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BCA News: Spring 2019

Landscape Photographer and Conservationist

David Tatnall

One of Australia’s well-known and respected landscape photographers and conservationists, David Tatnall, presented his work and shared his thoughts on the role of imaging and conservation with The Institute of Photographic Technology, Inc. (IPT) at the March General Meeting. Since the 1970s, the combination of his two passions enabled him to influence and help preserve natural environments that would otherwise not be available for us to enjoy today.

Forest on Buffalo Plateau © David Tatnall

David explained, when he photographs an area of natural beauty, he researches the environment. He learns about the trees and the other flora and fauna in the area. This knowledge of the area informs his approach of documenting the specific location.

Armed with his photographs and extensive research, many of the areas he has documented over the years are now preserved due to his and others proactive lobbying to saving these fragile environments. Many of the areas David has photographed were scheduled for logging by forestry departments. His photographs of these forests, although beautiful images in their own right are much more than that. They are the face of campaigns educating people on why these unique areas of our fauna and flora should be saved for future generations. David’s photographs are also valuable historic documents since some of the areas he photographed have been destroyed by natural disasters.

Cape Woolamai © David Tatnall

His images are in major collections in Australia and the USA. His cameras of choice are large format and pinhole film cameras. He often hikes into remote areas carrying his camera and tent on his back. His photographs are considered and deliberate. He states that analog tends to make photographers take this approach. He noted his dislike of terms like ‘snap’ a picture.

Stony Creek Grampians © David Tatnall

David has been and artist in residence at many schools for more than 20 years and teaches analog photography to students and photographers of all ages.

A proponent of analog photography, David is the author of View Camera Australia, a website dedicated to the promotion and education of analog photography. He also established the Friends of Photography Group.

To read more about David, visit his website https://www.davidtatnall.com.

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