Banbury streets

Messages
12,384
Name
Toni
Edit My Images
No
#1
So Banbury is a town that's trying to modernise with the castle quay and out of town shopping centres, huge new house building program etc, possibly with a jealous eye on Bicester's growth. But at heart it's still a post-industrial town, full of old red-brick buildings and empty shops, waiting for the boom that hasn't arrived. This should probably be a personal project, but these 3 will do for now.

Banbury streets - Boxing
by Toni Ertl, on Flickr

Banbury streets - waiting
by Toni Ertl, on Flickr

Banbury streets - Butchers Row
by Toni Ertl, on Flickr

C&C welcome.
 
Messages
14,147
Name
Nightmare
Edit My Images
No
#7
It's not to my taste but I get the idea. 3 is the best executed. Perhaps a figure or two in the distance would be good?
1 is OK. Top is perhaps too dark and too gritty but maybe this is what you were aiming for. Highlight on the very bottom needs to be cropped out.
2 is by far the weakest. The Ford just ruins it the way its cropped.
 
Messages
1,356
Name
Peter
Edit My Images
Yes
#10
As you have mentioned red bricks in your description perhaps one image in colour would be nice.
Of the 3 above I too like Butchers Row.
 
OP
OP
ancient_mariner
Messages
12,384
Name
Toni
Edit My Images
No
#11
As you have mentioned red bricks in your description perhaps one image in colour would be nice.
Of the 3 above I too like Butchers Row.
Thanks Peter. The reason I avoided colour is that it's hard to create the same kind of feel and tonal range - possibly a lack of skill on my part - to make a colour image have the grittiness I wanted.
 
Messages
3,367
Name
droj
Edit My Images
No
#14
It looks to me that you have a visual acuity, and a willingness to experiment, but tend to over-intellectualise rather than relax into feeling.

How does the viewer's eye engage with these images? What's its route of attention, and where does it rest? In all of them, there's an unsettlement. The skill and resolve are certain, but in each case here, as an image within a frame, the whole remains fragmented.

A good photograph has a wholeness, a containment, a rightness that transcends it being an obvious construction.

Look at great photographs from any era, and intuit their nature. And maybe stop trying too hard?

Sorry for the brutality, but I have shown you respect, haven't I?
 
Messages
3,997
Edit My Images
Yes
#15
What is it that you are wanting to achieve with your album of photos? Is it social documentary? If so, wouldn't colour work better than black and white for those shots? The tones of the old red brick, with their varying degrees of industrial and post-industrial 'patination' have been mostly lost to those black and white photos. Shoot in the right light and I'm sure the warmth of the old brick would make a good counterpoint to the cold feel of hiatus you've described.

It may well be down to personal taste, but I think the grainy black and white images above are perhaps falling between two stools, in that they neither seem to be recreating a historic 'period' look (with the possible exception of the first one) nor capture the current essence and feel of the town you've described.

As photos I like them, but I didn't really get much of a connection to the feel of the place you described by looking at them.
 
OP
OP
ancient_mariner
Messages
12,384
Name
Toni
Edit My Images
No
#18
It looks to me that you have a visual acuity, and a willingness to experiment, but tend to over-intellectualise rather than relax into feeling.

How does the viewer's eye engage with these images? What's its route of attention, and where does it rest? In all of them, there's an unsettlement. The skill and resolve are certain, but in each case here, as an image within a frame, the whole remains fragmented.

A good photograph has a wholeness, a containment, a rightness that transcends it being an obvious construction.

Look at great photographs from any era, and intuit their nature. And maybe stop trying too hard?

Sorry for the brutality, but I have shown you respect, haven't I?
You've shown me a lot of respect, and I really appreciate the time you invested commenting in the thread.

I'd wanted to show what I'd say was the unsettled view of Banbury - the crumbliness of the place, life going on but not necessarily well. At this stage I'm not sure I know how to make an image like this be at peace with itself while still feeling a bit vital and energetic. My natural inclination is to wander, spot something interesting and take the picture my mind saw in passing. Intentional documentary is taking some learning, and I very much appreciate the input.

What is it that you are wanting to achieve with your album of photos? Is it social documentary? If so, wouldn't colour work better than black and white for those shots? The tones of the old red brick, with their varying degrees of industrial and post-industrial 'patination' have been mostly lost to those black and white photos. Shoot in the right light and I'm sure the warmth of the old brick would make a good counterpoint to the cold feel of hiatus you've described.

It may well be down to personal taste, but I think the grainy black and white images above are perhaps falling between two stools, in that they neither seem to be recreating a historic 'period' look (with the possible exception of the first one) nor capture the current essence and feel of the town you've described.

As photos I like them, but I didn't really get much of a connection to the feel of the place you described by looking at them.
So the colour version of Butchers Row looks like this:
Butchers row (colour)
by Toni Ertl, on Flickr

For me, it doesn't really have the depth that the mono version has - yes, it's warmer, but just kind of ordinary.

And I thought it was grim up North!
For someone who grew up in London, this IS the north. ;)
 
Top