New work – Battle of Maldon

Battle of Maldon

Evaluation and reflection –

I’m not sure why but this photograph reminds me of a photograph by Alec Soth – The Farm, Angola State Prison, Louisiana 2002. I think it’s the rule of thirds thing and the amount of open sky that is visible. In Soth’s image a dirt track leads the eye towards a modern day tragedy. In my image a land bridge leading towards a tiny island recalls a historical event that happened over a thousand years ago. There is something magical about the clouds. I wanted them to be pronounced in my photograph as they look timeless and beautiful. They would have appeared the same in 991 AD.

My photograph made near Maldon in Essex was hard-won. The island was extremely difficult to find. A lack of mobile Internet meant that I had to phone my wife to give me directons by looking at Google earth on the computer at home. Also I wasn’t sure of the exact time of the tides. Luckily I waited around long enough that the tide eventually went out revealing the land bridge which the Vikings used to cross the sea before attacking Maldon. It is interesting to note that this location has hardly changed since those times. A few electricity poles visible in the distance reveal to the viewer that we are looking at a contemporary scene. It was late in the afternoon and I was hoping that the dramatic clouds would add mood to my image. After spending many hours at the location and making lots of photographs from various viewpoints I was happy that I had captured what I wanted. Unfortunately the gate where I had entered had been locked and I was stuck there possibly all night.


Maldon24x20Sat5Sharp100NEWNewAn unknown number of men were killed or injured during the Battle of Maldon on 10th August 991 (Britons, Saxons and Vikings).


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