Oakham photographer's new book tells the terrific tale of Brooke Road
More of us will have noticed the subtle - and not so subtle - changes to where we live over the past 18 months, as we spent more time soaking up our home surroundings.
As life began to bloom again, Oakham based photographer Ady Kerry took it all in while creating a stunning photobook, diarising the landscape along one country road.
Photographing exclusively along Brooke Road, from the beginning of January through to the end of June this year, Ady drew inspiration for the project from renowned artist David Hockney to create his own book - Diary of an English Country Road.
Ady said: “Every day is different. It doesn’t matter where you are, from the countryside to in the city, no day is the same and nothing looks the same. There is always a different picture to be had.
“Nature has always been close to my heart and I had looked at Hockey’s Woldgate series of iPad paintings from 2011 with a view to doing a set of pictures.
“During lockdown we walked along Brooke Road a lot and, as we could see another lockdown coming, I needed something to keep me occupied. That’s how the idea developed.”
Ady has photographed and described a beautiful story of nature at work in a world in which it seemed as though time had stood still, in lockdown.
Ady came across all manner of wildlife along the route, including yellowhammers and owls, and captured the depth of winter, the beauty of spring and the long-awaited arrival of summer. There were, however, moments when the landscape didn’t look quite so picturesque.
Ady said: “The biggest change I saw was when the A6003 was closed for three months. We had a huge increase in traffic and the few people who would walk up it stopped because it became very dangerous.
“It was total chaos and it really changed the persona of the road, which you can see in the photo.
“It’s been something of a labour of love that once or twice I did find difficult to do. There was a couple of weeks where I did struggle to get up there and do what I wanted to do because of the road closure too.”
Ady hopes that the self-published book will help people to look at their surroundings a little more, while appreciating his work.
He said: “As a photographer you are very influential in how you can get a message across that reflects what you want to tell at the time.
“With the photo of the traffic backed up, you would have got a completely different photograph on a different day or even at a different time that day. That’s the power of photography and how you can manipulate what people see.”
“I hope that it does show a progression of nature which we do take for granted.
"I’ve tried to give it a bit of variety by not just shooting trees and tried to make it interesting by drawing in different times of day. Some are shot at midnight, some are shot at 5am.
"It’s very subtle changes that can make a massive difference to the look and feel of a place.
“I really hope it will give people food for thought and to look a bit closer at their environment”
Diary of an English Country Road will be available to buy from Walkers in High Street, Stamford and High Street, Oakham, or contact Ady at firstname.lastname@example.org