Edinburgh Fringe

18th August 2013
Had a very long but very enjoyable and rewarding day at the Edinburgh Fringe last Thursday. I went up for the Fringe 2 years ago and got a couple of unusual shots which have won international gold medals so I though it might be worth another try.
The Royal Mile,actually a succession of streets forming the main thoroughfare of Edinburgh, is always jam packed with street theatre which include performance groups, artists, singers, dancers all of whom thrust fliers into you hand to advertise their shows which run night and day for the 3 weeks of the Fringe.
I always try and talk to the performers to build up a relationship and show interest in them before asking to take their photograph and it hardly ever fails and they will pose for you which yields much better results rather that trying long distance telephoto shots.


Tom Gilzean
Tom is 93 years old and has collected for an Edinburgh sick children's charity for the past 11 years, 365 days a year, he has collected £440,000.
He battled long and hard with the Council for a licence to collect money on the Royal Mile and is very well known by the local shopkeepers, he gets a free lunch everyday at an Italian restaurant owned by a Scotsman!
After speaking to him for a while he asked me to put on his bow tie, which I was only too pleased to oblige as it improved his portrait, as he can't manage it himself these days.
Tom collects money from his wheelchair and it would have been difficult to move him in front of a better background so the background was put in later, the cut out of Tom was done using Topaz Remask brilliant software for this purpose. The Stone work behind Tom comes from the Remembrance Memorial in Dewsbury Park.
A really lovely man.

Mendea aka Charlie Chaplin
Mendea is Spanish and has performed in the UK for the past 3 years, after a donation and a chat was willing to do any pose I asked, the shot below he created himself.

Knocking on Heaven's Door
There were a troup of girls dress like this advertising a show and as it happened they were near a church doorway on 'The Mile' so I asked her to stand in front of the door and pretend to knock, being a young girl I thought she would wonder why on Earth I was asking her to do this, but straight away she said to me ' Knocking on Heaven's Door'. Bob Dylan obviously spans many generations, unless there have been more recent cover versions !
Really like this shot.
I am expecting the comment "why is an angel wearing pyjamas" but I have a couple of answers ready:
"Because 75% of people die in their sleep" and
" How do you know, have you ever seen an angel?"
I don't mind the pyjamas as it gives it a more surreal look, rather than the cliché look of a tutu and tights. :)