Working as a photographer for over 40 years, Steve Parish is well known for his gorgeous snaps of nature. After spending the first 15 years photographing aquatic landscapes Steve moved on to photograph and document other inspirational landscapes of nature with a broad focus on trees within the ecosystem.
Explaining his attraction to nature, Steve responds that he has an "affinity with imagination" due to a nourishing childhood. As a child his imagination was cultivated through outside activities, a significant backyard tree that housed a treasured "fort" and a lack of television and radio programs to distract him.
Steve has a philosophical approach to his profession and sees himself as an environmental interpreter and celebrator of nature which helps him in his photography. Steve sees “vegetation as more a spiritual thing (and) artistic as well". He says he sees joy in "watching trees take shape and form”.
When asked for advice on taking photographs of nature, in particular trees, Steve suggests finding a tree which is somewhat isolated from others and walking around it to note where the grooves and shadows in the trunk are highlighted by the angle of the sun or other light source. Steve also suggests that to add to the magic of the photograph “look at mood, form and text (such as) beautiful storm clouds, etc.”
As Steve spends up to seven months a year on the road travelling around Australia looking for beautiful images to shoot, he has seen the impact of deforestation upon the Australian ecosystem. “ (As) an awake observer for all of those years, I have seen massive changes to ecosystems, and most disturbing is what is happening in rainforests (such as) Florentine forest, cleared in 2007”. Steve argues that the clearing of the Florentine forest in Tasmania in 2007 had little public media attention due to the ongoing election process that was occurring at the time.
Steve’s photography is aimed at helping showcase the beauty and importance of the natural environment: “What is terribly important is to connect people with nature so they actually care about it,” he says.
Images courtesy of Steve Parish. For more information about Steve and his work, please visit https://www.steveparish-natureconnect.com.au/