Despite having spent over a decade exploring the Caledonian Forests of the Rothiemurchus estate, there are some areas of these woods where I have very rarely set foot. The higher reaches of the forest, where it fades and blends into the mountainsides of the northern Cairngorms, is an area of huge photographic and emotional potentialContinue reading “Walking at the Forest’s Edge”
I’ve been trying to get my head in gear to write a new post for weeks now. This is the 5th draft I’ve started in ten minutes, but this is the one that’s going to stick. When I sat down and started writing I thought I’d go with the prevalent mood that I see online today – the mood of fury and disaster. I even drafted something apologising for my tendency to always seek a positive note, to give myself permission to wallow in the collective misery.
A few days ago the first snows of winter arrived on the mountains. There was a hard edged clarity of light in the forest that I only know from winter – white edges and black shadows running along every branch. The remains of autumn colours clung to the tips of wind stripped birch trees, likeContinue reading “Today Was a Gift”
“When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe.”“The clearest way into the universe is through a forest wilderness.” John Muir A young deer was looking at me. I held the gaze of its dark and shiny eyes, its long eyelashes and dark snout. IContinue reading “Deer Eyes”
As soon as the man on the phone stopped shouting at me and hung up, I made up my mind about going away. A few minutes later I had a self catering cottage booked in the village of Kilchoan on the Ardnamurchan Peninsula. I reasoned that besides being a place I’d wanted to spend timeContinue reading “The Oaks of Sunart”
It occurred to me the other day, while I was walking up a hill through long grass beneath shady birch trees, that the most important and enduring relationship we have in our lives is the one we have with the land we live on. It then occurred to me that this should always have beenContinue reading “Land the Person”
On a cloudy October morning in 2008, I quietly opened the door of Ling Hut, where we had arrived in darkness the night before, stepped out into the damp air and looked on the mountains of Torridon for the first time in my life. Since I was such a cartophile I was already familiar withContinue reading “Glen Torridon and the Awe of Time”
One of the great joys that photography can bring you is the ability to notice things that other people can’t see. I mean this fairly literally – until you learn to draw your attention to a particular thing; until you’ve learned to recognise it, you really can’t see it at all. Seeing takes place inContinue reading “Looking Closely at Things”