Welcome to the first post in our series of readers showcases. We want to help you share your art and creativity on Artonomy and encourage you to submit work for inclusion.
This week our first artist is photographer Andy Hemingway from Yorkshire England. Over to Andy to talk about his amazing work.
I have held a lifelong love of the sometimes bleak but always beautiful hills and moors of the Pennines. My photography attempts to capture the changing moods and often dramatic atmosphere of the hills that I call home.
I was born and raised in Huddersfield and my passion for the landscape of Yorkshire started at an early age. My father would often take me on walks from when I was quite little, in the hills around the area where I grew up. Some of my earliest memories are of drystone walls, old water troughs and the local focal point which can be seen from almost anywhere in Huddersfield, Castle Hill.
I studied for a BTEC in Art and Design at Huddersfield Technical College, before graduating from Norwich School of Art in 1991 with a BA(Hons) Degree in Fine Art Printmaking. My work has always been about the landscape. Not just how nature has shaped it’s contours but how human beings have lived and interacted with the land. From traces of prehistoric habitation, to the scattered gateposts and millstones, it is easy to forget that many landscapes were until quite recently working landscapes. The people who lived on the land had to somehow eke out a living and they left their works, stories and names behind for us to find if we care to look.
Often returning time and time again throughout the seasons, I consider it important to know the locations where I shoot intimately. I research the history and folklore of the areas that I photograph and by visiting locations often, begin to understand how the light at different times of year falls on the views that you want to capture. Sometimes you have to wait for months or even years for the perfect conditions to capture the image that you have envisioned. Landscape photography is about so much more than capturing the scene before you but attempting to capture something of the spirit of the place.
When processing my images, I am not so concerned with adhering to a rigid representation of how the scene appeared at the exact moment that the shutter released. Although I keep within the bounds of realism, I like my colours to zing and to retain shadows and contrast. I also like quite a high contrast in my monos to push out light and cloud detail. I use graduated neutral density filters and bracket two or three exposures. I then often blend exposures together in photoshop and use layer overlays to add contrast and tone to the image. I do not use HDR.
Andy’s work can be seen on display at his next exhibition at Castleton Visitor’s Centre in Hope Valley, from 2nd to 30th July, with Chris Charlesworth.
If you would like to see your work showcased on Artonomy please click here for more information.