Stills V3

February 7, 2012

Shopping for Christmas

Filed under: Mike — sojournerphoto @ 00:03

One from a walk around a local Christmas market. The, very good, butcher is there all year and the display only shrinks slightly out of Christmas season.



  1. Mike, you should add this to your postcard project.

    Comment by northcoastphotography — February 7, 2012 @ 02:29

  2. what an interesting butcher, not sure you wou’d ever see anything like this in Sydney. The woman in the middle looks to be wearing some of the animals for sale which creates another layer to look at.
    Line of feathered and fured animals, line of plucked birds, line of clothed animals on a decreasing scale of numbers.

    Comment by rhoehne — February 9, 2012 @ 04:54

  3. I hope he only has birds on display that have been shot in season! It’s good to see some healthy rabbits on display too. The row of backs is entirely appropriate here and says a lot more about what this is all about than a straight shot of the display itself and together with the other verticals in different layers make quite an impact. The winter is well conveyed by the clothes being worn and the hunching against the cold – would they feel warm enough now?!!

    Compare with our meagre display

    Comment by zavaell — February 9, 2012 @ 07:39

  4. Thanks all. I’m pleased to say that butchers, and rabbits, of this sort are not uncommon up here, although this particular butcher provides meat of the highest traditoinal quality. Here I am usually provided with 5 week old beef, kept behind the counter, or year old air dried ham. Last Christmas the haul of game included teal and snipe as well as rabbit, hare and pigeon. What a contrast to your display John! (I actually thought the picture was fascinating, and would perhaps be an interesting diptych with mine?) In fairness, it was the village’s Edwardian Day, so the display was moved outside. The produce is always available though, in season.

    An interesting finding on tis picture is that I shared it on Open Photography Forum as well and a couple of people suggested that I clone out the shoulder of the chap moving out of frame left and remove the dark band of brick on the right. Given that I would rather discard the image than clone out the chap on the left and that I actively decided to keep the frame with him and the band – I value the additional life he brings and the framing provided by next door’s darker and more run down brickwork – it reflects very different approaches to photography. Removing the shoulder, for me, invalidates the ‘this is what I saw’ response and would make the photo dishonest. It would also rob the image of complexity in search of some ideal of a pure image – all in my opinion. Further, it was posted in photojournalism and documentary section…

    Thoughts gratefully received.

    Comment by sojournerphoto — February 12, 2012 @ 03:06

    • shoulder and brick help frame the picture for me, without works OK, the only person that would know is you. But you have to please you topmost.
      I like it just the way it is.

      Comment by rhoehne — February 12, 2012 @ 10:38

    • Hi Mike,

      I have been distracted by many things and I have neglected to react to this one. I mostly agree with the comments of others. It is a great shot which works as a postcard documentary as well as a fine example of street photography, Re, the cropping/cloning, I have difficulty in understanding why you would actually choose to discard the image rather than cloning out the chap on the left? I am not saying that the image is better or worse with or without him. I am fine with the images as presented, no worries. But had you done the cloning, I would have equally liked the picture. The person neither adds value nor distracts too much. I can see why you consider this as dishonesty, certainly within the context of photojournalism. However, I do not consider this picture to be photojournalism since it is presented here in Stills, which deals with the photography mainly as an art form. If the picture would be printed on my local newspaper, then it would be PJ indeed. This all does not take away from the fact that it is your image and you have to be true to yourself. We are just lucky that you chose to share it with us. :)

      Comment by Cem — February 12, 2012 @ 15:01

  5. I think you have to apply the HCB test- would he have been happy to have had the man there? Cloning is pretty well out of the question so cropping is the only alternative but not really useful imho. Why? Because this is either about symmetry or about observation. The latter can easily carry the departing figure although HCB might have waited the extra second or made something of him as a foreground feature (unlikely)! For symmetry, and a more formal art shot, one would have needed not only to wait the second but shift a tiny bit to get the foursome in the middle of the window (if at all possible) and then balance out the rabbit with the tails on the right minus the door! Simple really!

    Comment by zavaell — February 13, 2012 @ 07:45

    • Thanks John, I think that’s a helpful perspecive(!) For me this is more about observation than symmetry, so it can carry the departing shoulder. Hanging around for the split second would be fine, but for the horde bearing down from both sides:) In practice this was the one time the pasing traffic cleared and I was able to grab a shot. I have one other frame and that is obscured by a passing pedestrian. -who didn’t form a usefu foregrond feature:)

      Comment by sojournerphoto — February 13, 2012 @ 22:46

  6. This looks very similar to the butchers in Brockenhurst where I took “Season’s Greetings to Turkeys”. A real butchers with real meat! I like the audience and their concentration on the window and the layers in the image. The lady with the scarf is certainly a strong element in the image.

    An interesting debate about manipulation. My limit is laziness, if it becomes too much effort its probably not worth doing! I don’t have an ethical limit. I process Nora’s images and my laziness is not allowed to get in the way of her wishes, so I manipulate her images far more than mine!

    Comment by Rex — February 13, 2012 @ 22:15

  7. Interesting comments on an interesting photo. Though I don’t hesitate to clone out something I think detracts from my own photos, I think that both the shoulder and the dark line on the right are not distracting, and might even be helping to frame and direct to the main event. Too much symmetry can be ho-hum. The shoulder in particular also brings me into it feeling more a participant than only a distant observer. The woman with hat, hair and scarf is key to this image for me. I like it very much.

    Comment by Christina — February 16, 2012 @ 18:31

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