Published Photo
19th May 2016
Here is an unusual way to get exposure for an image, I was looking through Facebook and noticed a photo promoting a competition for the Society of International Commercial and Industrial Photographers and thought that is exactly like one of my images, have they copied it ??
When I clicked on the link I realised they are a sister society of the Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers of which I am a member and entered this image into one of their competitions, I hope it did well can't remember, but someone obviously liked it :)
Avant Garde Photoshoot
19th May 2016
I have admired the work of makeup artist Anna Czarniecka for a long time for her creative input to images, Anna is a special effects wizard but the reason I want to work with her is she is also brilliant at producing beautiful avant garde images, really excited to have finally arranged a shoot with her next week. The model we are working with is an up and coming model, Claudia Michon, Anna has worked with her once before and she comes highly recommended, another reason to look forward to next week's shoot. I have hired a space and will be using My Yongnuo off camera strobes with soft boxes. See gallery for images.

Hollywood Glamour Shoot
03rd May 2016
A great Hollywood inspired shoot with Stacie Smith.

Ragged Victorians
25th April 2016
Went to photograph The Rugged Victorians (the great unwashed) at Rufford Abbey, Nottingham yesterday, they are a 'living history' group and were willing to pose for photos all day long, many thanks you are a great bunch.

Unwashed website
Maria Ramos Shoot
12th March 2016
I blogged a few days ago I was going to a photoshoot with the Developing Creatives Group at Opus Studio in Bradford and went along to it yesterday, it was a great day the model was the fabulous Maria Ramos she has her own unique look and is very photogenic. Eight photographers turned up, some were on the first group meeting a few months ago, a great bunch of guys. A special mention to Clinton Lofthouse runs the group, thanks for organising.

Marilyn Shoot with Chloe Alannah
27th February 2016
Last Saturday I attended a Marilyn Monroe themed shoot at Mainshoot Studio in Brighouse with model Chloe Alannah organised by Ian Marshall and had a really enjoyable and productive day.
There were two sessions of 2.5 hours each so Chloe did a 5 hours shift without a break! I was there for the second session and even after 5 hours of pulling a model face and twisting into uncomfortable positions Chloe was brilliant right to the end. As usual I like to bring along a few props along, didn't get chance to use them all but managed to get some great shots especially the Hollywood one light set up with snood against a black background worked really well providing atmosphere to the images.
I think Chloe will be booked again soon, highly recommended.
Dee Delahunty Shoot
20th February 2016
Very enjoyable day at Mainshoot Studio in Brighouse with Dee Delahunty, a great model very professional but friendly at the same time, highly recommended.

Zoe Harlotta Photoshoot
23rd January 2016
I had photographed Zoe before at Millwood Studio in Stalybridge, so when a friend of mine, Ian Marshall, who runs Mainshoot Studio in Brighouse, organised a shoot with her, I was keen to take part.
An enjoyable shoot and we came away with some great images.

Thanks Ian, looking forward to our next shoot with Dee Delahunty on 20th February.

Cinderella Bridal Themed Photoshoot
15th January 2016
You will remember in my last blog I described a fabulous day out with Damian McKillicuddy, Olympus UK's Head Photography Trainer, at Manchester's Victorian Swimming Baths so immediately booked on his next training course at a stately home near Liverpool.

Baroque and Roll - Shoot at Manchester
28th October 2015
The Victorian Swimming Baths at Manchester is a wonderful place, a fine example of Victorian architecture, I had visited before to look around and loved the place so when I discovered Damian McKillicuddy had arranged a shoot there entitled 'Baroque and Roll' based on Marie Antoinette with attitude, then add a watery slant to fit the environment, I signed up immediately. Damian is a very experienced photography trainer and is Head Photographer for Olympus UK.
Two professional models in specially made costumes and headdresses did a brilliant job both modelling and enduring the cold in the unheated building.
These training courses / photoshoots with Damian are an ideal way to learn from the best and come away with guaranteed killer images. I signed up to the next one straight away. See Cinderella Bridal themed shoot.

Shoot at Thornton Abbey with Liv Free
24th October 2015
Another model who's work I have always admired is Alivya V Free (Liv).
Liv is based in Lincoln and as she lives quite a way from me I arranged a shoot nearer to where she lives, after some research I settled on the fabulous Thornton Abbey Gatehouse at Thornton Curtis in Lincolnshire, an English Heritage property which makes a small entrance charge if you are not a member.

Liv is the complete package, a model, hairdresser, makeup artist and headdress designer / creator, if that is not enough her sister designs and makes period dresses.

The gatehouse is a fabulous building in very good condition with roof and windows, even heating, unlike the abbey nearby which is a virtual ruin.

Liv was able to provide 2 costumes with headdresses she had made, both were brilliant, had a great time with an accomplished model, time flew and after 2 hours we hadn't quite finished so over-run closing time by 15 minutes which didn't go down well with the Site Manager, but at least I got the shots I wanted !


Medieval Queen Shoot
19th August 2015
I have admired Lilly Von Pink's work for some time and finally decided to arrange a shoot with her at Lever Castle in Lancashire, a great place for location photography, it isn't staffed and its free !

The theme was 'medieval queen' Lilly had the robes and would design and create her own headdress. There is no roof on the ruined castle so we were fortunate it didn't rain. The castle has numerous arches in excellent condition as you will see from my images.
Had a really productive shoot, Lilly is a true professional and didn't need any direction, she went through her poses like clockwork, knew exactly what was required, highly recommended.
See other images in gallery.

The Reluctant Mechanic Shoot
06th August 2015
There is a wonderful vintage car sales and repairs garage / museum not far from where I live at Hepworth, near Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, with the unlikely name of The Carding Shed as it is based in an old woollen mill. I had the idea that I wanted to shoot there and the owner kindly allowed me a couple of hours when it was closed to the public. Now I needed a subject and after seeing Pip Atkins profile on Facebook I knew he would be ideal for The Reluctant Mechanic.
I sourced a couple of props, a girlie mag and calendar from the 50's and arranged a shoot date with Pip.
Had a brilliant shoot Pip was really friendly and a great model, where else can you find a 50 year old male model with such style, experience, not to mention a fabulous beard and curled up moustache.
See other images in gallery.

Speedlite Workshop
20th May 2015
Last Sunday I attended a full day speedlite workshop at Millfield Studio in Stalybridge, Cheshire. Presented by Andrew Appleton the morning was classroom based and after lunch we put into practice what we should have learned in the morning!
Using our own cameras and speedlites (on camera) we shot Sharon our model outside under an overcast sky, firstly exposing for the background without flash then adding TTL (through the lens) flash which conveniently on my Canon 5d mk2 uses evaluative metering (not spot / average etc) and treats the speedlight as a fill light which is exactly what was required, reflectors were also used to soften the image.
Indoors we Shot Sharon positioned by a bright floor to ceiling window bouncing the speedlite off a wall to fill shadows. The final setup was in a fairly dark area of the studio using 2 Yongnuo cheap manual speed lights on stands (£31 each post paid on EBay, highly recommended by Andrew) as slaves triggered by our own speedlites on camera to light Sharon's hair, again using reflectors to soften the on-camera flash.
A great hard working day with lots of fun, I learned more in one day about using speedlites than in the last 10 years.
Many thanks to Andrew and our pleasant and very capable model Sharon.
Now busy buying the equipment to put my new skill into practice.
Highly reconmended.
Myths and Legends Bodypainting Shoot
05th April 2015
Many photographers try to create imaginary characters and scenes in their images but yesterday I was introduced to the world of body-painting where real and imaginary characters are painted on the models' bodies.
Millwood Studios in Stalybridge, Cheshire was the venue where unusually the models almost outnumbered the photographers. Painting started early for the 8 models with a 9am start, this is far from a quick process, the 9 photographers were asked to arrive at 3pm, the models were ready to photograph at 4pm and shooting finished at 9pm, a 12 hour day for the artists and models.
The photographers had it easy only working for 6 hours but no one had chance to stop as there was such a variety of myths and legends to photograph including a mermaid, a siren and a wood nymph.
A really enjoyable day in the company of an artistic and friendly group of people.

Whitby Goth Weekend 1st Nov, 2014
06th November 2014
I really should stop going to the WGW, I have been many times and every time I vow I will not go again as the event, photographically, has been 'done to death' pun :)
The reason I continue to go is because I like it and I have never yet been refused a photograph by the characters who are now inundated by photographers, up to 15 of them decending on their 'victims' pun ;)
Let's see what happens next year.
Please have a look at my efforts in my gallery.
Thanks for looking.
24th May 2014

The lady in the wedding dress was part of the Whitby Festival and kindly agreed to pose for me at the entrance to a famous alleyway called Arguments Yard, I don't know if she intended to represent Miss Havisham from Great Expectations but that is certainly who she reminded me of.
On returning home I set about looking through my old images for a fitting room setting and found one of a panelled archway taken at Oakwell Hall in Birstall, West Yorkshire one Christmas, if was perfect for the theme plus I needed an opening for her to put her hand on as in the original alleyway image. The chandelier and table were from a Chatsworth House setting in Derbyshire. It was quite a long job to select the subject and add all the elements together, a lot of manipulation, including reducing the size of her hand (transpose) as it was too large and dominant, I finally applied a yellow tone to the image.In the end it has been worth it as I am pleased with the final outcome.

Whitby Goth Festival
28th April 2014
Went to the Whitby Goth Festival yesterday and whilst driving over the North Yorkshire Moors the fog came down as it quite often does on the Moors and the weather was quite fitting for the festival and Whitby with its association with Dracula. I left the fog behind on the Moors but when I arrived in Whitby it was raining which it did on and off all day. Already there were festival goers walking around the town in some amazing costumes, Goths, Steam Punks and others that didn't fit into any category. The streets were full of photographers also and when one photographer found a subject many others gathered round. I must have asked about ten festival goers if I could photograph them and not one refused, some may look a little intimidating but they are all very polite and obliging even when detained by a stream of photographers. This is my third visit to the festival over the last 15 years and whilst originally most of the participants were in their teens and twenties, today most are a lot older, some in their 60's / 70's with more diverse costumes rather than just gothic. The photographic subject matter is commonplace now but it was still a very enjoyable day and I came away with plenty of images and some not half bad.
Sex and the City
04th April 2014

Finally produced a new image that I am pleased with after a fallow period of 6 months.
The city backdrop started as a colour shot of Manhattan skyscrapers taken from the Staten Island ferry, this was converted to mono in RAW, contrast increased, sharpened and motion blur filter applied in Photoshop.
The businesswoman is a photograph of my daughter, filled with black in Photoshop.
The light source was applied with a soft white brush in Photoshop.
Hope it won't be another 6 months before I produce another !
Edinburgh Fringe
18th August 2013
Had a very long but very enjoyable and rewarding day at the Edinburgh Fringe last Thursday. I went up for the Fringe 2 years ago and got a couple of unusual shots which have won international gold medals so I though it might be worth another try.
The Royal Mile,actually a succession of streets forming the main thoroughfare of Edinburgh, is always jam packed with street theatre which include performance groups, artists, singers, dancers all of whom thrust fliers into you hand to advertise their shows which run night and day for the 3 weeks of the Fringe.
I always try and talk to the performers to build up a relationship and show interest in them before asking to take their photograph and it hardly ever fails and they will pose for you which yields much better results rather that trying long distance telephoto shots.


Tom Gilzean
Tom is 93 years old and has collected for an Edinburgh sick children's charity for the past 11 years, 365 days a year, he has collected £440,000.
He battled long and hard with the Council for a licence to collect money on the Royal Mile and is very well known by the local shopkeepers, he gets a free lunch everyday at an Italian restaurant owned by a Scotsman!
After speaking to him for a while he asked me to put on his bow tie, which I was only too pleased to oblige as it improved his portrait, as he can't manage it himself these days.
Tom collects money from his wheelchair and it would have been difficult to move him in front of a better background so the background was put in later, the cut out of Tom was done using Topaz Remask brilliant software for this purpose. The Stone work behind Tom comes from the Remembrance Memorial in Dewsbury Park.
A really lovely man.

Mendea aka Charlie Chaplin
Mendea is Spanish and has performed in the UK for the past 3 years, after a donation and a chat was willing to do any pose I asked, the shot below he created himself.

Knocking on Heaven's Door
There were a troup of girls dress like this advertising a show and as it happened they were near a church doorway on 'The Mile' so I asked her to stand in front of the door and pretend to knock, being a young girl I thought she would wonder why on Earth I was asking her to do this, but straight away she said to me ' Knocking on Heaven's Door'. Bob Dylan obviously spans many generations, unless there have been more recent cover versions !
Really like this shot.
I am expecting the comment "why is an angel wearing pyjamas" but I have a couple of answers ready:
"Because 75% of people die in their sleep" and
" How do you know, have you ever seen an angel?"
I don't mind the pyjamas as it gives it a more surreal look, rather than the cliché look of a tutu and tights. :)