Ellen Grace Folkard

“Paths, words and the rhythm and ritual of walking help me to navigate myself and the world.”

Brits, 2018, p. 64

This sentence quoted from Louisa Thomsen Brits’ book ‘Path: A short story about reciprocity’ (2018) is a statement that I can relate with and was the main conceptual starting point for my last unit, where I was exploring the part that walking played within my photographic practice, realising the significance that taking a slow, gradual journey across a stretch of land on foot has upon my working process.  

Through the slightly mindless and repetitive action of the walk, I find my mind and focus to be drawn away from the action at hand and to instead move towards the natural environment that I explored. Moreover, I believe that the physical act of the walk has allowed me to feel closer to the natural environment, as I am slowly – on foot – immersing myself within the vastness of the landscape, deepening my physical and emotional connection towards it.

Furthermore, by allowing myself the time and space to explore the environment on foot, it has also changed the way that I approach my photographic work, as I find myself contemplating more behind the camera, what I want to say with the image, how I want to represent the landscape, which has allowed for a more considered and thoughtful way of working to emerge. 

Words: Ellen Grace Folkard, MA Photography, @ellengracephoto

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