Evolution and Revolution: a life in landscape photography Joe Cornish Hon FRPS

08 April 2019

SIG: Digital Imaging South East

We listened, we marvelled, we appreciated, and we envied  the images 'Made' by Joe Cornish Hon FRPS, that he displayed  at the event at SEDIG on Sunday.  His articulate lecture, conducted over several hours, was revealing and  inspirational, he took the audience on many journeys through the day, initially, the journey of where he has found inspiration, from the various forms of art that he has enjoyed seeing, watching and listening to over the years. Remembered paintings from his youth that have remained in his memory and that he feels, in an unintentional way, have and still influence him today in the images he creates. We journeyed to the Polar regions and shivered with him in Zodiacs  and  he shared his passage through the sea ice and magnificent icebergs and plentiful wildlife, we were in awe, as he recorded panoramas that many of us will never experience in reality.  He shared the difficulties, when not being able to use his beloved tripod on board a moving ship or the fast Zodiac, but his experience is such that he was able to adapt seamlessly and use differing techniques and work with the vagaries of weather to show us beautiful simple and atmospheric captures. 

It was interesting to hear of another 'Journey' from Film to Digital and with his changes of format, he freely admitted that he found it a struggle to leave his beloved film behind and that it took him a while but that he eventually regained his creativity and is now able to capture so much detail  in the dark areas of an image that would have rendered black in transparencies. His artistry has no bounds now and he revels in this freedom to create. And something you might find difficult to comprehend, Joe Cornish  uses his Iphone7 to make images and even prints from these files!  You have heard the expression 'the Best camera is the one you have with you' and he fully endorses this, using his phone as a notebook and 'Ideas gatherer" a Composition aid and just for fun to capture the moment and even family snaps!

He readily admitted his struggle with balancing environmental issues with earning his living from photography and that travel to the wild places and wildernesses is unavoidable, and with its inevitable carbon footprint. 

This article in On Landscape by Joe outlines his dilemmas.

This excerpt taken from Joe's website, encapsulates, I think the message he conveyed throughout his considered commentary.

"My heart feels there must be an way, where we cherish, respect, revere and protect all that is wild, all that is left. It may not be a matter of economics but it most certainly is a matter of soul. To preserve remaining wilderness, and to respect the rights of wild creatures for whom it is home is also to preserve our sense of what it means to be fully human, for now, and for all future generations.

We had no difficulty filling our theatre, with a capacity audience, and I believe all who witnessed the event will have gone away, with so much to consider, images to recall and remember and admire Joe's creativity and artistry and let it inspire us all,  and then I hope that will translate into your own photography.

Joe  says, "he was honoured to present in such distinguished company, and I hope the tone and approach worked okay for such an experienced group of photographers".

But the honour was ours, to host this prestigious event and to have an appreciative audience enjoy such a great day's presentation by Joe Cornish 'One of the Greats of our Photography World"

At the end of the day, Joe agreed to present an award recently won by our SEDIG member Sue Dixon for her  image 'Flamingo and Feathers' This image won her The 'Chairman's Cup' for the DI Group's annual Print Exhibition and a Gold Medal.  Jaine Ball was also congratulated for her success being awarded the Edddy Lane Ribbon, in the same competition entitled 'The Hairdresser'

Eilleen Wilkinson was our third SEDIG  recipient of an award, the Irene Froy Ribbon

Here is a link to the report