The Siege of Hertford
Evaluation and reflection –
Hertford Castle is an intriguing place. The original castle walls still exist almost intact. Within the outer walls a much newer ‘castle’ building exists. Because it is in the centre of Hertford it is completely surrounded by new and old houses and flats. This made it very difficult to visualise the site from a distance. I had to photograph from quite close which limited my options slightly. I recalled some of Simon Norfolk’s more abstract images from his Bleed project made after the Balkans War. I think his approach influenced the way I looked at Hertford Castle. Another possible influence for me was Richard Billingham’s Landscapes 2001-2003. In his book several of his photographs are dominated by almost abstact viewpoints of vegetation and foliage. Canopy, 2001 and Hunza Valley, 2001 are exellent examples of this.
Although I made an image that I liked it was not very clear that the subject was actually a castle. I wanted to make another more descriptive photograph that shows the audience what they are actually looking at. This led to the second more obvious image. The light that day was a bit flat but it was perfect to accentuate the details in the gardens that lined the inside walls. I liked how the walls were becoming engulfed with foliage which cleverly evokes the passing of time. It is a distinct reminder of the power of nature and whatever man does to the landscape one day it will revert back to its ‘natural’ state.