Greetings from Yorkshire!
What a strange month it's been. More autumnal than summer. It's as if summer is saying, 'I'll give it a miss this year.' And as I type I have the kind of chest infection one would normally expect in the winter! Hopefully the antibiotics will kick in soon. Until only a few years ago I could guarantee you that the 2nd of August would be sunny (my birthday), but this year it was the wettest ever! Speaking of which, I turned 50 this month, 50!!! The less said about that the better. I am waffling, so moving on...
I thought I'd talk a little about a print I made yesterday. As you may have gathered I love the print process. A print is the living presence of a photograph. In fact, I'm becoming increasingly tired of sharing digital files online when that's not actually how I'm envisioning the final outcome in my mind. The paper choice is so varied and hugely affects the final aesthetic. I've been lucky enough to partner with Hahnemühle over the past few years, and they make some of my favourite print papers. Paper of course comes in many forms: matt, gloss, semi-gloss, pearlescent, metallic, textured versions of each, widely varying thicknesses, brightness and tones, all giving a completely different look. Every time I print there is an important choice to be made. For my Forest Visions handmade book, I chose a delicate rice paper. Its tactile feel really enhances the mood of the very emotive images.
I wanted to try something completely different. I have always loved all things Japanese and for a while now I've been intrigued by the 'Washi' (which simply means Japanese paper) setting on my Canon 1000 Pro. I've been following Awagami Factory on Instagram and just had to order a few samples to test out. As with anything Japanese, every type of paper from Awagami has a beautiful tactile quality. You can feel the dedication to the process. In the image above you can see the wonderful fibres which are interwoven throughout this particular paper, Premio Unryu. I felt that the organic nature of the paper really suited this minimal nature scene from a lake in Arashiyama, Japan. I'm thrilled with the result to be honest. Of course this paper doesn't suit everything. Awagami do also produce more generic print papers, very comparable to some of those in the Hahnemühle range, such as Bamboo.
This print is now available to buy, I've produced a very limited edition of 5 - here.
Of course the irony is that I'm sharing this digitally and a photograph online never does a print justice. I am very fond indeed of this meditative scene. It simply breathes!
I'm looking forward to sampling many more of these very special papers. If you'd like any online tuition to help with your printing, don't hesitate to get in touch. Printing can be something of a dark art, and I'm sure that my many years of experience can put you on the right track.
As I mentioned earlier in this post. I'm left a little tired of sharing my work online. Of course it's great that one can reach so many people, but there's nothing like seeing the final, printed outcome. So it's with great joy that my first zine 'Forest Visions' will be available to order very soon. I'm impatiently waiting for the proof version. Hopefully in my next update you'll be able to order a copy :)
I made the first image for Forest Visions in 2014, so it's only taken me nine years to get around to it! The series was shortlisted for Black + White Photographer of the Year back in 2015, much to my surprise! Now I'm familiar with the zine making process, expect a flurry incoming.
The rest of the year for me will involve preparing, once again, to visit Japan where I'll be lecturing at Musashino Art University. It's the most amazing opportunity but a lot of work.
Lastly, I have availability for Spurn Point Coastal Visions workshop in October, and Winter Solitude workshop in January 2024. They seem a way off at the moment but they'll soon be here and often fill up at the last moment. To avoid disappointment book here. I'm really looking forward to these!
Did you know, you can now show your support with buy me a coffee? Every little helps with the ongoing projects that I'm working on, and is hugely appreciated.
You can also subscribe to my YouTube, where I'm working on some films!