Flower Friday

I missed last week. Just stupidly busy at the moment, although in a good way 🙂

I haven’t been taking many flower pictures either lately, so this is an old one from the summer. I quite like the mellow parma violet tones.

Got to dash for school pick up! Have a good weekend everyone!

words to shoot by: water (2)

This was my other option for the words to shoot by entry, which I also like, but I decided the other trio had more impact in the end. I still like these though I think they are quite tranquil. What do you think? (Incidentally, these are medium format shot on the rollei, the others on my iphone)

© images and content Emily Hughes and searchingtosee, 2012

words to shoot by: water

I was very excited to be selected to as a guest contributor on the words to shoot by blog after an open call for entries (if you scroll down to the guest contributions you will see my entry). Every other week a selection of contributors submits a triptych in response to a single word. This week the word was water, and here are the shots I came up with:

© images and content Emily Hughes and searchingtosee, 2012

About a girl

this summer she skipped and swam
clutched piles of acorns in her hands
her chubby limbs grew long and lean
hair tousled in the warm breeze
hidden treasures in secret places
dreams of ponies and princesses in faraway places
she fell in and out of love and
studied the morphing cloud-shapes up above
friendships were made then quickly forgotten
I dried her weary tears of frustration

this summer she let go of my hand
just for a little while….

Later I brushed the tangles out of her long brown hair, pulled it back.
She winced.
Too tight! She cried.
I smoothed the creases out of blue checked dresses
(blinking back the tears).

As she tugged white cotton socks up
over bruised shins.
Fastened up shiny black shoes and
fumbled with unfamiliar buttons,

she looked on, concern in her wide hazel eyes.
Don’t worry mummy, I’ll always be your little girl, she said
(I let the tears come).

This summer was hers for the taking,
but she hung back.
She wasn’t quite ready
(I was secretly glad).

Her time will come

For my beautiful girl

© images and content Emily Hughes and searchingtosee, 2012

Flower Friday (sorry late again!)

© images and content Emily Hughes and searchingtosee, 2012

My grandfather’s study

See here for my previous post about my grandfather.

© images and content Emily Hughes and searchingtosee, 2012

Rolleiflex

At last I have some recent images from my beloved rolleiflex to share.

These were all taken this summer in Sidmouth, Devon and various locations in France.

I didn’t make any adjustments to the images apart from the odd minor crop or straightening of a wonky horizon as I wanted to show them as they are (although some of them would work really well in black and white) This constitutes two rolls of film (you get 12 to a roll), so I was pleased I got so many images I liked considering focusing was pretty hard (the focusing screen is very dark on my camera), and framing can also be quite tricky. I was also guessing a lot with exposure as my light meter is broken.

For those who are interested I used Fuji Reala which is a print colour film (C-41) 100 ASA. It was out of date which probably accounts for the graininess and the slightly antique colour cast they have. For some I used a tripod but most were handheld.

© images and content Emily Hughes and searchingtosee, 2012

Flower Friday

Something a bit abstract for today.

Happy weekend everyone!

Emilyx

© images and content Emily Hughes and searchingtosee, 2012

Forever blue

Heart flip

Summer draws to an end. Start of a new school year. It feels like a good time for pause, reflection and assessment.

A time for taking stock.

I’ve been struggling a bit with my blog lately. Struggling to organise my thoughts into any kind of coherent output. Struggling to find focus. I have random notes and jotting everywhere; projects half-started, half-finished; ideas, sentences half-formed… And always the day-to-day pulls me back, calling me away from delicious daydreams. The urgency of my children’s cries and demands grounding me back to the reality of the here and now.

Yet strangely, I feel more inspired than ever.

I guess every blog hits that six-month sticking point (or thereabouts). That crossroads moment where you feel you need to sit down and have a good think about what direction you want to take it in. When I started blogging back in April I had a very clear idea of what I wanted the blog to be about: photography and phenomenology. And that was it, pretty much. Yet, over the days and weeks and months I have found myself meandering down other (delightful) avenues, exploring novel nooks and crannies, and I have realised that I cannot be so blinkered in my approach. I didn’t bank on being constantly inspired by other bloggers, for one thing. My mind is continuously busy whirring, making connections and associations, thinking up new ideas and approaches.

As a consequence, I feel like I have strayed a little from my original blogging intentions. But not too much, and it’s OK. I think it’s OK to alter the flight path a little, take a few diversions. I’ll get there, to my destination, in the end, I think. Perhaps even a little wiser and a lot more enriched for it.

I have made myself a few promises, though. Namely, to try to build on some project ideas I have had, and to carry on with other projects I have started and left hanging. In particular my real film project, which I wrote about here and here (look out for some rollei pictures very soon!); my things to do with your instagrams explorations which I posted about here and here; my collections on colour (which I started here), as well as another photograph exchange idea I have (which I will post about very soon – part of my attempt to re-discover the physical element of photography). And of course, I will continue to post lots of photographs (which broadly fit under the umbrella of ‘my interpretations of a phenomenological approach to photography’), philosophical musings, a bit of creative writing here and there, and my flowers on Fridays.

There, I’ve published it on my blog. Now I have to do it!

In addition, (just for your info) I have started trying to become a bit more active on flickr, and have also set up a tumblr account which I am using to post pictures which represent moments of simple everyday sensory pleasures for me (a cup of coffee, a shoulder-blade, cotton on skin).

Thereby, I hope I am starting to, attempting to, very tentatively, put my finger on this aesthetic, this visual experience of the everyday, the mundane, moments of wonderfulness which I am searching for.

I hope that this blog has been and will continue to be a celebration of the everyday and the ordinary; the vernacular, which photography has the amazing power to capture and bring to light in such unbelievable beauty, for me. These, though, are not the moments which made you laugh out loud or jump for joy. These are not the big things in life. They are the subtle things which might raise a smile, or even just a smirk, that might generate a warm fuzzy feeling inside, make your heart lurch, or maybe even trigger an (inward) sigh… Nothing audible, nothing amazing. Nothing that measures on the richter scale. But the stuff of life. They may evoke a tingling and fizzing of the senses (as much as a photograph can) and, hopefully, spark something familiar, some chemical reaction in the synapses of your brain; a trace, a memory, of something or some moment which you inhabited a long, long time ago.

Finally, I had also planned to start doing some photo book reviews, but realistically this may be something I need to put on the back burner for a while (we have a very busy few months ahead of us).

Anyway, to finish, here is something I started a long while ago and finished the other day, which I wanted to share. It feels quite relevant, somehow, to what I have been writing about here:

Forever blue

Thoughts tangle with memories.
Half-spoken words dissolve
on my tongue
and I turn to watch them
drifting out of reach,
always out of reach

I press my pen nib into the indulgent space before me, but
too hard.
It spreads, splits,
scratches
snaps;
a teardrop of rich inky blue
pooling like a film of oil floating on creamy, naked foam

Blue.
Forever blue.
It creeps slowly,
seeps and stains.
Octopus blood
on my page

Because Octopus’ have blue blood.
Not the crimson red of
pain,
or the hot deep flush of
lust and
longing and
life

Red of a schoolboy’s crush
A freckle-faced blush
Sun scorched toes
Wrinkling under sandy coves
A first kiss
Lingering moment of bliss
A grazed knee
Or the throbbing swell sting of a bee

Blue.
Forever blue.
Cool,
calm,
constant
as the endless ocean

Piercing dots
Of forget-me-nots
The sad mournful tune
Of a weighty round moon
Warm hazy skies
Pale and clear
Reflected in a newborn baby’s eyes
Pure velvet breath
Soothes the mottled bruise of death

And (rarely) octopus’ eat their own arms

*****

© images and content Emily Hughes and searchingtosee, 2012

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