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Photographers new take on the Lake District
TWO Grasmere photographers inspired by Ruskin’s theories on nature have created a stunning new book of photographs of the Lake District.
Using an enormous Victorian style camera weighing 35 pounds, Angela and David Unsworth have spent the past five years scouring the Lakes looking for alternative images of the region’s most familiar scenes.
Landscape for the Imagination is the first in a series of three photo-books which caputure beautiful views of the Coniston fells, Scafell Pike and the Langdales in vivid light, rarely caught on camera before.
“We’ve gone back to basics in the creation of the book. We’re using the first principles of photography not used since the Abraham Brothers set about photographing the Lakes in the earlier part of the 20th century.
"We don’t do anything to our photos once they’ve been taken, there’s no post-production, no digital touch-ups - what we saw through the lens is what you see in the book,” said Mr Unsworth, a fine artist who runs the Greenburn Publishing company.
The pair said Ruskin’s ‘true to life’ principle, in which the landscape should be captured as accurately as possible, has been a huge influence on their work.
Mrs Unsworth - who works for Adventure Peaks in Ambleside - said: “We look for the beauty in nature and try to capture it perfectly. We take our time, travelling through the landscape, trying to really notice what’s there.”
Capturing the images has been a real labour of love for the couple who spent many weekends camping overnight on exposed fells just to capture a single shot.
“We’re experienced on the hills but it was physically exhausting carrying such a heavy piece of equipment about. I remember we spent ten hours in the freezing cold waiting for exactly the right light on Scafell Pike...but putting so much effort in to get the shot makes the end result more rewarding,” she said.
Like old Victorian studio cameras, the Unsworth’s camera uses 10 by 8 inch plates, bellows, a dark hood and light meter.
“We definitely caused a scene out on the hills luggging this huge camera about when most people just have tiny digital ones,” said Mr Unsworth, “but we wanted to prove we could use the traditional techniques for fine art photography.”
The book is the first of three and available from Waterstones in Kendal and Lancaster and online at www.greenburnpublishing.co.uk.