Derry Moore is a world renowned portrait photographer whose work has appeared in Men’s Vogue, Architectural Digest and whose photos appear in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the National Portrait Gallery. In An English Room he shoots a diverse group of Britain’s finest in their favourite ever places, their personal sanctuary, the place they go to work, read, relax and get away from it all. Through his photos he attempts to discover what makes the essence of “An English Room”.
An English Room is a beautiful hard copy book that would look fine on many a coffee table. Moore shoots his subjects in their choice of room with accompanying text explaining why they love it so. Each room also gets an additional two page spread of photographs. The photos are, as you would imagine, superb - beautifully lit and composed making the architecture come alive. What is particularly impressive is how he manages to imbue his photos of the empty rooms with the personality of the person who loves them. It’s like they’re haunting the rooms after they’ve left.
The book covers a diverse array of individuals from various different fields. We see author Jeanette Winterson embracing the joys of book shop Shakespeare and Company in Paris, actress Harriet Walter in her elegant home framed by a wallpaper of trees rising high into the sky, Alan Bennett in the room he decorated in Primrose Hill 40 years previously, Paul Smith in his studio surrounded by art and vintage toys - a room “full of lovely things”, Stephen Fry in his dressing room at the Apollo Theatre nesting amongst his books and photographs and the Duchess of Northumberland in a tree house that she has built at Alnwick Castle - festooned with fairylights and grander than my flat.
(Paul Smith & Alan Bennett in their rooms)
Fans of Benedict Cumberbatch will, of course, have been drawn to the book as his photo graces the front cover. Benedict is pictured in the library of the Garrick Club in London and discusses his excitement of being taken there first by his father and having the opportunity to read so many beautiful old scripts in an “oasis of quiet”.
For lovers of architecture, interior design, beautiful photography or for those enjoy getting a tiny sneak peek into the lives of others An English Room is an essential buy.
Deep sea diving … in a wheelchair? Artist Sue Austin takes her wheels underwater to combat limiting views of disability
After a battle with illness damaged her ability to walk, artist Sue Austin started using a wheelchair. In a talk at TEDxWomen, she describes how beginning to use a wheelchair — something she found exciting and freeing — inspired people she knew to treat her differently:
"Even though I had this new-found joy and freedom," she says in her talk, “people’s reaction completely changed towards me. It was as if they couldn’t see me anymore, as if an invisibility cloak had descended.
"They seemed to see me in terms of their assumptions of what it must be like to be in a wheelchair.
"When I asked people their associations with the wheelchair, they used words like ‘limitation,’ ‘fear,’ ‘pity’ and ‘restriction.’ I realized I’d internalized these responses and it had changed who I was on a core level. A part of me had become alienated from myself. I was seeing myself not from my perspective, but vividly and continuously from the perspective of other people’s responses to me.
"As a result, I knew I needed to make my own stories about this experience, new narratives to reclaim my identity."
Sue began to factor her wheelchair into her art, hoping to encourage viewers to reconsider the way they look at disability — to show that a wheelchair isn’t a punishment, but an opportunity to experience the world in a different way.
One way she did this was by working with a team to create a self-propelled wheelchair that works underwater, allowing Sue to scuba without leaving her chair.
I realized that scuba gear extends your range of activity in just the same way that a wheelchair does,” she says in her talk, “but the associations attached to scuba gear are ones of excitement and adventure — completely different to people’s responses to the wheelchair. So I thought, ‘I wonder what will happen if I put the two together?’
At first, the goal seemed impossible: “When we started talking to people about it, engineers were saying it wouldn’t work, the wheelchair would go into a spin, it was not designed to go through water — but I was sure it would,” Austin told the BBC. But things worked out, and the results are quite spectacular. “If you just put a thruster under the chair all the thrust is below the center of gravity so you rotate,” she said. “It was certainly much more acrobatic than I anticipated.”
Watch Sue’s entire talk below, and see more of her art at her website.
Photographer Francois Brunelle has been working on an amazing project; searching for people who look strikingly similar but have no relation to each other. These are some of this incredible finds.
What’s more incredible about this is that these people don’t only have similar faces but body types as well!
Eight of my favorites reflections, mostly shot in 2011. I feel the series was complete around the end of summer, but I keep on shooting those upside down reflections. I just love it.
They’re all untouched, except the 5th one (but it’s still a very light cropping). I shoot it as I frame it, cropped a lot, they wouldn’t make sense. It’s about seeing the reality the other way round on purpose. It’s not about shooting blind before cropping a lot.
Anyway, it’s fun trying because it’s challenging to frame something upside down while you focus “upside up” - you have to try to see what I mean.
For those who wonder, there’s not much editing in it either, with strong contrast lenses, a bit of saturation, the occasional weirdness of the Leica M8 sensor and you’re good to go.
I post those eight because they work well together. I avoided posting wide and b&w ones for the sake of comprehensiveness. May be I’ll post a b&w one soon.
I don’t have a lot of time right now, but I have lots of stuff to post and write about. I was foolish enough to buy a M Monochrom and boy it’s quite a body. Not for everyone, for sure, but quite spectacular, imho. I’ll post a quick hands on and a few pics this week. For those who don’t work this week-end, enjoy. For those who work, like me: courage! :-)
Accent theme by Handsome Code