• Jeff Ascough

My Favourite Image: Kids and gulls

Good Friday 2019. We had planned to shoot on the streets of Blackpool for the entire Easter weekend. The weather was going to be good, and the beaches packed with people.

When we got there, the light was very harsh. I was getting some success with shooting into the sun and working with silhouettes while using a short telephoto to compress elements in the frame. However, I wasn't getting much in the way of anything new. As we walked towards the pier, I noticed a flock of gulls getting rather excited near the top of the promenade. They had congregated around some people who were feeding them. As always when this happens, the gulls get braver and the humans start to panic. Something must have freaked the people out as there was a scream which scared the gulls off. They flew straight across the beach where kids were playing. I took two pictures. I like this picture because it's packed with life. From the family in the foreground, through to the gulls and kids in the middle ground, and onto the edge of the sea and the Pier. The boy in the centre of the frame makes the image. I got lucky with the positioning of the gulls around him. The Pier holds the eye into the frame, and the contrasting elements of water and sand add good diagonal lines. The compression caused by the telephoto adds to the image by bringing the figures closer together.

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