Midleton Princess

Adding a bit of humour ot the Midleton Food and Drink Festival, this princess was just on a break but kindly posed for the camera after I asked.

Sorry about the blown out detail on her hand – the sun was behind her so I had to fill in the shadows with flash. Unfortunately her hand was sunlit and the camera just couldn’t take it.

How is Cork changing?

Bryan Person asked me How is Cork changing? Where does your obvious passion for street photography come from?

How is Cork changing?

  • The streets of the city centre are being rebuilt and modernised. The sewage system was overhauled and the River Lee is clean(er) again.
  • There are more cars on the road now than you can “shake a stick at”. Everyone seems to have 2 cars and the best of everything. There’s a huge line of credit coming from the banks.
  • Time was when you could walk around Cork on Sunday afternoons and not see many people, this was less than 10 years. Now Sunday is as busy as any day. There hasn’t been this many people living in Ireland since the famine in the 1840’s. People are actually emigrating to Ireland, not out of Ireland.
  • People are more positive about the future, there are more opportunities out there, but people are just as stressed and unhappy as they’ve always been. Perhaps more so as we’ve become wealthier.

Where does your obvious passion for street photography come from?
The simple answer is “other people”. The long answer expands on that. There are such a variety of people in the world, all going about their own business, all doing mundane things that they don’t give a moment’s thought to but if I capture it then that moment is there forever. That moment relaxing with a cigarette, walking down the street, talking on the phone, or even dancing! I see the moment and grab it before it gets away.

I have a hunger for recording events around me.

Sowan’s Organic Bread Mixes

Sowan’s Organic Bread Mixes were a big hit with everyone who sampled their bread, including Jacinta. She bought a packet of the stuff and I’m going to sample the finished product this morning! This is their stall at the Midleton Food & Drink Festival.

Their website is sowanorganic.ie and I discovered this positive post about them from a WordPress.com user, Keith. It always gives me a tingly feeling whenever I come across those because of my involvement with WordPress.com.

The September issue of the Digital Journalist is just out. This picture just screams at me – the contrast between the normal living room and the huge cloud of one of the collapsing Twin Tower is alarming.

Late in the day, but I like these: Randy for you, a truck with a message, and Back from the dirty, photos by Chris Weeks of Paris Hilton and others at a party.

The Apple Store

An apple stall at the Midleton Food and Drink Festival last weekend. It was a wet morning and when I saw the water glistening on the apples I just had to make this photo.

Technique: Photo was levels adjusted manually because the GIMP thought there was too much green in the image, it gave a blue tinge to the whites in the image. I then burned the scene and did the apples over a little more to really bring out the rain drops. Saturation increase of everything but the blue and cyan channels helps to warm up the image. Finally resize and unsharp mask to sharpen. (Was that useful? I’ll add this more often if it was!)

Man on the street

Since the smoking ban was implemented people can’t smoke in pubs which drives them on to the streets where the pub owner may have some street furniture out for their convenience. No such luck on North Main Street for this man. He’s enjoying his cigarette while sitting on an electricity junction box marked clearly “DANGER Keep Away”.

This city’s a drag

Two women, dragged along by a young girl so they won’t stop at the market on Cornmarket Street, Cork. I can just imagine the conversion:
“But I want to go home noooowwwww.”
“No, hold on, we went to all your shops, I want to look at more boots.”
“Ummm, that stall over there has delicious breads.”
“I’m tired!”

Maybe.

I’m really happy with the way this image turned out because we were right next to them and I wasn’t sure if I would get them all in. In the end I had to crop to get the composition I wanted. I duplicated the layer and darken the top one before removing the non-cloud portions of it. I added a slight lomo effect too which did wonderful things to the sky too!

The Yellow Helmet

A father picks up the yellow helmet dropped by his son in front of the Body Shop on Patrick’s Street, Cork last Saturday. I was sitting on one of the marble blocks that pass as street furniture on our main thoroughfare. I had my camera ready to shoot when I saw them passing and within a heartbeat had snapped off a few shots.

I like this: King Corner – great sky and architecture shot. All in your hands…. – keep on smiling!

Courtmacsherry Dead End

The little town of Courtmacsherry in Co. Cork is a picturesque tourist village with pretty looking multi-coloured houses visible on the way into the town from Timoleague.

This makes the attitude of the people we met there all the more confusing. We parked in the middle of the town, Jacinta wanted to check out a pottery shop, and walked with Oscar down the road. We passed by several people, mostly tourists by their clothes, and unusually, they kept their heads down watching the ground and never said “hello” or even commented on Oscar! We’re used to people stopping us and asking about him so this was disconcerting.

Later on we rested on the wall of the harbour and a few people did greet us thankfully.

The image was processed using two layers. One for the sky and the other for the ground. Sky was burned heavily to bring out the clouds while the ground was dodged and brightened with the Curves tool.

I’ve geotagged this photo on Flickr. Works well enough. It even knew where “courtmacsherry ireland” was!

courtmacsherry map

Denis Murphy, Castle Street

There’s something fascinating for me about old buildings. Perhaps it’s the history they have seen and the memories they hold. Some of the old buildings on Castle Street, Cork are really interesting. I noticed this small building nestled in between it’s larger brethern and when I saw some people walking by I took my shot.

It was processed afterwards with the gimp Wide Angle plugin and I did a little work changing colours but not much else.

I like this: downtown strips, simply because it’s a neat idea I haven’t seen anyone else do yet.