I am currently studying Fine Art at Ulster University and will be starting a Masters in Photography in September. I am a photographer and I have worked in various photography genres such as still life and portraiture. My earlier work focused on local landscape and upon returning to home during the Covid19 Pandemic, I noticed several changes i.e., a lot more housing being built, more rubbish, increased traffic, and less livestock in the surrounding fields. This was a clear sign of urbanisation and increased human pollution in the rural location. This urbanisation of the rural landscape made me think about human impact on the environment and it brought to my mind the old saying: ‘red sky at night, shepherd’s delight’. This saying got me thinking; well, what if the sky was yellow? or orange or what if the grass and shrubs became purple and pink as a result of human activity. This was the point that my more recent work: The Chemical Landscapes were born. By working in Photoshop, I used colour filters that I had seen in sunsets such as orange’s, yellows, and pinks. Additionally, I incorporated some purples and navy blues to create some contrasts and when these were added into the images they came to life. Initially I created small scale prints, but the chemical-coloured landscapes, once printed in a larger scale looked better and had a bigger impact. I then experimented with the printed images by folding them and manipulating them. I wanted to take a 2D flat image and make it into a 3D object. With folding different areas of the photograph, or folding the whole photograph, I was able to change the perspective of the landscape and make the viewer feel transported to another world. This manipulation also refers to the human pollution of the landscape.



Megan McWhirter