Cailean Maclean Photography

In 1954 Paul Strand spent months in the Hebrides capturing the landscapes and people of South Uist and Benbecula. The book, Tir a’ Mhurain containing nearly 150 images from his time in Uist and a commentary by Basil Davidson was published in 1962. I recall clearly the day a copy, “with the author’s compliments” was delivered by post to our house in Daliburgh, South Uist. For me the book was a bit of a disappointment since all the images were monochrome and had nothing of the luxury and the allure of the full-colour pictures published in the National Geographic and similar periodicals. But over the years I grew to love Tir a’ Mhurain and to regret the battering the complimentary copy was given through careless inspection, and probably neglect, by myself and my brothers. Whether Paul Strand and Tir a’ Mhurain had anything to do with my subsequent interest in photography I know not but I did, as a teenager, experiment with a Kodak Junior 1 and then an Instamatic camera which happened to be in the house. Reasonably encouraged by the results from both I invested, I believe in 1971, £22 in the purchase of a Zenit B, a Soviet-built camera which was one of the cheapest SLRs of the period. Since then I have owned Pentax, Nikon, Mamiya and Fuji cameras and used them in my attempt to become the accomplished photographer I strived to be. From the examples I have presented in the galleries below you can decide if I reached my goal or whether it was all in vain. If it was the latter, in other words a fruitless exercise on my part, then the fact that several publications carry my images, that I teach residential short courses in photography and take individuals on guided photographic walks is nothing short of audacious behaviour. However, if you think you could thole my audacity and would like to explore the photographic delights of the Isle of Skye with me just get in touch. Also, you might want to investigate the short course I run at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig in Skye during August. Scroll down to see examples of my photography