Above Scotland exhibition at the Lighthouse

There's an interesting exhibition on at The Lighthouse called Above Scotland.

Above Scotland exhibition at The Lighthouse

Designed by Architecture and Design Scotland and the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland, it's a selection of aerial photographs each with their own magnifying glass.

Above Scotland exhibition at The Lighthouse

I liked the photos and the way the whole thing was set out. Here's the Tay Bridge up close.

Above Scotland exhibition at The Lighthouse

If you're not into architecture you can use it for a bit of amateur dentistry.

For a while now I've wanted to post things here but writing and uploading everything has seemed like a bit of a chore. I wanted to post pictures of places old and new, near and far without having to write words to go with it or digging up links etc. So I had a look at Tumblr for the first time (I know, years too late) and it's just the ticket.

So if you'd like to see a new photo every please point your gaze here http://teetywoo.tumblr.com/. It posts to Twitter and hopefully to I like's Facebook page from tomorrow. I'm enjoying finding new things on Tumblr so if you're on it please say hello.

What Presence: The Rock Photography of Harry Papadopolous

There's a great exhibition on at Street Level Photoworks in King St, showing the rock photographs of Harry Papadopolous. It's a huge selection of atmospheric photos, really out of the ordinary in style and subject as far as music photography goes. Also, the Lovely Photos of Edwyn Collins-quotient is very high.

Harry was born in Helensburgh and became staff photographer for Sounds magazine. His friendship with fellows Scots in bands like Orange Juice, Aztec Camera and The Bluebells led to an archive of great candid photos like this one.

Aztec Camera by Harry Papadopolous

The whole exhibition really sums up the spirit of the early 80s - handmade haircuts, dodgy jumpers, charity shop chic which somehow came together to be cool. The exhibition is on until 25 February so catch it while you can.

Oh dear, it hasn't been a good summer for blogging, but it was a good one for photos. Here it is briefly, via Instagram.

Cable car!


Closing time on the pier


World's Largest Mirrorball, Blackpool


Antony Gormley's Another Place


The last few butter rolls from I Shoot Tokyo

The news and photos coming from Japan in the past week have been heart-rending and almost impossible to comprehend. Considering the scale of events, the stoicism and community spirit of the Japanese people has been incredible. Today I spent a long time looking at the photos on Shoot Tokyo, the blog of a photographer living in Tokyo. The shots of quiet department stores, impish kids, closed garages and queues say so much about everyday life in Tokyo. It's reassuring, in a way, to see how life goes on.

For anyone wishing to donate, the Red Cross and Save The Children to name a couple have donation forms set up.

Lewis's Canteen by Stephen King

The Lewis's Fifth Floor project is an amazing time capsule of mid-century department stores. The fifth floor of Lewis's in Liverpool was ultra-glam in its heyday. It closed in 1980 and has been untouched ever since, like the Miss Haversham of retail. Photographer Stephen King has documented what's left. Portraits of staff who worked there, back on the floor, add an extra dimension and testimonies from the people who shopped there chime in like the tinkling of teacups to create a very vivid picture of life on the floor. I can smell the hair lacquer from here.

The photos are in an exhibition at The National Conservation Centre in Liverpool until 30 August 2010 and in the book Lewis's Fifth Floor: A Department Story. Thanks to Johnny and Kate for the tip-off.

As is traditional, here's the year in pictures. It was a big, big year. We did loads of travel, most of it in Scotland, and it was all amazing. There's a lot I didn't get a chance to write about, and some of it still unFlickrd (the horror!). But here are some highlights.

Denny Ship Model Experiment Tank

January - 2009 was the year of the museum. We went to lots of different ones, up and down the country. First visit of the year was to the Denny Ship Model Experiment Tank, the museum that sounds most like a Fall song. This was part of Denny's shipyards where they used to test model boats in a tunnel the length of a football pitch.

Midland Hotel, Morecambe

February - A cracking visit to Morecambe for a stay in The Midland Hotel.

Tomasso's Cafe, Crown Road

March - We kept up the classic cafe visits with a trip to Tomasso's in Crow Road, and a visit to Nardini's in Largs which reopened at last.

Bekonscot hospital

April - A big Easter holiday to Camber Sands and the south coast. It was amazing. I took about a milliion photos. Of a great holiday the highlight, unanimously chosen was Bekonscot, the world's oldest model village.

Meat to please you

May - Went to Newcastle for Thinking Digital and spent a long time taking photos of the stalls in Grainger Market.

Drumlanrig Castle

June - The annual trip to Drumlanrig Castle, a really beautiful country estate with a great playground and fantastic cafe.

South Uist

July - A summer holiday driving from Glasgow to John O'Groats, then across to Skye and over to South Uist. This was an amazing trip. It was great to see so much of Scotland from the comfort of a motor home. This is the beach in South Uist which we had all to ourselves. This was as dark as it got in mid-summer, so we were out for hours in the half-light.

Lighthouse Keeper's bedroom, Kinnaird Head Lighthouse

August - More trips up north. This time to Fraserburgh and the Moray Coast. One of the highlights was a visit to the Museum of Scottish Lighthouses. This is the lighthouse keeper's spare bedroom.

Easdale slate

September - A trip to the Stone Skimming Championships in Easdale, which is an amazing place. A bit like being on another planet. This was one of my very favourite places from 2009.

Wemyss Bay Station

October - On the way to Rothesay (to visit the Victorian lavvies) we passed through Wemyss Bay station. Designed by the same architect as Glasgow's Central Station it's a complete stunner. How's that for a ticket office?

Whitelee Windfarm

November - Whitelee Windfarm which was like walking into the future that was promised in an architect's drawing. Happy walkers, at one with nature and huge pieces of industrial machinery.

Snowy church

December - Nothing much happened in December except a lot of snow. Very pretty though.

2010 is already looking like a big one. Here's to another interesting year.


noticings is a lovely new game, from the hands of Toms Taylor and Armitage. Notice something, take a picture, upload it to Flickr, geotag it and tag it with ‘noticings’ and you’re in the game.

Every day the noticings machine cranks into action and players are awarded points for their findings. The rules change as the game goes on, which makes it even more of a challenge. Playing to win is almost impossible, which makes just playing an absolute pleasure. Progress so far is on the Leader Board with updates and rules on the blog.

I've been playing this on and off for the past few weeks (mostly off). It's good to have a driver to go out and look at things, particularly in places you wouldn't normally go. Do join in. (Nice logo Ben.)

Decisive Moments at the Snapshot Museum

The Snapshot Museum (as it suggests, a museum devoted to 'snaps' rather than professional photography) in Morecambe's Winter Gardens has a new exhibition opening this weekend. Decisive Moments - Photographs and true tales from ordinary life is a collaboration between the museum and Lancashire's old folks. The photos are accompanied by soundslides from the subjects, the oldest of whom is 94 years old.

It's such a great idea for a museum, in a fabulous venue so if you're in Morecambe do drop in.

This is a nice little film advertising Built for Britain by Peter Ashley. It sums the book up well in 4 minutes and it's nice to see the author himself making an appearance.

Speaking of which, after I mentioned The English Sunrise and its similarity to Unmitigated England (in a good way) Peter Ashley got in touch to say that he had worked with Tony Evans around that time and the book inspired him to go and do what he does now. He also pointed out that there's a book about Tony Evans called Taking His Time, which I have now purchased and can also recommend.

Tony Evans had an interesting career as a photographer working from the 60s to the early 90s, winning lots of awards for advertising and feature photography in the process - The English Sunrise won a D&AD Silver Award for Most Outstanding Book Photography in 1973. He worked for the Sunday Times and Radio Times in the 1970s, and on special issue postage stamps in the 1980s among other things. He died in 1992 and the book is full of very sweet testimonies from friends and colleagues. I couldn't find out much about him online but as soon as I opened the book I realised that I had seen his photographs everywhere.

So thank you Peter for the tip, and Philip for putting us in touch.

Going through all my photos on Flickr made me realise how much I didn't write about. So instead of a best of 2008, here's some exclusive, never seen before photos (unless you've seen them on Flickr, although I've uploaded some special, like).


January - There are hardly any pictures from January. It's always too dark. So here's an outtake from a lunchtime walk along the Broomielaw. Gotta love that big fat font.

Stark Chemist, Gatehouse of Fleet

February - To Dumfries and Galloway, which is good for spotting old shopfronts. This chemists in Gatehouse of Fleet features in the Wicker Man.


March - A photographic ramble through The Barras.

Knap beach

April - A smashing holiday to Somerset/South Wales. This is my new favourite beach at The Knap near Barry Island. Another one for the Beaches set.

Richmond Park Model Boat Club

May - The Richmond Park Model Boat Club (Gorbals side of Glasgow Green) for their open day. They have a little model of the Finnieston Crane and everything.

Hello World

June - Nothing in June went unblogged so here's the ray from Deep Sea World in South Queensferry again. Because I like him.


July - A ride on the miniature railway in Strathaven.

Crystal Palace dinosaur

August - A week in that London. We had a lovely afternoon going to The Horniman Museum then wandering about Crystal Palace looking at the dinosaurs.

Rock fish fingers

September - Rock fish fingers in Brighton. I'd never seen the like, only bacon and eggs round our way. So exotic!

India of Inchinnan

October - India of Inchinnan, a beautiful Art Deco factory near Glasgow Airport. It's on a long list of things to write about for Nothing To See Here.

All Greatness Stands Firm in the Storm

November - All Greatness Stands Firm in The Storm, a sculpture by Ian Hamilton Finlay on one of the old bridges over the Clyde.


December - It's been another good year. Let's hope 2009 is even nicer.

Happy holidays and all the best for 2009.

The North Wind Blew South from Keith Loutit on Vimeo.

This is a delightful little tilt-shift time-lapse film of Sydney and around. The soundtrack, The North Wind Blew South by Headless Heroes really sets it off. If you like this, there are some more films of Sydney harbour, and an awesome display of teeny monster trucks. All by Keith Loutit (thanks Paul).

This is a nice little preview for the book Hot shots: how to refresh your photos by Kevin Meredith. Kevin is more commonly known as Flickr superstar lomokev. He takes great photos like this one, often with compact cameras such as lomos. Find out more in 5 questions for Kevin Meredith on the Flickr blog and his website Analog intelligence.

Little People in the City

Little People have been delighting the internet for some time so it's good so see them in a London exhibition. I had a look last week. It's fab. The book is also a little treasure.

Morecambe's iconic Jug of Tea stall now has its own Flickr group (photo above by pognophobia). Pictures of one thing over and over again from slightly different angles. I like that. This seems reminiscent of the last days of the New Piccadilly and lately Walthamstow Stadium which was all over Flickr after its closing night. Something so obviously out of place and time (now shown up by the shiny new Midland Hotel) attracts a devoted following, capturing it while they still can.

Jug of Tea

Eee, I remember when it only cost 99p. That's inflation for you.

Moseley baths

Not that I have a thing about public baths or anything but these photos of disused swimming pools at Polar Inertia are swell. More info at Gigi Cifali.


"Bees invade Mark Poulton's Punch and Judy booth" by Paul Russell who consistently takes great seaside photos.


New, from the makers of Little People: a tiny street art project which photographs miniscule people on the streets of London comes Inner City Snail: a slow street art project. I love Little People - so tiny and animated. There's a book due out in September. Not so keen on snails but nice to see them doing something useful for a change.

Boni's Cafe, Clarkston by Michael Prince

Michael Prince, who took those great photos of the George Hotel has been on a cafe tip lately. He has superb photos of Boni's Cafe in Clarkston, near Glasgow and The Ritz Cafe in Millport. They're both real favourites of mine and feature on the second set of I like postcards. They won't be there forever so enjoy while you can.

Mount Baths, Northampton

This great photo, of Mount Baths in Northampton, comes from Played in Britain, a wonderful website documenting "sports-related architectural gems, sporting landscapes and waterscapes, relics and curios of a sporting persuasion". It's beautifully put together with the enthusiasm of a true fan and the weight of an academic volume (it's backed by English Heritage). The galleries are gorgeous, often arresting because these places are so familiar yet few people take the time to look at them properly. If you want to read more there's an excellent booklist, including Liquid Assets: The lidos and open air swimming pools of Britain plus various regional guides.

Unmitigated England

It's always nice to find people who make money from their writing giving it away for nothing. So here's Unmitigated England, a blog by Peter Ashley who wrote the (essential) book of the same name. His books are a must for fans of old signs, local colour, small shops, everyday architecture and other quintessential symbols of Britishness (plus lots of Len Deighton at the moment). The strapline "a country lost and a country found" sums it up in a nutshell (thanks Gareth).

The 2Is coffee bar, Soho

Found in the Finisterre (and Geoffrey Fletcher's London) Flickr group, this great set of colour photos show London in all its swinging glory. The 1950s set has a rare pic of the famous 2I's Coffee Bar in action. The 1960s are even better - it's hard to pick a favourite although I love this bit of spiky modernism, and the Post Office Tower when it was brand new. There's a lovely imperfection about them all.

Grain elevators, Caldwell, Idaho

The Library of Congress Flickr stream (via Coudal) releases thousands of beautiful photos onto the web. In particular, there are lots of wonderful photos of American life from the 1930s and 40s. Was the world really a different colour then?

Vinyl sleeve head

Turn yourself into a famous album - the new craze, spreading faster than the norovirus (via The Skinny).

Rubber emporium

I got this lovely book, Shutting Up Shop: The Decline of the Traditional Small Shop by photographer John Londei. Taken over 15 years it documents all kinds of wonderful emporia - corner shops and general stores, milliners, drapers and lots of peculiar little specialist places like cork stores and this condom shop in Stoke. The shops are beautiful in so many ways and what's even better is the proprietors. Seeing them together gives a glimpse of a disappearing world. At the back there is an update on what happened to them all. Sadly, few survive which makes the photos all the more precious. The Still Open pool on Flickr documents those still going strong.

The George Hotel., Buchanan St, Glasgow

This is quite a find - a beautiful Flickr set of The George Hotel in Glasgow's Buchanan Street. It was a ropey looking place, in one of those big sooty sandstone blocks that stood out like a sore thumb as the rest of Glasgow's buildings were sandblasted into cleanliness. I walked past it most days and wondered what it was like inside, before it was gutted to become the Virgin Megastore. It's great to see how it looked, and lovely to know it has been captured somewhere. Claim to fame: this bedroom was where the end of Trainspotting was filmed. Check out more decayed and decaying places from Michael Prince and the Disappearing Scotland pool.

The Snapshot Exhibition

Artefacts from The Museum of Snapshot Photography are on view in Morecambe Winter Gardens for one week only (12-20 May). The museum will be:

"... the first exhibition space in Britain solely dedicated to the snapshot, the photography of everyday life. It will house an extensive archive of People’s Photography from the last 100 years. The collection includes black and white and colour photographs, slides, negatives, Polaroids, home movies and other photographic ephemera.

The Museum celebrates the art of vernacular photography whilst fully embracing current digital technologies. There will be an online gallery and website where images can eventually be donated digitally. The museum will thrive on local community involvement and have an international profile via the website and online gallery.

Images will be collected from various local sources, eventually moving out nationally. There will also be a drop box in the gallery where photographs can be anonymously donated. The gallery will exhibit both donated and borrowed images, using a mix of original and digitally reproduced work."

It is looking for a permanent home in Morecambe. For more information contact the curator Sonja Campbell.

Inverkip Power Station

Fans of industrial archaeology/Cold War architecture/Stanley Kubrick/obscure buttons and dials may enjoy these photos from Inverkip Power Station. The slideshow is particularly pleasing, full of wonderful details like solid old rotary phones and ghostly log books.

From Wikipedia:

Inverkip Power Station is an oil fired power station built in the 1970's which, by the time of completion, was already uneconomical to run owing to the rising cost of oil. It only reached peak capacity during the miners strike of 1984 and has lain disused since it was mothballed as a strategic reserve in 1988.

Plans are underway for the dismantling of the plant, although no decision has been reached as to a subsequent use for the site.

It's not far from Glasgow on the Clyde Coast. Who knew such wonders lay within.

Suvarnabhumi Airport, Bangkok

I thought this was some crazy sci-fi set but it's Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok, from the astonishing Stuck in Customs which is full of amazing, hyperreal travel photography. Trey Ratcliff, the owner, is currently photographing Chernobyl.

I'm off to Bangkok at the weekend. Any hints or tips?

Little man

From Little people - a tiny street art project. Like minimiam with London instead of cakes.

99 cents stores

Gallery of LA 99 cent stores. One of many good things in the new Polar Inertia.

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