In his latest body of work, In Flight, acclaimed animal photographer Mark Harvey reveals incredibly detailed photographs of everyday British birds, captured mid-flight as they go about their daily business.
Recognised as one of the UK's leading practitioners in equine fine art photography, Harvey offers us a breathtaking, detailed glimpse at the world of wildlife we all know, yet rarely notice. Featuring eight different species of Britain's most common birds, the images were shot in the Norfolk Broads during lockdown earlier this year.
Magpies, blue tits, starlings, goldfinches, great tits, coal tits, long-tail tits, and greenfinches are the stars of this fine show – all presented in Harvey's trademark style of lighting and detail, which lends a dramatic, almost sculpture-like stillness to his subject. His signature lighting style, refined through 15 years of working with horses, is now used in a scaled-down version, resembling a set-up more suited to high-end jewellery photography, with the key difference being, that the subjects are free-flying wild birds.
Similar in grace to aerial acrobats, all of the British birds were captured in mid-flight using slow, medium format with a Hasselblad camera – the very camera that was first manufactured by devoted birdwatcher Victor Hasselblad in the 1960s, to optimise his bird photography endeavours. This technique meant that only one shot could be taken at each fleeting opportunity, but ensured the resulting images could be produced at a breathtaking scale while revealing the intricate details of each subject.
"There's no doubt that the pandemic has forced us to adopt a much slower pace of life," Harvey tells us. "Having lived in Norfolk on and off for over 20 years now, I took the opportunity during the spring to spend more time immersed in the wild, whilst appreciating the nature that is on my doorstep. Being more closely connected with nature certainly brings a great sense of calm and the closer I looked, the more beauty I saw in these refined animals."
All of the prints will be released for sale on Tuesday 20 October in a rare edition of only 15 prints per subject with a range of print sizes. They can be ordered via www.mark-harvey.com.