Paul Gallagher • High Plains: Ghosts of the Past

The open vastness of Montana and the Dakotas was a call for Paul Gallagher. Here he tells us what he learned from these blank landscapes, local communities and harsh winters

I am not often known for including manmade structures in my photographs and I could be considered guilty of their determined exclusion most of the time. The reason for this is, to me, I find them distracting in what I am trying to say with a photograph, which is often my appreciation of the landscape. The inclusion of manmade structures such as buildings seems to draw attention away from this and, in part, the hand of man commands recognition once again.

This changed when I made my first trip to the High Plains of Montana and the Dakotas in the USA recently. Strangely, I have been somewhat fascinated by the open, flat vastness nestling beneath huge skies for many years. For a photographer that is dizzy with inspiration beneath mountain spires, lakes and at the coast, this place could not be further from the norm for me. Along with the landscape, the remains of times long ago also had me returning to the pages of many books again and again to gain an appreciation of why this was. Where and why ...

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About Author


Paul Gallagher has been a professional landscape photographer for over 30 years and is also regarded as a Master Printer dedicating his photography to Northern England, the Scottish Highlands and further afield around the world.

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