Tag Archives: Ireland

Clare versus Tipp

Down the pairc again. Been a while since there was a match in Cork, but today saw the newly-refurbished stadium packed as Clare and Tipperary battled it out to see who would qualify for the All-Ireland semi-final. The game was no classic. Clare squandered chance after chance and Tipp without ever really hitting the heights managed to get over the line with an impressive 28 points.

Enjoyed the afternoon down there. Here are some shots.

Tipp yahoos not sure where the hell they are

Larry Mackey

A steward with the right idea

In we go

The new Pairc Uí Chaoimh

Stop phoning my camera

Girls

Tipperary

A mother’s nightmare

All to play for

Or maybe not

Tipp win

Home we go

Some bedtime reading

 

 

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

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 , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

2015 – Everything will happen. Believe – achieve!

On January 1, 2015, I posted this to Facebook: Everything will happen. Believe – achieve! When writing that I could never have imagined the magical experience that was about to begin for me. Looking back at 2015 through the lens of the iPhone there are so many highlights and accolades: being part of Apple’s incredible Shot on iPhone 6 global campaign, speaking at the world’s first ever mobile journalism conference – MojoCon in Dublin last March, winning many awards for my iPhone photography, being invited to London to be interviewed by the great Dan Rubin as part of Apple’s Meet the iPhone Photographer, visiting Tokyo, Porto, Amsterdam, Vilnius, Milan and London, giving iPhone photography workshops in galleries in Cork and Dublin. But throughout it all, I knew the thing that would stay with me was the experience of sharing all this with my family and my friends and also the making of new friends on the way. I realised how fortunate I am, not just in receiving these accolades and experiences, but also to see the joy it brings those who love me. Seeing the wonder in my mother’s face as she saw photos of my Shot on iPhone 6 photo on billboards around the world, hearing my little girl scream with glee when she saw me interviewed on TV, and

I like this little activity I have each year when I look back and choose my favourite 12 images I posted to Flickr throughout the year. It is an interesting document to see my photographic journey over the previous 12 months and gives me an idea of where I am heading to.

OK, I am going to be honest, looking at the iPhone shots I posted to Flickr in January, none of them stand out for me. This allows me to choose 2 from another month later in the year.

February was a sad month for me. My good friend Liam passed away. A day has not passed that he has not entered my thoughts. This photograph of the sun shining through a leafless tree is for him.

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F E B R U A R Y

In March, everything changed. My photograph went up on huge billboards all around the world and I absolutely loved it. For about two weeks, I could not sleep. The excitement of it all was too much. I was doing newspaper and radio interviews and my stats on all social media spiked. I was lucky to be able to get to Milan with my wife to see the billboards for ourselves. This photograph tells the story of how exuberantly delighted I was to see my photo on a billboard.

M A R C H

M A R C H

April and I was in Tokyo. It rained non-stop for 3 of the 4 days I was there. Only having 4 days, I intended to make the most of it. This photograph, shot in Shibuya, was taken only a short few hours before my early morning departure flight. It would go on to win 3 competitions in 2015. You can read more about how I got this shot here.

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A P R I L

April was a great month. I also got to go to London for Apple’s Meet the iPhone Photographer. To be honest, this was my personal highlight of the year. Everything about this experience (read my blog post about it here) was wonderful. I got up early on the morning of the event and was blessed with the fine weather. I got out early to shoot and on that morning, I got so many good shots. This one here, that I posted to Flickr in May, is one of my favourites of the year. I stood on the road as I waited for a passerby to enter my frame. The graphic shadowed patterns of Blackfriar’s Bridge were so serendipitously complemented by the black and white runners of the woman who strode past. Click!

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M A Y

I am attracted to light and lines. This shot, posted in June, is from a wonderful photo walk at Mojocon in Dublin in March stopped me in my tracks. I love the simplicity of it.

J U N E

J U N E

July was spent in Ireland. We had a family holiday in Sligo. Mullaghmore is one of Ireland’s most beautiful beaches. I was walking on the sand dunes behind the beach when I saw my little girl running towards her mother and brother. I can still hear their laughter.

J U L Y

J U L Y

For August, I am cheating a little and choosing two photos. The first is one is of my little girl on her 8th birthday and the other is from the trip to London. I could not leave either of these photos out.

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A U G U S T

A U G U S T

A U G U S T (2)

In September, I posted another of my favourite shots of the year. This is one that I ran across traffic to get to in Amsterdam. I saw this guy sitting on a bus stuck in evening traffic. He had this most intense glare. This shot is part of an ongoing series.

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S E P T E M B E R

It seemed to start to rain in October  and has not stopped yet. I was sitting in the car waiting for my wife to get back from the supermarket when I saw this guy leave and battle to hoist his umbrella. I had to snap!

O C T O B E R

O C T O B E R

In JuneI got to travel to Porto – my prize for winning the Mira Mobile Prize. I was met by Manuela and Joao, the organisers of the competition. Their kindness and hospitality will stay with me for a long time. Porto is a wonderful city. It has it all. This photograph, posted to Flickr in November,  was taken just outside Porto’s iconic Majestic Cafe. I got as close as I could get to get this portrait of this wonderful Porto gentleman. You can read my travel article published by Ireland’s state broadcaster – RTE – here.

N O V E M B E R

N O V E M B E R

In December, I upgraded from my beloved iPhone 6 to the new iPhone 6s. Late to the party, but still hoping to get to dance, I have been battling the elements and getting out shooting. This photograph shot last Monday (29.12.15) was taken in a hurry. We stopped at Ladies View in Kerry to look down on the Gap of Dunloe. It was wild. Storm Frank had landed and the wind and the rain were ferocious. My friend Richard stood taking in the vista. I stopped behind, framed the shot and snapped. We spent another a minute or so there before rushing back to the car.

D E C E M B E R

D E C E M B E R

And that is it! Bringing to close what was the most wonderful year ever in my photographic journey. Thanks to all whose inspiration, love and kindness drives me on.

Here’s to 2016! Everything will happen. Believe – achieve!

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Can I take your photo?

“Can I take your photo?”

It’s not something I find easy to ask. Take this situation I found myself in last Tuesday morning while waiting for a bus in Cork’s city centre. It was about 10 a.m. Town was quiet. There were a few people heading to work, some early-morning shoppers, delivery people doing their jobs, and then this striking character sitting on an electric fuse box outside a shoe shop. Wow!

Cork: August 2015

Cork: August 2015

Looking at it now, I am annoyed with myself. How did I miss the reflection? Usually, I am more aware than this. Another great opportunity lost. Anyway, this striking looking man was sitting; killing time. I was struggling. Should I ask him straight to take his portrait or be discreet and get a candid image? Hesitating, I furtively shot a few frames of him. I pretended to be looking in the shop window. I got a little braver and got another one or two of him, but all the while I just wanted to turn and tell the man that I found him fascinating and wanted to create a portrait of him. Street photography is difficult and, for me, even more difficult in my hometown. Put me outside Cork and I am much braver. Ya, I will rarely stop and ask someone for their portrait, but I will get down on my knees in front of them and shoot a frame or two. Nothing bad ever happens. But in Cork… I don’t know.

Cork: August 2015

Cork: August 2015

Cork: August 2015

Cork: August 2015

It was this shot, with him looking at his gold watch which got me. There he was, this man with a beard, grown over years, clothes aged and worn to their last and a gold watch that would not lie to him. I had the shot I wanted, but still I felt a need to connect with him; to thank him maybe, but in the short time I was there with him, we never once made eye contact; I never felt him aware of me. And then my bus came and the moment was gone.

On the bus, I began to kill time with my favourite pastime – processing images. I began to work on the shot above using Darkroom. I am growing more and more fond of that app. I have the alpha version of the yet-to-be-released version and it is great. What I love about it is that you do not need to import anything; when you open it all your photographs are there. The alpha version has some beautiful preset filters. If you have not tried it -rush to the app store. Your photos will love you for it. I ran the shot through it and this is conversion.

Cork: August 2015 (Processed with Darkroom)

Cork: August 2015 (Processed with Darkroom)

I cropped it to square to get rid of the distracting surrounds, did a little work on the contrasts, a little on curves (ya, it has curves) and this is the result. But I was not happy with the left side of the image – thinking it detracted from the main focus of the man. iPhone photography is great. Solutions are easily found. Snapseed has a great tool – brushes. I knew that I could isolate my character with the exposure brush – that and the vignette tool. Working on it on a moving bus is not the best idea, though. I worked a little on it, but finished it when I arrived at my mother’s house. While it is OK, I still want to do more on it. Things are never perfect.

Cork: August 2015 (Processed with Snapseed and Darkroom)

Cork: August 2015 (Processed with Snapseed and Darkroom)

I will revisit this image. The crop needs to be readjusted. There is too much negative space at the bottom of the image and the execution around the edges should be finessed more. A little project to work on. I rarely spend a long time on post processing. Usually my edits are rapid. Two to five minutes max. But this one, I will persevere with. Let me know what you think in the comments below.

I really would have loved to have asked him if I could take his portrait. I would love to find him again. Learn a little about him. Thank him.

 

 

 

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

Sligo

Landscape photography is not my forte, but I do enjoy photographing beautiful locations in Ireland. Through the years, I have gotten to visit most parts of Ireland, but one place I had never been before was Sligo. I had seen the images of Benbulben and could not believe there was such a mountain like this in Ireland. For years, I had wanted to come to see it with my own eyes and to get in some photography here. This year we planned our family holiday to spend a few days in Sligo.

The one thing you cannot depend on in Ireland is the weather. The first day there was a typical Irish summer’s day – cloudy, muggy and misty. We drove from the hotel out to Mullaghmore beach and with the low-lying cloud we actually drove past Benbulben. Later on the way back, the cloud had cleared and the sun came out and we could not believe we had actually driven past this earlier in the day. I stopped to get a few shots.

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Sligo, Ireland (Fuji X100T)

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Benbulben Mountain (Fuji X100T)

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Benbulben Mountain (Fuji X100T)

I realise I these are not the best landscape shots and that the Fuji is not the best camera for this type of photography, but I did enjoy it. Any feedback – constructive criticism – is very welcome. I wish I had more time to photograph this at different times of the day, but with small kids in tow it is not the easiest. Here are a couple taken with the iPhone.

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Benbulben Mountain (iPhone)

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Benbulben Mountain (iPhone)

 

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

September 1 2014

My little girl went back to school today. She is in first class now and with each year that passes (this is her third year in primary school) they seem to add kilos on to her schoolbag. Why are kids’ schoolbags so heavy? She nearly topples over when she puts it on her back.

But you are not here to read about the struggles my little girl has with her schoolbag. Are you? I don’t know. Leave me a comment below to let me know why you are here.

The two photographs I am posting to Flickr today follow on in the style of many others I have posted before. The DSLR one is a heavily processed image to reduce the character to nothing more than a bubble head (bokeh head – honestly, what should I call these) and the swell of his chest. It is a playful, fun image the result of much sliding in Lightroom. This one  did not elicit a positive response when I showed my wife last night and she usually is a good judge of these things, but I like it. Hope you do too.

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A holiday from myself

This iPhone image was taken in Dublin a few weeks back. I saw this guy, not dressed for summer, approaching. Now, I am no Bruce Gilden and the very thought of hoisting a camera and a flash to photograph someone is too confrontational for my liking. I find it easier and less intrusive to have the iPhone at chest height level and get as close as I can to the subject and then release. It allows for a more natural, candid result. I think the flash-in-face style is an intervention by the photographer; an unnecessary one. Of course, there are some excellent results achieved by those who practise this style, but for me, it is not natural. It is too manufactured and confrontational. But in saying that some of the results these guys get can be spectacular. They always make me think that a shot just after the flash and snap would be interesting, as this one would be a less non-instigated reaction.

photo (10)

A man for all seasons

Posted in Daily posts to Flickr, iPhone, photograph posts, Street Photography Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , |

Competitive photography

I was very pleased to learn on Saturday that three of my photos have been chosen for the shortlist of the Irish Times Amateur Photographer of the Year 2013. This is the second time (last year’s photo) I have been shortlisted and naturally I would love to win it, but looking at the quality of the other shortlisted entries it is easy to easy to see that this may prove to be difficult. The shortlist consists of 280 images for the seven categories of Monochrome, Portrait, Travel, Open, Nature, Street and Colour. I have two images in the Travel section and one in the Open one. Entries came from all over the world, with a young girl, Felicia Simion, a young Romanian girl, achieving the highest number, with a total of eight of her images being chosen.

Entering competitions is a nerve-wracking ordeal. First you have to select and deselect your best images for each category. This took me ages. I hemmed and hawed over which ones to choose, ending up choosing the ones which I felt would meet the descriptions of the categories best and also have the most appeal to the judging panel. In hindsight, and with the advantage of looking at the shortlist, I see that perhaps I should have gone with the images I liked best myself. I should have trusted more in my own gut instinct. In saying that, I do like the images they selected a lot, but if I was entering again I would choose some different images in some categories.

But that’s thing, competition is not what photography is about. I love taking photographs. I love looking at the images of friends on Flickr and I love looking at the work of established photographers. But I would find it hard to put photographs together and say which is better and why. Sure, I can say which I prefer, which ones I can connect with. But that is only one person’s opinion,  my opinion, my interpretation. And that may differ tomorrow and may change just by looking at another photograph. I can only begin to imagine what it must be like to shift through all the submitted images that a competition like this gets. I am sure that there were hundreds of other photographs every bit as technically good, as appealing as those shortlisted.

So, why did I enter? Because I want to see how my photography stands next to that of others. I am not a professional, nor even a semi-professional photographer. I have had no training. I still struggle to fully command the mechanics of my camera. I still make lots of mistakes and I love it. It is a great process of learning and I guess entering competitions and being shortlisted is another step in that process.

Anyway, I am very pleased and proud to have been shortlisted. Knowing that it makes my family proud and happy is the best thing though.

Here are the three images. For larger size, click on image.

the unbeckoned

The Unbeckoned

 

This one I was pleased was chosen as it is the style of photography I am most interested in. It was selected in the Open category. You can see more of these type of images here.

Shibuya

Shibuya Scramble Crossing

This is shortlisted in the Travel Category. The famous Shibuya Scramble Crossing in Tokyo.

Into the Hong Kong night

Into the Hong Kong night

This is another shortlisted photograph in the Travel Category. Taken in Victoria Harbour in Hong Kong.

Wish me luck!

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What strange people photographers are

Imagine the scene. You are walking along, minding your own business, chatting away with your friend, when ahead of you on the opposite side of the road you see a guy with a camera in hand, just waiting. Waiting for what?
He seeing you seeing him, raises the camera to his eye and appears to photograph the blank wall opposite him. This same wall you are approaching. Soon you will enter his frame if you don’t stop. You stop.
He stops.
He gestures with his hand to walk on. You walk on. He snaps, snaps, snaps.
You breathe a sigh of relief as you leave his frame and shake your head in bewilderment as to why anyone would want to take a photograph of you walking past such a nondescript wall.
The photographer views his image and he nods. Satisified.

End of the line

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Self Explanatroy

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How these words weigh

There is a conversation in my head. I am not sure it can be heard. I am not sure of its words. I don’t stop to listen; it’s just heard.

How

these words

weigh.

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These words weigh

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Emotional camouflage

Never alone; Never left alone

Never alone; Never left alone

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