Sunday, February 19, 2012

Something for nothing

click photo to enlarge
I get regular requests from companies asking if they can use one or more of my photographs. In the main they are looking for a no-cost alternative to commissioning a professional photographer or buying from a photographic archive such as Alamy. My reply to anyone in business wanting a photograph but not prepared to pay to for it is to refuse.

Such people seem to think that I will be flattered by their approach and their willingness to credit me in their literature. But I'm not. The fact is I don't need to use my photography to generate an income or to supplement one. Were I starting out in photography as a business I might feel differently, but I enjoy the luxury of being an enthusiastic amateur. However, I do feel an obligation to my fellow photographers who are in business, and I know that every photograph I give away makes it a little bit harder for someone, somewhere to earn a living with their camera.

Consequently, to prevent me having to waste my time replying to people who want something for nothing, I've prepared a new "Contact Me & Enquiries" page (top right) setting out the terms on which I will sanction the use of my photographs. I continue to make them freely available to private individuals and charities. However, companies looking for a no-cost image will, I hope, look elsewhere.

All of which has absolutely nothing to do with today's photograph of the carving of a face on the porch of St Mary's church, Beverley, East Yorkshire. This character has a doppelganger on the other side of the doorway, the pair seeming to act as weird medieval welcomers to those who visit this stunning building. It took me a little while to work out that the face is not that of a fanciful creature but a person wearing an animal hat with ears, of much the same kind that parents today buy for their babies and children. Which reminds me that the only firm request I made of my son and daughter-in-law regarding the upbringing of their first child (my first grandchild) is that she wasn't made to wear such a hat because the ridiculousness that they endow on the defenceless infant constitutes child cruelty. Needless to say my wishes were ignored.

photograph and text (c) T. Boughen

Camera: Canon
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 90mm
F No: f8
Shutter Speed: 1/200 sec
ISO: 100
Exposure Compensation:  -0.33 EV
Image Stabilisation: On


Anonymous said...

Hats?!!  I never forgave an aunt for knitting me a hat when i was five or six.  It was a rib knitted, pointy noddy hat with a huge pompon on the pointed apex.  The whole thing in vivid yellow!  But much worse was the wide knitted strap that went under the chin and fastened with a huge green button over one ear.  Whether such a hat was fashionable at that time remains unknown, but I don't recall seeing anything else quite like it - until the following year when I received a highly colourful striped version.  I never really got over those hats.
Apologies for the reminiscences prompted by the stonemasonry and your observations.  It's obvious that the image is wearing a hat, minus pompoms.  The pained expression says it all.

By the way, if you look at the image upside down, the eyes take on a different light. Just an incidental observation.

Tony Boughen said...

I think many of us had knitting and hat experiences not too unlike the one you describe. In my case it involved astrakhan, a material that doeesn't seem to figure in hats these days, if in fact it can still be found. By the way LA, you didn't pose for this photograph did you?

I also like the slightly non-plussed look on the face of the carving. The one on the other side, as I recall, looks even odder and is more time-ravaged.


Anonymous said...

Hahaha, so cute, but the poor child must have itched from head to toe in that hideous pea green suit.