Month: October 2014

Medium Format fun

I’ve used Medium format before at college, but only on the Mamiya 645s in a tattoo studio, which can be seen here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/53495510@N08/sets/72157632199040521/. As well as using them in the studio for our Portrait module last year.

We took the Hasselblads out last week down the Honeybourne Line just to familiarise ourselves with the medium formats so we know what we’re doing for out Narrative Landscape assignment in 003. As well as Large Format. I had fun using the Hasselblad and decided to shoot some portraits of Luke, Conor and other passers by on the honeybourne line.

It was fun to be creative again rather than just taking pictures at work every week.

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Barbour collective 2014?

I love the depth, contrast, detail and square format of medium format. I love that you have to look down to make your composition. I love everything about using the Hasselblad, especially the way it sets the correct exposure across all shutter speed and aperture combinations. So if you want a higher depth of field, all you’d have to do is turn the dial and you would keep the same exposure, just with a higher depth of field.

Some shots are slightly out of focus which is highly annoying.

Cant wait to keep using it more and more this year. May try the Mamiya 7 and 645 soon.

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Mid Module panic

So, things aren’t going very good at the moment, I’ve asked Andy on Facebook last week if it was okay to come and photograph his team. He was really happy and okay with it initially and was more than happy for me to photograph his business and team. Andy fb

Although lately, the conversation of me coming down to Birmingham has slowed quite alot recently. I’ve stayed in contact with him and have tried to ask when he’ll next be in Birmingham, but I only receive one word answers or no answers in some cases. So im kind of panicing. It’s getting further into the module and time is running out, I need to shoot something and find a decent story. I could probably stick with this idea, but it will be left super late to the deadline. Which I do not want to do.

So I may take a trip down to Birmingham Wheels Raceway this Saturday to photograph the ‘Halloween Spooktacular’ which involves Banger racing and BriSCA F1 Stock Cars which look like this.

It’s a very low end level style of Motorsport with a sort of “grassroots” and banger style to it. Many drivers are working class heros with a full times job, no sponsors, no support and all out of pocket, just for the fun of taking part in Motorsport. Often these classes of Motorsport are used as gateways into other, more popular forms of Motorsports. Like a ladder system in a way. You start with bangers, then end up racing around Silverstone in a GT2 race car. At least that’s the dream.

I’m going to go to Birmingham Wheels Raceway to photograph this Halloween event this Saturday, just in case my L2D idea falls through and it gives me an excuse to photograph racing which is awesome. Here’s the timetable for the next 3 weeks at Birmingham Wheels.

BW Timetable

http://www.spedeworth.co.uk/incarace/venue.php?name=Birmingham

I’m going to call the track office on 0121 771 0725 to try to arrange track side access, so I can shoot on the infeild and not be restricted to behind the barriers. I’ve done it before at drift events, but my Public Liability Insurance ran out in March, which is often needed to photograph Motorsports events.

How did I find Learn 2 Drift?

I’ve known of Andy Arnott, the owner of the ever growing Learn 2 Drift business since I started photographing drifting in the early days in the British Drift Championships and Practice Days. I’ve seen and photographed him drive along side his team which used to be known as Slide School Drift Academy – which later was renamed to Learn 2 Drift (L2D) throughout 2012/2013/2014.

 

The first time I ever saw Andy drive was at Awesomefest 2o11, at Mallory Park. Awesomefest is hard to describe, but the name pretty much states it all. A 3 days event packed of drifting, BMX, live music, motocross, night time drifting and a ton of modified cars. There had never been an event to such a large scale before. Awesomefest was bonkers, I only went for the Saturday with my dad, but it was unreal. The day was mixed between a general track/drift day with high speed passenger runs in the full completion spec cars used in the BDC. The Vibe alongside the Motocross track going, BMX’ers in the air and live DJ sets throughout the day was outstanding. Unfortunately Awesomefest was a one off occurrence as they never got permission to re do the event the following year. Sadly, I dont think an event that big will ever hit the UK again. This was also the first time I saw Andy drive, in the same S14 shell he’s driving today.

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I then decided to add Andy on Facebook, as much of the drifting community begins with the simple notion of a friend request. Its rare to find a drifter with no one drift related on their Facebook, it’s our way of socializing. Then BDC took place at Norfolk Arena in June 2012, where Andy and his L2D team would compete. This would be the second time I would see/photograph Andy drifting. Here is an image from that event of Andy along with his driver Jamie Kenyon.

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British Drift Championship 2012 - Round 2 Norfolk Arena

 

The team/cars have gone through many extravagant vynl jobs over the years.

The next time I would see Andy/Jamie would be at BDC Round 1 at Lydden Hill in April 2014. With yet another eye catching paint job.

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That was the last time I photographed Andy/L2D. Although I do still have him on Facebook and we have chatted a few times.

 

Recently my very good friend Callum Craddy has become an instructor at the L2D team, teaching the pupils the basics of how to drift. I’ve known Callum  for years and is the main reason i’m able to get access for this project. Callum has also recently started to compete in the BDC as part of the L2D team. He has a media channel on YouTube to which he uploads all of his GoPro footage of his times with the L2D team. Here are three videos I think are worth a watch.

 

 

 

This is one of Callums more well made video of a drift practice day at Teesside.

 

I intend to photograph the L2D team on one of their teaching days at Birmingham Wheels Raceway and try to capture the teamwork spirit and banter that goes on during their time. I also want to try to capture and promote the L2D business, as it’s growing rapidly with the help of special Groupon Deals which can be found online with the added popularity and interest of the ever growing sport that is drifting.

Birmingham Wheels Raceway

I’ve known about Birmingham Wheels raceway for a while, it’s a small, rundown oval racetrack just outside of the center of Birmingham. It’s mostly nowdays used for drifting, as well as banger racing, oval racing and lower league mini racing.

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There’s a small orginisation called Learn 2 Drift which will teach you how to basically drift a car in a very safe manor under professional supervision. I know both the owner and one of the tutors who work with the Learn 2 Drift team. Owner: Andy Arnott Instructor: Callum Craddy. They travel across the country teaching people how to drift in their fleet of cars. Such as Birmingham Wheels, Santa Pod, Brands Hatch, Skegness, Rockinham Raceway and Teeside Autrodome.

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http://www.learn2drift.com/

I think I could easily get access to photograph one of their tuition days and photograph the workers, students, pit crew and marshalls.