I started birdwatching at the age of 13 when I first began to wear spectacles and realised that the world was colourful! I bought my first serious camera (a Retina IIC) in 1954 during my National Service in Libya, my first experience of overseas birding, and still have those original Kodachromes. The ISO rating was only 8 and the results were more than a little garish. I am grateful to the Queen for deciding that HM Forces could not do without me!
Marriage, children and climbing the career ladder to become Chairman of the National Haematology Advisory Committee then intervened until a holiday on Lundy Island in 1972 rekindled my interest, both in birds and photography. I became a keen birder and, age and infirmity permitting, still am. During the 1970s and 80s I sold many photographs of rarities I had
seen. Many happy holidays were spent in October on the Isles of Scilly birding with friends and particularly my eldest son Ewan.
My interest intensified and I joined the RPS, gaining an LRPS in 1988 and an ARPS in 1990 in Bird Photography. I still feel privileged that Eric Hosking, who had been responsible for first kindling my interest when he came to lecture at my school during the Second World War, was on the panel.
I have subsequently added DPAGB and AFIAP to my photography qualifications.
Since my retirement my love of birdwatching enabled me for many years to become a part-time leader for Birdfinders, a company led by a long- standing birding friend, Vaughan Ashby, specialising in this field. We have visited many parts of the world together. I enjoy showing people birds and although photography can be difficult under these circumstances it is still possible.
I rarely use a hide, preferring to use field craft to stalk my subjects, particularly in rainforest, this being my favourite destination, although sea birds and islands have also always had a fascination. Dislocating my spine in 1995, surfing in Australia with my eldest grandson, has meant that I can no longer carry heavy camera gear so I have had to adapt to a much more cautious approach. Plus injuries received from a road accident in India in January 2010 mean that I have had to give up leading trips and travelling abroad.
This has also means that I can no longer carry heavy equipment so I have moved away from Canon to the new 4/3rds format. Thus my current equipment is a Panasonic GH3 with various lenses.