A Quarter Hour of Fame

DIFuVs5WsAEYm76.jpg-largeWell, probably not even that, If I’m honest.

This post is really just to blow the dust off this blog, which has somehow managed to remain idle for three months. There are new posts coming soon, I promise – providing the weather on my upcoming trip to the Alps is kind.

If you follow my other blog (here), you’ll know that I’m a pretty competitive person. We athletes tend to be. It’s a key part of the job description, of course. However, in terms of my photography, competition has very seldom entered into it. I shouldn’t think I’ve ever entered more than three or four competitions in my life. Be that as it may, I’ve won two!

My local council recently asked via social media for some photos of Maidstone. I’d recently tidied up a collection of stuff I’d taken in late 2016 and early 2017 that were lingering on my iPhone. I sent them four of these and promptly forgot all about it. Social media is like that. So, I was quite surprised, at the end of August, when they contacted me to say I’d won their “Love Maidstone” competition with the photo you see at the top of this blog. I found out there was a decent prize too!

The photo looks across the Millennium footbridge over the Medway. The building in it is part of the complex that houses the gym I belong to. It’s a little piece of Maidstone I see quite often. I photographed it again recently, and only when I compared that shot to the competition winner did I notice the rather ugly crane in the background of the earlier shot!


My first, and only other competition winner, by the way, was way back in 1994, when “Amateur Photographer” magazine was after photos on the theme of autumn. I’d been in the Derbyshire Peak District a few weekends previously, and had a shot I thought fitted the brief. This one:

Froggatt Woods 4 11 94

Of course, “beauty is in the eye of the beholder” as it is said. Or was said in Greece in the 3rd century BC. I had to look it up. I thought it was Shakespeare, but wasn’t sure! Never let it be said this blog isn’t an education. It’s probably the reason I don’t regard competitions as worth the effort: too hit and miss to bother with. A great example of this was a photo I saw very recently in a local camera club show in a local shopping centre. These things always make me shudder. This one certainly did.

Someone had painted a “faithful” copy of JMW Turner’s “The Fighting Temeraire”. Quite why, we were never told. However, it was hardly “faithful” and had been rendered in a ghastly pale blue tone. How do I know this? Well, because a member of said camera club had then photographed the copy of the Turner painting… and had actually entered this into the camera club show….and won a prize. Put your ear to the ground in St Paul’s Cathedral. The churning sound you can hear will be old JMW turning in his grave.


My blog title this time comes from Andy Warhol, via the Albion Band.


About tomsprints

I am a Masters athlete and freelance photographer living in Kent, in Great Britain. I'm a sprinter. As well as competing, my camera and I work regularly for the British Masters Athletics Federation and the European and World Masters Athletics organisations. For pleasure, I'm (principally) a landscape photographer. I have been blessed with the chance of spending quite a lot of time in the European Alps in the last 30 years. My web site is a vehicle for a my photographic work, and is at http://www.tomphillipsphotos.co.uk I run two blogs. One is about what it's like to be an older athlete ( http://tomsprints.wordpress.com ) and the other is basically about my photography ( https://ablogscape.wordpress.com ), although they often overlap.
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