Inside this issue
Masters of Vision : Chris Upton
Amateur Photographer who plays with big cameras and film when in between digital photographs.
Tim: You’ve been doing this for a few years as well haven’t you
Chris: Yes 2009 was the first one so third time here
T: Have you seen changes since then?
C: Yes it’s definitely got bigger. There are a lot more people who know about it and the standard has improved. This year is the best it’s been definitely. There is also a lot more variety so there is something for everybody which is quite appealing.
T: Quite a lot of your photography is travel oriented isn’t it?
C: Yeah. I guess I’m a little bit different than some of the other guys as much as there is perhaps a little more emphasis on travel. I’ve been fortunate enough to have done quite a bit of travelling and there is a selection here from all around the world really.
T: Have you been a photographer for long?
C: It’s been a hobby for a long time but I think in common with most people with a young family you don’t get much time as the family grow up but when your kids get to early mid teens you have a bit more time. So really I’ve had a lot more time to concentrate on photography over the last five to six years and fortunate to travel as well.
T: And that coincides with the last four years of the exhibition. Shall we take a look at a couple of your images? I was commenting on your Santorini picture earlier on. A beautiful composition. Can you tell us a little bit about it.
C: Absolutely. Santorini, Greek Island. At the northern tip, there is a place called O’Ia and probably some of the best sunsets in the world can be seen from this place. It really is a photographers paradise anyway but it comes alive at sunset and this particular composition really worked. It was taken from the battlements of the old fort and I was up with the tripod and a long exposure and this was taken about three quarters an hour after the sun had gone down and all of the people had disappeared after the sunset and I composed the shot to have a nice S shape curve in the picture. It almost has a fairy tale effect.
T: Yes, the line of the lights bounces around the picture beautiful. And you were saying earlier on how everybody comes out as the sun is setting.
C: Yes the place is absolutely crowded and as the sun goes down, as soon as it dips below the horizon there is a round of applause which I’ve never witnessed before.
What really surprised me was having seen so many people watching the sunset, having seen the image there is nobody there at all. Can’t find anybody. A phenomenal place and perhaps my favourite picture.
T: Can we take a look at another.
C: This is camel traders in Rajasthan and every year there is a camel fair at a place called Pushkar and the camel traders come and sell camels and horses but generally there are 20,000 camels sold in a week and it is a phenomenal place. We went in November last year and it’s the first time I had been, just incredible. Almost biblical in it’s view and appeal. The scene has little campfires, little clusters of traders – particularly early morning and late evening. It’s a tribal gathering place. This particular shot caught my eye with two camels silhouetted against the background with a little crowd of traders at the end of the day no doubt discussing how successful they have been during the day with their trade. Interestingly there are 20,000 camels there but nearly as many photographers. Lots of Japanese photographers too.
T: It’s not all travel photography though is it
C: No we’ve got some really close to home – some pine trees in Nottinghamshire just using the tree trunks like a barcode in the mist.
T: Do you use Silver FX for this?
C: Yes – rather a special package.
T: And some photos from Wales? Do you get out much outside of holidays.
C: Yes a little – I retired as a sales manager and then was called back so I’m back at work. They asked me back for six months which became twelve months. But at the end of Christmas this year I’ve finished so I hope to get out and do a lot more.
T: And where would you like to go?
C: Well I would like to do more in the UK. Although I’ve travelled a lot I do feel that there are lots of parts of the UK that I haven’t visited and I’d like to get more local shots too. Dav shows that you don’t have to travel far to get some gorgeous images.
T: And a final question – who would you like to see as the next Master?
C: A difficult one – from a travel perspective I guess my favourite would be Steve McCurry but I guess that is a long shot. Other than that probably someone like David Ward – something different, an excellent photographer and a fitting next Master.