Cappadocia has such a variety of strange and fascinating rock formations that I knew there was something there, only I wasn't sure how best to approach photographing it.
Being primarily a colour shooter for most of my photographic life, it was with surprise that these images should surface from an editing session as monochromes.
To me, they have been a catalyst. One that has illustrated to me that maybe I should explore the world of black & white more, but also, that some subjects suit monochrome more so than colour.
I think the white powdered faces of Geisha work extremely well in monochrome.
In this medium it's possible to emphasise certain features of the human face more so than others. Geisha's red painted lips and eyebrows stand out more when darkened by a blue filter.
I also find that photographs of people in profile can be very seductive.
I think this is because they are more about shape and composition than they are about the character of a person. More a case of observing rather than relating.
In the case of the profile photo shown here, I felt I was abstracting her form down to tones and lines, more so than capturing the essence of her spirit.
Sometimes an image is more interesting when some things are left unsaid, deliberately vague or half concealed.
Asia & Africa
I love making portraits. Many landscape photographers seem to avoid it at all costs, yet it can be such an exciting thing to work with people.
Spending time in one area for a week or so, going down the same streets, meeting the same faces often works wonders for me. I get acquainted and it helps bring walls down so I can make photographs.
But there are many images I've made over the past while which I couldn't plan. They just happened. I love that aspect of photography. Never fully knowing what might be aound the corner.
These images were shot in the Kathmandu valley of Nepal, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh in India, Angkor Wat in Cambodia and Lalibela of Ethiopia.
It's such a surreal place.
I feel I can say this with good authority. I think most photographers think that Iceland is the most amazing place to visit, and although it is, I feel the Bolivian altiplano surpasses it in terms of strangeness.
At an altitude between 3,600 metres and 5,400 metres, the air is thin and you're often left feeling that it's the closest you'll come to experiencing what it might be like on another planet.
This is a great place to think about vastness and space. It's also a great place to think about simple shapes and tones.
I've been here three times now and I feel i've only just scratched the surface.
Iceland really can be very monochromatic. The weather and atmospheric conditions can reduce the landscape down to just monochromatic tones.
It's something I really love about it and I've really enjoyed conveying this monochromatic feel in my colour work to date.
But what better Black & White subject could there be, than the black volcanic sand beaches of the south coast of Iceland?
The ice bergs here often conjure up thoughts and images of animals and inanimate objects. I've seen ice-seals and large conch shells to name a few.
The isle of Harris in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland has some of the most dramatic beaches in Scotland. They are often large, expansive areas of 'nothingness' which I really love.
It takes time to get to know a landscape. Like getting to know a person, there is an unravelling, or peeling back of layers. Repeated visits are the way we get to know a landscape well. We begin to see how the light interacts with the land but we are always experiencing new things that we never saw before.
Harris is a study of tones and form for me. Especially in winter when the light is often overcast and the clouds race across the landscape at the edge of the frequent storms.
I came here first in 2003. I went back again in 2012. Very little had changed in that time which I find extremely encouraging.
I've been traveling to many places for a long while now, often finding myself return to a location time and time again. Each time I visit I see changes in most places. An additional hotel here, a change in the visitor laws here and things are always on a slow decline to mass tourism.
Not so with Easter Island. It is a small island and the population of 3,000 are almost unnoticed while I am there. That's what's so beautiful about this place. It's remote, and the landscape is extremely beautiful in its own very special way.
Black volcanic rock is strewn throughout the landscape, and Moai statues litter the place. It's one small open air history museum and it has a very special vibe to it.
It is just a small plane hop over to Lofoten from the mainland of northern Norway. The plane is tiny with around 20 seats in it. As it rises abruptly into the sky, it's not uncommon for it to get tossed around in the winter storms. Just as quickly as it has ascended, it abruptly hits the ground on the other side.
On many of my flights to Lofoten, my air hostess has conducted the safety briefing in English - just for me. I am often the only non-native on the local flight, a flight that is more akin to a bus service than anything else.
She once said before we departed ‘ if we can’t land due to strong winds, we’ll turn round and come back’. I liked her plan very much.
Since my first trip to Lofoten, I’ve become friends with a handful of the locals in the town of Reine, and many others that I know well enough to say hello to. I'm the outsider, the one with the Scottish accent that comes once a year for about two to three weeks every February.
Mostly my friends there are expats: I have friends who are Dutch, Swedish, Australian and one of them - Sandro - is half Norwegian and half Italian. Lofoten seems to attract outsiders to come and live there.
Beauty is one thing, and beautiful Lofoten is. But it’s not for everyone. With long winters, and a small community, some of us (and I think I’m one of them) would go a little crazy with all that space and silence.
As my Dutch friend Lilian who lives there once said to me ‘if you have any personal issues, a place like this can amplify them. It’s not a place to run away to if you have emotional things you need to run away from’.