I enjoy talking about photography and visual story-telling with all the complexity this throws up. Here you’ll be able to see my lectures from around the world, media coverage of my documentary photographic work and my published books. 

 

The Yorkshire Post used the story of the exhibition ‘You and Me in HU3’ for the front cover of their weekend magazine with three pages inside. Journalist Daniel Dylan Wray taking the time to discover how George Norris and I have developed the work, what we are trying to achieve with our documentary photography and why, thus avoiding the good old days narrative. Some very nice pictures by Jonathan Gawthorpe too who took the time to have a bit of fun with us shooting portraits.

A nostalgic look at the 1980’s by BBC Look North using our exhibition ‘You and Me in HU3’ as the news peg was a lot of fun. Avoiding frequent downpours reporter Phil Norton and camera operator Joe spent over three hours work to produce the piece into a 3.5 minutes broadcast. Some great ‘then and now’ video work superimposing the views today with the pictures I took in the 1980’s. George providing the in-depth narrative the make the whole item work. If you click on the picture you can see the broadcast.  

For a glimpse into a few of the pages of the book “You and Me in HU3’ by myself and George Norris click on the picture. The book accompanies our exhibition of photographs that opens at the Humber Street Gallery in Hull, February 9, 2024. There are seven stories, Rag bone, Gypsy Childhood, Changing Times, Love Letter to Hull, Peacocks, Kandy de Barry and Star & Garter that spans 40 years of our friendship. The book has 242 pages, measures a mighty 32cm x 32cm and is beautifully designed by Verity Watkins.

As part of the month-long Wanstead Fringe September 2023, I was asked to showcase some of my photographic work and open my chaotic thinking. The event was a complete sell out as I attempted to answer questions that vex me ‘why do I bother documenting local communities' and 'how to better structure the presentation of this work so it’s seen’? It’s not breaking news, or a never seen before niche of society that will shock or delight, nor is it poverty porn. Most importantly it was fun.

The book designed by Verity Watkins of my pictures shot during the street party celebrations to mark the coronation of King Charles III in Hereford Road, London. We hope it serves as a family keepsake of a great day of the community getting together. The road was (just about) empty of vehicles, children enjoyed the safe space, good food and the rain held off. Click on the picture above to see a flick through of the book or here to see all the pictures.

A lecture at the Peterborough Museum & Art Gallery for the sixth form Art students at the Ken Stimpson Community School about my exhibition ‘New Town Youth 1985’. The brief was talk about career and how I got started, my inspirations and artistic influences, composition, light and technical skills. But the hardest question was ‘what did I hope to achieve from the exhibition?

Published alongside my solo exhibition ‘New Town Youth 1985’ was a hard cover book. It was beautifully designed by Verity Watkins. Although the pictures are black and white the print run was full colour to ensure a richness in the tones. It’s now sold out but you can see a flick through the pages by clicking on the picture.

TV Anglia TV News followed up on my exhibition 'New Town Youth 1985' when Andrea Brace got in touch 38 years after I took her picture. It was great to meet up and heart-warming to discover that her passion for theatre has lived on; she now teaches young people drama. I originally photographed Andrea at the Young People’s Theatre Group at Bretton Woods school. By happy coincidence Andrea’s picture is on the cover of the book that was produced to accompany the exhibition. Click on the picture to see the feature.

ITV News Anglia featured my exhibition 'New Town Youth 1985' broadcast the day before the opening. Video journalist Stuart Leithes taking the time to hunt out the exact places I took pictures back in 1985 to create a couple of terrific ' before and afters'. Click on the picture to see the article.

A triple whammy from the BBC as I was interviewed for breakfast, afternoon and evening shows to discuss my exhibition 'New Town Youth 1985'. Click on the different pictures to listen to all three.

Nice to be invited by BSix assignment leader Natasha Cheek to talk to the University of Arts London Diploma in Creative Media Production and Technology as part of their study of Documentary photography. We discussed story structure, ethics of when to shoot and when maybe not to, copyright, pace, composition, the impact that words have when included in an image and presentation platform of work both in progress and completed. What was even more rewarding is that this college is situated at the end of Lea Bridge Road where I am shooting my latest story. This served to demonstrate that stories can be shot on your doorstep so you don't need to travel to the ends of the Earth to find great visual story.

My picture story shot in the Star & Garter was the second book of my work published by Cafe Royal Books. Café Royal Books (CRB) has been operating since 2005 as an independent publisher of photography photo books run by Craig Atkinson based in Southport England. CRB produces small run publications predominantly documenting social and cultural change including themes of youth, leisure, music, protest, race, religion, industry, identity, architecture and fashion, often in Britain and Ireland. Its publications are held in public collections including Tate Britain, the British Library and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London; The Museum of Modern Art in New York City, The National Gallery of Canada and the Baltic Centre for contemporary Art.

 

 

Picked up by national media and the BBC a fun then and now visual story. In 1983 I documented the lunchtime drinkers in the Star and Garter pub, known locally in Hull as Rayners. My pictures had just been published by Café Royal Books so I decided to shoot a follow up series of pictures by holding prints from 1983 in the exact place in the pub today, nearly 40 years later. The characters come alive once more, albeit slightly ghostly, for a chat, a pint and a laugh in their old haunt. Click on the cuttings above to go to the online publications or the picture above for the ITV News item.

The book 'A portrait of the High Street' was published to coincide with the exhibition of my series of documentary environmental portraits that examines the High Street business owners during and just after the Covid pandemic. The work was sponsored by the Stow Brothers, supported by City of London and beautifully designed by Verity Watkins.

Dubai Press Club (DPC), hosted a session with Reuters, the world’s largest multimedia news provider, discussing the fundamentals of storytelling through photography, including ways to master visual storytelling elements to create a compelling photograph. The presentation was led by Russell Boyce, Middle East & Africa Editor, Reuters Pictures, and touched on the importance of speed when capturing images while also maintaining accuracy and ethical practices. During the session held at DPC headquarters, Boyce spoke about Reuters’ ‘The Wider Image’ project, an award-winning interactive experience showcasing visual insights by Reuters photographers.  Sharing his experience with an audience of UAE-based photo editors, Boyce said:  “Photographers need to think about telling the story visually while bearing in mind these six elements. The ‘Long form narrative’ storytelling elements include paying great attention to the general view, portrait, action, impact, detail and wow factor.” “There are many stories photographers can shoot,” Boyce added. “All they have to do is open their eyes to the things they can see every day, and what I’ve seen so far is that the region is very interested in this aspect of photography.” Boyce, who also manages and trains photographers, said photojournalists can work in teams and come up with ideas that are important to them and the world. During the session, Boyce also addressed how social media platforms and hand-held device technology has altered the way people consume news and information. He said that consumers today expect free and instant content, which makes social media a major competitor for news agencies. Salem Belyouha, Acting Director of Dubai Press Club, expressed his appreciation to Boyce for sharing his professional experience with participants. Belyouha also highlighted the close relationship between Dubai Press Club and Reuters and said: “Dubai Press Club is keen on working with leading media organisations like Reuters to support the development of the media sector locally and regionally. Through organising various training programmes and workshops, we hope to develop and enhance the skillsets of media professionals in the region and enable them to keep abreast of developments in the region and across the world.” DPC organises a number of workshops and interactive sessions throughout the year in partnership with leading international media organisations to equip journalists with the skills required to cover various events and write in-depth news stories and analysis while maintaining high journalistic standards. Targeting mainly media professionals and youth, including people interested in the media field, the programmes aim to strengthen Dubai’s position as a leading global destination for the media industry.

I was invited by Jessica Crombie, Lecturer at the London College of Communication to speak about ethics and photojournalism to the BA and MA Documentary Photography and Photojournalism courses in May 2019. Subjects addressed were what behavior is acceptable when taking pictures in difficult situations in terms of cultural reference. Where are the boundaries of situational manipulation and when does Photoshop cross the line from being creative interpretation to image manipulation and who has the right to say so. We also discussed copyright law. The talk started with a picture of a raw carrot on white plate - hence the puzzled looks.

An audience with high expectations so I talked about my 30-year visual journey from Bob Carvers Fish and Chip Restaurant and Hessle Road in Hull to my role as the Editor for Middle East and Africa, Pictures, Reuters. I steered the conversation from cameras to pictures, the audience more than willing to do this.

The talk took place at the Creative & Cultural Space 2 of the HiP gallery during an exhibition of my pictures taken in 1983/4. Picture stories from the Star and Garter, Rag and Bone man George Norris on his horse and cart, people of Hull living with blindness, drag act Kandy de Barry (now called Bobby Mandrell) at the St Georges and more. It was great to see characters and family members from my stories show up. Many thanks to Alan Raw from the HiP gallery who made this all happen.

I am very proud that Cafe Royal Books publsihed my story 'George Norris Rag Bone Hull 1983' that tells the story of 19-year-old George who followed in his family footsteps in the Rag and Bone trade. The book sold out. Café Royal Books publications are held in public collections including Tate Britain, the British Library and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London; The Museum of Modern Art in New York City, The National Gallery of Canada and the Baltic Centre for contemporary Art.

To be invited by the Bath Royal Literary & Scientific Institution to talk about positive news imagery from Middle East and Africa regions often associated with conflict, disaster and suffering was very enjoyable, refreshing and a challenge.

A lot of fun going to Monocle radio to talk about the best of year pictures with Tom Edwards. Interesting describing the pictures for a radio audience but once we starting chatting about how the pictures were taken, ethics, quality and the process of getting the pictures from the field to the clients it all made lots of sense. You can hear the piece here - scroll on to about 33 minutes.

It was quite a privilege to speak at the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities on the importance of authentic visual news. Part of Cambridge University CRASSH describe themselves as ‘CRASSH was established at the University of Cambridge in 2001 and is now one of the world’s largest interdisciplinary research institutions.’ Speaking with me was Elliot Higgins from Bellingcat, very interesting.

I was invited to address the photographic students at the South Bank University about the news picture business. It was the second time I had been asked to talk here. The students came from all years and the lecture was wide ranging. I explained about the state of the business now and its possible future, ethics, the technology Reuters use to move pictures quickly and the structure of building a narrative picture story. After this address I invited a group of eight students to visit Reuters for a day to have their portfolio reviewed and meet senior editors. One student with the best portrfolio had a week's work experience.

A rewarding experience for me addressing all three year groups at Falmouth University on the news picture business, how it works and how to work in it and the challenges it faces. Proud to have been sent this by the course director Gretchen Viehmann 'We’ve all told you that we have never seen students ask so many informed questions after a lecture before and we’re not making that up. Your talk managed to hit a nerve with them and to make them think about what they were doing.'

An ambition achieved as I spoke at the Royal Geographical Society as part of the Digital Doughnut Inspiration conference, the celebration of creativity, ideas and innovation. Subjects were curation, the impact of social media and inspiring photographers to develop ideas through narrative and visual experimentation.

Through Reuters picture partners in Oslo, NTV I was asked to speak at the Hostseminaret. This was shortly after the publication of the pictures of the drowned refugee boy Aylan Kurdi on a beach in Turkey. The question posed; The war, the humanitarian disaster and distress in Syria has lasted for nearly five years. With images of three year old Aylan who ended his life in flight on a beach in Greece woke Europe in earnest. The suffering and the desperate flight had a face and a scene that touched people worldwide. Since the photo was published have the commitment and the desire to help has increased in many European countries. In Norway, as in many other countries, changed the picture the public debate about what has become the largest influx of refugees since World War II on the European continent. At this year's autumn seminar will meet Russell Boyce, global editor of "News Projects Pictures" in Reuters in London that talks about narrative power of good press photo. How designs can touch us, influencing international events and change the world. You can see the address here

 
 
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