Phil Plumb: photographer

America’s National Parks hold a special fascination for amateur photographer Phil Plumb. 

The wilderness, the light, the sheer beauty of the landscape – especially in Yosemite and the Grand Canyon – call him back again and again.

“There is something spiritual about the national parks for me. It is something I can’t really explain but they are just sublime and the way I feel when I am there is almost perfect,” he said.

Phil has been fortunate to be able to travel widely during his 68 years having worked in the aviation industry but now, retired from full time work, he has more time to concentrate on his hobby from his home in Wirksworth. 

He has been a member of the Matlock Camera Club for ten years and says he tends to make sure his camera is always at hand wherever he goes.

He has a collection of images on flickr which reveal his love not just for the vast open spaces of the American West but also Africa, India and Europe.

“I have been taking pictures since I was 12 years old but only started taking them more keenly in the 70s when I got my first SLR. I am enrolled as a Licentiate of The Royal Photographic Society.

Phil’s photographs are carefully composed and sensitive to tonal balance – in the past he has concentrated on his favourite wild landscapes and the natural world, but more recently has found inspiration in architecture and urban landscapes.

It was wanting to learn more about those subjects that led to him taking a course with three Derbyshire-based photographers: Paul Hill, Nick Lockett and Martin Shakeshaft who stage workshops as The Photographers’ Place.

“The course was held in Wirksworth and the practical advice and feedback I gained from such experienced tutors was brilliant. I went on the course to help me develop a theme to my work and it was really very good.

“Over the past few years I have been driven by improving my photographic technique but I haven’t really spent time looking into what I am trying to portray in my pictures. 

“I have always wanted to be able to paint pictures but I can’t. 

“What I can do is take photographs and I believe it is a medium I am good at, so I was really pleased with the positive feedback and advice I had on the workshop.

“It really inspired me to try something new and I am looking to working on a new project with the town’s traders. It is still early days – I am still in the planning stage – but I hope to get started soon.”

You can see more of Phil’s photography on his Flickr page.