I have been taking photographs since childhood and my first SLR was a Pentax K1000, bought by my grandmother in 1980. I write ‘bought by my grandmother’ but what I mean is that she let me keep the proceeds from the sale at auction of a mechanical toy I had found in my her loft. The tin toy I found was ‘Ajax the acrobat’ which was made by Lehmann bros. about 1900. Its arms held clubs which when the key was wound pounded up and down as it walked. The toy sold for £120 at Phillips the auctioneers in London. I think the Pentax was approximately £100 in Boots at the time. I later bought an enlarger from a junk store and then developing equipment and materials to “wet” process black and white photographs. Developing, enlarging and printing seems a magical art seldom practised today. I created a darkroom in a downstairs toilet at my parents’ home. The chemical splashes on the carpet did not endear me to my mother but I soon placated her with an array of clothes pegged photos on a make shift line gently dripping into our bath. I took pictures of our much loved cats and our resident grandmother. Soon after I bought my first camera I was fortunate enough to go to Algeria and across the Sahara desert. I sent pictures back to my local newspaper in Uxbridge which were published.
My current published pictures are through a stock library ‘Alamy’ which has a live News feed to distribute photos to magazines and newspapers around the world. My photographs have appeared in national newspapers, magazines, websites and textbooks. Alamy have very kindly got me accreditation to take photos at The Man Booker Literary prize (3 times) and various political events such as The Fabians conference with Labour, CPS events with the Conservatives. I have also taken awards ceremonies such as The Howard League (twice) and RSA talks. I attend literary festivals such as Hay on Wye, Cheltenham, Oxford and Brighton and enjoy taking photos of the novelists that I meet. Often I have read their books too.
My first digital SLR was a Nikon D70 then D200, D7000 and D700 FX. With all these cameras I have taken pictures that have made sales into various newspapers and magazines.
The current line up of lenses that I use are: 50mm, 105mm, 14-24mm, 24-70mm, 70-200mm Nikon lenses.
As you can see from my pictures I have interests in Culture and politics. I especially like novelists, poets and a range of actors. In politics I am interested by people who have shaped our futures or wish to do so. Perhaps a camera can capture this in their faces and gestures. I love photo-journalism and there are many photo-journalists that I admire such as Jane Bown who worked for The Observer. Her photo of Samuel Beckett, the playwright is my favourite of hers.
I hope you like the photographs that I have taken as they represent places I have travelled to in the Uk and abroad and of course what is happening on my door step in London today. The Algerian pictures may appear as scans some time in the future when I have time to repair the original slides.