FOR OVER A DECADE I have been working on a website trying to communicate what I consider a earth-wide emergency of climate change. The website goes by the name careingfortheearth.com.
My experiences in photographing the landscape over several decades have profoundly affected my reactions to what I had learned about global warming. A deep impression of the beauty I experienced led to stunned feeling of incredulity that we could be putting such beauty in danger, not just by neglect, but my conscious decisions by fossil fuel compaanies and colluding governments to push the use of more and more fossil fuel despite knowing the risks to the earth. This practice continues to this day, February 15, 2019 and there is no sign it will stop. Plans are in place for further exploration and drilling in fragile and beautiful landscapes that had been considered protected.
However, there is more to my feelings about the earth and its beauty than climate change.
Since my early teens I have been a student of cosmology, in a sense the science of the heavens. The picture I hold in my my is the clearest I can create of how the earth came into existance, beginning with the so-called "big bang" (which I prefer to refer to as the Grand Singularity). The incomprehensible sequence of cosmic events over a period of some 13 billion years that led to the creation of the earth seemes like a dramaticly sensentionalized saga of science fiction.
But that was only the beginning. I have studied about human development and the nature of the human mind, and have spent untold hours contemplating how it could possibly be such an incredable marvel. It gives us sentience, consciousness and intelligence, and thus the ability to experience though eyes and ears all of life, but particularly the beauty and tragedy that make human life what it is.
The big bang was the smallest thing that can exist, trillions of times smaller than an atom, yet it contined an infinity of energy, enough to create trillions of stars of incomprehensible varitey, galaxies like our own Milky Way, and a profound beauty that we can only contemplate with amazement.
Climate change has already altered the planet permanently and is on track not just to alter it but concievably to destroy it.
I have found my photographic subjects simply by looking out of my car window or, occaasionally, folloing a well trodden path a 10 minute walk from my car.
All but a handful of my landscape photographs are on 4" x 5" sheets of transparency film, which by great good fortune now are archival and expected to last 1000 years or more. Previous tecnology gave lifetimes of less than 50 years unless frozen at very low temperatures.
In a sense therefore, my work, good, bad or indifferent is a record of scenes that could be impossible in the future.
It is beyond me to communicate the beauty and significance of life. The best testimony is the images I have made.