“Shoot! is a documentary project initiated in 2008. It follows a small pheasant and partridge shooting syndicate in Tow Law, County Durham on both work and shoot days. The shooting season (for pheasant) runs from October – February but creates a unique year round social space as members share the cost and labour of preparing for the season. During the closed season this involves ongoing woodland management and rearing game birds for release.
Participants are extremely diverse, and are drawn from rural and urban areas, young and old, men and women, and people from a diverse range of cultural, educational and occupational backgrounds. Whilst the final objective is to try one’s skill in actually shooting ‘sporting’ game birds, the process constructs a much larger social space for male and female sociability, for passing on traditions and sharing country lore and living practices.
The book was created to accompany the exhibition, ‘SHOOT!’ installed at Durham Art Gallery as part of The Social: Encountering Photography, a celebration of photography in North East England.”