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CREDIT: Ila Hinduja-Francis

The power of photography

A wonderful example of diversity of practice

Through the pandemic we will all have got used to discovering new things through online content. We discover new skills, ideas and sometimes new photographers. I am often surprised by the diversity of practice I find and the differences in motivations I see in the work of others. And occasionally to my delight I find these in unexpected places; in this case an on-line conference on a topic that was completely separate from photography.

With one of her images and in her own words I would like to introduce you to Ila Hinduja-Francis.

"My name is Ila and I am 12 years old. I have been interested in photography for just over a year now. I was lucky enough to be given a camera as a present last year and it was one of the best presents I have received. 

Photography soon became one of my main hobbies. During lockdown I was very nervous about going out, and preferred to stay indoors.  I am lucky to live near the countryside though, and as the weather improved we used to go for long evening walks when the roads were quieter and I always took my camera with me.  One reason I starting wanting to go out was to take photographs.  I always used to try and time our walks so that the sun was setting, so that I could get the right lighting for my photos. I mostly enjoy taking photos of mini-creatures, especially slugs and snails, but also enjoy taking photos of landscapes, and especially those sunsets. Recently I have put some of my landscape photography to good use; I have been selling photo cards for a local autism charity in Macclesfield and have raised nearly £100 for them.

When I was younger I used to suffer from selective mutism at school, and although I talk more now, I suppose you could say I am a little reserved.  I am shy around people and also not so keen about being in front of the camera.  I am definitely not a fan of selfies. Some people say that you can hide behind a lens, but I love seeing the world through a lens, constructing my photographs and analysing scenery and the natural world.   The whole process of taking one photograph can take a very long time, but it is extremely satisfying when you press that ‘click’ button and get the lighting and detail just right.

Everything I know about photography so far I have taught myself. I still have a lot to learn, especially when it comes to shutter speeds, apertures and lighting. I would love to join a photography group, either in person or online, when I am old enough, but until then I will continue observing the nature around me through my camera lens."

It is my privilege as RPS President to welcome people like Ila to the world of Photography.