Inside this issue
Photography became a passion for Nicki whilst living in Florida with her family. She uses the camera as a tool for expressing her love of art and nature in a creative way and will happily spend hours immersed in the Orcadian landscape in all weathers.
Nicki is a keen swimmer and a member of the celebrated Orkney Polar Bear Club. Swimming in crystal clear seas all year round without a wetsuit can be a challenge but is always a delight, especially for the encounters with curious wildlife such as seals and fulmars. A long tailed duck fly-past is always a special treat, however she is not so sure about the jellyfish. In 2012 Nicki was awarded a Fellowship in Visual Art by the Royal Photographic Society. She has exhibited extensively both in Britain and abroad and has work hanging in homes around the world.
In 2012 I paused by my local river and everything changed. I’ve moved away from what many expect photographs to be: my images deconstruct the literal and reimagine the subjective, reflecting the curiosity that water has inspired in my practice. Water has been my conduit: it has sharpened my vision, given me permission to experiment and continues to introduce me to new ways of seeing.
I have a folder on my computer titled ‘Nicki Gwynn-Jones’ that has been there for 2 years at the time of writing. You could see that as a sign of procrastination (Nicki will get that one!) but the delay in interviewing Nicki comes down to two things. I first came across her images on social media: as well as her delightful high key bird photography she had started to play with the landscape….. At the time I wanted to see how this developed – and the next thing I know she’s upped and offed to Orkney, so I had to see how this developed too. A number of us have been enjoying the images that she’s shared on social media this year of Orkney’s wildflowers and wild waves, and I just happened to message her on the day that she was putting the finishing touches to a new website. Clearly, this interview was in the tea leaves…. [Read Nicki Gwynn-Jones 4x4 portfolio]
Would you like to start by telling readers a little about yourself - your education, early interests and career?
Every Easter holiday during my childhood my parents would load up the camper van and drive the family from Worcestershire to the Scottish Highlands for a fortnight of hill walking, and one of my most abiding memories is of my father, camera in hand, fretting about the light - or lack of it. At the time I showed no inclination whatsoever to follow in his footsteps. Waiting around all day for something that might not happen? Not for me thank you! I was a keen violinist at school but I eventually graduated from the University of London with a degree in Hungarian. I was never brave enough to make use of it and taught swimming until 2014, latterly to adults of all abilities.