I have this hopelessly romantic notion that ‘spirit of place’ is a metaphysical reality; that as humans we can be in a place and somehow communicate with our surroundings, allow ourselves to feel the emotion that’s wrapped up in the ‘spiritual energy’ of any given location.

About Within One Mile

‘Pink’, Queen’s Road, Nottingham
Canon A1, Canon FD 50mm f/1.8, Kodak Portra 160, handheld, unfiltered, exposure not recorded.
Within One Mile: ‘Façade’

The 'Within One Mile' Project

‘Within One Mile’ is a celebration of the mundane, a celebration of the everyday: scenes that we would otherwise walk past without giving a second glance, but scenes that punctuate our lives with beautiful hidden visual treasures. From the understated pastel pinks of a frontage destined for demolition to a birthday message sprawled in graffiti to adorn the decaying hull of a wooden boat.

One of my favourite ways of revealing such delicate visual flavourings is to capture them on film. A return to my traditional roots and a celebration of the celluloid epoch, albeit using the best modern emulsions. The glorious understated pastels of Kodak Portra 160 and the gritty soulful silvers of Kodak Tri-X are my current favoured flavours; they’re delicious in the pathos and gravitas they bring to our imagery, just beautiful.

The name ‘Within One Mile’ is a wrapper for a group of projects which share the common theme of all the photographs in any series being made in a restricted geographic area. Within each portfolio, all the images are made within a radius of one mile from a specific place. It could be a large place, like a city, or a linear one, like a road, but ‘Within One Mile’ is all about self-imposed geographical limitations.

Different locations differ in more than just geographical co-ordinates: they each have their own feel, they have a ‘vibe’, an atmosphere, some would even say ‘spirit of place’. It takes time to get to know a place, to imbibe the vibe, to feel a resonance. Restricting subject matter to a limited area allows time for a more intimate conversation, a more authentic representation of a place’s character. Each place is photographed in a different but very deliberate style, typically restricting myself further to use of a single prime lens, camera body and film-stock to achieve a specific image-feel and resonance.

I’m loving the creative process of shooting these images: I hope you enjoy looking at them and that you enjoy my fascination with these filmic styles as much as I do.

Pete Bridgwood, 2017