Archive for category News

ST84Photo Has Become A Commercial Photographer

Hi guys,
I’m just letting you know that I’ve mode home from to my own hosted website. Being here was fantastic for learning how to blog about photography (I don’t know how to code!), but I bit the bullet and have set up my own websites now. They’re going really well, and I hope you’ll join me on them.

Commercial Photographer Blog

The ST84Photography blog is now set up to give great advice to businesses who want to hire a photographer, and details behind the scenes details of commercial photography shoots.

Commercial Photography in London and other places

I’m now working as a professional photographer in London serving business clients and editorial publications. My portfolio can be viewed here. The work also includes commercial and editorial images from around the globe.


NegativeReal is currently under development, but will be a home photobook and exhibition reviews, as well as some discussion about what photography is, and how it functions in society. Once it starts going live in the new year, I hope you’ll come to love it (and argue with it in the comments at times, too!).


Sorry I’ve been away. A mixture of working on wonderful new projects, relocating to the other end of the country, starting a new business, and some serious family stress has kept me from being active on here. But I really think you’ll enjoy the new platforms I’m publishing on – let me know what you think!

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Open Eye Gallery Reopens!

Yesterday, I had a lovely coffee with the Director of Open Eye, to talk about their fantastic new space opposite the Liver Building at Mann Island in Liverpool.

The gallery has been shut for around 6 months, as it moves from its old home in Wood Street. I’ll miss the Wood Street location, being in the heart of the art end of town, but the new location gives the gallery a prominent space in the Liverpool docklands area, appealing to visitors and adding stunning views from outside the gallery to the wonderful images on show inside.

Open Eye Gallery reopens to the public 5th November 2011, with exhibitions by Mitch Epstein (American Power), and Chris Steele-Perkins (The Pleasure Principle).

The Gallery also boasts a seriously funky exterior wall that will be the site for regular vinyl exhibitions by artists. The first one is Good Sailing, by S Mark Gubb and promises to be very striking and fresh, while drawing heavily on the traidional history of Liverpool’s docks.

From Patrick Henry, Director of Open Eye: “it’s been a lot of work but we’re really excited about the new space and what it will offer. We’re right at the heart of Liverpool’s Waterfront, a stone’s throw from Tate and the recently-opened Museum of Liverpool. The new Open Eye is twice as big as our former premises and for the first time we’ll have a dedicated gallery for changing exhibitions from the Open Eye archives. There’s also a great little shop, and a programme of artist talks, masterclasses and other events…”

Their new site has also just gone live, here

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Online Photography Workshop From Mimi Mollica

Earlier this year, photographer Mimi Mollica set up his first Photowrap workshop, an online documentary workshop taking place over several weeks.

Well, a new class is coming up, and I’m encouraging you to consider signing up.

The new class begins 20th October until 10th November, and Mimi says….

The Workshop theme is “Edges of the City”.
And Special Guests (99% confirmed) are Helene Binet Photographer, Kate Edwards Picture Editor The Guardian Weekend Magazine and Johanna Neurath Commisioning Editor T&H

I’ve worked with Mimi when he supplied an Instruction to participants in the Street Photography Now Project, and I was quite involved in seeing the planning and implementation of his first Photowrap class last spring. Both times, Mimi was really hands on, engages with his students extremely well, and does everything he can to make sure his projects are fair and serious value for money.

He’s extremely supportive in helping photographers develop photoessays and is also a great teacher of technique and making strong single images.

I love it when I can type something like this up, and say that I can’t recommend his workshop highly enough, without it being hype at all. It’s just the truth.

If you’re looking to improve your documentary photography, this is one workshop that is seriously worth considering.

But consider fast, because places are limited and they went like hot cakes last time. 😉

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DAM! Where Did All My Photos Go?!?

That would be a horrible feeling, right?

DAM stands for Digital Asset Management which, according to ye gods of “consists of management tasks and decisions surrounding the ingestion, annotation, cataloguing, storage, retrieval and distribution of digital assets. Digital photographs, animations, videos and music exemplify the target-areas of media asset management (a sub-category of DAM).”

It also happens to be something I’ve been working on a lot lately.

I work with stills photography, but I also have a background working in audio and have now started learning video production to develop multimedia skills. Which means a lot of digital assets, in different formats, used by different software. And a need to keep it all organised and easily available to me and to others.

As of next Wednesday, I’ll be blogging a series here on ST84Photo about Digital Asset Management, sharing what I’ve learned from diving fairly deeply into this myself. I asked the good folks on Flak Photo Network if they’d find these posts useful, and there does seem to be a need for it.

I’m by no means an ‘expert’ but I’m hoping this DAM series will:
* Help me clarify my ideas on the topic
* Help others learn more about good DAM practices
* Create a space for others to share their words of wisdom on this

So, I’m hoping to see you here on Wednesdays. 🙂

And, at the end of the series, I’ll be making the collection of posts available as a free downloadable .pdf file for anyone who wants it. I figure this format may be of use to anyone who wants to improve their DAM practices based on what we discuss here on ST84Photo

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Leica Shoot A Real Keeper In Customer Service

Okay, so by now, we all know the story that Leica have had some compatibility issues with their M9 and the SD cards used in them. Here at ST84Photo Blog, we’re really hoping this gets fixed by the time the penny jar has filled up enough to drop several ÂŁk on becoming a Leica user.

I’m quoting a story here as reported in Amateur Photographer magazine, although I’ve read it in a few places now. It regards a photographer who suffered from this compatibility issue…

“On his blog, he wrote that a SanDisk Extreme Pro 8GB card ‘crashed and became unresponsive’
The photographer – who has since complained to Leica – added: ‘ Afew days after, I had a high-profile portrait photo shoot for an important client… I took the M9 and my beloved 90mm with me, together with a new SanDisk SD card, not before installing the newest firmware update. It was a very long photo shoot with heavy production [and] a tight schedule…
It was just before the end of the shoot that the other new SanDisk Extreme Pro card crashed inside the M9, making the camera dead and the card unreadable in any device. With all the embarrassment, I had to shoot everything all over again with my back-up equipment.'”

Now, my initial reaction upon reading this was: hang on, you experienced problems with your M9 and SanDisk memory cards, and then you decided to use that very same combination of tools on a “high-profile” shoot for “an important client”? And one with “heavy production [and] a tight schedule”?!?

It seems a fairly rookie mistake to make – use the gear combo that might well be duff, as evidenced from earlier use of said combo. I’d be loathe to use that combo in a professional setting again until I was convinced it was not going to go all sad face on me.

But maybe that’s just because I spent some years working as a techie on tour, so I’m prone to hazard-check when gear is involved. And maybe he did test it thoroughly and that bit just got omitted somewhere along the line.

Still, anyone reading this, please note: If your gear screws up once, don’t use that same gear combo on the most important gig of your life soon afterwards. Instead, do thorough testing and avoid using it in a professional setting until you’ve corrected whatever went wrong the first time.

Leica, on the other hand, were not quite so scathing in their response to this photographer’s news as I have just been (I mean, seriously, it’s called “professional photography” for a reason…). No, instead they offered the photographer in question a gorgeous* Leica S2 Medium Format camera to use while they fix the M9/SanDisk card compatibility problem.

I mean, wow.

Leica sometimes get a bit of a bashing for being primarily owned by doctors and lawyers, and not thinking enough about the working pro photographer. But it looks like they’ve really stepped up to the plate here in acknowledging the M9/SanDisk fault and arranging an awesome replacement camera for this photographer while they work out the kinks in their rangefinder system.

Leica, there are caps being doffed in your honour. 🙂

*I reserve the right to call this camera “gorgeous”, having recently arranged one for landscape photographer John Davies to use. It is beyond gorgeous, even (yes, there is such a thing).

Update: A Note From JJ at Leica
We doff our hat back.
Thank you for the article! We are communicating on the SD card issue under Have now isolated the problem and will offer a solution as soon as possible.
^JJ / Leica-camera

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Italy Internship – Photogs and Graphic Designers (From COLORS Mag)

Anyone fancy it? COLORS Magazine are both hiring and seeking interns. Writers, photographers, designers, etc.

They’re looking for writing staff, and they’re also looking for interns in writing, photography, and graphic design. Interns would get their flights to Italy, accommodation, lunch, etc., paid for.

You can read more about it here.

I don’t usually recommend doing internships. In my opinion, it is much better to create your own opportunities, either through paid work, or by contributing significantly and uniquely to an organisation, filling a gap in their needs while avoiding the impressions that you’re just another lackey who spent a couple of months stuffing envelopes. But, when its COLORS Magazine we’re talking about, and a free trip to Italy is part of the deal, I’m inclined to change my mind… 😉

Internships are only open to those under-25, but the writing jobs are open to under-30s.

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G+ Gives Circles, But PLUS Gives A Revolution

Lately, David Hoffman has been telling me about PLUS. Nope, not Google+, but PLUS, which aims to be a genuinely and definitely useful online resource for photographers (while Google+, despite it’s highly promising start, is still a resource with limited and unproven benefits).

PLUS is the brainchild of LA photographer, and PLUS CEO, Jeff Sedlik, and is being promoted through the EPUK website.

Ever had one of those discussions about how easily copyrighted works are being used online? About how easy image theft is, and how much it is costing the industry? Or about how Orphan Works are being created by the online platforms we use (Facebook, this mean you, dear) not to mention being used by image-users as a scapegoat for failing to contact photographers?

Answer yes to any of those, and PLUS is something you really need to check out.

Ever been an image-user who comes across a great image in a magazine, and you want to use it, but there’s no byline and you’ve no way of finding its author? If so, PLUS is something you really need to check out.

In short, if PLUS is taken up by photographers worldwide, the image recognition software used by it will make it easy to locate the author of any registered image – you’d just take a photo of it with your phone, and access PLUS to find the author of it. This means images that couldn’t have been used before now can. This means photographers are more likely to get paid. And this means there is less defence for using an image without seeking permission, as for any registered image it would take a matter of seconds to find the contact details for its author. No excuses, just fair play to all in the image-business, meaning fair play from all in the image-industry.

Revolutionary? Google+ may have circles, but EPUK and PLUS may well have just reinvented the wheel…

In the words of EPUK:

“PLUS moves to save photographers, distributors and publishers

…and to make Orphan Works instantly identifiable.

The PLUS Registry sounds as exciting as a phonebook, but promises the largest evolutionary step for the imaging industry since the internet arrived.

Our EPUK article written by moderator Tony Sleep published today lays out a detailed explanation of the system and its potential .

The PLUS Coalition are offering supporting organisations a free listing in the the beta version of the non-profit PLUS Registry. This exciting new resource for the creative community will make it easy to identify and contact the creator and rights holder for any image, worldwide.

The PLUS Registry is provided by the non-profit PLUS Coalition, a global collaboration between all industries engaged in creating, distributing, using and preserving images. By connecting images to creators and rights information, the PLUS Registry lays the foundation for significant improvements in our industry, and will minimize the impact of future orphan works legislation.

Contact Tony Sleep: TonySleep[at]halftone[dot]co[dot]uk for more information.

David Hoffman

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Seconds2Real Photo Exhib Liverpool

Just got in from hanging the prints by Austrian/German Street Photography Collective, Seconds2Real.

Big shout out to Sam, owner of Bold Street Coffee for welcoming this exhibition to his space, and big shout out to Ceri from Open Eye Gallery who kindly helped with the hanging. Appreciated, guys! 😀

This exhibition of Seconds2Real Street Photography Collective prints is at Bold Street Coffee until mid-July, check it out over a coffee while you can!

Seconds2Real are an Austrian/German collective.

Bold Street Coffee Opening Times:
Mon-Sat 9am-6pm
Sun 10am-5pm

And now, for the photos…









(That’s me, doing some hanging. Those are my “techy clothes” and baggy for grooving to the photo goodness while being all techy and stuff:

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Seconds2Real Exhibition Exclusive Preview

Seconds2Real European Street Photography Collective are exhibiting work at Bold Street Coffee, Liverpool, from 15th June until 13th July, 2011.

To celebrate the exhibition, ST84Photo blog will be bringing you exclusive interviews and images with the photographers running throughout the exhibition. ST84Photo will also be documenting the installation and opening of the exhibition, to give those of you who can’t make it in person a taste of the brilliant atmosphere and images on display.

To get the ball rolling, this post would like to introduce the cast of exhibiting photographers:

Kay von Aspern – Vienna
Elisabeth Schuh – Vienna
Guido Steenkamp – Berlin
Thorsten Strasas – Berlin
Natalie Opocensky – Vienna
Alexander Magedler – Vienna
Heiko Menze – Vienna
Mario Cuic – Munich
Christian Reister – Berlin
Andreas Stelter – Minden

Locations were the images were made are:

The time frame the images were made during is:

Interviews will be coming to ST84Photo blog soon, so watch this space!
Update: Interviews with the Seconds2Real photographers will start appearing on ST84Photo from Thursday 16th June, 2011, so watch this space!

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Diemar/Noble Announce Fitzrovia Photography Prize

Diemar/Noble Logo (for ST84Photo Blog)

A representative from Diemar/Noble informed me about this year’s Fitzrovia Photography Prize, so I thought it worth sharing with my readers here. The prizes are superb, and I am hoping to find a couple of hours to spare when I’m in London before the deadline to try to make some frames to submit myself. It would be an amazing opportunity to get a portfolio review from the Gallery, and the rest of the prize packages are just as impressive.

Press Release From Diemar/Noble:
“This year Diemar/Noble Photography, London is pleased to announce The Fitzrovia Photography Prize sponsored by John Lewis, Oxford Street.”

The competition theme is ‘Within a Mile’ i.e. all photographs entered must have been taken within a mile radius of the gallery, which is situated in the heart of London. The competition is currently calling for entries.
Selected works will be exhibited from the 21st July until the 20th August 2011. The competition is being sponsored by John Lewis with prizes for both the winner and two runners up. The deadline for this competition is 25th June 2011 and there is no entry fee!

For more information please visit the Diemar/Noble Photography website

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