Having the honour to display many of his images within Kinetic Six’s office we would like to share with you a bit more about the meaning of this project and the man behind the photographs.
After spending 22 years in the British army, Dave Mackay decided that it was time to take his life in a very different direction. He had always been a keen photographer collecting images from his time in the army as well as ordinary life. With an evident passion for photography he attended the University of South Wales, full time, as a mature student. He graduated in 2016 with a 1st class honours degree in Photography for Fashion and Advertising. But this was only the start of his career!
He has always utilised film cameras within his work and challenges the perception through his beautiful work that film images are of poor quality. The reason behind choosing film is due to the authenticity and physicality of negatives created by using film cameras, as well as the scope created for production of extremely large prints. For the Bigger Picture project he used a mix of formats to suit the environment and subjects. When time allowed the slow deliberate method of photographing people with a single sheet of film worked. Conversely, creating images of baby elephants required a more responsive digital approach to achieve the desired outcome. The project was centered on people so most of the work was portraiture. Only a limited number were chosen for exhibition. Difficult to choose but the ones you see were picked to emphasise the connection between the subject and the photographer. That in turn gives a real sense of what these people are all about.
His trip to Zambia in 2017 as part of the project ‘The Bigger Picture’ resulted in images such as ‘Imminent’, ‘Mature Beyond Years’ as well as the beauty of the ‘Ordinary Man’. His images illustrate both the realities of life as a ranger as well as the lives of the wildlife in the Zambian parks. This fantastic project gives 50% of the sales of these photographs to Game Rangers International. The project aims to raise £40k and any money raised goes towards anti-poaching units across parks in Zambia, with the main goal of protecting the wildlife and aiding the rangers.
Kinetic Six is proud to be displaying all of Dave Mackay’s exhibition images from ‘The Bigger Picture’ collection. Kinetic Six is supportive of the goal of this project which ties in closely to the work we have and are currently doing. The images from the collection are online and on sale as framed first editions and smaller limited edition prints. Links to the images on his own web page as well as the project website are listed below, be sure to have a look.
By Katherine Trantor, York University