Liscannor resident Kevin L. Smith has created a snapshot of the Cliffs of Moher in book format, having taken a picture of the cliffs each day throughout 2018.
Moving to Clare from Westport in Mayo 10 years ago, Kevin alludes to the feeling of missing out each day as he watched the sun rise and set on the cliff line from the comfort of his kitchen.
An engineer by trade, Kevin’s introduction to the Cliffs came about when he was requested to film his brother, a professional surfer, in a year long project. Since then, Kevin conducts his own video production projects and flies drones commercially for television and film.
“In November 2017, I decided that, come January I would take a picture from the same angle every day just to see how the light changes at the cliffs. Out of curiosity, I wanted to see how many nice sunsets there were in a year. I noticed so many things. In the winter, it sets behind Hags Head and in the summer, behind the Aran islands. It was lovely to see the cliffs and truly take them in,” he said.
Kevin never intended to make a book until two years later, at the start of the first lockdown, where he accumulated additional photos of people surfing, kayaking and the pronounced activity of wildlife on the cliffs from 2018. A real understanding of the beauty of the cliffs began to develop. “The snow in March was ridiculous. The whole cliff was lined with waste-high snow. There was nobody there for two days. It was kind of eerie. There were icicles hanging off the cliff. It was still, silent and surreal. That was the highlight of the year because it was so unique,” he added.
In creating The Daily Cliffs, Kevin collected the photos month by month, compiling his photo journal with different angles. To offer variety, he decided to interview a number of people who were familiar with the cliff and gauge their understanding of what it meant to them. Kevin interviewed Eugene O’ Dwyer, Director of photography for Father Ted.
Eugene spoke about rolling a wheelchair off the cliff with a dummy pretending to be Father Jack, as well as flying a helicopter over the cliff. Kevin also interviewed Luka Bloom. Luka spoke of a nice moment with a friend at the cliffs that ended up in a 10-year relationship. Kevin also spoke to a mixture of locals and guides that have great knowledge of the cliffs, matching up their description to his own imagery, in order to, “Bring the photos to life.”
A percentage of the proceeds generated from The Daily Cliffs will go towards Enable Ireland, which Kevin feels is a nice positive action coming from the book.
“This is for anyone that has an interest in the cliffs or has ever visited. You will be able to relate to the pictures and stories in there. If you can’t get there, this is a great way to have a piece of Ireland with you. Anyone with a connection to the cliffs will find this interesting,” he states.
The Daily Cliffs is available for purchase in Banner Books and The Salmon Bookshop, both in Ennistymon.