Saturday 29 January 2011

Original Edit

Helicopter coming into land: Army exercise near Stone, Staffordshire, UK

Work on the new portfolio galleries continues at pace. With the amount of work that i have to add, it looks like it'll be quite a few weeks before the portfolio is fully up to strength. Digitally shot work isn't too much of a hassle but images captured on film requires a lot of effort.  Lots of scanning is involved and that takes time. Re-visiting projects does have it's advantages though. Several of the galleries will be extended to include new photographs taken during those shoots. An extended director's cut version, if you will.

One such gallery is the Territorial Army. Originally  this gallery had around twenty five images, but this will increase to around forty in the new portfolio. So where are these new extra images coming from? Quite simply, they are just shots that were edited out due to time, darkroom printing and photo-story narrative issues. I really have been surprised how many great photographs did not make the original final edit. Obviously some other considerations came into play at the time.

Friday 14 January 2011

Just Browsing

2011 has started with a flurry of activity altering websites. If you visited the main website recently, you will have noticed that it has a brand new design. The work is, by no means, finished. There are plenty of bugs, design elements and additional pages to sort out, but I'm slowly getting there. Simplicity has been the keyword. Several pages have been combined, so for example, the podcast page now has the main podcast and the audioBoos together. The digital image services (Image repair, manipulation and copying) will also be placed on just one page from now under the (working) title of  Photoshop services.

One problem I have run into has been to do with web browsers. Wow, what a choice we have these days. For many years, I exclusively used Microsoft's Internet Explorer as really there were no other options available. Now I'm using Firefox and Google Chrome more and more. I have five browsers on my laptop - Safari, Chrome, Firefox, Opera and Internet Explorer. My reasons for having five browsers on my computer are many, but it comes down to choice and checking website compatibility. I also like the speed and intuitive design of browsers like Google Chrome.

While developing my website's new portfolio section, I've come across the fact that all of the main browsers work with my new Wordpress plugin flash gallery EXCEPT Internet Explorer. For some reason the gallery images and links do not work in Microsoft's popular browser. My only conclusion is that Microsoft are lagging behind in developing their browser and keeping it up-to-date.This is a potential problem, although not one big enough for me to scrap the development of the gallery. I need the gallery to be as accessible as possible for as many people as possible, to view on as many ranges of systems and set-ups as possible - not easy to accomplish at all. In my portfolio's case, I believe that Internet Explorer needs to catch up with its rival browsers. It seems odd that the others work perfectly well, but Microsoft's does not.

If you haven't tried another Internet browser other that Microsoft's, then I'd have a look at some of the others available. You might be pleasantly surprised.

Tuesday 4 January 2011

Two Shots

The first post of 2011... and I'm starting with a short film that has managed to wind me up no end.

I'll let you make your own mind up about the photographer character in this short film, but i will just add that i don't think the film is clear cut enough in it's depiction of the moral issues of reporting a war. Quite honestly, I don't like the female photojournalist character one little bit. She seems to possess all the qualities that i think a photojournalist shouldn't have! The film did remind me though of a story I once read.

The former BBC reporter Martin Bell writes in his 1995 autobiography 'In Harm's Way' about the moral implications of covering stories in a war zone. Bell had covered stories in war zones from Vietnam to Bosnia and his book dealt extensively with his experiences of reporting from war torn Bosnia and Croatia during the 1990's. He writes about the following anecdote that could be apocryphal but probably isn't.

The story concerns a journalist who want to write a profile about a sniper in Sarajevo during the Bosnian war of the 1990's. The sniper is looking down on a street. 'What do you see'? asks the journalist. 'I see two people walking in the street' replies the sniper, 'Which of them do you want me to shoot'? It's at this point that the journalist realizes he is in the wrong place at the wrong time, engaged on a story that is fatally flawed and one he should have never considered.

The journalist urges the sniper not to shoot and turns to leave. At that same moment two shots ring out. 'That was a pity' says the sniper 'You could have saved one of their lives'.