Posts Tagged ‘Chernobyl photos’

Eerie Infrared Photography of Chernobyl Exhibits in Berkshire

Premier of ‘Chernobyl’s Zone of Alienation’, thought-provoking post-nuclear photography by Darren Nisbett, takes place in Eton, Berkshire, throughout July 2011For many people, a photography excursion is about visiting popular tourist attractions and shooting pretty views. Accomplished Berkshire photographer, Darren Nisbett, has turned this concept on its head to produce a hauntingly ghostlike series of infrared works depicting the post-nuclear evacuation zone around the Chernobyl power plant and the battle for dominance between old soviet architecture and new encroaching flora. ‘Chernobyl’s Zone of Alienation’ will be exhibited throughout July 2011 at the Rhubarb and Custard gallery, Eton, Berkshire. The exhibition coincides with the Chernobyl disaster’s 25th anniversary year.“I wanted to capture the overpowering sense of silence, the greys of the concrete and asphalt and the contrast of the increasingly dominant plants and trees.”

An amateur photographer whose digital work spans four years, Darren has twice visited Chernobyl to produce his body of infrared shots. His second visit and the resulting exhibition became particularly poignant in view of the recent natural disaster in Japan and the problems at its crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.

The surreal Chernobyl photos include depictions of abandoned bumper cars, kindergarten beds, train tracks and vast Communist-era buildings, with the infrared techniques creating a spectral feel to the trees, wild plants and pools of toxic moss that are reclaiming the land from its crumbling concrete monoliths.Darren says: “I’ve always been interested in visiting places that are off the beaten track – especially if they’re associated with darker moments in history. For me, photography trips have never been about exotic safaris or the arctic and my overseas travels have included Pompeii and Auschwitz. In the UK, I spend my spare time exploring and photographing abandoned and decaying buildings and castles; I also like our Victorian graveyards for their atmosphere and serenity.”He adds: “At Chernobyl, especially on my second trip, I wanted to capture the overpowering sense of silence, the greys of the concrete and asphalt and the contrast of the increasingly dominant plants and trees. I was interested in the objects and interiors of the buildings, and the lives of the people that were left behind. From a personal point of view, it’s humbling to see the after effects and to meet the people that still work there, despite the risks to their health.”

Darren took the photos with a Canon 450D that has been converted to take infrared images using a 10-22mm wide-angle lens. He also used a Canon 5D Mark II with 17-40mm or 24-105mm lens and Heliopan IR filters. “The infrared filters transform what is seen by the human eye into a dreamlike image,” says Darren. “The processing gives the images the distinct ‘traditional’ feel of high speed infrared film with its characteristic grain, contrast and halation (light leakage). The images for the exhibition are printed using Silver Gelatine to further enhance the film feel.”The resulting images have been picked up by one of the UK’s leading photographic magazines and will be showcased in a multi page spread in its July issue.The exhibition of Darren’s works takes place at the boutique photography gallery, Rhubarb and Custard, 4 High Street, Eton, Berkshire, 01753 676404 , Monday to Saturday, from 11am to 4:30pm during July 2011. Entry is free.The profits of the exhibition will be donated to the Chernobyl Children’s Project (UK) which works with the children of Chernobyl and Belarus to address health problems caused by the nuclear accident.

Story from Professional Photographer Magazine

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