Deep in the Ouseburn Valley, central to Newcastle upon Tyne there is a hidden and intriguing location that, having lived there for 18 years had never ever come across… The Ouseburn Culvert.
The culvert houses the river Ouseburn that runs from all the way up past Jesmond Dene down till it meets the Tyne. The small river runs underneath Shieldfield. Once part of the valley Shieldfield is now flat having been used as a landfill site. The gap over the valley was filled in order to make the city more accessible. However under the piles of rubbish a reinforced concrete tunnel was build to carry the Ouseburn underneath. The tunnel is uninhabited an extremely eerie. In the Second World War it was used as an air raid shelter for the population of Newcastle. Although I never got into the tunnel far enough to get to the shelter I believe it is still there, and I’m extremely exited to go back and go deeper into the culvert.
Another one of Newcastle’s secrets is the Rising Sun Country Park… It’s not really a secret but I can admit I’d never been there until the other day! I went with my girlfriend Molly and we had a really lovely day. I’d recommend it to anyone looking to escape the city without actually leaving. We easily strolled around for a good 2 hours and admired the lovely scenery, as well as petting the horses and swans. It’s extremely picturesque and a really nice day out.
Not long had I been back from Iceland before I was off abroad again. This time destined for a small town in Sweden called Alvesta. I was with my sister Grace, her boyfriend Lewis and our friend Greg.
Grace and Lewis play in a band together called Transfigure. They were playing a synth/goth festival called Kalabalik and had me there doing front of house sound for them, and Greg doing a projection show!
We set off for Edinburgh very early in the morning to fly to Copenhagen, where we would catch a train to Alvesta. We had five huge luggage cases between the 4 of us! Each not containing clothes… But vintage synthesisers, bubble-wrapped relentlessly! We couldn’t afford these instruments not making the journey in one piece so the wrapping was necessary. We boarded our flight and set off on our travels, catching the planned train at Copenhagen no bother, arriving in Alvesta to be picked up and taken to the festival.
Here’s a little more writing about the Iceland Urban Outfitters shoot. Along with some of my own photos I took while I was out there. A mix of 35mm Film and iPhone 5s photography.
The moment I set foot outside the airport the air felt clean and fresh. We all boarded the long wheel based brown splitter we would be travelling in over the next 3 days. We set off driving and were warned that it was about 2 hours away but the scenery was so amazing it didn’t feel like 2 hours. We drove through fields of lava, then onto pastures, then mountains with giant waterfalls cascading over the sides. It was like nothing I had ever seen before!
We arrived at the hotel/apartments we would be staying at over the next 2 nights. We had a small meeting with the team over a beer and some dinner before drifting into natural conversation. The catering team were Iceland locals and were very informative telling me all about our surrounding area. Pointing into the distance I was shown the huge volcano that erupted in 2010. We all had an early morning and a hard day of work ahead so we went to bed and rested for tomorrow’s first day of shooting.
The first day was an amazing day. We set off in the morning early, I’d had my hair cut the previous evening so we could get away earlier. We arrived about an hour down the road at a small town called Vík it was a lovely little sea side village. I wasn’t needed for this first shot so I had a relativly relaxed time as May and Ruth two of the models I was shooting with posed in a local cafe. You’ll probably find that I actually spent most of my time when not shooting in the catering truck, which was an old 1960s Scania Truck refitted with clothes rails, and mirrors for hair and make-up. After we’d got the photo we all piled into the brown transit and headed up into the mountains followed slowly by the vintage Scania! As we went up the mountains we stopped several times to take photos. The first shot I was in was against a lunar landscape. I believe Iceland is famous for these moon-like sites. They were really eerie.
This is from the first batch of photo’s I have taken on 35mm film. This photo was taken on Hampstead Heath in London. You can see the moon shining through the cloudy sky and The Shard sticking up.
I went out to take the photo quite late and in almost pitch black darkness, thus making the exposure of this about 30 seconds. There are a few other photographs that came out quite good, but I really like the contrast between the city and sky in this photograph.
I’m planning on taking shooting on film from now on as I really like the way they turn out.
Today, I milled around Denmark street! Not actually looking to buy a guitar but I tried this Gretsch White Penguin and it was an amazing! Very smooth to play and had great response in the pick-ups. A beautiful sounding guitar!
Sitting among beautiful flowers in the 25 degree heat of Newcastle Upon Tyne, I find myself eating a wonderful breakfast of chopped apple, granola and yoghurt. I spotted a bee flying in and out of the flowers and thought I’d try and capture the moment in slow motion on my iPhone. I didn’t expect the results to be this clear. The focus is a bit of a pain, however it adds a bit of character to the footage
I imported it to my computer and into After Effects. I’d been looking at the footage on my iPhones standard Photo App. This allows you to view the footage in slow motion (dropped FPS). However in After Effects I had to mess around with Time Stretching percentages for ages. I finally figured that to match the iPhone’s playback you must Time Stretch by 400% and this drops the 120fps to 30fps. Resulting in a seamless slow motion video.
I recently borrowed my dad’s old Nikon SLR and bought myself some 35mm film. I haven’t finished the film yet thus haven’t got them developed to post. The whole analog thing got me thinking about trying to shoot some video on film too. I looked into it and it was going to be super expensive by the time I’d bought a Super8 Camera, a projector, a reel of film and had it developed. So I set out on After Effects to recreate the effect.
The footage above is the result I came up with.
I started with some old footage my friend Ellie shot for her Coursework. It was part of a film trailer and stars my mate Joss.
I then set out looking for an overlay which I found in one of tutorials I stumbled across.
Project files and all the relevant steps are in there if you want to give it a shot yourself.
I slowed my footage down by 60% which made it look more like a dodgy film, posterised the time to 18fps to make it more realistically jittery.
The only thing I would do differently would be to render the video at a higher resolution.