28 April, 2011

Welcome to my web site.

As I add items the older stuff gets pushed down the page so you will need to scroll down to see it. This front page only shows the most recent entries – to find older articles visit the index page or use the search box.

The photo at the top of the page is me standing in the middle of the Great Salt Lake in Utah staring at my shoe.

Casie is thirty

5 January, 2014

My niece Casie has just turned 30 and last night she had a packed and glitzy birthday party in a pub on the Caledonian Road. A great evening for a great girl.

To see all the photos from Casie’s party click here



 

On the way to the party I managed to get a nice shot of the impressive new square at the front of Kings Cross station.

Christmas

5 January, 2014

Christmas has come and gone, and this year we did everything differently. Christmas Eve was at Rosie and Henry’s, Christmas Day was at Henry’s mum’s (where we got empirical proof that it is possible for another family gathering to be as loud as a Swash gathering), Boxing Day was a quite and much reduced gathering in Hackney and the Swash family do was also small because much of the older generation were missing.

To see all the photos from Christmas Eve click here



 
To see all the photos from Christmas Day click here



 
To see all the photos from Boxing Day click here


 
To see all the photos from the Swash family Christmas gathering click here


A week in Wales

15 November, 2013

Isabel and I spent a week in wales on near Cardigan and in between the rain storms we managed a bit of walking.

To see all the photos click here

This is Isabel walking the cliff top coastal path as the wind drives the waves onto the rocks below.

Here are some photos of the beautiful Poppit Sands with Isabel doing an impersonation of an Antony Gormley statue.


On one walk on Poppit Sands we came across a seemingly stranded seal, the locals said she had been there a while but her mother came in each night with the tide to feed her.

On the 5th of November there was a really first rate firework display in Cardigan with a giant bonfire and some tasty hamburgers.



John Gibson is sixty

14 October, 2013

We went up to Sheffield just over a week ago to celebrate John Gibson’s 60th birthday. John had organised a coach trip to Blackpool for a group of his friends, with a loosely enforced 50s dress theme, where we played bowls, walked the piers and promenade, ate fish and chips, presented a cake to John and then tried to see the first night of the Blackpool Illuminations. I say tried to see the Illuminations because the place was heaving and the promenade road was one long traffic jam, we managed a small proportion of the complete illuminations route before we had to break off and head back to Sheffield. Everybody had a great time. The next day in the last sun and warmth of the summer we spent a very pleasant afternoon wandering around the Yorkshire Sculpture Park at Chatham before heading home. A really great weekend.

To see all the photos click here





My aunt Joyce is unwell

14 October, 2013

My aunt Joyce is unwell. Joyce has been saying ‘I’m not very well’ for decades whilst actually enjoying very good health. Now, aged 84, she really is unwell after falling over in the street and breaking her arm in a very awkward spot high up near her shoulder. Here is a photo of her recovering at home surrounded by her vast collection of ornaments.

I took these photos using the new sweep panorama function on my iPhone and some show a distorting 180 degree arc. This one shows Joyce nursing her broken arm and a cup of tea in her living room.

Her house is filled with the most amazing and simply gigantic collection of objects, ornaments, paraphernalia and junk. Here are a few shots of parts of her living room.



The last photo above shows one side of the serving hatch to the kitchen, a hatch more or less blocked and made unusable by the collection of objects that clutter it. The photo below shows the other side of the same hatch and the tiny amount of free and usuable work surface in her kitchen, every other surface is covered in piles of stuff.

 
 
This a photo of her ornate and clutter filled bedroom.


 
To see some more photos of Joyce click here

By comparison my 90 year old dad and his wife Peggy live in simpler surroundings in their flat.

A few from Kew

29 September, 2013

Yesterday Isabel and I spent a relaxing couple of hours strolling around Kew Gardens. The autumn colours are not out yet but they will be soon and I still managed to find some visual delights, especially amongst the ground cover plants in the Palm House.

To see all the photos from Kew click here



Hoxton and Brick Lane

28 September, 2013

I spent a pleasant afternoon recently wandering around Hoxton and Brick Lane photographing the street art and the buildings. The transformation of this area from the late 1970s, when I lived in nearby Broadway Market for a couple of years, is simply stunning. The whole place is a blend of the old and the new, the fresh and the crumbling, and it literally buzzes with energy.

To see all the photos i took in Hoxton and Brick Lane click here



 

And under a bridge in Brick Lane the inevitable Top Boys: Sully and Dushane

My Dad is 90

28 September, 2013

We got to together at the Tufnell Park Tavern to celebrate my Dad’s 90th birthday, and as usual when the extended Swash clan gather the evening was noisy, chaotic and fun.

To see all photos click here

To the top of the Shard

29 August, 2013

Isabel and I went up the Shard yesterday, all the way to the 69th floor, 1,016ft above London. What a fantastic view. Later after lunch we wandered back through the crowds of tourists along the South Bank, encountering skateboards, Maasai tribesman and really interesting greenhouses along the way. London is a great city.

To see all photos from The Shard click here



 

Window cleaners working high on The Shard


 
It seems some Maasai support Liverpool FC


We visited the excellent Sebastião Salgado ‘Genesis’ exhibition yesterday which was full of beautiful and stark black and white images. I thought I would try a few in Salgado’s style whilst strolling the banks of the Thames today, a place not as impressive as the Arctic or Galapagos locations used in the ‘Genesis’ exhibition but it has it’s own charms which a high contrast B&W treatment brings out nicely.



A night on the Southbank

26 July, 2013

I spent a very pleasant few hours drinking beer and talking bollocks with my old mate John as we wandered around various bits of the throbbing playground that is the Southbank. Later, feeling rather jolly, I meandered my way back across the river shooting photos as I went. I was fascinated by the play of coloured neon light on the people and city scape. Here are some of the photos I took which I have rendered as black and whites whilst just keeping one or two primary colours.








Slovenia

17 July, 2013

We spent three wonderful weeks in Slovenia in June and July. It’s a fabulous country and the Triglav National Park in the north west, tucked up against the Austrian and Italian borders, is a stunningly beautiful place. The mountains are spectacular, the waters in the rivers are so pure and clear that one can drink them, there are waterfalls everywhere, and the walking is great.

We spent the first couple of days in the capital Ljubljana which is a relaxed and beautiful city, it’s central old town is like a miniature Prague, but it was too hot for slogging around city streets so we moved on to coast for a few days. Slovenia is tiny so everywhere is within easy travelling distance, although we were delayed on our trip to the coast by an accident and tail back on the motorway which we only managed to escape after a couple of hours by a nerve wracking drive back up the motorway in the wrong direction on the hard shoulder and an escape onto the back roads and a way around the jam.

Slovenia only has 45 km of cost line and no real beaches but it was nice being near the sea in the heat. We spent a lot of time just strolling around the tiny alleys and courtyards of the old Dalmatian town of Piran. Then we headed north and into the mountains.

Here are a few photos of Ljubljana and the coast, to see more photos from the coast click here





We were based in Kranjska Gora, a ski resort on the northern side of the Triglav just a few kilometres from both the Austrian and Italian borders. The town was lovely and the walking first rate. Slovenia really exceeded our expectations. We learned a very important Slovenia phrase, ‘Pod Slap’, which means literally ‘Under the Waterfall’ and following the signs to Pod Slap we found some really stunning waterfalls.

Here are some photos of the landscapes we passed through, to see more photos of the rivers, canyons and waterfalls click here



 

Here are a couple of minutes of video of some of the Slovenian waterfalls and rivers

 
Most days we spent walking, often ending up miles from the road at a mountain hut where you could get some splendid if basic hot food and cool drink.

Here are some photos of us on the trail, to see more photos click here


 
This is Isabel sitting next to a gigantic column of water that fell a hundred meters from the cliffs above

 

 
The country we walked through was lush with green vegetation and endless alpine flowers with butterflies and insects flitting around. I took a few ultra closeup macros photos of the flowers and insects (when I could catch them) because when you stopped and really looked at them their complexity and colours were amazing.

Here are some photos of some flowers and bugs, to see more Slovenia fauna photos click here



Once when I stopped for a breather I looked down and I realised that there was a ferocious struggle going on at my feet between some soldiers ants and a large beetle. The ants were winning. Here is a photo of the struggle.

Dead Good

May 27, 2013

Isabel and I took the opportunity of the Bank Holiday sunshine to visit Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park which is a wonderfully secluded and tranquil oasis of greenery and wild life just off the bustling Mile End Road. It’s no longer a functioning cemetery and is now a mass of trees, wild flowers, singing birds, insects […]

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