I usually strive to create landscape and travel images that convey a sense of place or story. It’s the reason why I have little desire to have snapshots of myself at travel destinations; the photos I come back with serve as adequate memoirs of my time spent at these places. While these are qualities important to the success of a travel photograph overall and for publication, they can work against you in other ways, such as print sales. I recall reading about a landscape photographer’s complain of poor print sales at an exhibition in Australia. From what I could see, not having attended the gallery myself, I thought the work was a cut above what one would normally see in such a setting. Yet it was no surprise to me that sales were poor. On display was a selection of images from all over the world. I struggled to see how too many people who have never stepped foot in Iceland or Patagonia would be able to connect on a deep enough level to shell out the dollars. On the other hand certain locations such as Paris, London, New York and Venice are always popular among buyers but the downside to this market is fierce competition.
Consequently I’ve had a few ideas about shooting some landscapes without any sense of place. What I had in mind was a scene that could be anywhere in the world, which anybody could identify with. An opportunity presented itself recently, the ideal sky over the right location. Imagine a person standing alone on a nameless beach at dawn. Time has become inconsequential, its passage depicted by blurred elements over a three minute exposure.
Canon 5DMkIII, 24-105mm 4L, polarizing filter, ISO 50, f20, 3 minutes