I began my training in Glasgow then moved to Plymouth where I continued to study photography at Plymouth Art School. Now living and working in London as a Lecturer and Practitioner. I try to balance the demands of developing both my lecturing and personal work.
Lens-based, cameral-less, analogue and digital processes are all part of my image making.
Landscape, memory, portraiture and place have established themselves as the predominant themes in my photographic work.
2018 was the First World War Centenary, ‘Derivations’ examines the formal relationship between history and separation, loss and renewal.
Women have always been intrinsically linked to the still life genre ‘Derivations' delves into familial cycles of growth and decay by examining the personal history of a photo album, not concerned with the domestic per se but rather the narrative, the passage of time, and what has gone on in it. The women of Paisley are of huge significance and importance to me; however, it is my hope that they reach further than the individuals in front of the lens. By modifying these moments, ‘Derivations’ reflects on the legacy of early 20th century.
Somnolence Series. Inspired by the pictorial legacy of the Nightmare, by Anglo-Swiss artist Henry Fuseli. This series explores the subject of dreams and their relation to the subconscious. Frozen in the stasis of a dream state, the subjects of Somnolence are presented at the very extremes of hypersomnia. During the periods preceding sleep, different conscious states meld together to form long term memory; the series attempts to visualise these windows that occur each time we fall asleep. The trance-like nature of these images aims to resonate with a universal experience that resides at the borders of our memories.
Plant Portraits. These starkly lit images interrogate the minutiae of plant life, allowing natural forms to take on the role of image-makers. While leaves, seeds and buds make up the subject matter, the series of images represents less a botanical exploration than an adventure into the semiotics of natural objects. The photographic study seeks to isolate and amplify the familiar and often overlooked architectures of plant formations. The resulting images offer an array of contradictions to the viewer. The depicted rigidity of form contrasts with the metamorphosis being studied – the viewer is presented with immortal copies of short-lived foliage.
In the Edinburgh series flowering thistles are not pictured for their beauty, and 17th century Edinburgh is not portrayed in the service of ornament or nostalgia; rather, both become structural elements of an abstract visual language. Although there is clearly something not entirely realistic about these photographs, they nevertheless seem organically made, rather than artificially manipulated. These images are observations, inspecting the traces and stages of time.
'Progression' is a series of portraits of young art students constructed to portray the dignity, pride and, at times, the fragility of young adults. The large-format monochrome portraits contrast with the immediacy of their digital counterparts, depicting young women and men in poses that echo the disciplines of formal portraiture. Working with the slow and deliberate process of large-format paper negatives changes the relationship between the photographer, the sitter and the spectator. The ritual formed between the three parties creates a complex interplay of power, positioning and performance. This body of work started six years in 2012 and is ongoing.