Category: Randoms

A photograph 10 years and 1.3 Billion Euros in the making – Rosetta’s Comet from 177 Miles – NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Things for which I am grateful #32

Again, not exactly within the remit of this blog, but good ideas are always worth sharing. I love advertising ideas that take what is familiar about our world and turn them into the unfamiliar. These kind of ideas grab our attention and makes us re-evaluate our preconceived notions and biases that we all possess: in this particular case; the plight of the homeless. The ‘Big Idea’ in advertising has unfortunately fallen out of favour due to the relentless onslaught from digital marketing platforms that favour the rather ominously titled ‘Big Data’ ; where algorithms, instead of the art of seduction, are employed by advertisers to separate you from your hard-earned cash. More’s the pity. Ideas that have a powerful insight can literally move mountains. The conceptual art director of the above campaign, David Milligan-Croft, came up with an idea that moved hearts. And minds. And ultimately wallets. That takes talent. Talent that is, sadly, hemorrhaging from the business on a daily basis. To be replaced by – robots :-/


Alas, it is not an idyllic croft by the ocean…

…but, a roof.

Over my head.

And, on days like today, when it’s blowing a howling gale and lashing with rain, it makes one feel all the more grateful.

Apparently, there are about 380,000 people in Britain who don’t have this luxury.

When I lived in Ireland I worked on a guerilla campaign for a homeless charity called Focus Ireland. The idea was based on using the plaques where famous people lived and doctoring them, using real people’s names, and placing them on the streets where homeless people slept rough. The concept being: Everyone has a right to a home.

It was hugely successful in terms of raising money and awareness.

N.B. Plaques in Ireland are brown unlike the blue ones in the UK.

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Randoms: Après Cézanne © Sean Hayes

Cézanne painting photography

Après Cézanne © Sean Hayes (2012)

The more I go back over my archived photographic files selecting images for the ‘Randoms’ category, the more I realise that my work is heavily influenced by my love of fine art painting. In particular, the paintings of the French Impressionists from the 1870’s onwards. The Impressionists painted light rather than form. This painterly effect of spontaneity and effortless hid a well-crafted allegiance to carefully constructed composition. Impressionists were condemned by the art establishment at the time for their slapdash approach to painting – being far too vivid in colour and lacking discipline of technique. Paul Cézanne is one painter from this period that I have always admired. Though not strictly an ‘Impressionist’, his early work certainly adhered to the movements philosophy of rendering, in paint, the ‘sensation’ of something rather than its form. Both Matisse and Picasso were in awe of his talent and heavily influenced their early work as they transformed the radical modernism of Impressionism into a more Cubist aesthetic. Hope you like my photographic homage to Cézanne – and should you like the image enough to want a pristine print on your wall, please write to me at and we’ll chat about print sizes, prices and shipping arrangements. Thank you for your visit.

Paul Cézanne Painting

The Basket of Apples
1890–1894 by Paul Cézanne

Randoms: Rust © Sean Hayes (2010)

Rust Still Life

Rust © Sean Hayes (2010)

What is it about rust that is so photogenic? I found these two unemployed implements, looking sorry for themselves in an equally distressed looking backyard in La Louvière – a small post-industrial city in the south of Belgium. Now that I look at the image again, it could very well be a perfect metaphor for the declining fortunes of a once thriving and prosperous city. During the late 19th and early 20th century, La Louvière was the most important city in the Wallonia region of southern Belgium due to the coal mining wealth it generated. It has degenerated into disrepair in recent years. I have likened the fortunes of the city to that of another city with a glorious industrial past – the American city of Detroit. Both have fallen victim to some rust belt tightening of late. I wonder what the digital rust-free future has in store for both cities.

Randoms: Stillness © Sean Hayes (2010)

Portmarnock Beach Ireland

Stillness © Sean Hayes (2010)

From time to time, I will post an image from my archives that does not fall under any specific theme or subject. The above photograph was shot on a quiet beach on the north side of Dublin Ireland. For me, it conjures up the stillness of the moment. No wind. No rain. Quite unusual for Ireland 🙂 Hope you like it – and should you like the image enough to want a pristine print on your wall, please write to me at and we’ll chat about print sizes, prices and shipping arrangements. Thank you for your visit.