Impressions of Hastings

2013 was a difficult year for me for photography. The weather was awful (it didn’t stop raining, did it) and combined with the economic depression people looked quite miserable – so taking photos within my preferred genre (street) became quite a challenge. Yes, I know some photographers say they get their best images in bad weather – but all I seem to get is wet!

Anyway one evening at our photographic society we had a visit from guest speaker Ian McGowan FRPS. A lovely guy and an inspirational speaker who encouraged us to take images for the sheer fun of it and not just for competitions. He showed some of his work, which included close up images taken with a compact camera of reflections in tiles on the side of a building and others of paint splashed on the sides of boats. They were amazing impressionist images and got me fired up to have a go – so one very cold but dry September Sunday we trotted off to Hastings on the South coast where we hoped to find some inspiration. Not a usual shoot for us as all we took with us were our small compact cameras. We came across the Jerwood Gallery, on the beach in the old fishermen’s quarter, which Ian McGowan had mentioned in his presentation. An amazing building clad in a skin of dark pewter-glazed tiles that shimmer with an oily iridescence (as it says on their website!).  Getting up close with my camera I clicked away.. not really sure of what I was achieving, but the idea was to have fun not perfect images.

After a while we migrated to the beach to take a look at the boats on the shingle and see what we could find there. Again I snapped away, just hoping something might jump out at me later when I downloaded them onto my computer. After an hour or so we decided we had had enough as by then we were frozen to the core – so we headed for our favourite fish and chip shop for lunch (well you can’t go to a fishing port and not sample the wares, can you!).

Back home I excitedly downloaded the images and was amazed at what jumped out at me. Several pleasing impressionist images and a new way of looking at the world through the eye of my camera.

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