Shutterings and Mutterings

Lastest blog posts

Beowulf Mayfield at the pianoMusic for Blue Monday

Like many people out there, I find the dark, cold days of winter difficult. To brighten up everyone's winter I've created a music video that I hope will raise the mood on the darkest days of the year. Watch and listen here...

A Long Road Back

Bluebells photographed with a pinhole camera

Lockdown was hard and recovering it has been even harder - having spent the best part of year on the sofa reading, learning to teach through Zoom calls and writing lecture notes, I'm finding it very hard to leap up and get outside unless I have to go somewhere. It's really sapped my energy levels and I'm going to have to walk a long, heard road to get back to pre-lockdown energy and enthusiasm. Getting out to photograph bluebells for the first time in three years or so was a good excuse to get myself out and revisit pinhole photography... Read the blog post.

Saluting the Unknown Warrior

Photo of a saluting toy soldier

To mark the centenary of the burial of the Unknown Warrior in Westminster Abbey I decided to extend my toy soldier photography project. The light wasn't great but it was rewarding to take pictures and capture video footage. Read the blog post.

Quick Snaps on a Sunny Day

Cover of A Quick Walk in the Park ezine

It's May 2020 and the UK remains in lockdown against the vile Covid-19 pandemic. The general rule of thumb is travel as little as necessary so I'm still restricted to photographing stuff in the immediate neighbourhood. It's a bit of challenge finding fresh things in streets you've walked down thousands of times but that doesn't mean you should stop looking... Read post.

New nonsense from old wisdom

Cover of Stolen Lines ezine

It's the middle of May 2020 and the UK remains in lockdown against the cruelty of Covid-19. Social media and comment forums seem to be awash with danger denial and political division which is not good for the mind. It's better to do something creative... Read post.

Words going wild

Covers of Antonin & his Double and Cut Up Times ezines

It is the beginning of May 2020, the UK lockdown against the Coronavirus is entering its sixth week and the free time has allowed my mind to explore fresh corners of curious creativity. The latest things to come into fruition are a short, but very strange, piece for theatre based on Antonin Artaud and a small collection of cut-up poetry... What will the lockdown bring next? Read post

An e-zine bonanza

Zine covers created by Beowulf Mayfield

During the April 2020 UK lockdown I've become intrigued by zine making - I've helped to keep myself sane by making three ezines for free web distribution for anyone who would like to download them and lift the lockdown blues... Read post

Once Round the Park

Cover of Once Round the Park and Back ebook

Social media friends have been encouraging me to keep taking photographs while the UK is in lockdown. So I took may camera around my nearby park and shot some of the things I noticed while walking. When I got home I put the 12 best into an ebook to share with the world... Read post

A Zine for Lockdown

One Day In Lockdown zine

With the UK in lockdown against coronavirus I've had a lot of time on my hands and a lot of that time has been spent absorbing digital media. However, too much screen time can lead to want to scream time so it's good to step away from the digital world and produce something physical. What did I do? I made up a silly poem, devised an even sillier design and printed it out to make myself a zine. Best of all, I'm sharing it - you too can download a copy to print out and fold into your own little mini booklet... Read post

Toys Salute Real Heroes

Lead toy soldier playing bugle with the Artillery Memorial, London, in the background

I wanted to create something to honour the centenary of the Armistice that brought an end to fighting on the Western Front on November 11, 1918...Read post

Fun for your wall

Pants in the name of protest

Photo of paper cut out figures holding up a washing line bearing pants and socks

Some of the greatest works of art have been inspired by real events and a protest over washing lines in the town of Colyton, Devon, has inspired me to produce some artwork... Read post

Playing along with the world

Pinhole photo of toy football players by Beowulf Mayfield

Since 2001, the last Sunday in April has been Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day. The idea is that pinhole photographers across the world take a photograph on the day and upload it to a huge online gallery... Read post

A Ghostly Challenge

Cover of Ghost Music by Billy Jenkins. Photograph by Beowulf Mayfield

What's the dream of a photographer who loves music? Apart from producing an expensive book that sells millions of copies and rakes in obscene wads of cash? Simple: a commission to take an album cover photo... Read post

Music for Christmas Past

Vintage carol singers photographed by Beowulf Mayfield

Every year I think I should get myself organised to create a festive photograph and print out a few cards. Usually I don't think of it early enough but this year a chance find gave me an idea... Read post

The seaside staple

Seaside windmill against a blue sky by Beowulf Mayfield

For some reason, just about every time I go to the seaside on a sunny day I buy a toy windmill, the more colourful the better, and take a set of blurred motion pictures. Once I've finished I give it away - usually to a family with a young kid in tow... Read post.

Zooming in on the subject

Pink flowers distorted with zoom burst by Beowulf Mayfield

Dull conditions are common if you live in Britain and there are times when you just have to make the best of it. However, low light is good for working with zoom burst, the process of twisting a zoom lens during a relatively short exposure... Read post

Camera shake in the woods

Woodland scene blurred by intentional camera movement photographed by Beowulf Mayfield

For me, woodland photography is an exercise in coping with low light. If I feel strong, I carry a tripod for long exposure work. If not, I slow the shutter down anyway and indulge in a little intentional camera movement (ICM)... Read post

Beautiful to see and hear

Busker playing African flute photographed by Beowulf Mayfield

When I encounter musicians playing in the street, the former musician in me starts judging the quality of their musical performance - or lack of it. However, these days I also find myself considering how I might like to photograph them... Read post

Spring beauty with jagged edges

Multiframe picture of tree with pink blossom

Every spring the web becomes flooded with pictures of trees adorned in pink and white blossom. It's a welcome relief after the misery of winter to see the spring blooms but how to make your picture stand out from the rest? I tried going lo-fi with a plastic camera, a roll of cheap film and a bit of fooling about with Photoshop... Read post

It's pinhole derby day

Pinhole black and white photograph of vintage toy racehorse

Toys are excellent for pinhole photography subjects - they don't mind sitting still for hours on end and they don't complain that you've made them look fat. Pinhole photography lets you get really close up on the miniature world...Read post

Marching with stop animation

Catford Broadway video thumbnail showing toy saxophone player being chased by a toy tiger cub

Stop animation has always interested me and I had the idea of creating an animation using toy military bandsmen to illustrate a track by the great guitarist and composer Billy Jenkins. I set about photographing a mixed bunch of toys and pieced them together to produce a minute of animated musical anarchy using simple iMovie software. It took a bit of patience but it was fun...Read post

Impressionism with a Lensbaby

Ladybird poppies photographed by Beowulf Mayfield using a Lensbaby Muse

The world is full of razor sharp, perfectly-exposed floral pictures - you have to put in a lot of careful work to compete with these at the best of times. If you're working in a crowded space, poor light and a tripod is right out of the question, it's time to try a different way of getting the picture... Read post

Winding back to film

When I bought my first digital camera it looked like I'd given up film for good. If someone had said I'd be using film again within five years I would have laughed at them until they cried. It turned out film was far from dead... Read post

Motoring with flash

Toy red racing car in motion photographed by Beowulf Mayfield

For years I thought flash was simply something you used to compensate for bad light. Flash guns cost money and on-board flash seemed to make people look startled and turned their eyes red. However, all that changed when I finally read a book about flash techniques and began to unlock their creative power... Read post

Sites Worth Seeing

Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day: Guide to the worldwide day for promoting pinhole photography with galleries of contributions since 2001. Visit site.

Lomography: Lomography is a producer of curious cameras, funky film and a celebration of creative analogue photography. Visit site.

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