Photographic Journeys was born quite naturally through my genuine and professional passion for photography. I’m looking forward to welcoming you on one of our courses and workshops. I want to show you how you can be a better photographer. It’s quite simple really.
Photography has been an integral and very important part of my life for over 30 years. The ability for a single photograph or image to capture, in the fraction of a second, something that is essentially here now and gone forever is very special, a non-verbal language or as some have called it; a moment of emotional impact. Being a real lover of travel, visiting new places, exploring different cultures and adventure, “Photographic Journeys” was born quite naturally through my genuine and professional passion for photography.
Also, my background in teaching all abilities at both school and University level, and of course travelling with a camera at all times. I shoot everything from abstract to landscape and portraits. After graduating in Photography from Art School in the mid 80’s, the accepted thing we all did was head to London (like sheep) and fight for the few assisting posts that were around. I happened to be lucky and I learned a lot in the different studios I worked in. Long days… hard work but a great experience in survival.
In the years since then, I have taken a post-graduate teaching diploma, taught a lot, shot for magazines, newspapers and remained true to my love of photography. However, I would never have guessed 25 years ago, that technology would have moved on so fast…. from FP4, Tri-X, and rolls of E6 which we spent hours perfecting in the darkroom with printers, safe-lights and trays of chemicals, this can be done now in a few minutes.
Or in an hour with a well shot RAW file and a Mac. What this has done, is make photography accessible to everyone. So easy a child could do it some say. This is true, but what it has also done is push the ‘bar’ up higher in terms of what we accept and perceive as ‘a great image’. Some classics will stand the test of time and some we look at and just wonder how we could ever think they were anything other than mediocre or at worst even dull.
Photography and the language of photography is a very powerful medium these days – more so than it has ever been and it’s becoming more widespread as technology develops – we’ve raised that bar very high and I believe…. it’s called ‘evolution’. Cameras are more sophisticated, lenses are optimised and sharper than they have ever been. AF, which we never had 25 years ago, is so good that we trust it more than our naked eye. The trick is to be able to use the camera technology well, but never lose sight of the fact that it’s just a tool.
No matter how complex, expensive and sophisticated it is, to capture a moment, and your eye and your brain are what will tell you what is right and what is probably …..mediocre – Change position, change lens or move on. Photography never lies – it documents moments, discovers real lives, explores cultures, and shows slices of time then brings it all back in a single flat 2-dimensional level, yet with a depth beyond that of the print or paper surface, and that I think, is why I have been so hooked on photography for over 30 years.
I was drawn back to working full time professionally and I resigned my post as Principal Lecturer at Anglia Ruskin University to complete an MA in Photography in 2010. 2 years researching and photographing empty spaces, abandoned hospital wards, empty rooms and isolation chambers of hospitals, homes and asylums across Europe became my focus and it was a hugely challenging, but rewarding voyage of discovery and learning process. Understanding the complexities of why we take pictures, what they say about us.
Then the final message they present is an important final realisation that sometimes we just like taking pictures and can’t explain why we like it. That’s ok, in today’s throwaway society we can afford to take lots of photographs and just enjoy it. Sadly though we lose a lot of those pictures in the digital ‘ether’. Never mind, we’d like to change the way you approach your photography and that’s why Neil and I carefully thought it out so that everyone can be a better photographer and present your ‘Journeys’ with us in something very special.
What you see here is just a small sample of styles I enjoy doing professionally and personally. I love an eclectic mix of portraiture, landscape, abandonment, abstract and my true passion travel – ‘people and cultures’ . I know for some of you reading this, photographing people can be really daunting, scary even, especially strangers, but trust me…..it is actually a lot more straightforward once you follow a few simple rules.
In the little spare time I have I am active in the two big professional associations that proudly stand to keep that ‘bar raised’ high in our world of professional photography and I mentor professionals and sit on the qualifications panel at the MPA (Master Photographers Association) I’m looking forward to welcoming you on one of our courses and workshops. I want to show you how you can be a better photographer. It’s quite simple really.