New photographic exhibition captures beauty of Galway - by mobile phoneOctober 18, 2012 - 7:00am
Photographic exhibitions of Galway scenes are nothing new.
But an exhibition, to open in city restaurant Food For Thought on November 16, is unusual in that all of the photos on display will have been taken on mobile phones.
This show is the result of an initiative by two local men men Aidan Coughlan and Ciaran Pope, who are both keen amateur photographers and users of the hugely popular Instagram phone app.
Instagram allows people to take photos on their iPhones or smartphones and then edit them – either a lot or a little, depending on the quality or what you want to do with them, explains Aidan, whose day job is as a Garda, based in Carraroe.
Each user, or ‘iger’ has their own specific account and can post their pictures for the world to see, he explains. People can place associated hash (#) tags on their pictures (example #Galway) and then search the Instagram site for other pictures associated with this tag.
It was thanks to Instagram that Aidan first became aware of Ciaran, who works in finance. They shared a common interest in photographing the Galway area using their phones and the app, as a result of which they started following each other on Instagram.
Eventually, they met up and organised a photographic walk with like-minded people, explains Aidan.
The photos people were posting on Instagram of Galway attracted many comments, all positive and plenty from America.
In fact, says Aidan, some Instagram users even travelled from the States to Galway, wanting to take photos locally. That might sound strange, but Aidan can see why.
“It’s an unusual place,” he observes. “It’s rare to get the city, the sea and a place like Connemara so close together.”
Being based in Connemara gives Aidan scope to enjoy his hobby and both he and Ciaran have won awards for their images.
A lot of good photographers in Galway are using this app and in recognition of that, Ciaran and Aidan decided to organise a competition, albeit one without a monetary prize.
“We are a non-profit group of people who ultimately want to get the community involved in our photography and promote our lovely country,” he says.
They invited registered users of Instagram to submit five of their best Galway themed shots to the men’s Instagram account.
The pair thought they might get 300 entries and planned to exhibit 50 of them. However, the response has exceeded all their expectations, with almost 1,500 entries from all over the world, and there’s still time to go before Saturday’s closing date.
For more, read this week's Connacht Tribune.