DIG Thames Valley: Forgotten Heritage Photography with Matthew Emmett

13 September 2015

10:00 - 15:30

Wokingham, Berkshire
Woosehill Community Hall
Emmview Close
United Kingdom
RG41 3DA

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Group Member£10.00
RPS Member£14.00
Non RPS Member£14.00 

Demonstration of the planning, capture and processing of two (or more) images from the original files to the end result. Beginner techniques that people can hopefully learn something from. Practical stuff that most should be able to use. Followed by techniques that require an intermediate to advanced level of PhotoShop understanding.

Matt’s Biography: There is a thrill in exploring an environment that allows you to step into a previously unknown world and discover something first-hand, taking your time and noting the details as you go. Having a camera with me allows me to prolong that thrill long after the building is gone. It’s an often quoted cliche but there really is a strong sense of palpable history present in abandoned buildings, the items left behind like paperwork in a drawer or plaques or signs in an industrial plant, allow you a glimpse into the past. I consider experiencing these places to be a great privilege.
From the point of view of a photographer there is a total lack of distraction in the stillness of a derelict building; the sound and movement associated with people or workers has been removed, for me this makes them far more sensory than when they are occupied. Your mind can easily focus on what is around you and takes in so much more. The building’s voice is clear and a character and visual aesthetic emerges that was much harder to define than if it was a busy, populated environment. Capturing this character and stillness comes across well in the photos and is something people tell me they love about the images.
It has been put to me that photographing ruins and abandonment is beautifying something actually quite negative that impacts real people and society in general. I make no apologies for finding something positive, an uplifting or beautiful aspect to a situation that others may find distressing. Photographers didn’t cause the site to fail and fall into a derelict state and with my own work I don’t feel there’s a parallel with photographers who shoot among the ruins of a town like Detroit and the human tragedy unfolding there. The buildings I am interested in are uninhabited shells. I am interested purely in capturing the aesthetics, character and history of the building, showing the passage of time and the effects of nature on a structure that is no longer being maintained.

Click here to visit Matthew's website.


ADVANCE BOOKING ESSENTIAL TO BE SURE OF A PLACE. Please see TICKETS FOR EVENTS page for more ticket details and information on Season Tickets for Thames Valley Centre events.

Free tea, coffee and biscuits throughout the day. Bring a pack lunch

Note: the ticket price shown above against "Members Rate" is the rate that applies to members of the Digital Imaging Group only. It does not apply to RPS members who are not DI Group members.

PARKING: There is no parking at the Community Hall itself, except for speakers and judges, those disabled or anyone bringing heavy equipment to an event. Parking is in zones A and B of the Morrisons car park, accessed via Fernlea Drive - 200 metres beyond Emmview Close, and just after the entrance to Morrisons. For those using SatNav, the postcode for Morrisons is RG41 3SW, and for Fernlea Drive it is RG41 3DR.

DIRECTIONS: A map can be downloaded from here

Laurie Pate
Email the event organiser

Region: Thames ValleySIG(s): Digital Imaging, Digital Imaging Thames Valley