Picture of the Week

23 November 2014

Week 47: Onil photo workshop

Filed under: — Administrator @ 17:55

A busy week with most of the photography taking place at the weekends at the beginning and end of the week. There were some big events at the office: the inauguration of our new building and the meeting of our Administrative Board; more importantly, the office photo club, Lightbox, had arranged a workshop on traditional black & white photography for the uninitiated.

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The starting image is probably my best photo of the week. On Sunday afternoon my wife convinced me to join her for some golf practice, and on the way back to the car I snapped this image in the light of the setting sun:
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Cats like to look down on us humans. This one is a golf course cat, among the “customers” for the food I put out for them:
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This is just a random cat in the town of Onil:
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Also on Sunday, I went for my usual bicycle ride, this time inland to the town of Novelda, sort of on the way to Madrid. Along the way, I stopped on the outskirts of a town called Agost to take pictures of some nice wall painting in an industrial area:
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“Earth, wind and fire”:
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A club of dubious repute in the middle of nowhere–I could see no trace of actual buildings:
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The Alicante-Madrid high-speed train tracks near Novelda:
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Novelda is a typical smallish town around here. A common sight–a group of old men chatting away in the shade of the town hall:
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On Monday our new building was inaugurated as part of the celebrations of the 20th anniversary of our agency. There were guests from 49 countries, and from various levels of Spanish government, although no minister from Madrid attended. The mayoress of Alicante is currently indicted for corruption, and even though she belongs to the governing Partido Popular, nobody from the central government wanted to be seen with her. Here is, however, the president of the Valencia autonomous region, Alberto Fabra, speaking in our new auditorium:
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The weather was still lovely, considering it is late November. This is our outdoor terrace/smoking area:
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My dog Cheeta is not the guard dog she was when she was younger. Now, when I come back from a bike ride, I usually find her sleeping:
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She wakes up when I slam the gate shut, or if I am close enough when taking the picture to allow her to hear the camera shutter:
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I walked Cheeta before dawn a couple of days this week, and during one of those walks I took this semi-abstract picture of a house and streetlight in our subdivision:
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Another image from my neighbourhood; two dogs wait for their humans outside the video rental place. Netflix is not yet available in Spain, and many people have connections that are too slow to stream films anyway, so the rental business will continue for some time yet:
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The remaining images are from the inland town of Onil, about 45 km from my place. I was there on Saturday for a workshop on traditional black & white photography, arranged by our office photo club Lightbox and held at the house of Philippa, our main proponent of the darkroom. Since I never completely stopped shooting film, there was nothing new for me, knowledge-wise, but I came along for the fun and to help out with the practicalities.

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One of Philippa’s three cats was hunting a centipede when I arrived:
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The workshop started with Philippa explaining her passion for black & white film photography:
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She also talked about darkroom printing, including dodging and burning:
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The audience listened attentively:
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Afterwards, the participants practiced loading film onto the reels, first with eyes open, then with eyes closed. Corinne here is using a discarded roll of medium format film, since she had brought along her newly purchased Diana camera and so would be developing MF film later in the afternoon:
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We went for a walk around the town to shoot some pictures that would then be developed and printed. Onil turned out to be a pleasant little town. This is one of its major intersections:
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Rustic road signs:
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Colourful pharmacy:
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There is a convent dating from the 16th century in the centre of Onil:
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There are also modern wall paintings:
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And something truly strange, El Muro Chicle, or Chewing Gum Wall. Obviously this is not officially sanctioned by the town but on the other hand it appears to be tolerated:
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Philippa is a multi-faceted person. Besides her photography, she is a licensed practitioner of traditional Chinese medicine and also practices aikido. So when I asked to do a portrait of her by her aikido “altar”, this was the result:
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1 Comment »

  1. Nathan–superb as usual! Loved #18–a black-and-white cat sitting in the audience learning B+W photography!
    Amazing catch–thanks!
    Paul

    Comment by Paul — 23 November 2014 @ 19:25

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