Todays Picture

Todays Picture
Squinty Bridge Glasgow

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Scary Stuff !

I spotted this insect at the weekend.

It had just landed onto a hand rail and therefore gave away the fact that it's of the flying kind.

Last summer, I spotted an even bigger one ( same species ) in the garden and asked if anyone knew what is was, no reply to that, so here goes again. The reason I'm curious is because it looks like something that should be in a jungle, not Clydebank.

It looks really menacing taken at a jaunty angle close up.

Is this why most of us are usually scared of insects ?

Monday, 19 April 2010

End Of An Era.

Nothing is forever, I must stop saying that but it is true.

On Sunday, the Glasgow Transport Museum at the Kelvin Hall shut its doors for the last time before the big relocation to the new state of the art premises next year on the banks of the Clyde. It looks good to me

I don't know how many times I visited the place when my boys were growing up as they never tired of going and it was a great escape on a wet weekend. I can even remember going to the original transport museum on the south side which is now the Tramway.

On Sunday there was an emotional gathering rounded off with speeches and at 5.00 pm, a piper played everyone out and the doors were shut for the last time. It was a fantastic city attraction but I'm sure the new one will be just as good.

It'll be interesting to see if there will be a charge to get in. One of the things that visitors to the city can never understand is why the museums and art galleries are free to enter.

Another Great Debate.

When I first started listening to music seriously in the 60's, you had the The Beatles and the Rolling Stones.

No contest !!!

Then along came the 70's. You had Bruce Springsteen and Tom Petty. Now this was a lot more difficult for me never having seen 'The Boss' live. On the other hand, after queuing all night to get tickets for Nils Lofgren at the Apollo in 1977, I was completely blown away by his support band yes, one
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. What a night that was! Maybe that has swayed me ever since over to Tom's tunes. I still have the original ticket stub. By the way, check out the Apollo web site, it is absolutely phenomenal.

I took these photos at a 1992 Heartbreakers gig at SECC.

Both of them have written many classics but I never really felt the urge to buy any Springsteen albums whereas not only did I start with vinyl, I then went onto tape and finally (so far) CD's of Tom's recordings.

Yesterday I heard a tune by 'The Boss' called Girls In Their Summer Clothes, it is fantastic.

I don't think I'll ever get a definitive answer to this personal dilemma.

Festival Of Visual Art.

Running until the 18th of July, is the festival of visual art at Glasgow's Tramway.

You can see Douglas Gordon's 24 hour Psycho which has been described as 'one of the defining icons of contemporary art'..... I didn't get it. A huge space screening B&W split projection of the film in slow motion accompanied by crows squawking and you could watch them as well on three TV's stacked as a pyramid.

However, next door there is a nugget by way of an installation by Swiss artist Christopher Buchel. I'm not going to try and explain the experience as it is far to complex. Just get to see it.

Saturday, 17 April 2010

"Fitba Crazy"

Over the past two days,I have been shooting stills for a promotional film about Glasgow.

On Friday afternoon during the lunchtime break, I was doing some editing on the laptop in Buchanan Street when I saw this young guy performing.

He was a genius with a football.

Monday, 12 April 2010

Bygone Days.

You know that line about steam trains "being alive"'s true!

When my boys were wee, we used to go and visit them at Bo'Ness. I hadn't been back for about fourteen years and the whole experience is much better. We used to take the train to the old lead mine and explore it.

The station is like a time warp and all the enthusiasts dress in uniforms from the 40's & 50's. Also on show is a class 27 diesel locomotive, even it had it's own charisma and I think there were loads of them around way into the 80's.

Even if you think you don't like steam trains, visit this place before you make your mind up. You'll be converted.

Friday, 9 April 2010

What Goes Round...As They Say.

On breakfast news this morning it was reported that the updated version the 60's musical Hair had opened in London's West End to huge acclaim.

I was only about twelve or thirteen when the original show hit the stage to huge controversy and outrage and I remember the iconic "big hair" psychedelic poster which I believe was modelled by Marsha Hunt.

She later admitted that Brown Sugar was written about her but had earlier turned down the offer to advertise Honky Tonk Woman. ( My favourite tune ever )

Now you are probably thinking where the link is here but it is quite simple. On Easter Sunday, I spotted this young lady on Byres Road with "big hair", the rest is total coincidence.

Thursday, 8 April 2010

Easter Sunday In The Trossachs.

When I was in my early teens, my best friends mother was the headteacher at Brig O Turk primary school in the Trossachs.

I remember the first time travelling up the winding and narrow "Dukes Pass" from Aberfoyole, getting to the top and looking down over Loch Achray and the then, Trossachs Hotel. It was a magical place with so many great spots that I'm not going to try and explain them.

I'll let these photos set the scene for you.

One thing though, if you are ever travelling along beside Loch Venachar, stop at The Harbour Cafe. It has the best food and the best views in the area. In a word........spectacular.

Thursday, 1 April 2010

April 1 1985.

Since it is "April Fool's Day", I thought it would be interesting to see what I was doing a quarter of a century ago today.

According to my photographic negative archive, this was it. Scotland were being defeated by Canada at the "Silver Broom", better known as the World Curling Championships. I remember that the Kelvin Hall in Glasgow was turned into a temporary ice rink and the whole affair was spectacular. Teams from all over the world arrived in the city and competition was fierce for the coveted title.

It was a very busy time for me as I was operating my photo wire service to sports desks on newspapers in Canada, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Switzerland where curling is a huge participant sport. Canada beat Sweden in the final and I recall that the Canadian skip Al Hackner, had the nickname "The Iceman". He was the the man to beat but no one did that year.

Curling is a sport that most people have never tried and I liken to snooker in the sense that you tend to only see it on TV and the people playing, make it look easy as they are the best in the world. I have only tried it once and believe me it is extremely difficult but great fun at the same time.

I thought you might like a look at a wire machine. It is astonishing how easy it has become to send photos around the world today. Back in those days you had to carry around a portable darkroom with trays of chemicals, tongs, hairdryers, photo paper and all the paraphernalia needed to produce a 10x8 inch print which was then strapped onto a drum and each B&W transmission took 7.5 minutes per photo. It was not a cheap piece of kit either costing over £3,500 back then. As you can see, by today's standards, it looks and is a museum piece but thousands of news photos were sent worldwide to newspapers from this very machine.

Now you send high quality colour images from your phone and computer in seconds but sorry folks, all the fun has gone.