I had a curious beginning printing forensic photography—while grotesque, the crime scene pictures revealed a story told from minute detail to a much wider gamut. This was followed by a foray into capturing decisive moments and energy through professional sports photography.
The story telling influence of the former combined with the dynamic essence of latter, has created a unique approach and processes developed that have informed my work as a photographer of architecture over the past two decades.
While my current practice genre sounds quite specific, it offers me the broadest possible view on the world: landscapes, the built environment and people are all treated with the same democratic eye. I have not trained in architecture and photography was self-taught.
The built environment, while ever changing, represents some of the more permanent effects on our world. When people move, buildings remain, they stand and gain the mark of time. They decay and show age, they become embedded with signs of life. By decoding these signs left by time, we uncover stories, insights and the vitality of human life. Decay is the very last layer of beauty applied to a building. The mark of time, trees growing, materials fading, the marks made by inhabiting a space. That’s the powerful stuff.
Discovering knowledge through naivety, learning through necessity and expanding the mind’s experiences by accepting that there are always new ways of seeing, provides a richness to the way in which one observes and creates: with a continually fresh perspective.
For me it was always about the required, continual growth—that naive energy is really imperative. Learning, applying, and absorbing what you need, when you discover a demand for it. The concept that time adds a layer of depth that cannot be faked.
Whether it is a photograph, a building or an artefact, the unpredictable effect of time is most often, what adds to its value.
Photographs are, by nature, made of time. Started by the photographer and then exposed to the alchemy of time, to become charged with meaning.
Just as you don’t make a garden, you start a garden. Photography starts with the making of a picture, and it is then, when time is added, that the real alchemy begins. Time decides a lot about how photographs are used and viewed. Context changes everything. Photographs are literally made of time… a building concentrates history in one spot.