Caroline Shipsey

Monday, 3 December 2007

Exposed - The Exhibition

Following on from my post yesterday I thought I would share my thoughts about the exhibition. It was the images of Joe Cornish that really brought home just how climate change is affecting our landscape.
He works with a large format camera - an 5x4 Ebony field camera, I believe shooting transparencies. His website has a great deal of information about his equipment and methods of working. Although Joe fully embraces digital technology he does not currently shoot digitally.

Anyway, back to the exhibition, apart from landscapes, there were images of properties owned by the National Trust that are being severely affected by the amount of rainfall. Many of these buildings simply weren't built with the extremes of rainfall we now receive, their guttering and roof design can't cope and the end result is evident in damp and rotting timbers. Ludicrously, because many are listed buildings it is difficult to make necessary alterations due to planning restrictions.
One of Joe's images shows ""The ‘permanent’ snowline above 610m (2000ft) in winter is already a thing of the past, as this image of Carneddau taken winter 2005/6 illustrates. Predictions are that by 2080 there may be up to 80 percent less snow with most areas experiencing more runs of snowless winters.""

Sunday, 2 December 2007

Winter Challenges & Climate Change

The winter here in the UK seems to be another one characterized by rain and wind - lots of the former and the latter being very strong. I've had a new camera and lenses for almost a month now and would like to be using it everyday but am generally being defeated by the bad weather. I'm not a fan of 'blue sky thinking', I love clouds and dramatic skys, frost and snow, but theres no way I can create images that please me in driving rain and dull, flat light. There is no doubt in my mind as a simple photographer observing the countryside around me that climate change is making it less likely that I can take photographs as I used to during the winter months.

In 1991 I stood in the freezing waters of the River Barle on Exmoor, the temperature was -8c, cold enough to cause film to become brittle and break ! I would give anything to repeat that experience - here in the south west of England, or to see frost hanging on the trees day after day, the ground rock hard under my feet instead of slurping through mud.

The National Trust has an exhibition 'Exposed - Climate Change in Britain's Backyard' featuring the work of 10 top UK photographers which confirms my thoughts. When I first heard about the exhibition there was a sense of relief - the realization that I am not just imagining it, failing to make the most of the good days, or just being a miserable old ***** looking for any excuse for not taking pictures.

The exhibition is touring the country and is at Bristol Museum until 9th December so I'm off to see it today, I'm excited at seeing the work of the photographers who have contributed but almost scared to see the awful truth.

Saturday, 1 December 2007

Blurb Books

A few days ago I received the sample book from Blurb - this had simply been an exercise in seeing how a random selection of images were reproduced, quality of paper, printing, binding etc. I wasn't testing out the convenience of the BookSmart software used for actually creating the book and didn't add any text other than the title.

I have to say I was pleased with the result and costwise it is certainly good value for money, though its important to remember that the service is not aimed at publishing for resale in quantity.

Denises Goldberg's blog
has some useful comments about the BookSmart software - its near the end :) I've come to know Denise through Smugmug/Dgrin, I enjoy her photography and writings and value her opinions which are always considered and thoughtful.