The first Liverpool Comic Con naturally appealed to me. I’ve been to a few before. London in err… 2007? Toronto in 2006. I took photos. I took bad photos. Jaunty angle boring photos, which got huge traffic at the time. So I was tempted to visit the Liverpool Comic Con but I was concerned it would be overflowing with people like me from 2006. I realise that I need to find my own unique voice and angle, so the thought of hanging out with lots of other photographers all fighting for the same photo at an event like this really isn’t appealing. I’m sure you’re all beautiful snowflakes but there’s no point in everyone shooting over each other shoulders for the same photo.
In the end I thought I could stay at home or go out and see what I can do. Thankfully all the photographers were inside. It was overcast and I found a grey wall to shoot against. Within a minute of getting my camera out I was asking people if I could photograph them. 3 hours later I had taken 96 portraits and needed to go somewhere warm. I had SO much fun. I had good light, then great light, then good light. I had awesome chats with people about manga, comics, and lots of geeky things. I learnt about new anime. I was sad to not see anyone in a Starfleet uniform. Ah I had loads of fun. There’s some highlights in this weeks vlog.
So. Much. Fun.
I worry way too much about whether I’m doing good work. Whether I’m on the “right” path. Frack it. I just need to worry about having fun, paying bills, and having more fun.
Highlights below and a full series can be seen on my portfolio.
Morning Gloryville is an event that takes place on the first Wednesday of the month at Constellations in Liverpool. It’s basically a morning rave from 6:30am till about 10am. A morning rave. Crazy. Constellations is right next to a school so when some kids are wandering into school going “Ugh its too early.” there are people bouncing out of a rave filled with more energy than your average star. It’s a great contrast.
I was too young for raving as it developed in the early 90s. I do remember my cousins talking about places like the Paradox. I didn’t get it. I was perfectly content playing Elite 2: Frontier and Street Fighter 2 on my Amiga. I missed out on raving the night away and photographing it all.
I thought it would be interesting to photograph people as they came out after the early morning rave. Everyone was absolutely buzzing with energy and positivity. It was fantastic. I’ve never been hugged so much. The positive energy was infectious.
For the past few years I’ve enjoyed making a series of portraits at Liverpool Pride. This year was no exception, even with the rain. I was equipped with a newly purchased Hasselblad 500cm and set to work. Due to the rain I shot 4 on my Fuji X100s as I was a bit over-protective of the Hasselblad, which when you think about it is silly. The Hasselblad has no electronics whereas the X100s is filled with them. Anyway. It was good fun and great to chat with people.
The X100 photos are the last 4. The rest are Hasselblad. There’s a bit of a light leak issue but I’ve got a kit on its way from Italy to correct that. Only about £6 and its an easy fix. Even at f/4 the depth of field is crazy. I thought these were all in focus but it seems that medium format is very unforgiving. You absolutely have to nail the focus, even at f/4. Tricky when the viewfinder is reversed so your natural instincts to correct the composition are the wrong way around. I was saying to my wife this morning that I think the blad is now my favourite camera. It just feels so mechanical. It’s a joy to use. The viewfinder is exceptional and the photos are very very nice. There’s an acceptance of film. Digital I always try and perfect in post. Film I try and perfect at the scene because when I see the print/scan thats the photo. With digital I’m always adjusting shadows, highlights, whites, blacks, clarity, exposure, white balance, etc in Lightroom. I love this camera and can’t wait to use it more. Anyway, less nerd talk more photos.
While I was eating my burger I noticed an interesting mix of people stopping by. So naturally I asked people if I could make a photograph of them. I met people from Manchester to Poland to France. Some were heading north to Scotland to see friends and some were stopping by to stock up. Quite a few didn’t have any clue that this place existed, just as I didn’t a few months before. The idea of an independent service station is kind of crazy and yet makes perfect sense. Anyway, here’s some of the people I met.