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Leave to Remain is an ongoing series narrating a journey littered by mistakes, wrong turns and dead ends. Each individual scene is comprised of snapshots, usually captured hastily and with the technology on hand – a phone camera. These seemingly disparate objects, locations and elements are woven together to illustrate moments of frustration and isolation. Each constructed moment queries the notions of what success is, what failure entails, and explores the fleeting societal construct of ‘national identity’.

However, it’s not all darkness and gloom. Although the protagonist in this journey has grown all too accustomed to a life lost along this meandering path, he is able to adapt his unfamiliar surroundings to provide immediate comfort and convenience – albeit using the same thought processes that likely led to him getting lost in the first place.

Long-term survival is not a consideration.

Leave to Remain is a series of work that explores being lost, but it also serves as a poorly-informed guide to making the most of a bad situation.

Leave to Remain, Episode I


The series of images focus on the questionable decision-making that can send you down the wrong path. These are portraits of disorientation, the backstories of which take their inspiration from ancient cautionary fables. Some of the images follow the storylines of these ancient texts, whilst others are based on newly-created tales. In all of the images, a metaphysical plane exists. These can take a more obvious form, or be implied. Spiritual gateways exist in many world religions. The Shinto Toriis, for example, mark a divide between ‘the mundane and the sacred’.

In these scenes, there is a similar line of demarcation – but it serves to mark a divide between success and failure; the right path or the wrong one. The protagonist occasionally questions his decisions, but there is an overall acceptance of the situation in which he has landed himself.

These episodes were all created during the Covid 19 pandemic, and the elements and characters used reflect this. This series was produced during the strictest of lockdown conditions, where human-to-human interaction was forbidden.

Genius, Virtue & Reputation

The Serpent & His Tail

The Shepherd & the Sea

Laika & Jupiter

The Traveller & Fortune

The Astrologer

Leave to Remain, Episode II


As lockdown restrictions eased, holiday-makers in their caravans flooded my local area. I began to think about what elements these sorts of journeys entailed, and the sort of anxiety that might arise as you packed your belongings into a large metal tube and departed for far-flung destinations. A connection was made between this sort of earthly voyage and space travel.

Both types of journey are, in some way, circular in nature. To return to your point of origin is success. Any other outcome is deemed a failure. The vessels used in both types of trip also share aspirational names: Discovery, Sunseeker, Challenger, Pegasus, Pioneer, Conqueror.

Each image in this series borrows a storyline from a space mission that ended in a crash, a wrong turn resulting in disappearance or, in some cases, an abrupt abandonment. Once lost in the emptiness of space, attempts are made to contact home: a ping from a distant world looking for some sort of guidance. In absence of any sort of helpful reply, questionable decisions are made that recklessly deplete what few supplies and resources are available. Personal entertainment and an acceptable level of personal comfort take precedence over any strategy for long-term survival.

The Circadian Clock

NEAR Shoemaker at Eros

Réseau Plates and Fiducial Markers

Mars Polar Lander at Planum Australe

Philae at Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko

Leave to Remain, Episode III


A human memory, in its clearest form, is a very delicate and short-lived thing. 

A significant imprint is formed, and quickly begins its journey into our past – in its place, a more recent discovery or experience. The cycle repeats. These newer moments affect everything that happened previously. And the further back you go, the more dramatic this influence can be. Older moments begin to degrade, buckling under the ever-increasing weight of new experience. The recollection of our past continually distorts, warps, and details get lost, or mistakenly replaced with previously unassociated material. If a more recent event is significant enough, it can even absorb previous moments to form a blurry, merged and chronologically inaccurate impression of a general period in our personal history.

In many ways, any attempt to map or understand our memories is similar to exploring the universe. Moving just beyond Earth’s atmosphere is shifting back in time. And the further you want to go into the past, the more difficult things will get. 

Celestial bodies formed more recently block our path, distort our view. The tidal forces of gravity can greatly influence the road ahead – forces that break us into smaller pieces before incorporating us into their mass. 

Journeys of a great distance into the past require more fuel to get there. The instruments we can bring to study them get stripped down, simplified. At best, we might be able to collect a blurry impression of our objective.  

This series is constructed of many, often haphazardly captured, phone snapshots. As a new image is taken, it pushes the previous ones into our digital history. The cycle repeats. The images used are from unrelated locations and situations, but are stitched together to illustrate various dangers, difficulties and mysterious phenomena that accompany any journey into the past.

Space is hard. Memory is harder.

Kessler Syndrome

Them’s the Aerobrakes!

Event Horizon

The Goldilocks Zone

Polaris (at the centre of the universe)

Roche Limit