As part of the current Gay Photographers Network exhibition, ‘Gayzed‘, we thought it would be a good idea to find out a little more from a few of the artists. First up is John Drennan, a fine art photographer intrigued by themes within landscape, transport, architecture and textures. We asked him a few questions to learn a little more about his work.
Hi John! First off, when did you become a member of the GPN and what drew you to the organisation?
I’ve been a member of the GPN for over five years now. I initially joined as it was a group that allowed me to bring together several different aspects of my life, but I stayed for the cameraderie and lasting friendships that developed, as well as the skills-sharing and opportunities that we can create for ourselves as a group.
Are there any particular subjects you are interested in and how do you explore them in your work?
I’m naturally drawn to textures, particularly stone and metal. But also dereliction in general. I always feel there’s a residual ‘energy’ in objects that have been abandoned, and whilst their original function is finished, there’s very often a second story to be told. My work involves finding that story, and portraying it in a way that’s accessible for people.
Where does your inspiration derive from? Are there any photographers or artists that have particularly influenced your work?
The photographer who influenced me most directly was landscape photographer Dan Warsinger. It was eye opening to see how he sought out things like fallen trees and rocks, just as part of the foreground for the main object of the shot, but made them part of the visual dialogue.
Are there any specific techniques you use when photographing? How would you describe your personal style?
I think the best technique I ever learned was ‘wait’. Sometimes you have to ignore your first impressions of a subject, and wait for the second and third impressions to emerge. Very often that’s just being close to the object you want to capture, trying to distill the thoughts it creates, and then waiting for that ‘there it is moment’ when you understand what’s pulled you towards that object.
Have you got any future projects planned?
The most important future step now is finding some gallery representation. I’ve really been exploring producing work on aluminium and brushed metal surfaces, and it’s time to showcase that work.
All images © John Drennan.
‘Gayzed’ will be on show at The Strand Gallery from 15th – 20th October.