It’s taken me four years but I can now safely call myself a nature photographer. That’s worrying. The first time I was pleased with a photograph I took I began to worry that I had stopped learning and stopped experimenting. If you see yourself as an artist and you’re not disappointed with what you produce then it’s a sure sign of a stunting in your personal growth.
I needn’t have worried. Being pleased only lasted a day or two and then I was striving again to produce something better, different, more expressive and more compelling.
What I’m creating here will seem so out of date and even embarrassingly childish in just 20 years. Looking back at Eric Hosking’s breathtaking and groundbreaking work in bird photography, even from the 1980s and it looks like something any 12 year old with a cheap digital camera could produce if they had the access today.
Here’s a photograph I was momentarily delighted with.
The light is beautiful on this bright but cloudy Orkney day. It models the glorious tones on this Rock Pipit, making it pop off the screen.
As I walk back it rains and I get a great view of a rather bedraggled individual. The weather hasn’t dampened its enthusiasm for calling loudly and repeatedly.
And the weather hasn’t dampened my enthusiasm for portraying it, either.