MB Photography | Projects | Ephemeral Pools

Captured over a period of 3 years in a small patch of forestry near my home, Ephemeral Pools is an exploration of transient views in the landscape.

Most people’s perception of the landscape is one of permanence; views which change little over time, reinforced by the fact that so many of them are returned to and photographed again and again. At first glance the landscape around us is fairly static, but the more you look the more changes you notice. It is this continual change that I am drawn to - whether man made or natural.

There are many long- and medium-term effects on the landscape; such as natural growth, death and decay; man-made development and intervention; changes in the seasons; and daily (or even more frequent) changes in the weather. However, my view of the landscape in this series is changing on a much faster time scale, affected not only by the changing seasons and weather, but also by the levels and often fast movement of the water in the pools which are the subject of these images. Often the views are very transient, both due to the nature of the subject matter and also how I have used it to view the forest within which these images are made. Occasionally the views are so fleeting that they are only present in a single frame and I may not have even registered them fully at the time of capture.

Over the life of the project, as I spent more time in the forest and became more familiar with my surroundings, the nature of my photographic approach changed.  I moved away from the literal and the images evolved to become more abstract.

It is the unpredictability, fleeting existence and potential for abstraction that has attracted me to this place. Capturing moments in the forest that only exist for a very short period of time, and cannot be reproduced, is perhaps my reaction to a genre of photography in which many strive to reproduce views that have already been recorded by other photographers hundreds of times. 

The images in this series are both physical and metaphorical reflections: all are captured in these ephemeral pools of water reflecting the surrounding forest flora, but they also reflect my own ideas, thoughts and feelings at the time they were made. They are perhaps much less about the subject being photographed and more about my own experiences and emotions. 

In addition to the still images in this series I have also produced a number of video works, with original music composed by Zillah Myers.