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Photobook Month Cardiff – the highlights

20th September 2011

Cardiff is such an amazing city. I love coming here. Every time I visit I uncover something new or different or both. Milgi – our stage for the evening – is on City Road, a mile or so from Central Station. It’s cool. Very cool.

Our audience was small but ready for two seriously great speakers – both from different ends of the photographic spectrum.

Here are the highlights;

Amy Davies

Amy Davies has one of the best job in the world (writing for the UK’s greatest tech site Tech Radar) because she gets a ton of free camera equipment and lenses to play with. Like this week – she’s been given some Lomo cameras and an Olympus PEN to play with. She’s also working on one of the most interesting photographic projects I’ve come across in some time: The Arcade Project. It’s become something of a labour of love for Amy, going to the city’s Arcades and photographing their owners, making for a fascinating look into one of Cardiff’s forgotten secrets. It is this that will become a Photobook (Amy’s keen to get it right before she publishes it). I for one can’t wait to see it. Thanks Amy.

Nadine Ballantyne

Nadine is a young music photographer who clearly adores what she does. She’s spent ages getting “down the front” at gigs to take pictures before taking up photography full time. She shoots festivals and live shows, mainly, but also location. What’s really interesting about Nadine’s work is her empathy as a music fan first and photographer second. She understands the audience’s part to play in the power of a live show and somehow manages to capture the energy of the performance without really trying. Her photobook of her music photography is amazing too.

The Yurt

We couldn’t not mention the yurt. A yurt (I am not an expert on these things) is a sort of tent thing that’s actually more like a little house. At least that’s how it feels and competes with Photobook Month Sheffield (remember the OK so it was a little chilly but when you’ve got sofa’s comfier than those you’d find at your Grandma’s house there’s no room for grumbling. We made way for a sci-fi group to do their thing right after we finished and made a pact (well, I did) to come back next time I’m in town.


Our small group was alive with conversation. Questions abound for Nadine and Amy and there was a lot interest in the books we’d brought along to share. Everyone particularly liked the lay-flat books and the photographic paper. Can’t wait to see you again, Cardiff.