Suggestions for Photographic themes in Ireland?

Discussion in 'Travel' started by randall cherry, Sep 19, 2005.

  1. Hi All,

    I have another question relating to my driving tour of the southern
    and western coasts of Ireland mentioned in previous threads:

    Does anyone have any suggestions for subject themes to photograph?
    I have seen series of photographs from other photographers showing
    themes such as "cottage doors," "pubs," "window boxes," etc.
    Although I already have some themes in mind, it would be great to
    hear other peoples ideas, as well.


  2. My Neighbor, Liz O'Brien (who is not Irish),husband took around 30 photos of her standing
    in front of
    Pubs that where named O'Brien.What about sheep?
  3. People with interesting faces.

    (especially in County Leitrim)


    (Who has a house in Leitrim)
  4. Hello Randall,

    I live and work in S.W. Ireland. I have lived in many other places too.

    Anyhow, I think that environmental portraits are my thing, I love people. I use a Fuji 69 rangefinder for that. Many old wrinkly faces here that will smile while you shoot, then scowl when you leave!
    The famous photo of Samuel Becket in B+W always comes to mind.
    Also plenty of new faces from Poland, Lithuania, Bulgaria, Nigeria, etc. All these new faces are wonderful to see here, on an island remote in it's ways. Take a photo of the heir to Bantry house. He is an average looking dude who walks about in a flat cap like a worker, his house and grounds are really worth photographing, his interest in the arts makes him quite approachable too.

    The light here is strong in U.V. and very changeable. Many painters come for the light.

    Farmers are not great subjects, nor are sheep or cows, in my opinion.

    There are plenty of stone ruins, and ancient wedge tombs, stone beehive huts, and the people around them. Modern Ireland is a strange thought, don't think it exists yet. Some folk build very fancy holiday houses here and have fancy yachts, things are changing.

    I was given a first edition of a book by an American photographer, David Plowden, whose ''subject theme'' was American barns, very good photos. I thought of doing Irish stone ruins with my Fuji 69, not sure I want to yet.

    "cottage doors," "pubs," "window boxes," leave me looking at postcards in the tourist shop, can't say I need to see more.

    Alcohol is a real problem in Ireland, as is depression amongst the young males. Perhaps that would be worth documenting, somehow.
    I find the Irish quite shy but there is always a way to get a snap.

    Document the arts and crafts of Ireland today? I'd say most of those people involved are not Irish, but worth a photo. Oh yeah, photograph the musicians here too.

    The roads here are poor so leave loads of time in hand for that.
    Your photo of old town Alexandria has Irish colours, the humour is missing in Ireland though.

    Photograph workers in a stone quarry splitting stone with sledge hammers 8 hours a day, the steam rising into the mists on the hills.

    Ireland is a place where people want to know who you are, although they may never actually understand who you are.....So, I think my suggestions for subject themes to photograph in Ireland would be..................... environmental portraits.

  5. Thanks for all the repsonses!

    Ben: what did you mean by "Ireland is a place where people want to know who you are, although they may never actually understand who you are . . ."? Also, do you have a suggestion on where to buy medium format film?

  6. Hi Randall, in recent times many new faces have come here. For example, my workmate is a Bulgarian guy, very very strong. So, there are many new faces here, the Irish living here have been very ''curious'' in the past about new faces, less so now. I love new faces and learning from them. The Irish may not ''understand'' Bulgarian, or Ukranian, or Nigerian, or any of the many other languages being spoken here, but they are interested and welcoming, mostly. Anyhow, Irish is a tricky language too! There are huge cultural divides but I think things are working out, the eastern blood is very strong and there are jobs here. Tonight I met Latvians, Ukranians, and a few irish too. I learned new words and enjoyed the company. Anyhow, All I was saying is that Ireland was very self contained for many years, now the new faces come from new places, and hence there is new blood in the country, that is good.

    Medium format film in Ireland? Tricky, Cork city tends not to have any, at all. I found some 120 in Dublin, I bought Provia 400 for my Fuji 69. Better bring what you need I'd say.

    I wish you a very good vacation here.

  7. Ben,

    Thanks for the thoughtful answers. I will keep my eyes open for interesting and friendly people, and also bring a huge amounts of film with me. I am hoping I can get it developed in Dublin before traveling back to the States.


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