PHVP 3409 Week 15

Hello again and happy New Year!  A lot of time passed since my last post, but I haven’t disappeared. Previous time I wrote just after my formative assessment and during the holidays I have received an interim assessment mark which was 70%. That really pleased me and showed that I am on the right direction. For Christmas Holidays I went back to the Lithuania with all my stuff and it was a nightmare as usual while passing the customs, but everything finally went ok.

To sum up my holidays, I can say that those 3 weeks passed really quickly, however during that time I could have done more work for sure.  Talking about this module, I took my Bronica with me to the Lithuania because wanted to try to take some portraits. I had an idea about comparing people and finding their stories, however I have produced only two portraits . The problem I noticed was that British people are much much camera friendly and willing to be photographed. While walking through the streets of Vilnius I asked many people for the picture, but majority of them always refused it. Damn..   

Here are two portraits which I have made:

According to Vytautas, aged 84 years old by now, story who is on the left hand side, is a writer who published a new novel not so long away and reckons that life hasn’t changed that much during the last 30 years. Of course, Lithuania became independent but now we have different problems such as emigration. With Zigmas, who is on the right I talked less, but find out that he knows where the UK is because his wife’s sister’s daughter is coming back for Christmas.

Despite the fact of only two portraits, I have captured some city urban landscapes as well, in which I am extremely interested and always dedicate some frames in the film when I see something strange in the ordinary. 

Just before leaving to the Lithuania I had some shots left in my Bronica so decided quickly finish it and see what I’ve got. After developing and scanning this film I noticed once again that I am leaving too much of headroom in the photographs which doesn’t look great. In this term, I must fix this problem. 🙂

Keep an eye on my blog because soon in the next post I will talk more about my new found inspirations of stranger portraiture!


Fred Herzog

Another Saturday came and I am dedicating this lovely afternoon to a very interesting photographer about which I have never heard before. His name is Fred Herzog (1930 September 21). In De Montfort University library, I came up with this monograph and tried to look and get deeper with his works. This photo album with artist essay and interview can be easily bought from Amazon.


Fred Herzog had a hard childhood because during his early childhood he lost his both parents, abandoned school and moved to Canada from Germany. Eventually, he established in Vancouver and straight away started taking photographs in the streets because he felt particular interest in taking photographs with people..

While spreading pages through the book, only then I realised that he is one of the first 35 mm colour photography pioneers. During the 50s, 60s serious organisations such like Magnum and many other photographers were shooting entirely on Black and White films because it seemed to be more appropriate at that era, not that distracting and much cheaper. Colour Photography during those times were related with special occasions or travel snapshots. To make prints from color slides were not only difficult to produce around 60s but also they were very expensive and often chemically unstable.

Fred Herzog wanted to intimate journalism in a city environment and felt that someone has to do it, because people in the future would only be able to see how people looked at those time in Life or Time magazines…

winner cafe portland 1959 by fred herzog




granville and robson 1959 by fred herzogPersonally, while looking at the pictures I couldn’t believe of such great quality colour images taken with the film camera around 1960s. Most of them looks like photographed with Digital camera. Another quite interesting thing which I have noticed looking at Fred’s images is that he also tended to photograph and capture neon lights at night, shop display windows, cars, various companies signs, all the suburbs and back yards with interesting stuff.  (There are some similarities to another very famous still living street and fashion photographer William Klein works.)This year while taking photographs in the streets I became interesting in familiar subjects and, perhaps, for the next year, I will dedicate one module for Urban Landscape theme.

To sum up, Fred Herzog is very interesting and talented photographer who is still living and I reckon, that every photographer should take a look to his works. It is uncommon chance to see early 50s and 60s America in colour!




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