The Psychedelic Surfer of the Peak District 2015

The ancient landscape around Sheffield completely mesmerised me the first time I saw it seven years ago. Since then I have kept coming back to explore different areas of it with my camera. This composition is made of pictures produced during those trips.
The arrangement of the shapes, as well as the lighting, is highly influenced by J.M.W. Turner’s paintings. There is a legend, which suggests that on one of the visits to his patron, Walter Fawkes, at Farnley Hall, West Yorkshire in 1810, Turner took Fawkes’ son to the moors to do some sketching. As they were both drawing, a storm slowly approached them from the distance. Turner put the pencil down and said: ‘There, Hawkie. In a couple of years you’ll see this and it will be called Hannibal Crossing the Alps! ‘ We all know and sneer at the diversity and instability of the weather over Northern England, however, if you happen to be in the right place at the right time, it can reveal moments of breathtaking beauty and grandeur. It is also to do with the imagination and inner freedom of the spectator to see things in a different way – if a squal over the Yorkshire moors can turn into a no-holds-barred Alpine cataclysm, a view from Mam Tor can transform itself into an ocean surf!
This piece is also about the experience of taking psychedelic substances on a sunny day outside in the Peaks, feeling a magical cleansing connectivity with every living thing around, and witnessing the landscape, weather, and light, revealing their hidden aspects and transmuting into something hyperspatial.

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