I have to admit that yesterday was a rather special day. I received formal confirmation from The Royal Photographic Society that I had been awarded an Associate Distinction in the Conceptual and Contemporary category for my panel of fifteen images and statement of intent. I had previously been awarded a Licentiate Distinction back in 2012.
My submission was recommended for the distinction by a panel of judges on the 19th April when I took my images to the Headquarters of the RPS in Bath for the assessment. It then takes up to 10 days for this recommendation to be ratified by the Distinctions Advisory Board before the actual certificate is awarded.
I am of course absolutely delighted to have achieved this distinction by The RPS, which was formed in 1853 and is recognized as one of the leading Photographic Societies in the world.
I have selected a few of the images in the panel for this entry but if you would like to see all the pictures then I have created a new gallery – simply click here.
As well as the images themselves, a written statement of intent is required for the submission and I have included the text below:-
As a child growing up in London in the 1960’s, our family holidays were largely spent in Sussex or the West Country. My late parents would often take me to remote churches in the countryside for reasons I didn’t really understand.
Fifty years later and now living in West Sussex, I have come to appreciate the importance of these places of worship; partly for their historical interest and splendid rural locations, but mainly for the simple and beautiful charm of their interiors. Here I can share the same experience of peace and tranquility with the many generations that have gone before me.
Sadly many of these churches are under threat from a general decline in religious observation. Fortunately some in my selection have been saved and are being preserved by The Churches Conservation Trust. Mainly Saxon or Norman in origin, they are still consecrated but rarely used for regular worship. They are devoid of the adornments and distractions of a fully functioning parish church, apart perhaps from an old Bible or prayer book. I am rarely disturbed by other people when I visit to contemplate and to photograph, which only heightens the feelings these rural churches evoke.
My panel is made up from a number of churches in the West Sussex and Dorset countryside. Using only the natural light available, the monochrome images depict a sense of timelessness; quiet places where solitude and sanctuary can still be found amidst our increasingly busy lives.
And finally here is the hanging plan of all the images.
To view the individual images in my ARPS Panel do click here.