issue023

The Hidden Lane

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PHOTOGRAPHY AND TEXT BY DEREK CLARK

DECEMBER 20th, 2018

Back in March this year, I shot some pictures of The Hidden Lane. This post has been sitting as a draft since then as it didn’t tie in with whatever we were doing around that time on Kage. Although it’s a bit out of season, I thought it would be a good idea to put this out as my last Kage post of the year. Sort of clearing out the cupboard so to speak.

When I revisited this post I was struck by how bright and colourful it was. I’m not sure if it was denial or a sense of false hope, but it surprised me that 2017 was not all doom and gloom (even though most of it actually was).

MARCH 20th, 2017

Like the wardrobe leading to Narnia, a typical close on a Glasgow street leads to the Hidden Lane. To be honest, there is actually a sign telling passersby it's there (businesses gotta survive), but it's still a bit of a surprise when you go through the close and arrive inside the Lane.

Brightly coloured doors and even a large building painted in the brightest yellow paint let you know you have arrived somewhere a little different. Different for Glasgow at least as we're not known for bright colours on buildings (although some of the islands off the west coast do embrace that sort of thing). There is actually a slightly odd feeling of stepping into another country, no doubt helped by the sudden appearance of sunshine on the day I visited.

I stepped into the tea shop and ordered a cup of tea and a piece of walnut cake. Sipping my tea from an old China cup that reminds me of visiting my granny as a child, I chat with the waitress about the lane. She tells me that one of the offices belonged to an MP from the Green Party and another was used for restoring antique furniture. I ask if it's ok to take a few pictures inside the tea room and with permission, grab my X-Pro2 and X100F and shoot a few photographs. The waitress comments on my cameras and asks if they are old film cameras. I wish I had brought the Hasselblad as I had intended, but wanted to travel light as I would probably be doing a lot of walking today.

I step out of the tea room and into the cold air, I turn right and enter an alley with brightly coloured doors. The second door is open and I look inside to see a young woman restoring an antique bench. Stepping inside, and with her permission, I shoot a few pictures and chat to her while she works. The bench is around one hundred years old and when she has finished it will hopefully be in use for another hundred or so. Isn’t that what we all wish for? That our work will live on after we’ve gone?

Live In The Moment

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PHOTOGRAPHY & TEXT BY DEREK CLARK

I’m a housefly called God and I don’t give a fuck...
...I’m the atomizer
I’m the vaporizer
I turn everything to crud
I like it here in your flesh and blood
I’m the elevator man don’t you see?
— Nick Cave

Live in the now. Live in the moment. That's what I'm constantly telling myself these days. But that's not always easy when you have a cloud hanging over the future as you know it. But I'm trying hard.

We tend to blame the past and put too much expectation on the future. But the past is gone and can’t be changed, and the future is uncertain and might not even exist for some of us. The present is a gift that should not be squandered. It might even be possible that the present is as good as it will ever be.

My kids are ten and twelve and in a few years they will fly the nest and start their own family. We will see them less and less as they move forward in their lives. I'm conscious that this is just a stage in my life and it's by no means a long-term thing. I can keep thinking about the good and the bad things that lie ahead, or I can open my eyes and see everything that is perfect at this moment in time.

Beautiful Chaos

By Bert Stephani

As soon as we agreed to take "everyday life" as our theme for this issue, my mind started spinning with ideas and concepts. None of them worked, there was always something missing. And then it hit me: everyday life doesn't thrive within the confines of a concept. So I just let it rip. 

Since I discovered mirrorless cameras, I've pretty much always carried one with me. And lately I started wondering why I used to make tons of those real life intimate images and now I hardly ever make any. Are the kids too old for this now? Aren't their enough interesting things happening in my life? Or even worse ... did I loose my mojo? Although these reason may carry some validity, it's not that. You see, I was stilling carrying a camera everywhere, I just stopped using it to photograph every day life.

I revisited my archive from a couple of years ago to investigate how I made those great family pictures in the past. I definitely had more winners back then, but only because I took way more pictures. Quality should always be the goal for a photographer but sometimes quantity helps to achieve quality. It's rare when all the stars align in such unposed pictures: the perfect moment, great light, a good background, ... And when it happens, it only lasts for a split second. 

The say: "the best camera is the one you have with you". But that's not true ...

THE BEST CAMERA IS THE ONE YOU HAVE IN YOUR HANDS
(with a full battery, an empty card, without lens cap)

12 Hours

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Photography & Text by Kevin Mullins:  Fujifilm X100F

Monotony has nothing to do with a place; monotony, either in its sensation or its infliction, is simply the quality of a person. There are no dreary sights; there are only dreary sight seers.
— G.K. Chesterton, Alarms and Discursions

In a world of seeming monotony, there is I suppose there is a story in everything.

This month, we decided to document our everyday life and I immediately knew that it would be kind of dull.  But also, perhaps, a bit cathartic.

You see, even though I believe I have one of the best jobs, I still have a daily grind. 

I have the same issues and worries today as I did five years ago and I still feel like I'm walking through treacle often.

In the end, it turned out to be around 12 hours to encompass this.

I wanted to give a viewpoint as to what I see.  Every day. 

Not a romanticized version of anything, but honest warts and all series of images.

These images are not pretty, and can't really be considered much more than snapshots, but they are true to the voyeuristic principles of photojournalism.  What was in front of me, I photographed without adornment.

Nothing is moved, nothing is cleaned and nothing is edited.

This is my daily life.

I'm very privileged to live in a beautiful market town, and once my day is done I get to walk through a gorgeous Cotswolds scene to our beautiful, but small and cramped, 400-year-old cottage.

I still need to change the water in my car, and I still find my daughters dolls terrifying.  

But I'm grateful for the monotony I have to endure if in fact, endure is the right verb to use.  

05.05 retrospect

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Photography and words by Jonas Rask

Ever since I started shooting Fujifilm cameras back in 2011, I started carrying my camera with me everywhere I go. 
The store, concerts, recitals, family gatherings, the couch. You get the point. Everywhere. 

Whenever I give lectures on photography, it’s always my key point. - Always wear a camera. You never know what situations will present it self. 
This has a very desirable side effect. Most of my images are images of my everyday life. Life as it happens around me, in front of my lens. 

Maybe not exciting in present tense, but when viewed in retrospect, it becomes what photography is destined to be. Preservance of memories. Those fleeing moments that you want to hang on to forever. 

I dug into my library. 
I found one monochrome
I found one colour

6 years. 12 images. 1 date.

This is my everyday life. On May 5th. The past 6 years.

 

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18

In seven days

By Patrick La Roque

On day one, it was my birthday.

I ate popcorn at the movies with Jacob
then Szechuan back home,
take-out—but good take-out.
My daughter baked a lovely cake too.

All week I dreamt odd dreams
a dying fish, a sacred mountain
a film actress, from old teenage galaxies;
long gone.
I gave a talk at a camera club;
tried my new hammock;
started a new book;
drank tea.

On Saturday I mowed the lawn
for the first time this year.
On Sunday we had barbecue
for the first time this year.

And our world turned
a fresh, cleansing green
shades of a hushed revolution
in seven days.

Waypoints

Waypoints

Surry Hills, my suburb in Sydney, is a bit different to everywhere I've lived before.

The history of this area is much more visible, in the buildings and streets that surround me every day; and being so close to the centre of Sydney means I spend much more of my time walking from place to place, spotting little details that haven't changed in a hundred years or more.

So my mental map of this city, built up over the last five years of living here, is based on these markers, these waypoints - the old church, the loading dock, the grocer - that tell me how far it is home, where to turn, which block this is…

7x023

Bricked In  Derek Clark | X-Pro2, 35mm f1.4. 1/1600 sec at f1.4, ISO 200

Bricked In
Derek Clark | X-Pro2, 35mm f1.4. 1/1600 sec at f1.4, ISO 200

Cockatoo Island
Robert Catto | X-H1, 18mm f/2. 1/60 at f/8, ISO 3200.

Just us, Sis
Jonas Rask | X-Pro2, XF50mm, f/8, 1/400, ISO 200.

Lilith  Vincent Baldensperger | X-Pro2. | 56mm 1/125 at f/1.4, ISO 100.

Lilith
Vincent Baldensperger | X-Pro2. | 56mm 1/125 at f/1.4, ISO 100.

Buds  Patrick La Roque | GFX 50S,  1/1250 at f/2, ISO 100.

Buds
Patrick La Roque | GFX 50S,  1/1250 at f/2, ISO 100.

Endurance  Kevin Mullins | X-T2 with XF16-55mm Lens at 55mm 1/550 @ ISO 200 F2.8

Endurance
Kevin Mullins | X-T2 with XF16-55mm Lens at 55mm 1/550 @ ISO 200 F2.8

Juliette  Bert Stephani | GFX 50S, vintage Minolta Rokkor 58mm f/1.4 with Kipon adapter,  1/500 @ f/2, ISO 100

Juliette
Bert Stephani | GFX 50S, vintage Minolta Rokkor 58mm f/1.4 with Kipon adapter,  1/500 @ f/2, ISO 100