This is a love letter to golden light and little pockets of wilderness in the middle of a bustling town. I was born in Oxfordshire, where the countryside is abundant and available within a short walk. When I first moved in with my other half back in 2016, I was worried about the lack of open, green spaces. In the Black Country, there isn't much sprawling countryside between towns, often there's nothing but a sign in the small space between streets to tell you where one ends and the next begins (at least, that's the case where we live).
During my first week, while I settled in and waited for my then-new job to begin, the aforementioned other half took me on walks down canals to little snatches of green, sewn into the towns like the patches of a quilt, where, once you're in, you forget you're in a town at all. One, in particular, having wild horses wandering in the long-grass, and goats sitting in ridges carved into hillside from hours of sunbathing.
Then we walked a little way from our flat, down the side of a little care home in an otherwise unassuming street (where the houses are lovely and different and make you want to live in them), and suddenly the countryside seemed endless, only interrupted half-way through by a road, which if you were on it, you wouldn't assume that it was surrounded by countryside. I was instantly in love, and that love only deepened when he took me to the old, disused engine house which looks like it had been dropped into the middle of the greenery at random (which I will be using for a shot once the perfect idea reveals itself).
We have Sparrow to thank for these images. Sparrow who sent me a message simply saying "You got a sun-themed pic for your next upload yet?" The answer was no, my next upload was going to be a little moody set in front of some beautiful spindly silver birches, which you will see soon. But then images appeared in my head and I knew I had to shoot them, and I knew I needed to be somewhere fresh and green and expansive. So there I went.
Just me, my tripod, a tiara and my netting - and the setting sun. And the countless dog-walkers, normal walkers, families and teenagers that walked past. I've never been a particularly confident person, and I've only shot self-portraits in public a few times, and fewer still of those completely on my own. I was incredibly nervous before I started shooting but the light was perfect, I could see for miles and everything was golden - so I decided I would be too.
So this is a love letter to extraordinary things in ordinary places, to golden sunsets and rolling hills, to tiaras and veils and dancing, to finally having the confidence to prance in front of the camera in the middle of nowhere (which is actually very much in the middle of somewhere) and create something I love even when I'm not entirely sure it's going to work properly.
I am so happy it did.