End frame: Mountains of Mourne, County Down by Paul Wakefield

by Ann de Bruyn

John Richardson

I am a keen amateur photographer based in Assynt in the north west Highlands of Scotland. I have a passion for the outdoors and when not working, I enjoy spending as much time as possible exploring the wild landscapes and seascapes of my local area and beyond. I work in both colour and monochrome and I have recently returned to shooting with a film camera.

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I am inspired by the work of many photographers, including Paul Wakefield, Bruce Percy, David Ward and Paul Sanders. I can enjoy and happily move between the images of all of these photographers despite their individual approaches and style being so different. For me, the common factor linking them all is the sense of calm and quietness that they bring into their photography in their own unique way.

From this group of photographers, there is one I have returned to many times over the years and that is Paul Wakefield. As a young photographer, it was Paul Wakefield’s early books, especially “Scotland The Place Of Visions” (with Jan Morris 1986) which inspired me. I would spend hours looking through this book over and over again, spellbound by the photographs. The images of Buachaille Etive Mor, the Cuillins and Loch Scavaig were among my favourites. As I explored further it was the intimate compositions of bracken growing out from the rocks on the River Findhorn, or lichen at the Storr on the Isle of Skye, which drew my attention. The level of detail, colour and texture in these images is amazing and all are made in subdued light. In fact, there is almost no direct sunlight in any of Paul’s photographs.

Photography for me lay dormant for many years due to family, work and sporting commitments. Then once again it was the work of Paul Wakefield which I rediscovered and his new book, “The Landscape” (2014). This is an incredible collection of beautiful photographs, any one of which I would happily have hanging on my wall. A little while after rediscovering Paul’s work I bought a new camera, digital this time, and felt inspired to explore the Scottish landscape once again.

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