We have lots of Autumn colours to appreciate now, but do we have time to appreciate them? I saw one of my neighbours children going to school really early one morning and found that some are leaving for school at 7 in the morning. Why? They have to go to the best school. No, not a private school like David Cameron. They’re not aspiring to be rich toffs are they?
My local readers will recognise the shop in today’s picture. Teddy Grays is famous in the Black Country. They sell a delicious selection of sweets. When an International student visited me last Christmas, I gave her mice made of sugar from Teddy Grays, Cadbury’s miniatures and a few other delights that we used to find in our Christmas stockings as children. We’re never too old for Teddy Grays…
I went to Bilston Craft Gallery on Thursday and it was much better than I thought it would be. My photographs didn’t turn out as well as I hoped, but I did get some decent ones. It’s a nice Victorian building with interesting gardens. Some of the exhibits are crafts, but most I would describe as works of art.
It’s Sunday again and the weather doesn’t look too good. I try to have a day out on a Sunday taking photographs, but the weather often lets me down. I thought about heading in the direction of West Bromwich to photograph buildings again. I could have another go at getting the whole of The Public on to one photo. (more…)
The majority of people in the UK saw themselves as ‘working class’ at one time. The class structure of society was clear, the doctors, teachers and administrators were middle class, the aristocracy was upper class and the people who did the real work were working class. Now it’s more confused.
There are still a lot of Victorian buildings in this area and they are worth photographing. I remember walking down this street many years ago on Christmas Eve. I could hear the Salvation Army band playing Christmas carols around the corner. It felt like I was travelling through time to the England of Charles Dickens. Darlaston is still quite Dickensian… (more…)
There can be many reasons for taking photographs. It can be to create art, for nostalgic reasons, to preserve history or just for the fun of it.
The Black Country isn’t really known for it’s beauty, but even here we have little pockets of what appears to be countryside at first glance. In reality it’s the remnants of our industrial past and nature is repossessing it. I don’t think the new HS 2 rail line will become a thing of beauty in years to come. It will destroy a lot of beauty. (more…)
Bonjour! I’ve just found out, I have a couple of readers in France, so I thought I would say hello. For the benefit of my overseas readers, I’ll remind you all that I live in the heart of England. The Black Country is a just North of Birmingham and includes the City of Wolverhampton, Dudley, Walsall and Sandwell. (more…)
According to the ONS, we are now much happier, cheered up by the Olympics and the Jubilee last year. Married couples are happier than single people, apparently. I can imagine some graduate researcher knocking the door of an unmarried mother in the Black Country and asking if she’s happy, just after she’d applied the Anusol to her latest tattoo.
Today’s picture is of the Grapes Pool, just outside Bilston. Someone drove a car into it this week. I suppose it’s easy done. Who are we to judge? A guy was convicted in Walsall for soliciting a prostitute (kerb crawling). He had a prostitute in his car and went to a cash machine to get some money. Who are we to judge?
I went to Wednesbury carnival on Saturday. I took quite a lot of photographs and met up with family members. I think local events are important for community spirit and they benefit the local economy. There were other events around the Black Country at other parks.
I like photographing derelict buildings and Victorian buildings. This is in red and blue brick and is a pump house on the canal in Tipton. The half marathon ran past here on Saturday. It seems a shame to let it decay like this.
The Birmingham Black Country half marathon was run yeserday morning. They were running down the tow path of the canal. It was a time trial, it’s a bit difficult to run a marathon on a tow path; not too much room to spread out. Someone went in the canal last time trying to overtake! The run went through Sheepwash nature reserve past the balancing lake. At least it’s a bit scenic and a pub at the finish line… (more…)
For the benefit of local readers and new readers, I live in Wednesbury, in the heart of the Black Country. So called because of the coal and industry. It was said to be black by day and red by night. I remember the red by night when the furnaces were opened. I remember the bronchitis from the smoke too.
Today’s photo was taken yesterday with my new Nikon camera in Wednesbury. Today we have a meeting in the Brunswick park of the local history group. There is also the Walsall Arts Fest at White Lion in Walsall. The weather isn’t looking too good yet though. I’ll try to go. I think the Arts Fest could attract a crowd. (more…)
I watched a programme on TV last night about the Summer Exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts. It was all very posh and the artists that were accepted were so privileged and excited. There wasn’t an Ant-and-Dec accent in the house. The Black Country didn’t seem to be represented either…
I’ve come to the end of my art week and so I thought I would start today with an artistic edit. You never know, pictures like this might be displayed in the art gallery one day. We could launch a whole new school of art from here in the Black Country. We could call it, “Flyin’ Pigs”. We could do worse…
If you are following my blog posts this week, you’ll know I’m having an art week. The region of England where I live, isn’t well known for art. It could be, but someone has to lead a new art movement. I don’t really think the local galleries will provide leadership, they don’t rate the local artists very highly. The great artists come from London, Paris, Vienna, Rome and New York, not Walsall. (more…)
Today’s photo was taken in Redhouse Park, West Bromwich, a few weeks ago. On a nice day, you could do worse than go there for a picnic. There are lots of places here in the Black Country. There’s parks, nature reserves and canals everywhere. You could even do a bit of fishing!
When I was younger, there was a lot of industry in the Black Country. Working and making money was hard, but there was also ‘easy money’. Making beer could be considered a lot easier than working in a foundry or down a mine.
I used this picture last week and it was suggested that a colour version might look better. I did a lot of editing on this, cropping it and changing it to a watercolour image. I also edited out the cars in the background again.
The weather is still very changeable in England. I need sunshine! It was a long winter and then we had snow in Spring. I want to take some photos of this beautiful landscape that we have in the Black Country.