I’m still taking pictures for myself, so if it looks good on my wall, hopefully it will look good on someone else’s
You won’t find many wildlife images in the rarified area of fine art photography, but David Lloyd has found a way to make it pay. He tells Keith Wilson how he switched from graphic design to photography
A career as a graphic designer in the advertising industry wasn’t enough to satisfy David Lloyd’s creative instincts.
Photography was always a big interest too, something nurtured when he was a boy growing up in New Zealand by his father, a keen amateur. A subscription to National Geographic introduced David to the work of Frans Lanting, Jim Brandenburg and Michael Nichols. His transformation into a fine art wildlife photographer was only a matter of time… How has your graphic design experience influenced the way you photograph? It’s nothing to do with training, it’s just down to my own tastes, and I like to keep things really simple. If I were to design something I would have one typeface on one side, one style, one size, and wouldn’t be afraid of white space. Just keep things simple with straight lines and strong shapes. It was never a deliberate thing to go for; it’s just what I favoured. That’s come through subconsciously to my photography. Some years ago someone was looking through my pictures on Flickr and that person pointed it out to me. He said, ‘I like your pictures because of the simple strong lines and shapes’. It hadn’t occurred to me.
What triggered your interest in wildlife? There was a magazine that came out years ago, one of those weekly magazines that built up like an encyclopaedia. You bought the binders, but very rarely did anyone get the full set, but I did! Everyone has an interest and wildlife was one of mine. You cite Brandenburg, Nichols and Lanting as major influences. Those three names keep coming up for many photographers. Why is that you think? They were all active around the same time when I was at an impressionable age. You see, I saw them always in National
Geographic. They were always featured in those. I had a National Geographic special with all of Brandenburg’s wolves in it and I’ve lost it, which is annoying.