This photo series conveys just how disconnected humans have become from nature.
It’s almost cliche nowadays to bemoan humanity’s disconnect from nature. Photographer Wout Overkamp, however, has employed a unique approach to remind people of their essential and dependent connection to the Earth.
For the series titled No Place Like Home, the artist captured photos of people doing seemingly normal day-to-day tasks in life, but in wilderness-type settings. From a man watching television in the woods to a child playing on their rocking chair in a forest clearing to an individual peering into the fridge for a bite to eat, each photograph sends a powerful message while evoking deep contemplation.
“An ‘x-ray view’, I sometimes call it. We are living in a very comfortable environment — our own house — so everything is at our disposal. We can buy whatever we want … but in the end, we are nothing without the actual Earth.”
“A lot of people, including myself, are sitting a lot behind the computer, and sitting indoors, living in cities,” he adds. “To make these photos you really have to slow down, and make your frame, and direct the scene. It’s just being out there in nature. And whether I go a half an hour of walking into nature for a spot, or a day, all this time in nature makes an inspiration of the series, a way to connect with myself and nature.”
To capture the images, Wout hiked for hours into the woods, usually with nothing more than a flashlight for illumination. Many of the models were recruited from the streets of Groningen, a town in the Netherlands where Overkamp lives.
“This photo series is not saying, ‘You should live this way, this way, this way. It’s not an instruction manual. With this photo series I’d like to subtly encourage people to think about their lifestyle,” explains Wout.
Doug Bierend of Medium beautifully summarizes the purpose of the project:
“These aren’t meant solely as humorous juxtapositions of visual elements, but as reminders. Perhaps it really is strange that many of us can go an entire day without touching soil, or seeing an animal. Our lives are so well sequestered from their earthly context that many of us really do seem to risk forgetting about it entirely.”
Following are some of the photos from the series. Perhaps they will inspire you to re-think your own relationship with nature:
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