Short exposure: Richard and Janet Burdon

Minus Five © Janet Burdon.jpg

Image above: Minus Five © Janet Burdon

After giving up their full-time day jobs to pursue a career photography a few years ago, husband-and-wife-team Richard and Janet Burdon are passionate about taking pictures of the landscape, especially the North York Moors National Park. They answer our quick-fire questions…

Outdoor Photography: Hello! First of all please introduce yourself: tell us the type of pictures you like to take and how you first got into photography.

Richard & Janet Burdon: We’re drawn to wild and remote places like the North York Moors, the wilds of Scotland and the rugged beauty of the Lofoten Islands. We often create images of a limited colour palette but what we really love is the stark, almost minimal, monochrome images we produce in the winter. Janet also has an interest in infrared photography. We first got into taking pictures in 1991 when we went on the holiday of a lifetime to Africa. We came back with 10 reels of absolute rubbish so we decided to do something about it!

Image above: Golden Dawn – Loch Ard © Janet Burdon

OP: How often are you able to get out there and photograph, and is there a particular location you normally go to? 

R&JB: Most of our photography is done locally at selected viewpoints – we just wait for the conditions to come to us. Having recently quit full-time work we’re now in a position to get out regularly.

OP: What are you working on at the moment? 

R&JB: We both enjoy misty, minimal images, so winter is a busy time of year for us. We have our ongoing Ryedale in Winter project (that’s been running for 10 years) and is regularly exhibited throughout the Ryedale area.

OP: Where do you find your inspiration? 

R&JB: Living on the edge of the North York Moors and within easy reach of the coast, we find inspiration in nature and the elements all around us. As we mentioned before though it’s the simple winter images that truly inspire us.

Image above: Main Street, Village Bay, St Kilda © Richard Burdon

OP: What’s your dream photography project? 

R&JB: That’s an interesting question. Richard’s current dream project is to photograph on the island of St Kilda. He’s tried three times to get out there and camp but the weather has always meant he couldn’t stay overnight. Ultimately we’d both like to go somewhere like northern Scandinavia or Greenland – so winning Outdoor Photographer of the Year would be nice!

OP: Is there one thing in particular you think would improve your photography?

R&JB: Richard would like to get out in the countryside more, he bought a tent for his St Kilda project and really wants to put it to good use. Janet reckons a lighter camera and backpack would help her!

OP: What do you think is hot right now in the photography world?

R&JB: Landscape photography has seen a huge growth in popularity in recent years, making some popular locations (like Iceland and Lofoten) very crowded. I think people are starting to look for something different and this is making techniques like intentional camera movement fashionable, however we think it’s much better to follow your instincts rather than the crowd.

Image above: Pilgrim’s Way © Janet Burdon

OP: Where do you see your photography in five years time? 

R&JB: Richard gave up full-time work a couple of years ago to concentrate more on photography. We’ve been focusing on expanding the business over the last couple of years. We’ve been so busy we haven’t really given much thought to where we’ll go after the end of this year, let alone five years!

See more of Richard and Janet’s here.