Monday, 29 January 2018

1676 : Whitewash Doggerel

INCH BEACH, KERRY, IRELAND (1967) : I must have taken this photograph 50 years ago when we were holidaying in Ireland. The author of this whitewash doggerel is unknown, and it is probably best that it remains so. Some of the words are stolen from Robert Frost, but whoever stole them left all the style behind.

Thursday, 25 January 2018

1675 : Cleaned, Washed And Bleached

PRINCESS STREET & HALIFAX TOWN HALL (c1966) : I must have taken this photograph 50 years ago and looking back on it now, the thing that immediately stands out is the blackness of the stone. Now it has been cleaned and washed and the industrial history of the town has been bleached out.

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

1674 : Freda, Daughter Of Emily

POSSIBLE FAMILY PHOTOGRAPH (1930s) : Someone has written on the back of this studio photograph from the 1930s : "Freda, daughter of Emily". I have no idea who Freda or Emily are, and I don't recognise the face. What is a slight cause for concern is that the handwriting is mine!

1673 : Cut And Pasted, Grand And Gruesome

BROAD STREET, HALIFAX (2018) : I am not entirely sure how this happened but, as a general rule of thumb, I find that if you continue to press buttons long enough on programmes like Photoshop, you end up with an image that is interesting. This collection of buildings - old and new, grand and gruesome - seem almost as though the have been cut and pasted onto a night view of Halifax.

Monday, 22 January 2018

1672 : When Cogs Ruled The World

BESSEMER CONVERTER, KELHAM ISLAND INDUSTRIAL MUSEUM, SHEFFIELD (1984) : There is something satisfying about cogs, something dependable; you know what fits where and what drives what. Cogs never cause trouble, rarely do they try to rule the world.

1671 : The Only Decent Place in Fixby

1912 POSTCARD, GOLF CLUB, FIXBY, HUDDERSFIELD : On the reverse of this card "G" writing to her friend Dora says, "I have had tea twice at the Hall on this Card as Miss W is a member, it used to be a private mansion. It is the only decent place in the district, I think."

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

1670 : Post-Industrial Tsunami

When you walked around Sheffield with a camera in the early 1980s, you couldn't help but capture a story of industrial decline. The factories and workshops looked as though they had been suddenly abandoned as a wave of post-industrial change swept everything before it.

Tuesday, 16 January 2018

1669 : 'Twixt Demolition And Decoration

Bradford Road, Brighouse (c.1994)
I studied this scan of one of my old negatives for a long time before I finally recognised it. It is the site of what was to become the new Sainsbury's Supermarket in Brighouse. The state of the building plot - 'twixt demolition and decoration - dates the original photograph to the early to mid 1990s.

Monday, 15 January 2018

1668 : Flats And Slopes In Sheffield

Where else but Sheffield would you have found a ski slope bumping down the hillside into the midst of a high-rise Council estate? In the years since this photograph was taken, the ski village burnt down and most of the flats were demolished. There are now plans to rebuild the ski village - not the flats.

Sunday, 14 January 2018

1667 : The Case Of The Concrete Picture Frame

We've got this lovely old Victorian town hall in Halifax, designed by Charles Barry and his son Edward. So what's the best way to show it off? I know, let's construct a concrete picture frame to view it through!

Friday, 12 January 2018

1666 : Bathless In Halifax

As children, we would be bussed from our village school to Akroyd Place Swimming Baths in Halifax each week. It was a bleak place, flanked by mills and terraced houses, reeking of soot and chlorine. The mill remains, but the baths are gone.

Thursday, 11 January 2018

1665 : Statutory Trippers

These days, there is a trend amongst seaside resorts to place sculptures on the seafront to mimic day-trip times gone by. Thirty years ago, in Bridlington, such municipal memorials were unnecessary: volunteers from countless northern towns would fulfil the role.

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

1664 : Hands Across The Ages

I look back at this image from the perspective of 55 years - most of a lifetime - and what I notice in particular is my hands. My stomach may have expanded and my hairline declined, but those hands have aged most of all.

Monday, 8 January 2018

1663 : Thirty Year Old Date Stamp

It is strange how we visualise the past in monochrome. The styles and the shops along Haymarket, Sheffield are long gone, but it is the bleached blacks and wanton whites that provide the thirty year old date stamp.

Friday, 5 January 2018

Thursday, 4 January 2018

1661 : Infused With An Electric Spark

DODGEMS, SKEGNESS (c.1982) : It's the smell I remember: a cocktail of candy floss and chips, infused with an electric spark. And the teenage boys looking in, and the teenage girls looking out.

Tuesday, 2 January 2018

1660 : A Misplaced Attachment

Whitby Harbour, May 2002

There is something shockingly simple about a boat: a thin skin, a brace or two, a misplaced attachment. And colours that put the black mud of Whitby harbour to shame.

Monday, 1 January 2018

1659 : Nice Shapes

Some old black and white photographs strip away all the detail and leave you with nothing but shapes; like a silhouette made by cutting holes in white card which is held against a dark background. I took this photograph of Crookes Valley Park in Sheffield in the early 1980s. Nice shapes.

FOUND 1 : Walking With Confidence

  FOUND 1 : The joy of found photographs is that, whilst they provide a visual superstructure, you are free to construct your own backstory ...