19:22 Southbound & The Third Man

“In Italy for thirty years under the Borgias, they had warfare, terror, murder, bloodshed. They produced Michaelangelo, da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland, they had brotherly love, five hundred years of democracy and peace, and what did they produce? The cuckoo clock”

(Harry Lime: played by Orson Welles, The Third Man)

The best part of winter is the early, cold windy nights that draw in very quickly here in the UK.

I love the night time in a major city such as Manchester. Street signs and window displays light the gloomy wet paths and direct you round this Victorian jungle.

It is also a great time to capture people going about their worlds in a film noir atmosphere.

Manchester is full of old buildings that in the dark give off a sense of claustrophobia and dread, as if they peer down on you in disgust from their high rise arrogance and compel you to the shadows of the cobbled streets below.

At night it reminds me of the dark street scenes from the classic Noir “The Third Man” a wonderful comical film that is not as entertaining as it is shocking, once you find out what Harry Lime has been up to.

Stop to look at a metro station in Central and you are transported to that Vienna feel of gothic undertones and religious intent at one side of the platform.

And on the other a 21st century social update bringing you subtly back from nostalgia.

Yes, Manchester at night can easily be mistaken for the set of The Third Man.

Of course you have to be in the right place and time to transport back to old town, and it is fare to say you could be anywhere and find yourself on your favourite movie scene.

So look up, you never know what you might find….. Old Man.

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Passing Comments


Sunday morning in New Street. Intent artists tune into mundane conversations.

Birmingham City. Yashica 635. Kodak T-Max. F11. 1/250 sec

Hitman

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Canal Street, Manchester
Iphone 5C
Snapseed

Infectious Smiles & Ice Creams

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Chilling out in the warm bank holiday evening sun. Luisa clocked my camera. We chatted for a moment about the Yashica and photography in general before I plucked up the courage to ask for a portrait.

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Luisa was great fun to photo. She has a wonderful flirtatious personality and a glowing smile that made working with her very easy. Definitely fast witted and funny by far. It was a delight to spend time chatting to her whilst she sold ice creams to the happy crowd.

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The Lost Carnival
June 2016

Yashica 635
Ilford HP5 120mm F8 1/125
Epson V550

Reassurance

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Yashica Electro 35GSN.
F1.7.
Ilford XP2 400asa.
Epson V550

Calling In A Favour

Calling In A Favour

You all know I love photography but I have an even greater love for old Film Noir movies. The grit and grim of a classic like The Big Combo makes for a great night in.

I have been away from my camera for a while (that is a lie, I have been concentrating on photography on the street) and have missed getting into a project.

For some time now the idea of creating another Low Key image has been mulling around my mind.

I wanted to create an image of dread and despair. A moment of uncontrolled emotion and a dislike. I hope I have achieved that.

The set up was easy. Strobe with a grid 45 degrees left of the camera. Speed light with a snoot (amazing what you can make with a piece of packing paper) behind me and to my left. A cookie (blind) made from a box from work (We had so many left over I thought no one would mind).

A cheap white shirt and tie that has been destroyed with food colouring. (Not a splash on the bed, very proud of myself).

And lastly…… my 1970’s phone. Which still works perfectly.

There has been some dodging and burning around eyes and skin. I really enjoyed myself and fancy doing some more. Though not tonight. My face is a pink colour due to the food colouring.

Let me know what you think. I appreciate all comments and opinions.

The End Of The Silver Screen & Busking

The Futurist

This is one of the last great examples of early purpose built cinema architecture left in the UK and even if the rest of the building cannot be saved. The facade should. Sometimes the cost of keeping something so unique may seem unrealistic and keeping up with the times is the best option. However that is the sort of thinking that has left most towns and cities losing their character. Liverpool is a leading example of retaining it’s original architecture and the Futurist should also be saved. It would be the only early cinema in the city and with the right money, love and care could become the centre piece of Lime Streets redevelopment.

Think of it like this….. When this cinema was built. The golden age of the silver screen was still a unique experience for many. People sat together in pure comfort and warmth. They laughed together, cried together, became scared together and fell in love with their fav film stars together.

No other building holds so many historic moments and has told so many stories than a cinema.

Keep the Futurist for the next generations, let them enjoy her proud stature. Let them wonder about her past.

There is still time to save her. Please make the right decision. Keep her standing and telling stories.
(Followers. Please help. No matter where you are in the world. If like me you have a fondness for nostalgia take a moment and sign the petition to save this building.

<a href=”https://www.change.org/p/save-the-facade-of-the-former-futurist-cinema-building-lime-street-liverpool&#8221; rel=”nofollow”>www.change.org/p/save-the-facade-of-the-former-futurist-c…</a>
Thank You )

Salford (Rex) Cinema & a Pin Hole Kodak

Salford Cinema

Beginning life as a church (1864) The church closed and the building was radically altered and a cinema license was obtained in 1912.

The exterior is quite ornate for such a small cinema with the front and part of the side tiled in decorative terracotta tiling with ornate round windows with carved laurel leaves and swags. There is an ornate balustrade along the top with a cupola temple structure above a corner entrance. The words “Salford Cinema” are carved on a half circle ornate pedement at the middle top of the frontage.

The cinema changed hands in 1921 and again in 1937 when the name was changed to the Rex Cinema (even though “Salford Cinema” was clearly carved in the pediment.

The cinema suffered from the advent of television and the slum clearances which had taken most of the customers form the area. The Rex Cinema closed as a cinema in 1958 and lay empty for some time until 1967 when it opened as a bingo hall.

The opening ceremony was performed by actress “Violet Carson” better known as “Ena Sharples” from the soap opera “Coronation Street” who was also a one-time cinema pianist in the silent days.

The bingo stopped in 1985 and the building has come full circle and reopened as the New Harvest Christian Fellowship, a Gospel Church. The Rex has been designated as a Grade II Listed building.
I came across this cinema whilst driving around trying to find a car park for the hotel we was staying at a year ago. Being on a cross road it popped out and the Salford Sign had me hooked. I wanted to capture the building in a retro form and decided to come back with a vintage camera. Shooting through an inch of glass that is reflecting upside down is hard work yet very rewarding. I love how this old camera still takes pin sharp pin hole shots even to this day. Taken using a 1924 Kodak Brownie and Fomapan 100 ASA 120mm Film.

Keeping a watchful eye on the Competition

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Working Men’s Club

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Turn a corner in old London Town and you are reminded of the past and present.

Down a dusty old London side street, leading into a busy open market stands a grand image of working life of yesteryear. It took me by surprise at the time. This wonderful moment on a massive board and no-one had noticed it.

I was drawn to it straight away (I love anything to do with how we used to live), when I noticed this guy on the phone just sitting there.

It struck me just how powerful the moment was. Here was a guy, sitting on a chair, using a mobile phone. A classic scene of 21st Century lifestyle with the back drop of 1930’s living perfectly in line with each other.

I had to get in close to take the picture and for the guy to notice me. I hoped he would become a little annoyed. I wanted him to look at me in the same way the gentlemen where in the picture. After standing there for a few minutes just looking at him he gave the look you see.

For me this is a perfect example of old and new and how technology, fashion and attitude may have changed over time, our personal living has stayed the same.

This was my favourite photo from a day shooting in London and probably one of the small handful of images I am really proud of.

Taken with FijiFilm X20 in Green Market London.