Hand-tinted photographs have always held a certain appeal. Of course when they were first done, it was because we had no colour photography. But we do now, indeed we have digital, which opens up many new ways of working. I use my iPhone for most of my photography these days and occasionally play about with image editing software and apps on my iPad. I bought a Pencil years ago, to use with Paper (don’t you just love how close they want to be to materiality, the real thing?)
As many readers know, I’ve been drawing large, monochrome riverscapes for a couple of years. Only once did I do one in colour, but rejected it and returned to good old black and white. Psychologically, this may be related to life (and death) events. I’m walking in circles, finding my feet again.
This year I have done several 360 degree images and videos, which I have edited into muted colours. The natural colours were pretty mute to begin with, but I also found myself celebrating bright blue skies and green leaves. Colour started to seep back into my life.
There’s a pattern forming here. When I write I often write in prose, then reduce it to more poetic form (I stop short from calling it poetry). Then reconstruct, having pared back.
Also this year I have been enjoying the changes of light on May Hill, from a viewpoint that means I can snap it willy-nilly and relish the wonderful shifts of forms and hues. It reminds me of when I moved into my Newnham home and took photos from the bedroom window almost EVERY morning, of the Severn, for the first couple of years. I still do so, occasionally.
So moving away from the river (it’s scary, but I don’t go far!) I’ve become intrigued by the view from Pleasant Stile. I drive down some mornings quite early so I jump out and take pics of the Severn from there too.
So, after all this preamble, I’ve been playing at digital-darkrooms. I take colour photos, I greyscale them, then I put back a little colour. And I think they are growing on me.
I welcome your thoughts on them, and the process.
Click images to see them larger
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