lens think yorkshire

A right good idea!

Hours spent out exploring, often making images alone, and more hours spent at home processing your work and developing it in the dark room if you’re a film devotee, means photography can often be quite a solitary business. I find that’s the way of it for me. Professional documentary photographers and news agency togs will have a more engaged experience, of course – but it can still be a somewhat isolated affair, running your work as a freelancer.

So what a brilliant initiative by photographer Joanne Coates www.joannecoates.co.uk to set up Lens Think Yorkshire.

Lens Think is a bi-monthly social in Yorkshire to meet, share work, ideas, & develop photography in the North of England. Bringing ‘togs together and forging new friendships and ideas.

Went to the Sheffield social in November and had such a good time. Friendly folks working at all levels, and a relaxed night over drinks, and pictures, and stimulating talks.

Darren O’Brien www.darrenobrien.co.uk gave us an overview of his work as a news photographer, and his work when he’s out ‘in the wild’; Al Brydon www.al-brydon.com – who I’ve known through social media for a good while but had yet to actually meet – talked us through the fascinating solargraphs he’s made in recent years; and Chelsea Abbott www.chelsea-abbott.com – photographer and bruise collector – delighted in sharing her bruises with us and those of her team mates in an all-women roller derby team. A good deal of thought and conversation provoked!

And a print swap over the evening was a smashing idea. Embracing Christmas season Joanne arranged a swap: send in or bring a long a couple of your own prints, and get another  photographer’s work in return. I was lucky to get two corkers made by Jason Carden www.instagram.com/j_g_carden and Leri Norris www.flickr.com/photos/lerpix.

Great to meet some lovely folks during the night, and to finally say hello to Al and Jo.

If you’re in Yorkshire and a snapper get involved.

Facebook – Lens Think Yorkshire

Instagram – @lensthinkyorkshire

Twitter – @Lensthinkyorks 

© Chelsea Abbott


© Al Brydon


© Darren O’Brien