I went to a great photographic exhibition at Newcastle upon Tyne City library today. A few months ago my daughter enrolled on a digital photography course run by the Digital Voice project (funded by, among others, Newcastle City Council) for 11 to 18 year olds. The course (which was, incidentally, free of charge !) culminated in each youngster producing a portfolio of work, elements of which form the basis of the exhibition. The resulting images are excellent and demonstrate a range of acquired photographic, visual art and digital skills. For the most part, I understand that the images were produced using the Apple iPad and Snapseed imaging software. The exhibition can still be viewed, during next week, in the main entrance (2nd. floor) of the City library. If you can’t make it in person, the images can be seen by clicking the above link to the on-line gallery. It is also hoped that these and other images will form part of the NewcastleGateshead Juice festival (25 October – 3 November, 2013) [see http://www.newcastlegateshead.com/juice-home ] .
The young image-makers involved were clearly very proud of their achievements and rightly so – it’s nice to see that there is still support and encouragement of the arts, particularly for younger children and teenagers. Well done and particular thanks to tutors Julie and Robin of Digital Voice and to the funding agencies. Keep up the good work.
I continue to enjoy the immediacy of ‘Street’ photography and the potential creativity of ‘Urban’ photography. From time to time and perhaps inevitably, I wonder whether to change my camera to a one specifically suited to these genres. Nothing wrong with that of course and ease of use, image quality and fitness for purpose are clearly important considerations. That said, it’s not all about more and more megapixels and emulating past-masters of photography.
My camera of choice, at least for now, is the Fuji S9600 – certainly not the most suitable for street photography but one which I’ve used for some time. It’s sometimes frustrating, particularly when focusing and with the slight but irritating time-lag but its feel and comfort in my hand outweighs those negatives. In short, it’s like an old glove – one that may not always keep me warm but which I still like to wear.
The S9600 is certainly not the most capable of my current cameras but it is the one I prefer in street/urban situations, at least for the moment. I will change before too long (probably in favour of the Fuji X Pro 1 or similar) but before then, I will continue to wear out the one I have and make it work hard for me.
To quote the exceptionally talented and creative American photographer, Chase Jarvis [ http://www.chasejarvis.com ] :
“The best camera is the one that’s with you”
I try to bear in mind too that the likes of Weegee created timeless ‘street’ images with a camera as cumbersome as a house brick. So, whether I have an iPhone camera, a Fuji or Leica M9 with me, I will strive to take the best street/urban shots I can. My best camera is the one I have with me.