What do you experience as you view these photographs and what story do they tell? Did you know that the guy by the cross has recently suffered a sad loss and is lost in his own thoughts as the sun rises? Did you work out that the two guys with the scope have been observing a drug drop at at sea and are making notes having called in details for the arrest? Maybe now you have worked out that the two boats on the horizon are involved in the drug drop.
How does that fit with the stories you told? Which photographs triggered some emotions? Which emotions and do you know why?
This gets me thinking about photograph, emotions and narrative. A photograph has something that each of us will see in a different way. There is a narrative that comes out for each of us and our emotions are impacted. Then I told you what the photographs are about which interferes with your own story. You are looking for confirmation but the new narrative I have given doesn’t fit or it does and you can accept it. You will have a reaction though,
Actually the first shot was taken on my way to a monthly birding sea-watch we do on the Spanish coast on the first Saturday of the month. We count birds for three hours to track migration patterns. The cross always catches my eye and I planned to get this shot at sunrise. I was lucky a runner came along and sat by the cross. In the second image there is a discussion about whether we were seeing Balearic or Cory’s Shearwaters. In the third ships in the distance as one of the pleasures of just looking at the sea. It was an amazing day not captured on camera as we saw over 300 Shearwaters and more than 50 Gannets diving in the sea in a feeding frenzy. All that was missing in the moment was the David Attenborough talk over.
I am a Photographer. As well as taking many photographs I am currently studying for an MA in Photography at Falmouth University. I will direct my attention through the lens of my camera for the next couple of years and see what shows up. I see a photograph as a little bit of magic capturing a moment in time. If successful it surprises and engages your emotions. It tells a story about the wonders of being alive or tells us what we need to change to make it a better world to live in. That is enough for me to get going and then like walking a 1000 miles, which I did across the UK in 2010, or walking 200 miles across Cyprus, which I did in November last year, it is one step at a time.
I was a writer. The title of my unpublished book was ‘You Would Have Done The Same.' It is about a successful guy in love with his wife who lets her die when he discovers her in the process of committing suicide. The title gives a clue as to what I think you would have done. The book is 200 pages long. I found it cathartic to write it but after two years of work and reviewing with agents decided it probably needed another 2000 hours to get the whole book up to the standard of some of the pages. Writing is great but it is a lot of sitting down so I decided to get out and walk, play tennis, play bridge, go birding, watch football at Nottingham Forest, Arsenal and Valencia and anywhere else if I can, meditate, cook and eat. I was a writer who has so far failed to become an author.
I was a young man who loved Mathematics and thoroughly enjoyed getting a BSc at Liverpool University. While there I went often to Anfield and the Philharmonic Hall. I was all set on doing a PhD until I went for interview practice at BP and got seduced by the excitement of an International business career. BP was a great adventure building trading teams and businesses in London, Antwerp, Cleveland Ohio and Singapore. Fabulous people and some great challenges and also very hard work, constant jet lag and lots of fun along the way. I married Karen, my stunning wife, and had the most amazing time with her and our three boys Alex, Tom and Dan. She has multiple sclerosis and we have taken on many challenges together but somehow keep creating a new normal against the horrors thrown our way. She is the love of my life.
After BP I decided to coach senior executives and quickly realized I had a lot to learn
about what makes people tick. I had a fantastic 18 months on the International Programme of the Cleveland Gestalt Institute. A great faculty and a
wonderful group of people on the programme. We studied and worked in Dingle, Singapore, Holland, Cape Town and
Lisbon. This also got me interested in the way we think and make decisions so I studied for an MSc in Psychology atUniversity College London in 2010. The
Masters was in Cognitive and Decision Sciences and I found it fascinating what
we do know but also how much we don’t know about how we think and make
I loved coaching and making a difference. I got a number of people to hear themselves, remove some of their own chains and free up the way they thought about the world. I remain fascinated by how people react to and engage with the world. My Masters thesis was why do two people given the same information make different decisions? Put simply, it is because each of us are unique in the way we are constructed.
Since returning from Singapore I found English winters tough so moved to Spain where I now live. The people are lovely, the scenery amazing, food delicious and the sun shines all the time. Almost.
All of these experiences will feed in to my time now as a Photographer. Three motivations I am lucky to have are enthusiasm, curiosity and a continuous interest in learning. All the time I look forward to meeting old friends and making new friends and experiencing this wonderful life together.