Sunday, 28 August 2016

I Normally Don't Share These But Please Sign This...

The other day the world of action figure collecting lost a legend with the passing of Glenn Webb. Glenn was a collector of Marvel Legends and WWE action figures, an amazing customiser, a YouTube reviewer who's opinions were held in extremely high regards, and a bloody great bloke.

I normally don't share things like this but he was genuinely lovely. He was loved and respected by many, and did more than most for the world of action figure collecting, a world I am happy to be a part of. I sadly had very few interactions with him but in the few interactions we had he was a true gent.

The link at the bottom of this post is to a petition asking Hasbro/Marvel to commemorate Glenn, his love for their products, and his contribution to the continued success of their toy lines...his opinion was quite possibly the most respected within the field, I know for sure he was the bloke who's opinion I trusted without question!

Even if you don't collect figures, or see the point in it, please head over and give it a sign anyway.

https://www.change.org/p/hasbro-remember-glenn-webb-with-a-marvel-legend?recruiter=253496616&utm_source=petitions_show_components_action_panel_wrapper&utm_medium=copylink


Ian
http://facebook.com/guffoggthegeek
http://twitter.com/guffoggthegeek

Friday, 26 August 2016

Foto Inspiration Friday - Henri Cartier-Bresson Quote

Welcome to 'Foto Inspiration Friday', the series in which I not only use a rarely used alternate spelling of photo for the sake of alliteration, but I share with you anything and everything I find inspirational, be it a person, an image, a song, a quote, a place, a pizza...ok, maybe not a pizza but you get the point. This week I'm sharing with you a quote by Henri Cartier-Bresson.


I suffer badly with GAS...ok, I've just realised how bad that sounds! I suffer from Gear Acquisition Syndrome, GAS for short. On a nearly daily basis...on a daily basis I see gear I must have...I see gear I need...I see gear I want but don't really need. I have a list as long as, well me of stuff I must have. It's full of cameras, lenses, gadgets, accessories. I have various wish lists on Amazon, Digital Rev, and any and all photography gear sites. Hell I even have one on Argos and their photography selection is usually poor. Before I carry on, if anyone well off wants to see my list, I'll send you a link...he says in what is a massive case of wishful thinking.

This quote by Henri Cartier-Bresson is something I try to remember when I'm eyeing up that umpteen grand Nikon, and so far it's helped...or that could be the lack of money. Anyway, I think it's a good quote for anyone like me who suffers with GAS. Too often we get sucked into the marketing hype of 'if you buy this camera your images will be world class', and 'this accessory will improve your photography tenfold'. We could all do with remembering the camera gear is merely the tool used to capture our vision, it's not what makes it...it's the rock the otter uses to open it's clam if you will.

With that, I'll leave you with the quote...the quote I'm currently muttering to myself whilst I'm eyeing up the Nikon body that's currently at the top of my wish list.


“It is an illusion that photos are made with the camera… they are made with the eye, heart and head.”


Ian
http://facebook.com/guffoggthegeek
http://twitter.com/guffoggthegeek

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Where When How Wednesday - Darryl J Dennis

Welcome to 'Where When How Wednesday'. In these weekly posts I'll be interviewing creatives about their journey into the creative world, their works, and what makes them tick. This week I'm interviewing Darryl J Dennis, a talented photographer based in Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire.

Model: Sinopa Rin.  Make Up: Katie S MUA.


Hi Darryl, thank you for taking the time to answer some questions. We should probably start at the beginning, when and how did you come about getting into the world of photography?

"I’m relatively new to the world of photography. I’ve played guitar in bands since my mid-teens so music has been my main creative outlet for most of my. Fun fact: one of the bands I played in managed to get a 9/10 review by Metal Hammer magazine for a demo EP... that’s really my only claim to fame.

My girlfriend can take the blame for me inflicting my attempts at photography upon everyone. We were attending 2012’s London Film and Comic Con in cosplay, well, my girlfriend was in cosplay. No one had a clue who or what I was supposed to be. The phrase I heard the most throughout the day was ‘So who are you?’ For the record, I was supposed to be Voldermort… a poor, poor attempt at Voldermort.

No surprise that my girlfriend’s costume (Babydoll from the film Sucker Punch) went down a bit better than mine. So much so that she was approached by a Pinup company that had a table there and were looking for new models to work with.

She stated modelling for them, but wanted to build up her confidence between shoots, so I thought it would help if I got myself a cheap camera in order to give her someone to practice with. Looking back now it’s pretty amusing (and somewhat cringe-worthy) to think how naive I was. Believing that I could help a brand new model with things like posing and angles before I even knew how to use my camera… facepalm!"

Taken At: Saracen House Studios.


Photography, especially online, tends to fall into specific genres and/or gets described as being a specific style. The trouble with this is it's quite subjective, the style someone views an image to be can often differ to the style the person creating it views it as. How would you describe the work you are putting out there?

"Hmm, that’s a tough one. It’s a little bit scattershot if I’m honest, as I like to bounce from genre to genre. That’s not to say there isn’t a style to some of the stuff I shoot. My erotica work tends to be on the darker side of things. Darker in the lighting and not so much the content, but even that is subjective.

I’d imagine that those readers that are aware of my work probably know me more by my portraiture work. How I’d describe that portraiture work is a tougher question. I’ll let the reader decide."

Model: Anna Rose.  Make Up: Anna Baldwin MUA.  Taken At: Big Shot Studio.  Designer: Florissima.


Photography can have it's share of problems. I personally have a particular problem with self confidence. This confidence issue can and has caused me issues with my photography. Do you find any aspects of photography particularly challenging?

"I know what you mean about self-confidence. Shooting can be like an emotional roller coaster. I’ll finish a shoot and I'll be on a high… and then the doubts start to creep in. Did I get everything I was after? Could the lighting have been better? Once I’ve had a chance to look at the images and get a few edits done and posted I’ll start to feel positive again, but it’s not long until the doubts about the choice of image, style of editing pop up again. This is especially true when trying out something new.

The other challenge for me is making sure I’m always learning and that I push myself out of my comfort zone. I found myself needing to take a couple of extended breaks last year after my photography started becoming a production line of the same lighting, same poses, same processing. It was great for creating consistency in my work, but as someone doing this as a creative outlet, it left me feeling bored and uninspired. I still find myself falling into patterns of shooting from time to time, but I’m a bit quicker to change things up."


In my series 'Foto Inspiration Friday' I share the people, images, places etc that I find give me inspiration. Who, or what, or where do you draw inspiration from?

"The short answer: anywhere and everywhere.

When I was first starting out I found Matt Granger and his tutorials a great inspiration. I had no clue what I was doing, so it was nice to have things to aim for and try out. Matt made things seem accessible.

Pinterest is something I use quite a bit these days. You can often find something on there that will jump out at you and get you thinking. In terms of photographers, I’m a fan of the likes of Christa Meola, Joey L and Glyn Dewis… a bit of an eclectic mix there. I'm also going to throw in Andrew Griffiths, the man behind Saracen House Studio. His advice and knowledge has been invaluable to my development. 

Films also provide a ton of inspiration. Room in Rome, while not a particularly great film, has some utterly beautiful cinematography. The mood of that film is something I aspire too, but yet to reach. Honourable mentions to David Fincher with cinematographer Darius Khondji) and Ridley Scott (with cinematographer John Mathieson). Those guys sure know how to construct a compelling image."



Sometimes images hold a special significance to us. It can be the first image we ever made, it can be an image drawing attention to a cause close to our hearts, it can simply be an image of someone we love. Do you have an image or images that hold a special significance to you?

"I’m quite proud of the images that made it onto 1x.com while I was using it, as I know that site has extremely high standards - something I fall woefully short of most of the time. But the image that I’m most proud of as never received much attention on the platforms it’s been posted on.

It’s from early 2014 and my first attempt at shooting erotica. At this point I’d been shooting for roughly a year, and what I’d been shooting didn’t really have any kind of narrative. They were just pictures of people. This shot with Artemis Fauna was the first time I’d ever produced something that was actually trying to a story. Whether it does convey anything is, as always, subjective.

Wow… how pretentious does that sound?"

Model: Artemis Fauna.


Photoshoots can sometimes leave you open to scary or funny situations. What's the scariest or funniest situation you've found yourself in because of photography?

"The scariest thing to happen on a shoot would have to be working with Eddie Cheng. You can never be too sure what he’s going to throw at you.

One particular moment that sticks out in my mind was during a ‘Creative Thinking’ location workshop he was hosting in London. I was due to take part in the evening session, but due to a little mix-up, I found myself pulled into the madness halfway through the afternoon session. As soon as I arrived I was told that I’d have to walk out into the middle of the Oxford Circus with Stephanie Dubois, wait for the road to clear of people, take a shot with the few second left on the red light and then get out of there before we held up traffic.

The pretty much sums up doing anything with Eddie… terrifying, but extremely rewarding."


We've talked about your start in photography, we talked about your current work, let's quickly chat about the future. What have you got coming up this year, more of the same? any special projects? And in regards to a more long term plan, where are you hoping your creative journey will take you in the years to come?

"I’ve been working on an anonymous erotica project for a good part of the year. I’ll be looking to wrap that up by the end of the summer. The idea here was to get away from all the portraiture I’d been doing and branch out into other genres. What I’m hoping is the content I’ve shot is interesting enough to get involved in an exhibition. I’m also going to try to put together a book from it all, too.

After that, I’ve got two different projects in mind. The first involves a lot of conceptual and composite imagery. The second will require me learning a whole new skillset as it involves videography. Watch this space."

Taken At: Saracen House Studios.


We can't really talk photography without discussing gear, so...what is your 'go to' equipment that you find yourself gravitating towards the most on shoots?

"My main body is the Canon 5D Mk III. I jump between the 24-105mm L and the 135mm L for my portraiture. The 135mm is also my preferred lens for natural light location work.

For my boudoir and erotica work you’ll usually find my Sigma 50mm 1.4 on the front of the camera. I’d love to add a focal length either side of that (35mm and 85mm) at some point, but not for a while yet... unless I come into a lot of money.

I’ve also got a Sony A65 with a couple of lenses that gets some use from time to time, usually when I’m going to be shooting something with my Lensbaby  The live view function with the flipdown LCD screen is really helpful when trying to shoot odd angles.

I spared no expense when it came to the lighting for my home studio. It’s a mix of cheap Godox 300w and no-brand Chinese 300w strobes. If you hear on the news about an explosion in Bedfordshire, chances are my lights just failed."

Model: Vicky Burns.  Make Up: Katie S MUA.


Now for the shameless self promotion part of the interview...where can people find you and your work?

"Those readers that have suffered through my waffle above and still want to see my work (you poor people) you can find me here:

My website: www.darryljdennis.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/DarrylJDennisPhotography
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Darryl_J_Dennis
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/darryl_j_dennis
PurplePort: https://purpleport.com/portfolio/djd"


I'd like to thank Darryl again for taking the time to answer a few questions for me. Be sure to check out all of the links for more of his work, and the links attached to the images for the other creatives involved.


Ian
http://facebook.com/guffoggthegeek
http://twitter.com/guffoggthegeek

Friday, 19 August 2016

Foto Inspiration Friday - Pinterest

Welcome to 'Foto Inspiration Friday', the series in which I not only use a rarely used alternate spelling of photo for the sake of alliteration, but I share with you anything and everything I find inspirational, be it a person, an image, a song, a quote, a place, a pizza...ok, maybe not a pizza but you get the point.

A lot of photography prep work, well my prep work, involves looking at as many images as I can on the Internet, creating lists, thinking up plans of attack, and creating inspiration boards. With that in mind, the focus of today's 'Foto Inspiration Friday' is Pinterest.

Pinterest is, in their words, 'a catalogue of ideas' which sums up how I use it quite well. For those who don't know what it is, of which I assume there is very few of you, Pinterest lets you create 'boards' and fill them with images, links etc for inspiration, just as a collection of stuff you like, or for any reason you'd want to create a collection. I use it to collect images I'd like to shoot something similar to, and to collect reference images for ideas I have for shoots and projects.

There's not really much you can say about Pinterest, making it difficult to write a long blog post about it... It's a great place to collect reference material for projects, and share it with the people you are working on your creative endeavours with.


Ian
http://facebook.com/guffoggthegeek
http://twitter.com/guffoggthegeek

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Where When How Wednesday - Pip The Gentleman

Welcome to 'Where When How Wednesday'. In these weekly posts I'll be interviewing creatives about their journey into the creative world, their works, and what makes them tick.


Have you ever found yourself wandering through town, caught site of someone and thought to yourself 'damn, that guy looks cool'? If you happened to be in Huddersfield or the surrounding area at the time, chances are you saw today's interviewee...FYI, according to EVERYONE who has worked with him, he totally lives up to it! Today I'm interviewing Pip The Gentleman, a fantastic model based in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire.

Photographer: Andy Park


Hi Pip, thank you for taking the time to answer a few questions for me.


According to your Purpleport portfolio you've only been modelling for around a year now, which looking at the quantity and quality of your work doesn't show. Which leads me to my first question...how did you get into the world of modelling?

"I fell into modelling by accident really. At 48 I took voluntary redundancy from my job with Calderdale council managing the homeless services. I went back to university to do a degree in social work. One day while heading to the library two fashion students stopped me in my tracks and persuaded me to model for them as part of their course work, they were putting together a magazine for the older gentleman and likes my style. At first I thought it was a joke but they managed to persuade me with lunch and a new experience. The images I received back were good, I put them to one side and forgot about them. January last year I ended up in hospital for 5 weeks and was very poorly I had a infected gallbladder and liver it took me a while to recover. I made the decision to put my studies on hold until I got better. My tutor asked me what I was going to do until September and suggested doing some more modelling as she had seen the images from my shoot and thought they were good. That night I went home and joined a few Facebook groups asking if any photographers would like to work with me. The response was phenomenal and I worked with some great photographers. I then joined some agencies and things have gone from strength to strength."

Photographer: Flash Bang Wallop


Normally at this point in the interview I'd speak to you about genres and styles, about how they can divide the opinions of people whom view the work. From what I've seen of the reception to your work, this isn't the case. The general consensus with your work is that your style is 'cool'. Is this something that comes naturally to you or have you had to work at it?

"I would say that it has come naturally to me as I am just being myself. If that is cool then that is a compliment."

Photographer: Drew Paul. Taken At: Virtuosity Studios.


Also regarding your style, people can be very quick to judge, often doing so by first appearances. There can also be a weird disconnect where people think something is cool in an image but not in 'real life'. When you're out and about how do you find your style is received by the 'general public'? And how does this reaction compare to that you've received in response to your work?

"I find that when I am out and about I get a similar response from the public. Some like the way I dress some like my tattoos and some like the beard and moustache. While in the United Arab Emirates recently I was approached frequently by people of different cultures Arabs, Indians, Phillapinos to have my photo taken with them."

Photographer: Andy Park


If you were to ask the average person what came to mind if you mentioned modelling, I suspect the majority would say young and female...that's even avoiding readers of The Sun and former FHM readers. Have you found that as a 51 year old male your age and/or gender has held you back or caused you issues with your modelling?

"I would say my age and gender have actually been a positive as over the last 12 months the fashion industry have embraced grey mature models. My tattoos however have lost me a modelling job with Barclays Bank when they found out the amount of tattoos I had they withdrew their interest."


Having followed you on Instagram for some time now I've been watching your gym progress. Recently there seems to have been an increase in the number of posts from models posting about their gym time, and how it's helping/going to help their modelling. Was your decision to change your diet and hit the gym due to modelling? And how's it going?

"I think hitting the gym was a natural progression as I had since starting university joined the cycling club and began to loose weight that way. I wanted to turn my fitness around so followed the advice given by a fitness model Daniel James regarding diet and gym work. I suppose sub consciously it had something to do with the modelling. It has given me confidence."

Photographer: Image-UK


Speaking of your Instagram, if anyone has seen your feed, or any image of you for matter, they'll have seen you have a couple of tattoos...How many do you have? How do you decide what to get? And do you have a favourite?

"I am pretty much covered apart from my neck and face. My tattoos started when I was 25 and has been a long term project. I would say my sleeve on my left arm is my favourite. I have a theme running through my body land sea and the underworld."

Photographer: Image-UK. Other Model: Lily Marion


In my series 'Foto Inspiration Friday' I share the people, images, places etc that I find give me inspiration. Where do you draw your inspiration from?

"I draw my inspiration through cycling in the hills of Yorkshire and while out walking the dogs. I am a big fan of Pinterest and will back up my ideas using that."


Sometimes images hold a special significance to us. It can be the first image we ever made, it can be an image drawing attention to a cause close to our hearts, it can simply be an image of someone we love. Do you have any images that hold a special significance to you?

"I have a photograph done in sepia of my granddad when he was a desert rat during ww2 this is in a frame and has always been with me."


Photoshoots can sometimes leave you open to scary or funny situations. What's the scariest or funniest situation you've found yourself in on a shoot?

"I think my first shoot working with a female model was very scary it didn't go very well as we never connected and it knocked my confidence a wee bit, however my next shoot was with Dee Delahunty and we connected immediately and had a brilliant shoot."

Photographer: Flash Bang Wallop


We've talked about your start, we've talked about your present, let's quickly chat about your future. What have you got coming up this year, more of the same? any special projects? And in regards to a more long term plan, where are you hoping your creative journey will take you in the years to come?

"I have two cat walks coming up in the next few months Sexhibition and the Belfast alternative fashion show. As for the future I will just go with the flow. I enjoy modelling and working with creative people whether there is money exchanged or it is a collaboration."


When I speak to photographers I ask about their gear, it's only fair you get to geek out too...do you have any go to items you can't live without?

"My cycle, my tweed suits and my family."


Now for the shameless self promotion part of the interview...where can people find you and your work?

"Purpleport - http://purpleport.com/portfolio/pipthegentleman
Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/Pipsphatkins
Instagram - pip_s_atkins_the_gentleman"


I'd like to thank Pip again for taking the time to answer a few questions for me. Be sure to check out all of the links for more of his work, and the links attached to the images for the other creatives involved.


Ian
http://facebook.com/guffoggthegeek
http://twitter.com/guffoggthegeek

Monday, 15 August 2016

Book Review - 'Little People In The City' by Slinkachu

I warn you now, if you're expecting a Times-esque book review, you'll probably be disappointed. It's more likely to be a Poundland leaflet-esque book review you are about to read...which leads me seamlessly, and not in any way forced into the review...

I have to be honest, before I happened upon this book in Poundland (see, seamless transition!) I had no previous knowledge of Slinkachu's work. Actually that's not strictly true, I had seen this image (https://instagram.com/p/BEPFIc3KUao) floating around the internet, I was impressed by it but was blissfully unaware of who had created it.

'Little People In The City' is a collection of images made as part of Slinkachu's 'The Little People Project'. The project consisted of Slinkachu customising model train characters, creating scenes depicting various aspects of life, photographing them, and leaving them to be discovered...it was part street art installation, part photography project.

Despite not being a fan of 'art installations', finding most of them ridiculous and not being able to see the 'commentary' they supposedly portray, I was pleasantly surprised to not find this an issue with 'Little People In The City'. I think my understanding comes from the fact 'The Little People Project' is part photography project. For whatever reason, probably the fact I look at, and read about photographs and photography projects on a daily basis, I often find it easier understanding the meaning or commentary portrayed in photographs...I don't always 'get it', but it happens a heck of a lot more than it does with 'art installations'.

On Slinkachu's site he states "The scenes I set up, more evident through the photography and the titles I give these scenes, aim to reflect the loneliness and melancholy of living in a big city, almost being lost and overwhelmed. But underneath this, there is always some humour. I want people to be able to empathise with the tiny people in my works." Whilst I'd normally look at this and think to myself 'eh?', his statement is quite true. The aspects of life depicted within the images range from the mundane, to activities many of us probably wouldn't partake in, and whilst most of us wouldn't visit a prostitute (outside of GTA), murder someone (again, outside GTA), or battle a giant bee, you find yourself able to empathise with the scenes you are viewing. A lot of them, including the 'serious' scenes, also often have a humour to them, a humour that I think comes in part from the props and setting used to make them.

Not wanting to fall foul of UK Copyright Law, nor go to law school to learn about it, I shall link to a few of the images I like...

http://little-people.blogspot.co.uk/2007/02/office-politics.html I can relate to this, as I'm sure many people can!
http://little-people.blogspot.co.uk/2006/09/feast.html I like this because it's reminiscent of cheesy horror films I like!
http://little-people.blogspot.co.uk/2006/10/indecent-proposal.html Childish, but it amuses me (nsfw...I think, does it count with miniature figures?).
http://little-people.blogspot.co.uk/2008/07/life-as-we-know-it.html Whilst it's not in the book, I like this one as it's what my mothership would look like...or a Burger King, or KFC, or Papa Johns.

Whilst the concept and subject matter may not be to everyone's taste, I think many people will enjoy the imagery, appreciate the work involved, and find some of the scenes relatable. I also think photographers of various genres will get something from this book. For example, Macro photographers and street photographers, despite been quite different fields, will both get something from it.


Ian
http://facebook.com/guffoggthegeek
http://twitter.com/guffoggthegeek

Friday, 12 August 2016

Foto Inspiration Friday - Alexi Lubomirski

Welcome to 'Foto Inspiration Friday', the series in which I not only use a rarely used alternate spelling of photo for the sake of alliteration, but I share with you anything and everything I find inspirational, be it a person, an image, a song, a quote, a place, a pizza...ok, maybe not a pizza but you get the point.

As you may have noticed if you've read a few of my 'Foto Inspiration Friday' posts, I watch a fair bit of photography content on YouTube. With that in mind, the focus of today's 'Foto Inspiration Friday' is Alexi Lubomirski...'s YouTube channel.

I've only fairly recently stumbled upon Alexi's channel, having seen a recommendation on another YouTube channel...I can't remember who recommended it, it'll come to me eventually. Once I got over my initial jealousy at how damn pretty he is, using a combination of binge eating and complaining, I gave his channel a chance, and I'm glad I did.

Alexi's content is mainly 'behind the scenes' and 'mini tutorials', with a few interviews and other bits thrown in. The 'behind the scenes' videos see him shooting for the likes of Harper's Bazaar, GQ, Vogue, and feature people such as Charlize Theron, Reese Witherspoon and Rosie Huntington-Whitley. They give you a sense of what it's like shooting on large, expensive shoots that create the images you see in magazines and on billboards, something you don't really get on other YouTube channels. The 'mini tutorials' he puts out also differ from the norm. Whilst he does focus on some of the technical aspects, the majority of his tutorials focus on planning a 'story', interacting with all parties involved in the shoot, boosting your creativity, and many other things that get lost in most tutorials.

The quality of Alexi's content makes his channel a great starting point if you're only just getting into the world of YouTube photography videos. If you're an avid YouTube watcher like myself, the differences between his content and most of the other content out there makes him a great addition to your watch list.


Ian
http://facebook.com/guffoggthegeek
http://twitter.com/guffoggthegeek

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Where When How Wednesday - Andy Park

Welcome to 'Where When How Wednesday'. In these weekly posts I'll be interviewing creatives about their journey into the creative world, their works, and what makes them tick. This week I'm interviewing Andy Park, a talented photographer based in Chorley, Lancashire.

Model: Amy Coco Stylist: Falcieri Designs


Hi Andy, thank you for taking the time to answer some questions. We should probably start at the beginning, when and how did you come about getting into the world of photography?

"I graduated from university with a BA Hons Degree in Fine Art in 2001, shortly after I graduated I became a college lecturer within the school of Visual Arts. I taught various subjects including Life Drawing, Painting, Photoshop, Graphic Design and DSLR Photography. I specialized in painting and the rest I was thrown into by my Head of School. So I had very little knowledge of the DSLR. I was self-taught in order to pass on my basic knowledge to newbies. Over the years I developed my skill in Photography and became more familiar with a DSLR but never shot people. Just over 3 years ago I made acquaintances with someone who discovered my love for photography and asked me if I would like to shoot with them. I was nervous to say the least. I found it fun but looking back at the images they were appalling (due to my lack of skillset) not because of the subject matter. From there I was invited to a Facebook community of models and photographers. I took the plunge and started to work with others and could soon see a vast improvement in my work. I was then invited to a studio for the first time and I absolutely loved it. I had no knowledge whatsoever about lighting but I was determined to master it. I met some fantastic people who invited me to their studios and I was invited to PurplePort and from there I started networking and going to group nights at a local studio. I had some tuition from a great photographer or 2 and then decided to find my own place. After acquiring a unit space I spent the next 12 months developing and constructing it into a studio whilst becoming somewhat a hermit and very solitary in my personal development with lighting. My studio is near completion and I have some way yet before I can consistently work well with various light setups."


Photography, especially online, tends to fall into specific genres and/or gets described as being a specific style. The trouble with this is it's quite subjective, the style someone views an image to be can often differ to the style the person creating it views it as. How would you describe the work you are putting out there?

"My work strongly leans to fashion and beauty. I occasionally shoot topless and nude but I have a strong stance on it being artistic and try to keep it away from being of a sexual nature.  I don’t have anything against other genres including glamour as long as it is professionally and tastefully done, however it isn’t something I am interested in shooting myself. I take great inspiration from Peter Coulson. I prefer to capture beauty, innocence, elegance."

Model: Sarah JaneS Taken at: Onyx Studio


Photography can have it's share of problems. I personally have a particular problem with self confidence. This confidence issue can and has caused me issues with my photography. Do you find any aspects of photography particularly challenging?

"2 of my greatest challenges are my lack of satisfaction with my work and the other is trying to keep my photography from interfering with my personal life. I have to try to manage my time well being that I am full-time employed and have a relationship. I would love to pack in work and earn a living from my photography. Sometimes photography can impact on my relationship as I guess many can testify, it takes patience and acceptance from an understanding and loving partner to have no issue with you spending time focusing on the physical aspect of other females."


In my series 'Foto Inspiration Friday' I share the people, images, places etc that I find give me inspiration. Who, or what, or where do you draw inspiration from?

"I mainly draw my inspiration from the networking site I am a member of and also from famous photographers like Peter Coulson. To be honest I am a bit ignorant in the field I am in as I don’t know many famous photographers/models/artists/designers. I think I am at a stalemate at this point of my development as I have discovered that I really do need to network more and take inspiration from others in order to develop further."

Taken At: Onyx Studio


Sometimes images hold a special significance to us. It can be the first image we ever made, it can be an image drawing attention to a cause close to our hearts, it can simply be an image of someone we love. Do you have an image or images that hold a special significance to you?

"If I were to pick one in particular it would be the first image I took of my girlfriend. I met her at a network/group night at a local studio a few years ago when I was a newbie. I never entered this whole photography lark to meet someone but we just got on well and became friends. I will never forget asking the studio owner “WHO IS SHE?!” We started dating many months after and have been together since. As for the rest of my work, I find it special when the people I shoot are pleased with the results and feel they have benefited from working with me. I always try to give people something they can take away as a positive and fulfilling experience, something all photographers should provide."


Photoshoots can sometimes leave you open to scary or funny situations. What's the scariest or funniest situation you've found yourself in because of photography?

"Should I be admitting this? Oh well, I once burnt a models scalp and ruined a makeup artists carpet. When you buy cheap modeling bulbs off Ebay don’t expect quality assurance! The model needed more light for makeup application so I pumped up the modeling bulb to full power and POP went the glass flying everywhere burning into carpet and small fragments landing on the scalp of the model. We resolved the situation and we are all still good friends."

Model: Kerry Ann Taken At: Onyx Studio


We've talked about your start in photography, we talked about your current work, let's quickly chat about the future. What have you got coming up this year, more of the same? any special projects? And in regards to a more long term plan, where are you hoping your creative journey will take you in the years to come?

"How can I keep anyone in suspense if I let the cat out of the bag? I guess I will give you a small piece of the pie. I will be opening my studio for the first time officially in the coming months. From there you will have to stay tuned and follow me."

Model: Amy Louise


We can't really talk photography without discussing gear, so...what is your 'go to' equipment that you find yourself gravitating towards the most on shoots?

"My trusty Nikon and Bowens lighting. I love my beauty dish modifier and Cambo boom arm. I tend to keep with my 35mm for most of my work and I couldn’t live without Photoshop, however I spend a lot less time editing than I used to."

Model: Kamile J


Now for the shameless self promotion part of the interview...where can people find you and your work?

"http://purpleport.com/portfolio/andypark
http://www.facebook.com/andyparkphotographiccollection"


I'd like to thank Andy again for taking the time to answer a few questions for me. Be sure to check out all of the links for more of his work, and the links attached to the images for the other creatives involved.


Ian
http://facebook.com/guffoggthegeek
http://twitter.com/guffoggthegeek

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

My Old Toy Photos...See, I Told You I'm Geeky

Whilst looking through my Flickr feed, sorting it into various albums, I came across my old toy photos. It dawned on me as I did this that I've never, for whatever reason, shared them on my blog. I thought it'd be fun, or embarrassing to rectify this and share some of them now. If memory serves...I say memory...according to Flickr's exif data on my images, the newest from this set was taking in 2014, so they're all fairly old now.

Whilst most of them are probably well known characters, I'll caption each just in case, a) you don't know who it is, and b) you're interested in who it is.

Angel Bob from the Doctor Who episodes The Time Of Angels and Flesh & Stone

Iron-Man - Heroic Age Bleeding Edge if you want to get specific

Spectra Vondergeist from the Monster High cartoons

Jason Voorhees - if memory serves, it's the Freddy Vs Jason version

Master Chief from the Halo games - Halo 2 version if memory serves

Spider-Man - The Amazing Spider-Man 2 version - this is actually a recreation of a poster I saw

Background Hulk (some kiddy version) and a generic Lego standing in for Bruce Banner (the body is actually female, hence the vial placement)

Donatello - not from the proper cartoon but the figure design ain't too bad


Ian.



Friday, 5 August 2016

Foto Inspiration Friday - My Grandfather

Welcome to 'Foto Inspiration Friday', the series in which I not only use a rarely used alternate spelling of photo for the sake of alliteration, but I share with you anything and everything I find inspirational, be it a person, an image, a song, a quote, a place, a pizza...ok, maybe not a pizza but you get the point.

Before I start, this week's 'Foto Inspiration Friday' is, I warn you now, a little deep and a little depressing!

As I mentioned on my 'About' page my grandfather was an avid photographer, and was particularly fond of photographing bridges under construction. I'd love to be able to say this was why he was an inspiration, that I spent hours with him as a child taking pictures, sadly I can't, this was something I found out after he had died.

The reason he's an inspiration is because he died when I was 7. I realise that's a weird sentence but try as I might I can't word it better. What I can do however is try to explain...

If you were to ask me to describe my grandfather to you now, I couldn't. The best I could offer...he had a decent head of hair. That's not because I remember him, that's because I recall it was said years after his death in regards to my biological fathers thinning hair. If I was in possession of photographs of my grandfather I'd know what he looked like, I'd probably be able to remember spending time with him, he wouldn't just feel like some fictional character I have no real connection to. There were photographs of him, there were photographs of me with him, these photographs however were discarded like last week's newspapers by a member of my 'family'. This for lack of a better word 'emptiness' that is caused by not having images of him is why he's inspirational to me. He's the main reason I want to overcome my various anxieties and photograph people. I want to be able to give people images that they're proud of, and that they can give their loved ones to cherish. I want to be able to produce images people look back on in years to come to remember their loved ones and the time they spent together.


Ian
http://facebook.com/guffoggthegeek
http://twitter.com/guffoggthegeek

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Where When How Wednesday - Annie Moya

Welcome to 'Where When How Wednesday'. In these weekly posts I'll be interviewing creatives about their journey into the creative world, their works, and what makes them tick. This week I'm interviewing Annie Moya, a talented model based in Buckinghamshire.

Photogapher: BuddyGB


Hi Annie, thanks for taking the time to answer some questions... When and how did you come about getting into the world of modelling?

"I fell into it back in 2007, I never intended on pursuing it as a career but, somehow that happened along the way. I was told by a photographer who I had a portrait session with I could do some styles of modelling because I had a photogenic face because of my strong jawline and high cheekbones but, I was overweight, yes I was a fatty :) but, I decided to change this and lose weight. With this change, I became more body confident so, much so, I felt that I could model for people maybe as a hobby. I posed for the students at the college I attended, and at university and, I also did a burlesque dance training course. I found that when I uploaded my pictures onto myspace I kept on getting requests from photographers to shoot so, I thought I'd try my luck and see if there was anybody worth working with. I came across a site called Starnow, found a photographer called Guy Graham who did my first professional set of pictures and I found a few other modelling sites. By and by I build up a portfolio and I was being offered paid work so, eventually I ended doing it full time... And, the rest is history."

Photographer: Rob Ellis Taken At: The Pit Studio


Most things, especially online, tend to fall into specific genres and/or gets described as being a specific style. The trouble with this is it's quite subjective, the style someone views an something to be can often differ to the style the person creating it views it as. How would you describe the work you are putting out there?

"I agree, this is a very subjective matter and something I don't take literally. I mean people have tried to categorise me but, I don't take any notice, simply because I don't believe in saying I can't do a certain style because I think that believing you only fit into one style can be a major set back to your modelling work and could make a model miss out on certain opportunities. I guess there will be those who associate my style with Art-nude, pre-raphealite and portraiture even though there are so, many different styles I do including commercial-style shoots and erotica. I'm open minded and I like to try out many different styles as long as it's within my working levels, and, of course, there are some styles I won't do but, that's only a matter of taste.

Pigeon holing and genre can limit models work, it's best to challenge yourself by trying out different styles."

Photographer: Paul Amey


Photography, modelling and their related skills, as with most things, can have their share of problems. I personally have a particular problem with self confidence. This confidence issue can and has caused me issues with my photography. Do you find any aspects of modelling particularly challenging?

"I did and I still do have issues involving self-confidence, I have an anxiety disorder as a result of having autism which makes it difficult for me to socialise in big crowds of people. However, I find that modelling has had a positive effect on this because modelling is something I am so, interested in and passionate about, I find being amongst people who share the same interest as I gives me the opportunity to socialise and has brought me out of my shell so, I can do crowds now, sometimes. :) 

Also, losing weight, and after years of posing nude, I have developed body confidence. I have to say that I have no shame in being naked, it's such a liberation for me. Seen as I did have a lot of body confidence issues when I was growing up, I had physical health problems which made me feel out of control of my own body which made me develop eating disorders. I know they say once you've had an eating disorder, you never grow out of it, well, I defy that, I feel cured and I have my modelling career and posing nude to thank for that."

Photographer: Angelica Hyde


In my series 'Foto Inspiration Friday' I share the people, images, places etc that I find give me inspiration. Who, or what, or where do you draw inspiration from?

"Photo inspiration? That's a tough question. I think I'm just inspired by life and comedy of it all. I guess a lot of inspiration comes from films, I am a big film buff. I suppose mostly films by Peter Jackson, also, David Cronenberg, David lynch, Quentin Tarantino and Takashi Miike they are certainly film directors who I take a lot of inspiration from in terms of style, narrative and composition. I love seeing narrative in pictures. 

I do follow other models careers and take inspiration from them but, not to copy or mimic them. I do think it's important to have your own thing going on. I would say models who have been around since I started or had an influence on me are Natural Happy Girl, Roswell Ivory, Firesecret, Ulorin Vex, Melissa Tongue, Cheryl Elizabeth, Ivory Flame, Cocaine James and Helen Stephens have been the models who I have been inspired by in terms of the fact that they have really showcased their personalities and promoted the modelling lifestyle in the right way. Not to mention the fact that they are all awesome posers. - :) 

Although, I would like to dedicate foto inspiration 'foto inspiration Friday' to (photographer name)  Anjelica Hyde aka (model name) Marianne Di Vine - Her work drives me as a model and a photographer because she is the type of photographer who make me want to work harder as a model and she is great fun to work with: http://purpleport.com/portfolio/anjelicahyde

Also, Katarina Marie foto artist because she is a nutty creative type of person and is aspirational: http://purpleport.com/portfolio/katarinamariefoto

I know that's a long answer but, I guess there isn't much in life that doesn't inspire me. I believe in being lose with my creative work and taking inspiration from everything."

Photographer: Mike Croshaw


Sometimes images hold a special significance to us. It can be the first image we ever made, it can be an image drawing attention to a cause close to our hearts, it can simply be an image of someone we love. Do you have an image or images that hold a special significance to you?

"This image right here...

Photographer: CSAce

...It was taken by the other half - Without going into too many details, we were in a very good place and the shot is a bit erotic and, quite surreal. It is one of my favourites which holds a very special place in my heart."

Photographer: Katarina Marie


Photoshoots can sometimes leave you open to scary or funny situations. What's the scariest or funniest situation you've found yourself in on a shoot?

"My worst - most scary experience to date has been working with a photographer named Shaun Colclough - Back in 2011, I was subjected to an onslaught of abuse from this man which lead to me being severely sexually assaulted . There were four other models who pressed charges against this man and he was convicted of two charges of sexual assault. What I found scary was the aftermath during sentencing we found out that he had a previous conviction for rape of an 85-year-old and had learnt photography as part of his rehabilitation in prison. He had managed to become a high-end professional photographer and was affiliated with agencies such as Premiere and Select models. Although, this experience was horrific it has made me stronger not just in normal day to day life but, in my modelling work. I don't take any crap from anybody :) but, seriously, it's made me appreciate the good people I have met in the industry a lot more than I use to. I did make national news and was featured in number of big newspapers ie the daily mail (or should I say daily fail :) ) but, here is one of the articles: http://www.eastlondonlines.co.uk/2014/08/victims-of-hackney-photographer-sex-attacker-share-ordeals

My funniest moment - I was out on location in a swampy area, I decided to strip off in a bush when all of a sudden I could hear the sound of wings flapping aggressively, I turned around to discover a gigantic swan posturing at me as if it was getting ready to beat me up. I ran out of the bush naked with the swan chasing me. The photographer was gutted that he didn't capture a picture of the moment, I think he was too shocked to lift his camera to take the picture. 

I also, had a pheasant poo on me whilst I was posing nude. It's so, glamourous being a model!"

Photographer: E.Y.M.Cheng


We've talked about your start, we've talked about your current work, let's quickly chat about the future. What have you got coming up this year, more of the same? any special projects? And in regards to a more long term plan, where are you hoping your creative journey will take you in the years to come?

"I have been offered the opportunity to tour Australia so, I'm hoping to do that maybe next year. I do have a lot more travel plans too. I would also like to do continue with doing my personal projects, you see, Although, I am waiting on further diagnostic testing, I have been practically diagnosed with Autism so, a lot of my projects are, and have been based around challenging myself, facing fears and self-acceptance."

Photographer: Gregory Brown


When I speak to photographers I ask about their gear, it's only fair you get to geek out too...do you have any go to items you can't live without?

"I never attend a shoot without my Daisy dukes, I just always have them in my case and funny enough they are very practical. I also, always have a white and black set of underwear. Lots of sheer material and clothing."

Photographer: Laura Jane Make Up: Anna Baldwin


Now for the shameless self promotion part of the interview...where can people find you and your work?

"Ooooh, well search Annie Moya on google for a start you'll find me on loads of sites! :) 

But, if you can't be bothered to do a search then here is a list of sites where I post my work. 
Purpleport, of course, and...
Twitter: http://twitter.com/anniemob1
Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/55862799@N05/ 
Purestorm: AnnieMoya
Model Mayhem: http://www.modelmayhem.com/520161"

Photographer: Angelica Hyde


I'd like to thank Annie again for taking the time to answer a few questions for me, be sure to check out all the links above for more of her work, as well as the links attached to the images for all the creatives involved in creating them.

Photographer: Stephen J


Ian
http://facebook.com/guffoggthegeek
http://twitter.com/guffoggthegeek