‘Craftsman’ Qualification

Falkland Islands

“Massive congratulations to Peter Farrington CrGPwho has been granted Craftsman Status with the Guild of Photographers. To achieve this Peter had the difficult task of selecting 20 images taken by Peter to create a panel of work for submission. Peter also had to have already achieved his Qualified status in order to apply.  The images had to be presented as mounted prints as well as in a digital format. Peter attended and presented his panel of work for consideration by a panel of very experienced Judges who assessed his ‘Photo Essay’ on the Falklands Islands and awarded him with Craftsman status – a superb achievement!!” – Guild of Photographers

FROM WAR COMES BEAUTY

So when I was researching a subject for my Craftsman, I felt I wanted to tell a story as a ‘Photo Essay’ that would spark the imagination whilst bringing to life a true story of good coming out of bad.

I joined the Royal Air Force back in 2001. My favourite aircraft was the classic British Avro Vulcan which was, undoubtedly, one of the reasons we were able to win the Falklands war. That said, this is a War that few people talk about or, for that matter, remember.

I have used the first ten images to show the scars of war, with the other ten depicting the circle of life, the returning wildlife and fantastic night skies. This is why when I had the opportunity to serve in the Falklands, it opened my eyes to the conflict, fantastic wildlife and landscapes down on the Islands 8000 miles away from home.

I have been fortunate enough over my seven tours of the Falkland Islands, each lasting four months, to explore and use my photography to tell the stories that these amazing Islands, also known as the Gateway to Antarctica, have to tell.

It was on a misty morning in 1982 that Argentinian forces first disembarked onto the Falkland Islands. The Islanders first spotted the Argentinians from Pembroke Lighthouse; this was the start of the Falklands War with the UK, which would ultimately take the lives of 649 Argentine soldiers, 255 British soldiers and three islanders.

As you can see from these images, there are many scars left over from the conflict, but now nearly 40 years on, all the land mines have finally been cleared in the last year.

The wildlife is flourishing again, and because of this, the tourist industry is booming, with over 60,000 people visiting the Islands each year on cruise ships to see the wildlife and clear night skies, where you can see the Milky Way with the naked eye.

As a member of the military, I have paid my respects to the many battlefield memorials. I have yomped over the three peaks of the Falklands as the Paras did back in 1982; luckily for me, in much better weather, wearing much better kit, giving you an insight into what they went through during that period walking in their footsteps.

Walking over the top of Mount Tumbledown on the day of Argentina’s surrender on the 14th of June 1982, but years later, seeing what they would have seen, bright coloured rooves and the warm welcome of the Falkland Islanders.

I hope this story created as a ‘Photo Essay’ can be seen through my images; it has been a privilege and honour to present my panel of images to the Guild of Photographers.

I give you the Falkland Islands – From War Comes Beauty.

Peter Farrington CrGP

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