I’m a keen photographer living in Leicestershire, UK. You could say that photography is in my blood. Both my dad and my aunt (his sister) were active photographers going back to the 1950s setting up their own dark room and my dad was in the photography trade for most of his working life. I grew up with cameras surrounding me.
The first ever camera I could call my own was a small, fully automatic, 110 film cartridge camera. It was so “cheap and cheerful” it was very nearly disposable. It suffered from huge parallax issues but I still derived immense pleasure from taking my photos and sending my films off to be processed.
Eventually, seeing my keen interest, my dad let me have his old Rolleiflex SL35 system – a huge upgrade. I used this for years despite the fact that the shutter was very much on the way out.
When I was in a financial position to do so I bought a Canon EOS 500N film SLR soon after it was released. I used this until I started toying with early digital cameras in the early 2000s. After trying a couple of compact cameras I eventually took the plunge for a Canon EOS 20D in 2005.
I won’t go on about all the cameras I’ve owned and used since then. I’ll just say that I still have a Canon “kit” and I also have a Fujifilm “kit” – with various lenses and bodies. I also have a few vintage cameras, the pride of which is a 1945 Rolleiflex TLR. It’s battered and battle scarred but it works.
I can never bring myself to sell a camera, they all feel like friends, so I have way too many…
I particularly enjoy taking photographs of live music. Small local venues, dodgy lighting rigs – but lots of atmosphere. Those stages where they just have a few spotlights to illuminate the band are my favourite; the spotlights create stark, contrasty, dramatic lighting which I lap up.
But I also enjoy shooting old and dilapidated buildings, landscapes and nature in general. For many years I ran a web site dedicated to my interest in prehistoric sites and I used my photography to illustrate each ancient site that I visited, writing up a little guide to describe it along with instructions on how to find it. I think it was at this point in my life (mid 1990s) when I started to see my photography as not just a way to record things but also to try and create an artistic statement. It is really my only artistic skill. All the rest of my family could draw, paint, create music – I was just awful at those things so the outlet for my expression was my photography.
I use this blog to record my thoughts and to share some of my photos. I have also been a subscriber to Flickr since 2005 and many of my photos can be found there. There’s some uploaded there that I’m very proud of and many that I’m rather embarrassed about. I should probably take the time to edit what’s there but it’s one of those things I just never get around to doing.
I’m under no illusion of ever making my living from my photography but I have had a few published in the form of magazine covers, also to illustrate magazine articles and in books, oh and one album cover.