Becoming Nature by Lou Luddington
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We are actively seeking a small number of nature lovers from a broad spectrum of the Pembrokeshire community to participate in Becoming Nature – a SPAN Arts Love Stories to Nature arts commission by local photographer and writer Lou Luddington.
Becoming Nature explores the power and meaning of our connection to the natural world, using photography, poetry and prose, to profile nine local Pembrokeshire nature lovers in a cherished place in nature. From surfers, swimmers and freedivers to naturalists, artists and gardeners, we are looking to include participants from a wide range of environments and pursuits. The aim is to capture how being in these places opens our hearts and provides a deep sense of well being that is vital to our health- nine Love Stories to Nature to share with the world.
Participants will be photographed and interviewed by Lou in a favourite local natural environment, a cherished place that provides solace, peace or joy. The location of your favourite place need not be disclosed in the final sharing.
Participation is voluntary for one half day during October or November. You will need transport to your chosen location but travel expenses can be covered by signing up to SPAN arts volunteer scheme.
As a gift you will receive a 8 x 12 inch fine art print of your favourite image from the session or from Lou’s photo archives.
In your application please provide the following:
Favourite environment, activity and location
Availability- weekdays or weekends or both during October & November.
Permission to take, use, re-use, publish, and republish photographic portraits or pictures of you. If selected you will be asked to sign a model release form to this effect.
Our aim in the selection process is to include as diverse a range of participants as possible for a small number of spaces.
Send your application to firstname.lastname@example.org
Deadline Friday 13th October
Lou Luddington is a nature photographer and writer and her work is particularly inspired by the ocean and coastal environment. Through powerful images and words she aims to speak up for the natural world. With a PhD in marine biology Lou’s formal training is as an observer and scientist; knowing the life stories of the species and environments that she is immersed in helps her create visually compelling art works and write with a deep sense of connection and awe.
Lou’s writing and images have featured in a wide range of national magazines and online publications, including Oceanographic, Finisterre’s The Broadcast, Yachting Monthly and the Do lectures blog. She published her first book in 2019, Wondrous British Marine Life: a handbook for coastal explorers and held her first photographic exhibition, The Sea From Within, at the Bug Farm in St David’s, which showcased the incredible marine life of Pembrokeshire waters. This was a launch pad for making her images available as fine art prints. Her image Nature’s sculptures of marine invertebrate life growing on a rocky shore near Solva was highly commended in the British Wildlife Photography Awards in 2019.
You can follow Lou on Instagram here
My idea for Love Stories to Nature is based around my belief that a collective shift towards ecological mindfulness is needed to protect and recover our natural environment and embrace the climate emergency. Our health and happiness is inextricably linked to the natural world and I aim to explore the power and meaning of this connection in Becoming Nature.
Using photography, poetry and prose, Becoming Nature profiles nine local Pembrokeshire nature lovers (for example, surfer, outdoor swimmer, naturalist, artist, gardener, freediver) in a cherished place in nature. I aim to capture how being in these places opens their hearts, provides nature therapy and a deep sense of belonging and well being. For each person, I will photograph a portrait, a wildlife species, plant or habitat and the general location to create a sense of place. By interviewing participants during the session I aim to capture the essence of their feelings and what their time in nature means to them in words. From this I will craft a Haiku poem, a short, embodied verse, as a distillation of an aspect of our session.
The result will be a Love Story to Nature from each person, made up of a triptych of images plus accompanying poems and heart-centred captions. These will be curated into a thoughtful, visually stunning talk that I will share at a launch event in January 2024. In addition, still images, audio clips and natural sound recordings from each photo session will be crafted into a video that can be streamed at various galleries, public spaces and event venues.