Solitude or Isolation? 2020 proved to be the year everything changed.
Firstly, the Covid-19 pandemic swept across the world causing the economy to grind to a halt. Mass infections and a horrific death toll meant that our personal liberties were curtailed in an attempt to slow the spread of the disease.
As a result of the lockdown, the creative industries came to a total standstill. As winter arrived, a second wave of the virus has swept the UK, resulting in an almost total lockdown. At the present time, photography work is non-existent. However, every setback presents an opportunity. Suddenly I find myself with the time to work on my personal projects.
One effect of the lockdown restrictions has been an awareness of the need to maintain social distancing. As a consequence, the number of people seeking some form of solitude has increased.
Isolation or Solitude?
When the first UK lockdown ended I packed my wife and dogs into our camper van and headed off for a road trip. My intention was to seek our own form of solitude, whilst photographing others who were doing a similar thing. Of course, we also intended to avoid close contact with people where possible.
Our road trip took us to West Dorset, The Forest of Dean, and eventually to Mid-Wales. We traveled here, there, and everywhere, never planning more than a day ahead. Where possible we were wild camping, only using organised sites when we needed to empty the toilet, take on water, and take a shower.
When 2021 arrived we sold our house in Dorset and relocated to Scotland. However, Covid ensured that we didn’t have a home to move to. This resulted in us taking to the road in our camper van once again. This time we focused on travelling in Scotland, mostly in Argyll. This enabled us to find our new home
These images above are the result of our trips. I will continue working on this project for the foreseeable future. The Solitude project was inspired by the work of my good friend, and fellow photographer Mark Leary.