Jerry Daniel is a rather self deprecating sort of chap – he describes himself as a miserable, old, deaf git who enjoys being on his own capturing pictures in the countryside.
It is true that he has reached his 70th year; he is 50 per cent deaf and yes, he does spend most of his time outside with a camera.
But when I met him he was anything but miserable and he certainly seems to be enjoying his retirement.
It was his increasing deafness which forced him to retire early from his career as a junior school teacher and he also attributes the condition to his love for photography.
“My son has said that it is the perfect hobby for me and he is right. It is a pursuit most people do on their own and feel as if the photography I create now grew out of my deafness.
“Most of my pictures are taken in quiet, rural locations where I can relax without having to try to hear what is going on around me.
“All I have to concentrate on is looking around me and observing the landscape,” he explained.
Jerry studied graphic design at art school in London and says that he has always been interested in composition and layout.
He followed his studies with a few years lecturing at art college, but then moved out of London to Sheffield with his wife Helen and started teaching younger children.
They have now made their home at Wingerworth near Chesterfield.
“My life is very different now, but I am happy that I am doing something creative with my time.
“I like my photographs to stand on their own. I aim to make them work without textural support. Each image has to work without explanation.
“A hundred different people will see 100 different things in the landscape. My pictures are personal in that no-one else will see quite what I have seen.
“My pictures are usually of minor landscapes or features and some have an element of perceptual ambiguity.
“I look for landscape features which become compositional devices that influence our reading of depth in the 2D picture plane.
“I like lines and patterns and I definitely love taking pictures of water. It is my favourite subject.”
Jerry’s photographs of reflections in water are certainly eye-catching and he undoubtably has a eye for spotting interesting shapes.
He seems to have a knack of making something beautiful from even the most ugly of subjects, such as the plastic sheeting caught on the barbed wire at the B&Q store in Chesterfield.
Jerry has work exhibited at the West Studios, which are part of Chesterfield College, in Chesterfield and exhibits at various festivals across the county during the year. Go to http://www.jerry-daniel.pixels.com to see more of his work.