I wonder why a small number of trees have been spared – maybe it is because they are indigenous like the silver birch, perhaps the trees were inaccessible to the machinery or even that someone had spared a small stand of trees by the loch for the future or to remind us of what we have lost?
It is not just the devastation of a beautiful landscape that is lost, it is the relationships between the land and people, the trees and other species of animals and plants and the inter-relations between the trees themselves. It is the interdependence between various parts of a complex ecosystem. This is not just a loss of trees but the lingering impact on the environment. Of course, the trees were never intended to be here forever, not even for a lifetime longer than a human life span, but until they were mature enough to deliver the investment made in planting them in the first place – a cash crop.
I am using my iPhone again today. I am not yet ready to start thinking about how I can sympathetically record the scene, one of devastation and loss where the bodies remain at the scene.
I want to produce images that are aesthetically beautiful but how does this sit with what has happened? How do I photograph something that is no longer here- absence rather than presence? But, this is an opportunity to record the inevitable changes and contingencies in the landscape, to reflect on my feelings and thoughts and produce a collection of images that pay homage to the lives lost.