Friday, April 9, 2010

Over the hills and Herne Bay

This week's travel update... nothing to report - amazingly! I did what I should have done last week and just stayed on the M2, I got to Herne Bay in the predicted 2 hours as opposed to the 3 and a quarter hours it took me last week!

Steve and Gary weren't running the lesson this week so I met two new faces, Ted and Heidi.

Health and Safety was on the agenda and Heidi explained that she had an additional fire alarm in her home alongside the traditional battery operated version.... her little dog! Heidi has trained her dog to bark like crazy if there's a naked flame in a room with nobody in it! For example, if there's an ambient candle left burning in the living room and the occupier leaves for any reason, the dog will bark and go nuts until someone re-enters the room - absolute genius!

At the end of this weeks lesson I explained to Heidi and Ted what on earth I was doing in their lesson and who I was and made my request for models. Would you believe it, 7 out of the 8 attendees agreed to be photographed which was absolutely fantastic and much more than I expected - I thought I'd be lucky to get 2 people to agree! The people I've photographed (all of whom are potential Olympic Volunteers) look fabulous in the pictures and there are some real characterful (is that actually a word?) faces, which have made the set of photographs really interesting.

From my previous journeys to Herne Bay and Tunbridge Wells, I knew I wanted to have a consistency in the images, so I took head portraits against a light background using fill flash. I wanted these images to say something about "Volunteers" more than anything else and the fact that volunteers are so often unsung heros, especially in the context of the Olympics... the additional cost of paid staff would render the Olympics financially crippled.

To this aim I took the pictures slightly out of focus using a long exposure, therefore blurring the portrait of the person.

This was to signify two things:
1) Volunteers are proactive - hence movement in the picture
2) Volunteers are rarely noticed, they are more like objects that blur into the background

Above is my test shot of Lewis to give you an idea...

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