Back to Basics in St. Bess

I spent the past weekend re-discovering the parish of St. Elizabeth on Jamaica’s south-west coast. It has been nearly ten years since I have explored this very scenic and laid-back part of Jamaica and that weekend we took a much-needed family vacation. Our base was Jake’s Hotel and I was able to introduce the family to Y.S. Falls, Black River, Great Bay and Lover’s Leap. However, for me the most important time spent photographically was sunrise at Calabash Bay on the Sunday morning. It was important because it helped me to re-focus my photography and recapture my passion.

Sunrise over the raised coral reefs at Calabash Bay, St. Elizabeth

Over the past few years, I have not been doing much personal photography. This was due to not having enough time to dedicate on myself and my original passion – outdoor photography. This has had a negative affect on me, so much so that earlier this year my nutritionist told me that I must shoot at least once a week to reduce my stress levels!

Sunrise at Treasure Beach, en route to Calabash Bay.

Decades ago, I used to combine my photography with my love for geography and the conservation of Jamaica’s unique natural heritage. Hiking and exploration was the norm, but due to the demands of teaching and researching, I haven’t done much recently.

Chilling on a sand dune

However, while staring out at the Caribbean Sea (I’ve always loved the sea) as I was warmed by the morning sun, I received a revelation. For the past year I’ve been trying to figure out how to use my research to educate Jamaicans of our natural and cultural heritage. That Sunday morning, it hit me. For my research, I’ll focus on educating Jamaicans about our cultural heritage while for my personal shooting I’ll get back out and explore and hike in Jamaica’s wild places. This will re-ignite my photography, reduce my stress and help to restore my balance. I’ll be sharing the stories on my blog, so watch this space….

Beach house on Calabash Bay, St. Elizabeth.