Reach for the sky

Charlotte Newton
Charlotte Newton
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At a time of year when Sheffield’s sky comes in many shades but almost all of them are grey, here’s a photographer hoping to bring some colour to the city...

Charlotte Newton has snapped a series of enhanced photos showing some of our most stunning landmarks under bright, bold and – wishful thinking – cloudless tops.

And, as we enter an overcast October, it seems the pics are proving a hit; and not just with folks at home.

“Thailand,” the 29-year-old tells The Diary down a crackling phone line while photographing the wilds of Northumbria. “That’s the most unusual place I’ve sent one. Canada too. And Australia and Japan. They’re popular with expats who want a reminder of Sheffield. It’s lovely to think a piece of the city is hanging on a wall somewhere on the other side of the world.”

Charlotte, a freelance photographer and art teacher of Nether Edge, came up with her sky gimmick while searching for a fresh perspective on the landmarks she loved. Sheffield is such a photographed place I wanted to do something different,” she explains. “I liked the idea of contrasting some of the older buildings with bold backgrounds.”

The skyline image with the red sky has sold the best, she says.

“I don’t know why red is so popular,” she muses. “Maybe it’s something to do with football.” Now, though, Lincoln-born Charlotte wants to expand the series. So she’s asking Sheffielders to email suggestions of places she should snap. “Not the usual city centre places,” she says. “But somewhere a bit different yet equally great to look at. I want as many ideas as possible.”

It’s all a far cry from the first place she picked up a camera: the Rocky Mountains in Canada.

“I lived there a year,” she explains, “and if that landscape doesn’t inspire you to take pictures nothing will.”

She spent a year travelling the world before settling down here. “Obviously I’m biased,” she says. “But I do think this is one of the most beautiful cities to photograph. It’s got some character.” She thinks a second: “Unfortunately,” she adds, “it just doesn’t always have the right sky.”

Charlotte’s work can be viewed at www.photographsbycharlottenewton.com or at the Bird’s Yard arcade in Chapel Walk, city centre.