Originally from Edinburgh, I was lucky enough to move to Strathspey with my family in 2014 after many years of holidaying in the area.
I’ve always taken photographs, but I began to take it more seriously about after my eldest son was born, in part because it was something creative I could fit in around a young family. I take photographs to record what we do and how my children grow – and I also pursue my landscape photography, seeking to use the camera as an artistic tool. I’m entirely self-taught.
Taking photographs means for me living with my eyes open, even when I don’t have my camera to hand. I rarely aim to take a particular photograph; usually I respond to the moment, to a particular view or framing or light. I want my photography to help me see the world anew, and to help capture the magic of a place. I'm increasingly thinking of my work as a visual equivalent of "magic realism" - landscape photography with a bit of magic added in, something a bit unusual or unexpected, to make you look at it again.
I think the camera always lies – even a “realistic” photograph can never be the same as actually being somewhere, feeling the wind on your face, hearing the sounds of a place, seeing it all around you. The image has been taken at a certain moment, with a certain light, and framed in a certain way – it’s always mediated. So rather than try to make an image that looks exactly like the place, I’ll process it to get something recognisable but transformed, trying to get a magic back in through working with the image. Sometimes that’s through just a bit of simple processing; other times, I'll use my own textures for a very different type of photograph. I spend as much time working with the images in my “digital darkroom” as I do getting out and about to take them. You have to start with a good photograph in the first place; and then I work with it, using textures. These are all photographs that I’ve taken of textural items such as grass, bark, waves, rocks. I blend these – sometimes as many as a dozen – with the original image to get the effect I want. I never use ready-made filters, or alter the composition of the original photograph. In some ways I think of myself more as an artist who uses a camera as a tool, than as a photographer.
I sell through a number of outlets in Badenoch and Strathspey, and exhibit regularly in the area - for details see the Exhibitions and Where to Buy page.
Read an interview with me
by Kyla Ball of The Laundry Gallery (Strathspey and Badenoch Herald, October 2019).
I hope you enjoy the pictures, and if you have any comments, I'd love to hear from you.
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