2020- The year that changed all

A year like no other descended upon us in March of this year with the Covid 19 pandemic throwing the whole world into chaos and misery.  The shock for us all was great. Nine months later, we are far from clear of this virus but there is some hope re the new vaccine  which we all hope is successful and plentiful. Many people in many occupations have fought to survive, and some have not managed to keep their businesses going or to keep their jobs.  Photographers that travelled widely, ran workshops etc have been hit especially hard as travel has been near-on impossible and in addition, people feel unsafe travelling, going to airports, being on trains and so on. So, many photographers have taken to online teaching, online camera club presentations, writing, updating their websites and of course, have been forced to photograph mainly within their locality. To begin with, many of us felt a lack of inspiration in going out with the camera and it was only as ‘the new normal’ became established that photographers went back to doing what they love best which is taking photos.

March 2019 for me did have an upside as I was awarded the title ‘Scottish Nature Photographer of the Year’ with my seascape photo at the Butt of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides. In addition this year I was awarded a bronze in the Paris Photo PX3 Awards plus honourable mentions in the Neutral Density Awards.

Three rocks Butt of Lewis
Three rocks Butt of Lewis Overall winner of Scottish Nature Photography awards 2019 and winner of the seascapes section

 

I too went back to photographing my local area and within a few minutes of my home at a place known as Pyes Mill Norfolk, I captured these shots throughout the year.

Pale Pyes
Pale Pyes

 

Lockdown 2 Dawn, Pyes mill
Lockdown 2 Dawn, Pyes mill

I love this simple location as it summarises a typical Norfolk broadland scene and it means I can walk to it as often as I like, and be home for breakfast! A few miles away in a place called Hardley, Norfolk which is in places below sea level, I also managed to capture a few scenes.

Covid sunset
Empty at Thurne

 

My exhibition at Aldeburgh gallery, Suffolk scheduled for April 2020 was sadly cancelled and I now have many of my framed and mounted exhibition prints adorning my walls. They are of course all for sale so feel free to contact me!

By July, we were ending our first lockdown and luckily the weather in England was good which meant relaxation for some by the coast, while others were still trying to save their businesses and keep their jobs.

Winterton Brooding

The year progressed and the reality of lockdowns, local and national, longer and shorter continued and we now find ourselves living with the impenetrable tier system. Luckily I managed two trips to my beloved Scotland, one to the Moray coast in the summer and one to Perthshire in the autumn, as well as some time in Northumberland in August.

Nairn Sunset

 

Ardclach Woodland scene

Summer photography is never easy but it was such a delight to be out with the camera so carried it with me throughout my time in Moray and Northumberland. I was pleasantly surprised by some of the shots.

Autumn in Perthshire was glorious, a mix of weather including wonderful Scottish mists which we all long for hanging over the lochs.

Perfection at Loch Faskally

Christmas 2020 will not be like any other Christmas has been for the majority of people. I feel that what most of us want is a 2021 that is healthier and happier. We will have to wait and see. We will also have to face the enforced difficulties of being an isolated country away from the European Union. I and millions of others feel a sense of loss and great regret, but it is what it is and in time maybe the freedoms to travel again and live wherever will be restored.

Mists in Loubressac
Mists in Loubressac

 

Wishing you all a happy and safe Christmas and 2021.