Apologies for yet another extended and unexplained absence. This time, travel plus a slight diversion into alternative sources of photo publishing has been the reason. In the last few months I have made a quite complicated trip to Italy, and another long trip to SE Asia, with little time back in the UK to do anything except admin stuff. I took complete photographic systems on both trips, and the SE Asia one in particular was a full fledged photo expedition. Also since the last post I have taken a course on what the DLW calls ‘Queasypiks’ (for reasons that will be explained later), and that style of photography has engaged me quite a bit.
As I mentioned in the last piece I posted here (in May!), I have formulated a rationale for where and how I publish photographs, using Flickr for single shots, and these pages for series of photographs. I have published quite a lot on Flickr as a result, including some early images from Italy and SE Asia, and I have to admit, it’s quite a seductive forum, as the feedback is immediate, and so far, very kind. That has, I am ashamed to say, taken my eye off this particular ball. But Flickr has it’s limitations. Flickr users don’t like people shots very much. and they don’t like series either. It has to be one arresting, landscapey or cityscapey image. I have done quite a few of these kind of images specially for Flickr that I am reasonably pleased with as a result. But I like people shots and I like series, or photoessays as well, and I have quite a few backed up. So I am returning to the web site to publish these over the next few months, along with more non-picture articles and essays.
Today’s photographs are an essay about Cape Town City on the day of Nelson Manuela’s funeral. Mandela’s body had lain in state in Pretoria, with various memorial events held by the great and the ‘good’. Some of these reached levels of farce (such as Obama’s spectacularly incompetent translator) that astonished the world if not the weary South Africans. By the following Sunday the ANC’s posturing and disorganization was tarnishing the solemnity of the occasion. On that day however, the state came good and did a pretty magnificent, if long-winded job of laying Madiba to rest. The funeral took place in Qunu, Mandela’s birthplace and ancestral home, but in Cape Town and other major cities, the events were televised live to huge screens in the centre of town. The shots that follow were taken during the day outside City Hall in Cape Town, and show a marked contrast to the memorial service the previous week. There was marked and genuine grief on this day, and the mourners and spectators, of all races showed dignity and quiet sorrow at Madiba’s passing. It had a profound impact on me and others, and for a brief moment, it looked as though it might reset the course of the South African nation. Sadlly mendacity and greed prevailed, and the country is back on the rickety path to a Mugabe inspired future. But it was a great day nonetheless.
So here are the photographs. As usual, instructions on viewing them are at the end of the post.
Mandela's funeral - the scene in Cape Town
To View: If you have Flash the photos are best seen in full screen (press FS in the bottom right hand corner), and in slide show ( press SL). If you don’t have Flash, i.e if you are using an Apple iPad/Pod/Phone, or a Nexus 7/10 tablet, or any Android tablet running 4.1 +, you can now see them as well. Just click any of the thumbnails and a full screen slide-show should start. Information on each photo can be seen by clicking on the ‘i’ symbol in the upper right corner of the screen show.