‘Getting ever closer to Tono, the rice fields, which were just before the harvest, opened up like a golden carpet.’
The above is an excerpt from the photo-book Tales of Tono by Daido Moriyama, a book that I have mentioned before as being probably my favourite photo-book I own, as much for the writings it contains as for the photographs. The quote comes from a section where Daido talks about arriving at the small Japanese town of Tono for the first time; hanging out of the window of the train, snapping away at the passing scenery and describing the joy that it brought to his depressed heart.
The meditative properties of photography is something that is often overlook, as well as being a creative outlet, I feel that photography can be the medium through which we may cleanse our souls, escape the toils of the everyday and visualise our dreams; probably no more realised than when shooting the landscapes of our homeland, the rolling blankets of our inner place, our sanctuary.
Personally, I don’t shoot a whole lot of landscapes, although I have made it a goal of 2018 to do so, to capture what it means to me to be a native of the North of England, this land that has provided for me, nurtured me and gave me respite and relaxation when I needed it. These shots are some I took on film last summer; I wasn’t thinking of Daido when I took them, but looking at them now I can see the resemblance, even though they look different, it is not Japan for one thing, but the feeling is there I feel; I guess it is my small Tales-of-Tono-Esque tribute to not only Moriyama, but also to the many landscapes that inhabit both our hearts and homelands.
Ima wa sayōnara