This summer will see the beauty, mysteries and restorative benefits of woodland celebrated through a major exhibition of work by two photographers at the Inspired by… gallery in Danby Lodge as part of the North York Moors National Park’s 70th anniversary.

Photographers Simon Baxter and Joe Cornish have joined forces for the first time to exhibit a selection of their images, representing six years of photographing trees in the National Park, for the exhibition A Woodland Sanctuary, which begins on July 16 and runs until September 10.

Visitors will see how the photographers have focused their lenses according to various themes. These include chaos which reflects the reality of woodland, and dark matter which echoes the more melancholy, destructive elements within a forest setting such as native trees being crowded out by invasive, non-native species.

The gallery will also be displaying 70 special edition unframed small works as part of the National Park’s platinum anniversary. 

Baxter said: “Discovering the therapeutic benefits of exploring and photographing local woodland has been a profound and life-changing experience. The North York Moors are home to some beautiful pockets of woodland, each of them offering a sense of mystery, wonder, and stories waiting to be told.

“Making sense of visual complexity, soaking up the atmosphere, breathing in the smells, and admiring the wildlife is both deeply immersive and restorative. I hope that visitors to our exhibition will get a sense of our privileged experiences in woodland and the joy of spending creative time with trees.”

Cornish added: “People find their own message and meaning when they view pictures in an exhibition, but it isn’t hard to relate to trees. As well as being a natural shelter, woodland has an inner world that feeds our imagination. Every tree is unique yet there’s a community of connection between trees that has so much to teach us.

“It’s a privilege to explore the woodland in the North York Moors, and to share the artistic and photographic joy of being among trees on our back doorstep.”

By Phil Pearson


For more information and booking details for A Woodland Sanctuary, see