Dead gannets and rubber gloves

Dead birds and rubber gloves, pouches of Chinese fresh drinking water, sections of discarded fishing nets strewn across the tourist beach, stinking of rotting carcasses and seaweed. I think this might be what they call pollution or maybe the destruction of one of the finest surfing beaches in North Devon.

Photographs taken on Woolacombe beach May 2013.


Sans jury ni récompense

I wish I felt like experimenting with paint.

Aquetin carried out an experiment studying the light passing through the colored panes of glass in his veranda. Bernard wrote and commented on this experiment, ‘Aquetin observed the light streaming through the coloured panes of a glazed door and noticed that yellow produced an impression of sunlight; green of dawn; blue of night; red of twilight.’ Bernard painted ‘The Reaper’ in the key of yellow (often repeated later by Van Gough) and in the key of blue, ‘The Avenue de Clichy at Evening’. These paintings were exhibited at the Revue Independante, at the Salon des Independants and at the headquarters of Les Vingt in Brussells. Read more…

The Société des Artistes Indépendants (Society of Independent Artists), Salon des Indépendants, formed in Paris 19 July 1884. The association began with the organization of massive exhibitions in Paris and was established in response to the rigid traditionalism of the official government-sponsored Salon. Their exhibitions were where new artworks were often first displayed and where paintings were widely discussed and in some cases caused controversial outrage in the newspapers and journals of the polite, conservative Parisian society.

Choosing the tagline “No jury nor awards” (Sans jury ni récompense) the society’s aims were to champion new ideas and thoughts that were prevalent in the cafe cultures of Paris and Europe. These contemporary ideas were being marginalized by mainstream critics and galleries. The strategic alliance between these artists from different backgrounds and methodologies was extremely successful in promoting their collective vision. The publicity gained by this ‘outsider’ tactic became the launching pad for many artists, who by gaining notoriety and publicity, crossed over into the mainstream.

Albert Dubois-Pillet, Odilon Redon, Georges Seurat and Paul Signac were among its co-founders. For three decades their annual exhibitions moulded the art of the early 20th century. World War I brought a closure to the salon, though the Artistes Indépendants remained active.

Found somewhere to develop my 35mm film

With the demise of Jessops in Barnstaple I thought I was going to struggle to get my 35mm colour film processed – I found a place in South Molton so the panic is over.

Swingboats Woolacombe Beach by 35mm_photographs

The image above was taken with my trusty Pentax P30 35mm camera (no 3702885) using an out of date roll of Kodak Gold film (Kodak GT 800-4). There is something sad about motionless swingboats.

These are on Woolacombe Beach and I always look forward to them being re-erected after the long winter – their colours and painted swirls bring the promise of  hope to the desolate beach.

The winter population of Woolaconbe is very small (around 1,000), but during the summer large numbers of people come to the village for their holidays. Many are motivated to visit because of the excellent surfing conditions found locally.

Swingboats Woolacombe Beach, a photo by 35mm_photographs on Flickr.

The Pentax P30, 35mm film camera  has a semi-automatic mode, which chooses most of the settings but allows for more creativity.

Pentax P30 has shutter speeds from 1/1000 of a second to 1 second. The automatic mode on this film camera chooses the best shutter speed and aperture setting for the natural light available.

In 1952 Asahi Optical introduced its first camera, the Asahiflex (the first Japanese SLR using 35mm film). The name “Pentax” was originally a registered trademark of the East German VEB Zeiss Ikon (from “Pentaprism” and “Contax”) but, as all Germans patents were annulled with the country’s defeat, the name “Pentax” was taken by the Asahi Optical in 1957. Since then the company has been primarily known for its photographic products, distributed under the name “Asahi Pentax” (equipment was imported to the United States from the 1950s until the mid-1970s by Honeywell Corporation and branded “Honeywell Pentax”). The company was renamed Pentax Corporation in 2002. It was one of the world’s largest optical companies, producing still cameras, binoculars, spectacle lenses, and a variety of other optical instruments. In 2004 Pentax had about 6000 employees.

Swingboats Woolacombe Beach

Jessops Europe Limited

Jessops Europe Limited, trading as Jessops, is a British photographic retailing company. It was founded in Leicester in 1935 by Frank Jessop and traded under the name of The Jessop Group Limited. The business entered administration on 9 January 2013 and all Jessops retail stores ceased trading on 11 January 2013 until the British entrepreneur Peter Jones invested several million pounds into the company and formed Jessops Europe Limited.

Six stores opened on 28th March 2013. The re-launch at Oxford Street in London on 28th March 2013 received a huge amount of media interest & was attended by celebrities including actor James Corden.

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Community centre is bulldozed

There is profit in land but apparently no value in community.

Derelict public spaces are a common sight within small villages and towns around the UK. It seems to be impossible to keep these meeting places financially viable – they were once used as venues for parties, wedding receptions, exhibitions and discos but now that age as gone. “Essex County Council has sent bulldozers to the site… Read more

Essex County Council is the county council that governs the non-metropolitan county of Essex in England. It has 75 councillors, elected from 70 divisions, and is currently controlled by the Conservative Party. The council meets at County Hall in the centre of Chelmsford.

As of the 2011 census it serves a population of 1,393,600, which makes it one of the largest local authorities in England. As a non-metropolitan county council, responsibilities are shared between districts (including boroughs) and in many areas also between civil parish (including town) councils. Births, marriages/civil partnerships and death registration, roads, libraries and archives, refuse disposal, most of state education, of social services and of transport are provided at the county level.