The influence of mankind is undeniably strong and the potential devastation that comes with that influence is an aspect that people should be made aware of. We all should be made aware of the beauty we are losing, the rainforests that are disappearing and the wildlife populations that are decreasing by the day. We all need awareness of the steadily paced evaporation of certain lifelong traditions and indigenous cultures. Awareness is my message.
With my work as a photographer I visualise and illustrate the detrimental impact of human activity on the threatened ecosystems and the endangered wildlife within. I make stories as tangible as possible via aesthetic choices and written documentation in my work, making the imprint of humans more perceptible in the images than when just showing the image by itself.
The action of capturing these threatened species, various natural landscapes and damaging processes, provides me with a means to translate my desire for preservation of our planet. It allows me to frame the abundance of imageless information we absorb through the various channels (e.g. social media, magazines and newspapers) into actual images that serve as a manifesto for the subjects under threat. A manifesto best noticed before being swallowed by yet another wave of information.
With some of my work, I want my viewer to experience that the photo taken is just a moment in time, a moment that is changing, a moment that is fading. I capture this fleetingness of time by using analogue photography and by removing saturation. This creates a strong nostalgic feeling while also making the image more susceptible. In some way I want the viewer to be overcome by a feeling that says ‘this is how it used to be back in the days.
In my view, the message of awareness would come across best in case people experience the harmful human influence first-hand, like I have. Unfortunately, this is not a possibility. Combining a photo with my personal experience sends a stronger and a more tangible message as it offers a close to first-hand encounter. Inclusion of interviews with people conducted during my field research and my documented personal observations refers to the tension between human beings and their natural environments that I so badly want for the rest of the world to see.