Inside this issue
I engage with, and respond to, landscape on a physical and psychological level. Experiencing the senses of place while walking. Creating images; collecting fragments of my journey to question the past and experience the present whilst creating personal mythologies on my journeys. I am a practised printer and derive as much pleasure from the print process as the photographic.
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.
Among the many things that came up while talking to Stephen Segasby was the role of perspective. Early in the interview, Stephen mentions that as well as needing time to attune ourselves to a new place, leaving the familiar allows us to re-evaluate what we have done there. We all have a tendency to be too close to our own practice, for the making of images to be our paramount concern. In his answers, Stephen gives you plenty of other things to consider, and hopefully, after reading the feature you will be prompted to think about what you do, and why you do it and may gain some insights of your own.
Can you tell us something about where you grew up and live now, and the extent to which that has shaped you and your interests?
I grew up and lived in Norfolk for most of my life. That was until 3 years ago. Being outdoors was something I was brought up with and outdoor leisure was a way of life to our family whilst growing up. I have many early memories of Wales and the coast especially. Camping holidays and camper van life is in my blood but I have only just realised that having bought my own camper. I think this has had a significant impact upon my work as I like to travel and journey making work as I do so.
The Norfolk landscape is a fascinating place; it has a multitude of environments, landscapes, waterways and coastline that offer an awful lot of interest but granted not the awe of more mountainous regions. Being able to ‘absorb’ a place and ‘consider’ it fully is something I really learned in Norfolk. I closed off my time in Norfolk walking across it from North to South along the Peddars Way and this features at the centre of a large body of work I am currently editing.
Leaving Norfolk for Cambridgeshire for a short period was not that much of a shock to the system. I have always been fascinated by the Norfolk/Cambridgeshire fens which kept my interest and I often made trips to the borders of the 2 counties.
Moving to Yorkshire 2 years ago has been really interesting. I have found myself ‘learning’ all over again about a new place if that makes sense? It has allowed me the space to really consider all my previous work from Norfolk. Several series I worked on whilst in Norfolk have now come together and being separated has allowed a fresh perspective on the work I was making. It has been a tremendous learning exercise and I am busy pulling all the Norfolk work together. The landscape and historical culture are so different in Yorkshire, a big reason we moved here, and although I am making work I don’t think I have really got to the soul of the place.