For almost as long as I can remember, I have been interested in photography.
Born in Keighley, my parents emigrated to New Zealand in 1964. They recorded our five week sea voyage, as it was then, on camera and all the photographs were placed into two photo albums. It was looking back at these albums that I got my first introduction to photography.
My first camera was a Kodak Pocket Instamatic, I was around 10 years old. As interest gained, I quickly out grew the small “110 cartridge film” format and so moved up to 35mm, a second hand Braun Paxette range finder camera with a 35mm lens. By my teens I was processing black and white film and printing my own images, in the darkroom my father made in the back of the garage, always experimenting trying to eek out as much detail as the negatives would allow. I moved on to a Pentax KM 35mm camera. Now there was the possibility to not only see through the lens but to change it also. I still have the Pentax, and a collection of lenses.
During secondary school, a teacher introduced me to the work of American landscape photographer Ansel Adams. The photograph, “Clearing Winter Storm” taken by Adams in the Yosemite Valley, California, adorned the cover. It, and other photos in the book, made a real and long lasting impact. His photographs still remain a source of inspiration, along with those taken by many other photographers.
Despite my passion for photography, it remained as a hobby. Aviation beckoned and returned me to the UK in 1982. I always carried my trusty Pentax to pictorially record my travels, in the same way my parents had done all those years earlier. When digital cameras first emerged I was of course interested, but it wasn’t until the first affordable digital SLR cameras became available that I finally made the jump from film.
Then, in late 2007, my aviation career suddenly and unexpectedly ended. Photography was my lifeline. I returned to college, first to complete an ‘A’ level, then on to further study towards a foundation degree in photography, both at Craven College in Skipton. Here I began to look at my photography with a more critical eye and began to explore new and different photographic subjects and approaches. I then went on to complete the introduction to teaching course (PTLLS) at Kendal College with a long term aim of teaching photography as a subject.
Since finishing college, I have photographed weddings and local events. I have assisted in covering motorsports, again concentrating more on the people rather than the machinery, and very occasionally a bit of studio work. All very varied and requiring different skills.
Presently, I am mainly concentrating on photography for me. I love the landscape, and the wilder the better.
I'm lucky to live on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, a beautiful landscape of hills and valleys and love nothing more than to be out with the camera and Polly (the dog) capturing images of the beautiful Yorkshire landscape.
In 2011, I was fortunate to visit the spectacular granite landscape of the Yosemite Valley and recreate my own version of Ansel Adams famous photograph which so inspired me those 35 years earlier. It now hangs on the wall of my study above the computer.
In late 2016 I joined the Royal Photographic Society. On the basis of my photographic qualifications and past work, I was awarded the distinction of Licentiate of the Royal Photographic Society in January 2017.
The Society's distinctions are internationally respected and sought after by professional and amateur photographers.
Over 1000 applications for, Licentiateship, Associateship, and Fellowship are received each year with about 600 being successful.
Founded in 1853, the Royal Photographic Society (RPS) is an educational charity with a Royal Charter, 'to promote the Art and Science of photography'. The Society take great care in maintaining standards and promoting excellence amongst photographers. My next goal is to obtain the Associateship, which I hope to complete before the end of 2017.
Please take time to look through the galleries on my site, I hope you enjoy the images.
If you would like an image they are available to buy, professionally printed. I you would like one of my photographs for your wall I'd like it to be presented at its best.
Just get in touch.
Tony Crossland 2017