It’s a mad, mad world…

After my little jaunt to the park to shoot some deer, I popped into town for a spot of inspiration – aiming to visit a couple of exhibitions and mooch around some design shops for some gift ideas.

First up: the World Press Photo exhibition at the Royal Festival Hall…  Its open from now until December 5th and it free entry so I recommend popping in to have a look if you are in the area (nip up to Skylon for a cocktail or some food afterwards – one of my favourite locations in our fair city).

Anyway, press photography is of course about telling a story rather than necessarily just getting a great image – and it has to be said, that some of the stories in our mad, mad world that need telling are grim, gruesome and downright disgusting – and therefore, when captured in a photograph are equally shocking and horrific.  Luckily there are also some fun and quirky stories that need telling – and stories that connect people across great distances; geographically and or culturally.  So however much I understand the need for the former  – it’s the photos depicting the latter that capture my attention and that I will be sharing with you here. 

Tokyo Subway Dream, Michael Wolf

"Tokyo Subway Dream", Michael Wolf, World Press Photo 2010

This picture, although taken in Tokyo (where a mere 8.38 million use the underground daily compared to London’s 3.4 million travellers), will still strike a chord with all underground commuters in any city anywhere in the world. 

You can’t help but share this woman’s resignation to the daily anguish that is a packed, steamy train carriage during rush hour… 

Now at the moment I must admit that I am spared the regular trials and tribulations of fighting with the tourists and their endless rucksacks and suitcases on the Piccadilly line and the madness that is Holborn station (experience rush hour there on a rainy weekday evening and you’ll know what I mean) – but I still feel her pain!

2010 Rose Bowl, Mark Holtzman, World Press Photo

2010 Rose Bowl, Mark Holtzman, World Press Photo

Sport, nationalism & the military?

Only in America!  

I’ve experienced this myself at an NHL ice-hockey match in San Jose when before the regular season game between the Sharks and the Avalanche they played the national anthem with the video of USAF F15’s on the jumbotron.  This would of course never, ever happen at a European sporting event – probably not even during international fixtures. 

But this picture shows, in the most ostentatious way possible, just how much a part of the American Dream both nationalism and the military are.  Not sure I understand it myself, but it does make for a fun photo!

England at Play, Simon Roberts, World Press Photo

"England at Play", Simon Roberts, World Press Photo

Now this is more like it – a series of fabulous photos showing everything that is great (and quite a bit that is not) about the recreational pursuits of the English.

We English by Simon Roberts is a series of photographs that placed 3rd in the category Daily Life.  

This is my type of storytelling!

But don’t just take my word for it – view all of the winners in the online gallery or visit the exhibition yourself!

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