2010 IN PICTURES – JANUARY

Welcome to a 12 part series, looking back at some of my favourite photos I took throughout 2010, as the year closes to an end.

We start, funnily enough, in January.

January was actually a lean month photowise, mainly due to the fact that a lot of football matches were postponed, and I didn’t go to any concerts.

The month was dominated by ‘The Big Freeze’, so I made the most of the opportunity to go out and take photos of the snow.

My favourite photo of the month combined snow with my love of football.

I woke up on the morning of 9th January in an exicted mood because of the snow, but I had an errand to do, to head over to Windsor Park to get refunds on tickets for a mate living in Liverpool who was unable to attend the re-arranged date of a match that was postponed.

I noticed upon my entry to the stadium that there was public access to the South Stand, so I asked a member of staff for permission to take some snaps of the pitch, which was granted.

With only the South Stand (If I had complete stadium access, I would have used every other part of it than the South Stand) to work with, I managed to set up and compose a few quick shots, which I was very happy with. On my way out, I managed to get some of the forecourt leading into the stadium.

I’ve got photos of Windsor Park in various other weather conditions (Well, night and rain) but snow was the one that I really wanted.

Enjoy.



See Also

Snow 2010

Winter Park

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ELLIE GOULDING – LIVE AT ULSTER HALL, 28.11.2010

Headed to the Ulster Hall last night to see Ellie Goulding’s second concert in Belfast this year, having previously played Spring and Airbreak in March.

The change, to a much bigger venue, is an indicator of the success she has had this year, and she currently sits at Number 2 on the Singles Chart, with a cover of ‘Your Song’

She first caught my attention late last year with the excellent ‘Under The Sheets’, which wasn’t the chart success it should have been, with follow-up singles ‘Starry Eyed’, ‘Guns and Horses’ and ‘The Writer’ getting higher placings.

Like her discography, this concert began with ‘Under The Sheets’, a song led by a hypnotic drum beat, which Ellie replicates on stage, beating in time to her band’s drummer.

With only a back catalogue to work with, this was never going to be a long concert, but Ellie made every second count, keeping talking to a minimum and playing her hits.

Her current single, a cover of Elton John’s ‘Your Song’, brought the house down.

To be honest, i’m not that big a fan of the song (I’m not even that big a fan of the original, as Elton John has done far better songs), but Ellie, with only a pianist for company, had the crowd in her hand.

She finished off with an encore, playing her hit ‘Starry Eyed’

A concert well worth missing X-Factor for. You didn’t need to watch UTV to see the UK’s next big music star, she was playing in our own city.

Photo Album

 

 

 

LISBURN DISTILLERY 0-4 LINFIELD 27.11.2010

Was at Ballyskeagh today for the Irish League match between Linfiled and Lisburn Distillery, which managed to beat the weather.

Linfield won easily 4-0, with a notable highlight being the snowstorm during the second-half which meant the game required an orange ball, which was not seen in East Belfast on December 26th 1995.

Appropriately, playing with an orange ball, Linfield’s third goal came from Robert Garrett (Chris Casement was unable to get on the scoresheet)

Just as pleasing, after a month without, was the keeping of a second successive clean sheet.

Ballyskeagh isn’t the most friendly football ground for amateur photography, but I did try.

One more thing before I go, Linfield Exile has been plugging this site, so I might as well return the favour, incase you missed it in the Portadown photo special a few weeks back.

Myspace Album

PARKLIFE

Not a tribute to Blur, but something I spotted today, of a competition being run by Belfast City Council, of photography of parks.

Unsurprisingly, i’m going to enter this and have a few photos taken in recent weeks that i’m going to put forward.

The competition rules state that you can only enter a mximum of three photos, so there is a bit of ruthlessness to be involved, although the deadline for entries is May 2011

These are the photos i’m planning on putting forward. Wish me luck

There are other accompanying photos, which can be found here :

Link 1
Link 2
Link 3

Feel free to leave comments on the blog or via Twitter if you think I should nominate another photo for the prize.

SOUND OF 2010 : 81-100

With 2010 coming to an end, it’s time for those tedious end of the year lists, and this blog is no different.

When I hosted a blog on Bebo, I used to post a weekly Top 5 of the songs I was listening to that week, and then at the end of the year, drip feed a Top 100 of the year just past.

I’m going to drip feed 20 songs each week between now and December 23rd, each Thursday night.

Why Thursday?

Well, that was the night I always upadted my blog on Bebo.

I don’t know how or why it became Thursday night, it just did, so I thought i’d just keep that little tradition going.

I always seemed to notice that when I posted my Top 5, one of the videos would end up in somebody’s flashbox. Hopefully, over the next five weeks, you will be introduced to some new songs you won’t have heard, and will come to love.

Previous ‘Sound Of’ winners are : Kasabien (2006) Fiest (2007) Sons and Daughters (2008) and Little Boots (2009)

And now rules. Lady Ga Ga fans might be in for a bit of a shock with no ‘Alejandro’, because it featured in last year’s chart.

Jona Lewie will feature because it’s a re-recording. But apart from that – my chart, my rules.

Sound Of 2006

Sound Of 2007

Sound Of 2008

Sound Of 2009

81. Robyn – Hang With Me
82. Duck Sauce – Barbra Streisand
83. Gorillaz – On Melancholy Hill
84. Vampire Weekend – Holiday
85. Kid British – Winner
86. Uber Glitterati – Armour
87. Diana Vickers – Once
88. The Wanted – Heart Remedy
89. Jason Derulo – In My Head
90. Daisy Dares You ft Chipmunk – Number One Enemy
91. Ellie Goulding – Your Song
92. Sophie Ellis-Bextor – Bittersweet
93. Eliza Doolittle – Rollerblades
94. Jason De Rulo – What If
95. Eminem ft Rihanna – Love The Way You Lie
96. Cheryl Cole – Parachute
97. B.O.B ft Rivers Cuomo – Magic
98. Alphabeat – DJ
99. Arcade Fire – Ready To Start
100. N.E.R.D – Hot n Fun

LINFIELD 1-0 DUNGANNON SWIFTS 20.11.2010

Was at Windsor Park today for Linfield’s home match against Dungannon Swifts, and the less said of the game, the better.

Linfield won 1-0 with the only moment of real quality of the game, and proceeded to miss as many glorious chances and break up their own promising attacks as possible, while Dungannon never looked like scoring, so the wastefullness in front of goal and the 18 yard box didn’t matter.

On to Ballyskeagh next week for the most depressing (Stuck in the middle of nowhere, shite views wherever you are, and the most amateur photograper unfriendly ground in the Irish League) away trip of the season.

After losing at Newry and Crusaders for the first time since 1999 in recent weeks, I can’t help but feel nervous about travelling to a ground where Linfiled haven’t lost since 1992.

Until then, enjoy photos of today’s game

Myspace Photo Album

NORTHERN IRELAND 1-1 MOROCCO 17.11.2010

A cold and wet night was the weather on the last (designated) international date of 2010, as Northern Ireland made the most of this opportunity to invite Morocco to Windsor Park for a friendly.

Managed to get tickets for this one, in the front of the Railway Stand, which seemed like a good idea at the time.

I’d decided on the Railway Stand just to see what it was like. It was a good view although I was unprotected from the elements, but I was able to get some not so bad photos when the ball was at that end of the pitch.

I also took the opportunity pre-match to try and get some portrait shots of the stadium.

The match wasn’t a lot to write home about, though Northern Ireland held their own, but just lacked that killer touch.

At half-time, it looked like one of those games that was going to end 0-0.

That changed early in the second-half when Marouane Chamakh charged down a clearance to put Morocco 1-0 up.

Northern Ireland huffed and puffed but never looked like scoring in open play, but in the 86th minute, a dead ball opportunity arose when Northern Ireland were awarded a penalty.

I managed to get into a good position for the kick, although I didn’t get any good photos of the goal, I did get a good one of the pre kick tension.

A late equaliser isn’t a bad way to warm the heart on a bitterly cold night, now, to concentrate on club football.

 

 

STLFTEM UPDATE – NOVEMBER

Got a showbiz exclusive for you folks (Except of course, if you follow me on Twitter, in which case, you may have already read it this afternoon) that Ellie Goulding’s concert at the Ulster Hall has sold out ………. because I purchased the last ticket today.

This is going to be my STLFTEM for November, which will be a whole lot more exciting than the Northern Ireland v Morocco game, which I am going to, and prior to today, was my STLFTEM for November.

Having entered the Four Four Two photo awards, I wanted to keep the weekend of the concert free in case I had to go to London in my misguided confidence/arrogance.

Thus, having heard nothing, I can assume I can make alternative plans, so I purchased a ticket for Ellie.

Though she might have “Broke through” in 2010, it was her debut single in late 2009, ‘Under The Sheets’ which grabbed my attention and is well worth checking out if you haven’t already heard it.

Despite my lack of enthusiasm in comparison with Ellie Goulding, I am looking forward to the Northern Ireland match on Wednesday night, though a much bigger match awaits the IFA on Thursday, as they make their pleas concerning proposed bills in Stormont, the most notable concerning drinking at grounds and various other criminal bills which single out and stigmatise football, as was covered in this week’s Sunday Life.

Though the alcohol ban doesn’t affect me as a non-drinker, it would be foolish not to be concerned by it, due to the loss of revenue streams for clubs.

Hopefully, the IFA can lobby successfully and ensure that football and it’s member clubs get a fair deal.

Football has already suffered this season due to new Health and Safety legislation restricting attendances, with Linfield fans being the most affected regarding away games.

The big test, will be the first ‘Big Two’ game since this was passed, which isn’t far off.

After Saturday, Linfield only have one home game before Boxing Day, and that is the week before.

In short, those in charge need to get a move on with the match arrangements in order to ensure that people are able to get a ticket for what is likely to be the biggest attended match of the season.

(Not only that, sod the first viewing of the ‘Holidays Are Coming’ Coca-Cola ad, the Christmas countdown only really starts when Linfield v Glentoran, Boxing Day tickets go on sale)

Having previously applauded Linfield for ensuring early release of tickets for trips to Portadown and Crusaders, the club need to continue this, especially with ticketed matches away to Cliftonville and Donegal Celtic on the horizon as well, to ensure that supporters aren’t inconvenienced when wanting to watch their team.

The situation is best explained in this blog on Linfield supporters site, South Stand Says.

After reading that, why not enjoy ‘Under The Sheets’, courtesy of Ellie Goulding.

12 days and counting.

Ellie Goulding : Live In Liverpool (Reviewed by a mate)

CRUSADERS 2-1 LINFIELD 13.11.2010

Was at Seaview today for the Irish League clash between Crusaders and Linfield, which Crusaders won 2-1.

The game turned on a bizarre incident when Linfield were on the attack, a second ball was thrown onto the pitch.

The extra ball wasn’t interfering with play and was kicked out, but the referee saw fit to stop the game.

Amazingly, instead of the game being restarted with Linfield being given back possession, the referee decided to restart with a bounceball, which Crusaders took the lead from the resulting attack.

Bizarre, and just another sign of the complete incompetent refereeing Irish League fans have to put up with.

With Crusaders understandably time-wasting, the esteemed official saw fit to let himself have rings run around him and made a fool of, with nowhere near the appropriate injury time added on at the end, and the best he could muster was pointless time genstures to try and get them top hurry up when a yellow card would have been more effective.

Definately worth that payrise they went on strike for two years ago.

Hopefully, this can just be forgotten about and we can go on another 3 month unbeaten run.

On the plus side, I managed to get a good position for photo taking.

Enjoy.

Myspace Link