The human form briefly crosses the landscape and overlays the textured rock but rather than dominating it, complements it and co-exists with it.
Plate made from a film negative exposed twice in a cardboard 35mm pinhole camera (The Populist) during a multi-day walk in the summer of 2019.
The print is a limited-edition etching on Fabriano Rosaspina paper with Charbonnel ink hand-printed from a photopolymer plate and can currently be purchased in Leamington Spa Art Gallery and Museum Winter Shop until March 2020.
In such traumatic times here in the UK, it really seems that much of what we have taken for granted over the last years is gradually draining away. Such things as rationality, decency, respect, imagination, the quest for truth, idealism and tolerance have been thrown onto a political bonfire of vanities. And who knows what lies on the far side of all this upheaval.
While I was choosing an image for this year’s International Print Exchange this one jumped out as a weird, wistful and very obvious candidate. I hope whoever receives it will take it as a hand of friendship as well as a slightly desperate wave for help.
The exhibition featuring prints from 25 local printmakers (including three of my photogravures from pinhole images) runs from Friday 30th August until Sunday 15th September 2019. See the Coventry Printmakers website at for opening days/times.
The opening Private View is 6pm-9pm Thursday 29th August at Classroom Gallery, 16 Lower Holyhead Road, Coventry, CV1 3AU and it would be great to see you there!
On a recent visit to the Welsh borders I began to experiment with making sound recordings of the same length as the exposure time of the photograph. The descending flood waters combed all the strands of grass in a strange and uniform direction back towards the racing current. On a dull day using paper negative in a beautiful little oak camera, four minutes was required. Listen to the environmental sounds of the exposure below.
This head amongst the grass is full of seed
pulsating with rich life when ending’s fear
blurs hopes and tries to lie when I still need
to see with open eyes. Now leaving here
I tread a path which winds between the trees,
not straight nor worn but forked and born
of chance encounters where others do not flee
but talk and lead me on, feeling less torn.
The gaze upon the dirt misses the sky,
where larks and swifts so light above the world
fill hearts with lift and liberate the sigh
of flesh which loves the earth on which it’s curled.
When running down, not up, on darker days
Find seeds, high ground, a lens to look both ways.