GUY HAVELL M.PHOTOG. AIPP Master Photographer
Guy Havell is an Australian Institute of Professional Photography (AIPP) accredited Master of Photography specialising in high resolution medium format landscape, travel and architecture photography. A prolific traveller with a great passion for nature and finding the more remote photographic opportunities, his travels take him to some of the world's most spectacular scenic locations regardless of their inaccessibility. Whether it be shooting a storm at Death Valley in 50 degree heat or wading through a freezing creek in some unknown slot canyon, his enthusiasm, passion and knowledge for capturing beautiful natural landscapes really shines through in his photographic works. Using both digital and film in his workflow, Guy favours the totally manually operated camera's as opposed to the latest fully automated SLR models as they are more rewarding to use, and are more reliant on the ability of the photographer rather than the technology of the camera in the process of producing a good photograph. Image quality is also important with landscape shooting, and working with a technical camera allows the ability to adjust perspective control through camera movements to attain a technically correct image. For Guy it's about having patience and through that trying to achieve the best possible outcome, and when all the ingredients come together out in the field the rewards are photographic heaven.
The imagery on this website is the culmination of many years of complete dedication, lots of travel to extremely remote locations, and above all a true passion for photographing the world's natural landscapes. Virtually every one of these images has a story behind it, and all of them were carefully planned sometimes months in advance just to maximise my chances of shooting the chosen location at it's most visually stunning. In fact, although huge travel distances are sometimes involved, if the conditions aren't optimum for the shoot I won't waste my time and will return the next day, next week or even the next year until I get the shot I have in mind or am happy with. To say I do this because I love natural landscapes is somewhat of an understatement. I have always enjoyed the outdoors and nature and always look forward to my next photographic adventure to discover something new, broaden my knowledge, and open my mind. Any chance to escape the ever increasingly modern technological world which some seen to be obsessed by is fine by me. Don't get me wrong, I spend way too much time in front of a computer too, but the reality is more of us need to turn off that phone, log off that computer and get out to a national park for a day or two, and appreciate the fact that nothing man made on the face of this earth has more power or beauty than nature itself. For those of you who don't quite understand what I'm saying, spare a few minutes of your valuable day to peruse this website, and discover what indescribable beauty the real world has to offer.
For me when it comes to landscape photography, my philosophy is to get to know a location as well as I can before even venturing in with my cameras. Sometimes a window of opportunity of only seconds exists between getting the shot and walking away, so although this is a slow and calculating form of photography, working fast and knowing the local environment is vital. Often several days are needed at a particular location in order to study how the light falls on the land and work out the best possible shooting angles according to the available light and weather conditions. Of course there is times when something presents itself randomly as an ideal subject, but generally a potential photo location is researched thoroughly prior to travel. For me my ultimate goal is to create a powerful image that evokes mood, harmony and peace, so the compositional aspects of subject placement, lead in lines and balance are vitally important to me in generating a strong composition, as well as texture and colour. Creative Black and White and long single exposure images are an important part of my workflow as well. I find often even the most mundane subject matter can be made interesting by careful placement of subject or by the creative use of shutter speed and aperture, and many times I've walked around a location aimlessly for hours attempting to create something out of nothing often with good success. I believe patience and perserverence are key ingredients to good photography but so is knowledge, technique and passion.
For those photographers interested in the technical side I currently work mostly with the Swiss made ALPA 12 STC technical camera and German Rodenstock and Schneider Kreuznach digitally optimised large format lenses in the field. 100% of my images with this camera system are shot from the stability of a tripod and almost all are single exposures with the rare exception of a stitched image here and there. My focus on each and every shot is an artistic creative single exposure. I don't machine gun 1000s of exposures off and then pick the best ones. My preference is to get it right in camera with minimal post production fine tuning. The Alpa technical camera and high resolution lens combination working in conjunction with a Phase One Medium Format Digital Back provides the best possible image quality of any camera system available and also allows the perspective control tilt-swing-shift-rise-fall movements which are so vital in producing a technically corrrect landscape image. This camera also offers the unique flexibility of using a film back as well if required. The image capturing process with this setup is substantially more complex than a ‘normal’ camera, and with absolutely no automation of any kind, the whole picture taking process is a slow, contemplative and deliberate old school pre-shot routine of manual adjustments and calculations and then finally manually cocking and releasing the shutter, with the digital back simply there as a capture device. It's an enjoyable and rewarding process and as an old school photographer and that's my preferred style.
*ALPA 12 STC technical camera
*PHASE ONE IQ 260 Medium format digital back
*LINHOF Super Rollex 6x9 Medium format film back
*RODENSTOCK / ALPA HR Alpagon f5.6 / 23mm LB lens
*RODENSTOCK / ALPA HR Alpagon f4.0 / 40mm SB17 lens
*RODENSTOCK / ALPA HR Alpagon f5.6 / 70mm SB17 lens
*SCHNEIDER / ALPA Apo-Helvetar f5.6 / 120mm Aspheric SB34 lens
ALPA tilt-swing adapter 0 - 5 degree 17mm
ALPA viewfinder + masks
ALPA / LINHOF 3D Micro Leveling Head
Acratech GP Ballhead
GITZO 3532L / GT3541 Systematic Tripods
SEKONIC L 358 Light Meter + 1 Degree spot meter
LEE Wide Angle Lens Hood + LEE ND and GND filters
FORMATT HITECH ND and GND filters
+ accessories too numerous to list.
FOTOMAN 617 II -- Panoramic Medium Format Film Camera | SCHNEIDER KREUZNACH Super Angulon f5.6 / 90mm lens
FUJIFILM X-PRO 1 -- APS-C Mirrorless Compact Digital SLR | FUJINON XF 35mm f1.4 R lens
CANON 5D Mark II -- Full Frame Digital SLR + TS-E 17 mm f4.0L | 24 mm f1.4L Mark II USM lens | 8 - 15 mm f4.0L Fisheye | 70 - 200 mm f2.8L IS | 100 mm f2.8 Macro | 17 - 40 mm f4.0L | 1.4 x II Extender.