When I think about why I take photos, and what it does for me, this is what I come up with.
It’s about not living on the surface, skating over the rich and beautiful experiences that life has to offer. It’s about diving in and connecting with the mesmerising qualities of light, the stark melancholy of dark thunderous clouds, the rich beauty of the deep shades of greens and opulent colour of a summer garden, the intriguingness of graffiti on a crumbling ancient wall or a face that feels un-watched and so reveals the mind’s emotions.
Photography pulls you out of your busy mind filled with to-do lists, emails that need sending, shopping that needs to be done, chairs that need to be fixed. It pulls you away from all of that and it plants you right here and firmly in this world.
When I am teaching people how to see like a photographer, they think I am teaching them how to see like a photographer.
But I am not.
It’s something way deeper, way bigger and way more impactful than that.
It’s like how people think when I am teaching them how to use a camera, people think I am teaching them how to use a camera.
What I am doing is giving people the tools (and the key) to unlock their creativity. And what that brings is an incredible freedom.
It’s about going from feeling like being just a cog that’s turning in the machine, and instead becoming an explorer of the deep mysteries of this incredibly, complicated, messy and mesmerising world.
Photography is a gateway to enjoying the richness and beauty of the world. It’s an excuse to take yourself off to explore, to examine and to dwell in places you find breathtaking; it’s a licence to talk to strangers and photograph everything that’s weird and wonderful about them; it’s a reason to get up at 3am and watch the life-affirming beauty of a sunrise.
It’s capturing that feeling of watching dusk fall over a wild deep blue ocean or in the chair lift as it slowly rises above the epic vastness of the Alps.
It’s a gift to experience life in a deeper and richer way.
That’s what photography brings to my life.
The tools I bring to teach photography come from my 20 year career as a photographer, an explorer and a creator. I have an insatiable curiosity and a desire always to make my images better, more interesting and most of all to have connect more with the viewer.
“When people look at my pictures I want them to feel the way they do when they want to read a line of a poem twice.” Robert Frank