Friday, 30 November 2007
A few years ago I covered a wedding and guess what? The bride Ilona, has started a new line in handmade tiaras.
Last Sunday I did a session for her soon to be launched web site. Yes, the wedding market is colossal. Dresses, limos, flowers, food, drink, cakes, invites, the list is
almost endless. I hadn't even thought about tiaras. She is already getting plenty of inquiries. As a young mum, it is a tidy way of earning a nice income without leaving home. Good luck to her I say.
Mind you, I reminded her that they should carry a
" don't get too close" warning. They are so intricate that close contact joins them together as you can see by her entanglement with her big sister at her own wedding.
It was very funny right enough.
Monday, 26 November 2007
I went out for a look at the Glasgow light festival on Sunday night. It was fab! Glasgow Cathedral was the star attraction in my opinion. A series of projections onto the front elevation, accompanied by various pieces of classical music was quite breathtaking. Mind you, its cycle finished with "In the Summertime " by Mungo Jerry. I'm sure that there's a rational explanation for that bearing in mind it's November and freezing. Maybe it had something to do with St Mungo ? Ah!! who cares, the whole thing was brilliant.
Meanwhile down at Glasgow City Chambers, you would think Spielberg was shooting his latest ET Movie. There were three interactive light type devices shining through the columns and everyone was enjoying the buzz.
In what used to be a "no go" area after dark down on the River Clyde, the whole perspective had changed dramatically by the lighting to the bridges. It had a kind of somewhere abroad feel to it. You know that feeling when it's OK to see that sort of thing somewhere else and here it is on your doorstep. Glasgow is certainly right up there in the events department. If I were a tourist, I would have been loving it. I hope there is another light festival next year.
Sunday, 25 November 2007
I was put onto a great radio station in New York by a well known broadcasting pal of mine, who will remain nameless in case he gets the sack. East Village Radio is very, very, very, good. It doesn't matter what time of the day it is, the musical mix just seems to work. Don't take my word for it, have a listen.
I suppose my curiosity could be clouded as I spent some time in the Village
when I was in New York in the 80's. All sorts of things were going on but music was everywhere. I went to the legendary CBGB as you were guaranteed a great time.
When you look at the bands who have played there you will see what I mean.
Everything about New York is big and when I was looking through some of my old B&W photos I was reminded of the fragile world we live in. From the top of the Empire State Building, you can clearly see the World Trade Centre. I also had a meal in a beautiful restaurant at the top of one of the towers, the views over the Hudson and East River were spectacular.
The best way to get about was undoubtedly the Subway. All right, let's forget all the scare stories about never coming out after going in. Like any big city anywhere, there are certain places at certain times you wouldn't care to frequent but for getting about Manhattan it couldn't be beaten. Just about every street corner has a station access, down you go and you're off. If you haven't been to New York, go.
Friday, 23 November 2007
Craig and Christina arrived last night for a shoot. They made it clear that they were looking for something "stylish" or "different". It reminded me of the type of request hairdressers get all the time.
I have been aggressively marketing the studio over the last few months and it is proving to be very interesting. It's great to see the reaction of people when they see the results on screen. The beauty of high resolution digital photography is that you get to see the results within five minutes of the shoot finishing. You then choose only the images you want. No waste, no film, chemistry and mountains of prints. Fantastic for everyone. I have to admit, I do miss the darkroom and occasionally go in for a nostalgia break.
Here are a few shots from the dozens taken. Craig and Christina were great to work with and very happy with the results, so was I.
Thursday, 22 November 2007
Boo Hewerdine played a fantastic set in the back conservatory at Bar Brel last night. He is a really cool guy and was inviting people to join him on stage to play the Cajong. One of the audience was actually very good. He played for over an hour and seemed to be enjoying his glass of wine at the bar after the show.
I really like these wee gigs as they are technically challenging on the photo front. There is usually one teeny light, or in this case, one teeny and one stonking great red number.
Ah ! Photographers we're never happy about anything.
Wednesday, 21 November 2007
With all the madness going on in the city centre on Saturday night, I finally managed to get a taxi to a great new venue in Renfield Lane, Stereo.
The Poems were playing and I have to say, they were great. As usual don't listen to me, click the link and listen for yourself. Spotted in the line up was none other than one, Bobby Blubell.
There is so much fantastic music going on in Glasgow at the moment. I'm off to see Boo Hewerdine at Bar Brel tonight and yes it's sold out.
Monday, 19 November 2007
Saturday night in Glasgow. You would have thought everyone had won the lottery. For those of you from overseas, Scotland were playing the world champions, Italy, in a vital game that they had to win and on home soil. I went out for pint with my pal Tom in the west end and the name Tom Cruise, sprang to mind. Talk about Mission Impossible ! Well that's not strictly true. If you went to a pub with no telly, you were quids in. I have never seen the pubs so full, in fact I would reckon you would never have got near the bar in any of them.
Yes, we lost, but only just. It was then off to a gig in the city centre where nothing had changed, in fact, with all the revelry that was going on you would have thought we had won the match. One thing the Scots can't be accused of, being bad losers. As you can see by this supporter on the underground around midnight, nothing was going to spoil his party. His parting comment, "Never mind, we'll win the World Cup".
I couldn't imagine the scenes if that ever happened but going on our performance on Saturday, we could do it.
A new fridge, a pair of shoes, a night in a posh hotel, the list is endless.
Not for my old pal Tom. His weakness, old petrol cars. He was down from Shetland over the weekend and arrived in his latest acquisition. "What do you think ? Got it from a guy in Clarkston" he said. I have to admit, it did look like one of his better buys and believe me I've seen a few in my time.
We drove down to Clydebank to pick up his mountain bike which he had been storing in my garage over the summer. Jings, the boot was so big, the bike never touched the sides. It was like going back to the old days right enough. No computerised engine management system in this beauty. It was a bit like traveling along on an old comfy sofa.
It is astonishing that you can buy something so big for that kind of money. Yes, according to Tom it was the last real Volvo and it had blacked out windows which made it look quite sinister and intimidating. It also had a great name, a Volvo Torslanda.
(I'll bet that's Swedish for very big or massive or huge or cavernous.)
I hope it makes the journey to Shetland safely, where I'm sure it will feel right at home. That only leaves one question. What happens when it blows its final gasket ? Will it be floated out to sea on a blazing longboat, or buried in the nearest peat bog ?
Saturday, 17 November 2007
I have my own theories on this front and none of them conclusive. With more and more people populating the planet on a yearly basis, it only makes sense that we all use more and more energy. All that seems to do is create more and more pollution, tree cutting, road building, aviation, travel and general consumerism.
The one thing that has never failed to amaze me on all my travels, is that no matter where you go, whether it be beach combing in Shetland or in one case, I was sitting on a rock in the middle of nowhere in Victoria and there it was. An empty Coke can. You would think that the people who had the presence of mind to lug a full one to these remote parts of the planet might more easily take home a light empty crushed one for recycling. Now I'm not for one minute blaming Coca Cola for anything. I'm talking generally about our disposable nature about nearly everything which comes packaged for our convenience.
Could that be our problem ?
Tuesday, 13 November 2007
This could be my last blog before I set off for Antigua.
Yes, arrived in the mail this morning, notification that my name has come up in the Hispanic Lottery. My agent bought the ticket for me and all he wants is a measly 10%. I am truly minted. All I have to do is phone a geezer called Dr Mark Luis in Spain to arrange for the transfer of the cash into my bank account.
How much I hear you ask ? Well, I'm not supposed to tell you until my claim has been processed but I can't resist...... 815.510.00 Euros. Now I'll have to get going as I have to register before 2nd December or my money will be returned as unclaimed to the
Ministry of Hacienda.
Now we can't have that, can we ?
I was at school with a guy called Roddy. My eldest son is called Roddy and on Sunday night I went to see another Roddy.
Downstairs at Oran Mor, was hosting the totally brilliant Roddy Hart. I go to a lot of gigs and every so often a belter comes along. This was one such gig. I'm not going to try and tell how good, just click the link and listen.
Roddy was joined by none other than Eddie Reader for one tune, he then disappeared into
the crowd only to emerge up at the back and play an acoustic number with no amps. You could have heard a pin drop, utterly fantastic.
If this guy isn't a major headline act in the near future I give up.
Go and see him.
Saturday, 10 November 2007
Last Friday night I was off to record a lady called Margaret Mc Gregor receiving the title of "Freeman of West Dunbartonshire". This was a very formal affair which took place in the Millenium Hall in Gartocharn. The Provost and a host of dignitaries were present at the event. Margaret was great and it all went well.
I managed to get finished by around 10.00 pm and it was time for a swifty in one of my favourite pubs in the west end, Tennent's Bar. I like going there because it always has a great mix of people and the food is great. Friday night was no exception. I had to ask this quartet why they were dressed up. " It's our golf club theme evening", was the reply. I don't know about you but I can't think of any golf club that would let them across their door dressed like that. But hey, they seemed happy enough. Next, I spied a "wee dug" having a drink of Guinness. It didn't half kick up a stink when the last order bell rang. Never mess with a dug and its drink.
A guy asked me why I was taking the photos and I told him for no particular reason. "Will you take one of us"? he asked. No bother and here they are.
Friday, 9 November 2007
Where do all the years
They say there is a first time for everything, well it was the first time I had been driven anywhere with my eldest son Roddy at the wheel. We drove around for a while on a dark night in Helensburgh and I have to say, it was like driving with a veteran. He has already passed the theory side of things and going on his performance the other night, the rest should be a doddle.I still can't believe that it is over seventeen years since he was photographed at five days old. Yes that's him he's holding.
My other son Andrew, while all this was going on, was practicing his guitar. " I'm learning off the web dad", was his comment. Next day he was off playing footy and managed to pick up a yellow card for kicking the ball in the air, caused he told me, by frustration. Aye right.