United Kingdom-based landscape photographer Charlie Waite wasn’t always a renowned landscape photographer. In fact, Waite tells DPReview that his original dream was to be an actor. While trying to get his name onto marquees, Waite would photograph headshots for his fellow actors.
That all changed one day in the 1970s, when Waite accompanied his wife on a television shoot. While she was working, the soon to be changed photographer wandered off into the tranquil landscapes of Devon, United Kingdom and instantly felt like he had found his calling. “I just found myself responding to the landscape,” Waite tells DPReview.
I felt spiritually enriched. I knew that a deep engagement with the landscape was really good for me, and really elevated me as a person and calmed me. I found that landscape photography leveled me. Fully engaging with my surroundings. A lot of people think that landscape photography has nothing to do with emotions, it’s just craft, and skill, and finding the right light and everything else but it settles me and I’m very enriched by it. I’m more in love with photography now than I ever have been before.
Fast forward 30+ years and Waite is one of the most popular landscape photographers in Europe. Always being inspired by the work of others, he decided to start the UK Landscape Photographer of the Year Award in 2006. It became one of the most prestigious and well-known photo contests in the world, and its success led Waite to create a USA-specific competition. Learn more about the competition and see some of the incredible submissions from this year as well as past winners on the competition website.
Read the full interview with Waite on DPReview, and check out three of last year’s winners, and it’s easy to see why they were selected. Amazing photos by Ted Gore, Grant Ordelheide and Paul Leatherbury.