Rod was born and raised in Sydney, Australia. During his teenage years a series of epic family driving trips to Central Australia, the Northern Territory, western Queensland and Western Australia introduced him to the arid inland of the continent. The deserts, their isolated ranges and their mineral riches fueled his curiosity about the Earth and led him to a career as a mineral exploration geologist.
Rod's first encounter with historic Islamic architecture was in Urfa, the reputed birthplace of Abraham in south-eastern Turkey, in 2012. Sensing its invitation, Rod decided to explore this unfamiliar realm via a photographic survey. That inspiration led him to photograph historic sites throughout Persia / Iran in 2014 and 2015 followed by Morocco and Tunisia in 2016 and 2018. The project is continuing and Rod intends to expand his coverage into other regions.
Rod explores historic Islamic architecture from the perspective of formal architectural photography, where the emphasis is on representing the architecture accurately and cleanly, stripping away the usual distractions and distortions imposed by casual photography. Then the architecture itself can be revealed and interpreted.
Rod's intention is to replicate, to the fullest extent possible, the sense of presence and power he feels from the subject, up close, 'feeling, as it were, its breath upon me'.
Rod uses the classic tools of architectural photography: a monorail camera capable of large parallel shifts and lenses with extra-large image circles. These tools enable him to image nearby buildings without pointing the camera upwards, eliminating the convergence and tilting common to most images of architecture made at close range.
Travelling independently and gaining access into restricted sites with a substantial tripod, a bulky camera and sheet film presents many challenges. The lasting rewards, however, are undistorted, quietly elegant and richly detailed portraits of some of the world's most amazing architecture.
Rod hopes that his photographs might encourage conversation and respect between cultures.
Enquiries regarding licensing of images or purchase of prints made to archival standards are most welcome. Contact Rod at [email protected]