Part 8 – To Cardiff and Beyond
After a great time in Amsterdam, I arrived home with a bucketful of images to sort and process. As you can see from all the posts I made, that there were plenty, and probably won’t surprise you that I still have loads that haven’t been processed.
Anyway, even with all those images to process we mustn’t sit on our laurels, or at the computer. With the sun shining and in the month of May, the itch starting, I had to get back into Cardiff Centre and also The Bay. So I followed this couple there!
Things had changed on my return from Amsterdam. I know the sun was shining, but it wasn’t that. My confidence in what I was doing was fine when I went to Amsterdam, but I think it may have been the experience there, that I came back with even more. A sense of feeling “I’m good at this stuff”. I don’t want to sound big headed, I’m not like that, what I mean is I had reached a point where I was very confident going out shooting and the comments, feedback and emails I was getting were so positive towards my work. I had started the Blog and it was going well. I think in starting the Blog I was in a way putting myself out there, out there on my own as opposed to just having a photostream on Flickr where I was one amongst many. A sort of speaking out. Making posts on what I think Street is. At times I know this is against the “Die Hards of Street”, but this is my version, and that is what I have been trying to get over. Do what you want!
I found I was now seeing and not just looking. Being in Amsterdam, with so many shooting opportunities, and creating series of shots i.e. benches, maps, pushbikes, as opposed to bicycles. I was doing things my way. All of this put together had started a new injection of self confidence. I felt like this girl, really happy. I was going out with a smile on my face and really enjoying what I was doing. I still am!
I had learned to not only compose in the viewfinder, but see that shot before the viewfinder is to your eye. Seeing the Title of the shot as I look, I still do that. It’s very rare that I get a shot I rate if the title wasn’t there at the time. I don’t know how that works, it is just something in your head. I had also learned about placing myself in preparation, as opposed to moving once the shot is there. This is not an easy thing to do as you have to predict the way someone is going to go. I do use the “Rule of Thirds” in my shots, but usually vertical. I prefer letterbox, or “16:9” or less, as opposed to “4:3”. They just seem right to me. Some people may say there is wasted space to the right or to the left. No, that is there on purpose.
With May over and into June, I decided to take a trip to Bath. About an hours run from home, I decided to go on the 1st of the month, and just by chance there was a fringe festival on.
Bath is always full of tourists, as well as the locals, but with the fringe on all the “Arty” types came together, so there was an excellent mix. I got so many shots of all the different types of people, but there is one that truly stands out and it is this one. To me it has everything.
Those were the locals on Kingsmead Square, but when you went to the Abbey and The Pump Room area, you could be forgiven for thinking you had been transported to a totally different City. There are many things to see in Bath but this is the real tourist area of the City, I don’t think you see anybody without a camera or their phone. One of the shots I took there that I really like, and it just happens to be of a group of Asian women looking what can only be described as “Gobsmacked!”
Those expressions are priceless. It looks like the one ladies eyes are going to pop out of her head. I feel I should put a big smile here, as that is what I am doing as I type. People say your photography should stir emotions. This one does every time I look at it.
I enjoyed Bath so much I went back a couple of weeks later. The area around the Abbey was very similar, just the faces of the tourists were different, but with no Fringe Festival it was quieter in Kingsmead. I took myself off a different way and saw The Bath Bun, and made a post of the activity of the Tea Room. Just around the corner must be where all the little people live as I saw the sign on the right.
I couldn’t leave this reflection on Bath without posting this last shot. It just shows perfection and professionalism. Look at the waitress’ fingers. Sublime!
You can see so much more of my visit to Bath by clicking on the Bath link in the categories list on the left.
What did I learn from this period?
That the photography I am doing is good. Even if nobody else thinks it I don’t care, because I believe it.
With the above thought in mind, my confidence grew tremendously, and this reflected in the shots I was getting.
With the increased confidence, gave me more freedom. Less pressure and the shooting was flowing.
I was out shooting quite a few days a week, which meant I was practising and gaining so much experience.