Congrats to all the winners and honourable mentions. A big shout out to Daniel Berman and the judges – A global awards show with world-class standards. Link to site: http://mobilephotoawards.com
“The most savage of human kind are the most advanced” Bangambiki Habyarimana
What shocks you initially about a visit to the Nazi death camp in southern Poland is the banality of the place. A banality that belies its infamous place in history as the final resting place of 1.5 million murdered souls. A pool table flat landscape is punctured by rust-coloured brick buildings and a few solitary wooden sentry towers. An intermittent sunny sky adds to the ordinariness of the place. But nothing ordinary happened here. What is extraordinary about the Nazis’ “final solution” was the precision given to the planning, implementation and industrialisation of death. On a massive scale. Cold and concise thought went into the extermination of Jews, Poles, Gypsies, homosexuals, and various religious and political communities the Nazis deemed unworthy of life. Or, indeed, dignity when living. One of the many times my blood ran cold, when visiting Auschwitz, was entering Block 11. Here prisoners were made to stand, four at a time, in a cell smaller than a telephone box – sometimes for weeks or months on end – in suffocating total darkness. There is no language to communicate the horror of block 11. Then came my visit to the gas chambers: Silence is the language of such places.
It took me a while to “process” my visit to Auschwitz-Birkenau and even longer deciding if I should process my photography documenting my visit. I had posted a couple of shots on Facebook but quickly realised the platform was inappropriate and deleted them. I had also “processed” the shots from RAW files taken with my LGG4 mobile phone. I worked on the aesthetics of photography – cropping? Black and white? Or colour? Tints? Trying to prettify my images seemed sordid in the extreme. I stopped and considered the most appropriate way to bear silent witness to the victims of the holocaust. I now publish a selection of my photos below as I shot them. RAW. 16:9 format. No cropping. No retouching. No adulteration. Just observance.
We are living in dangerous times. Crypto-fascism is on the rise again. Trump and Brexit are manifestations of the banality and reemergence of unthinking thuggery. The possibility of today’s thuggery leading to the the death of innocent millions may seem far-fetched to many. Think again. “The people can always be brought to the bidding of their leaders. All you have to do is tell them that they are in danger of being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger.” Hermann Goering. Sound familiar?
Cinemagraphs are still photographs brought to “life”. The Dublin-based creative team of Trista Vincent and Declan Byrne have commissioned me to create a suite of images for their Car’n’Stuff campaign for Liberty Insurance Ireland. Lots of fun. More to come. Click on images to see the magic. Source: Sean Hayes’s Photography Portfolio – Cinemagraphs
An honorable Chelsea Pensioner I photographed in London last year . Thank you Sir.
Link to winners: http://www.ippawards.com/2016-winners-portrait/
Someone, somewhere stated that “Good is the enemy of great”. I’ve been fiddling with my new website for weeks trying to make peace between the two. A truce was called. Time to launch myself into my “second life”. Being an advertising art director for the last 25 years has been incredibly rewarding for me – but my real passion now is photography. When you are passionate about doing something, you tend to do it well, and it shows in the work. Hopefully, my passion for photography will, in time, shine through. If you get a moment, I would appreciate you visiting the site and rummaging around. Please feel free to suggest ideas and thoughts about the site and how I could make it better. Good enough may be the enemy of great, but the will to get better is your best weapon in the fight to do great work.
Link to site: http://seanhayesphotography.format.com
This week I was working as an ‘extra’ on the Jonathan Barré film ‘La folle histoire de Max et Léon. Some of the filming is taking place in the Belgium city of Namur, and is the humorous story of two French orphans during WW2. As per usual, I decided to make a pest of myself in between takes and asked if I could photograph the portraits of some of the supporting cast and ‘extras’. Here are the results. I shot everything with the LGG4 smartphone using available light. I processed the images with the Snapseed and Picfx photo apps.
If you would like to see more of my mobile photography portraits, please visit : http://seanmobileportraits.tumblr.com