Richard Collins

Richard is landscape photographer based in Oxfordshire, England. His work considers the changing relationships between nature and human as manifested in rural and urban landscapes.


Pictures of an alternative countryside

One June morning my wife and I watched from the kitchen window as a juvenile blackbird hopped around the garden. She spotted the only fully ripe strawberry in our garden, one we had been anticipating harvesting for ourselves. After a few tentative, exploratory pecks (presumably it was her first strawberry), she devoured the entire thing with enthusiastic gusto.

There was a moment, just as the blackbird scrutinized the fruit but before she decided to eat it, when we could have opened the back door to frighten her away. It was a moment of ambivalence that is fundamental to discussions around food production and the environment. Because a blackbird that eats strawberries also eats snails, and a human that eats strawberries also eats salad.