FORAGING ON SKYE
In August 2017 I found myself driving to a beautiful Western Isle on the coast of Scotland for a day visit. To this day, this location continues to be a popular tourist destination, and is well known for its dramatic cliffs, its infamous lookout bothies and its unpredictable weather. Over the last couple of years, I’ve attempted to return to Skye for a longer stay. Unfortunately, something has always happened to cancel the trip i.e an allergic reaction and then Storm Ali.
When I was approached by Scottish Sporting Journal to visit this place in a slightly different way, I jumped at the opportunity. This was a dream pitch for me, aligning with my exploration into Rural Life photojournalism perfectly. The brief was as follows:
To shoot and write the Skye foraging feature with Mitchell Partridge of Skye Ghillie, capturing the beauty of the island and this ethical, back-to-nature practice.
You can order the full first edition online here. Read More
I first visited Iceland in April 2016, and instantly fell in love with the desolate landscapes, dramatic volcanos, mountains, glaciers and waterfalls. I returned in February 2018 with a group of friends, and our trip was stumped by constant snowstorms and closed roads. Towards the end of our trip, we got stuck near Geysir, along with around 100 other vehicles. Luckily, we were saved by local volunteers of the search and rescue, and managed to take refuge in a nearby town hall with some other stranded people. We spoke with our rescuers and took some pictures with them before we all convoyed back towards Selfoss. We were only stranded for 10 hours, which isn’t really a long time, but we were all pretty anxious at the time, especially when our cars radiator stopped worked. Throughout the rest of 2018, I looked back fondly at the extreme experience, and decided it was time to dive into documenting the search and rescue team. Read More
My alarm blared, indicating 5am had finally come. It had been a long and restless night, waking up every half an hour and barely getting back to sleep. I struggled with my suitcase, urging it up the stairs and into my boot with tired muscles. I blasted the heaters and swept snow from my car, warming my hands on a cup of tea as I set off on the four hour drive. In the darkness of night, it was easy to see how ominous and surreal this landscape could be. Paling white clouds of steam or fog oozed up from the ground, as if a mass of spirits had ascended from beneath the earth. I didn’t see another vehicle for about an hour and enjoyed the solitude as I made my way across the south coast. Snowploughs started to emerge and I saw the heavy cloud covering the horizon. Before long, I was enveloped by the snow once again, and watched powder whirl up in my rearview mirror as I carved out some fresh tracks.
Nearing the coastal town of Vík, the wind gusts got up to 80mph, snowdrifts and blizzard mixing together and pummelling the side of my car. It was unrelenting for another hour and a half, and I sighed in relief as I got away from the storm. The sun had risen fully by now, the sky unbelievably different, bright and blue as I reached my destination. I ate some Skyr and started to layer up with my snow gear and before long, Ryan and the group had arrived. I was thrilled when I heard back from Hidden Iceland as I knew they were not only passionate about the landscape, but about preserving it too. They hold a number of small and private hire trips, showing off some of the most remarkable and breathtaking places around Iceland, whilst informing us about how quickly things are changing too. Ryan’s passion really shined through with the sheer wealth of knowledge he held, his energy and enthusiasm contagious. He’s recently written a piece about the effects of climate change on glaciers, you can read the full article here. Read More
It has felt like early summer these past few days with sunlight absorbing into my skin with a serene ease. It was last Thursday and I woke up to the birds singing, and something like life moved through the air. Cold and still and bright with a change of season. It was then that I realised signs of growth were all around me. Snowdrops bloomed and buds started to appear on branches, all of these subtle changes that were hard to believe I’d missed.
Plans to pick up my friends on the way over to the Lake District had been made, and I rushed to leave on time. Only a month had passed since my last visit with Robyn, but I already craved the intimacy of mountains around me. I can still remember visiting the Lakes for the first time with my dad, after he’d convinced me to go fell walking with him. We drove through Glenridding and Patterdale, weaving in-between the narrow roads lined by trees and lakeside cottages. We’d hike above Ullswater, sometimes taking a dog or two to enjoy the walk with us. I loved these day trips, and found myself wanting to go back for longer and explore more single track roads and hidden spots. I must have spent about three weeks there last year, visiting in spring, summer, autumn, and again in early January to see the snow hugging the peaks. It lay like a blanket, the mountains in hibernation for the coming spring. Read More