Given six months to live, this local man turned to photography – and he’s still going strong 14 years later

Facing a cancer diagnosis and the possibility he only had months to live, Ron Russell turned to photography to get him through.

“I had always had a camera of sorts, but had other expensive hobbies so photography was never that important to me,” he said.

“After having been informed by the medical profession that I had three different cancers over a two year period, my wife let me buy a wee camera to try and keep my head out of the depression that was looming.

“She had been informed that I may just have six months to live, if the kidney cancer could not be controlled.

“That was 14 years ago!”

Fast forward to today, and Ron is continuing to take his photography to new levels.

He had always been quite physical, running, climbing hills and competing with model gliders to an International standard, so when he was advised to start taking life easier he decided to start taking more photos as his son was a keen and successful runner.

“So Highland Games became a useful source of action photos for me

“It allowed me to still be part of sport, if not competing,” he said.

“While winning a bronze medal in a Photographic World Cup event would seem like a great achievement I find that being able to meet, chat and photograph some of my heroes from the track and field arenas means so much more.

He had also joined the Dundee Photographic Society which he said “has been good for me, it rekindled some of my ambitions, plus they have always got great talkers and entertaining evenings”.

“We currently live in Glenrothes but feel the commute to DPS is well worth it.”

Ron and his wife Kate were both accredited photographers at the Athletics Indoor World Champs in Birmingham last month, and today he is exhibiting a number of images from there and other major events alongside nine other Dundee photographers in an exhibition in the Dundee Botanic Gardens.

“They show some of the action from the track and field events,” he said.