Sometimes we have to look beyond life. Blur our vision a little and then see what we can see.
This is where my childhood adventures started. This is where I used to play, in the dene, next to my childhood home. I feel lucky to have grown up here. Maybe this is where my love affair with nature started too. I still live close to the dene, I still visit it, and the fields that surround it. And I feel that I belong, in the peace and the solitude.
My mam doesn’t like her photograph taken. She would only sit in the chair with her back to me whilst I took a mother and daughter portrait. She asked to look at the photograph and then told me that I was very naughty. She loves me really.
The road to enlightenment is a very difficult one. Sometimes it can be a case of one step forward, and two steps back. But even though the road is often strewn with obstacles we must keep on, because one day the road will become easier to walk along.
When things go wrong I often dwell on the negatives. But I see it as a test. If I can get past the negatives then the spirit will grow stronger and next time the negatives won’t seem as bad.
This series of photographs is developing into something very special. Not only do I love the images and what they represent but going out into nature and taking them is allowing me to get closer to nature. And it is through nature that I believe my path takes me. Maybe its a two way street. I seek enlightenment so I go out into nature to take photographs and by doing so I discover something about myself which enables me to move forward on that path.
I experiment with a lot of different photography, sometimes some of what I do falls by the wayside. But I am always drawn to nature. Nature is my saviour.
I am drawn constantly to flowers. But even though their colours are so vibrant I still prefer to see them in black and white. Maybe that is how life is, black and white. I continue with my dedication to the loss of my beloved dog by dedicating these photographs to her and the happiness she brought to life. Some people may think it strange to love an animal so much and to mourn its loss so greatly. But animals can enrich someones life greatly. They learn us so much about emotions and how to be kind to others. And their dedication to their owners is immense.
The path to Enlightenment can sometimes be a very lonely one indeed.
Every week we went on picnics in the summertime. Kids around would come and say, “Are you going to the picnic?” “Yes.” And you either got a bottle of lemonade or water, whatever, and took that with you. And sandwiches, you know, and things like that. And go off through the, what we used to call the meadows, they call them fields now, and go to different places. Neddy’s well, there was a place called Neddy’s well. At Neddy’s well there was a natural spring. And the natural spring, my dad used to go there and you could get watercress. And then he used to go across the bridge and down into the field, across from our house, and pick mushrooms. But now from what I can gather its all built up with houses. Well along that what they called the cinder path that’s the way I used to go to school. Over the bridge, down the cinder path and up to the railway station. Over the railway bridge and the school was there on the right hand side. It was what was called a Church of England endowed school. That meant that the church paid for the school where the church never paid for the Catholic school, the Catholic people had to look after their own. And they used to go round their parishioners tocollect money off them to look after their church, the Catholics did. I mean we used to collect money but we didn’t collect it like they did, you know go around the houses. I used to deliver the church magazine at one time. In one of the magazines, but I don’t think I have one, its got my name in. It says about people who delivered the magazines and its got my name in.