The last 25 years of photographing buildings and landscapes has taught me that being in the right place at the right time helps define the quality of a photograph.
My camper van gets me into places at times that I wouldn’t normally be able to access. I can now stay over on sites to monitor the local conditions and light levels throughout a full 24 hours.
I’m cut free of the bonds of ‘out of town’ accommodation and site access logistics.
Travelling in the van has been a revelation for me – it feels like a constant pilgrimage, and my photography has been impacted by the diversity of time and place.
Follow me on my journey...
Subscribe for free.
Spirit of Place * History * Material Culture * Heritage * Continuity * Photography * Travel * Architecture * Vanlife * Ways of Seeing * Wellbeing * The Historic Environment * Churches * Art * Building Conservation * Community * Place Making * Alternative Destinations * Hidden Gems * Road Trips * Place Writing *
The road less travelled...
My Van: VW Transporter T6.1
My Van is a VW Transporter 6.1. It was converted by a specialist company. At my request they made modifications to the van for secure storage of my equipment.
The van sleeps two, has a loo, a two hob burner, a 65 litre fridge and a thermostatic heater. It has an electrical hook up and wind-out awning. It has an inverter that charges the leisure battery during driving – so that I can keep “juiced-up” with electricity whilst stationary.
During the day I have a ‘lounge’ set up with access to a portable desk for post-production. With just a couple of clicks the seats fold down into a comfy bed.
Of course, having a camper has increased my roadside responsibilities – at the end of the evening, as well as making sure the headlights are switched off, I also check the fairy-lights.
Follow me on my journey...
Subscribe for free.
Camper van photography studio
“I work all year round in the van and I’ve slept in conditions nearing -10 degrees celsius.”
The camper van changeover.
Every morning, before I set off for a photo shoot I have to get the van ready - it takes around 30 minutes to get it into ship shape. I have to remember to switch the gas off, close the top roof light, and make sure the exterior hook-up is unplugged.
Van Culture - Food and Leisure
Good coffee is key. There’s nothing like hooking up after a long day’s driving and firing up the hob to heat a coffee pot full of freshly ground coffee. I carry the beans in a sealed tin and grind them down with a compact grinder stored at the back of the van.
Outdoor Pursuits. I work all year round in the van and I’ve slept in conditions nearing -10 degrees celsius. As soon as the spring arrives, I create an outdoor space by winding down the awning, putting out the table, breaking out the fairy-lights, and maybe – if the weather’s good enough – toasting a few marshmallows.
All Spiced Up. I carry all the essential spices in magnetic tins. They fit perfectly at the side of the rear window next to the hob. I make sure I’ve got spices to make a good curry or a mediterranean pasta. I also make sure I carry lots of eggs to make a quick omelette on the go (especially during a twilight shot), or – if I’ve got more time – a frittata.
Cheesy Egg Bread for breakfast
Cheesy egg bread is the perfect breakfast for a hard days work. Eggs whipped in milk, cheese sandwiches quartered and dipped into the eggs and then fried in a spot of butter.
Van Life Details
St. Mary’s Llanfair Kilgeddin, Wales
Whilst working on photo commissions, I’m lucky enough to get permission to access private land – so I get to stay in some unique locations. St. Mary’s lies in the gorgeous countryside of Monmouthshire and has a remarkably atmospheric interior. I worked from sunset until sunrise capturing the church in every nuance of light.
“Whilst working on photo commissions, I’m lucky enough to get permission to access private land – so I get to stay in some unique locations.”
Stowe House, Buckinghamshire
I’ve been recording the conservation of this architectural masterpiece for almost seven years. Recently, I’ve been time-lapsing, filming and photographing the conservation of the Dining Room and Temple Room at Stowe – but, perhaps, my favourite room of all – is the Marble Saloon.
“I’ve been recording the conservation of this architectural masterpiece for almost nine years.”
360 VR Tour of Woody
Why Subscribe?Here's the rub...
More van life stories and links
It takes a day a week to produce this digest. With your support, I’m able to keep this digest free and public facing. 📸🏛🚐
Support this digest and get access to a world of immersive content.
Click the box below to check out the membership options:
You can gift a membership to somebody else. They will receive an email with a message from you, and instructions on how to activate it. Gift Memberships can last indefinitely or can be limited to 12 months.
I have a limited number of free memberships available for students studying heritage, tourism, architecture, photography, building conservation, history of art, archaeology. Also students studying the built environment and its impact on mental health and wellbeing. If you'd like to apply, drop me a line with your details.