on landscape The online magazine for landscape photographers

Joe Cornish’s 2013

Review of 2013

Joe Cornish

Joe Cornish

Professional landscape photographer.


We asked a number of our contributors to answer a few questions on their past year and what 2014 holds.

1) What have you been doing photographically in 2013, anything new & different or exciting trips that got the juices flowing ?

I was involved in a lot of exhibition mounting, at the Station in Richmond, and at the gallery in Northallerton, both my own shows and group shows and collaborations. I also chaired the judging of the competition, Best Shots, and joint-led a large number of tours and workshops, with Mark Banks, Tony Spencer, David Ward, Eddie Ephraums and Paul Saunders. There were some real epic trips, two of which I would call life-changing… to Antarctica with Mark Carwardine, and to the European Arctic (Svalbard) with David and Tony.

2) What have you been shooting with most in 2013?

A real mix actually: the Linhof Techno and Phase One IQ180, the Nikon D-800, and also the delightful Fujifilm XE-1.

3) What is your favourite image from 2013 and what is the background to it?

Although mostly covered in ice and snow, some of Antarctica's islands have the most beautiful, exposed ice-smoothed rock, such as this pink foreground granite. With distant icebergs it is a place of primeval grandeur.

Although mostly covered in ice and snow, some of Antarctica's islands have the most beautiful, exposed ice-smoothed rock, such as this pink foreground granite. With distant icebergs, it is a place of primaeval grandeur.

It is hard to choose between images made in Antarctica and the Arctic, but if it has to be one then I will go for this picture made (with the D-800 and 24mm Nikkor PCE) on the Forge Islands (Antarctic Peninsula). It was the only chance I had to make images while completely alone in the Antarctic, and I did so having 'slipped my group' and jogged up to the northern edge of a small island where we camped out (in bivvy bags) overnight under the Antarctic sky. So many memorable elements together! We also held an auction on board ship later in the voyage, and this image was bid for to raise money for a wildlife charity, and it did well too, so, looking back, I am totally delighted with it.

4) What does 2014 hold? New books? projects? trips ? or even new gear…?

I will be working on one new book of British landscapes and will be planning and researching two other new books which will keep me busy into 2015 and beyond. The opportunity to visit the polar regions in 2014 has encouraged me to return, so that is on the medium-term agenda, project and trip-wise. I also intend to experiment more (easy to say, not so easy to do!), and try to live out the idea I promote at workshops, that landscape photography is primarily an artistic activity.

As far as equipment is concerned, wouldn't it be nice to forget about it all and just concentrate on picture making?! In reality, it looks as if I will eventually 'upgrade' to a 2 series Phase One back this year, although whether you can really upgrade from the IQ180 is debatable. I also expect a Sony A7R to appear in the post in the next day or two…

5) Portfolio of 6 personal images from 2013

6) What are your predictions for the industry (either technical or general)

Exciting but traumatic. Pure curiosity encouraged me to buy a Nokia 1020 phone a few months ago, and in its own way it's an absolutely wonderful (albeit highly niche) camera. If you “imagineer” outward from there you have to worry for the existing giants of the industry, that Apple, Samsung, Sony and even Nokia will simply overwhelm them before long. I am probably quite wrong, but the trend to 'shoot and share' pictures is an unstoppable tide that will inevitably change camera design (it has already done so) and perhaps leave us marginalised, as enthusiasts, with far fewer but ultimately superior, more 'focussed' cameras that do what we need well, and drop the pointless extras (like video). They will probably go up in price, as the market will be smaller, and they will require more mechanical engineering input (better lenses, more robust, weatherproof camera bodies).

(Phase One and Leaf seem to be the only 'pure' photographic products in the market place at the moment.)

7) What are your personal ambitions or goals for 2014

I am in search of time. Time to do nothing in particular. Time to do less, and think and reflect more.


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