Wednesday, 23 November 2011

On a walk.

Went on a walk the other day around Duffryn and surrounding areas, including an industrial estate. I took this image of one of the buildings, as I really like the white sky and white building with the stark red line crossing it. Made me think a little of Edgar Martins due to the clinical feel and simple lines.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Allt-yr-yn Project

For my Final Major Project in my first year at University I did a project on the closure of one of the university campus', Allt-yr-yn (an area within Newport). I chose this because I wanted to document the last few months of it in use before it was sold to a housing company.
Before I first visited I already had in my head that I wanted to concentate on the people who work there, as the closure was going to concern them a lot. However, once I got to the campus it was the strange absence of people that struck me the most. What was once a bustling, noisy area full of staff and students was now a quiet, desolate place.
So for this reason I concentrated more on documenting the architecture that was soon to be demolished, and the packing up of all the stuff within the building, whether it was to be sold, moved or thrown away.
Here are a few images from the project. All were taken on a 6x6 Yashica Twin Lens.

All Images Copyright to Katrina Forey 2011

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

The Company Book

Recently we had a really good lecture from one of my tutors Paul Reas that included photographers who create company work books. Here are a few that were mentioned...

Josef Koudelka - Limestone. (2001)
This was a book made over two years for Lhoist Group who run qarries all over America and Europe. The book itself is large and very wide, allowing the panoramic photos to spread over two pages. The images are beautiful landscapes of the quarries and have quite a romantic feel to them. Here, nature has been transformed because of our consumeristic lives.

Bart Sorgedrager - Unilever (2008)

Sorgedrager actually came to Newport University last year as a guest lecture, so I feel I have quite an insight into this project. What's different about him compared to other photographers who have created company books, is that he approaches the company and asks to photograph their factory, usually because it's about to close. He then takes images of the staff at work, and a formal portrait of them and gives a copy of the book to each member of staff (all funded by the company).

His Unilever projects cover three factories in The Netherlands that were about to close down, each of them manufactoring different products and each getting a seperate book, although they do form part of a collection. What Sorgedrager does that is also quite different, is that he designs all of his own books, and when he is taking the image he knows how he wants it to look on a page. For example, he wanted a group shot of staff members from a particular factory, he knew he wanted the photo to spread over a double page, so he put objects in the center of the group so that no one would end up being in the gutter.

Brian Griffin - The Water People.
From what seemed like a dull commission by Reykjavik Energy to photograph their geothermal and hydroelectric plants in Iceland, turned into a wild story and journey into the heart of where The Water People come from. Griffin has always had a bit of a wacky side to him, but this book is simply magical. He creates a narrative in which he is travelling off to almost another planet, he sits in the 'meeting room' (the canteen) to be met by some of the crew who will take him underground to meet the strange, liquid life forms of The Water People. He photographs the landscape as if it is unknown territory and he photographs the people with either water dripping down their faces or layers of water over a glass screen causing a rippling effect, distorting them in odd ways.

Gursky in recent news

Andreas Gursky has been in the news this week for being the photographer of the most expensive photograph ever sold at auction.
His print 'Rhein II' was sold at Christies in New York for $4.3m (£2.7m). It is 1 in a series of 6, this one being the largest. One already hangs in the Museum of Modern Art in New York and another is in London's Tate Modern.
It shows the Rhine, europes longest river as it runs through Gursky's home town of Dosseldorf. The image was digitally manipuated to take away any impurities surrounding the river, like factories, people..etc.

Although I am a fan of Gursky and I do like this image, I'm not sure it's worth £2.7m! Despite this, I am glad to see that the value of photography is rising, it's still not worth as much as paintings can be, but it is on the up!

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Mark Power - A380 Project

I found these images a few years ago, but it was only recently that I found out they were taken by Mark Power, one of my current favourite photographers. Power was commissioned in 2002 by Airbus to cover the construction of the A380 and, because of its huge size, the construction of the infrastructure (the warehouses, factories and transport systems, including a specially built ship).
I think the A380 is an extraordinary feat of engineering, as the largest passenger plane in the world, it's a double-decker airliner that can transport up to 853 people in one trip. The first test flight was made in 2005 and was available for commercial service in 2007. These images show the incredible size of the aircraft and all the effort, labour and materials that have gone into its manufacture.
I realise that because Power was commissioned by Airbus the images are going to have a positive light to them, but I like to think that even if Power was undertaking this project out of his own interest the images would still look very similar. Personally, I find the photos tell a story from beginning to end, they document an important moment in history, and a milestone in technological advancement, as well as being incredible images.

All Images have been taken from Mark Powers website.

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Funny News

Although this was written in 2009, I found it recently and thought I would stick it on here as it made me laugh...

House for sale, with views of nuclear power station

It's a property that has everything: a fisherman's cottage a mere five minutes from the sea, with a private driveway, half an acre of garden and sweeping views across some of the most beautiful coastal landscape England has to offer.





It's just a shame the estate agents failed to mention that it was in the shadow – quite literally – of one of Europe's biggest nuclear power stations.
Westbeach, on sale for £247,000 is a small three-bed bungalow that is less than 80 yards from the perimeter of the brooding, concrete presence of Dungeness A and Dungeness B power stations.
The stations, which emit a ghostly hum day and night, are so close a strong-armed fielder could hurl a cricket ball over its fence if they were standing in the property's garden.
However, this rather major downside is being ignored by the estate agents, who have managed to focus purely on its bijou charm. It is being marketed as "a property not to be missed," with a light-filled sitting room, complete with original 1930s wood panelling, a modern kitchen, including an all-important island.
There is an extensive picture gallery on the website of Kent estate agent Geering & Colyer highlighting the property's features, but the only exterior shot shows the property from the side – missing the power station, and only displaying the beautiful Romney Marsh.

A spokesman for Geering and Colyer based in nearby New Romney said: "The thing is that anywhere on Dungeness is close to the power station.
"Dungeness is a place you either love or you hate and the power station is just part of that.
"Anyone who wants to know the location of any property in relation to it can just go on to Google Earth and see for themselves."
One viewer to the property, which has been on the market since the summer, had failed to do this level of research.
Alex Robertson, looking for a property for his two children and family, said he was horrified when he arrived at the cottage last week.
He said: "It was unbelievable. I had seen the property online and thought it looked just right for me and my family.
"But when I got there I just saw this tiny fisherman's cottage in the shadow of these huge nuclear power stations.
"The photos make out it is an isolated cottage with nothing surrounding it at all – but that could not be further from the truth.
"These power stations are literally at your front door – there is no escaping them, they are gargantuan."
Dungeness, which is sited on the largest stretch of shingle beach in Europe, has a stark beauty that has attracted many visitors since it started as a holiday resort in the 1920s. Most famously the late film maker Derek Jarman, moved to a similar sized property, Prospect Cottage, to spend his final years.
His garden, constructed from local driftwood and windswept grasses, lavenders and poppies is considered one of the finest of its type by gardeners.
However, his cottage is more than a mile than from the power stations, which appear in the background of any picture, rather than dominating the foreground.

The selling points:
Detached Fisherman's Cottage set in approx. half an acre, Dungeness National Nature Reserve
Price: £247,000
Bedrooms: 3. Master bedroom includes double glazed window to the rear, built-in wardrobes and fireplace
Kitchen: 11 foot by 11 foot, central island with gas hob and wine rack
Conservatory: 11 foot by 9 foot, with double glazin and door to dining room


Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Pylon Appreciation

Recently I joined the Pylon Appreciation Society due to my love of the great structures that cover our landscape. We see them almost everyday and I often feel people take them for granted and more than often I find people have a distinct dislike of them as they tend to impact a lot on our idyllic British landscapes. However, I feel that as they need to be there and because we are basically stuck with them we should appreciate them more. Personally I enjoy the way they frame our landscapes and how they remind us of how far we have come as a civilisation.
To celebrate them I would like to show a selection of my favorite images.

Charlie Meecham  - taken from the project The Oldham Road, about the road running between Manchester and Oldham, taken between 1986-88.

Mark Power - taken from his project 26 Different Endings, which is a collection of images all taken at the edge of the map in the A-Z London Street Atlas taken with his back to London; these were the places that didn't get included.

Simon Roberts - taken from the We English project, a personal project about what he sees as being typically English pastimes and his own memories of holidays in England. This one was taken at Radcliffe-on-Soar Power Station which is the one I live very near to, although I never knew it had a staff golf course!

Nigel Green - Taken from his book Dungeness (sorry for the bad scans!) about the Dungeness Nuclear Power Plant in Kent. Will be posting more picture from the book in a later post as I highly recommend it. (Just waiting for my copy to arrive!). The first two images are from the main section in the book, and next five are part of his Fragment images that are in the back of the book, which he says are made
by "exploiting the fugitive nature of the chemical silver print process.".

Stephen Hughes - Scan taken from his book 'Photographs' of his images taken between 1996-2000. "The photographs are sited in a limbo between worlds and are somehow adrift from reality - shorelines, building sites, juxtapositions where urban meets rural, where buildings are homogeneous and landscape anaesthetised"

Peter Goin - Taken from his book  Nuclear Landscapes, in which he looked at the landscapes where the nuclear testing had occured shortly after the second world war. (Very subtle pylons in this one!)

John Davies - Taken from the book Cross Currents which is a collection of his best landscapes both rural and industrial from various countries that were in the European Union in 1992.

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Britain from Above

For those of you who never saw the series on BBC Two, I highly recommend 'Britain from Above'. It was a very interesting documentary show talking about various aspects of Britain, incuding industy, land, transport and cities. It looks at how our country has changed over the years, our consumer lifestyles and the way we live.
The first episode is called The Industrial Landscape and is "The story of how Britain's industrial heartlands have been transformed in the space of a single lifetime.
In 1939, the Luftwaffe secretly photographed the backbone of the British economy: the valleys of South Wales where the great coalfields powered the nation; Swindon, at the heart of Britain's railway network; and Manchester, home to the great port of Salford and the world's largest industrial estate Trafford Park." (Taken from the BBC website)

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

The Beginning

So lets start with some of my favourite, well known industrial photographers (when I say industrial photographers I mean photographers who have specialised in industrial work at some point in their career, not just industry alone)...

Andreas Gursky;

Taken from the Matthew Marks Gallery 
'Andreas Gursky's large-scale color photographs of landscapes, buildings, and masses of people have been likened to paintings. Gursky studied with Bernd and Hilla Becher at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf in the 1980s, where he honed his fascination with the ways people live in the world and how their existence impacts their surroundings. In the early 1990s he began using digital tools to heighten formal elements and circumvent the limits of perspective in his pictures.'

I love the section that says "he honed his fascination with the ways people live in the world and how their existence impacts their surroundings.". A great quote that sums up a lot of my own feelings.

...On to the images!

Montparnasse, 1993

99 Cent, 1999

Siemens, Karlsruhe, 1991

As you can see his images are very busy, there's a lot going on. I enjoy this as it means I can stare at his images over and over and see something new everytime. Many people say it hurts their eyes, got an opinion?

My all time favourite industrial photographer;

Edward Burtynsky

Taken from his own website:
'Nature transformed through industry is a predominant theme in my work. I set course to intersect with a contemporary view of the great ages of man; from stone, to minerals, oil, transportation, silicon, and so on. To make these ideas visible I search for subjects that are rich in detail and scale yet open in their meaning. Recycling yards, mine tailings, quarries and refineries are all places that are outside of our normal experience, yet we partake of their output on a daily basis.'

Again, a wonderful quote there about how we don't see whats going on, yet we are consumers of the output on an everyday scale.

It was really hard to select which images to upload (I've just spent about an hour on his website!). I'm a serious fan of this man, every image I love. As Roland Bathes would say, they're all studiums to me and they all contain a punctum! 

Again they're quite busy like those taken by Gursky, however I find that Burtynsky creates a true beauty within his photographs even when they've been taken on a really gloomy day. The amount of detail is astonishing and again I could stare at them for hours. For anyone that reads this and hasn't heard of Burtynsky I really recommend going onto his website and having a browse through all the images. Tell me what you think!

Now something slightly different...

John Davis

Taken from The Michael Hoppen Gallery 

'To view the landscape as a pictorial composition of elements is simplistic. To perceive the landscape within a set of rules (art, science, politics, religion, community, business, industry, sport and leisure) is a way people can deal with the complexity of meanings that are presented in our environment. We are collectively responsible for shaping the landscape we occupy and in turn the landscape shapes us whether we are aware of it or not. - John Davies'

Again, Davies is talking about how we, as humans, change the landscape around us and how we have such a profound affect on the world. However, Davies has a very different style to his images compared to Gursky and Burtynsky. Most of his work is in black and white and set around his hometown of Liverpool. He tends to take his images from afar and they include a lot of the surrounding landscape. (Probably has a lot less issues with getting access!)

Trawsfynydd Nuclear Power Station, Snowdonia, 1994

Agecroft Power Station, Salford, 1983

Victoria Promenade, Widnes, 1986

I think that a lot of people would say these images by John Davies are much more pleasant to look at compared to the previous photographers. I agree that they are easier on the eye and I do find a certain beauty to them, however they're not the type of images that I could spend a lot of time looking at and there just isn't that level of detail that I enjoy so much. 

Anyway.. that's all for now! I will be adding more photographers soon and hopefully something on my own current project! 

My First Blog

Hello online world!

This is the start of my first ever blog, I'm pretty excited but lets see how it goes for now!

My aim is to concentrate on industrial photography i.e ports, power stations, transport, materials, machinery..etc. General industry stuff!
Why? Because it's an interest of mine. I love to see the stuff behind the scenes; how stuff is made, how things are transported, where stuff comes from and what we do with it.

So on with the show...