My journey to Fine Art Nature and Landscape Photographer Began Many Many Years Ago, With A Single, Highly Criticised Photograph...
I was six and living in Vietnam when I got my first camera, following in the steps of my father who was the family cameraman and photographer. It was a basic, miniature, automatic film camera small enough to fit in one of his closed hand.
I soon discovered the fun of using it.
I still remember the excitement when my mother and I headed to the shop to collect my first ever prints. The man went through the handful of photographs that weren’t blank or too dark and stopped over one in particular.
He could not understand why I had taken “such an unexciting photograph of an external staircase dappled in shade”.
To me, however, it represented the simple vision of shade falling like rain and dancing joyfully on our stairs. It rocked gently with the wind in the foliage on a warm, early summer morning. It was beautifully simple and incredibly unique. And that particular photograph, just because he singled it out, was to remain with me forever.
Dormant initially, it was to resurface much later as a symbol of my early imagination and the fuel to my determination to embrace it and express it.
My Perfect Life On The Fast Lane Was About To Take A Turn
After completing a Baccalaureate in Art and Literature, photography became a serious hobby.
I purchased a fully manual Nikon from a friend and started to record faithfully my journey on Earth, step by step, the people I met, the places I went to, my family, my creations… while life took me on a computing career on the edge of the city of Edinburgh.
There, I was living in the fast lane and loved it but I was so busy working that I did not realise how little time I had left for anything else, important things too.
When I got pregnant, I moved in the midst of beautiful countryside at the edge of the Scottish Highlands.
Eventually, I had to accept I had to give up my career as my partner was already commuting long distance daily. I was determined that our daughter would not grow up without a parent at her side.
The Inevitable, My Way
Unable to find any local job for my skills, photography took a dominant role in my life.
After buying as many photographers’ publications as I could find and researching more online, I taught myself enough to find inspiration and define my style.
I had become a serious amateur and the proud owner of a semi-professional Nikon camera.
I Found Myself In The Middle Of The Pool
In 2006, as I had just lost my mother and grandmother, I accidentally launched my business by photographing a friend’s wedding.
From the middle of the pool and without any business and marketing training, I went on doing what other photographers did: weddings, events, portraits and commercial photography.
I attracted the attention of some prominent luxury businesses and charities and my work appeared in a number of well-established publications around the world.
Then I Lost It All
I loved the photography side but, deep inside, I wasn’t happy. I was spending less time than ever with my cameras and, while priding myself for creativity, I was understandably tied up to what the clients wanted.
When my health took a substantial turn for the worst in 2013 and I lost a significant amount of hearing, my motivation and passion yo-yoed in sync with the many ups and downs and challenges I was going through.
Business suffered and even came to a halt.
I Was On A Journey of Self-Discovery
Thankfully, I met a handful of energetic and determined people who gave me a chance to reflect in-depth, redefine myself and make sense of my life.
The question was simple: “to photograph or not to photograph”.
It took me on a journey of self-discovery starting from the photograph I had taken in Vietnam to my busy life, the stress, the illness, the exhaustion and the deep depression.
I realised that I had disconnected myself from nature as early as in my fast-paced and busy city life.
When I loved being out and about, uncovering nature’s secrets, finding analogies to life, humour, feeling the peace, the beauty and the oneness, nature slowly became framed by my windows.
I had let the stresses of everyday life and, later, those of my long-term condition affect me until illness became too consuming and I lost interest in everything around me, with the serious implications that had.
Thankfully, it also revealed that I had found a way to help myself.
I discovered that beyond the ability to record memories and be a reflection of myself, photography was being incredibly therapeutic.
The soothing emotional connections to the places I loved, the uplifting qualities of colours and textures, the invigorating energy of light and movement and the healing powers of stimulated thoughts had pulled me through, fuelled by the excitement I felt each time I knew I had just captured a great photograph.
I found this excitement to be as profound and powerful as the emotions I felt when I saw my child’s face for the first time, staring into her gentle, round, beady blue eyes.
The strength and depth of these positive emotions and the joy brought by photography were helping me cope better, pulling me out of depression each time.
I finally found that my copying mechanism and self-preservation instinct, had altered my vision.
I could see colours, shapes and textures but felt everything else. I could break down and rebuild the world I saw back into coherent scenes clear from clutter, full of beauty and harmony, humour and love for the awe-inspiring planet we share.
I Knew What I Had To Do…
Today, I create original fine art photographs to share my vision and my emotional experiences.
Inspired from nature, my photography explores camera techniques, post-processing mastery and abstraction right to the frontiers of etherealism and surrealism.
Deep-rooted in psychology, I believe my photography has the power to sooth and heal, invigorate and uplift, inspire and stimulate, challenge, puzzle and provoke.
Of course, the photographs themselves do not have healing powers, they are not physically magic.
Yet, beyond what they represent, evoke or inspire, it is the emotions they create, the thoughts they generate and the journey of visual and emotional discoveries they take us on, right back to ourselves. The journey will be as unique as you are.
The emotions, thoughts and journey work hand-in-hand with our natural survival instincts and our inner cravings for love, peace, beauty and harmony to trigger our body’s own healing powers, each photograph becoming a positive link in the chain of our healing path.
To add my photography to a calming retreat, that it be in the heart of your home or your office, not only can help you escape from the daily stresses of life but reconnect with nature and yourself.
I hope you enjoy my work and I look forward to your likes, comments and shares.
With many thanks to Rhonda, Mark, Jenny, Carla, Dawn, Susan, Louise, Katharine, Nigel and Cilla.
CONSULTANCY & TRAINING
Dedicated to helping people and businesses in Scotland to promote this beautiful country, I offer 1-2-1 and group training in Commercial and Landscape photography.
Whether you want to discover how to improve your photography and promote your business in the best way possible or simply want to improve your photography or learn the techniques you can see on this website, I will organise a bespoke training for your specific needs.
IT'S ABOUT SCOTLAND
LIGHTSCAPE CREATIONS is based by Blairgowrie, Perthshire, Scotland and although I primarily cover Perthshire, Angus, Dundee and Fife, I serve the whole of Scotland, so do not hesitate to contact me. I look forward to discussing your requirements and ideas.
More later on nature Fine Art and Landscapes of Scotland.