Photographer To Watch: DANIEL BUSHAWAY

Photographer To Watch: DANIEL BUSHAWAY
Champ Interview & Feature



With a fascinating perspective, Daniel Bushaway’s photographs demand an additional glimpse of consideration. Each are carefully constructed and composed, with an intriguing focus on the industrial influence on nature. Seemingly complex, they capture a moment of contemporary serenity in their environment. With an impeccable eye for detail, his British background influences his view on the Australian landscape where he now resides.

Currently heading skincare company Aesop’s graphic design team, Daniel’s photographic skills showcase the breadth of his talent and personal intrigue for extended interests. Beauty is found within his captured images.

We asked Daniel a few thoughts on his preferred photographic process of large format, and where his main inspiration is found for his fascinating work. He is certainly one to watch, bringing in a new element to Australian photography. These images featured are from his most current work, ‘Control’, exhibited in Melbourne in May, 2013.



Why are you drawn to working in large-format rather than another format, or digital? 

Large-format gives results unlike any other. I am drawn to using large-format for many reasons, one of which is the amount of clarity and detail on the negative. The size of the camera I use is large and heavy which naturally slows down the image making process. I enjoy the precise and methodical approach needed to take just one image. This in turn slows my process down dramatically and enables more detailed research and development. For example, I first scope an upcoming project with a digital camera and start developing narratives, forms and themes within a chosen idea. Then I will revisit the locations multiple times before commencing thefinal expedition with my large-format camera. 

Using only natural light, what are your main constraints, or the benefits of this technique?

Using natural light is very unpredictable. With the planning of each project, weather and light is a huge factor. For example, when shooting in Spain last summer I had a very short window to work in order to avoid the extreme temperatures, most of my images were shot at approximately 8pm. The benefits of using natural light is that your subject is naturally lit, sunlight is the most beautiful light source the results are truly amazing.


The Australian landscape is quite over-saturated and bright, compared to British hues. What differences in colour and landscape composition have you noticed working in these two hemispheres? 

The British landscape is overcast, the light is cooler and the land is much denser. Australia on the other hand is the opposite. Working in these environments is very different, aside from subject matter, weather is the biggest factor. Unless its your desired effect, shooting in direct sunlight is problematic and hard to control. Shooting under overcast skies is easier. For me, there is nothing worse than finding a beautiful location but your shot is dissected by bright, harsh sunlight. I find much of my time is spent shooting off-season during the colder months in Melbourne, this means my exposures are much slower and I have more control with aperture and a flatter light.


How does your graphic design composition influence your photography composition? Is there a visual link to your personal style?

Graphic design has taught me to analyse the landscape and look for uniformity and natural symmetry within my compositions. I wouldn’t say my practise is directly linked to my personal style, but my fastidious and practical nature is definitely reflected in mywork. Each shot has a sense of composure with every angle and element being purposeful and controlled.  


Inspiration can be taken from a person, place or time –  Who are your main influences for your creativity and why?

My influences and catalysts for my creative output are Joseph Muller Brockman, a mid century Swiss graphic designer, who taught meideas of reductionism and simple effective visual communication and Stephen Shore from the New Topographic photography movement which introduced me to the ideas of hybrid landscapes, those with nature and industry combined. My partner has been a huge support and inspiration and whom without you would probably not be reading this interview.