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giles norman is irelands leading black and white landscape photographer.
giles norman lives in kinsale, co.cork with his wife and business partner catherine and their children, jack, ali and louis. born in 1961 to belgian and english parents giles has lived in kinsale since 1976.
while completing his formal schooling, a chance request to photograph a school project provided him with his first real opportunity to use a camera. this experience proved to be a very positive one and in 1979, he received his first camera for his 18th birthday.
by 1981 he had begun creating his first portfolios.quickly developing his own distinctive style of black and white photography giles began to successfully sell his black and white photographs to craft shops around ireland. to support this demand he rented darkroom space in kinsale, where a small window to the street drew a steady stream of visitors. this welcome intrusion convinced him to open his first black and white photography gallery.
by selling work from his earliest portfolios of kinsale, dublin, kerry and west cork, the gallery became successful and gained giles recognition as one of ireland’s leading black and white photographers. going on to add to his collection he returned many times to the west of ireland photographing the aran islands, clare and galway, while also visiting donegal in the north and wicklow in the east. giles made his first trip to paris in 1994, returning again in 1997. in the intervening years he visited venice and florence.this necessitated a move to a larger premises in 1992, which is now home to the complete black and white portfolios of giles norman.
while giles spends much of his time in kinsale he also finds time to add to his portfolios, more recently launched collections include new york, dingle, london and connemara.
why black and white?
Choosing black and white over colour gives a timeless quality to photos and brings elements such as line, texture, and tone to the forefront. The choice of black and white may also help lead the eye away from elements which distract from the photographer’s intended focus.
discover a vanishing ireland through his exceptional photography.
from rugged headlands and windswept oceans to fragile flora and shadowed skies, these images capture the timeless splendour of ireland. dramatic images of the old head of kinsale, waves battering the beaches of dingle intermingling with traditional cottages in donegal and the wild remoteness of the aran islands.
giles’ images of the irish landscape that evoke a purity of vision, mostly stripped of man made intrusion. preferring to keep his pictures ‘real’, he shuns the special effects of modern photography. skeletons of fishing boats, lonely roads, deserted ruins and cobbled streets speak of a life apart from the image, and of our temporary passage. a shaft of light between clouds, a breaking wave, the elegance of a single flower remind showcases the best ireland has to offer. giles’s photos have captured a beauty that few can imagine, what you see is what he saw, and the images are exquisite!