Hopefully you can see from the image above why they nicknamed this Somerset beach resort "Weston- Super- Mud". It gets a Bad Rap in my opinion that I don't think it deserves, in fact I'm going to call it simply "Super" from now on, partly because it allowed me to make some pretty good photos. Now, if you know me or have read this blog before you'll know that it's rare, and for that read never, that I actually like any of my images, on this trip I did. Why the nickname? Okay, the tide goes a long way out so if you wan't a swim then you'll generally have to walk miles to reach the sea and if you do manage that feat then you'll need to consider the sinking mud. Let's make believe that you didn't suffer from exhaustion once arriving at the Briny, you take a dip and don't have a cardiac arrest (believe me any sea around the British coast is like plunging into Liquid Nitrogen), or drown once in it from the riptides, you're doomed because you'll get stuck in the sinking mud on the way back and die. This is a shame because you could have sat quite peacefully on Weston's beautiful sands, walked the wide promenade or taken a stroll along the Grand Pier -
I know, there's a certain clientele and people often think they're far too posh to enjoy it, but I think it's a bit like Las Vegas in that you just need to accept all the trashiness of the place and enjoy it. I believe you really would enjoy Weston-Super-Mare by the way, hey, if it was good enough for Banksy to put on his "Dismaland Bemusement Park" exhibition there; then it's good enough for you and me. I hope you didn't look at that link for too long because we've got some photography to get through here, yes it isn't on the scale and talent of that gifted artist, but...well, after looking at that I'm beginning to regret the statement earlier where I said it was "pretty good"! Let's have a look at some of the people enjoying a week day trip to Weston.
I'm not entirely sure about people kissing in photos, a bit of an invasion into what essentially is an intimate moment between two people. Oh well, as we're at a British seaside resort, home of Hats emblazoned with "Kiss Me Quick", I thought this was acceptable.
We've gone all Black & White here. I think it suits most situations, we all know my views, but in the bright midday summer sun it's practically perfect. Then occasionally I like the colourfulness of it all, some colourful language almost from this guy, I know what he was thinking and the second word was "Off", can't say I blame him!
For a while I was thinking about layers, which we've discussed before. Extremely difficult to get right and in reality see in the first place. I made a little effort, here's a few, afterwards I made a decision -
The Decision; I've been trying so many different techniques lately, styles that are best suited to those that excel at it. I'm not a close up kind of a photographer, never have been, I prefer to capture a scene; traditional, old fashioned it might be, but it's my style. I sat thinking about this and a guy with a Leica came over for a chat. I talked and talked about photography, Social Media, Photo Platforms, Leica, Canon and eventually he made his excuses and left, I suspect he may have regretted coming over to say hello! Anyway, I relaxed and simply captured some scenes -
I really like that one with the couple sat looking out to sea with the mini lake behind them.
Weston-Super-Mare is famous for it's Donkey Rides. Please don't worry about the Donkey's, they are extremely well looked after, operated by respected and experienced firms and are only riden by very small children. A couple of photos -
I strolled down the beach a little way. Two hours is enough Street/Life photography in my opinion, I begin to get tired and with that goes my concentration. Only 40 miles from home, but the roads are narrow and windy, the journey takes around an hour and a half. Great news for a biker, we love those twisty', but you need to have your wits about you. So I headed back to where I'd parked the bike calling it a day, until the Aquarium loomed in front of me and you can see that once closer and underneath it a photo opportunity awaits that begs to be taken -
There were a group of mums with toddlers playing around once I did get closer. They gave me a glance and I explained immediately that it might look a bit strange , but all I was after was something other than them or their offspring. One lady said she understood perfectly, clearly a photographer. So, there she was sitting alone and I made a couple of shots -
Can't make my mind up which I prefer, the one above or this one -
I like the sandcastle and the loneliness of the woman and yet in the second shot the man in the frame with the island...as they say "No man is an Island", unless your name is Barry of course (I just remembered, that's a very British joke - Barry Island is a place in Wales). Anyway, that was a lot of photos and I apologise for not only taking up too much of your time, but also for that joke!
All images can be opened by clicking on the thumbnails and are taken using a Leica M with a Summicron 35mm lens fitted.