Tuesday, 28 December 2010

...another to go

Snow, mentioned at the end of previous post, apparently came back for a while covering in white entire town. Looks like forecast works very well, hah...

Just wanted to say Thank You and wish a very Happy New Year to all who visiting this blog from time to time. I hope the next one will bring more creativity and good opportunities to all of us. Cheers!

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

the magic box...

It came with morning post. I remember when i opened parcel delivered by Frank, our great postman. That was about two years ago. All this excitement and impatience as the content was extraordinary. Beautiful hand-made box...magic box as it is possible to take photographs with it (in obvious for me, most beautiful format 6x6 ;D )
I was really impressed and I am every time I have this camera in my hands.
I always admired pinhole photography for its appearance and uniqueness. It is just like handling Holga. Well...almost. In this case, however, lack the lens is not the only difference. Also different built quality and... there is no viewfinder. Here you can only rely on your own intuition. A bit of practice and the effects are fantastic.
Snow has gone at least for now. it’s quite nice feeling to have slightly higher temperature for a change. I decided to go out then with my long time unused pinhole camera.
I had a sort of tension to photograph industrial objects or at least something industrial like.
Not easy subject here. Although Port is very close however there is no access so I had to think about something else...

Scherzer Bridges (1912) on North Wall Quay area - that was the first thought which came into my mind . Very close location and beautiful objects.  Both of them were “Built to allow water based traffic to access the Royal Canal and Spencer Docks, these unusual bridges are also designed to keep seawater out of the docks. No longer operational due to the removal of their diesel engines and their roadway surfaces, they could stop traffic, allow a ship through and close again in four and a half minutes. Now they serve as a reminder of the industrial past of the area” (info archiseek.com).

I spent there over an hour. Sun was about setting down so hard lighting condition especially for my choice of film - Ilford Pan F Plus 50
Over 5 minutes exposure did the job nicely.
Time to go home and get images out of the box ;)
...15 minutes bath in Perceptol and after fixing and washing film was hanging getting ready to scan.
Pan F plus and Perceptol are an amazing combo. It gets out of negative incredible amount of details and great tones.
Please click HERE to see short slideshow with some old photographs taken with zero2000.

...just saw newest forecast. Snow is coming back

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

...back to the roots (cyanotype prints)

I should try it long time ago. Anyway. It's never too late ;)
Chemicals in my drawer were waiting over 2 months. I made a first attempt yesterday. Weather wasn't  good. Too dark.
First image came out with no contrast after almost 30minutes exposure. Paper wasn’t properly coated as well.
I end up with hope that another day will be little bit brighter.
“Hope often blinks at a fool” didn’t work this time. Very bright, sunny day since morning.
I had just a little bit over an hour and half during the day for this experiment. It's just enough time for few prints. I had three negatives digitally upscaled and ready.
First - 10min exposure...not sharp enough.
(I have to find better way of printing negatives in larger scale... )
Second and third about 8 minutes.

This time seeing result i was so excited... almost as when i was opening developing tank with first self developed film. hah...
All images were printed on The Langton Watercolor Aquarelle paper.

Thursday, 21 October 2010

before they will vanish...

There are some things that will never fade away. You just feel it and you know that this is IT.
...taste and flavour of good coffee, sound of vinyl record, analogue photography and modernism, especially expressed by the architecture. That's My Things.
I would like to stop here for a while. Modernist architecture.
It is interesting how much the form may affect the senses. When i am entering into such a place i am shivering. I am amazed by simplicity and functionality of surrounding forms. Everything is so fresh, so thoughtful, so genuine. I would say there is even something mystical in it.
I tried to pass these feeling some time ago during work on one of my projects. To see results please click HERE.
Over a week ago I had the opportunity to admire a few such structures. Actually two...just two... Mentioned some time ago on this blog Open House Dublin 2010 made it possible.
The Original Dublin Airport Terminal (Desmond FitzGerald, completed in 1940), Berkeley Library (ABK Architects, completed in 1967), Busáras (Michael Scott, completed in 1953) and Liberty Hall (Desmond Rea O’Kelly, completed in 1965). That was my short list. Unfortunately I couldn't make it into the first two.  Very busy time. But i celebrated every minute in the other two.
Busáras by Michael Scott - real office machine, full of live. It's one of the first post Second World War examples of the International Modern style in Europe. During the tour which took over half an hour i  felt like traveling in time.

Busaras, entrance to the offices
Busaras, canteen
 ...and Liberty Hall - fantastic, simple structure...forgotten and totally underrated. I know, i know - there is just little percentage of people who appreciate Beauty of its form. I am one of them!
Unfortunately I could see there just the entrance hall and the top floor. Admittedly we could soak up the magnificent panorama of Dublin (please see photographs - just click HERE) over there, but it was not what I was looking for. I wanted to see more within the building itself, i wanted to feel it...not enough time and no access made it impossible.

Liberty Hall, entrance hall
The sad thing is that Liberty Hall may be demolished in the nearest future to be replaced by “something new”. Why? Why not renovate it, restore the former splendor and adapt to modern requirements? Its so simple...
I found a very comprehensive website with lots of information about this disappearing symbol of Dublin. If you will have some spare time please watch this FILM (click the link). Fantastic document!
I am still thinking about photographing these buildings in a broader aspect. Maybe it will happen one day...before some of them will vanish...

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

moving fast...

Friday’s morning alarm clock rang at 4.15am. Last overview of the equipment, quick coffee and about an hour later i was already on the airport waiting for my flight to Dusseldorf.
I was hired by Marlin IT Ltd to photograph one of their energy trading workshops. Marlin IT is a UK based company specialized in real time energy market simulations, operational trading software and IT services.
The last stage of my trip was 2 hours in train from Dusseldorf to Aachen, my final destination. Workshops (one of many conducted by Marlin in various European cities ) took a place in Trianel headquarters. I managed to get there just after lunch. Beautiful, sunny, bright day, nice and spacious room surrounded by glass walls gave very good light for my work. Another over two hours were fulfilled with concentration and at the same time fantastic atmosphere and vivid reactions of participants. About 4.30pm workshops were finished.

Now the trickiest part - i had just about four hours for the departure of my plane to Dublin.
Before i had to get to train station, then again about 2 hours in the train to Dusseldorf, then get to the airport and break through few security stages. I found it more time consuming and complicated then even on Heathrow Airport which was the busiest one in my opinion...up to now ;)

I made it! Everything on time. Busy and very exciting day

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

the light in the darkness...

A few words about further stage of acquiring an image - printing...
Or it’s rather about my little struggle to get it right ;)
I was usually renting darkroom in Gallery of Photography . Well arranged and quite comfortable until it’s getting too crowdy...
Then in my head appears an idea of creating such a magic space in my place. Darkroom with unlimited access ;)

Slowly all equipment starts to arrive. First was obviously enlarger - fantastic LPL C6700 in great condition, then the remaining bits and pieces. After a few weeks I was ready to fly ;)
Just a quick visit in the best photography shop in Dublin - John Gunn Camera Shop and after a very nice conversation with John (as usually) i left it with big bags full of chemicals and papers.
That’s the end of nice part for a while. First few hours were totally wasted - flat images and very strange way of producing them, extremely different that the ones i knew from gallery...
Something was wrong with “spotless” (at the beginning) LPL.
I checked color switches, lamp and other bits and pieces.I made little cleaning. Got even fantastic Rodenstock Rodagon 80mm f4 (Thanks David!)... all seams to be fine.
Another try and another few hours wasted...unfortunately.
I decided to buy filters and try it as B&W enlarger. At the same time i bought a couple of bulbs...just in case.
And that was it!!!

....Bulb mounted in enlarger was obviously veeery old. I was misled by its look.
My darkroom finally works perfectly as it should. It became truly magic capsule where the time is not important anymore.

Monday, 20 September 2010


Some time ago i wrote a few words about shifting of interest and leaving architecture aside. That's true but it concerns work rather than subject matter. Architecture will always fill my head and soul in both ways - design and photography of course. It's probably one of this profession you are keeping forever. Doesn't matter where you are and what you are doing, there is a strange power forcing you to think about surrounding space and forms.

Presented in this post photographs are a kind of record of such observations and thoughts during period 2006-2008. That was the time when i could consider myself as an architectural photographer. (to see a few more photographs please click  HERE).
After that i decided to face many other subjects: street photography, portraits and so on... Architectural photography however stays as a very important one.

Next month starts Open House Dublin 2010 - Ireland’s biggest architecture festival. I am looking forward to it. Its an amazing opportunity to visit different buildings where usually access is denied, its an opportunity to talk to people about it and to exchange point of views and finally to photograph places and forms :)
I have my list of buildings i’d love to see...unfortunately many tours were booked out in first hour :( 
Well, I hope to see some of them anyway...

Monday, 13 September 2010

walking through the streets

So called “bad” part of the autumn is here. Time of dark, rainy and very humid days. It may be considered as a depressing but not for me ;)
It's rather inspiring ...
Dublin looks very special and so different in such an aura. It sounds and smell different.
I love city. It’s not only about Dublin but generally. I feel good surrounded by concrete, noise, lights. I know it may sound strange... but that's Me ;)

Such a mood makes me go on the street with my old good Holga 120GN again. This little (sort of), plastic camera with its imperfect or even crappy lens adds something special into images taken with it. They are darker, stronger in a mood way and very soft in perception. These photographs runs the other senses.
I decided to keep it in my bag for at least next few weeks. I couldn’t really find the time lately for documenting streets but this is solution and actually the right time.
I don't need heavy equipment or light meter. All i have to do is watch everything around, soak up the atmosphere of the city and concentrate... then estimate distance (the way of focusing in Holga) and record it.
Beside that i can keep shooting in my favorite square format :)
It is like traveling in time...

Thursday, 2 September 2010


I know Edita and Mel since 2006. We shared office space spending all days at computers and tones of paper. We shared passion to architecture. It’s still there (somewhere) but it has been slightly shifted aside...at least in my case. Let’s say - different sort of priority.
Now is the time when we can express ourselves in more personal way.
Edita and Mel created Monofaces. Their form of expression became painting portraits. Each of them is exceptional and the only one. They call it "Snap shots" as a record of one particular moment.

We arranged photo session over a week ego. Since then i wasn't really able to develop films. Preparations to mentioned in previous post exhibition kept me quite busy for a while. Its done now anyway :)
That was the third portrait session with artists after Qasim Riza Shaheen and David Noone .
It’s always a big pleasure to work with such people as they seam to read in your mind, guessing your ideas which makes cooperation very smooth.

..some technicalities ;)
Two cameras - Graflex Crown Graphic and Hasselblad 500c/m, two films - HP5 Plus 4x5 and TMY-2 400 (tmax 400) 120 ...and as always only existing light. TMax 400 is my kind of film. Always doing the job perfectly.
We had nicely lightened spaces however i was pushing films to ISO1600. I am always doing it. Shooting with box indicated speed is almost impossible to me, especially with faster films ;) heh...
It always gives a kick and image looks better, it’s more expressive.

At the end have a look at Monofaces webpage please: www.monofaces.net

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

weekend in St. Stephen’s Green

...yes, two days spent in the park, well...almost. That was the first time i took part in Peoples Photography Ireland. For the first time it was not only about exhibiting but about interaction with viewers as well. That’s really fantastic experience to be with people to see their reaction and talk to them.
I am looking forward to next year edition and at the same time i would like to thank all who managed to be there.

Sunday, 8 August 2010

bigger, heavier, slower

It's been a long time since last post. Hopefully you are still there, all of you who read this blog ;)
I am trying to slow down being very busy for the last few weeks. It's time to come back online ;)

“Bigger, Heavier, Slower” - ints not necessary about me...(well,  maybe a little bit haha) but about next step into the magic world of film... large format photography.
More to carry around, longer time to take a one shot and sometimes the only shot. 
Yesterday i spent few hours at UCD campus. Quiet area during weekend. It was my second day of shooting with Graflex Crown Graphic so it’s still just a beginning but very exciting one. Four loaded film holders, lots of optimism and zest.
At some point two guys approached to me. I was setting camera for my second shot this day. They were very interested what am i doing with this weird looking thing ;). They start to ask questions: where am i setting aperture and shutter speed, how many shots can i take at once and so on...? Conversation began to evolve. Suddenly one of them switched on his digital camera and took a photograph in the same direction i was taking just before our chat has started. Then he turned to me and shrugging says “it’s so handy”, pointing the time he spend doing it (one or two seconds) and showing an image on screen ;)
They couldn't really get it why am i using film, why this sort of camera, why am i spending so much time to get an image.
The only answer, the only word describing it is -  Passion.
Photography for me is something special, something more then just a quick snapshots.
I like to slow down to take a photograph, i like to think and focus on every frame. Finally i like to play with all chemicals in darkroom looking as the picture appears.
...after all satisfaction is guaranteed.
4x5inch is a totally different format then the one i use to shoot with, 6x6cm. I am still a big admirer of square images however large format makes everything more complex, maybe a little bit more complicated but amount of details and quality i can get with it is incredible.
...so, two days it’s really nothing yet. more practice is indispensable. No questions about that.

Sunday, 20 June 2010

...the Show

In about two weeks starts PhotoIreland Festival , the biggest photo show in Ireland. Great time for people who loves photography. Lots of wonderful events but Exhibition at National College of Art and Design, (2-4 of July) is the one I would highly recommend.(Full details HERE)
You will see there works of my colleagues, very talented photographers.
Various themes and media. 
I will exhibit there a little project ‘Modernism as a Memorial of Functionality and Form’ - 6 silver gelatin prints showing pure modernist architecture at its best.

Thursday, 17 June 2010

David Noone Revisited...

I was asked about year ago to take few portraits of David for publicity purposes. David is a Dublin based writer, musician and actor. A long time collaborator with the artistic collective The Colour and Form Factory. He has just completed a collection of poetry and images in collaboration with groups founder K.J.Nolan titled 'My Cat’s Vicious Drunk'.
We had Very nice and effective photo session with lots of good images however I decided to repeat it. Maybe it’s just my obsession but Images taken at this time with DSLR camera were too flat. i wanted to have a good portrait with all tonality range and almost three dimensional touch given by properly exposed film. We agreed to repeat session last Sunday. Over two hours walking through Ranelagh with nice coffee break in the morning sun.
...And here we go.

Thursday, 10 June 2010

...into the past

In the last months of 2009 I worked on the project "traces of human existence". When wandering through places that could serve as a good material for the project I visited a wonderful old victorian building - The Pigeon House Power Station. This place made a great impression on me. Its space, atmosphere, emptiness and silence encompassing it ...
In the first moment I didn’t know where to start as almost every corner was worth photographing. Even though only one of the pigeon house photographs made a place in the final draft, the remaining has created other interesting mini-series.

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

reality recorded...

This afternoon i have received a little package. Inside was a copy of my first book . Very small, simple or even ascetic in form selection of street photographs (my main object of interest)
“Faces of the City. Streets of Dublin” is a reality recorded on black and white negatives during last 2 years.

[7x7in, 24 photographs included 2 on the cover, produced with Blurb.com service]

Monday, 7 June 2010

fashion like...

Just a couple of months ago i wouldn’t say it’s possible. Artificial tuning and posing in fashion photography deprive it of reality which is extremely important to me. When taking photographs i document what i see, reality.
A few weeks ago I asked Alex, a friend of mine, to help me with my little project called “coffee flavour” . After this session we decided to try again with something different. It supposed to be a series of environmental portraits but with a slightly different approach: an abandoned place, simple old wedding dress and a few other elements used only for this session. Sounds very stagy...i know, not my cup of tea again. Anyway, I just wanted to try.
Medium format camera, a few rolls of film, quite good light and a bit odd place (hah... i love odd places) and here we go...my first attempt to sort of fashion photography...... I am not there yet but it was fun and a good experience as Alex is great on both sides of the lens as you can see on her website and attached HERE images.
Just another step into the other side of me...

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

On Stage...

Another assignment and another fantastic venue. This time Vicar Street - place where the most interesting gigs in Dublin are having place. I was responsible for photographing stage lighting designed by Cine-Electric Ltd , (Ireland's longest established Film, TV, Theatre & Event lighting provider ) for Simon Amstell's two performances . Simon is an award-winning English comedian and television presenter. Two performances were shot for a DVD by Universal Pictures UK. Perfect place as i said before and a perfect lighting. I was using here digital equipment again. We had not even 40 minutes for shooting. Exposure up to 10s to get everything properly so not much time however everything went smoothly. I’d like to thank Conor Jacob of Cine Electric’s lighting crew (who was a board operator on this show as well) for fantastic cooperation.

Monday, 31 May 2010

...longer exposure

My another approach to landscape photography. Long exposure coastal scapes - the only sort of landscape images which draw my attention. I was trying this before a few times as some of you (who know my flickr stream) already know.
I chose Dun Laoghaire. Very nice, diversified coastline and it’s just a few minutes by Dart form my place. Weather this time wasn’t really helpful. Too much sun, lack of clouds and wind is the first thing to avoid in such situation ;) heh...however that was the only time i could get round to it.
Film i usually use for this purpose is an Ilford Pan F Plus. Wonderful contrast and tonality range. Unfortunately i am not really happy with developing process this time. experiments, experiments... ;)

Thursday, 27 May 2010

Portrait of The Artist

I met Qasim once again two days after ‘Liliquoi Blue - God Made Me a Boy’ opening night. We spent couple of hours in town and in gallery working on his portraits. This time i was using my beloved analogue medium format equipment and black and white films.
I am very happy with the result. Cooperation was really good and i got exactly what i was looking for.
The rest of photographs from my selection you can see HERE

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

The night at CityArts

On 22 of April I was on assignment at CityArts Gallery, documenting the opening night for ‘Liliquoi Blue - God Made Me a Boy’ by Qasim Riza Shaheen . Qasim is an artist based in Manchester, UK.
Project consists of three video adaptations entitled Father I have sinned I, II and III, and an accompanying publication.
It was very interesting experience due to artist‘s deep personal approach to presented body of work.
At the same time very difficult light condition and need of use digital equipment (quite odd for me... well, it had to happen at some stage) made this night quite challenging, technically speaking ;) ...
Here I’d like to thank David Monahan for all support.

Presented images are just a little part of quite significant series.

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

...let's call it Introduction

OK...here I come with a new blog. why new? I already started one some time ago but unfortunately it died quite fast or rather it’s in a sort of coma.
this one is different in every aspect. here I decided to show and talk about my professional activity which is sometimes far away from my main interest - black and white analogue photography. it’s time to extend the area of operation ;)
some back posts are ready for publication so see you soon here.
welcome to “the other side of me...”