balliol browsing by tag


Photo shoot: Georgina

Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013

Some shots from a photo shoot I had with Georgina a few months ago. Georgina had been rushing around organising things for the Balliol Commemoration Ball so I was glad when she managed to make some time to fit in this shoot a few days before the ball. This room was a tricky space to shoot in because of the height of the window and the amount of furniture in the room but I’m pleased with what I managed to achieve. I quite enjoy having to work to find images in less than ideal situations because it’s a great way to learn.

[Tech info:] Pentax 67 with 55mm and 105mm lenses, Kodak Portra 400VC and Tri-X films.

Oxford: Balliol 750th Commemoration Ball 2013 part 2

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013

At long last I have the shots I made on colour film at the Balliol 750th Commemoration Ball and I couldn’t be more pleased that I decided to send these out to a lab to have developed and scanned. This set of images is every frame from two rolls of film. I find it very exciting to send off rolls of film in the post and then patiently wait for them to return which is something that you only get with film. Despite these films being past their expiry date the colours have turned out beautifully – thank you Ag photo lab in Birmingham for doing such a great job. I bought a good sized batch of this film from a fashion photographer that used to use a lot of it but as his clients request digital photography now he had no need for it.

[Tech info:] Mamiya C330f, 80/2.8 lens, loaded with Kodak Portra VC, developed and scanned by Ag Photo lab.

Oxford: Balliol 750th Commemoration Ball 2013 part 1

Sunday, June 30th, 2013

Here are some of my images from the Balliol 750th Commemoration Ball that I made on medium format film. Once the sun had gone down I decided to switch to using only black & white film because I like how classic it looks – with lots of different coloured lights in the evening it can be quite distracting. The live acts in the second grid were King Charles (who were amazing) and Mark Ronson DJing. It was the first time I had photographed a live band with a twin lens reflex camera and although a bit of a challenge it was really good fun. With only 12 frames on a roll you really have to pick your moments carefully.

[Tech info:] Mamiya C330f, 80/2.8 lens, loaded with Kodak Tri-X 400 rated at ISO1600. Processed in Kodak HC110 1+31.

Oxford: Balliol 750th Commemoration Ball 2013 preview

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

Last week Balliol College held their 750th Commemoration Ball here in Oxford and I was there to photograph the event. The weather was a perfect summers evening with gorgeous light and as a photographer I couldn’t have asked for more. I believe there were somewhere around 1,200 guests in attendance so I kept busy the whole night. While there was still daylight I used colour film and after it got dark I switched to black & white. The colour images will be a while as I try to decide on whether to develop them myself or to send them out to a lab. I have a pile of colour films I need to develop which has been steadily growing over the past 5 months. I’m waiting to order the chemicals necessary to develop them because the 5L kit is good for 100 – 120 rolls and once you start to mix the chemistry it has a shortish shelf life.

So, here we have a little preview of some of my black & white shots from the evening. The 2012 Balliol Ball last year was the very first Oxford University ball I’ve ever attended and some of the images I made on film that night are my favourites from all of the ball’s I’ve attended so far. It was nice to see some familiar faces at this ball from last year and also to meet some visitors of this blog. Lots more film images still to come but I’ll be drip feeding them because I have so many to post.

[Tech info:] Mamiya C330f, 80/2.8 lens, loaded with Kodak Tri-X 400 rated at ISO1600. Processed in Kodak HC110 1+31.

Photo shoot: Balliol Style Suite (Fujiroids)

Sunday, May 12th, 2013

The Balliol 750th Anniversary Commemoration Ball is coming up next month and in preparation for that dress hire company Wish Want Wear brought a selection of dresses for students to try on. I went along to do some film photography in Balliol’s gardens and here are the shots I made on Fuji instant pack film (just like Polaroid). I’ll be one of the photographers at the ball next month and I’m really looking forward to it. The very first Oxford college ball I ever photographed at was Balliol’s last year, you can see some of my images here.

[Tech info:] Mamiya RB67, 90/3.5 lens, Fuji FP100-C instant pack film.

Oxford: Balliol Ball 2012 part 6

Sunday, April 1st, 2012

Here’s another batch of images from the Balliol college ball that I attended a few weeks ago. The images are very grainy due to the expired film I was using. I’m not sure of the expiry date of this film, it came in a batch of different films that I bought as a job lot. Despite the grain I like how these images have turned out, they capture the mood of the evening which was people having fun.

Some exciting news related to my Balliol ball photography is that a couple I photographed that evening liked my photography so much that they’ve booked me to photograph their wedding next year and I’m going to be doing it on film! It’s not obvious from this blog but I do photograph weddings as well as doing other photographic commissions and I’m really glad they emailed me to enquire about it. Here’s a little extract from the lovely email I received “…have been looking at the websites of wedding photographers around Oxford, and we haven’t found a single one whose work we like as much as the photographs on your blog.”

[Tech info:] Mamiya C330f camera and 80mm lens on expired Ilford Delta 3200 film, processed in Kodak HC110 dilution B (1:31).

Backlit in the live music marquee

Hai Lin and friend

Outside the live acts marquee

I really like the moment I've captured here, especially with the guy laughing next to the very serious guy next to him

Outisde the live acts marquee

I asked these girls to follow me all the way to the side entrance of the college just so we could use the light in the archway. It worked out well.

Oxford: Balliol Ball 2012 part 3

Thursday, March 8th, 2012

Here’s the third batch of my images from the Balliol Ball 2012 and they’re the best so far. I really like the look of these and that’s largely due to the film, Kodak Tri-X. I should give this film more credit in low light, most of these shots were made in light levels that were so low that I could hardly see the eyes of my subjects to focus on. Most of these images revolve around the live acts’ marquee because that seemed to have the most light. More images to come.

If you’re involved in organising any summer college balls and you like my photography please let me know. I’d love to do more documentary photography of other college balls.

[Tech info:] Mamiya C330f and 80mm lens loaded with Kodak Tri-X film rated at ISO1600, processed in Kodak HC110 B (1:31) for 17mins at 20C.

Fixing a bow tie (live acts marquee)

Watching one of the live bands

Outside the live acts' marquee

Outside the live acts' marquee

Outside the live acts' marquee

The lighting in this shot is coming from the live acts' stage. It was very noisy in the marquee which made asking people if I could photograph them a little tricky

This girl looked very striking with her tattoos. I'd like to photograph her again so if anyone knows her please let her know

mission burrito

I thought it was a great idea to have Mission Burrito at the ball. The people behind the counter were very friendly

Hai Lin. This portrait was made right next to the Mission Burrito stand to make use of their light

Oxford: Balliol Ball 2012 part 2

Wednesday, March 7th, 2012

These images are the first of what will be quite a large collection of images shot on film from the Balliol Ball that I was fortunate enough to attend last week. I didn’t label the rolls of film as I finished them on the night so when it came to choosing which roll of film to process first I decided to pick the last roll from the night.  The film (Ilford Delta 3200) expired in 2005 and was part of a batch that I recently bought on eBay. It’s always a gamble when buying expired film because you never really know how the film was stored or whether it has suffered heat damage. Judging by the quality of this film I’d say it has suffered from being badly stored over the years. Still, these images have a unique look to them that is 100% real, no Photoshop filters or plugins were used on these images.

Earlier this evening I processed another few rolls of film from the ball and I can’t wait to start scanning them in. I left them hanging up to dry in the darkroom and will collect them tomorrow.

[Tech info:] Mamiya C330f and 80mm lens loaded with Ilford Delta Pro 3200, processed in Ilford DD-X 1:4 at 20C for 9 mins.

One of the few places I found available light to photograph with was near the loo in the basement by the photo booth.

I found this group of people in the photo booth room and managed to convince them to stand in front of my camera.

Photo booth group. I like how this one turned out.

The lighting here reminded me of an old movie set. These two guys were watching the dodgem cars which are directly behind me.

The light level was so low here that I couldn't see these people clear enough in my viewfinder to focus and the exposure was a bit too long for me to hand hold steady.

The light level in this shot seems a bit brighter than the previous shot but it was still too low to focus properly.


Oxford: Balliol Ball 2012 part 1

Saturday, March 3rd, 2012

I was fortunate enough to be granted permission to do some roaming photography at the Balliol Ball yesterday and the most amazing part is that I only found out about the ball the day before when I saw dodgem cars being unloaded outside the college. I was walking past on my lunch hour street photography session and got chatting with some of the guys unloading the dodgems. It was a great evening that was a lot of fun and my thanks go to Omid for allowing me to attend. I’ve never been to an Oxford college ball and this one was a nice one to start with because not only do I have friends that studied at Balliol but I also photographed and designed their prospectus a number of years ago.

I’d love to photograph more Oxford college balls so if anyone out there is connected in any way and can give me permission to attend I’d really like to hear from you. Thanks.

The images below are from the digital camera that I took as a back up, the majority of my photography was all done on medium format and 35mm film which I haven’t processed yet. Those images will follow as soon as I process and scan the films next week.

Praying mantis style

live band on stage

Fist in the air

people watching a live band on stage

All of the lights. I like the mixture of formal outfits here and the girl on the left who isn't so formal.