garage, house, chilled grooves, drum and bass, techno watsit, apparently it's all down to the beats per minute, and I'm still no wiser. Fuck it! I just take the photos. What do I care? I'd just like to know what the fuck they're talking about. I wonder if Mick in the UK is still about I'm sure he could tell me. He's a clever sod about music.

So Rock on dudes.

May your God be with you. Posted by Picasa

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Friday, March 24, 2006

Using the lights


Here's another grainy but atmospheric shot from last night. I love making use of the stage lighting rather than the flash. And if you look carefully, in the audience is the lovely Abi. Go on say it. You wondered how long it would be before I had a picture of her on my site again.
The musician is a guy called Ross who is lead singer and guitarist for a band called "Wake". Who incidently won the student band of the year competition last year.

Rock on dudes Posted by Picasa

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Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Catching the moment


You wouldn't believe how difficult it is to get a shot like this. You know he's going to do it but you're not sure when. People are constantly distracting you and you turn your head for a second and miss it. So I disciplined myself got into position and just waited constantly clicking on the autofocus. He leapt. Bang. Instantly ten people were crowding round me asking "Did you get it?"
I checked the pic I'd just taken expecting a blur. It was spot on.
"Yes I got it."
I got slapped on the back and congratulated as if I'd just broke a world record. These are the moments. Posted by Picasa

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Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Photoshoot


Saturday night I went to the fair to do a photoshoot for my good friends "Opaque". It was fucking cold. Thanks to my brother for buying me the fingerless gloves so I could keep my hands warm and still operate the camera. This was one of the fun ones we did. I knew the guy who was operating the ride and asked him to let the guys pose on the cup and saucer ride. It wasn't serious and I don't know if they'll use it, but I like this picture. Posted by Picasa

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Thursday, March 16, 2006

Elvis and the Homeless

I went to see Simon the Estate Agent, he was in his office sat back on his executive chair listening to Elvis Radio (sirius13) on his laptop.
"Wanna see the view from Elvis' bedroom, on a live webcam?" he asked enthusiastically.
"Hold me back." I said with just a hint of sarcasm. A few taps later and I'm rewarded of a view of Gracelands, live.
"Great isn't it?"
"Not exactly what I was thinking Simon."
He carried on "... and I was standing just there three weeks ago." he said pointing to a patch of bare earth in the centre of the screen. "Hey wanna come for a ride?"
"Where to?"
"See a house."
So we climbed or sank into his sports car with the rotary engine that does 0-60 in a fleas cough and sped away across town into the Asian Quarter, where india and Pakistan are recreated under a cold leaden sky. Except there are no sacred cows and no goats, well not since someone was arrested a couple of years ago for ritually slaughtering a goat over a drain at the side of the main road. The new Mosque stands in amongst the run down terraced houses, bright green and gold.
We arrive at the house and a young girl is waiting for us, she's wearing a black bomber jacket and jeans, she's shivering. I notice her face all cut and scarred. Simon lets us into the house, it's cold, but for a maisonette, quite large. A pile of unopened letters are scattered across the tiled hallway.
"So what do you think? Do you like it?" Simon asked a huge smile across his face.
"I don't care I just need somewhere to live."
"Yes of course."
"My ex boyfriend beat me up. I was in hospital." That explained the scars and the cuts on her face. "I can't take it anymore, it's too much and...." she burst into tears. I looked at Simon and he looked at me, shit! a girl crying is not our idea of a fun afternoon. "I'm sorry." she said.
"We'd better get you moved in straight away then. Get the papers signed and processed."
"I just want somewhere safe for my son and me."
Simon quickly drew out the papers and handed them over. We left the house and made for the car, the girl stumbled off down the road.

An artist friend of mine turned up today. I hadn't seen him for nearly ten years. Rob Donaldson. He now lives in a long boat on the river near Peterborough. I was very pleased to see him.It's been a good day. And now I've got to take photos of bands.
Life doesn't get much better.

Rock on dudes

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Dragons Den


Went to do some photographs at the Library yesterday, free grub free wine and a chance to meet Doug Richards from BBC2's Dragons Den, except he was too busy chatting up a tall slim blonde girl, to talk to anyone else, so I filled up on canapés and champagne took a few photos, scored myself some home made chocolate, and legged it off home. Perfect.

Rock on dudes Posted by Picasa

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Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Pigeon English

Wednesday night I've got to go to a photoshoot at the Central Library. The BBC will be there filming and Dave the Chef wants me along for moral support. Take a few photos and make him look important.
Meanwhile I'm lined up for a photoshoot with the president of the East of England Bird Fanciers association. That's pigeons to you. I've got to interview the guy and get his thoughts on the the impending doom that is the Bird Flu and how it will affect him and the other pigeon fanciers and what are they doing about it etc etc. Take a few photos and send in my copy to the editor for approval. It's great fun being a journalist and photographer you get to meet so many different people and talk to them. I mean today I found out that it's pointless selling a racing pigeon to another person to race because they fly back to the original owner, so they sell pigeons purely for breeding purposes. One pigeon was sold recently for £200,000.00 There's money to be made racing pigeons. Bert who I spoke to today won £1,400.00 just for having his pigeon come second in a race.

I got paid for the Masons gig. So with the money I scored myself the latest Canon Pixmar photograph printing machine. It's fabulous. Stunning reproductions. I'm going to use the A4 size pictures I've printed for a photo exhibition I'm going to have some time soon. It's all self publicity of course. I'm a publicity whore.

This weekend I've got two photoshoots, one of a band and the other a female singer songwriter who wants some publicity shots. Life doesn't get much better. No doubt you'll see the results in the fullness of time.

Meanwhile

Rock on dudes

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Giving Up Smoking

A good friend of mine, a musician, said to me, "I can't make Tuesday nights music club."
"Why not?" I asked.
"Because I'm shagging on Saturday."
"What's that got to do with it?" I asked rather puzzled. "Is she a none smoker and you'll blow it if she knows you smoke?"
"No nothing like that."
"So what gives."
"Well I've got to give up smoking before hand."
"And..... why does that stop you from coming to music club?"
"Because I've got to give up everything for five days. Fags, coffee, alcohol the lot."
"Five days?"
"That's how long it takes for me to get the nicotine out of my system so I can get a hard on."
"So why the coffee and Alcohol?"
"I need a fag when I drink, and the coffee does something to my blood sugar levels where I need a fag to compensate."
and that dear friends is a fucking good reason to quit, and I mean that in the quite literal sense of a fucking good reason.

But as a post script, I asked "What about after you've done the bizz and had your end away?"
"Oh I start smoking again on Sunday night....."
Marlborough Lights. You can't live with them you can't live without them.
That's a great advertising slogan.

And for the government instead of putting "Smoking kills" on the packets of fags, they should put "Smoking fucks up your love life." maybe more people would take notice.
You don't even get to the vinegar strokes when you're gasping for breath and about to pass out. Hand me my oxygen mask, I'll finish this if it kills me.

Rock on dudes

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Friday, March 10, 2006

Don't Do the Shake'n'vac


You've all seen the adverts. "Do the shake'n'vac and put the freshness back" etc. Here's my advice.

DON'T

You see this particular product has fucked up so many vacuum cleaners you wouldn't believe it. You see it's based on this gritty sandy like substance that you shake on your carpets and then suck up into your vacuum. The only trouble is this gritty sandy like substance gets into the bearings of your machine and acts like a grinding paste and after a while your machine is in landfill.

Now SC Johnson, a family company, know all about this but are not about to admit anything, or advertise anything to that effect. So their policy is to deny everything. However, and here's the clever bit, if you phone SC Johnson, a family company, and tell their customer services that their crummy shake'n'vac has fucked up your vacuum cleaner, a crisp new cheque to the value of your machine will find it's way through your letter box, no questions asked courtesy those lovely people at SC Johnson, a family company, no liability admitted but done as a gesture of good will. Aren't they such lovely people?

Next week Brian, our resident paint and decoration expert, road tests the new 6" Harrison emulsion paintbrush against the Wickes own brand version.

Rock on dudes Posted by Picasa

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Thursday, March 09, 2006

Deep Fat Fryers

OK this is another of my occasional public information bulletins. This time about deep fat fryers.

One of the most common complaints we have about deep fat fryers is people telling us they are too hot because they boiled over.

WRONG!

It's not because they're too hot it's because you are too tight fisted to change the bleedin' oil. Or you've chosen to buy some cruddy own brand vegetable oil.
What's happening? As oil get used over and over again, (yes some people use the same oil for years- really!) the oil absorbs water. Now when it gets hot and you sling in the chips it sparks off a release of this water from emulsion and the whole lot froths up and boils over. Just like in the fire brigade safety videos.
The own brand vegetable oil is very low grade with a high water content and that does the same thing. So stick to branded names like Mazola or something.

How to clean your deep fat fryer. Sling in some of that prewash washing powder and let it stand all night. It'll dissolve the caked up grease a treat.
Better still buy a decent fryer in the first place. Highly recommended is the new Magimix stainless steel deep fat fryer which you can pull apart and put in the dish washer.
Better still don't fry anything at all grill it, it's better for you.

Next week with the help of volounteers we road test "The Rabbit" versus the 12" "Superpenetrator".

Rock on dudes

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Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Zen And The Art Of Redemption

No No No! I knew it was a mistake to post a picture of a train. My reputation is in tatters. How do I redeem myself? How do I stop you from thinking I am a closet train spotter and not a go getting man of the world?
I promise you guys I've never ever jotted down the number of a train or cooed at whether it was a 4-6-2. (Bugger I've just blown it again by showing some knowledge on the subject) And yes I did do the photo shoot for the album cover at Nene valley Railway but that was the bands choice not mine. Honest.
So to make it up to you all here's a shot I took a couple of weeks ago.
You can get arrested for taking photos up a girls dress, but I think I got away with it.
So today for your delight...
your delectation...
let me introduce you to...

Fifi Labelle
Podium dancer and all round fit bird.

Am I forgiven?

Rock on dudes Posted by Picasa

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Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Sunday


So I went out with the camera and thought wouldn't it be cool to photograph the train spotters all lined up taking interminable photos of steam trains, and talking wheel formations. It's like a social comment.
I got to their favourite spot and there was not one train spotter. No anoraked, bobbled hatted, cretin to be seen anywhere. So I took a photo of the "City of Peterborough" steam train myself.
Jaysus there must be more to life than this. Posted by Picasa

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Saturday, March 04, 2006

Missing the Money Shot

 
So I'm at the Met Lounge working for the Evening Telegraph photographing Sheffield Band Milburn, I'm feeling rather shit because I've got manflu, but I carry on. Milburn are pretty good and the crowd are rocking. Unfortunately some young wag in the audience thinks it a hoot to throw beer at the band. When the beer comes complete with accompanying can, the lead guitarist (guy in light blue shirt)has had enough and launches himself over the crowd barrier to "discuss" the matter pugilistically with the young gentleman, punches are thrown and the guitarist has his shirt ripped off his back. It's all over very quickly when the crombie brigade wade in and drag said young gentleman out of the building.
Ten minutes later the editor of the the paper rushes up to me.
"Please tell me you got shots of the fight."
"No."
"You didn't?"
"I messed up didn't I?"
"We could have sold those pictures to NME. Got a packet. That was your money shot."
Bugger!
I've learnt a big lesson.

Rock on dudes Posted by Picasa

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Friday, March 03, 2006

Looking Good On The Dance Floor

I like this picture, the girl was so full of herself, posing and posturing while her boyfriend busied himself with her. It was as if she didn't notice what he was doing as long as she looked good. If ever there was someone that song was written about this could be her. I bet she thinks she looks good on the dance floor. Posted by Picasa

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There But For The Grace of God

Many years ago this guy was a friend of mine. I found him tonight at a nightclub. He used to be an electrician, a very good electrician, he helped run the family business until his wife left him and he fell apart. I can't help but feel how angry he looks, he was the same in every photo I took tonight. He ran up to me and gave me a hug saying how pleased he was to see me and how he'd just got out of prison for the second time. He used to be so kind and gentle, a loving father and husband. Now...? God knows what's going on in his head.

I'm ill. I'm dieing. Of course it's because I'm a man. And we men have much more serious illnesses than girls. I was forced to write an email to my daughter today to warn her I might not survive the night and I'd be dead by morning and to think kindly of me in the future.
She wrote back "So you've got man flu then?"
I wonder if Manflu is in the dictionary yet? It should be. It's a recognised psychosomatic illness brought on by the combination of one X and one Y chromosome. Should you be so lucky as to have two X chromosomes you will of course be immune to man flu and so not die. You will wonder what all the fuss is about. But those of us with both X and Y chromosomes will be on the verge of death and be writing out our wills if we had the strength. I'm going to bed to die now. If this is the last post of this blog you will know you double X's should have taken us more seriously, we get stuff much more severe than you will ever know. That's why we moan so much about it.

Die on dudes Posted by Picasa

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Thursday, March 02, 2006

Chocoholics Look Away Now

Tonight I did a photoshoot for a company that supplies corporate gifts to companies. So I had to shoot pictures of hand made chocolates. I'm very pleased with the results and so is the client. So pleased in fact that in all the time I was there I wasn't offered one chocolate as a sample to try. Bastards!
So later Del and I went to the pub where the topic of conversation was the absence of white dog poo nowadays. Go figure. Then we went on, in our drunken haze, to invent the most bad taste name for a band ever. "Halal Pig" We plan to release the album in Denmark under the assumed names of Paull Lindstrom and Thom Jenson to avert the inevitable backlash and fatwas. In the cold light of day and of a more sober disposition we may change our minds and stick to the original name of Delandahat. Thus not upsetting our Muslim friends. At least we didn't draw any cartoons.

I found a can of "Tiskie" (Strong Polish Lager) in the back of my car that Del inadvertantly left.
I'm sorry Del if you're reading this, but I just drank it.

Rock on dudes

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