Wild, Ancient, Hidden, Gorgeous IRELAND - A Photographic Journey with Joel Simpson

Monday, March 12, 2018 @ 6:30 pm

Woodbrige Main Library - Ground Floor Meeting Room

Ireland, both the Republic and Northern Ireland, exudes authenticity: its landscape, alternately lush and stark; its prehistoric, ancient and Medieval sites; its small towns and villages; the rich geology of its breathtaking, rugged coastlines and interior wonders; its “haunted” ruins; its spectacular flora—and its reassuring lack of commercialism. You'll see the same scenes today that inspired early 19th Century plein air painters from all over Europe: the same towns with overgrown riverbanks, the ruins of castles, abbeys and churches, the cows and sheep in the fields, the narrow, winding roads flanked by stone walls  and covered with hanging wild flowering plants or bowering trees.
 
The weather is famously changing, making for interesting skies, with intermittent rain and sun during the course of a day.
 
Photographer Joel Simpson drove around the whole island in two different rental cars, seeing both well-known sites and little-known ones, and making discoveries on his own that were not in the guidebooks. He flew his drone many times, coming home with aerial views and movies of ancient sites and spectacular coastlines.
 
You’ll see all this and more in his 90-minute slide show. Ireland is an easy country to visit (although sometimes the roads get very narrow.) He'll also talk about important practicalities, itineraries, and things to watch out for, including how to do it on your own and how to do it on a budget. In addition he'll give some photographic advice. Questions are, as always, very welcome.
 
New Jersey native, Joel Simpson, has been photographing since he was a teenager in the 1960s. In addition to being a 35mm amateur for most of his life, he gained a doctorate in comparative literature from Brown; taught college English, French and Italian; pursued jazz piano for 22 years and created prize-winning multi-media music software that sold worldwide. 
 
An inveterate traveler, Simpson has lived in France, Italy, and Germany. He combines an artist's eye with the curiosity of an amateur scientist, history buff and anthropologist.