While smartphones have given a whole new meaning and dimension to self-portraits, serious photographers think on a grander scale. Elizabeth Gadd is a self-portrait landscape photographer who photographs herself amidst beautiful landscapes. She likes to portray a sense of contrast against a wild backdrop:
“Simply put, I hike out into nature, set up my camera, and I take selfies, but with an artistic spin, an ethereal twist.”
Gadd likes to explore the beautiful highlands of Scotland where she can set her mind free and think creatively. Having been into creative arts from an early age, her love for Mother Nature grew with age. She was simply fascinated with landscapes.
Toward the end of a self-portrait project that she had taken up some 10 years back, she started using nature as her backdrop. She started venturing out to the mountains, getting close to nature. It was then when she realized that adding a human element to nature helped her imagination soar. And instead of taking this project as a task, she decided to give it continuity.
“This was more than just a project, I realized. This is something that I needed to continue doing.”
Gadd uses nature as her source of inspiration. She simply loves to be a part of it and admires every moment she spends with nature, not just with her lens but with her own eyes too.
Taking Self-Portraits With Nature
When preparing for a shoot, Gadd packs light clothes for herself in her camera bag. She usually likes to pack clothes with a variety of contrasting colors so she has some options to choose from at the location.
Once at the location, she scouts around for the perfect spot and sets her composition by either mounting the camera on a tripod or placing it on rocks.
“I certainly find a sense of freedom in the solitude of self-portraiture.”
Gadd feels that for her self-portraiture is a therapeutic experience. The feeling of solitude amidst nature allows her to channel her emotions into her work.
“Then, once I’m in front of the camera, I tend to forget about everything else. It could be snowing, or freezing winds, or hailing, but I sort of just tune out the discomfort and I accept and embrace it all. If anything, it makes me feel more alive.”
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