Shortlist Magazine commissioned me to photograph Ed Miliband this month. It involved a day trip on the train to Sheffield and back as well as a visit to Labour HQ for a portrait session. The whole experience was a small but rewarding insight into how a political machine operates in the run up to a general election. Ed was compliant up to a point, but really didn't embrace the experience. The word 'No' cropped up a fair bit when presented with ideas from the magazine and myself. I have talked to another photographer friend of mine who has also photographed him, and my experience wasn't unique. Having said all that, he seemed like a decent man. Please visit 'Portraits' to see another version of this portrait.
One Life Magazine sent me to Sweden to photograph Gunnar Mattsson, who has been to all 194 countries recognised by the UN. Apart from Gunnar, I photographed his family and in particular, Oscar his son. I also met and photographed Arnold Wernersson, Gunnar's travel buddy and co-founder of the 100 Club, created for those who have visited more than 100 countries. I spent quite a bit of time in the archipelago off the coast of Gothenburg and much of it on or in the water. Please have a look at my portraits album for more images.
To launch the new Volvo V60, I was asked to go to Northern Spain, and in particular, the Pyrenees, to photograph three athletes who were to be involved with a mini movie of the car called 'The Descent'. Tom Oehler is regarded as one of the foremost Trial Riders, as is Jean Baptiste-Chandelier in his chosen vocation as a paraglider. Finally, there was Anton Krupicka, an Ultra Runner, whose event involves running 160km per race. All three showed what I guess is paramount when achieving the heights that they have, namely unrelenting passion and enthusiasm for their respective sports.
I began shooting this project almost a year ago. It came about as a result of a conversation with a friend about 'community'. In truth I had already been thinking about photographing some of the people in my town, so this conversation gave me some impetus. The montage you see here, which measures just over 6'x4' will eventually reside in the meeting room of a local business, but before that the work will hang in the Dorking Halls and then spend a month at the local museum. I have also created a dedicated website called The Dorkinians (Portrait of a Community) to show the portraits as well as a number of landscapes and still life images I have made, and an explanation of the concept to add some background to the portraits.
In December 2013 I was asked to fly to Los Angeles to photograph the reveal of the new Volvo XC90 to a group of Los Angelenos who participated in the development of the car. Then, early in 2014, I twice visited Gothenburg to photograph many of the designers and engineers who created the car. The resulting launch magazine was published at the end of August. To see more images please click on Work/Portraits/ or Work/Land & Sea.
Earlier this year I spent a week in Qatar, the worlds richest country, for BA High Life. The brief was to find, interview and photograph storytellers, and to show something of the country they inhabit. The writer Matthew Teller and I spent quite a lot of time in the car, trying to navigate this tiny emirate, often stuck in traffic or waiting for some construction vehicle to do its work. Doha is still under construction. There are some extraordinary buildings going up, with Education City being the highlight for me. This building, designed by I.M.Pei was also a highlight. To see some more images from the shoot, click on the portraits and landscapes galleries.
The Guardian dispatched me to Odettes in Primrose Hill one morning this month to photograph Bryn Williams, the restaurants head chef and owner. The portraits and documentary images were to be included in a feature about Bryn's connection with Wales.
I was commissioned to photograph Jenny, who is executive VP for people at ARM, for the first issue of Work, a magazine that talks to businesses about their most important component, people. The brief was for a simple but beautiful portrait that would be used as a full page. The magazine, which boasts very high production standards landed on my doorstep this morning, and the article used both these portraits, one on the opening spread and one on the turn.
A new magazine called Forever Sports sent me out to Jamaica to shadow Warren Weir for a weekend. Warren is a world class 200m sprinter who won bronze at the London Olympics and silver at the World Championships. He proved an interesting subject, and I found myself being filmed by his friends to a degree I've never experienced before. We watched a football match with him, went to the barbers with him, watched him race and spent Saturday night at a party he threw for his mum. And then spent Sunday trying to get his portrait for the cover and opening spread.
Just published is a feature in the latest customer magazine from Jaguar. I was commissioned to travel from San Francisco to Los Angeles in the XFR-S, a drive that is possible in a day if you begin early enough. With that in mind, the first image was of the car travelling south over this world famous bridge. I had Saturday to reconnoiter the area around the bridge with a view to shooting at dawn on Sunday. The reasoning was that there would be very little traffic, and nobody at the spot I chose to shoot from. At about 5.30am on the Sunday, I arrived at the site to find a stream of people walking, laden with equipment, up the hill to the spot I'd settled on. There must have been at least 50 people there and I found myself vying for a suitable viewpoint amongst people resting cameras on bits of rock, to a guy shooting on 10 x 8 film. And, to top it all, the bridge was full of traffic heading into the city. If you look closely (this was shot for a DPS), you can see the Jaguar on the bridge.
Having spent a big chunk of December 2013 in Los Angeles, I found myself in California in January 2014, and specifically travelling between San Francisco and LA along PCH1 with Jaguar Magazine. We stopped off for lunch at Nepenthe in Big Sur, where we watched the odd whale swim by and as seen here, a Western Scrub Jay grab what they could. I'll be uploading more images from the shoot in due course.
I was asked by Bupa to go to the North West to meet and photograph James who was recovering from a mental disorder with the help of Bupa. James took me to an area near his home that he was very attached to, an area that he had used to help him recover. He told me much about what he had been through, in an eloquent and conversational manner that really drove home what a terrible thing metal illness can be. I wanted to show, in some small way, how he had been inspired by nature to come through his troubled times.
I hope you all enjoyed a particularly fine English summer this year. Over the holiday period I created this new website which is responsive to all devices. Whilst putting the site together, I took the opportunity to reduce the number of images and categories that appeared on the old website. As a result, the new site is easier to navigate and more importantly the images are bigger. If you have a few minutes, please have a look around it.
One of the first new images to grace the site is the B&W portrait of Evie.
In July I went to Gaydon to photograph the paint being applied to the Jaguar Project 7 F-Type, a one-off car that was being sent to The Goodwood Festival of Speed. Painting a car is a fairly complex and time consuming business, with several layers of colour applied before the final coat. I took many images from inside and outside the painting booth and these two gentlemen were happy to help. The shots were to be included in a magazine that Jaguar produced for the festival.
Also in July, People Management Magazine asked me to photograph Steve Varley at the UK headquarters of Ernst & Young in London.
Of the photographs I made on my summer break, the B&W landscape is one of my favourites. It's adjacent to Barricane Beach, near Woolacombe Bay in North Devon.
The September issue of BA High Life features my collaboration with the writer Michael Hodges where we spent a day immersed in the world of high fashion. I spotted this extraordinary 'Mackintosh' at the Burberry show in Kensington Gardens.
During the summer I received a call from a German football magazine called '11 Freunde'. The magazine is aimed at discussing football culture rather than being a statistics, results based magazine, and they were keen to get me involved in a feature they were doing on Mario Gomez, Germanys national striker. He had recently transferred from Bayern Munich to Fiorentina and my brief was to shoot a cover image and spread that illustrated the man and the place. The magazine was particularly keen to get a Tuscan sunset on the cover, so I photographed Mario outside at an amazing hotel overlooking the city. The headline reads " The Eternal Longing for Goals". The cover shot is in the Work/Recent & Published section of this website.
In July I went to the Jaguar plant in Gaydon to photograph the paint being applied to the Jaguar Project 7 F-Type, a one-off car that was being sent to The Goodwood Festival of Speed. Painting a car is a fairly complex and time consuming business, with several layers of colour applied before the final coat. I took many images from inside and outside the painting booth and these two gentlemen were happy to help. The shots were to be included in a magazine that Jaguar produced for the festival.
At the end of April, I was commissioned by British Airways High Life to photograph Bradley Wiggins on a training day in Italy, in preparation for his attempt at the Giro d'Italia. He was looking at, and riding, a time trial section that he had not seen before and the 19km section was virtually all uphill, which gave me the opportunity to hang out the back of a car and get some action shots of Bradley on his beautiful Pinarello. The previous evening, having completed his interview, I talked with him about what I needed from the following mornings photography session and in particular I asked if it was possible to shoot a portrait of him at the end of his practice ride. I felt that there might be an opportunity to get a good shot of him, given that he would have just ridden his bicycle nearly 20km uphill. I had inspected the route and the final location earlier in bright sunshine, but on the day the murk had rolled in and added a grittiness to the scene. Bradley actually got to the top a bit ahead of me, and when I got there he let me photograph him, before disappearing into the mist. The portrait made the cover of this months High Life Magazine. Go to Work/Recently Published or Portraits to see a few more images.
Nick Hancock for The Guardian/Visit England. This is London Road Oatcakes, a popular food stop in Stoke, and a destination that Nick Hancock recommends in a feature for The Guardian and Visit England about his ten favourite places in Staffordshire. The oatcakes that I tried were filled with cheese and bacon and were delicious.