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Oxford: Suited up

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

These guys need no introduction as they feature fairly regularly on my blog, Clements & Church, the Oxford tailors. They’re some of the sharpest dressed guys in Oxford and as I pass their shop on Little Clarendon Street during my lunch time photo walk to and from town I tend to stop by there to shoot a bit of film with whatever camera I happen to have on me at the time. They’re always friendly, generous with their time and happy to chat so if you’re ever passing that way pop in and tell them you saw them on my blog.

[Tech info:] Nikon FM2, 50/1.4D lens, loaded with Fuji Press 400 film (expired). Dev & scan by ASDA Swindon. (Thanks Simon for your speedy service).

oxford tailors

Oxford: lunch hour session

Monday, April 16th, 2012

Something a little different from my usual lunch hour sessions here because I don’t usually go to the pub at lunch time. A meeting I had at work ended up running over by almost an hour which meant my lunch break was later. I took this opportunity to break from my usual routine of walking into town and instead I explored the neighbourhood around where I work. The benefit of this was I had a lot more time to shoot because usually I only get 30mins to shoot as my walk into town and back is 15mins each way. The relaxed change of pace was nice and as it was a sunny day with a clear sky the light was very harsh and contrasty which resulted in great shadows around. ┬áThe following day I was back to my old routine again but I think I might mix things up a bit from now on.

[Tech info:] Mamiya C330f and 80mm lens loaded with Fomapan 200, processed in Rodinal 1:50 for 11mins at 20c.

Concrete staircase

Stairway to...

Tree shadow

I love this shadow

The Rickety Press pub interior

On my travels I ended up going inside The Rickety Press pub which was recently renovated. The light and shadows inside were fantastic.

old books

Old books on display and for reading.

old book spines

I liked the ornate spines on these books.

classic old penguin books

Penguin classics behind the bar.


Back to work.

radcliffe square oxford

Day 2. 'Cool camera' they said as I walked past. 'Thanks' I said, 'let me make a quick portrait of you with it'. Click!

Outside Brasenose College where some construction work is going on.

I thought the 3D glasses were cool and the contrast of outfits. On the steps of the Clarendon Building.

A men's tailoring shop recently opened in Little Clarendon Street and this is one of the tailor's working there.

Lunch hour session: Oxford

Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

It’s been while since I posted some lunch hour street photography so I apologise if you’ve been needing your fix. There’s no shortage of it to post (as I’m out with a camera just about every weekday if it’s not raining) it’s just that I wanted to get the bulk of my Balliol College Ball photography posted. Speaking of College Balls, I’m going to try to obtain permission to photograph some more this summer so fingers crossed on that. If you know anyone that can authorise permission please send them a link to this blog and ask them to contact me. Thanks.

All of the images here are from the same roll of expired Tri-X. I don’t know how expired it was because there was no wrapper on it but judging from the base fog of the film I’d say it’s over 10 years out of date.

[Tech info:] Expired Kodak Tri-X film loaded in a Mamiya C330f with 80mm lens. The film was rated at ISO 200 and processed in Kodak HC110 dilution b.

This guy was visiting Oxford for the day. We had a pleasant conversation about photography, film and digital. He had travelled from Ohio.

This scout was visiting from British Columbia, Canada.

Creative graffiti on a red telephone box on St Giles.

Construction work going on inside the Bodleian Library. The openings on the right will be the new entrances.

This bike was all chrome.

A shady spot underneath the scaffolding on Walton Street

This seat has had a lot of use. The bike it's on is nice and old but it's had a recent paint job which is a bit of a shame

It's a bit of a shame I didn't have colour film in the camera because the colour scheme of this guy's outfit was pretty cool. I like the shadows cast by the sun.

Lunch hour session: Oxford

Sunday, February 19th, 2012

It feels like ages since I did any street portraits so getting back into it this week has given me a real buzz. The weather in January was really bad so I didn’t get many opportunities to do much street photography. The shots here are all from the same roll of film shot during the past two days which makes them the fastest turned around images (from my camera to this blog) so far. The film I used is one of my favourites (Fuji Acros 100) but for this roll I decided to test out a developer that I haven’t used with this film before (Kodak HC110). I was a bit nervous because I had shots that I was very excited about and didn’t want to lose but nothing ventured nothing gained as they say. I’m pleased to say that it all worked out well and I’m very happy with this film/developer combo.

[Tech info:] Mamiya M645 and 80mm/f1.9 lens loaded with Fuji Acros 100 film. Processed in Kodak HC110 dilution B for 5mins at 20c.

I love the outfits this couple are wearing (I think they're a couple) and I hope I get to photograph them again.

I photographed this smartly dressed gentleman last summer on Cornmarket Street and when I saw him walking towards me on Turl Street I had to photograph him again.
security guard

One of the security guards where I work.

There's something very classic about the way this gentleman is dressed with his wax cotton coat and scarf. As he came walking towards me I had the feeling that he wouldn't want to be photographed but I was happy to be wrong.

On the steps of the Clarendon Building. The first time I passed this guy he was eating some lunch so I decided not to interrupt him. By the time I'd done a circuit of my usual haunts he had finished. Funnily enough someone else had asked to photograph him the other day.

builders taking a break

These builders are working on the Walton Street site at the corner of Little Clarendon Street. When i approached them they didn't want to be photographed but after I explained my street photography project they were happy to. I think there's something about using a film camera that shows people you're serious about photography in a way that digital cameras don't.

photographer holding a leica camera

I think this camera is a Leica. All of the logo's have been covered in black tape. It reminds me of what I did with my first Nikon SLR to prevent it from attracting attention.

Street portraits: paper negatives

Thursday, January 26th, 2012

Yesterday I took my Speed Graphic 5×4 camera out to do some paper negative tests. There was no light for photography because the sky was heavily overcast and there was a threat of rain in the air. I was determined to make some exposures to see how the paper negatives would cope in such horrible conditions. The Speed Graphic always seems to attract attention and this occasion was no exception. I’m not surprised because it’s not every day you see someone out and about using a camera from the 1940’s.

It didn’t take too long before I found willing subjects to stand still for me. The exposure times for these was 3 seconds. The stone on the walls and the floor was a lot lighter than the dark clothing so I had to sacrifice it in the exposure. I was excited to scan these and did so in a hurry so perhaps with more time I might be able to get some more detail from these shots because there is more detail in the original paper negatives.

[Tech info]: Speed Graphic 5×4 with 203mm Ektar lens. Ilford multigrade glossy rc paper with a grade 2 filter on the camera lens.

This gentleman was very calm. When I asked him to stand very still he asked if I meant motionless. I like that word.

This guy was a cool character. He was only in Oxford for the day and was looking for interesting places to visit.

Lunch hour session: Oxford

Sunday, December 11th, 2011

The weather hasn’t been particularly great for photography recently. These shots are from a couple of weeks ago. A lot of the University students have packed up and are away for the Christmas holidays so the streets I usually photograph on in town are noticeably quieter. This might mean less photography for me but in some ways that’s not a bad thing because I still have a huge backlog of film to scan from earlier in the summer. If you’re one of the people that I photographed and you’ve been visiting this blog to see your picture I apologise for the delay. There have been some unfortunate accidents that happened where I lost some images (either by the film running out in my camera without me realising it or a mistake I made in the darkroom where I ended up with two completely blank rolls of film) but fortunately that only happened on a few occasions.

It would be nice to see some comments so please feel free to leave one. I’d especially like to hear from people that feature in my pictures. Thanks.

[Tech info:] Mamiya C330f with Kodak Portra 400 film.

Man with a flat cap

Marco, Broad street. A really pleasant guy that I enjoyed speaking about photography with.

I really liked this students' outfit and ended up chasing after her. I'm amazed at how well this has turned out considering the lack of light, I could hardly focus it was so dark.

Maria. This was shot in colour but I prefer this black & white version. Again, it was very dark and cold on this day but film renders everything so nicely.

Tourists eating lunch

Tourists eating lunch on the Martyr's memorial.


Some of the demolition crew that are working on the shops along Walton Street. This is the corner of Walton Street and Little Clarendon Street. Notice one of the guys is hiding.

London day trip: Nov/2011 part 2

Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

Here’s the second batch of images from my day trip to London on 19th November 2011. Quite a few of these images centre around a used book market that I came across on my walk along the Thames from Westminster bridge to Tate Modern. I’m not sure which bridge this was under but the light was fantastic. I made some candid shots which is very unusual for me because I prefer to ask people’s permission and have eye contact with the camera but a lot of people were so engaged with browsing the books that I found it very photogenic.

[Tech info:] Mamiya C330f camera with Kodak Tri-X 400 film. Processed in Ilford DD-X (1+4) for 8mins, 20c.

cool looking guy with Ray Ban sunglasses

Listen all y'all it's a sabotage. This guy looked so cool and reminded me of the Beastie Boys music video for Sabotage.

A man browsing for books

Book browsing. I like the retro look of this guy.

Looking at a book cover

Don't judge a book by its cover.

This guy approached me to ask about the camera I was using. He's a film director studying 3D movie making and he wondered whether I was using a 3D camera because of the twin lenses. We had a great conversation about stereography and movie making. A very cool guy.

Books for sale

Books for sale.

The previous frame on the roll to this was a candid shot I made of this couple looking at poetry books but after they saw my twin lens reflex camera we got chatting about it and I decided to make a more regular portrait of them. They were a lovely couple and after I made this shot Adrian offered to make one of me (see below).

A portrait of me made by Adrian (above). Not quite in focus but a gallant first time effort with a strange camera :-)


Street cool: Oxford

Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

I like this image so much that I think it deserves a post all by itself. How cool does this guy look? This was on Broad Street, Oxford. Hopefully I’ll get to photograph him again with some other cameras.

[Tech info]: Pentax 67, 105/2.4 with Tri-X @ 200, processed in Rodinal 1:50 for 9 mins, 20C.

Smartly dressed man

Sharp dressed man.

Oxford: Street style

Wednesday, July 13th, 2011


Sometimes you’ll find a lot of contrast between people on the streets of Oxford. These three images illustrate that quite well. During my lunch hours when I’m in town looking for visually interesting people to photograph there tends to be three category’s that the majority of people fall into; students, people that work in the city and tourists. It’s the summer holidays for Oxford university students at the moment and the city centre is overflowing with tourists. Hopefully there will be lots more street style to be found during the rest of this summer.

A well dressed tourist

A well dressed tourist

A cool looking student

A cool looking student

hip looking student

Very street

Oxford: lunch hour session

Monday, June 6th, 2011

Here’s a set of images made on the same roll of film during one of my lunch hours. I’ve been experiencing some problems with the wind on in my Pentax 6×7 medium format camera which has meant that the frame counter tells me I have a few shots left to use when in fact the film has run out. This has meant that I’ve lost images that I thought I had made so if you’re one of the people that I photographed and told to visit this blog I’m very sorry that your image didn’t come out. No one is more disappointed than I am about it especially as I had the camera serviced at the end of April. I’m going to post it back to the repair company tomorrow morning to have it looked at.

Last week was the Summer Eights rowing competition here in Oxford and I have lots of rolls of film still to develop from that but unfortunately I lost quite a few great shots during that time as well. I won’t know the full extent of the loss until I’ve developed all of the film so stay tuned.
[Tech info]: Pentax 6×7, 135mm.

Frills and platforms outfit

Frills and platforms (Catte street)

Rugged looking man wearing glasses

The rugged look (Broad street)

Leather bags in shop window

Leather bags in shop window (Ship street)

Annabelinda shop front

Annabelinda shop front

London: street portraits

Monday, May 30th, 2011

Here are some street portraits I made during a recent day trip to London. These were from the same day as the ‘London calling’ set but I had to wait to receive the colour film from the lab, hence the delay. I must admit it’s very exciting to receive an envelope of negatives in the post from the lab because up until that point I’m never completely sure what might be on the film. Even after I get my first look as I hold the film strips up against the nearest source of light, I still don’t get to see the images properly until I start to scan them in. As the images appear on my screen for the first time I get the same buzz as when I used to watch a b&w print appear in the developer tray in my darkroom days, many years ago. Looking at an image on an LCD screen on the back of my digital cameras just doesn’t give me the same buzz. Convenient? Yes. Exciting? No.


Somewhere in Soho

A smartly dressed man on a London street

Smart dressed man

A man standing in a London park

Park life

Couple standing on a London street

This lady told me that she studied at Oxford. Small world!

Cyclist standing with his bike on a London street

Nice wheels

Man wearing suit, red tie and sunglasses

Sharp dressed man

Street portraits: May morning

Sunday, May 1st, 2011