Inside this issue
Featured Photographer Revisited
Finn Hopson is a photographer from Brighton. Having grown up playing on the beach and the South Downs he has spent the last eleven years photographing them. In 2014 he opened the Brighton Photography Gallery.
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.
For this issue, we’re catching up with Finn Hopson. Tim visited Finn in 2015 shortly after he opened the Brighton Photography Gallery. There’s a lot to enjoy here, from how looking at the sea/water on a daily basis can prompt new thoughts and activities, to continuing to make beautiful images of the South Downs despite a pandemic. It does of course help if they’re on your doorstep, but the selection of images here – most of which were made during 2020 – do show the value of knowing your home ground whether it’s finding a new location, developing ideas for future projects, or simply avoiding the crowds.
It’s hard to believe that it’s been six years since Tim talked to you. At the time, you’d recently set up the Brighton Photography Gallery. I’m sure you anticipated there would be challenges ahead, even without a pandemic. How have you coped, adapted, and remained motivated?
July 2021 will mark seven years since I opened the gallery. It still feels like a new thing to me, but this is the longest I’ve ever done anything and my children can’t remember a time before we had the place. No one is more surprised than me that it has worked, and it’s worked better than I ever imagined when I took a chance on it in 2014.
When Tim visited me in early 2015 we were in the middle of a huge building site for the Brighton i360 viewing tower, which made the first three years here particularly challenging. With hindsight, this was a really good test of resilience and self-motivation and that experience has helped me cope with the new challenges of the pandemic.
As of March 2021, the gallery will have been closed to the public for six of the last twelve months and there’s obviously very little I can do about it, so I’ve had to try and remain rather stoic and hope that better times will return.