Black Beaches – Richard Young

Richard Young is a full-time landscape and wildlife photographer based in Wellington and the founder of New Zealand Photography Workshops. He is a brand ambassador for Benro Filters and a printing ambassador for Epson New Zealand.

The deep shadows of floating islands and black sand beaches define the structure, transitions of tones within the sky and sea guide your eye across the image, the luminosity helps connect distant parts of the frame. All this can be lost if our eye is caught by unwanted distractions like ripples on the water, the ebb and flow of a wave, or the prominence of clouds. By choosing to capture these photographs with long exposures — I have helped to render out these distractions and turn them into a blank canvas, giving presence to the subject.

Capture over the space of two years on Taranaki’s coastline, with its volcanic black sand beaches and the westward-facing sky that dances from a vivid hue to a soft pastel tone at sunset. One image speaks a little differently to the rest, as this is where I started, and over time how I wished to tell the story of this landscape developed. Reconnecting with this dramatic coastline has offered me a place to refocus both my mind and my vision.

This article is featured in NZPhotographer Magazine’s March 2020 Issue.

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About the Author
Richard Young is a full-time landscape and wildlife photographer based in Wellington. He has been guiding groups of photographers in New Zealand since 2010 and founded New Zealand Photography Workshops in 2013.

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