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RICHARD DAUGHERTY (article first published : 2003-04-2)

The works of Durban-born photographer Richard Daugherty are on show at the Elizabeth Gordon Gallery until April 5.

Born in Durban in 1963 and educated at Clifton and Michaelhouse where his love for nature developed and was nurtured, Richard Daugherty completed a Bachelor of Building Science degree at the University of Natal.

After that he spent years in the construction and property development business in South Africa before the wide open spaces of the bush drew him to the Okavango Delta in Botswana. Here his love for photography developed and he was able to build up a library of images whilst working in various camps and lodges in the bush.

A particularly enriching period was spent with a herd of 12 elephants at Elephant Back Safaris which gave a great insight into their individual personalities and also the vagaries of the herd. His times spent as a specialist guide enabled an incredible range of experiences and knowledge of many areas and their game as he frequented them repeatedly during different seasons over the past few years.

The idea of photography as an art form rather than a medium to merely capture an image has long affected Richard’s attitude and personal style. Black and white photography, in particular, emphasises the tonal qualities possible and often highlights the texture and form of an image.

Richard believes that how each person “sees” is the answer to how an image is captured, the reflex between seeing and pressing the button. This cannot be taught. Inevitably, all shots are about depth, shadow, light, texture and above all else formulating completeness within the image. It is not only the initial capturing of the image that is important but also the final reproduction on paper. Thus Dennis da Silva of Silvertone in Gauteng was chosen as the printer due to his great skill and ability to “print from the soul”, as he would say.

These 30 images were originally chosen for an exhibition in America, therefore they cover a range of people, landscapes and animals. Richard has just returned from Australia where these images were very well received and the exhibition was a great success.

It has taken a long time for photography to be accepted as an art form. Richard Daugherty has a passion for what he does, creating wonderful images through the lens of his camera.

Elizabeth Gordon Gallery is now housed in a beautiful old colonial building in Florida Road.




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