Mollie Makes Magazine
Nice coverage for Mollie Makes of Shevie Moyles work down in Cornwall...
17 04 13
Wow, its all gone mad now! off to Cornwall for a hotel shoot tomorrow, back to Bath for a hotel shoot on tuesday, then to East Sussex for two days shoots for magazines, then back to Bristol to prepare for four days in Italy... see you on the other side...
20 03 13
Ongoing work with Chateau Impney in Worcestershire see here... and many other jobs too.. Homes and Gardens shoot last week in Devon, and some rather smart new architectural clients based in London this coming week... watch this space!
17 01 13
Well, the year's turned and I'm mooching around in the office trying to reorganise/springclean and generally do nothing! It was a good year (2012) and you can read a review here... At the moment its snowing here in Bristol, so any excuse to discuss 'not snowing' weather would be gratefully received!
15 7 12
Well its 'here we go again' time!... off to Cornwall again shooting for 25BH magazine, then straight back and up the M4 to shoot for a day with Esti Barnes of 'Top Floor Rugs' in London on wednesday. Then another shoot for Route One in the next couple of weeks, and a final shoot for the wonderful National Trust at Powis Castle Gardens ... Blimey...
Category Archives: Lifestyle Photography
Shooting flooring or carpets is a tricky business, because the subject matter is in such a weird position when you think about it! I spent a lot of last summer shooting images for Mandarin Stone, ably assisted by brilliant stylist Louisa (who happens to also be the boss!)… Its quite hard to make the floor look ‘natural’ when shooting from above, and it would be easy to end up with a weird looking picture , full of floor, with a bit of ‘interest’ around the edges. So, we use shift lenses, which enable a normal shooting position (so reducing the weird angles), but a full view of the beauty of the tiling/paving or carpets. Its important to style the ‘other bits’ (cupboards, tables etc), but not too much that it takes your eye off the main event. Louisa is obviously very good at this (she’s had plenty of experience!), and I think our final results looked rather good!
It’s good to get out of one’s comfort zone now and again. So this week I spent a day working with Belle & Boo, which for those of you who aren’t the parents of little people, is a charming and successful children’s brand based around the characters Belle, a little girl and Boo, a rabbit. Think Winnie the Pooh, Beatrix Potter, Enid Blyton, The Velveteen Rabbit, Mabel Lucie Attwell, smock frocks all rolled into one. The shoot involved two little gals, afternoon tea all laid out on proper (tot sized) china, the icing of cup cakes and a toy bunny – as my teenage daughter might say, ‘sweeeeeeeeeet!’. This sort of Lifestyle and product photography requires a light touch and informality so we used natural light mixed with a little fill in flash, and the models were shot quickly and with as little fuss as possible… hope it shows! the company is based in Bristol and the excellent Nicky Owen of White Rabbit Media was stylist supreme…
The coldest easter since I was born, and the wind is biting… but this lady on the beach at Rickham (beneath ‘Gara Rock‘ that I am photographing at the moment) seems to be enjoying herself… some parts of the world are just beautiful, whatever the weather can throw at us! I’ll post further pics of the Gara Rock development once I do them (waiting for some sun!)
Lillian Delevoryas is a wise and wonderful octogenarian artist and just happens to be our neighbour. In exchange for some photography, she offered us one of her paintings. So hard to choose when she has such a prolific output, much of which lines the walls of her flat. There are nudes in various poses, works of religious iconography influenced by her Greek Orthodox faith, vivid interiors and wildly colourful flower paintings one of which we finally ended up selecting. It’s called Hypnos and depicts passion flowers in a pot that was made by Lydia Corbett once a famous ponytailed muse of Picasso and now an artist who Lillian has exhibited with. Surrounded by various pieces of Poole pottery, some dead birds and my favourite Eric Leaper horse which admittedly has a vague My Little Pony feel (!), the painting seems to have settled in nicely. You can see more of Lillian’s work here.
I’ve been hard at work in Worcestershire recently, photographing the recently updated (ongoing!) Chateau Impney Hotel, in Droitwich Spa. A fabulous building, dating from the 1870′s, Chateau Impney was made in to a hotel and exhibition/conference space in the 1970s. The hotel went in to a decline in the late 20th century, but has been revitalised by its new owners. PR and marketing gurus ‘Alias‘ were bought in to help bring the website and marketing in to the modern era, and they called me in to shoot a new set of pics for the website. Now the results are there for all to see, and apparently its already having the desired effect…. There are still areas of the hotel that we need to photograph when they’re done, but you can see from their new site that there have been vast improvements!
Have you forgotten Mother’s Day? why not at least send a free E Card from my website, easy to fill in and send, you can feel better immediately (!)… to be honest, you should have remembered and sent her one of the many beautiful PROPER cards available on the ‘Shop’ page… along with prints and posters for your wall… go on, hurry up and feel better!
I find myself drawn to old magazines particularly interiors’ mags – no surprise there given my job. I pick them up in charity shops or on Ebay if I’ve a few idle moments. Those from the 50s and early 60s are fascinating and I’m always staggered at the amount of black and white features – we’re so used to seeing interior photography in glorious colour. Later ones especially those from the 70s have more resonance as that was when I was brought up – features on how to fill a chest freezer or where best to install a Finnish sauna take me back. The covers – always so important for sales – are especially evocative and I do feel that in many ways things have moved on for the better in some cases! These old Ideal Home magazines are so different photographically too… Check these out and see if you agree…
Great start to the year for interior photography with some lovely pieces being published… Homes and Gardens have just done two of my features, both houses shot in London towards the end of last year… The cover image is part of a feature we did about Lord David Herbert’s house… a lovely townhouse owned by the proprietor of David Seyfried Furniture, who make beautiful upholstered furniture and are based at Chelsea Design Centre…. and the bottom row of images are part of a second feature about a house in North London owned by Mette Hardie… lovely use of Crittall windows….
Both of the above houses were quite different from another recently published piece, all about the wonderful Silvana De Soisson’s house in Wiltshire, covered for Country Living magazine. We spent a great day there, while Silvana cooked lovely Pistachio biscuits and made us coffee… The house is cluttered and eccentric, and I’m sure you’ll agree, a picture-perfect home, cosy and inviting…. Silvana is the brains behind the ‘Foodie Bugle‘, an online food magazine thats fast becoming a ‘must read’ for those who know their pistachios….As you can see, all three houses involved different ways of working…. interior photography can involve lots of styling… taking ‘stuff’ out or adding carefully chosen bits to other shots. A good interior stylist is worth his (actually, more often than not ‘her’!) weight in gold…. In the case of both the Homes and Gardens shoots, Alice Ridley did the honours, whilst Country Living’s own Caroline Reeves styled Silvana’s house…
After spending a lovely new year at Fingals, it’s time to get back to the grindstone, but not before I have a brief look back at the work I did last year. It reall was a mixed bag of assignments, from following NT gardens through the seasons to shooting a top hotel in Tuscany, Il Borro. My work is varied (that’s how I like it!) and I feel as ‘at home’ in a vibrant spring garden as I do in a Midlands ‘Spa Resort’ with four swimming pools and a 5 star chef!
Hotels wise it was a good year, and I shot a range of places, from small ‘bed and breakfast’ businesses (Bolotho Barns for example), to huge, multi-restaurant and spa resorts with hundreds of bedrooms (Hoar Cross Hall). Somewhere in the middle are the small hotel operations, with 10-15 bedrooms, owner operated, and with , more often than not, very good kitchens serving locally sourced food. These are enjoyable jobs as the owners know every room, the staff are their friends and they are able to put their own stamp on the places (Gliffaes Hotel, Boskerris Hotel, Tasty Ski Company). I have often said it but I love shooting these sorts of hotels as I get to do a bit of each of my favourite types of photography – gardens, interiors, food and lifestyle.
It was a busy year too, shooting for my commercial clients: Mandarin Stone are one of my favourites… we shoot lovely houses, finished with wonderful ‘products’, and the client really enjoys, and more importantly, understands the value of careful styling and propping. Another valued client is Top Floor Rugs, with whom I did a fantastic shoot at an amazing house in North London. Again, the client understands the importance of photography and the way that the products are shown (apart from the fact that she is also a world class rug designer!). I also had a good year doing editorial for interiors magazines and shooting major features for Country Living, Homes and Gardens and Saga.
Out into the rarified world of the internationally important garden, and I spent another year shooting, through the seasons, with the National Trust. I worked at three gardens, The Courts, Lacock Abbey and Powis Castle, and spent many happy hours watching the way the gardens changed through the year… frosty views at Powis, early spring shoots at the Courts and fullblown summer borders at Lacock. It’s hard to think of a job I prefer more…
All in all then, an excellent year… even if the weather wasn’t amazing!