Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Fishtail Neon, Kids Fun Area and Beachy Head and Lighthouse

"Fishtail Neon" :- This is the amazing storefront to Fishtail Neon Lights, a workshop that specialises in neon signage which also provides for TV and Film Studios. During the daylight hours you can walk past this little unit situated within Madeira Drive Arches in Brighton (England) without it standing out too much, it does a great job of going by unnoticed. However, by night it's a completely different story as the entire frontage becomes a blaze of light and colours spilling out over the seafront road.

"Kids Fun Area" :- I was originally going to process this image in full colour as it was captured during that magical twilight hour just as lights are switched on and the sky takes on a marvellous hue that's neither day nor night. There was an electric glow over everything that seems to invite you in and made you feel safe and warm. However, after playing around for a while processing the shot I ended up going for a hard monochrome approach which seemed to create an unease and uncertainty which was in stark contrast to the sign and promise of fun. It also helped that I crouched there like a fool for what seemed and felt like an age in order to get the shot without anyone in it. It was a busy night with a constant flow of tourists and day trippers walking through, I knew if I waited long enough i'd get my chance ... patience prevailed! This was captured on the end of Brighton Pier where there are various rides.

"Beachy Head and Lighthouse" :- This looks dangerously close to the edge mainly because I was dangerously close to the edge. I was probably just 5 or 6 feet away from the terrifying drop and plummet down to the beach, rocks and sea below in order to get the shot. Obviously I made it and am safe and sound due to the fact that I am posting this image right now. This is the famous chalk headland of Beachy Head (near Eastbourne), the highest chalk sea cliff in Britain which stands at a heart stopping 162 metres (531 ft) above sea level at it's highest point. The chalk is anything between 65 and 100 million years old as it was formed during the Late Cretaceous period. The name "Beachy Head" is from the original French name and words (beau chef) meaning "beautiful headland". The Beachy Head Lighthouse became operational in October 1902 and stands at 43 m (141 ft) in height. It was originally manned by three lighthouse keepers, the light made two white flashes every 20 seconds and was visible for 26 nautical miles out to sea. The keepers were eventually withdrawn in 1983.

All Photography Copyright © Justin Hill

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Country Life, Canoe to Shore and Overlooking the Neighbors

"Country Life" :- This scene was captured a few weeks ago as I was walking across the downs from the town of Lewes to the village of Ovingdean via Kingston village in Sussex, England. All in all the walk took me (approx) two hours but I got to see countryside that I had never laid eyes on before because normally i'd be in the car driving along the busy A27 dual carriageway with the scenic surroundings hidden by the high banks. This view is looking towards the south with Lewes (out of shot) to my left and Kingston (also out of shot) just to my right. If you look carefully you can see the downs rolling off in the distance towards the harbour town of Newhaven.

"Canoe to Shore" :- Idyllic conditions for paddling about in a canoe off shore. Normally you'd be in for a rough ride here as the English Channel is a tormented and angry stretch of water at the best of times and you'd be thrown about a fair bit in a boat let alone a canoe. This Summer's eve was however very different, the sun was bidding farewell for the day and an immense feeling of calm seemed to befall and encompass everything in sight.

"Overlooking the Neighbors" :- Neither a window or doorway but rather a hole in the side of a wall. This is a view from inside a Thai teak wooden stilted house looking out onto other Thai stilt houses nearby in a village within the mountains of Omkoi. Oside the only sounds you hear are the clucking of chickens, the odd dog barking and occasionally a 'clapped out' motorbike riding past. Hot, humid and absolutely wonderful.

All Photography © Justin Hill

Monday, 29 July 2013

International Tiger Day

International or Global Tiger Day :- Today is the 29th July so that makes it International Tiger Day. To celebrate here's a photo of me tickling a Tiger's stomach while it's partner in crime had a quick nap in the heat of the afternoon sun. The shot was captured at Tiger Kingdom in Mae-rim, Chiang-Mai, Thailand. If you wish to know more about International Tiger Day then you can read about it here : Global Tiger Initiative.

#tigerphotography #GlobalTigerday

Sea of Light, Doors and Arches and Subterranea

"Sea of Light" :- It's extremely rare that you'll see the illuminations and lighting on Brighton Pier reflecting in the sea like this. Normally the English Channel is a turbulent mass of thrashing 'white horses' and gunmetal grey water that sucks all colour out of everything and reflects very little if anything at all. I had driven part way, parked at the Marina and had decided to walk the 3.8 km (or 2.375 miles) along the seafront to the Pier. I was overjoyed to discover that the atmospherics were perfect and that the sea was calm, shimmering and bathing in the multi coloured lights of the 524 metre (1,719 ft) long famous pier.

"Doors and Arches" :- These old doorways look foreboding and quite sinister at night but during the day they are a blaze of colour and very inviting as many of them are actually art galleries and stores located along Brighton seafront. The area is very famous and is known as the Kings Road Arches. They were built during the reign of Queen Victoria and are a remnant from the Victorian fishing days of old.

"Subterranea" :- Here's a shot looking down Trafalgar Street in Brighton with Brighton Station sitting above in Queens Road. The area has changed alot since the 1800's. On the right hand side of this image there was once a huge hotel in line with the wall, it was knocked down and demolished in order to widen up and open out the road in front of the station. In 1845 Queen's Road was built to improve access to the station and bridge was built across the entrance to Trafalgar Street, widened in 1863 and 1875. The cast iron bridge was added later.

All Photography © Justin Hill

Sunday, 28 July 2013

He Was A Wise Man Who Invented Beer..., Extended North End and They Come At Night

"He Was A Wise Man Who Invented Beer..." :- This is the side door of the Quadrant Freehouse Bar on Air Street in the city of Brighton, England. The bar opened its doors for the first time in 1864 and has been serving drinks for nearly 150 years! It's exterior has hardly changed at all as it still has an old Victorian and somewhat Dickensian look and feel about it, therefore it comes as no surprise to discover it's yet another of Brighton's Grade II listed buildings. The split level interior is relatively small with an old ornate Victorian wooden bar in the middle. The door in this image either leads you down a few steps to the downstairs bar or up a tight, narrow flight of stairs to the newly refurbished upstairs room where they show free films in their "cinema" every Sunday and Monday.

"Extended North End" :- This is the inside of the mighty St Peter's Church located on an island between two major roads in the middle of Brighton, England. The church was built built from 1824–28 and was designed by Sir Charles Barry & once again it's yet another of Brighton's Grade II listed buildings. A large section of the church was later demolished (in 1898) so that a much larger, straight-ended chancel could be built which is what you see in this image. The new chancel was completed in 1906 and measures 53 feet (16 m) long and 35 feet (11 m) wide. The large window at the end window commemorates Queen Victoria and was presented to the church on behalf of the people of Brighton.

"They Come At Night" :- The coast guard houses at Cuckmere Haven must have been photographed millions of times (no exaggeration there either) as they sit right on the edge of the cliff overlooking the English Channel on the south coast of England. This view is looking West towards them from the beach rather than the tourist shots which shows them always with the white cliffs of the "Seven Sisters" forming their backdrop. It was late afternoon / early evening when I captured this image, the sun was beginning to dip and it had caught the clouds in such a way that it created an otherworldly feel to the scene. It wasn't until I started to process the image that I realised just how 'alien' it all looked which is why I chose an unusual title. The beach, cottages, cliffs and estuary have appeared in countless TV programs and Films including "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" and the opening scene in Kevin Costner's "Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves".

All Photography © Justin Hill

Saturday, 27 July 2013

Around Saturn...

Lovely short film consisting of images of Saturn and space all set to a wonderful classical soundtrack of immense proportions. Turn it up, watch full screen and sit back in awe...

A Victorian Road, Futuristic and Brighton Beauty

"A Victorian Road" :- This looks like it's part of a movie set or one of those "Streets of old" that you sometimes find in a museum but it's not. This is a night time capture of Queens Road in Brighton (England) which runs from Brighton Station (built in 1840) down to the Jubilee Clock Tower (built in 1888) and it's still a normal, working, fully functional road that's open to traffic, shoppers, day trippers and tourists. The road itself was constructed in 1845 to give better access to the newly built train station. The road had to be widened in 1878 due to it getting busier and filling up with hotels, inns, shops and warehouses. The road passes over the west side of an old burial ground which belonged to the Hanover Chapel and the cemetery's boundary wall and railings to this day remain on the western side of Queen's Road in the form of a raised pavement. The railings on both sides of the road are listed.

"Futuristic" :- This is a shot of the road that runs around the back of the Rendezvous Casino and David Lloyd Leisure state-of-the-art gym at Brighton Marina on the south coast of England. Unlike the 1970's eyesore design of the Marina itself these constructions are 1990 eyesore designs with a few curves in for good measure. They look to me like the sort of thing you'd expect to be housed in if they ever constructed a moonbase or made you live on Mars. They have a classic "this is the future" look about them that's normally way off the mark when you finally get there. Anyway ... on this day the sun was trying its best to turn me to dust and I spotted the shadows, shapes and lighting from a distance and decided to wander around the back and grab a shot up the road as it made for an interesting image.

"Brighton Beauty" :- A classic seaside sunset as seen from Brighton beach on the south coast of England. I let the sun flare a little in the shot as it added to that evening warmth feel. To the left of the image the twisted metal frame of the once majestic West Pier sits in silence whilst trying to remember what it once was. Just below the pier a lone figure stands on the end of the breakwater taking in the dying sun, the lapping water and the view.

All Photography © Justin Hill

Friday, 26 July 2013

Returning Home, Dark Terrace and A Thing of Fancy

"Returning Home" :- A Thai woman walks back home along the village road while carrying a couple of heavy baskets over her shoulder. This isn't the Thailand that most tourists get to see. It's not the sun drenched beach, 5 star hotel, 24 hour bar version of the Kingdom, this is the real Thailand! High up in the mountains of Northern Thailand there's a region called Omkoi within the province of Chiang Mai. It's situated 314.49 miles (506.13 kilometers) north of Bangkok (Krung Thep) and approximately 79.71 miles (128.28 kilometers) from the city of Chiang Mai itself. It's in the middle of nowhere and the only way to get there is by an arduous drive by car, bus or motorbike. This is where I lived ... this was my home. I miss it and the Thai people that live there so very much. I miss the mountain ranges that surrounded us, covered in thick forestation and jungle growth. I miss the wildlife that used to crawl, fly or slither all over the place. I miss the pigs, chickens and water buffalo, the banana palms, mango trees, rice, chili and tomato fields. I miss riding around the village on the motorbike in the heat of the sun or the torrential downpours that used to catch me out from time to time. I would dearly love to return home ...

"Dark Terrace" :- This is a nighttime capture of the terrace that runs along the walled up cliff face between Marine Parade and Madeira Drive in Brighton, England. Around 1830 to 1833 a huge cement wall was built along the face of the East Cliff from the Old Steine to Royal Crescent and by 1838 it had been continued along to the point where it joined the wall of the Kemp Town estate. It's construction cost £100,000 and the gigantic wall itself is 23 feet thick at the bottom and up to 60 feet high in places! The terrace itself opened in 1890 and is 2,837 feet long from the Aquarium to Duke's Mound and is 25 feet wide. Like many other buildings, monuments and structures in Brighton the terrace is listed as being of special architectural interest.

"A Thing of Fancy" :- A moody and very atmospheric shot of the brightly lit "Golden Gallopers" Carousel on the beach of Brighton on the south coast of England. It's an original Victorian Carousel that still gives thrills and provides enjoyment to both young and old. The following information is taken from Golden Gallopers Carousel By Jennifer Drury :- The ‘Golden Gallopers’ on Brighton seafront was built in 1888 by Frederick Savage at his workshop in Kings Lynn. At the beginning of its life it toured the North of England for over twenty years before being bought by an American enthusiast who shipped it to the USA. It was returned to England in 1990, when it was bought and restored by Mr Corbin of Wiltshire. Owen Smith, the current owner, bought the carousel in 1997, and it has been on Brighton seafront from Easter to September every year since then. At the end of each season the carousel is de-constructed to facilitate an essential programme of six months renovation and repair. All parts are inspected for safety and repainting and re-varnishing carried is out. You can read Jennifer Drury's full article here :- Golden Gallopers Carousel

All Photography © Justin Hill

Posters and Prints for Sale

A quick blog post to remind you all that many of my images are available for purchase over at J.L.Hill's Photography . I present a small selection below of a few that are available ...

Rainbow Row Photographic Print
Stand Your Ground Art Photo
Into the Woods Poster
Pilgrimage Print
Spooky Tree Posters
Enlightenment Poster
Cold Sun Photo
Misty Mill Photo
Blind Curve.jpg Photo Print
Winter Wonderland Photo
Beach Carousel Photo Print
Beached Photo Art
Small Grasshopper Poster
Golden Garden Buddha Poster
Green Beetle Poster
Opening Shell Poster
Tiger Striped Butterfly Poster
Orange Dragonfly Poster
Lizard On Tree Print
Huay Tung Tao Print
Red Spot Poster
The Pier Posters
A Tale To Tell Stretched Canvas Prints
Gulls on a Fountain Art Photo
Fields of Green Photo
The White Stuff Gallery Wrap Canvas
I love the circus. photo print
A Sea of Green Photo
From Days Gone By Art Photo
Bluesy Blue Sea Photo
Bicycles Photo Print
The Lighthouse Photo Print
Path to Jill Photographic Print
Soaking Up The Sun Photo Print
I'm Not Your Stepping Stone Art Photo
Underworld Photographic Print
Bridleway Photographic Print
Light and Shade Photo Art
Whitewashed Art Photo
Afterglow Photo Print
Wherefore Art Thou Photograph
Hush Photo Print
The Blue Room Photo Print
Metal Beach Photographic Print
Layers Photo
Sky Surround Photograph
A Kiss to Build a Dream On Photograph
Lizard On Post Print
Swallow Tailed Butterfly Poster
Beer Bottle Bug Poster
Thai Tarantula Poster
Black & Yellow Dragonfly Poster
Large Leaf Cricket Poster
Dragonfly & Clouds Poster
Corn Fields Gallery Wrapped Canvas
Sea Life Stretched Canvas Print
Vintage Seafront Poster
Beneath the Gate Poster
Vanishing Point Print
Pavilion Bench Photograph