The 300 Effect

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300 hasn’t made it to Ireland yet but I started seeing blogs talking about it yesterday. Most are reviewing it but Photocritic looked at recreating the same style of photography that appears in the film with the help of graphic artist Jason Niedle.

Last week’s Time magazine has a two page spread on the movie. It was interesting to read that because of the high tech CGI used in the film, the only “real” things in the movie were the actors and little else. They had to use their initiative too as the film was almost completely shot inside a studio against a blue screen. I’m looking forward to seeing it!

The trivia page is full of interesting, err, trivia. Yay, they used Linux too!

Ten visual effects vendors contributed to the film, spread over three continents.

The filmmakers used bluescreen 90% of the time, and greenscreen for 10%. They chose blue because it better matched the lighting paradigm (green would have been too bright) and because red garments (a la spartan capes) look better when shot over blue.

There was one day of location shooting, which was for the horses that were shot for the ‘approaching sparta’ scene.

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Two very different reviews of the movie: The Star offers a serious look at brutal Spartan society while Kevin Costello says, “I’m not nearly as straight as I often claim” after watching all the bare male skin and asking, “Is there any man in this film with less than a washboard stomach?”

Public Telephone

An old and empty phone booth lies neglected. Notice the lock and bolt on the door? I get the feeling this booth hasn’t contained a phone in a long time..

This is the other side of the window pictured yesterday in the mystery hospital.

The best way to show off the GIMP

I just read that a portable version of image manipulation program, GIMP, is now available for download.

If it works well enough that’s going to get a permanent home in my USB memory stick and unlike “Portable Photoshop”, this one is completely legal to copy and share.

GIMP Portable version 2.2.13 has been released. GIMP Portable is the full-featured GIMP image and photo editor bundled with a PortableApps.com launcher as a portable app, so you can edit your photos and images on the go. This new release updates the included GIMP to 2.2.13, adds Vista compatibility, correctly cleans up GTK’s bookmark and thumbnail files and features a greatly improved startup speed thanks to the new launcher’s plugin processing.

I love you

A love message written on a wall for someone special.

“I love you”

This is the second time I’ve posted a love message on my blog. Those messages are the most basic human communications of our age and before. Many thousands of years ago men were writing on cave walls. How little has changed? Graffiti is everywhere and it doesn’t take much imagination to scrawl a message to a loved one. I wonder who made this message and for whom? Are they still together?

This message is written on a wall in an old building on the grounds of a Cork Hospital. After I took a number of photos around those ruins a security guard approached me and asked what I was up to and that I stop shooting. He was nice enough and friendly, but he said I’d need a permit to shoot on hospital grounds. I didn’t argue with him, and thankfully I was almost finished anyway.

A Photographer’s rights around the world

Do you recklessly walk around urban areas with your camera like I do? Are you worried?

A few days ago I received an email from John Hennessy asking me about street photography and especially what rights and responsibilities do I as a photographer have when out with my camera on the street.

Many moons ago I linked to this article on photographers rights in Ireland but it’s worth revisiting again because of the comments added since. Comment 11 by Bill is especially useful going into further detail about different scenarios but also making it obvious that the law really hasn’t been tested or is complete.

Irish law has been quite grey in a few areas when in comes to photography and publication of certain types of photos. For example the taking of a photo of a garda while on duty is not illegal however the publication of said photo is, if the member of the force is identifiable.

The photography of minors is a very dangerous area for any photographer and one area I avoid like the plague.

Blasphemy is still illegal in this country, therefore pictures that are considered so will get you into all sorts of hot stuff. This extends to artistic photos too.

A post on Digital Photography School asks Do Photographers have Rights? There are links to photographer’s rights articles from around the world so if you’re going to do a little traveling it might be a good place to start before you get into trouble!

Jpg Magazine’s issue 9 was dedicated to street photography and Chris Weeks reviewed it. You can download a PDF sample of the issue which I have done, but I haven’t got around to reading it yet. Chris likes it but he doesn’t pull any punches in his review. His review is harsh but I’m tempted to subscribe now..

Clouds over the Lough

Clouds gather and block out the sun over the Lough in Cork last year. The display was beautiful as light wispy clouds and dark brooding rain clouds skirted across the sky.

The sun made one final effort to shine, but the clouds won out and it started to rain moments later.

Sleeping it off in Cork City

As a rule I don’t photograph the homeless very often but I don’t think the sleeping gentleman in this photo was homeless. Rather a heavy night on the town I suspect.

This was snapped while walking past Marks & Spencers on Patrick’s Street last year. I spotted the security people and had the camera ready without breaking stride.

I wonder what happened next?