Valda Bailey's nature images range from impressionistic scenes of trees in blossom to carefully composed abstract still-life pictures. Despite appearances, Valda doesn't use paint or canvas to produce her works of art, they're almost entirely created in-camera on the Canon EOS R5 with skilful use of multiple exposures and Intentional Camera Movement (ICM).
Valda, who began her artistic career as a painter, has been taking photographs for 15 years. Initially, she worked in street photography, but in 2012, after seeing a picture made by fellow pro Chris Friel using ICM, she realised there was a whole new way of crafting images that she wanted to explore.
"It was like a lightbulb moment, because the images Chris was making had a flat, painterly quality to them," she remembers. "I used to think of landscape photography as calendar-type images – apricot sunsets and milky seas – and although I admired the skill in those images, they just didn't do it for me. From the moment I saw Chris's images, I knew this was something I needed to pursue, figure out and make work for me. I just dived in with both feet."
Since then, Valda has developed an impressive body of work using multiple exposures and the blend modes on her Canon cameras. Her images have been exhibited in galleries across Europe and in the US, and she has published two books: Fragile (2016) and We May As Well Dance (2021). She also teaches her image-making techniques in regular workshops, in collaboration with fellow photographer Doug Chinnery.