Spending the past two months working on my new photographic strand of work alongside my painting practise has been an interesting journey so far. Following the photographic course at Leeds College of Art I had an overall concept for this new work but as always, since getting out in the field, it has evolved into two strands.
I consider this a blessing as it shows the great many possibilities which lies in the type of work I wish to create. Keeping it aligned to the rest of my practise hasn’t been hard either, as I find both mediums fluid, interchangeable and relevant.
Original land artists such as Richard Long in the 70s didn’t see photography forming any part of their work, nowadays photography has the instant appeal of being able to reach masses with a specific message. Similar in thought process to Andy Goldsworthy, our goals are intertwined as we both want to understand nature by directly participating in it as intimately as possible. Photography is a powerful tool capable of shaping our view of the world and it allows me to personally convey the world as I see it around me.
Instead of focusing on the one project it has become two parts of an ever-evolving series. Stemming from my earlier work of creating temporary interventions in the landscape, I now look to ‘ready-made’ permanent installations already situated in the landscape. One aspect continues my exploration of urban marks on the landscape, whilst the other dives into signs. Some are integrated into nature, others have been obscured completely or partially by nature. What do all these markers signify in our increasingly artificial world?
My search hasn’t been subject to simply finding photographic sources but one of investigation into light conditions, depth of field, composition, perspective, colour, motion, texture and detail. The more I photograph, the more I find that the landscape is a part of me and so the end photographic result will consequently become a construct of both parts. As Franco Fontana was quoted “I embrace the landscape, become the landscape and bear witness to the landscape.”
The next stage will be post-production of the new photographic images I have taken and I expect these will not remain static. I endeavour to experiment with them digitally and physically. Finally this will result in conversations as to how display them in my ongoing residency space at The Gallery at St George’s House in Bolton (this Saturday).