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BLOG – John Maher’s Photography Blog

17 Dec 2012
no job too small, handyman, derelict, abandoned, house, home

Torn trousers and moaning about the weather

TORN TROUSERS AND MOANING ABOUT THEE WEATHER Slim pickings from last month’s full moon period. All told, 2012 hasn’t been a great year in terms of favourable weather conditions for full moon night photography in the Outer Hebrides. I got a few shots in February but January, March and April were complete write-offs due to heavy cloud and rain. May, June and July are always a no-show due to the long summer days we see at our northerly latitude i.e. […]

18 Nov 2012
Blacksheep House, grand designs, strond, harris

Blacksheep House

BLACKSHEEP HOUSE Blacksheep House is a renovated black house on the Isle of Harris. In 2008 it won Channel 4’s Grand Designs Home of the Year award. I’ve photographed Blacksheep House a few times. Back in November 2010, Pete and Christine Hope, the couple responsible for transforming the roofless ruins of a former traditional black house into 5 star luxury accommodation, mentioned they had a rare week in their letting schedule where the house would be empty during the full […]

17 Oct 2012
newspaper cuttings from 1964 to 1966

The Writing on the Walls

THE WRITING ON THE WALLS I visited this house almost three years ago – right around the time I first started experimenting with night photography. It was a freezing cold January night. I took a look inside. Apart from a pile of broken crockery and several cassette tapes scattered across the floor there was little else of interest. Or so I thought….. I paid the place another visit last weekend. This time it was during the hours of daylight – […]

09 Oct 2012
sweet dreams, bedroom, abandoned

Sweet Dreams

SWEET DREAMS The image above (Sweet Dreams), is part of Nobody’s Home collection. Attending the opening of Steve Dilworth’s exhibition, Mortal Remains at An Lanntair on Saturday night I got into a conversation with one of the attendees. We discussed the subject of abandoned Hebridean homes and a shared interest in what these places tell us about islanders’  lives, past and present.  The following day I visited the subject of this post – a family home on Lewis, last occupied […]

26 Sep 2012
Ensay House, sound of harris, outer hebrides

Ensay House

A collection of photos from my trip to an unoccupied island in the Sound of Harris. The interior shots of Ensay House have sparked a wave of nostalgia amongst a group of people who used to travel to the island with their parents and grand parents during the lambing season. Thanks to those who’ve been sharing their memories and stories from the happy times they spent on Ensay.

18 Sep 2012
Nevermind the Buzzcocks, kettingzaag, blog

Never Mind the Zoomdicks

Sharing info posted on the Dutch blog ‘Kettingzaag‘ [Chainsaw]. In the midst of all the Dutch lingo, I spied a couple of name checks. Curiosity getting the better of me, I ran the page through an online translator. No doubt some of the subtleties and nuances of the original post have been mangled in translation but it looks good to me: ‘Buzzcocks’ become the ‘Zoom Dicks’ and yours truly discovers he’s not a ‘Pop Idiot’, despite a recent temporary infraction. My CV has been updated accordingly

25 Aug 2012
Norman Mackay, finsbay, isle of harris, fank

Men at Work

MEN AT WORK Driving through Finsbay this morning I spotted Norman Mackay at Finsbay fank. For the benefit of those who’ve never heard of one before, a fank is a form of sheep pen, where the animals are corralled, sheared, dosed, marked etc. Most of the shearing has taken place by now (August) but twenty or thirty missed out first time round. This was catch-up session for the stragglers. I’d driven half a mile past the fank before realising I […]

03 Aug 2012
Harris Tweed Truck, kenneth mackenzie, mill, stornoway

On the road again?

ON THE ROAD AGAIN? Another piece of Hebridean history disappeared from view recently. Unlike some of the decaying subjects I’ve shot that are no longer with us, this one could be set to reappear. This 1957 aluminium bodied Albion truck was ordered by Kenneth Mackenzie Ltd of Stornoway, the islands’ largest Harris Tweed mill. It was delivered to the Isle of Lewis in 1957. A photo of it being winched off the ferry ‘Loch Seaforth’ made the front page of […]

22 Jul 2012
The Artist's Chair, steve dilworth, studio, rsa

The Artist’s Chair

The making of the cover photo for the Royal Scottish Academy’s Summer 2012 newsletter. The Royal Scottish Academy Annual Exhibition ran from April 28th to June 6th. It’s a highlight of the exhibiting year and features RSA Academicians and selected submissions from leading and emerging artists from across Scotland. Harris based sculptor Steve Dilworth was one of those invited to participate […]

18 May 2012
Butt of Lewis Lighthouse, Ness, Isle of Lewis

20 Incredible Photos of Lighthouses

20 INCREDIBLE PHOTOS OF LIGHTHOUSES My night photo of the Butt of Lewis lighthouse, as featured in EnvironmentalGraffiti.com’s latest travel article: 20 Incredible Photos of Lighthouses Illuminating the Night   “This unpainted, redbrick lighthouse with yellow on its window and door accents is unusual for Scotland. The Butt of Lewis Lighthouse in the Outer Hebrides has been helping ships navigate the rough and stormy sea around the Isle of Lewis’s northernmost point since 1862. The structure is much needed, it […]