Writing

I write about work in progress, the work of other people and the occaisional random rant.  The categories broadly link some themes as does the tag cloud.

Selfie

Little Races

I’ve been sitting on this forever.  I have wanted to make work about the experiences of transracial adoptees but I’ve been shy and unconfident and full of excuses why I should not do it and lazy, I’m prepared to admit that I am capable of lazyness, just not very good at it because I am also a high achiever when it comes to feeling guilty about lying on the sofa watching daytime TV. Anyhoo, I got made redundant at the end of July from a parody employer.  I sat about plotting revenge for a while and then I thought fuckit, …

People

I’m thinking a lot about portraits at the moment as I am collaborating with other trans-racial adoptees to create portraits that represent us in a way we feel comfortable with our own image.  So I’m reviewing other portrait work I have done.  The relationship between the sitter and the photographer is so much more than point and shoot.  There is a skill to sitting.  There is a skill to managing the pose from both sides of the lens.  I took each of these photographs for distinct reasons and I can see what I was thinking about when I made the …

In Cuba

I stood around by the road a lot in Varadero.  A couple of times I was stopped and people tried to engage me in conversations about the cameras I was using and why I was using them.  I got that through gestures as my spanish is strictly menu spanish, which is about as much use as chocolate teapot in Cuba because aside from beans, rice and pig, the menu was mysterious unless you ate with the other tourists, but that menu was prohibitively expensive and frequently dire. I stood by the roads because the cars are fascinating, but everyone bangs …

The Civil Contract of Photography

I am reading this and it is difficult but also rewarding. I am reading it because I am photographing other TRAs, creating portraits and having discussions about the experience of transracially adoptive/fostered lives.  I am not investigating tracing or tales of reunion with the unnerving prospect of Davina McCall and Nicky Campbell hoving into sight and engineering tearful reunions.  I’m after what the lived experience of being in a world that cannot recognise you as part of what you know to be your family without verbal and written explanations. Azoulay focusses on citizenship, the implication of equality that this term …

Static

This started because I had a massive hangover due to some karoake related parisian shenanagins during a long damp boozy night before.  Me and two friends. who also felt fragile, went to Chartier a no booking super popular restaurant.  I decided to leave my pinhole in the coat rack while we ate.  They thought I was insane, which may be the case, but it’s also true that it worked so I won.  Just over a year later, I was on a train in Brazil, which had been recommended by the same two people and I found myself wondering if like …

Quis Est Iste Qui Venit

‘I suppose you will be getting away pretty soon, now Full Term is over, Professor,’ said a person not in the story to the Professor of Ontography… This is the first sentence of the story ‘O whistle and I’ll come to you my lad‘, if you don’t know it, I cannot recommend it too highly.  Though it is somewhere in the murky area of ghost and horror fiction, not of the grand guignol school, but of the creepy unnerving type that lurks about in the dark corners of your room after you have read the final word, so forewarned is …

The Indefinitive Moment

Much of the vocabulary around photography is about stopping time for us to examine it, that decisive moment notion that the purpose of photography is to capture the fleeting and from that flows the idea that there is some ownership of what is in essence a coincidence.  This is further compounded by the notion that there are some special photographers whose shutterclicks are some how more precise, more intelligent, more special than those of mere mortals and with that magical gesture they are better at seeing than the rest of us.  Well permit me to say, that is just bollocks. …

Me and my brothers

This isn’t a suntan and I haven’t been on holiday

So I got my first “You’ve got a lovely suntan” of  June yesterday. The person who asked me realised half way through that she was asking a potentially problematic question and veered off into the world of holidays and sunshine, but the damage was done. It didn’t help that I was at an opening and the people I was with had been at the sauce for a while so their I’m going to pretend I don’t know how much that pisses Tina off faces didn’t quite coalesce fast enough for my new friend to not catch it and start looking …

Gas and Garbage

In July 1991 I arrived at Gdynia, the Polish seaport where the cracks in communism had not long since opened up into crevasses and swallowed a 70 year old ideology.  I arrived on a boat from Tilbury because I had thought it would be a really cool way to arrive in Poland.  We had sailed up the River Tees for some reason on our journey and I’d witnessed the last gasps of the heavy industry that had informed Ridley Scott’s landscape in Blade Runner.  Then we’d sailed over Denmark and into the Baltic finally stopping at the green and rusty …