Inside this issue
Through nature and image-making I keep discovering who I am. The more I grow older, the more these two things merge together.
I’m a full-time landscape photographer mainly working in the forest of Fontainebleau, France.
My favourite place to photograph is the Fontainebleau Forest. From my first visit, I felt a strong bond and a natural attraction to it. A personal affinity as tangible as the imposing boulders that dot the landscape. I’m not happy to leave it, and when away, I find ease in knowing that I’ll soon be back there, which is also where home is.
I never thought I would describe a place in such a way, to the exclusion of all other locations, known or unknown. Two decades of travelling and relocations and the consequential crescendo of an ever more abstract concept of “home” that built in my mind made such attachment with any place highly unlikely.
But where is home if not in our minds? And what is a voice, if not the loudest expression of one’s self? So, how can I profess such surprising fondness for a real place, which coexists inside and outside my mind, to suddenly wanting to call it “home”? I do so for the voices in my head.
I had no knowledge of the existence of this natural area before moving next to it following my girlfriend’s career change. The first time I stepped on the sandy terrain of the Fontainebleau forest and gazed around the scenery, I heard a whisper in my ears telling me where to go. A longing feeling for this unknown geography materialised in me. As my visits to the forest increased, I heard my instinct speaking to me through this voice more often. At times, I would just hear, "Go that way", "Stay here", or "Look harder". Over time, my need to spend more time in the forest increased, and I began to trust and follow this voice more.