Climate Change Cafe is an initiative to raise awareness of and inspire action on climate change and sustainability through the power of photography. It can be viewed as a virtual cafe where the online community can meet to both inform and be informed on matters related to sustainability and climate change.
Climate change is a complex, abstract and oft misunderstood topic made all the more difficult by the fact that changes in climate are global in nature and are not always visible or easy to attribute to a single cause. Communicating the urgency of climate change is particularly challenging. Scientific facts and figures can overwhelm. Sometimes words are not enough. Climate Change Cafe seeks to inform, share and inspire action and debate on climate change through the visual medium of photography.
Note – Images displayed on this website are not necessarily an endorsement of climate change in action (unless specifically stated).
Climate Change Cafe aspires to instill the beauty and fragility of Nature in the viewer’s mind. I hope that these images can illustrate the environmental challenges faced by wildlife and ecosystems due to potential climate change impacts. I intend to record the changes to our natural landscape through flooding, drought and other extreme weather events, which are forecasted to become more frequent and powerful as CO2 emissions rise in the atmosphere. Finally, I am particularly interested in portraying the tension between the man-made and natural landscape, such as a wind farm on a mountain-top or along a rocky coast. I want to capture the very place where the wild and the tamed intersect to explore this uneasy relationship.
The Project Triple C logo was designed as it depicts breaking waves on the shore and symbolizes rising sea levels, coastal erosion and wave power as a renewable energy source, all of which are intimately linked with climate change. A motif displaying a wind turbine is also integrated into the logo image.
The way I see it
I use my pictures to tell a story although this may be open to multiple interpretations depending on the viewer. I want the camera lens to not only be my eyes but also my voice. I want people to “connect” with the landscape through my photos.
I’m driven to capture the flow of energy across a scene as a creative analogy for the key role that energy plays in the whole debate on climate change. This can manifest itself as movement of cloud across the sky or water tumbling over rocks or even the swish of wind turbines as they cut through the air.
Capturing the essence of light is perhaps the greatest challenge for any photographer – the nuances in colour, strength, direction and focus. The interplay of light and shadow as it constantly changes can amplify the mundane into a dazzling pattern or shine a spotlight on an element in an image that would otherwise be overlooked. Light is pure, raw energy that creates mood, atmosphere and drama but for me, it is yet another shorthand for the energy debate centering on fossil fuels and renewables. I hope to enable others to “see the light” both literally and as a metaphor for climate change.
I am passionate about using the power of photography to –
- create a sense of wonder and awe in the viewer towards wilderness and wild places
- inspire others to take action on climate change by protecting natural ecosystems and landscapes
- encourage people to question our endless love affair with fossil fuels and the depletion of natural resources (such as freshwater) that are intimately linked with climate change
- open up the debate on the conflict between the need to build a new infrastructure to generate and transmit renewable energy versus the desire to protect wild landscapes and threatened ecosystems
- prompt people to think about waste and encourage recycling of natural resources.
I believe that a tipping point will be reached in the debate on climate change within the next couple of decades and that informed inspiring photography will play a key role in mobilizing action on a global scale.
I am very much on a journey as I develop my own photographic style and borrow from photographers across several related but distinct genres. I seek inspiration from photographers who not only excel as true masters of their craft but who also use their exceptional talent for the betterment of the Natural World and Society as a whole.
I am greatly influenced by landscape photographers such as Charlie Waite in the UK and of course the great Ansel Adams, whose black & white images were influential in protecting Yosemite and Sequoia as National Parks in the U.S. I have huge respect for environmental photographers such as Edward Burtynsky and Garth Lenz who excel at portraying the beauty and destructive power of industrial landscapes such as the Alberta tar sands in Canada. I greatly admire wildlife photographers such as Paul Nicklin and his work in Polar Regions to raise awareness of climate change as well as Michael ‘Nick’ Nichols whose “mega-transect” project has influenced the protection of tropical rainforest in Gabon. Yann Arthus-Bertrand gave me a new perspective on the world as viewed from above as well as establishing the Good Planet Foundation.
All these photographers prove that it is possible to make a real difference for the better and I hope to do so in my own small way.