Mike Finley Photography

I had my first camera as a child in the 1960s but my real interest in photography started when I picked up a copy of ‘Hana’ by Ishimoto from a ‘remainders’ pile in a bookshop. A few years later (in 1999) I moved from the urban South East of England to a village in Cheshire, and in 2000 I spent a week at Lakeland Photographic Holidays, and saw some of John Gravett’s lith prints while I was there. These two factors led to me concentrating on monochrome floral and landscape photography.

Initially I was using monochrome film in cameras ranging from a Canon T90 (and T70 as backup) to a Cambo 5×4 studio camera, primarily Fuji Acros and Konica Infrared film. I had my own darkroom and did my own developing and printing but also experimented with scanning negatives and digital printing, which proved useful as times changed! (I participated in some early international print exchanges amongst monochrome photographers making digital prints.) I’ve almost entirely switched over to digital now, and have had one of my earlier digital SLRs converted to infrared. (Digital infrared is very different from film infrared!) I shoot my main digital images in colour and convert in the computer, rather than accepting the camera’s built in monochrome conversions. This gives me much more flexibility in developing the final image – and have written an article on digital monochrome photography following a request from the local camera club for a talk on the subject – you can find this online on my blog at http://words.mikefinley.co.uk/monochrome-photography/ . With the ability to choose between colour and monochrome images on a shot by shot basis, rather than dependent on the film in the camera, I now produce more colour images than before, though I am still mainly interested in monochrome photography.

My monochrome photography has been selected for exhibitions in the UK and France. I was selected for the inaugural Swansea City Exhibition of International Photography in Wales, and the Hype Gallery in Arles, France, and have exhibited in a number of places throughout the UK. Most recently, I’ve been represented by a local gallery – Studio 5 in Holmes Chapel.

My work has also been published in a number of photographic books and magazines in recent years, primarily in those concentrating on monochrome photography. Images have appeared in ‘Black and White Photography’, ‘Mono’, and ‘Digital Photography’ magazines, and also in three editions of ‘Best of Friends’, an annual yearbook of photography, no longer being published. In October 2010, one of my infrared prints, “Puff, the Magic Dragon” was selected for the Royal Photographic Society’s ‘Infrared 100’ exhibition, curated by Andy Finney.

VISIT SITE: UK monochrome landscape photography