Photography gives me the perfect incentive to travel, and that includes journeying to wonderful locations I might otherwise have never got around to visiting. Travel doesn’t always have to mean far, of course, and living on the doorstep of some of the best landscapes in the UK, I have spent many happy hours photographing in the Peak District.
There is something special, though, about researching and planning a foreign trip. I love traveling and would do it more often if I had the time and means. It expands my horizons - discovering other cultures and encountering landscapes that make me marvel at the wonders of nature. It also makes me appreciate home, but once back it’s not long before I’m thinking about the next trip.
Given my impulse to visit many of these locations is driven by a desire to return home with at least one powerful and memorable image, I realized early on in my photographic journey that I needed to define what a ‘good’ landscape image looks like - otherwise, how would I know which ones to pursue?
This is, of course, very personal but for me a truly great landscape image is all about the emotion it arouses in the viewer. There are thousands of ordinary, straightforward photos – what we call in photography ‘record shots’ - of every recognizable location in the world; just type a place in Google images and you will be awash with a choice. For me, though, what makes a landscape image special is that it makes you imagine what it would have been like to be there.
We have all seen these types of images, the ones that speak to you more than others. You experience an emotion as you look at them, like feeling the bitter cold of an Arctic mountain, the searing heat of desert dunes or the wild force of a terrifying storm as it whips up massive waves that crash into an isolated coastline. It’s an image that transports your mind to the instance the camera was clicked, this is the kind of image I try to capture. Here are the stories behind four of my favourite landscape photographs, where I hope you feel a sense of being there as I pressed the shutter.
LAVENDER FIELD AT DAWN - PROVENCE, FRANCE
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