Sunday, 22 October 2017

Finding joy and despair in life from street scene

Finding joy and despair in life from street scene

PHOTOGRAPHER David King likes to take pictures of real life.

That’s the theme of his exhibition at the Old Fire Station Gallery in Henley, which opens next Thursday and runs until February 28.

It will feature a range of contemporary black and white and colour images taken over the last few years.

David says: “My aim is to capture a moment in time — lost thoughts, moments of joy, sadness, exhilaration, loneliness or a landscape that reflects the fleeting and transient moment in which we live.

“I see absolute joy in my Tango photograph, the better for them never knowing I was ever present, exhilaration in the face of Earl Jackson as he struts on stage, dignified contemplation in the face of the Old Fish Man from Brighton and the philosophical nature of the Sunset Surfer as he walks toward the ocean.

“Street photography is also a love of mine, and though it is getting harder by the year, I still relish capturing an image like the three girls in London. Just look at those expressions!”

David, 49, who lives in Tilehurst, has been interested in photography for about 25 years and has won two competitions. He decided to try and go professional about four years ago.

He mainly uses a compact camera with a fixed lens so he can take pictures easily.

David says: “It is about capturing a moment which comes and goes and sometimes you are lucky. I am not one to stand there for a long period to try and get the perfect shot and I don’t use tripods. I always treat the pictures as one-offs.

“I took the surfer picture while I was on the pier in Bournemouth. I took three photographs and the middle one was perfect. When I look at my shots they are simple but I like them to be meaningful.

“By having a fixed lens it makes you bold because if you see something you want to take a picture you of you have to be in the right position. You have to be brave.

“The three girls is one of my favourites, they didn’t see me and I would never have got them with the look on their faces if I had asked them. This way you can take pictures of the way they really are.” David takes pictures mainly in black and white not because he wants people to think they are decorative but to make them think about the image itself.

“I don’t take pictures to be decorative,” he said. “I find that black and white pictures draw out different emotions from people. Everything, of course, is subjective, but I hope that people see what I see and take away their own things as well.

“Black and white is a purer form of photography. I do like colour now and again, such as the Tango dancers, which had to be colour because of the colour of her hair and her shoes. But black and white strips everything away to the nuts and bolts of an image. If it doesn’t hit you then nothing does. I think people see more clearly and take more from it. Also, if it’s black and white it’s got to be good!”

David produces 30 prints of each picture with prices ranging from about £49 to £240.

He sells through art markets in London and online via the global Artfinder and has sold some of his work to international buyers.

He is looking forward to his exhibition, saying: “There is nothing better than being able directly to tell the story of how I sought out and captured an image.”

l Life: Contemporary Photography, by David V King is running at the Old Fire Station Gallery from February 23 to 28.

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