|I refer to the ballet dancer in my images as K. Thorn she is however a figment of ones imagination, a zephyr, a fleeting glimpse of perfection captured in a micro second. She can pose wonderfully and she suffuses my images with a life they would otherwise not possess.
Finding her was a turning point in my life I'd loved figure in the landscape images since finding the work of Anne W Brigman about fifty years ago. I knew exactly what I wanted and until I found K I'd failed at every attempt.
As a 12 year old I used the family Kodak Brownie 127 and realised that what I saw was not what I got.
Many years of hands under the enlarger light enabled me to approach what I saw and having nothing else I was quite satisfied. The first version of Photoshop and clones were given away with roller scanners in 1989, I got mine second hand in 1994 and was able to use it as a digital darkroom.
In the nineties I had sixteen exhibitions of my self printed B&W work in the UK midlands and from 2015 to 2018 I had twenty two screenings of my video work world wide.
In 2012 I submitted ten toned Cyanotypes to the Royal Photographic Society and I was awarded their Licentiate distinction. Sadly I had to explain what they were, the RPS is inkjet and photo club orientated, most of whom know nothing about the history of photography. One exception is Michael Pritchard the DG of the RPS who does know and is trying to do something about the lack of knowledge he is also a thoroughly nice bloke and great to talk to.
My Cyanotype prints are in the permanent collection of the Herman Shine Museum of photography in Nova Scotia and are in the "Blueprint to cyanotypes" book published by AlternativePhotography.com
I attended a night school photographic class in my teenage years, George Bott the tutor and a professional photographer was wonderful. Later in life I assisted a City & Guilds tutor, showing students how to print from negatives. I then undertook two C&G modules myself and obtained distinctions in both.
For those who don't know what this means; The modules consist of a project outline, a minimum of ten images which you must print yourself, each image having a why and a full technical explanation, your current path through the history of photography from a personal viewpoint in depth and with insight, a dissertation on a particular photographer with a critique of two images, your preparatory work with explanations. The tutor gives ongoing help and judges your work, the final arbiter is an interview with a Moderator. In the light of these the RPS distinctions fade away to zero.
I am an autodidact learning something when my interest is keenest. I have a collection of photobooks going back to 1840 I have gleaned more from these than anything else.