Monthly Archives: May 2014

London Photo Festival – May 2014

The London Photo Festival is a theme based exhibition organised twice per years, and open to amateur and semi-professional photographer. This year I decided to enter the competition, the theme was Street Photography”.

I am very pleased as my entry “Private Lives” has been selected as 2nd runner during the private viewing, by the guest judge and photographer Colin O’Brien. It is an encouraging reward and one I am proud of, given the variety of works on display.

Private Lives

A master class and portfolio review with Zoe Whisham, Commercial Photography Consultant and Mentor, was also a good opportunity for me to have a constructive feedback on previous works, and identify future area of development.

Thanks to the London Photo Festival for this great opportunity, and well done to the organisers Emma and Kit for the enthusiasm and commitment to the event.

 

Francesco

London, 25th May 2014

 

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Posted in Awards, Exhibition Tagged , , , |

A Little Blue Crafts Shop in Belgrade

This April in Belgrade I come across a small boutique shop for making brushes and decorative objects located in the very centre of the city.

This family business, opened in 1965, is now run by Ruzica Zivkovic, who personally makes all products by hand. As part of the manufacturing process, she selects the hairs, washes and dries them, and knots them together to different shapes. The wood is sourced from a local supplier and hand shaped to meet individual requirements. The final product is much better quality compared to those from industrial production, but also slightly more expensive.

In difficult times people do not have money to buy, and Ruzica struggles to keep up with the expenses. Some of her special brushes have remained on the shelves for years.

Ruzica tells me that Belgrade would benefit from a centre with the main purpose to promote precious traditional crafts and their conservation. And it is not just about the quality. There is passion, commitment and tradition behind each hand made item.

The point is that there many family run businesses like this, on the verge of closing, that need promotion to attract an increasing number of tourists visiting Belgrade.

Ruzica worries about the survival of her shop. Her husband passed away last year and her two kids, grown up and graduated at the University, might have different ambitions and not take the business forward. It is sad for her to imagine this shop closing down, it carries dear memories.

 (Džordža Vašingtona 18, Beograd, Srbija)

Ruzica has welcomed us warmly, and I bought a beautiful shaving brush for myself. Next time I am in Belgrade, I hope to hear that her shop is doing well.  I also hope to hear that someone has opened a Crafts Centre as it would be a fantastic add on to this fascinating, well worth exploring city.

 

Francesco

London, 1st May 2014

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Posted in Belgrade, People at work, Serbia, Travel Photography Tagged , , , , |