Archive for the ‘Corporate’ Category

Spooks and dinosaurs

Saturday, December 10th, 2011

I am behind the times in discovering the joy of the BBC programme Spooks. I’m now viewing it on the iPad at the gym. It certainly works wonders for exercise motivation!
This morning’s episode had a meeting between spooks in the Natural History Museum, beside the dinosaur skeleton.
In this excellent recent photo shoot, the person gives scale to the grandeur of the building.
A great example of corporate imagery making a statement about the premises where they work. It looks like a cathedral don’t you think?.

The Higgs Boson or ‘God particle’

Thursday, December 8th, 2011

It seems that interest in the Higgs boson is growing in the run up to data revelations from the LHC next week.
I recently had the opportunity to meet and photograph Professor Higgs and he had his first encounter with an iPad which he definitely enjoyed.

Can you see what he is drawing? Maybe a boson, or a sombrero potential?

Daguerre

Friday, November 18th, 2011

Google reminds me that today is the 224th anniversary of the birth of Daguerre, inventor of the Daguerrotype a way to ‘print’ images.
He wasn’t the inventor of photography, that was Henry Fox Talbot some years earlier, but Daguerre was the first to patent his process in 1839, limiting its use. At first mercury was used to cure the plates on which the images were recorded so it was dangerously toxic. Previously exposures had to be for many hours so were totally impractical for portraits. Each image was unique.
What a long way we’ve come!

Exam results

Wednesday, August 24th, 2011

A level results week – and even though there are record levels of high grades the fight for places at University is harder than ever. The best news though is that Physics has become so popular – the ‘Cox effect’ they call it, as a result of the popularisation of science on TV. The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) and the so-called ‘God particle’ also get mentioned in the press as reason for the popularity of science and particle physics in particular. Professor Peter Higgs whose name is attached to the God particle (or Higgs Boson) was a delightful subject for portrait photography recently. He had never come across an iPad and thoroughly enjoyed playing with mine. Can you tell what he is drawing, is it a Sombrero potential, a Boson or just a face?

National Portrait Gallery

Wednesday, June 1st, 2011

Yesterday I went to the Ida Kar exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery for the second time.
It is a fascinating collection of images, showing the most intimate moments, and also the striking faces of famous people, mostly writers, artists and sculptors, both posed and clearly at work.
I was intrigued that the subjects eyes are not always in focus and yet she gets her message over well. It shows that the rules ofphotography (which I tend to disregard) are there to be broken. A most encouraging thing to discover!
I shall definitely go again before it closes on June 16th.
Today’s favourite picture is probably the Bridget Riley portrait on the back cover of the accompanying book.

Charterhouse

Friday, May 27th, 2011

Ignoramus that I am, I had no idea that a Charterhouse exclusively signifies a Carthusian Monastery (not a school as I had imagined!)

In Italy we saw the one at Padula which is well preserved and there is a good view from the edge of the town.
Note the usual contrast between a glorious view, spoiled only by electricity supplies and telephone wires, and a rather seedy patch of rubbish, typical of the less visible edge of towns all over the world I suppose

More spam

Monday, January 24th, 2011

So in response to my last post on the subject of spam I got 86 spam messages, most of them offering to sell ‘prescription only’ drugs on line, and an odd jumble of medicines they were.
Baldness, acne, erectile dysfunction, anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, severe pain, insomnia and gastric ulcers all should be a thing of the past if I had taken up these offers.
Lucky me I don’t have any of these problems but I really do worry about people using prescription medicines with the potential for serious side effects without medical supervision and apparently as ‘recreational drugs’.

Don’t people realise that taking such things when not indicated and not under medical supervision can be very risky?
Do they realise that the alleged medicines may be total fakes with nothing active in and possibly poisonous?
Pills sold on the web, and made of paint and rat poison are not unknown.

I don’t so much mind the car insurance spam, or the life insurance spam, but the rest are a real worry.

Spam – a pink unwholesome luncheon meat.

Monday, January 17th, 2011

I am fascinated by spam.
It used to mean pink unwholesome-looking, plastic-tasting luncheon meat. The up to date diet of spam is adverts for mind altering drugs, so-called ‘lifestyle drugs’ like Viagra, Cialis, and weight loss products, various highly regulated pain killers and tranquillisers, baldness treatments and car insurance. What a strange mixture that is.
Then there’s ‘add traffic to your website’, health insurance and tanning.

Of course there are also phishing expeditions with emergency messages from banks, where I don’t have accounts threatening to have these blocked if I don’t provide all the details via an on line form – I don’t think so!

Then there is the HMRC fake email indicating that after 7 years of checking I am owed £159.00 in overpaid VAT for which I have to log into their special webiste.

I’m not even counting the wonderfully entertaining scams where you’ve won millions, been left it in some unknown relative’s accounts or simply get it by paying a few hunderd pounds to someone whose style of writing gives away the scam from the email title alone – “Beloved” is always a giveaway word isn’t it!

What a strange society we have become. I wonder what the new trend for 2011 will be.

I really look forward to checking my email responses to this, and the new crop of fascinating glimpses into our odd and changing world.

Flourish Workshop

Monday, December 20th, 2010

I recently attended a wonderful workshop by Flourish Studios in Guildford.
It was run by Fiona Humberstone who I always find inspiring, and Elizabeth Cairns from Amovita, who added a completely new dimension for me.
We’d had some homework to complete. One task included making a ‘mood board’ which characterised everything we felt was important about our business.
This was a new and revealing experience for me, and one I enjoyed and gained from not just while doing it, but more on reviewing it since. If you ‘ve never done this get in touch with Fiona and work with her on how to do it. It’s really fun as well as illuminating about how you feel about your business.
The main purpose of the workshop was to prepare our marketing plans for 2011, and I never imagined it could be so enjoyable. My past plans have been quite serious, mainly financially characterised and enjoyable in a way but this was something totally new. The lightbulb moment which goes on being useful is to get clear your values as they apply to your business and ensure that your marketing is completely authentically in tune with these. It’s an incredible inspiration and a feeling I can only describe as being a huge relief and a validation of my intuitive approach.
Thank you Fiona and Elizabeth for putting all my thinking together so effectively. It was a Wow event!

Isn’t travel fun!

Tuesday, November 23rd, 2010

I’ve been busy photographing a new baby and doing family shoots.
I also travelled internally in the US on a recent visit.
The weather was not so good for travel by air. Philadelphia airport was suffering the tail end of a big storm, and was closed for a while.
My experience of US Air was therefore sitting on the tarmac at the departure airport waiting for Philly to accept incoming flights, while hoping I’d still make my internal connection.
Isn’t it stressful!
The transit bus from one terminal to the other was titled “US Air Express”. As it crept towards us at 1 mph, across the wind-swept tarmac while we waited, twitching with anxiety, at the transit gate it seemed to me that a tortoise could have moved faster and been better labelled Express!
Anyway the leaves were beautiful and the sitters worth photographing.