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Welcome

Welcome to my photoblog, which I hope you’ll enjoy. Concentrating on black and white photography, the blog aims to entertain and inspire. Like many photographers, I’ve been through barren spells when nothing has seemed to work – which is why I share tips and ideas about keeping your photography fresh and creative.

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Helen Levitt : Queen of street photography

‘When you see an unbelievable confluence of chance in a photograph, remember that the photographer was there, booted and spurred.’ Walker Evans (1969) When Walker Evans made this comment, he was thinking of Helen Levitt. He had agreed to write a brief introduction to the wonderful photobook Helen Levitt. And he described

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Man with a tin bath

My friend Ann lives in Woodlands, on the outskirts of Lusaka. From the middle of town, it’s a good hour’s walk along Independence Avenue. Laid out by the colonial government, with two lanes for traffic each way, the road was originally called Ridgeway. Its best feature is the wide central reservation. Mature

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Curiosity killed the cat

‘The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.’  Ellen Parr Curiosity gets a bad press – people often confuse it with being nosy. So if someone tells you that curiosity killed the cat, they probably mean you should mind your own business. As a photographer, you’re then left

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On Westminster Bridge

When I worked in London, I’d often take a detour across Westminster Bridge on my way home. Except in winter, there would still be enough daylight to take photos. I came across this couple one April evening. I expect they’d come from north London, to relax and take in the sights. As

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Hippo etiquette

‘Never go to bed mad. Stay up and fight.’ Phyllis Diller

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Susan Hayek-Kent : going with the flow

“I like ‘organic’, which isn’t always pristine.” I stumbled on Susan’s work through Flickr, the photo sharing website. We both love dogs and black & white photography, which seemed a good beginning. Then as I explored Susan’s images, I was drawn into her creative world. Sharing home with husband Leon, six dogs

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King of the jungle?

Walt Disney’s ‘Jungle Book’ has a lot to answer for. Having watched the film as a child, I was convinced that a jungle was thick tropical forest where the animals danced to swinging jazz. The truth isn’t as entertaining. Apparently ‘jungle’ comes from the Hindi word ‘jangala’, meaning open, savannah-like terrain, uninhabited

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Blog post No.100 : feedback welcome

‘We always hold hands. If I let go, she shops.’ Henny Youngman (1906-98). Having reached a hundred blog posts in just over two years, it’s time to take stock. So I’m asking for your feedback. What do you like about the blog? And which items do you pass over, because you’re not

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Photography : black and white or colour?

For many years a friend teased me. She would praise one of my black and white photos, then suggest that colour might have worked better. Smiling, I’d explain that I preferred black and white, before changing the subject. But when I moved to Zambia, the choice didn’t feel so clear-cut. Suddenly, faced

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The Art of Happiness

‘Happiness makes up in height for what it lacks in length.’ Robert Frost (1874-1963)