London never fails to inspire me. It’s a tiresome place in many ways – the hassle and time involved in getting around it, the uncomfortable humidity of the tube system that slaps you in the face like a hot wet blanket, the carrying of a heavy bag up endless stairs, the crowds of people so wrapped up in their own worlds that they don’t even see you as they push past, the expense of it all – but despite that I love the visual stimulation it offers. I’ve found nowhere round here that affects me in the same way.
The occasion this time was my first workshop for Hairy Goat in nearly a year. It felt good to be out there again, teaching, helping, feeling as if I had a purpose, and of course, bringing in a little income too. I was a bit rusty – my explanations weren’t as polished as they could have been, the cameras were new models that I hadn’t seen before and had to figure out how to work, and I felt at times that I was dredging knowledge up from the sticky, muddy depths of my memory – but I think it went well, considering, and everyone seemed happy enough.
They turned out to be a very self-sufficient group and didn’t need much at all in the way of help when we went photo-walking, so I got a lot of opportunity to take pictures. It was a wet day – a very wet day – but rain can be a gift sometimes and the shots I got owe everything to it. It always interests me to see how students respond when the weather is bad. You can see that some of them would rather be somewhere else – anywhere else that was warm and dry – and some of them stoicly soldier on but without really having their hearts in it. But the ones I always think of as the true photographers get so excited by what they’re seeing that they forget they’re getting wet and cold, and are so absorbed in their photography that they barely notice it. You just know that they will be the ones that will go on to produce really good work.
I took a lot of pictures and they’ve fallen quite naturally into several different themes. I’m going to start with buildings and people, although these aren’t the shots I’m happiest with. I also have some great reflection shots, some more to add to my Fallen series, and some involving red parking lines, all of which I’m very chuffed about. I made myself process these ones first because there were fewer of them to get through, but the others are on their way………