The Norfolk Photo Zine

Caught by the Tide is a Norfolk photo zine that features nineteen images from a 2016 visit to the English county of Norfolk. That year a tsunami of personal events happened over a period of weeks and months that drastically changed the lives of myself, my sister and my father.

Darker Tone

lost shoe at Burnham Overy Staithe - image from the norfolk photo zine 'caught by the tide'.
Lost Shoe – Burnham Overy Staithe

The year started normally but within a few months had developed an increasingly darker tone. My mother’s health over the years had varied somewhat but in July 2016 the family received the news we had been dreading. My mum had cancer and it was at stage IV. She had just months to live.

Over the summer there were treatment and setbacks. In the end, my mother was just too weak physically to take any further chemotherapy treatment. It was at this point that the decision was made to have one final family holiday with my mum in Norfolk.

The zine’s title ‘Caught by the Tide‘ reflects that feeling of being swept along with no control or influence over events. You become just a spectator along for the ride.

The Photography

The images were taken using an iPhone 4s with the photographs processed using the Hipstamatic app. All the images have come straight from the camera with no further post-production work added. The locations photographed in Norfolk were Cromer, Burnham Overy Staithe, Hunstanton, Tatterford and Sandringham.

I wanted a less gritty look to these images so the Hipstamatic filter was adjusted from a previous setting used for Sea, Sand, Sky and Street. Adding a warmer tone to the filter and removing the lo-fi lens and film settings improved image clarity.

Favourite Photograph

My favourite photograph is of the lost shoe at Burnham Overy Staithe. At the start of a long walk through to the beach, I came across the shoe. The two people in the background were completely oblivious to the photograph being taken.

A colour version of the photograph taken with my Nikon, however, I much prefer the square format version. The couple in the background reading their map add that extra special element to the photograph. Just a shame I hadn’t been carrying my SQAi.


Two words come to mind when I look through the photographs. Escape and absence.

Taking the photographs was all about escaping. Getting away, even just briefly, from the heartbreaking situation facing the family. Often it was just getting in the car and go! Escape was essential to keep going. The emotional battering was at times overwhelming. Even now it is still tough to process everything that happened. I think it’ll probably take a lifetime.

Cromer pier - image from the norfolk photo zine 'caught by the tide'.
Cromer Pier

Photography is very therapeutic. Getting out with a camera delivered a brief but valuable respite from the tragic family events playing out at that time. The concentration required when searching for and creating images is a fantastic distraction. Just seeing that everyday life is still going on is somehow quite comforting.


The second word that comes to mind with these images is absence. As I looked through the photos for the zine, absence comes across as a core theme with the photographs. From the lone running shoe at Burnham Overy Staithe to the empty glasses on a table at Cromer Pier, something or someone is missing.

Returning to a familiar location during times of turmoil alters your perception of them. I believe that comes across in the Caught by the Tide photographs especially if they are compared with the Norfolk images shot in 2011 for the Sea, Sand Sky and Street Book.

Is that absence there because places adapt and alter slowly over the passing years, or because our own view of the world changes as we grow older and face life’s dilemmas? Maybe it’s a little of both.

Nineteen Images

The premium quality photography magazine features 24 pages with a total of nineteen images. Premium Magazines have a high-end magazine finish with a heavier cover.

In many respects, the zine is the final part of the 2011 ‘Sea, Sky, Sand and Street‘ book. While the first book celebrated the British seaside holiday experience, Caught by the Tide has a more subdued haunting feel to it. It’s about the memories of past holidays. It’s about change going on around us.

The Norfolk photo zine is the final photography book to use images shot using the Hipstamatic app. That process started in 2009, reached its zenith in 2011 and finally reached a conclusion in 2016 with Caught by the Tide.

Dedicated to…

Caught by the Tide is dedicated to my Mum – Enid M Flint 1947-2016.

Purchase via Blurb

Caught by the Tide
Premium Photo Magazine (UK
  • 19 images
  • 24 pages
  • Size US Letter, 8.5×11 in, 22×28 cm
  • 118 gsm Matt text paper
Caught by the Tide
Premium Photo Magazine (USA)
  • 19 images
  • 24 pages
  • Size US Letter, 8.5×11 in, 22×28 cm
  • 118 gsm Matt text paper