Articles Tagged with: blogging101

THE ETERNAL PARADE: STREET STYLES 1

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The Eternal Parade: Street Styles


This is the first post in an ongoing series indulging my fascination for the individual statements people make through the clothes they wear and the street styles, trends, and movements they are part of.

You wouldn’t know it to look at me now, but in my time I’ve been a 2-Tone Rude Boy in sta-press trousers and pork-pie hat dancing my teenage way through The Specials (spot them in one of the pics above), The Selector and Madness. A Smiths-era Morrissey clone (sans daffodil in back pocket). A polo-necked uber-beatnik complete with beard (before they were trendy). And a dread-locked festival-goer seeking sun, sea and surf as the 20th Century turned into the 21st.

And, no you’re not getting photographic evidence. A man has to preserve some sense of dignity without social media feasting on his fashion triumphs and tragedies!

Perhaps it’s being half-Italian or simply having lived through some of the great fashion/music/culture convergences of the late 20th Century, but I have always loved style and fashion. Especially that as expressed ‘on the streets’: the everyday offerings of individuality, sexuality, allegiances, and cultural signs that people wear to say ‘this is me’.

The 21st Century has broken down the boundaries of fashion. Just taking a walk along a city street can throw up cyber-Goths alongside skaters alongside couture divas alongside brand junkies or all of the above mixed in to something utterly new. Doesn’t matter. It just is. It is a never-ending parade. And it’s enthralling.

Well to me anyway.

It’s not an original idea I know, and has been done very beautifully elsewhere by people like The Sartorialist, but from time to time I’m going to photographically celebrate individuals who are making their own contribution to style, culture and street life.

It might be a haircut, a unique item of clothing, or a whole look. I don’t know until I see it.

I’m beginning here with a random selection of images taken in various locations without really knowing that they might become part of a series.

Top: Soho Hipster – Berwick Street, London.
Bottom: Festival Goers – Sonisphere Festival 2014; Punks – Venice Beach, California.

All images © James Bellorini


WORLD PHOTOGRAPHY DAY PLEDGES

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A TONGUE-IN-CHEEK LIST OF PHOTOGRAPHIC PLEDGES.


I pledge my allegiance to the camera – though don’t try to make me a single-system patriot. May I be free to be a photographic Don Juan and use Canon, Leica, Fuji and Mamiya and/or whatever else comes to hand depending on the requirements of my work or my creative promptings.

I pledge my allegiance to both digital photography and old-school analogue photography – may they both remind me that light is my master and guide.

I pledge to always be reminded that a camera is an object of great wonder and joy to me – that it is an incredible tool that has the power to change our perception of the world, the way we look at it, and the people we meet.

I pledge my allegiance to photography as a medium – that it makes me who I am; and that as an introvert when I have a camera in my hand I have a reason to meet, talk, and engage.

I pledge my allegiance to ‘the moment’.

I pledge my allegiance to the power of photography to freeze time and literally make history.

I pledge my allegiance to photography being the most democratic of mediums  – that anyone can take pictures and enjoy it.

I pledge to honor that democracy by being as open to the world as possible. That I greet it and the people I meet without prejudice or preconception.

I pledge my allegiance to knowing that light is my teacher; and that form and matter my subject.

I pledge to abide by the formula: open mind + open heart + open eyes = photographer.

I pledge to learn the inverse square law by heart and to actually understand it practically (apologies for the photo jargon – an explanation for the layperson here).

I pledge my allegiance to people and diversity: all that richness of life, culture and visual information.

I pledge to continue working harder than I ever thought possible before I started working as a full-time photographer.

I pledge to daily ignore my G.A.S. or Gear Acquisition Syndrome (sorry more jargon – more explanation here).

I pledge to never stop learning about this wondrous, frustrating, inspirational and obsessive craft.

I pledge to always have a camera of some kind on me wherever and whenever I am.

I pledge to honor the clients who have seen fit to believe enough in me to keep coming back. And I pledge to honor those I haven’t even met yet.

I pledge to say thank you to all those close enough to me that they have to put up with all the tears of joy and sorrow that being a professional photographer makes me shed.

And finally, I’m proud to say I’m a photographer and a world citizen. I can’t help it, they’re in my blood.

All images © James Bellorini 2015. All rights reserved.

James is an editorial and documentary photographer working for the commercial and consumer markets. He started shooting professionally in 2013 and has since worked with advertising agencies, design agencies, entrepreneurs, performers, musicians, DJ’s, singers, models, and culture and entertainment organizations/brands. Recent clients include: Innovision, UKTI, Siren Design, Glyndebourne Productions Ltd, Stone Nest, The Old Vic etc. 

 


SMALL ACTS OF REBELLION

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ANALOGUE PHOTOGRAPHY & HOW IT HELPS ME CONNECT.


Style. Beauty. Authenticity. The unexpected.

If I’m not playing with at least one of those things in my photography and/or business at least once a week then I get jittery. Seriously. And I’m not talking something like coffee jitters, you know. It’s worse. Like a chunk has been taken out of my soul.

When that happens I need to shake the shackles off and make a stance for my creativity. That’s the way I keep going. So I find ways to experience one or more of those elements I’ve listed above through small acts of rebellion (SARs).

Take this little bunch of pics here. All shot over a month ago on a camera that uses FILM. Remember that stuff?

I think of analogue photography and the photos themselves as SARs.

Why?

Well the image/outcome can’t be the only thing I’m focused on, even though it does take up a huge part of  my attention. It’s the process as well. It has to be. It can’t be product product product all the time. Like the old adage says it’s not the destination, but the journey that’s important. For me, it’s taken a bit of time to understand that.

Which is also happens to be part of my point.

Time. Patience. Slowing down a bit. Breaking out from the digital treadmill. It runs against the grain these days. We’re often made fearful that we might ‘miss’ something or not be cutting edge enough if we haven’t for example sprung something new on social media in the last hour.

It makes sense to my creativity to throw into my photographic mix the discipline of slowness when I need it. Taking my foot off the photographic pedal. Allowing a whole month from the shutter-press to the point of editing and publishing personal photos (good or bad) is a small act of rebellion.

And what does that rebellion lead to? Fruit. Maybe not always immediate or ‘commercial’ fruit. But other kinds. In this here picture-monger it creates excitement, inner space and a greater awareness of the world around me and what I’m doing in it. Which photographically and creatively has to be a good thing.

And in this case there is also the greater appreciation of the medium itself: film, film cameras and all things analogue photography. Go get an old camera and walk out with it. It’s amazing how many conversations start because of this old contraption slung over my shoulder.

Then there’s the film ‘X’ factor.

Maybe you can’t see it in the pictures. I hope you can. Maybe it’s so sublime as to be like a breath of wind across the back of your hand. There is a depth and richness that comes from film (I want to say the word like I might say “ice cream” – playing it round my mouth, tasting it). The images are that much more sensual than the digital equivalent.

I’m often battling on the front between two forces: creativity and commerce. When they’ve signed their peace treaty and are working hand in hand that’s an amazing place to be. More often than not though, they are dividing their territories and building defences. Slowing down in this way actually helps them both come to terms with each other. Plus I have time to learn more about myself and my craft which soothes the creative beast in me and at the same time provides fuel for better photos (my products) for clients.

The business of making and creating is often conducted through a ‘cloud of unknowing’. Walking blindly in the cerebral dark guided by a tiny whisper of light in the guts, with limited conscious understanding of where you’re going. Yet knowing that you have to go, whatever. It’s the kind of place that, like a rebellion, lacks a sense of control. A place I’m hoping will always be a frontier of change.

If you’re interested, my ‘museum pieces’ are a Mamiya C220 TLR with 80mm lens and a Mamiya 7 with a 65mm lens. They help keep me sane.

I think of all of this a bit like this song by Parov Stelar – it’s kind of old and yet at the same time it very much of today as well. Have a listen and you’ll see what I mean.

All photography © James Bellorini 2015. All rights reserved.

James is an editorial and documentary photographer working for the commercial and consumer markets. He started shooting professionally in 2013 and has since worked with advertising agencies, design agencies, entrepreneurs, performers, musicians, DJ’s, singers, models, and culture and entertainment organizations/brands. Recent clients include: Innovision, UKTI, Siren Design, Glyndebourne Productions Ltd, Stone Nest, The Old Vic etc.


HELLO WORLD: BLOG INTRODUCTION

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A ‘HELLO’ POST FOR THOSE THAT DON’T KNOW ME. 


So, hi.
 
I’m Jamie. Or James.
 
The images at the top of this post might help you guess that I’m a commercial and editorial photographer.

I shoot people. A lot. Not literally of course.

I also shoot food, lifestyle imagery, music and entertainment photography.

But, I guess that’s not all I am. Underneath the ‘job description’ is someone who has, for most of his life, been creatively driven. I’ve always believed in the pursuit of self-expression: tapping into the human experience and making things. Photos, collages, music, food, a mean tiramisu even!!
 
At college I trained as a fine artist and photographer. And when I struck out from there it was in interior design photography. However, my adult life took me along a number of different paths that didn’t directly relate to my training but which had creativity (in some form) at the centre.
 
But throughout my journey along various avenues of life, the one thread I’ve been drawn back to time and time again is visual creation. Perhaps it’s because I think visually.
 
After a life-changing experience (that’s another story), in May 2013 I changed the focus of my career. I returned to what I’d learned when I was younger and the subject that inspired and excited me most: photography. I embraced the challenge of exploring the new digital landscape and began turning that into a career. I’m just over two full years into that journey, still at start-up stage, but with an ever-expanding list of clients and commissions that include design agencies, national brands and some amazing individuals.
 
Challenge has always been one of my main motivators. I respond best when I’m being stretched in some way and have to step out of my comfort zone. If I get too familiar with one aspect of my work/creativity then it’s time to explore something else. Not at the expense of what I’m doing but in addition to it. I want to keep growing. To keep learning. I never want to become stale. It’s a challenge I acknowledge in photography AND with blogging.
 
So, what’s my blog about?
 
It’s a place to reflect on and investigate the challenges of being creative and in business.

It’s about images, of course. Recent work from client shoots. Archive photos. Experiments. And more.

It’s about what I’ve delivered for past clients and what I can offer potential clients as a photographer AND person. My skills. My eye. Strengths. My quirks.

Occasionally it’s about cameras because, well, you know, I love them. I can’t help myself. They’ve been in my life for so long.

It’s about my direct experiences as a creative and as a business start-up.

And it’s about the things that inspire me: style, music, films, the streets, people.

Hopefully something in it will provide some value to you the reader/visitor enough to want to check in again from time to time. I’d like that. Above all else, that is what I would measure the success of my blog by.

After all being creative is about communication, so if I can say something with my blog (and my work) that speaks to someone else then that is the best ‘hello’ of all.

All images © James Bellorini. All Rights Reserved.

James is an editorial and documentary photographer working for the commercial and consumer markets. He started shooting professionally in 2013 and has since worked with advertising agencies, design agencies, entrepreneurs, performers, musicians, DJ’s, singers, models, and culture and entertainment organizations/brands. Recent clients include: Innovision, UKTI, Siren Design, Glyndebourne Productions Ltd, Stone Nest, The Old Vic etc.