Photography has always called me, but until we moved here, I really had no time to learn any photographic skills. I would simply take snapshots, usually of family, friends and pets.
The first photographs I took on this property were snapshots too. A quick, unthinking capture of a bird or plant for identification. Sometimes I still do this. Sometimes there isn’t a chance to do anything else – especially where small, fast-moving birds are concerned. I found the more I knew about a species, the more I wanted to capture in the photograph. Are the colours right? Can you see the leaves? How do I show the background clearly and precisely?
These aims led me to concepts of lighting, depth of field, composition and other photographic techniques. As I learned, my photographs improved.
It’s likely I would have continued along the same path if it were not for a visit from a friend who is an artist. As we sat and talked, overlooking the dam and the edge of the bushland, she remarked “This would be a good place to experiment with tonal landscapes.” She went on to explain the limited colour palate and focus on shapes and lines which form tonal landscapes. After she left, the idea stayed with me. The post Tonal Landscapes was my very first attempt at creating nature photography as art. Some of the photographs were more successful than others, but it started another journey for me.
From tone I went on to explore colour, texture, form and the finer details associated with bushland plants.
This year I participated in a local art show as an artist. I displayed eighteen photographs. All eighteen were taken here, on our fifteen acre property. I’m beginning to imagine a life where my passion and my career come together. The life of an artist isn’t an easy one to figure out though. I’m still working my way through many false starts and trying to find a way to promote and sell my work. Small successes keep me inspired and from here the road ahead looks like it is flooded with sunlight – if only I can work my way through the boggy patch leading to the path. With each step I take, I learn more.
Below are some of the photographs posted on this blog I’m most pleased with from an artistic perceptive . The caption below each one holds my thoughts about the photo.