pskov revisited - day 5

Back to being a photographer for the morning, was honoured to meet a couple of local photographers at the art school to talk about mine and their images .. with an extremely talented translator of course. Interestingly some of the debate was about what it means to be a professional photographer and how are they represented. I always struggle with the term pro photographer as it may not quantify your talent, you could make a living from selling poor quality or produce the highest quality work without making an income. But what came from the discussion was the ideal that a professional artist is one that is trained and produces work for which they riley on for their income and that in most countries photography is just another art medium (not all, and Scotland is in conflict with the association). I have struggled in finding photographic art in Russia even though there are many many photographers producing stunning work. Thinks its a not being in Moscow thing....

What did come from the meeting this morning is the desire for more collaboration in both our countries for photographic art exhibitions, we have some ideas and this is really exciting.

So, onto crossing the road - Russian style. At first I could not believe what was happening, people just walk into the road and cars stop, something of a modern day Moses. Many road junctions have traffic lights with the old green man light, and most in St Petersburg have countdown timers for both cars and pedestrians .. Sorted !

But many lesser junctions and most in Pskov just have a crossing sign somewhere high on a lamp post or pole, any road markings have long since worn away.  At these points and on all side roads pedestrians have right of way, you just walk out and the traffic stops - it just happens. I know this is the same in some European countries but in the uk we need flashing lights and road markings that are visible from space. It's an odd thing relying on drivers and pedestrians actually being aware of each other.

And finally I thought I had seen everything .. But I have now !. Vehicles with mirrors or windows missing, lights missing, even bumpers and chunks of bodywork left by the roadside. Today we passed a tractor pulling a trailer down the main road, the back seemed rather lop sided, which it was, that's because it had one back wheel missing. Still had 3 wheels so what's the problem, less tires to worry about !!