Striking images come from everyday objects

Published on: 07 Sep 2015

DOWNEND photographer Simon Caplan will showcase some of his highly acclaimed abstract images when he stages his one-man exhibition this month.
Entitled ‘ExtraordinaryOrdinary 2: Hidden Beauty in the Urban Environment’, the show offers visitors a rare chance to enjoy his unique way of unearthing striking and attractive images from the everyday objects and scenes that many people simply walk past or ignore.
Simon’s work uses shallow depth of field and the contrast between its main subject and the background to create impact – often focusing in on bright colours or strong patterns. “Many people think my shots are abstracts or even paintings, but they are real objects that I have found in the street or in buildings,” said Simon, 56, from Amberley Road.
“It’s all a matter of seeing things slightly differently and knowing how to use the camera and different lenses to get the effect you want.”
The show, which takes place from September 5-18 at the Create Centre in B Bond Building, Smeaton Road, Hotwells, features a range of new images uncovered by Simon in Bristol and other urban areas across the South West.
The exhibition is open from 9am to 5pm Mondays to Fridays and from 10.30am to 3pm on the two Saturdays during its run (5th and 12th). Admission is free.
All images on display are for sale as framed and mounted prints with £5 from each sale being donated to the Lifeskills Safety Centre at Create, a charity which teaches children and vulnerable adults ways to stay safe and healthy.
When he’s not taking photographs, the retired public relations director is a regular volunteer guide at Lifeskills, which is open to visitors as part of Doors Open Day on Saturday September 12.
The exhibition comes hot on the heels of Simon’s success in being named Print Photographer of the Year for 2015 at Reflex Camera Club in St Anne’s. It is his first solo show for some years, with previous exhibitions being held at Bristol YHA (2011); Baristas Cafe (2012) and The Grain Barge (2012).
Over the years Simon’s work has also featured in mixed media exhibitions and pop up shops staged by Creative Bristol in Quakers Friars and The Showroom, College Green.
As well as being a member of Reflex Camera Club, Simon is a member of the city’s Second Look Photography Group. He is a regular speaker at camera clubs throughout the South West, including Downend Camera Club recently and already has talks booked at Tetbury and Worcester for next year.
Simon was recently invited to give a talk on his other photographic style – environmental portraits of craftworkers and traditional artisans – at the M Shed’s ‘Photo Shed’ event.
Simon is a Licentiate of the Royal Photographic Society (LRPS).
To see more of Simon’s work – including his environmental portraits and landscapes – visit www.simoncaplanphotography.co.uk or www.flickr.com/photos/simoncaplan
For more information about Lifeskills, visit www.lifeskills-bristol.org.uk

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