Rook Lane Blog

Richard Learoyd is an internationally renowned photographer who will be coming to Rook Lane on Saturday 1st of December as part of our Photographers Day where he will be giving a talk about his practice from 6pm.

Richard Learoyd was born in 1966 in Lancashire. He graduated from the Glasgow School of Art in 1990 with a degree in Fine Art Photography. Between 1994 and 1999 he taught photography at Bournemouth and Poole College of Art, and then worked as a commercial photographer before beginning the camera obscura work that he is best known for. He has exhibited all over the world, including London, New York and San Francisco, and his work is currently being displayed in the National Gallery, London.

In 2003 Richard started experimenting with the camera obscura process. He has built a giant camera, similar to a huge camera obscura. The camera is comprised of two rooms, in one is the subject of the image and the light source, and behind the lens in the other is a piece of direct positive photographic paper. The scene is exposed directly onto the paper, with no negative used. This means that every image produced is a unique work of art, with no editing or manipulation.

Each exposure takes around eight hours, with models coming prepared to sit for a full day under the hot lights. If the resulting image is not satisfactory Richard will destroy it there and then. The models Richard uses are casual acquaintances and he poses them in a way which gives the viewer and intimate look at their thoughts and emotions. The resulting effect is a beautiful and truly unique image which gives the impression that you are looking through a window rather than at a photograph. The subjects almost seem to be breathing.

See here for more information on Photographers Day, Saturday 1st December 11:30am – 9:30pm


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