brian's soapbox
AUGUST 2018

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EXPERT OPINION - LETTERS

 

As always, the opinions expressed in these pages are purely and personally those of myself, Brian; they are not the official views of Queen, or of any other organisation or individual.

Reference:
- Lame Claims
- Stereo and Freeview Notes
- Help with Stereo Viewing (LSC)
*NEW*
- Brian May's IG Stereo Template - zip
  Click link above to Download (may open PhotoShop)
  or Ctrl_Click and choose Download Linked File As...
- Brian May's IG Stereo Template - pdf
  Click link above, choose Save Link As... open in PhotoShop

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Please DON'T reproduce stuff from these pages WITHOUT PERMISSION. And if you do, please give us credit (brianmay.com)!! and a LIVE link. `
Cheers ! Bri
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**Fri 17 Aug 18**
R.I.P. ARETHA

Direct link

R.I.P. Aretha

- wonderful wonderful

Queen of Song and Soul.

We love you.

Bri

Aretha Franklin

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**Thu 16 Aug 18**
FAREWELL EDINBURGH - HELLO ABERDEEN
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Looking up ! Farewell Edinburgh - what a buzz ! Thanks ! Hope to be back soon.

Looking up - farewell Edinburgh

It's a Rose Bay Willow Herb world ! It must be the most successful organism in these parts ! Who knew ? Now the purple spikes are turning fluffy white as the flowers give way to seeds. On the banks of the railway line they are EVERYWHERE !

Brian May: Rose Bay Willow Herb - https://youtu.be/qRyMsAvP9SE

Hello Aberdeen ! Sparkling in the sunshine !!

Hello Aberdeen - in sunsunshine

George Washington Wilson's house !! Part of our pilgrimage ! Bringing GWW home !

George Washington Wilson's house - Aberdeen

 

Prof Roger Taylor bringing George Washington Wilson back to Aberdeen this afternoon. 

Prof Taylor in Aberdeen this afternoon

Thanks dear Aberdonians for receiving us so warmly tonight (16 August).

An unforgettable moment.

GWW - portraits collage

We made headlines in Aberdeen ! Happy. Mission accomplished ! Thanks to all you good folks in the Granite City ! 

Aberdeen Press & Journal - header

Visiting GWW's house - which is now the Clydesdale Bank, who received us warmly and took us up to the dusty turret ! Grateful!

GWW's house - stereo

The CastleGate - Aberdeen architecture is epic. We're comparing with the 1860s picked in the GWW book. Not too much has changed here on the outside.

Castlegate, Aberdeen

Bri

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**Wed 15 Aug 18**
EDINBURGH
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On it ! BBC Radio Scotland for breakfast ! GWW rocks ! 

Brian and Prof Taylor Radio Scotland

LSC Edinburgh talk ad

Here's an Edinburgh scene from the GWW book. By chance we were working very close to this spot ....

Edinburgh street and castle view

We found the spot where GWW must have placed his tripod for his stereo camera. I did this sequentially with an iPhone - to get a slightly longer baseline - probably about a foot. So this has a slightly exaggerated 3-D effect ... ah yes ... you guys know all about that ! Fun !

Edinburgh street view replicated 15082018

Our lovely audience at the Edinburgh Literary Festival. THANKS GUYS !!! photo by Nicole Ettinger

Edinburgh audience - by Nicole Ettinger

Great photo...

Bri

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**Wed 15 Aug 18**
SO SAD - GENOA
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Genoa tragedy

So sad to hear of Genoa's tragedy. Our sincere condolences and love to our Italian friends.

Bri

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**Wed 15 Aug 18**
GEORGE WASHINGTON WILSON - ANOTHER LABOUR OF LOVE
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Ah ! I forgot ! We did a vid to introduce GWW and this book to the world.


Brian May unwraps "George Washington Wilson" 3-D Book 15/08/2018
- https://youtu.be/N8zPhwd47qA

Hello Folks.

I'm here to tell you about another labour of love, which we're about to launch on the world and very proud of this. This is a book written by Roger Taylor. Not the Roger Taylor that perhaps you associate with me - the excellent drummer of this Queen group. No, this is Professor Roger Taylor of De Montfort University who has been a wonderful supportive friend to me for many many years actually since 1984. He's been my mentor in photography and more than 30 years ago he wrote this amazing book on the subject of the photographs of George Washington Wilson.

Who is George Washington Wilson? He is one of the absolute foremost photographers of the 1850s and 60s period stereoscopic photographer - landscape photographer in 3-D. He's Scottish and his work centres around the landscapes of Scotland but he actually travels much further afield and he's a very experimental practitioner as well.

This is the book. It took a long time to come. Professor Roger Taylor wrote this book a long time ago but the publishing was interrupted by the publishing company going bankrupt and so it never came out in the way that he had hoped. It came out actually without any stereo pictures in it except one, which is very sad.

This feature on the front epitomises in some way George Washington's work. It's very beautiful. it's very much propagating an idea of being in awe of your surroundings.

And we were able to republish. This is a dream of mine. I wanted to republish the text that Roger wrote all those years ago in a form where it was really enjoyable to the public. To me this will promote George Washington's Wilson's work from the 1860s to a new audience and hopefully they will thrill in the same way as the Victorians did to his amazing vision of what was around him.

I'm gonna unwrap this book. Unwrap this book now…. There ya go.

If you can see this comes with a little belly band here, which we can take off. This is just, - it's just taking too long … but I'm enjoying myself.

This says “Scotland's greatest stereo photographer”. Probably the case. And here we are. We'll open it up and this book doesn't have a slip case. Most of our books have been in a slip case with the OWL enclosed. This one is more portable, if you like, and instead of the large OWL, which is demountable, In the back of the book back, of this book, we have the Lite OWL, which actually performs optically very very well and makes things a little bit more accessible as regards getting the thing out there to the public. So we're hoping this new format will work. It also means the book can be a little bit cheaper, so it's again a little bit more accessible to more people. That's my hope. ...

The whole text describes George Washington Wilson's journey through life and his discovery of stereoscopic photography and it describes the way within which he kind of got hooked on being a stereo photographer rather than a flat landscape photographer. He innovated. He was a technician as well as an artist and he discovered that if he took pictures into the light as opposed to with the light behind you. which was the way that was prescribed at the time, he discovered he could get beautiful lighting effects and particularly he could get the sky … [he] could get the clouds in his pictures that had been very difficult up to this time. So this particular photograph here , which is what you see in the front of the cover, was one of the achievements which made him a national treasure and he was very much appreciated in his day.

Queen Victoria herself engaged him to be an official [photographer] and you will see some features of Queen Victoria in this book.

We published these books and I get a lot of lovely feedback from them these days.

You can read the book normally and you can look at some flat pictures if you like. There's lots of history here to absorb but once you get into it with your OWL viewer the whole thing transforms and you're looking exactly as your counterpart in Victorian times would have looked at these pictures and suddenly it's as if you could walk into them you could experience that beautiful scene on the water. You could feel the wind in your face. You could talk to these people. That's the feeling you get and that's what's riveted me from the beginning with stereo photography.

So each one of these stereo pairs will spring to life in this viewer as you go through the book.

I've probably said enough. I hope you thought your interest is piqued I hope from lots of people will get pleasure from this book. It's a glimpse into life in the 1860s in Scotland and in England. He travelled quite far in the British Isles but it's also a glimpse into an artist's mind - an artist who was trying to make a point - and to me this is what fascinates me. What…. where is the place where an artist operates? Does he operate very privately just for his own satisfaction? Does he operate very commercially just for other people's satisfaction and to make him money? I think this man sat right on the borderline/ I think he did art for its own sake but it was art which made a lot of people very happy and gave them a particularly rich vision of the world around them this is the new book we're launching now.

We will be coming, Roger and myself and Denis, who will do the projection, to Aberdeen and to Edinburgh in the next few days we hope to see you and we hope you'll enjoy this particularly beautiful book of which I'm very proud.

Bri

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**Tue 14 Aug 18**
OFF TO BONNIE SCOTLAND !
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Off To Bonnie Scotland

Off to Bonnie Scotland ! Via King's Cross. A masterpiece of Victorian architecture ! We're off to launch our new 3-D book on the life and work of a Victorian master photographer - George Washington Wilson. Celebrating a Scottish hero.

Off to Bonnie Scotland - stereo

And (of course) in stereo. Very imperfect because it's sequential and very little stays still in a station ! Especially the train on the right. But what's a little retinal rivalry between friends ? George Washington Wilson used an instantaneous stereo camera most of the time, so, unlike my true hero T.R. Williams 10 years earlier, he didn't do many sequential stereos. He did, however take some stereos with long baselines, which is a bit of a mystery.

Bri on train with GWW book

So here we are on the train ! There's something nice and civilised about the train. Nice tea ladies (and gents). Sandwiches. Coffee. Scenery. Cows in fields. People with laptops. Scenery. Relaxed conversation. Scenery. Wild flowers. Clouds. A gentle rhythmic sound of the wheels. Scenery. Final planning for the talk we'll be giving in Edinburgh - and then on to Aberdeen - the birth place of GWW.

GWW Ellen's Isle stereo card

This might be my favourite picture in the GWW book. (George Washington Wilson). It's a reproduction of a classic GWW stereo card - with typical yellow mount. It's so crisp it looks like it was printed yesterday - instead of 150 years ago. The quality of reproduction is so high - stochastic screen printing - that you can view these illustrations in your (included) LITE OWL stereoscope and see them in just the same depth as GWW's Victorian audience did. OK - enough hard sell !! By the way -- you can free-view this and see it in 3-D - even though it's a photo of a print of a photo etc ... the magic comes through !!!

Brian holding GWW book

NEWSFLASH: More tickets have just been released to attend the launch of Brian May and Prof Roger Taylor’s  "George WashingtonWilson" in Aberdeen, the birthplace of the great Scottish Victorian artist and photographer https://www.abdn.ac.uk/news/12086/ 

So there's good news for you guys who were disappointed because you got a 'sold out' message. Hurrah ! See ya there ! 

The Wee Restaurant

Yep ! This is definitely Bonnie Scotland ! I'll likely be calling in here for a wee cuppie !

Bri

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**Mon 13 Aug 18**
SHOULD MAZZ BE REFUSED PERMISSION TO SING A SONG
BECAUSE SHE IS WHITE ? 

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Mazz Murray - portrait
Mazz Murray

Should this lady be refused permission to sing a song – because she is white ?

It seems that some theatre impresarios, out of fear of being branded discriminatory to artists of colour, are making decisions that discriminate against white artists, which are being perceived by some as a unpleasant new kind of race-based injustice.

This lady has been denied permission to sing a song at the Albert Hall, apparently for racial reasons.

She's white and Jewish, and one of the most electrifying singers in Britain.  Her name is Mazz Murray, and Queen fans will remember her incredible 8 year run playing the part of Killer Queen in our musical We Will Rock You. She's currently starring in Chicago, the musical, in London's West End.

Mazz was booked to headline a concert at the Albert Hall (October 8th) – the planned highlight being her outstanding performance of “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going”. Now this is a song featured in the successful musical  Dreamgirls currently playing at the Savoy Theatre, London. When the producers of the Albert Hall show asked for permission for Mazz to sing the song, they were told that Dreamgirls is an “African American Musical” and they did not think it appropriate for a non-BAME company to perform the songs from it.  So Mazz has been denied permission to sing the song because she’s not black.

Does anybody out there find this shocking ?  Unjust ?

As a writer of songs myself, I would be horrified if any singer was denied the right to sing one of my songs because he or she was ‘from the wrong ethnic group’. Surely it’s insane that, while the musical Hamilton has been applauded for putting black artists on the stage to play famously white historical figures, and soon we will have a black Emily Pankhurst - this fabulous white singer is banned from singing an “African American” song in a concert ?

What a strange world this is becoming.

What think you, folks ? Do you think musicals should henceforth be identified with one ethnic group, and nobody who doesn’t belong to that group should be allowed to perform the songs ?

Or should Mazz Murray be given the chance to perform this excellent torch song at the Albert Hall ?

Bri

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**Sun 12 Aug 18**
WITH PROF ROGER TAYLOR - YESTERDAY
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Bri and Prof Roger Taylor 11 Aug 2018

With my friend and mentor Prof Roger Taylor today [Sat 11 Aug] - proudly holding our new book - working on our live 3-D presentation for this coming week ! Wednesday 15th in Edinburgh, Thursday 16th in Aberdeen - the birth place of brilliant 1860s stereo photographer GEORGE WASHINGTON WILSON. And this is the book - sumptuous in top quality 3-D illustrations - with a LITE OWL included - so you can enjoy GWW's stereo photographs in glorious depth just as the Victorians did.

Brian and Prof Taylor - stereo

In 3-D ! Just to prove that stereoscopy is still alive in the 21st century ... Prof Roger Taylor and myself proudly holding the new book on George Washington Wilson - which apparently has leapt to NUMBER 1 in the AMAZON arty books chart ! Hurrah ! Thanks folks !

Cover photo GWW book

The cover picture of the London Stereoscopic Company's new publication NOW ! George Washington Wilson took this beautiful photograph around 1860 - the location : Loch of Park, Aberdeenshire, Scotland.

Cover photo GWW book - stereo

And in stereo - of course. I hope you can free–view this, folks. It's such a beautiful picture by George Washington Wilson, the one we chose for the cover of our new book on his life and work. An 'instantaneous' stereo view of his family on Loch of Park, Aberdeenshire, around 1860. See you in Bonnie Scotland this week !!

GWW competition

Wow - those GWW talks in Edinburgh and Aberdeen have sold out - thanks Scots pals. Time for a wee celebration ! But if you didn't manage to get tickets, here's a last chance ! The competition is at https://www.facebook.com/londonstereo/?ref=settings 

Bri

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**Thu 09 Aug 18**
PRESS THE RIGHT BUTTON
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Press the right button

Ah ! Just need to press the right button - and all will be revealed !

Bri

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**Tue 07 Aug 18**
AFTERNOON'S FILMING RESCUED HEDGEHOGS
- VEGAS IS HAPPENING ! - AND - HELLO SCOTS !
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Afternoon's filming with rescued Hedgehogs are ... precious !

Bri and rescured hedgehog

Thanks Steve Backshall  !! Filming for "Saving Britain's Hedgehogs" - two one-hour programmes to be aired on Channel 5 in April ! Watch out !!! - Athena Film.

Steve Backshall and Bri

The climax of the day ! Releasing 24 hoglets into their new (temporary) home - where they can learn to forage and take care of themselves in perfect safety. Thanks @anneatsavemefor creating this Hedgehog Heaven. And thanks Steve Backshall @backshall.steve for your time and talent. Watch out on Channel 5 next April - "Saving the Hedgehogs". Let's hope we do. 

<VIDEO UNAVAILABLE>

Life is a learning curve ! One happy hedgehog in natural (but safe) habitat. All these rescuees are a tribute to the TLC they've enjoyed at Save-Me HQ. Soon they will return truly to the wild, where they belong. Save the Hogs ! Thanks @anneatsaveme for these wonders !

---

YES !!! Vegas IS happening ! A new adventure ! Better get those fingers hardened up ! See ya there !

Don't miss Queen + Adam Lambert "The Crown Jewels" Las Vegas Residency
- https://youtu.be/JgnUZGIE-3k

Hello Scots ! We will be projecting in 3-D some exquisite 3-D Scottish landscapes by a truly great Scottish stereographer. In person ! In Edinburgh and Aberdeen ! One time only ! Can’t wait !

GWW talks Edinburgh and Aberdeen

Bri

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**Sat 04 Aug 18**
GENERAL GEORGE A CUSTER, C 1865
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General Custer 3-D

General George A Custer. C 1865. I was fascinated by this post by @stereoscopichistory (may I repost ?!) stereo is such a powerful medium for portraits. Look into those eyes (which I believe were blue). Do you see a man who could mercilessly destroy a village full of women and children ? The Sioux arranged a particularly merciless death for the white man they hated the most. If you're interested in this sad piece of history, I recommend a book called "Bury my heart at Wounded Knee" by Russell Means, which tells 'How the West Was Won' from a Native Indian perspective. It changed my view of my world and my race. Forever.

General Custer - stereo portrait

Another nice stereo portrait of Custer, and the info with this post is fascinating - thanks @hubbledoge --- So ! are there any more nice 3-D portraits of Custer out there ?

Bri

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**Fri 03 Aug 18**
CONGRATULATIONS STEREOGRAPHERS !!! - AND - FINAL CUT ?!!!
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Congratulations to these excellent Stereographers !!! The level of innovation and art in the entries was VERY high. It was a tough job to choose 'best of' - but the panel were unanimous about the outstanding quality of these three - our winners ! Big thanks to all of you who worked so hard on the entries. I'm hoping we can eventually put them ALL on view.

Congratulations stereographers

Hallowed halls ! Final cut ?!!! Really ?!!! Tee hee ...

Hallowed Halls - 20th Century Fox

!!!

Brian and Bohemian Rhapsody movie poster

Bri

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