14 April 2014

Snoozing in the afternoon sunshine - © PAUL TREACY (.COM) 2014.

I was at my desk working on my forthcoming X100zine no. 1 when I decided to check up on my wife and son outside as it all went quite.

They were snoozing blissfully.
This is the large version of my Instagram post.

paultreacy.com

13 April 2014

My Instagrams Large - © PAUL TREACY (.com)

Hello.

I know, I know. It's been ages since last I posted here. But life has been somewhat hectic of late.

I sometimes have good ideas for posts to this blog but for one reason or another I just don't get to post them and they go to waste.

I have been getting really into Instagram and have been posting relatively regularly of late but given that the images are quite small, I thought it would be a good idea to post the large versions here. I think it would be a good use of my blog and will hopefully encourage me to post more often.

So here's an image from earlier today of two cool tiny twins on a toy motorcycle behind my youngest son, Connor while we were all out for a cycle in Crystal Palace Park enjoying the fine weather.



So let us see if I can make a habit of this.

I'll endeavour to be back soon.

Thanks for your time.

paultreacy.com

12 January 2014

Meditation and the sound of cities - © Paul Treacy (.com)

Had an interesting conversation with my mum earlier today. She called as I was hanging out the washing, a chore I find increasingly relaxing as I get older, weirdly.

She's going through chemo therapy at the moment and is doing quite well. As a yoga practitioner and teacher she finds meditation very helpful, not only in giving her additional strength in coping with the stress of such a regime of nausea causing treatment but in helping her rest her mind and body during a period of substantially interrupted sleep.

This got me to thinking about meditation, rest and living with stress. I don't meditate. Certainly not in a yogic sense. But there are things that I find meditative. Listening to music is one, of course, both in headphones and through speakers though I used to dislike headphones preferring instead to hear the music in the environment. However, listening in headphones has its pluses particularly in a busy family environment affording a brief moment of isolation with the music appearing, exclusively, to be completely inside one's own head.

Another is reading. Fiction or fact. I find reading from an iPod or iPad more relaxing than the printed page, being as I'm dyslexic. The back lighting allows me to read effortlessly whereas the printed page requires acute concentration and does not come easily.

Most of all, however, I like to walk. To walk and walk and walk. I'm a pacer by nature anyway and even as I write I'm standing at my desk rather than sitting. It's more relaxing for me that way.

I'll walk anywhere. The countryside has its charms, of course but so too do the city streets and it's the streets that I find most meditative of all.

I'm lucky to live close to several beautiful urban parks and to Sydenham Woods which is rife with all kinds of life. The birdsong is delightful and uplifting as are the sounds of fauna rustling beneath the flora.

The city streets have a magic to them too that can be just as restful. There are fewer birds about and it's not as green but there is a soundscape to urban life that seems to vibrate in me, energising me but it also enables a certain peace and relaxation. That's not to say I'm off guard, on the contrary my senses are acutely tuned in and I process everything that goes on around me. In such a heightened state of awareness I can hear the city hum. There's a magical frequency that comes from all the urban sounds mixed together. And it's constant. It's not loud. Nor is it melodic. It's just there. Ever present. Perhaps it's akin to the sound of our own bodies when we are at rest and awaiting sleep, we can hear the blood pulsating through our blood vessels.

I've been aware of this ever since I sat on a pier in Long Island City, Queens looking across the East River at the UN building on Manhattan and suddenly becoming aware of the hum that Manhattan was making, like some kind of living creature. I used to visit this pier from time to time to familiarise myself with this sound, its note, its frequency, its timbre. It was harder to tune into it in Manhattan itself but easy when across the river from it. But I developed a sensitivity to it and learned to pick up on it while being immersed in it.

I sensed it too in London a while back while standing atop Monument and looking out over The City of London and The Thames. Since then I've been able to tune into it while walking London's streets. It remains the ultimate form of meditation and relaxation for me, tuning into the sound of the pulse of a great city. The cumulation of human activity, our machines, wildlife, wind and the flurry of echos bouncing off the built environment makes for a perfect symphony, distilling the sounds of chaos into a single note. Hear that note and you will feel a release of endorphins such that your stresses will ease and you'll feel at one with the city itself.






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Thank you for your time.

09 December 2013

New Series - Choosing The best Image

You have to be so alert as a street photographer. This series of images were made not while out specifically to shoot but while on my way to school to fetch my son.

With camera in hand and my mind wandering, I caught sight of this cat sitting on this pebbled wall and our eyes met. It fixed me with that arresting feline stare they do. I was transfixed.

We regarded each other cautiously. As I moved a little closer it took off very quickly. I followed, moving in parallel.

In a situation like this, one photo is never enough. you need to work it some.



No matter the subject, the light, people or animals, the first image is rarely the best. Work it. Linger. Make more photos. If it's not coming, linger longer. Be patient. It'll likely come. If not just cut your loses and move on. But at least you'll have given the situation a chance. That's all you can do. Too many photographers don't.

These were made with a FujiFilm X100 with a wrist strap. This is the first camera I have used with a wrist strap in 25 years of photographing and it's because the strap eyelets failed. In this situation I'm glad it was on my wrist as otherwise, given that I was heading to school, it may not have been so readily available stuck in my kit bag.

I realise that I have gathered quite a lot of cat pictures. I'm beginning to like them on some level. Maybe it's because they skulk around like we street photographers do.

We are comrades of a sort.

I'll be back next week with another example.

Black Cat 12x16" gallery print

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@photohumourist
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11 November 2013

Current promo card design


I have sent some emails out to editors already and a hard copy will be ready next week.
Hope you like it.

paultreacy.com
photo@paultreacy.com

Photo-essayist and street photographer


Images at my PhotoShelter archive are available for sale as signed gallery prints.