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April - Charlie Waite.

The viewer is an innocent - seldom knowing what went into the making of a photograph. The most peaceful and poetic image may have a dramatic or even alarming story behind it. Stories that are not always reflected in the tranquility of the image. Under the surface of the calmest water can run the strongest currents.

Now considered one of the UK’s leading landscape photographers, Charlie Waite began his career as an actor and stage assistant, but later switched to photographing actors instead. When he came to the realization that he would be able to earn more as a photographer than as an actor, he bought his first Hasselblad, a 500C with four lenses, and continued working for some years as a portrait photographer with actors comprising the majority of his clientele. At the end of the 1970s, Waite studied photography for a year at Salisbury College of Art, while at the same time working as an assistant advertising photographer. “The time I spent with advertising photographers was very instructive and good for my career,” says Charlie. 


Now, 28 years later, Charlie is completely engrossed in landscape photography. “I often think about that wonderful feeling, so rarely experienced, when everything seems to be in harmony. When the light, the colors, the shadows, the whole balance are so perfectly interwoven that you become truly overwhelmed.”
 
Waite's photographic style is very personal and his pictures radiate a magical feeling of calm and harmony. He uses fine grain transparency film, graduated filters, and often polarizing filters. The images are drum scanned and then printed by Charlie himself as IRIS prints on fine art paper. “This procedure ensures that the depth and details in the picture are optimally transferred,” he explains.

 


Waite has not limited his exploration to the British countryside. He has also traveled and taken photographs in countries such as China, Namibia, and Sri Lanka. Waite is a very prolific photographer and has published 20 books on photography over the last 20 years. His latest book “Seeing Landscapes” was published last year and he will be publishing his first book of black and white photographs in the fall of 2002.

Waite has also been in great demand as a lecturer, both in his homeland and across Europe, and has participated in a number of exhibitions in major cities such as London, Tokyo, and New York.

Further information about Charlie Waite can be found at his website.

Kerstin Fiedler