A journey towards peace and quiet

April 12, 2021
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It is 8 weeks into the third lockdown. This one is different; it has a different feel to it. I want to say resignation, but that would be wrong. I feel less inclined to go out. Less, inclined to take my camera anywhere. Less inclined to exercise. Definitely less inclined to write. This is now the fourth, no fifth time I have started writing this. The peace has gone, the quiet remains but only in the physical sense.

Uncertain

Things just seem so uncertain. I will have to go back to work just don’t know when. As of last night, it looks like mid-April. I will be handing my notice in just don’t know when. At some time in the future I will be changing my life just don’t know how or when. I don’t know if I will have to change my car if I will have enough money and where the balance is coming from. Which country I will be working in. If my work will be good enough. How I will get my name made. I don’t know even if I will have a day job. I think I will, but nothing is certain.

On the flip side. I love the area I live in. It is not dramatic but has a subtle feel to it. I love the flat fenlands, the fog, the wind and the bleakness of it all in the depths of winter. Despite them being a pain, I love the floods and how they temporarily change the landscape and I love the coastline which, again, is not dramatic but has a softer beauty to it. I love the feel of isolation to the reed beds.

So, no, no craggy rocks no massive mountains dominating the vista. No bursts of light cresting the tops of mountains. Nothing like that. Still beautiful though. This is one thing this most recent lockdown has shown me. What we have is really important. To be here in the moment and relish where we are and what we have. Enjoy the peace and quiet.

Lakes

Here I am sat by one of the local Lakes, still high from the recent floods. Most of the daily noises made by people fade away, just left with the soft lapping of the water on the shore and a variety of birds. A watery sun tries to come through the clouds and fails but in trying it sends a highlight across the surface of the water. The breeze picks up a bit, the ivy-covered trees starting to rustle and the familiar roaring in my ears as the wind blows over them.

I am happiest sat here, miles from the town, with few people around enjoying the peace and quiet, camera by my side. It is like one of those mindfulness moments on spring watch but better and much, much more immediate. I wish I could capture these moments in an image.

The question that comes up when I am walking is How would I do it? I have only seen two or three photographers do it regularly and I am not sure they are aware they do.

The thoughts I have had so far are getting my viewers to imagine they are there with me. This is more than just a feeling of walking into the image but actually there with me, not just me showing you this place and time.

Taking the viewer on a journey

The viewer has to imagine the waves lapping on the shoreline. They have to hear the birds singing, the quiet of the place, and, most importantly, the peace it all engenders. Just for a moment, the world has stopped, they have to imagine nothing else matters you are just there at that time. This is not easy given the huge amount of pressure on their time and all the stresses they live with.

You just can’t take an image with these things in them. The subject and supporting elements have to suggest this. They have to take the viewer on a journey. To step into the world as it is for you, the photographer, at that precise moment.

The image has to be visually appealing and convey a meaning to get the viewer’s attention. Just for a moment take them to another world.

This may be why, while I look at landscape images quite a lot, they do little for me as I already see a lot of what the photographer does in my own photography. So, they have to stand out a little more. Take me a little further than I normally go.

To tell the story in a different way.

Thank you so much for reading this far. Please feel free to comment below or if you want to look at my images, they can be found on my Instagram feed by clicking HERE

 

Richard

 

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