Saturday, January 31, 2009

Strange gift!

A gift shop near the Royal Festival Hall, all prepared for the Valentine day in the entrance, but discrete, in the vitrine I suddenly see this object;

First, it make me afraid.

Then I read "wodoo" ? What it is for?

To think and try to make suffer lovers who betrayed you? Or to make them think of you? A lot of things suddenly arrive in my mine.

I have no one to send a Valentine card or give a gift, not even try to hurt an old beloved who was not true to what I believed of him. Until I did believe, until I could, it made me happy. Some of it was real probably, the rest only in my mind.

I am still happy when I see people holding hands or looking for gifts to offer.
Soon Valentine day: remember!
I look at them, smile and say to myself: even if not for me, now, love still exists!

Friday, January 30, 2009

André Kertész

André Kertész, a Hungarian born photographer, arrived in Paris in 1926, and became famous, for reason. I love his photography and his approach not only to the celebrities of his time with whom he become friend, but very humble simple peasants with whom he had a wonderful contact too.

He also showed how simple objects can be great subjects.

When I suddenly seen this fork's shadow on the table yesterday, my first thought was of his famous fork on the plate. Then, I put my vine glass near it and took some other photos.
Shadows-8 picnik variation
Still work to do on them, but sometimes even still life can be interesting, I think, even as I prefer still people.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

New bookshelf at home

The watch is old, found in a dime store, but I love it so much! And in the middle of the night when I wake up, I hear its tic tac even if I do not see what hour it is.

Under it, an old calendar with my photos, a book fairly recent with flickr favorited photos from me also and a book Budapest bought there, a while ago that made me try explore other cities and write small comments about them. I did not yet arrive at the wonderful texts as that small book, but at least I try.

The salt and pepper figures are from Paris, the book about London from the web, and the small house is my latest acquisition: who can now tell that I do not own a house? I have one, and even here it is its prove!

Where ever I'll be in a few month I do not know yet, but I already have a house even if it is to tiny to live in it!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Woman policeman on horse

I am sure there are jobs, although opened to anyone, but not easy for some. Not so easy to drive a train or be a policewoman on horse.

I was happy to be able to take a picture of her, more than that of Queen's guards. I did see white, black or yellow guards even, but not women guards while looking of the Change of Guards! I have to admit, I was to far away to really see something really well, so, who knows...

Not only I was happy to take a picture of her, but she stopped a bit from her work to pose and was happy that I took her and told her why; too.

I do believe I do an important work: although giving people something, not only taking from them.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Australia Day

There are some unforgettable pictures I have discovered on internet, this one is one of them, uploaded by rich115 on Australia Day, today.

Happy expecting mother, shining with love and contentment.

Of course, we can experiment, do different images, but those few, remain forever.

And not only for them, family, but even for us, speaking a ton.

Pick yourself up

From Swing Time with Fred Aster and Ginger Rogers.

A bit later, of course, he does learn to dance well and they dance together wonderfully.

I read in Sunday Times that the reference of president Obama in acceptation speach come from this moovie made in 1936: I was two at the time and my father tried to imitate, from time to time Fred Aster, and yes, we did pick ourself up and start all over again so many times!

Pick yourself up, take a deep breath, dust yourself off
and start all over again.
nothing's impossible I have found

For when my chin is on the ground, I pick myself up
Dust myself off, and start all over again,

Don't lose your confidence if ou slip
Be grateful for a pleasant trip, just pick yourself up,
and dust yourself off
This part, I did not "hear" but must have been in the orignal liric by Dorothy Fields

And stard all oaver again,
work like a soul insired, til' the battle of the day is won
you may be sick and tired, but you'll be a man my son

of course, this last is from Kipling

Will you remember the famous men who had to fall to rise again
So take a deep breath, pick yourself up,
dust yourself off and stard all over again.

Obama ended it with "and begin again the work of remaking America".

Monday, January 26, 2009

Through the park

The bus let me down at Whitehall Horse Guards, and I had to cross the park to get to the Buckingham Palace. That proved to be one of the most joyful part of my day, Saturday.

So much happens in the park!

People feed the ducks and the squirrels, take photos of them and of each other, sit down to draw the trees and admire the fly of birds,.

I even discovered the first spring flowers already open: and it is only end of January!

I did have a wonderful time also at the Queen's Museum, there I discovered more old wonderful paintings in a great surrounding. Sometimes, we think of royalty as stiff, but how could they be being surrounded all their life by such a joyful and different rendering of life! I came out of there only with the regret not to be able to stay even more, but 7 hours in all a day is really enough for me.

Yes, I am young, only 75 soon, but still... seven hours without almost no sitting down was really enough. But very satisfying!

There was a child looking through a window's grills that gave me going towards home the idea to take this one.
Inspired by Flamish paintings

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Wonderful Saturday visiging the Queen

Or, at least, her Guards, St James parc, Buckingham Palace change of guards and, her wonderful Art and Painting Collection, where for the moment old paintings of Netherlands South are shown.

And at the end, I got, for the first time a clear picture of Big Ben, even if only the top of it.

Back through the park, with people feeding ducks and squirrels, the sun going slowly down (still early afternoon) and the first spring flowers - and it is not yet end of January!

Many people shooting each other near the guards.

i enjoyed taking people of photographers with or without their subjects. So much is going on even in January in London!

And I got a bit of the "action" behind the gates too toward the end.

You may also see some of the pictures I have taken like a slide show:

Friday, January 23, 2009

Rainbow in my life

Sometimes, in gray times, the sun shines even when the raining begins.

Yesterday, I went out as the quality of light asked me to do and arriving at the center of Blackheath Standard, I was rewarded with a rainbow. A great, complete rainbow!

It did not last long, the rain begun and I had to go under the bus stop to continue take pictures, but but that time, just a minute later, the rainbow was gone.

It remained in this (and two other) picture and even more brightly in my mind's eye. Oh, the joy to go out in all weather, the joy the nature can give, the joy of having been there at the decissive moment, the joy of having looked up right in time!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Bonne anniversaire!

Today will be the end of 4 years I begun to write blogs, day by day.

The first blog I opened was the French Il y a de la vie après 70 ans, the title, There is life after 70 years, encouraging myself, and I hope others, I was not yet sure, four years ago, where it would lead me.

It did change my life.

This blog, opened in march, has been accessed around 2000 times, but the one in which I wrote for four years now, has gone beyond 200 000 by now. I am there, still, at my post, day by day, which is one of the most important messages from my blog.

Through my blogs, French or English, Retro-blog or daily, Photoblog or Video site, or photo site and groups, I did connect in four years with hundreds of people. It all begun four years ago.

Until the blogs, I was a passive reader and a writer for my desk drawer. Now I can reach out and hold other hands, and in need not be all alone either.

Meet others all around the glob, or meet people coming nearby.

Coming from France to United Kingdom was a great move, and did change a lot, but begining my first blog changed whole my life.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Thames, after Artist's Way

I should have talked about the Inauguration, and the new hope "yes we can", and the team effort I have perceived from the beginning.

More I see or hear (or read) more I like Barack Obama and the face America is showing the world. What I understand less, why did they call him, with his white Kensas very 60th idealist mother "afro american" and some tell his father immigrated in USA: he never did. He went home, to live his life far from this son, having other wifes and children, before, and after.

His example is already wonderful for all of us and the children of our children even, but from the begining he demonstrated he want to work in team, letting others tell some of what he wanted to do, thought.

I did speak yesterday before Greenwich Independent photographers meeting, in English, which was wonderful, and without .having to search for worlds, but forgot that it is a team effort and let it carried a bit too far, perhaps too long, surely too much of my photos. Did not have the time to speak about Afterclass more, show pictures of others too.

Another time, I hope, I'll be able.

The Artist's Way teaches us to learn from ups and from downs. I'll do.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Borough Market

Borough Market, is accross Borough High street, near London Bridge and even nearer the Sousthwark Cathedral. Sights and tases, and food from all around the world. Here just a few of pictures I took yesterday, while huming the great odors, and finally, tasting e bit.

Friday, January 16, 2009


I do hope Johey24 will not mind if I did borrow two pictures from his stream.

This one done by his mom, about his familly, living in China. The second one done by him in a city of which I never heard before.

Synchronicity, is a great word I just learned, meaning a fortuity coincidence arriving when you need it, when you are engaged in an artistic (or other) endeavor.

I learned in from Julia Cameron's book: the Artist's Way.

I did happen to me yesterday.

I went out to take a few pictures in the fog in the morning, published them, and wrote about it in this blog. Later, I found a commentary under one of them from Johey24. "Just read your blog on this, and I am sorry I misunderstood. I now see the joy of this foggy day coming to you.
You are a remarkable soul. In fact, you made the both of us wipe a tear tonight. Great meeting you."
The photo and blog note did touch him and his friend.

I went to see were they live: in China.

A message from China arrived to me, telling me what I do is not for nothing. It did give me what I was looking for: how to present to Greenwich independent photographers the importance of web and flickr next Tuesday. I received warm words from Johey24 from the other side of the globe, helping me with my future presentation.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Fog in London

What is your first image that comes to mind when you hear "Paris"?

For a lot of people it would have been for long time "French Can-Can", the dancers with their legs bared. Hundred year ago or more, to show even its feet seemed shocking!

For London, the first thing every one would associate would be "Fog".

Of course, also Sherlock Holmes and the fog in the middle of the city, not in the parks, although, it has to be also a thick fog, which was not yesterday. And it was only my second in the last six month.

To find the fog in London become as difficult as finding CanCan dancers in Paris, it is not the norm, it is the exception. More tradition, then present, nevertheless, on the mind sticking yet.

Not only was for me a joy to find it, finally, in London, the fog gave me also occasion to study how people, but mostly trees, look in it. What kind of background the fog offers. As it is not often and no more killing people, it become interesting.

Here, you can look of some of the pictures I have taken yesterday morning on my walk.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Columbia Rd flower market, Portraits

We met with others from the London Portrait Meetup group, in the middle of the Columbia Road flower market. It was a paradise for making portraits!

So many different people, and most of them thanked me, were enchanted that I wanted to take a portrait of them! Even after so many portraits taken, I still marvel of the facility to take strangers images!

Yes, there were a few, very few, who did not want it, or their husband did not want it, but so many more of all ages were at least as happy as me to have their image taken: to be appreciated!

I did not ask all the time, but most of the time, sometimes the group or the "mood" is broken if one asks.

And of course, I took also photos of flowers, street scenes, and the very interesting mosaic, probably done by children.

It was a busy, interesting hour!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

All Artists?

We are all creative.

"Creativity is a natural life force that all can experience in one form or another. Just as blood is part of our physical body and is nothing we must invent, creativity is part of us and we each can tap into the greater creative energies of the universe and pull from that vast, powerful spiritual wellspring to amplify our own individual creativity.

As a culture, we tend to define creativity too narrowly and to think of it in elitist terms, as something belonging to a small chosen tribe of "real artists." But in reality, everything we do requires making creative choices, although we seldom recognize that fact.

The ways in which we dress, set up our homes, do our jobs, the movies we see, and even the people we involve ourselves with—these all are expressions of our creativity.

It is our erroneous beliefs about creativity, our cultural mythology about artists ("All artists are broke, crazy, promiscuous, self-centered, single, or they have trust funds") that encourage us to leave our dreams unfulfilled. As we clear these blocks away, we can become more creative." From the book The Artist's Way

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

After 1st Artist's way

We begun a new cycle of Artist's Way in London, it is held at the Royal Festival Hall every Monday evening.

This time, there is also a second group with Walk through life, the follow up group. Instead of continuing, I decided to do again the first book with a new wonderful people.

Not only I'll do it better now, as I understand more its importance and I am less skeptic about its result, but the new participants give me also a better understanding of it.

I arrived at Waterloo tube station with the Jubilay line, and went away through the footbridge across the Thames and took the tube at Embarkader.

I am looking forward to the next 12 weeks!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Car repair in Bucarest

Of course, not all cars are repaired in central Bucharest on the streets, but some were, at least in October 2007, but the image was published recently and put along a paper speaking about the Financial Crisis in Romania.

I find funny sometimes, and it is not the first time, how journalists or journals, mostly on the web but not only do deform the paper they write, or the reality, adding images that are not really about but give a special "impact".

At least, the image does lead, if you look at the bottom of the article to my image on flickr, where the editor found it. And Google Alert does tell me when my name appears somewhere on the web.

Friday, I'll give an interview for a London version of French newspaper, about my activity. I have one more thing to add to it:

Very very happy now that I can use my Freepass also between 4 and 9 in the morning, being a Senior Early Bird, I love to go swimming around 7 in the morning and now I do not have to pay the fare for it. The bus was always empty in the morning at that time, so that does not disturb anyone. At the swimming pool today, I was told we can now also use the bus in all Britain. Great! I'll have to try out to go farther then London with it, but so many things to discover yet in Greater London too!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Parade in Westminster

It is difficult to choose between so many colorful people's images. Most of them are happy to be photographed, in fact, no ne told me "no" yesterday, event the ones that were there only to assist or the friendly policemen.

But sometimes I took the photo without asking, without waiting for them to stop and pose.

I did ask him, he did pose. I like this one better. But it is mostly because I did not do it right. Of course, when you know that people have only so much patience to stop for you the camera and the shot has to be ready.

I still have long way to go, even if most of my shots I am quite happy with. At the beginning, I was impatient, too much "good food" in face of me, jumping from one to the other, towards the end, I have had to much food, taken too many people's image.

I left, early, not waiting for the end of the parade, with a wealth of photographies, with in my mind and soul also with the great diversity of London and its parade. Tired of all I lived through in only a few minutes or two hours. All the opportunities I had, all the opportunities I lost because I could not take more.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Parade 1st january London

There are traditions in France, from Victor Hugo books, there are traditions in England from Dicken's.

She was with other kids, one of the cutest Oliver, I think, preparing to the Parade near Westminster.

You can see my firsts 32 photographies uploaded to flickr, I choose only some for the moment. Great people and all so happy to pose in their outfit! A parade is such a good place to take phictures of people!

Not only of people of course.

I entered the "small" church at the left entrance of Westminster Abbey, there are so many places to discover to visit again!