Tag Archives: abstract photography

Holi – Festival of Colours

After a week of rain the sun came out, as it should, for Holi – Festival of Colours in the grounds of University College Cork, yesterday morning. I put on my best old clothes and headed down to get in the thick of things and shoot some of the action. It was an absolute blast.

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. March 11, 2017. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. March 11, 2017. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. March 11, 2017. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. March 11, 2017. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. March 11, 2017. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. March 11, 2017. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. March 11, 2017. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. March 11, 2017. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. March 11, 2017. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. March 11, 2017. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Holi – Festival of Colours, UCC. March 11, 2017. (Shot on iPhone 7 plus)

Shower and scrub time

Like these photos? Check out my gallery from India.

Posted in Brendan Ó Sé. Brendan Ó Sé photography, iPhone, iPhone photography, photograph posts, Street Photography Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Colour or Black and White

Sometimes I am stuck. Both look good, but you dilute by posting both. Choose one. Black and white more often than not wins out.

Here are some recent shots that I loved both in colour and black and white, but ultimately only posted one version. All shot in Shibuya, Tokyo on a Nikon D7000.

Which do you prefer?

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Shibuya: April, 2016 (Black and white)

Shibuya: April, 2016 (Black and white)

Shibuya: April, 2016 (Colour)

Shibuya: April, 2016 (Colour)

Shibuya: April, 2016 (Black and white)

Shibuya: April, 2016 (Black and white)

Shibuya: April, 2016 (Colour)

Shibuya: April, 2016 (Colour)

Shibuya: April, 2016 (Black and white)

Shibuya: April, 2016 (Black and white)

Posted in Brendan Ó Sé. Brendan Ó Sé photography, photograph posts, Street Photography Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Portraits from India

Before heading to India, my travel companion (who is a seasoned visitor to India) asked me what I wanted from the trip.

Leh, India. July, 2016

Leh, India. July, 2016

“To satisfy the stereotypical images I have in my head of India”, I replied. “You know the classic Steve McCurry type shots.”

“Who is he?” Not being a photographer, he hadn’t heard of him.

“You know that photograph of the Afghan girl; it was on the cover of National Geographic? That one, you know that? Steve McCurry… shots of India like he gets. Really dramatic, colourful scenes with equally colourful and dramatic characters.

“Oh, ya”, he replied and his left eyebrow raised a little as he responded.

“I want to shoot, shoot and shoot and get all the stereotypical images and then discover India for real.”

You cannot beat exuberance and naivety.

Varansi, India. July 2016

Varanasi, India. July 2016

Off I headed to India with a head full of imagined scenes I was going to shoot. Now of course I didn’t get those Steve McCurry-type shots, but I did try. Who doesn’t? It reminds me of the maxim I apply to life and to art:

Imitate – assimilate – innovate

I have written about this before. It goes like this: We absorb so much of what we experience it is inevitable that we imitate. It puts us on the path of learning and discovery. Then our own interpretation and style gets into the mix as we assimilate, and as we progress we use this as a springboard for our expression as we begin to innovate. But the thing is that it is not linear. At any stage in the process we are imitating, assimilating and (hopefully) innovating.

Varansi, India. July 2016

Varanasi, India. July 2016

In this spirit, I tried to satisfy those stereotypical images of India I had created in my head from seeing Steve McCurry’s shots. Now, of course I am no McCurry, but I did enjoy shooting these portraits.

Varansi, India. July 2016

Varanasi, India. July 2016

Funny though, when I look at these portraits now, it is not the person in the frame that I remember, but rather the immediate environment surrounding them and the sensation that I was missing out on something real, something more exciting than this paused-posed-and-paid-for moment. (Ya, in Varanasi you have to pay ten rupees (about €0.13) for a portrait. These guys are professionals.)  In India, it is impossible not to feel you are missing out on something. It is intense, overwhelming and relentless. It is like stepping back in time, but stepping on to a treadmill that is propelling you forward at speed. Your senses are bombarded and overloaded. It is hard to put into words, but unavoidable to try to capture in images. For me, the portraits were nice, but ultimately boring. What was happening around these people while I tried to get their portrait was much more interesting, and much more challenging.

Varansi, India. July 2016

Varanasi, India. July 2016

Varansi, India. July 2016

Varanasi, India. July 2016

India!

 

 

Posted in Brendan Ó Sé. Brendan Ó Sé photography, photograph posts, Street Photography Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Workflow

How to work out a workflow for thousands images?

Yes, that is right, I have thousands and thousands of images all shot over the past 5 months in Singapore, Bangkok, Jakarta, Toyko, Cork, Dublin, Vienna, Bratislava, Hong Kong, Delhi, Leh, Varanasi, Mumbai, Seoul, Daegu, Geochang, Shanghai and Jeju island.

Thousands of images shot on four different cameras: mainly iPhone, then Fuji X100t, Nikon D7000, and then some on a Sony Xperia Z5.

Where to begin?

Tokyo

I have series in mind, sure. Have begun on some of them already. But the main problem I have is storage. I back everything up numerous times: Google Photos, Flickr, MacBook, external harddrives. But the main devices I use are my iMac and iPhone for storage and, more importantly, editing. And I am constantly getting notifications of Storage Almost Full.

What to do? It took the best part of three days to get all the images (and videos) off the devices and on to the iMac. Before doing this, I had to delete over 100 gigs of photos just to free up space. And I am still nearing capacity on a 1.2tb on the iMac.

The way I like to organise things is like this: I import all photos onto iPhoto. I like the way it creates events and I can give them titles. It is easy to find images from certain locations then.

Then I go through the selection process of choosing (non iPhone – all of those are done on the iPhone) images to edit. The ones I like, I drag over to Lightroom and do the editing there. From that there is another selection process for images to post to my various social media platforms.

This is the way I have worked for years, and there probably are better ways to organise it all, but people do what they are used to doing.

One of my favourite quotes is this:

“Reduce Everything You Want to Do to an Action You Can Do Right Now.” Jason Randal

And for me it is this blog post. This articulation of what I am feeling. It clears a little space – just like deleting gigs on the computer – and allows me to take the next little step.

My father gave me the best advice in life: Don’t be afraid to ask for advice. Very often I feel I should have the answers myself; that I should be able to cope, and that perhaps asking for help or advice is an admission of failing. It is not.

My wife gives me the good advice.

I asked her. I said: I do not know where to start. I have too many images.

She said: What is your favourite place that you have been in the past five moths?

I said: Tokyo.

She said: Start there.

I am starting.

Imitation

Imitation

 

Posted in Brendan Ó Sé. Brendan Ó Sé photography, Daily posts to Flickr, iPhone 6s, iPhone photography, My own favourite photographs, Street Photography Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Which of these photographs are iPhone 6s and which are Nikon D7000?

Imitation series: Tokyo, April 2016. Images shot on iPhone 6s and Nikon D7000. All edited on Snapseed on iPhone.

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Tokyo: Blur will save the world

Posted in iPhone, photograph posts, Street Photography Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , |

M i n e

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Posted in photograph posts Also tagged , , , , , , , |

Bangkok: The slow rhythm of patience

Had a discussion with a friend of mine about photography and how we use it to interpret what we experience. I told him that very often when I arrive in a city it overwhelms me and to begin with everywhere I point my camera seems to be the wrong place. I said it takes time to slip into the rhythm of a city, to feel its pulse beat in time with mine and then it just becomes instinctive.

Bangkok

Bangkok

Bangkok was like that. An assault on the senses. The smell of petrol fumes fused with lemongrass. The neon and fresh fruit stalls. The hum of the constant traffic. The swell and sway of people always on the move. The welcoming smile and the 100-mile gaze.

Bangkok

Lady boys’ boutique – getting ready for the night ahead

At every turn there was something which got my attention; something which I had to capture in a frame.

Lady boys' boutique - getting ready for the night ahead

Lady boys’ boutique – getting ready for the night ahead

I had not visited the red light district on my last visit to Bangkok, but this time we were brought on a little tour by a Japanese friend.

Bangkok

Bangkok

Impossible to compute it all. The luxury of photography allows time to reflect.

Bangkok

Bangkok

Let the camera see.

Bangkok

Bangkok

Bangkok

Bangkok

The slow rhythm of patience

Bangkok

Bangkok

 

Posted in iPhone, photograph posts, Street Photography Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Vilnius

I had the good fortune to be invited to Lithuania’s capital of Vilnius last weekend to photograph a gig of a friend of mine. It was a wonderful experience to be part of this event and will be putting together the visual story of the concert in the near future.

While there I had the chance to get out and shoot around the old town of Vilnius, which you can imagine is incredibly charming. I lived in Latvia for about two years and had been to Vilnius on a number of occasions but had not been back there for well over a decade. I felt it had not changed that much; its charm and character were still strongly evident. When out, I had three cameras with me: the Nikon D7000, the Fuji X100t and the iPhone. I felt such a draw to the Nikon and to document Vilnius a little out of focus. In recent times, I have not blurred things up that much, and I feel I have distanced myself from what I truly enjoy in photography.

On this afternoon, I got about a hundred images in the old town of Vilnius – the majority of them defocussed. Here is a short selection of those.

Vilnius

Vilnius

Vilnius 2

Vilnius

Vilnius

Vilnius

Vilnius

Vilnius

Vilnius

Vilnius

Vilnius

Vilnius

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blur is a still-undressing girl

Been neglecting the blur of late – got to correct that. Starting a series of blurred photographs from Tokyo. 

 

Non-neglected

Non-neglected

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tOkyO

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Got love it

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I love

Tokyo Romantics

Tokyo Romantics

No hiding it

No hiding it

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Shot on iPhone 6 Wins

162 photographs. 73 cities. 24 countries. 10,000 plus installations. 6.5 billion impressions. 

The numbers are staggering.

I learned on Wednesday evening that Apple’s #ShotoniPhone6 campaign won first prize at the Cannes Lions (Oscars for advertising) for their advertising company – Media Arts Lab . When presenting the award the Creative Director of DDB Worldwide, John Bailey, described the campaign as a game changer. It appears that once again Apple are ahead of the field and their idea to showcase the iPhone photographs of their users will probably result in competitors trying to emulate this.

Here is the promotional video Apple submitted:

Apple selected a total of 162 photographs from the millions of images shot on iPhone 6, scouring through the online photo sharing platforms of Flickr, Instagram and Facebook. The task in narrowing these down to 162 is mind boggling. The resulting pool of selected images were chosen to showcase the quality of the iPhone’s camera. Well-known photographers like Austin Mann and Paul Octavius were approached to submit images, but most photographers were, like me, unknowns.

In their approach, it was not made clear until the launch how the images would be used. Apple’s plan was to create the world’s largest mobile photography exhibition ever staged. (Has there actually been a larger photography exhibition?) On billboards and posters in all major world cities shot on iPhone 6 images began to appear; huge, dramatic photographs dominating urban landscapes. These locations were hand-picked for each image. The campaign, still in progress, is a rolling one. Shots have rotated from location to location in the four months it has been running. The estimation is that the images have been seen 6.5 billion times. Let that figure sink in. 6.5 billion times. What is the earth’s population?

The scale of this is enormous. To be involved in this campaign has been the experience of a lifetime for me. To think a photograph I created in a park in Copenhagen on a cold and dull day in October 2014 with a then-new iPhone 6 would go from my camera roll to colossal billboards in cities all over the world is mind-blowing. To think that from the 162 images mine would be one of five to win individual awards – a Golden Lion – is just so incredible.

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Golden Lion Winner

All of this is still going on. I am still receiving emails and tweets from people I have never met sending me images of the shot from different locations or in print magazines. It is pretty surreal and I feel I won’t be able to fully process it and appreciate it until it has passed. Take last Tuesday morning. When I woke up and turned on my phone I had this notification from Bangalore, India:

IMG_5956

Bangalore, India (Shot by V.H Belvadi)

Of the photographs people have sent me of the image on billboards, this is, I feel is one of the very best. V.H created a really artistic shot. But the thing is – how absolutely crazy it is to receive a notification like this. Something I created is being seen by people on the other side of the world and they search me out to send it to me. There is something beautiful about it, something that will stay with me for the rest of my life. I do realise how fortunate I am to be part of all this and I am grateful to Thomas Toft who brought me to that park in Copenhagen and to Apple for giving me the opportunity to showcase my work and make me love the iPhone even more.

Kiss the future…

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