The odd one out

A charity collector stops to watch street entertainers on Patrick’s Street last October. The orange and red costume stands out just a little bit next to the dark clothing of those around him.

I almost jumped with glee when I saw this scene in front of me but the image itself paled when viewed later. The background buildings were too sharp so using layers and a layer mask I blurred the background and cropped the image a little.

Black and White Photography magazine has two articles on street photography this month.

  • “Pavement art” by Eileen Martin is a good overview of the genre with some great photos by members of street photography site, In Public.
  • Juan Buhler is interviewed by Mike Johnston and shows off some of the great photos from his photoblog, Water Molotov. I’ve been subscribed to his street photoblog feed for a few months now although he only publishes thumbnails via RSS unfortunately.

The witch and the balloons

A witch hands out balloons to young kids outside Brown Thomas on a late October Saturday.

Just out of frame of this shot is a woman who has asked for a balloon. The witch explains that the balloons are just for the kids.. I wonder why? More on this later.

King of my world

A child is carried atop his parent’s shoulders on St. Patrick’s Street, Cork a few weeks ago.

I really like this shot, for what reason, I’m not sure. Maybe it’s the brightness and flowery design of the clothing worn by parent and child compared to the passers by. I’m sure both parent and child are in a happy place wandering around town.

“Here’s Health” and a sign advertising the Mutton Lane Inn can be seen in the background.

Friends together

Friends talk and laugh on the street while busy shoppers pass on either side.

Pictured on St. Patrick Street, Cork last October in front of Penneys. I love my wide angle lens!

Stepping out of the crowd

A girl steps away from the maddening crowd on a busy street.

This was a bit of an experiment for me. I blurred the background by making a duplicate layer, blurring, adding a layer mask and then revealing the girl through the layer mask. It’s not perfect, and in fact, the closer I look the more imperfections I see. Unfortunately I never saved a .xcf file preserving the layers so this is the final product.

I like it. The blur successfully separates the girl from the backgrond and even the zone of sharpness takes in some of the ground around her which exaggerates the effect!

Taken on St. Patrick Street, Cork last October.

Last minute shopping

Today many major cities and towns around the world are going to be thronged with shoppers doing last minute shopping before Christmas Day. Traffic is going to crawl and frustrate and the crowds will be suffocating.

I’m glad I’m staying at home. We may head out to the Lough later for a walk. So stressful!

I like this: Europe – The Parisian Chapter

The Girls of Cork City

Two girls standing at the edge of a crowd on Patrick’s Street, Cork.

A quick search for irish cork girls hoops earrings led me to the page on scanger. Judging by the definition of both male and female clothing, there are plenty of them about!

Stereotypical Appearance

* Very short haircuts (sometimes with a short fringe or quiff at the front) in males. The wearing of a high pony-tail in the girls (usually at the crown of the head), negatively referred to as the “knacker knot”, “scrunchie” or “Annie”. The wearing of ‘quiffs’ on women is also becoming quite popular.
* Peroxide blonde highlights, usually on the top of the head and quiff of males, and as streaks in females have been popular in the Summers of recent years but are losing out to shaved-in patterns among short haired males.
* The wearing of thin moustaches, (“knacker-taches”), such as that made famous by Irish Boxer Barry McGuigan.
* The wearing of branded baseball caps (such as the Burberry check pattern). The cap is often worn at a sharp 70-90 degree angle. The Nike brand has a high take-up rate traditonally among this market segment. In recent years Burberry has also emerged as a strong market player.
* Prominent jewellery: sovereign rings (on men); large earrings, especially hoop earrings, (on women); and thick chains (worn around the neck or wrist) is another characteristic of the scanger; another overt display of affluance, these are often hallmarked silver or gold, or at least gold in appearance—another similarity with the british chav.

Females can be identified by the so-called “Knacker Facelift”; a ponytail with hair pulled back so far that it stretches the facial skin, hiding the wrinkled skin developed from years of eating chips and smoking since childhood.