For all the travelling I’ve done, it’s always good to come home. I am writing these words 50m away from the River Slaney, in the south east of Ireland, with a a copy of Crossabeg: The Parish and its People (Vol 2) waiting for me. And I’m honoured to be featured in the book. When my neighbour here, Alice Devine, one of the team who put the book together asked me to write something about my travels, I thought the best way was to show how my upbringing in Crossabeg provided the foundation for everything that followed – including my trips to the Arctic and the Antarctica. For those of you not able to get your hands on the book, here’s what I wrote:
Slough Creek Trail, on the way to backcountry camping, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. This photograph was taken on a hot, hot day at the end of July. It’s usually better to hike earlier in the day, but the relative flatness of the trail, plus some logistics we had to take care of meant a late start for our first attempt at backcountry camping. The trail heads through beautiful natural meadows, and passes distant fly fishermen focussed on persuading curious trout to come ashore.
Read More »Camping in Bear Country: Slough Creek Trail, Yellowstone
We almost bumped into Ms. Moose on the way back from Electric Peak – she, and her offspring, Junior, were foraging on the banks of Glen Creek. We came within a few metres of them before stopping still, and backing off a bit. The two moose took off out of the water, and onto the trail ahead of us. We gave them a few minutes to get ahead, then moved slowly along the path. After 50m or so, we spotted Ms. M at the other side of the narrow creek, alone. Junior was nowhere to be seen. Suddenly she took off, and made to head us off on the path. We retreated, and ended up the path, farther back then when we had first encountered. She followed us, quickly but not aggressively, with a sense of purpose and authority, and didn’t get too close. When we reached open country, she escorted us no further. After a short pause, she made a quick turn and galloped away down the path. After a few minutes, we followed, even more tentatively than before. Neither Ms. Moose or Junior were anywhere to be seen; the path then opened out into flat, sagebrush country, with willow bushes on the right. We kept a close watch, but we didn’t see the moose family again.
Morning light illuminates how we keep our food and backpacks away away from the rain and the bears – a horizontal pole, high above the ground, with backpacks and food strung high above the claws of any curious bear. Us humans, however, sleep in the tent, on the ground with cans of pepper spray for company. Beside the Gardner River, on the Sportsmans Lake Trail, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming.
Read More »Keeping Bears at Bay in Yellowstone
Black bear, on the Blacktail Plateau Drive in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA. We came across this black bear munching on Bearberry Honeysuckle (Lonicera involucrata – aka twinberry) early one morning. Although we sat there for several minutes watching the bear consume breakfast, we were completely ignored until it decided that it eaten all it could reach, and crossed the dirt road, giving us one straight glare before heading into the bushes in search of seconds.
Mellow the Black Marmot, near Surprise Lake, 3000m up in Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming. This rather large marmot certainly was a surprise. When we first spotted this black furry creature, stretched out on some rocks, I thought, what the hell, is this a baby black bear? A wolverine?
Read More »The Black Marmot of Grand Teton
I’m honoured to be judging this competition for Greenpeace Belgium: “are you a gifted photographer, or did you just eye for handsome images? Along with the photo magazine Shoot and the municipality of Bredene we organize the contest Ecopolis. Take part and win great prizes including a bicycle from Granville.”
Read More »Judging Greenpeace’s Ecopolis photo competition
One of my pictures – showing a lead through some sea ice, near 79 Glacier in north eastern Greenland, is currently featured in an exhibition at Dublin’s Copper House Gallery:
The Copper House Gallery presents Encore!, a winter exhibition featuring the best of contemporary Irish fine art, photography and illustration. We will be showing an eclectic range of originals and limited edition prints from our gallery and invited artists. A great gift for loved ones, a treasure for life.Read More »Arctic Encore! at the Copper House Gallery
I’ve just posted a blog about the Greenpeace Arctic 30 over on my new Cold Reality website: We Can’t Let 30 people Be Our conscience
Read More »We can’t let 30 people be our conscience
During the recent Arctic Nocturne here in Brussels, organised by Greenpeace Belgium, Neil Hamilton and I were interviewed by journalist Alexandre Mineev for Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta, about the Greenpeace Arctic 30 situation.
UPDATE: Pictures from the event now in the slideshow and gallery below.
On October 17th, for the last evening of my photo exhibition, The Arctic: Another World? we’re having a special event in solidarity with the 30 Greenpeace Arctic activists currently being held in detention in Russia, at Brussels’ beautiful Bibliothèque de Laeken, hosted by Greenpeace Belgium and the Ville de Bruxelles.
Read More »Arctic Nocturne: An evening in solidarity with the Greenpeace Arctic 30
The Arctic: Another World?, a solo exhibition of my polar photography, during October 20213 Bibliothèque de Laeken in Brussels, presented by Greenpeace Belgium and the Ville de Bruxelles. To coincide with the show, journalist Camille Goret Interviewed me for the French edition of Metro Bruxelles.
Last week, I had coffee with Belgian journalist, Camille Goret, at his office in central Brussels. So central is Camille’s office, it’s practically in the same building, the city’s Gare de Central. I was there to pontificate about my forthcoming photography exhibition, hosted by the Ville de Bruxelles and Greenpeace Belgium, but in the course of things, Camille mentioned that he’d seen on my photographs, the Sleeping Dragon, on the cover of a book.
Read More »William T Vollman, the Vikings, Greenland and Me
Update: To close the exhibition, we had Arctic Nocturne: An evening of solidarity for the Arctic 30
On Monday September 30, 2013, The Arctic: Another World?, a solo exhibition of my polar photography, will open at the Bibliothèque de Laeken in Brussels, presented by Greenpeace Belgium and the Ville de Bruxelles. Running until October 18, the exhibition is open to the public – so please come along if you’re in town. There’s a vernissage, as they say here – an official opening, at 11am on October 1st, and all are welcome.
Read More »The Arctic: Another World? opens to public in Brussels
The above image appeared in The Irish Independent‘s Weekend Magazine, on April 2013, as part of Behind the Lens, a series where the editors ask “Ireland’s best known photographers to send us a shot of their proudest work and explain in a few lines why it’s their favourite piece. ”
So, here’s what I wrote:
So, penguins live in the south, and polar bears in the north – never the twain will meet, despite the best efforts of toymakers and cartoons. But was there ever penguins in the Arctic? Dave investigates.
Read More »Why there are no penguins in the Arctic
On Tuesday April 23, 2013, Greenpeace Belgium will launch Arctic: Another World?, a solo exhibition of my polar photography, at the Belgian Senate building in Brussels. Aimed at policymakers, the exhibition runs until the 26th and is not open to the general public – but I’m currently working with Greenpeace and other partners to setup a big public exhibition in Brussels in the coming months – more news on this very soon!
I’m delighted to share these images with you – my picture of an iceberg, made in Nugatsiaq, West Greenland in 2009, has been featured on the front cover of the March 2013 issue of GEO France magazine (circulation 250,000). I made the image, of a high altitude cloud ‘erupting’ over a triple-arched iceberg, while sailing by on the Greenpeace icebreaker, Arctic Sunrise.
I’ve done a few interviews recently, all of which have had the unexpected outcome of telling me more about myself, my photography, and my reason for doing things than I had expected. The latest interview was by the insightful writer, photographer and web designer David Moore, who has been a friend and colleague for almost 16 years. We know each other from our days in Dublin. Now, he’s in New Mexico and I’m in Brussels, we had to catch up over Skype, instead of over Guinness in Ryans of Parkgate St.
David has devised a simple, and intriguing interview format: each photographer suggests two of their own images and two by other photographers, and David asks questions about the photographer’s relationship with each.