The site had its origins as a means of sharing photos I had taken on mountaineering expeditions with other members of the team, once the expedition was over and we had dispersed to our homes and normal jobs.
Initially my photosharing took the form of attachments to emails, but with the speed of dial-up internet connection (as it was in those days) this very quickly proved impractical. To mail approximately 10 jpeg files of about 50 kBytes each, to each of 12 team members never really was practical in the days before Broadband ADSL!
Another incentive to put together a website arose from my work, when I needed to learn the basics of HTML to support the database management job that I was doing at the time. Thus the site was born!
Since those early days the site has grown to reflect my growing interest in wildlife and photomicrograpy, and is used to host areas dedicated to particular events in the calendar of the various microscopical clubs of which I am a member.
The site was never intended to be a market place for my photographs. I prefer to look on it as a resource for sharing knowledge, which can be a two-way process. I am always glad to receive help and advice to identify species depicted on the site or to correct any inaccuracies!
Should anyone come across a photograph on this site that they particularly like, I would generally be happy to have a print made of the photograph at high resolution, subject to the original slide or file being available. In exceptional cases, high resolution electronic files could be provided. To date I have provided prints to expedition members, and files to students to illustrate their theses, and to a zoo to accompany an education project. I have also received enquiries from publishers.
Because the site now includes areas dedicated to club activities, not all the photographs are my own work. Where they have been provided by other people, this is acknowledged. Similarly, these areas will include photos as much for their inherent interest (at least to those involved) as for their photgraphic merit.
Initially, much of the site was constructed using elementary "hand-crafted" HTML code. I later progressed to constructing the galleries themselves using the facilities for building "slides-shows" in Photoshop. The galleries from 2010 onwards were built using the web module in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom.
Because of the way the site has developed, the content and presentation change with time. The original galleries now appear crude, and the picture sizes there tend to be small. I hope gradually to re-work the earlier galleries (near the bottom of the home page) to bring their style and picture quality up to that of the later galleries.
All the photos in the main galleries up to and including Namibia (2006) were originated on colour slide film using a Canon EOS 600 or 1N, and scanned for incorporation on the site. Since 2008 I have been fully converted to digital photography, using Canon EOS 10D, 5D, 5D MkII, 5D MkIII,5D Mk IV cameras.
I studied engineering at university, and later gained a PhD in acoustics. For the last 30 years I have been working for a large multi-national company as a systems engineer. This aspect of my life is not represented on this site! I live in the South West of the United Kingdom.
My introduction to photography followed the classic route, starting with a "Box Brownie" and working my way up the camera quality scale via a folding medium format camera to an Exacta VX1000 35 mm film camera. I set up a home darkroom in the (rather dusty!) cellar of my parents' house, and have had a darkroom in each of the houses I have owned since moving from there. From the Exacta I graduated to a Canon AE1 and then T90, and when my car was broken into and my Canon camera gear stolen I took the opportunity to re-equip with the then quite new Canon EOS series of auto-focus film cameras. In the last few years I have added a Canon 10D, 5D, 5D MkII and 7D to my collection.
It is good to be able to combine photography with some of my other hobbies. This site concentrates on Mountaineering, Wildlife and Microscopy, although I also enjoy photographing people (portraits) and architecture.
I joined the Royal Photographic Society in late 1999, and a few months later attended a "new members day" at the Society where I had the opportunity of having some of my prints assessed against the criteria for one of their "distinctions". Since then I had always intended to submit some work for the Licenciateship (the "entry level" distinction) but had never quite got round to it. However, encouraged by a friend, I finally gathered some material together and after a rehearsal at a workshop organised by my local RPS region, I submitted a "Panel" for assessment in March 2007, which was successful. This Panel can be viewed on my site by following the link on the home page.