Photography by Steve Marshall
I've had a camera since my late teens, and in those years that meant a 35mm film SLR of one make or another. I always aspired to take something a bit more than snapshots, without really knowing in a systematic way what I was doing, and I would never have called myself a "photographer" in those early years.
In 2001 we went on an art/photography tour through the Greek islands, then went on to visit Delphi, Istanbul, Paris and England. The tour leader for the Greece part of the tour was master photographer Nick Melidonis, winner of multiple AIPP awards, and eminent photographic educator in Australia. He has been running these tours to various parts of the world for decades. Apart from being a great holiday, the trip really fired up my interest in photography, and I learned a great deal. It was the start of a continuing process which I believe has raised the standard of my image-making significantly.
After that trip I joined the Workshop Camera Club, which has also been a great learning experience. Entering competitions is an excellent way to improve almost anything, and photography is no exception. I have enjoyed modest success in the club competitions, and even picked up a few awards in exhibitions and competitions outside of the club.
These days I shoot with an outfit based on the micro-four-thirds system - an Olympus body and a small collection of Olympus and Panasonic lenses. I photograph all sorts of things, but one one thing I particularly enjoy is finding what might be called "found abstracts". What I mean is images that are abstract or semi-abstract, but which are straight takes of something around us. It might be a flower, a building or part of a building, or a line across a landscape. Most often such images will have a small number of strong design elements, either of line, pattern or colour.
Here are some examples: Urban Geometry contains takes of buildings, most of them very close to where we live. They may concentrate on line, repetition, colour or pattern. Nature as Artist is a collection of images from all sorts of natural environments. A lot of them are rocks or beach sand.