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Bruce Gilden at work

For our photography class at uni this week, we took to the streets of Belfast. We were shown some examples of Bruce Gilden’s work, informed that there is no legal restriction on photography in public places and told to go out and get snapping.

Street photography is something a lot of people are misinformed about. The most common retaliation we received was “Hey, you’re meant to ask for my permission first!” It’s generally assumed that it’s illegal to photograph without consent. However there is no presumption of privacy for individuals in a public place at all. If you’re outside, you’re fair game for any photographer.

Regardless of the legalities though, if you snap their picture, there’s a chance they’ll snap back. We encountered a few people who really didn’t want their picture taken and wouldn’t hold back in telling you so. To be honest though, you can’t blame them, it’s undoubtedly intrusive to give no warning and just take their picture, especially at a close range and with the flash on.

If street photography is meant to be observing true moments, candidly and unstaged then it’s not really possible to capture that the same way if you give warning. Looking back, it feels mad that I partook in this. I can’t think of a time before this where I just took the shot without knowing or asking the person first. I had to get close to my subjects as I didn’t have a zoom lens and that was nerve-wracking. Here are a couple of the photographs I got that day.

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I haven’t written here properly in such a long time. You probably feel like you don’t know me anymore. I’ll catch you up. I’m in final year now of Design for Visual Communication and we have just finished the third week.

Last year I was lucky to get a placement opportunity at Genesis advertising and I worked there for a year, finishing up the end of August. The time just flew in. I got to work and be involved in projects for First Trust Bank, Firmus Energy, PSNI, Spar, HSENI, Kestrel and Invest NI. The time flew in and I got to work with some really nice people. It was a great year. It’s not everyone from the company but you can see most of us in the photo below. I’m in the middle with the big beaming smile.

What else have I been up to? I did a sky dive, moved house, went shark diving, had a few hair cuts, appeared in an ad campaign, had The best party in a barn, visited Edinburgh, London and Dublin, took bollywood and hip hop dance classes, and I’m sure there’s been more happen too.

I’m going to start writing on here again more so prepare to see some more posts soon.

Had another cycling adventure today. It’s a great way to lift your spirits. Had my ipod on shuffle and enjoyed an eclectic mix of french glitch hop, indie, instrumental and singer/songwriter. I took these few pictures. I magically look about…8, maybe even 10 years younger than I am in that shot. Funny thing is I’m going out tonight and I probably won’t get ID’d. I possess a super age-shifting appearance power, clearly. This week I bought myself cycling gloves. Next week – a bell! I saw too many shocked pedestrian faces on the towpath today. Martina, the silent cyclist, will be no more.

It’s Polish Cultural Week in Belfast at the moment. This is it’s fifth year and there are events, exhibitions and concerts happening in town. Yesterday I went to the Taste of Polska and enjoyed a Polish hot dog and some other pieces. Just like at the Festival of Colours event the other month, there were bollywood dancers. I’ve since discovered Bollywood is quite big in Poland, learning something new every day and all that. It looks very fun, I’m seriously tempted to learn it myself. There were some great craft stalls and a drum workshop, all in all, a great day! Until the 17th of May there is a photographic exhibtion by Polish photographer Tomasz Tomaszewski in the Red Barn Gallery on Rosemary street, you should check it out. For a full listings of events happening in Belfast, check here. There’s a lot going on!