Portrait in Sunday World

Sunday World

It’s not often that I get a commission from a tabloid newspaper, but last week I was phoned by the Sunday World to photograph a female nurse who appeared on the Graham Norton TV show. As an audience member, she told a story about how she caught the eye of an attractive man at the gym, but tripped up on her treadmill at a crucial moment as she was establishing eye contact. When I met her in Stratford, I realised that the part of the appeal for the newspaper was merely to splash a picture of a young lady across their pages, so I dutifully obliged by producing an aesthetically pleasing one. Hearing the story before setting off, I took the orange dumbbells which are a large part of the focus.

To see the one I picked for my website, please see my best editorial portraits here.

Portrait commission for Briefing Magazine

I had a sizeable commission from Briefing Magazine to shoot 7 portraits around London and Bristol. They’re all leaders in law firms, so the brief was to have them looking powerful and leader-like, and crucially outside their normal office environments. One of my favourite portrait photographers is Harry Borden, whose pictures I like because they’re quite understated, and he has a great eye for placing people in often unexpected locations. I feel inspiration from his work. With my portraits here, I was given 30minutes+ in order to strike up a little bit of rapport and wander around the immediate vicinity of the subjects’ workplace with them. I’ve often struggled in the past to feel comfortable with city workers, because their jobs seem so different from mine. However I now realise it’s best establish common ground outside the workplace, whether it ‘s about cycling,  London-life or the perils of hair blowing in the wind! I’m happy with these images because as well as having high impact I feel I’ve captured a little of their personalities. Well, all except one who didn’t let his guard down, no matter how hard I tried. (Can you guess which one?).

Photographing an MP

I have photographed many MPs and I enjoy the challenge. The common conception of them being dashing off to meetings and having little spare time is true in my experience. I was nervous ahead of photographing Sadiq Khan, the Shadow Justice Minister, as the Art Editor at the Law Society Gazette phoned me several times to warn me that they were relaunching, and that I needed to come up with some pictures with a killer instinct. It was a profile piece, rather than a chatty or animated on, so luckily the mood suited the required pose. I took my usual brollie, and due to the rain it was being inconsistent and making me convulse in nervous exasperation! Luckily the silver reflector I had lifted the light in his eyes, providing a really intense light (image at top). He was a very patient sitter, and the reporter I asked to assist me with holding duty said she got more copy out of him through casual conversation on Parliament Square than she did during the whole interview.


Portrait of Louise Casey

Louise Casey

Louise Casey

I was commissioned to photograph the woman who is leading the government’s troubled family’s team, Louise Casey. The pictures of her being interviewed came out well due to the light streaming in from the window behind her, and the fact that she was very animated and unconscious.

She said she could talk for hours about what she’s passionate about, to which I replied I could do the same on the subject of photography.
When it came to taking the posed shots for which I had scouted a location earlier, my lens decided to send cryptic messages to my camera, to the tune of error message. I got flustered and took it straight down to the camera doctor soon after, but I’m pleased that I got at least one shot that I’m happy with, particularly the playful nature of the colourful sculpture contrasted with her serious expression.