PhotoBeast

The Photography Blog from Beastmaster.co.uk


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Weekly Photo Challenge: One

Elgar

This week’s Photo Challenge from The Daily Post is on the theme of ‘One” – http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/12/20/photo-challenge-one/

Elgar is perhaps the most famous son of Malvern and he stands proudly alone as a statue in the centre of Malvern looking down on the post office, which in his day was a piano shop.

Elgar and the Malvern Hills

Sir Edward Elgar, renowned composer of, for example, the Pomp and Circumstance marches (one of which was set to words as Land of Hope and Glory) was born near Worcester and lived in and around the Malvern Hills during his life.  Visitors to the region often follow the Elgar Route or Elgar Trail, taking in such places as his birthplace (now a museum), the music shop that his father owned, and the various places he taught and lived later in life.  Indeed there are prominent statues of Elgar in Worcester High Street, Malvern Church Street and near Hereford Cathedral.

Certainly the Malvern Hills and surrounding countryside inspired his music – he lived in sight of the hills for about 55 of his 76 years and routinely cycled around the country and village lanes during that time.

The large Post Office in Great Malvern was a piano shop in the Victorian times. Elgar used to give regular piano and violin lessons here and this is where he taught a pupil called Caroline Alice Roberts. They fell in love and married three years later, much to the horror of her family who disinherited her for marrying a Roman Catholic, unknown musician.

In 1903 Elgar founded the Malvern Concert Club with Arthur Troyte Griffith, a local architect, as his enthusiastic secretary.  The loyal support of the membership has enabled the club to flourish over all these years, with current numbers running at over 450 and often with 600 people attending concerts.

Elgar died from cancer in 1934 and is buried in St Wulstan’s Church in Little Malvern, along with his wife Alice who had died earlier.

Source: http://www.malvernbeacon.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=13&Itemid=14


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Weekly Photo Challenge : Community

The Berlin Wall

This week’s photo challenge from the Daily Post is on the theme of community and you can see the original challenge here http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/12/13/photo-challenge-community/.

Today we were at RAF Cosford for a car meet and while we were there we explored  inside the RAF Museum. There was a big feature on the Berlin Airlift and the role that the RAF played in this monumental effort in continuing to supply a city under siege. As part of the exhibition a piece of the original wall was on display and as soon as I saw it, I wanted to photograph it especially for this week’s photo challenge on the theme of “community”. I can think of nothing better that encapsulates this theme than the story of the rise and fall of the Berlin Wall and ultimately the victory of community over state.

Wikipedia, summarises the story of the Berlin Wall as below.

The Berlin Wall was a barrier constructed by the German Democratic Republic (GDR, East Germany) starting on 13 August 1961, that completely cut off (by land) West Berlin from surrounding East Germany and from East Berlin. The barrier included guard towers placed along large concrete walls, which circumscribed a wide area (later known as the “death strip”) that contained anti-vehicle trenches, “fakir beds” and other defences. The Eastern Bloc claimed that the wall was erected to protect its population from fascist elements conspiring to prevent the “will of the people” in building a socialist state in East Germany. In practice, the Wall served to prevent the massive emigration and defection that marked Germany and the communist Eastern Bloc during the post-World War II period.

The Berlin Wall was officially referred to as the “Anti-Fascist Protection Rampart”  by GDR authorities, implying that neighbouring West Germany had not been fully de-Nazified. The West Berlin city government sometimes referred to it as the “Wall of Shame”—a term coined by mayor Willy Brandt—while condemning the Wall’s restriction on freedom of movement. Along with the separate and much longer Inner German border (IGB), which demarcated the border between East and West Germany, it came to symbolize the “Iron Curtain” that separated Western Europe and the Eastern Bloc during the Cold War.

Before the Wall’s erection, 3.5 million East Germans circumvented Eastern Bloc emigration restrictions and defected from the GDR, many by crossing over the border from East Berlin into West Berlin, from where they could then travel to West Germany and other Western European countries. Between 1961 and 1989, the wall prevented almost all such emigration. During this period, around 5,000 people attempted to escape over the wall, with an estimated death toll of over 100[5] in and around Berlin, although that claim is disputed.

In 1989, a series of radical political changes occurred in the Eastern Bloc, associated with the liberalization of the Eastern Bloc’s authoritarian systems and the erosion of political power in the pro-Soviet governments in nearby Poland and Hungary. After several weeks of civil unrest, the East German government announced on 9 November 1989 that all GDR citizens could visit West Germany and West Berlin. Crowds of East Germans crossed and climbed onto the wall, joined by West Germans on the other side in a celebratory atmosphere. Over the next few weeks, a euphoric public and souvenir hunters chipped away parts of the wall; the governments later used industrial equipment to remove most of the rest. The physical Wall itself was primarily destroyed in 1990. The fall of the Berlin Wall paved the way for German reunification, which was formally concluded on 3 October 1990.


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Weekly Photo Challenge – Let There Be Light Part Three

Let There Be Light

I have already entered twice into this challenge, but it was such an easy theme to conform to and in many ways this entry is the most appropriate of them all. You can imagine God, or Mother Nature shouting out, “Let there Be light” as they roll out a glorious sunrise for us to behold. Anyway this was what awaited us as we opened the shutters in our bedroom, so quick as a flash we dashed for the camera and caught it before it turned into full daylight.

You can see the original challenge here http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/11/29/photo-challenge-lights/


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Weekly Photo Challenge – Let There be Light Part Two

This week’s Photo Challenge on The Daily Post is “Let There Be Light” and it gave us the perfect excuse to go and shoot some night shots in Great Malvern. We knew what we wanted for this theme – a contemporary sculpture in Rose Bank Gardens of two buzzards which are eye catchingly lit up at night. That was what we first put up for this challenge but now I wanted to share some of the other photos from the evening’s shoot. Continue reading


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Weekly Photo Challenge – Let There Be Light

Buzzards

This weeks Photo Challenge on The Daily Post is “Let There Be Light” and it gave us the perfect excuse to go and shoot some night shots in Great Malvern. We knew what we wanted for this theme – this contemporary sculpture in Rose Bank Gardens of two buzzards which are eye catchingly lit up at night. There – job done!

You can see the original challenge here http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/11/29/photo-challenge-lights/