I have always been interested in photography but never really did anything about it. I took some courses, read some books, shot some weddings for friends and assisted on some location shoots.
It all got a bit more serious in the late 90’s when i got asked to take over the teaching of a photography course at a further education college. It gave me the confidence that i did actually know what i was doing!
Many jobs later, some commercial, some private, about 130 weddings (at the time of writing) and i’m still a work in progress. Every job has a learning curve and every image leads to another, hopefully, better photo.
I’m still interested in the processes of photography. Whilst my work is mostly digital i still shoot film, use pinhole cameras, work with polaroid (now Impossible) film and experiment with old processes. I’ve done some work on Daguerreotypes in the last couple of years (too expensive to carry on) and am now working on the wet plate collodian technique. It’s a steep learning curve but a fun one.
Below is my personal message i wrote for my degree in 2009. It feels a little pretentious now but it’s all still valid and is still an ongoing project.
I have been a photographer since the late 1990’s and have always had an interest in the processes of photography. Through experimentation with traditional photographic processes I became interested in the idea of capturing extended periods of time as opposed to the traditional photographic idea of the snapshot or moment in time, referencing the work of other photographers such as Tokihiro Sato and Hiroshi Sugimoto and Bourriaud’’s idea of Heterochronia: the multiple layering of time and place.
With this idea in mind I became interested in photographing the journeys we make: not the points of departure or arrival but the un-remembered, un-recorded periods of motion in-between, the routes and places (non-places) of transit: the motor-ways, roads, rail networks and pathways, the service stations and shopping centers, the areas that ultimately make up our modern landscape.
Through the use of traditional cameras and modern, modified digital SLRs i have attempted to capture the patterns and signs that these travels form in our lives: bringing these invisible, unseen patterns into the visible.
This work has become a form of painting, producing work of a more painterly, abstract nature. The word photography comes from the words PHOTOS and GRAPHOS meaning to paint or to draw with light. In fact some of the earliest work in the medium of photography was said to “be drawn by natures pencil. The work has now taken on the form of large, abstract landscape paintings, looking at the idea of the sublime, echoing the works of Turner and others. Like a form of action painting for the digital age, the journey provides the brushstrokes for the painting, nature provides the palette, and the camera provides the medium capturing our modern landscape as we travel through it.