Made In England
Harry Cory Wright: A photographic journey
Landscape photographer Harry Cory Wright records a video-diary as he travels from Norwich to Bristol in search of two defining images from each area for the BBC series Made In England.
Harry Cory Wright on Brancaster beach
Harry Cory Wright is a man with a mission - to immerse himself in the natural landscape of the world and capture it on film.
For the BBC series Made In England, Harry was challenged to travel from Norwich to Bristol in a quest to find two pictures.
Made by Norwich-based Imago Productions, the half-hour programme sees Harry exploring his native Norfolk, attempting to capture the very essence of the natural landscape in one shot.
He then drives to the heart of Bristol where, having been taken out of his 'comfort zone', he has to find a second picture which captures a very different mood.
Harry's pictures are renowned for their large-scale finish, printing at more than two metres, shot using a Gandolfi 10x8 inch wooden plate camera.
In 1998 he set up the Saltwater gallery and collective in Burnham Market, a base from which to give some structure to the processes involved in the creation of his work.
"Once the photograph is taken, the process by which it begins to evolve requires much skill and dedication; much more than I can do alone. The team we have to achieve this is called Saltwater," said Harry.
While filming Made In England for BBC One, Harry also recorded a video diary. Here you can enjoy his journey:
It's been the most beautiful day in Norfolk that I have seen in the last 10 years. It was minus eight overnight, and the air was still and clean.
The tide came in during the night and the dawn light revealed where ice from the water got caught round the reeds… quite an amazing sight.
By the afternoon, a sea mist had swept in over the whole coast and we could barely see 30 yards. We went to Brancaster beach and I took a picture of the silvery light over the sand, with the mist rolling about like something alive.
I was after a picture that summed up the nature of north Norfolk and how I photograph it. I don't think I could have been luckier with today.
Got to Brancaster Staithe well before dawn to make sure we caught the light growing in the east, but the mist was thick and low.
We spent some time filming through the reeds and I had to wave around my high-powered torch for the TV camera… it threw bright beams of light in the dense fog.
All the sounds were deadened and it felt altogether different to that extraordinary day yesterday of such intense steely blue.
By the afternoon we were all extremely cold. With the fog had come a breeze from the west that seemed to cut you to the bone.
Met the crew in North Creake and set off. We had to stop many times for 'up and pasts' where they filmed me driving the van.
I find it almost impossible to drive past this big camera beside the road without looking at it. I keep being tempted to pull faces or pretend that I've lost control.
Arrival in Bristol was a strange moment where the size of the task became apparent. What if I can't see anything to photograph? What if it rains heavily? What if I'm rubbish?
Bad news for crew – up at 5.45am again. I got a bit bossy as there was a full moon out and we needed to move fast to get a picture.
Bristol (detail) by Harry Cory Wright
We drove around looking for high ground and all that happened was I got lost. Before I knew it the cloud had thickened and the day became grey and overcast.
I was drawn hugely to a particular place in Stokes Croft where there is so much going on. It's not an obviously beautiful aspect of the city but seems to embody the spirit of what I have seen.
It is also a very bold picture to take and will, with luck, be a sharp contrast to the picture I took in Norfolk.
Harry searches for 'the shot' in Bristol
Up at 5.15am to get to Stokes Croft before the daylight comes. There is a great energy as we are all aware that this is a key moment in this programme.
As I take the picture I become increasingly sure that this is the one. It looks outstanding - and asks so many questions... just what I was after?
The Norfolk picture was all calm and horizontal; a blue day of sparsity, peace and stillness. Here on this street, however, was a view of astonishing, almost overwhelming, business and interaction.
We travelled back through the Midlands on another grey day. It's mostly all done now and I am longing to get home to see the two prints for real.
We get back to film a final sequence and I can see that the cameraman has also noticed the most wonderful light growing in the west.
We fly down to the beach as the sky opens into reds, purples, yellows and blues and spend our last daylight minutes quietly looking at this most wonderful place of north Norfolk.
Made In England with Harry Cory Wright is broadcast on Wednesday, 23 April, 2008, at 10.40pm on BBC1 in the East and West.
The finished images taken by Harry will be available from the official Made In England website as a high-resolution download for a limited period after the programme is transmitted.
last updated: 21/04/2008 at 10:02