Inside this issue
UK born and bred I am a light-hearted and inquisitive person by nature. I have been interested in photography since my mid-teens though my first forays were less than conventional - shooting still pictures and video of skydivers during my time in the Army. As a keen outdoors person I am fascinated by nature in all its forms, ferocity and frailties. I use digital media and the full spectrum of colour to capture the natural world around us. Not keen to spend hours at the computer I prefer less time post-processing and more time experimenting in-camera. I work a lot like a film photographer, taking my time with composition, using available light and pre-visualising the end image.
Subject, as it is to the weather systems blowing in from the North Atlantic Ocean, and with its rugged topography, the North-West Highlands of Scotland, are best known for producing images of a tempestuous nature. There are times, though, especially in the early winter and spring mornings, when peace and tranquillity can pervade. At these times, before the heat of the sun rising above the valley walls stirs the still air, the surface of the lochs in the bottom of the straths and glens becomes mirror-like – perfectly reflecting the shore and skyline above.
I love capturing these moments, exploring not only the geometry and symmetry created within the framed image but also how they can mess with our heads, especially when a normal point of reference, the sky, is removed from the top of the frame. This can, for many viewers, bring to the fore a phenomenon called ‘unconscious inference’ - the power of the mind to piece together incomplete data using assumptions based on previous experience. Drawing on past experiences, however, is not a skill we are born with; so these types of encounter can take us back to the first few days of life. Back to a time when, as babies, we see the world upside down - because our brains haven’t yet learnt to flip the raw visual data. An uneasy feeling, as anyone new to looking at the ground glass of a view camera, will attest!