Dennis Minty’s Slow Photography

Dennis Minty’s Slow Photography

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Photographer and photo book author Dennis Minty releases his new eBook Slow Photography, Images with Intent showcasing a collection of photos that take on a more philosophical approach

To belong to a place is a gift. I have been blessed with a profound and abiding sense of belonging to Newfoundland,” quoted self-taught photographer and photo book author Dennis Minty in his 2015 publication; Newfoundland, An Island Apart. 

Minty was strutting around, Kodak Brownie camera in hand, by the age of 12, connecting his love for photography with his love for nature. He went on to become a wildlife biologist and environmental educator. His love for growing and nurturing his link with the natural world landed him amongst the team of creators behind Salmonier Nature Park, and he managed the place for over 20 years. His first photo book, Wildland Visions, was released in 1993 after having shot photography as an amateur for more than 25 years. 

“It was the film days, so the images were just piling up in boxes in a cupboard. Occasionally, I’d have a projected slideshow with family and friends, but that was it,” Minty shared in an interview with The Newfoundland Herald. 

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“A photo is a useless thing unless it is seen, so for what was I doing all of this?” 

Out of frustration, he gathered together a collection of photographs set around the theme of ‘wild Newfoundland and Labrador.’ Minty called up local publishing company Breakwater Books, which led to the publishing of Wildland Visions. 

This was followed by another release through Breakwater titled Wildflowers of the Rock in 1995. Minty began gaining recognition, going on to publish multiple photo books over the years including Enchanted Light, The Galapagos Islands and Ecuador, and Labrador, The Big Land. 

Sharing Connection

“When I make and share photos, I’m celebrating and sharing that connection. I want to do more than record what I see,” Minty shared. “Rather, I hope I can inspire an emotional response in the viewer that might echo what I feel when I am making the image. I hope that the eye sees and the heart listens and that I can spread some awareness and respect for the natural world around us.”

An emotional response is exactly what Minty was aiming for with his latest photo book, Slow Photography, Images with Intent. With 240 pages of images chosen carefully by the photographer himself, each photo represents the idea of slowing down, being thoughtful and reflective, and showing intention through art. 

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“‘Connection’ is the word, and lord knows our society is in deep trouble because of the broken connection between people and nature,” Minty explained. 

“Slow photography is one way to improve the person to nature connection, both to our own benefit and to the benefit of the environment. There’s a lot to love about the digital world and I embrace it, but I fear that some aspects of photography, ones that are especially important to me, are eroding away.” 

Morning Walk, Port Rexton, Newfoundland

Between the pages of beautiful landscapes and wild sightings, Minty showcases simple exercises that help reinforce the idea behind slow photography, and dive further into the shooting experience. 

As a society, we’ve become so accustomed to the digital world and having everything readily available with the click of a button that sometimes we forget the intention behind what we’re doing. Experiencing photography as an art takes patience and composition, slowing down and being present in the moment.

The ‘artful’ side 

“I simply felt like doing a book not just showing pictures, but about my thinking on photography. I felt I had something to say about it. I had been teaching some of the concepts in the book through presentations and workshops for years. It didn’t start out as Slow Photography, but more of a collection of my thoughts about the craft. The technological aspect of photography is well covered in scores of books and articles, but I thought the ‘artful’ side of photography was more obscure.” 

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Purchase your eBook copy of Dennis Minty’s Slow Photography, Images with Intent via Payhip at payhip.com and check out his other work at mintynaturephotography.ca

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