Creating photos of a place – Cromer

We’ve just come back from a week on the east coast of England. Cromer is a seaside town in North Norfolk’s Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Whilst we walked a good six miles of the coast either side of the town, we also spent a few days just mooching about the resort. I wanted to talk a little about how I document a place, what I am drawn to and what I create.

I think that it’s fair to say my general approach falls between documentation, commentary and occasional abstraction. In terms of technical choices all of these photos were created with my Fuji X-T4 and either a 35mm lens (50mm equivalent) or a 16 – 55mm (24 – 82mm equivalent) mid range zoom lens.

I’m drawn to colour, shape and form particularly. Sometimes, it’s about the interaction of people in those elements of visual design. Maybe there’s also some unusual or quirky element to what people are doing. In this British seaside environment, I freely admit that it’s almost impossible for me not to occasionally create photos that echo Martin Parr’s Last Resort. Particularly in terms of use of colour and sense of the peculiar or ridiculous.

There is also a desire to reflect the faded beauty of this English seaside town. I grew up in Paignton and Torquay, two of the busiest seaside resorts in the south-west of England, and when I visit similar UK resorts I feel a sense of nostalgia for the tacky and traditional elements of seafront life. Cromer is also noted for its crabs and colourful beach huts, so these distinct elements are also part of the narrative that needs representation.

I’d be delighted to hear about your reflections on these photos and even receive some of yours of UK seaside resorts. You can find my contact details at the bottom of the homepage.

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