Mark Preston

I’d never describe myself as a ‘proper photographer ‘- I’m simply a person who enjoys the processes involved in taking photographs, some of which occasionally yield results which I find moderately pleasing to look at. They might also represent a personal memory of a place or situation enjoyed.

I’ve only recently started taking pictures, and only did so because I thought it would be an interesting challenge for someone who lacks any artistic ability or even an interest in art. I wanted to see what I could do with something I considered totally alien at the time.

I’m a technician – someone who learns the processes involved in photography and who seeks to apply them. But I’m not a gear-head – I prefer to work with the equipment I’ve become familiar with over time. Don’t ask me about the relative merits of the latest camera, tripod or lens – I’ll have no idea. Similarly, I have very little appreciation of who the photography ‘masters’ are, or their style of work. I’m definitely a technician!

I sometimes force myself to photograph the things I don’t find particularly inspiring – simply because I believe doing so helps me develop my competences and skills. You never know when that little bit of additional knowhow will prove invaluable.

I enjoy spending time in the wonderful landscape we have in the UK – but taking photos is only part of my reason for being there. I enjoy the exercise, the fresh air and sometimes the peace and solitude of being able to do my own thing without hindrance or interference. I hike and camp.

I also find people fascinating to photograph. I love portraiture and I love beauty. By beauty I don’t mean ‘pretty’, they’re two very different things to me. Beauty surrounds us and is within all of us – you just need to be able to recognise it.

The juxtaposition of people and landscapes seems a natural path to explore. Often the contrast of a vulnerable or delicate human form in a harsh, barren or derelict landscape. Or an outlandish and statuesque figure railed against the weather. Or the notion of nurture derived from the land – the enticing geometry of certain rocks or the exquisitely entwined roots of ancient trees. Lots of goodness to explore if you have the time and inclination.

Anyway, that’s me. If you’re reading this and you think you might want to buddy-up as a fellow photographer, or perhaps even as a like-minded model, drop me a line. I’m based in the beautiful Shropshire Hills, close to the Welsh border, Snowdonia and the Cambrian Mountains. But I also travel a fair bit. Thanks for reading 🙂