Ed Worthington is an artist from Cardiff, Wales currently exhibiting his analogue project called, “It’s Alright Around Here, Isn’t It?” at Ffotogallery Cardiff. The project has been created using a Yashica D and medium format film. Ed shares the story behind the project, why he chose the medium of film for it, and the process of getting accepted into Ffotogallery’s early career artist programme called Ffocws as a wild card entry.

The exhibition is running until the 14th of January featuring twelve artists at the Ffotogallery in Cardiff. Ed tells me the programme selected ten recent graduate-level artists but opened up a call for two wild card entries, which he entered and was selected.

His project “It’s Alright Around Here, Isn’t It?” documents the city of Cardiff and developed into a mission to capture the changes happening in the area while also looking for what he says is, “beauty that can be found in banality”.

local park tree - project image by ed worthington

Image courtesy of Ed Worthington

The work began during the first lockdown in 2020 which Ed says forced him to concentrate on his immediate local environment. During the brief daily exercise allowed, he focused on photographing the area nearby. When restrictions eased, he still found himself wanting to continue the localised work he began.

It just kind of ballooned from there, becoming a little bit of an obsession for me, if I was out and spotted an area that I thought looked interesting, I’d mentally mark it to return at some point with my camera and just go for a wander about – Ed Worthington

Selecting his Yashica D for the task, Ed mentions the reliability of a camera without electronics.

I like the feel of that camera in my hand, it’s one of my favourites in my collection. It’s reliable with no electronics so little can go wrong, not even a light meter, and I just enjoy shooting with it, as well as the fact it’s an interesting object – Ed Worthington

The camera is as much a part of the vision for the project as the work itself. Ed says how the camera choice and medium of film suit the project in that they are both of a traditional or historical nature.

So a lot of the central ideas behind my work is memory and a connection to the past, the whole point of documenting Cardiff as I witness it now so as to show the future what the regular life of the city and the regular places looked like at this time, I find that using a historical object and a traditional photographic medium lends itself well to that. There’s also the fact that each and every image leaves a physical record, whether that be just a negative or a print as well, images that can be discovered in the future. – Ed Worthington

He adds afterward, “Sure…I could shoot digitally and print off a computer but I hate spending forever in front of a screen and prefer to be out shooting. Plus I spend all day in my day job staring at a laptop and don’t want to be doing the same in my own time.”

person sitting on bench - project image by ed worthington

Image courtesy of Ed Worthington

person sitting on bench - project image by ed worthington

Image courtesy of Ed Worthington

Initially, he created a zine for the project six months into it that was shown as part of the interview process for the exhibition. Now that the work has grown since then with over 900 images, there is an idea of a book, but this is still in process. Ed says his ultimate goal would be to have a publisher interested in creating a proper coffee table book for the project, so watch this space!

local building - project image by ed worthington

Image courtesy of Ed Worthington

local cat - project image by ed worthington

Image courtesy of Ed Worthington

local neighborhood - project image by ed worthington

Image courtesy of Ed Worthington

The exhibition experience was smooth for the artist. He says Ffotogallery made it easy by taking care of the printing, framing, and mounting of the work.

He says, “This is the first time I’ve ever exhibited in what I’d call ” a real gallery setting” and certainly the first time I’ve been asked to speak about my work in such a way. I’ve even given a short lecture to a class of photography students who visited the gallery one day as I was available to talk at short notice.”

Ed Worthington Portrait

Image courtesy of Ed Worthington

To hear Ed speak about the work online, Ffotogallery has made a recording available for listening here.

You can also see more about the project on Ed’s website here. If you are in Cardiff before January 14, head on over to Ffotogallery Wednesday through Saturday 12-5pm to see the exhibition!

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