Arka Photo Blog – Stu Mayhew

So I had spent an enjoyable, if occasionally wet, day in Canary Wharf it was time to get home and charge my batteries. My camera batteries naturally ! I made the short trip from where I live in Shooters Hill down to Artillery Square in Woolwich where Teatr Osmega Dnia would bring and end to GDIF 2014 with Arka.

GDIF2014 Arka by Theatr Osmego Dnia ; Photo by Stu Mayhew

GDIF2014 Arka by Theatr Osmego Dnia ; Photo by Stu Mayhew

This Polish theatre group began their performance amongst the large gathered crowd, winding their way up on to the main stage. It looked like a wedding celebration but was soon interrupted by a military invasion symbolised by fire eating men who being wheeled through the square on wood and metal contraptions spitting flames high into the night sky, drawing cheers and gasps from everyone.

GDIF2014 Arka by Theatr Osmego Dnia ; Photo by Stu Mayhew

GDIF2014 Arka by Theatr Osmego Dnia ; Photo by Stu Mayhew

Meanwhile the stage had turned into a scene of huge burning windows , silhouetting the crowd. This large flaming structures were then moved through the crowds and the scene was strange yet beautiful to behold.

GDIF2014 Arka by Theatr Osmego Dnia ; Photo by Stu Mayhew

GDIF2014 Arka by Theatr Osmego Dnia ; Photo by Stu Mayhew

The performance is about war and refugees being displaced from home. It was quite a moving piece and visually captivating. GDIF has really discovered Artillery Square as a great performance venue and bring the Arts right into the the center of Woolwich has to be applauded, there is always a really big, highly appreciative crowd and tonight was no exception

GDIF2014 Arka by Theatr Osmego Dnia ; Photo by Stu Mayhew

GDIF2014 Arka by Theatr Osmego Dnia ; Photo by Stu Mayhew

As a huge ship gently sailed into the crowd the show ended and the curtain was closed on GDIF 2014. It is a real privilege to be apart of it, in my own small way. Over the years I have met many of the performers and photographers and its nice to see old faces. A massive effort goes into to bringing such a prestigious event to Greenwich Borough and long may it continue.

GDIF2014 Arka by Theatr Osmego Dnia ; Photo by Stu Mayhew

GDIF2014 Arka by Theatr Osmego Dnia ; Photo by Stu Mayhew

If you live locally and enjoy photography or want to learn how to get more out of your camera then visit http://www.woolwichphotographic.com and find out more about Greenwich’s award winning camera club!

See you next year

Stu

Photo blog from Stu Mayhew Greenwich Fair Day 2

Gallery

This gallery contains 8 photos.

Photo blog from Stu Mayhew Greenwich Fair Day 2   By mid afternoon the crowds were enjoying the glorious hot weather and spoilt for choice for interesting street theatre. I followed a GDIF volunteer with a sign guiding me to … Continue reading

GDIF2014 Photo Ambassador – Dave Flynn

GDIF is very excited to have Dave Flynn, winner of last year’s Awardio.io photo competition, as this year’s photo ambassador for 2014. Make sure to follow our blog for photo updates from Dave during this year’s festival!

dflynn

I am Dave Flynn, I became interested in digital photography in 2010 after being made redundant from a 15 year retail career.  Since then I’ve achieved several photographic distinctions ranging from gold awards and highly commended achievements with the society of wedding and portrait photographers (SWPP).  My highest accolade was winning Nature & Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2012, again with ‘the societies’.

I lived in Greenwich for 15 years and I attended the GDIF festival for the first time last year.  I just went along for the photo opportunities and ended up staying there for most of the first day of the festival. The atmosphere was fantastic when I arrived and the  buzz continued to grow throughout the day.  I remember it rained on and off but that didn’t dampen anyone’s spirits!

There were huge crowds and loads of fun.  Wherever you looked there was loads going on. The beached whale was a highlight and attracted plenty of onlookers.  The Orblys (huge eyeballs) on stilts were my personal favourites, they entertained everyone and the kids were excited and scared of them.  I also loved the interaction between the performers and crowd which added to the amazing atmosphere.  I’m excited to shoot this years festival and looking forward to capturing the atmosphere once again.  I can’t pinpoint who I’m looking forward to seeing the most but I’m exited to catch the highlights of the opening and closing ceremonies as those artists are there for one performance only.

Come rain or shine, I’m sure this year’s event will be the best yet and personally I’m delighted to be a part of it officially.

GDIF2013 - Credit Dave Flynn

GDIF2013 – Credit Dave Flynn

GDIF2014 Directie & Co. Site Visit

539042_10151106009941380_927651790_nBy Emily Thomas, Projects Administrator at GDIF

Sophie and I are busy pulling together the arrangements for GDIF2014 and recently organised a rain-soaked site visit with a Dutch company performing as part of Greenwich Fair. Yvonne van den Akker is one of the two directors of Directie & Co., whose show Laundry XL will visit GDIF this summer. This all-female performance weaves together elements of dance, theatre, visual art and, ironically, a bit of water. This is our first site visit with an artist for this year’s festival, and for me being new with GDIF, a great opportunity to walk the various festival spaces and start to imagine the physical reality of the festival amidst these months of planning.

Site Visit 20.1.14 004

I used to work on the Watch This Space Festival at the National Theatre, where Theatre Square in front of the building was our foremost site for the festival. Having such a choice of sites is still quite a novelty for me and we discussed with Yvonne a number of possible spaces for staging the performance, which has a processional element. The next stage will be to piece together the rest of the Greenwich Fair programme to see where all the elements best fit, so we can maximise each show’s potential. It’s a bit like a giant jigsaw puzzle.

Watch This Space 2011 courtesy of the National Theatre

Watch This Space 2011 courtesy of the National Theatre

Yvonne had a whistle stop tour in London, leaving and returning to Amsterdam in the same day. A brief but productive visit, and I hope that the company’s next visit in June will be sunnier for her.

Laundry XL by Directie & Co. (Photo by Cies de Vries Fotografie)

So while it is nice to now be back in the cosy, dry GDIF offices, for me this has been a very welcome introduction to GDIF2014. I feel that we’ve now properly met!