I’m excited about 2016. Without setting out the full list of what is in prospect, let me highlight three important things that will feature in my programme this year. I hope that all will result in more images that count in the conservation of our streams, rivers, lakes and oceans.
Foremost is a photography commission. A portfolio of images above and below water for Fauna & Flora International; a big conservation organisation that has a Marine Protected Area project in Cambodia in need of high quality imagery. I will be there in February and March to start the work. The Blue Marine Foundation recommended me for the job after my voluntary work to help create a marine protected area for Ascension Island, which has just been announced by the UK government. Incidentally, I met Clare Brook, BLUE’s CEO and Charles Clover (Chairman and Trustee) in December. You should watch this conservation charity in 2016; its people are achieving much and quickly.
I’m delighted to take a turn as Chairman of the British Society of Underwater photographers for 2016, following the footsteps of irrepressible Joss Woolf. I’m fond of this organisation and want to help it sustain and develop what first attracted me to it as an aspiring underwater photographer. It’s people were generous with their knowledge and profoundly helpful to me. I would like to give something back by making the Society ever-more accessible to those who might benefit most from it. I’ll be starting a dialogue about this with its members very soon.
The third thing I’m itching to resume is my freshwater river project (see previous blogs too). This grew and grew in 2015. I was interested principally in trout and grayling for 2015. At an end-of-season charity presentation to the good folk of Stockbridge in Hampshire, who had helped me with the project, I made some interesting new connections who helped to fire my imagination ever further. So I shall be developing the technical, conceptual and artistic sides of this fascinating project. I feel that this project is getting somewhere and that I’m on the cusp of some great work. Maybe my best yet…
There’s always more to tell, of course; trips to new locations, some teaching through the traditional Red Sea workshops, my first formal exhibition of printed work and a speaker programme that gets broader and ever more interesting. To chat about later, I think.
For now, let me wish you great success in your 2016 endeavours. And a very happy New Year to all of you, dear friends.