My grandfather was a well known early photo journalist and wildlife photographic
enthusiast and responsible for many popular postcards published by Judge and
Valentine. I helped him in his darkroom very occasionally rocking dishes. One of his cast
off Vest Pocket Kodaks was my first camera when I was 11. Small and quite sophisticated;
beyond me then. Then I won an Ensign Fulvue camera as a prize in a Children’s
Newspaper competition. However, my parents suffered badly in the war and we were too
poor to buy film. I mostly painted instead, which helped pay for my later education.
During army service my fiancée bought me a Frankar 6×6 folding camera in a beautiful
leather case when in Germany. For many years I thoroughly learned exposure and focus
settings and recorded our changing lives with it on Ilford FP4. As a student, with a
succession of early SLR cameras (Exa, Exacta – I loved the clunky Exacta) I photographed
fellow students’ work for a small charge. That helped pay for essential Whatmans and
Greens papers as well as for film! Severe illness in middle age deprived me of advanced
drawing and painting skills and photography took over. I often still handle image making
as if painting and drawing. Photography was also closely linked to my main professions.
My photographic interests now are landscape, abstract and nature, though for many
years I enthusiastically videoed Spanish life. Sadly that was on MiniDV tape that tech
abandoned so abruptly! They are kept but inaccessible.
Hardly a day goes by with no photograph. Image making became an obsession when
young, probably needing psychoanalysis! Generally I have sought to prioritise the positive
things in life. It is not fashionable photography, that I know, and choosing a small selection
is a bit nightmarish, compounded by the availability of increasingly sophisticated software.
Currently I use the Affinity suite and PhotoLab 6 and am trialling AI but find it too fierce.
Digital image processing 15 years ago cannot compare with the most recent and when
selections like this are made it is usually necessary to revisit. But the image is mostly from
the mind and only occasionally from the means.
I hope this selection is enjoyable and communicative. That is its purpose.