Francis Meadow Sudcliff

My tutor suggested me to have a look at the work of Francis Meadow Sudcliff (1853 - 1941), a photographer who is well known for his work on the fishing village, Whitby) he lived in and photographed throughout his life. 

When looking at his images I am first of all struck by the quality of the photographs and spontaneity of the subjects. Most portraits in those days were very stiff and formal, here I see that Sudcliff made an effort to portray the people and life as it was. Because of this, I feel immediately drawn in the images and feel connected to the people in it. The children playing, the fishermen at work, the beauty of everyday life and the everyday landscape around him.

He's an example of how it is possible to keep on seeing in beauty in scenes that you may encounter everyday. How to keep a fresh eye for what's going on around you and keep on seeing what makes people interesting and special. 

I recognize the community spirit in his images from the fishing villages I photographed in Senegal. There is a sense of cooperation, working together and dependency, but on the other hand you can see that every individual has a unique role and personality that make the community stronger. 

Sudcliff shows the beauty, fun and adventure children find in everyday circumstances, the worn down faces of hardworking people, pride and perseverence. I think he's able to do this because he doesn't comply to what photography was supposed to be like in those days. His images are not to present oneself in a formal or better way, but they are reflections of everyday life, and especially the beauty of being who you are and the life that you live.

Huxley-Parlour, G. (2015) FRANK MEADOW SUTCLIFFE (1853-1941) | prints, photographs for sale | beetles & Huxley. Available at: http://www.beetlesandhuxley.com/artists/frank-meadow-sutcliffe-1853-1941.html (Accessed: 21 September 2015)