a photograph of a dragonfly on lichen by Catherine Coulson © 2019 Catherine Coulson


Photography presents the challenge and excitement of trying to capture the astounding intricacy and beauty of nature, focusing on the elements which characterise each place. In ecocentric habitats there is often an interesting contrast between the complexity of visual information and calm atmosphere.

Exploring nature reserves and semi-wild habitats offers constantly shifting subject matter, there is always something new to discover. There is much to consider about the aesthetics of nature; randomness and pattern, impermanence and shifting atmosphere, patina from weather, decay and growth. I like the thought that each picture is a record of all these components coming together in the moment, as well as a response to what we each see and experience.

Having a camera at hand is also useful to record the flora and fauna found in each reserve. There are often unusual species which I want to identify in later research. Watching and photographing wildlife has been an an interest for many years, patience usually delivers some fascinating insights and intrigues into the life of a reserve.

I studied film and photographic arts at university, with a focus on both the practical and ethical considerations of making wildlife documentaries. I enjoyed working for a short time as a researcher in this field, and as a freelance photographer on various projects including conservation breeding programmes and sustainable livelihood development, also gaining general experience in television and film production.

In 2017 my photograph ‘Fire and Ice’ was selected for an onsite exhibition at The Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh. It was taken at the end of November after an unusual drop to freezing temperatures. The dusting of snow settling on the merse (a rare occurrence in the mild climate of the Solway Firth), with the fiery sun setting across the the Rough Firth looking towards Rough Island and Hestan Island, made a great opportunity to capture the unusual contrast. The picture also brings to mind the sensitive and transient nature of saltmarsh (merse) habitat.


Fire and Ice, Rockliffe, Dumfries & Galloway

A selection of mounted prints are available to buy directly from my studio in Kirkcudbright, or please contact me for enquiries. Photographs are taken in nature reserves from across the country and from the locations where I work around South West Scotland.


Please click on photos to view galleries.

Winter, Kennick Burn
A photograph illustrating the wet ravines are ideal habitats for bryophytes, lichens and ferns at Wood of Cree © Catherine Coulson 2018
Wood of Cree
a photograph of emerging snowdrops by Catherine Coulson © 2018 Catherine Coulson
Snowdrop studies
photograph of frogspawn and reeds in a pond by Catherine Coulson © 2020 Catherine Coulson
Frogspawn, field pond
Summer wildflower meadow walk, WWT Caerlaverock

Please note, computer monitors display colours differently depending on settings and the colour of original prints may vary slightly in apperance.