The most important question when working with any photographer is what can they do for your image. I have helped enhance many people’s careers whether famous or infamous or purely to enhance their product ranges. I mention some of the experiences that shape my perception as they give depth and perspective to the way I look at the the world and how the world can in turn look at you or your products or services.
I’m a freelance London based photographer, that helped set up and run YD Image prior to re-connecting back to fashion and portrait photography. I have moved from the studio to street and back and combine my working knowledge. My photographic range encompases fashion, news and paparazzi, fetish, album covers, landscapes, travel, glamour, portraiture and still life photography. High rents and the freedom of the street and the ease of dealing with more commercial mediums such as newspapers, magazines, T.V, internet and mobile phone downloads led me to cross over to agency work in 1999. I have and can sell pictures, video, music and art all over the world. I have combined music with street imagery and video footage to show you the joys of the celebrity strewn streets of night time London and the eposure that I can bring you.
I first developed a serious interest in photography in 1985 when at Harrow School, starting with a Minolta 700. My background has given me an extensive array of contacts from all walks of life. Don McCullin, Cartier Bresson and Wegee were my primary inspirations, moving on to Nikon, after seeing the one that saved Don McCullin’s life.
In 1987 I raised money and went to India to help build a school in Jobat, Madhya Pradesh. On the 3rd February 1988 I was watching a Japanese couple doing Tai Chi on the ghats in Varanessi, City of Sadhus and on 26th February 1988 I went to Sanchi which is the location of several Buddhist monuments dating from the third century BCE to the twelfth century CE and is one of the important places of Buddhist pilgrimage. These experiences led to and influence the work I do, especially the importance of toaist and buddhist philosophy in the modern world. Toranas surround the Stupa and they each represent love, peace, trust, and courage. After not a disimiliar experience to William Sutcliffe’s Are You Experienced? The cliched “India made me want to find myself” became real, after taking pictures and being moved by the Goan beaches, deserts of Rajastan, sadhus and “holy” men of Nepal and the mountains around Kashmir and Ladark. I went to the Hemis festival which is held every year in the Hemis Monastery, the biggest Buddhist monastery of Ladakh. Which is celebrated on the tenth day of lunar month in the Tibetan calendar. The festival is celebrated in the commemoration of the birth anniversary of Guru Padmasambhava.
In 1988 went to Oxford Brookes University, studying anthropology and visual studies which was a useful background to the work I do now and a great influence from the contacts that I made. I then worked as a film production/post production runner, knowing Soho like the back of my hand.
I then moved into fashion photography and inspired by Peter Lindbergh, Helmut Newton and Tony Heagren I assisted for a year, who gave me a well rounded view of how to understand fashion.
The spirit of India inspired my desire to mimic and step beyond Cartier Bresson’s earlier inspiration and after a 7 year search I found an authentic teacher in, Master Simon Wong, at Yellowdragon in London’s Chinatown in 1995. Rather than just reading Bresson’s original influence Eugen Herrigel’s “Zen and the art of archery,” which inspires my determination to capture my own decisive moments, I seek through photography my own and my clients enlightenment.
The importance of technology and Nikon D300s, the 17-35mm and 70-200mm are my tools for breaking stories and for working on your creative projects. Secure in the knowledge, that the YD philosophy places great emphasis on realising that everything around us is just an illusion and that as humans, we are controlled by our desires through our perception of sights, sounds, smells, tastes, touches and thoughts as “reality.” I seek depth in the work that I deliver with meaning and purpose that will enhance whatever you are trying to promote. As part of real kung fu training you aim to achieve freedom from your desires and to raise your consciousness and those that you work with, of life to a greater level. By developing this understanding, I have a much clearer mind, I have greater wisdom to sort out all the problems in mine and my clients life.
From 1996-2004 I had a studio, Studio 71 in Shoreditch, and built up my portfolio and then started covering events/entertainment news for Big Pictures, All Action, Eurofoto, Wenn and Xposure before working with YD Image to provide a wider spectrum of services.
Pictures taken include the early chronicling of Prince Harry’s rise to notoriety as the drinking, raving, womanising and street fighting Prince. Sienna Miller and Orlando Bloom’s intimate moment at a polo match, Mickey Rourke stealing another man’s girlfriend, footballer Kierion Dyer’s rape alibi, the comedy terrorist’s security breach at Prince William’s 21st at Windsor Castle, Timberlake’s errant lady, the king of spin Alastair Campbell’s date with Saddam and Lindsay Lohan’s internet viral meme exposure. Recent pictures brought me into the legal and political arena, which is always good for a little left brain exercise and the realisation that cash and law are the great equalisers. I have travelled to Cannes, South Africa, Marbella and Ibiza for various news organisations and PR companies and also working on interesting collaborative projects.
The entertainment market has been an unorthodox training ground, but has certainly been a intriguing world of street journalism, from which my elements of dry humour arise. Although it is merely the veneer from which my true creativity has taken root to promote your brand with the extensive contacts that I have built up over the years.
My work has been featured in UK newspapers such as News of the World, The Sun, Star, Daily and Sunday Mirror, Daily Mail, Mail on Sunday, Daily Record, Sunday People, Daily and Sunday Express, Guardian, Telegraph, Evening Standard, Times and Sunday Times, Daily and Sunday Sport and in magazines including Front, Loaded, Zoo, Heat, Star, Now, New, Closer, OK, Hello, Inside Soap, M Celebs, Bliss, Sneak, People (US), Star (US) & National Enquirer (US), as well as being syndicated in many other territories around the world.
And I have appeared on many TV and radio stations including Sky TV, BBC, BBC News 24, BBC Radio 5, BBC Radio 2′s Jeremy Vine Show, BBC Radio Belfast, ITN, ITV’s GMTV, Channel 4′s Richard & Judy show, Channel 5 (all UK), CNN, CBS, NBC, ABC (USA), TV Asahi & Fuji (Japan), APTV, Channel 9 (Australia), RTL (Germany). Now getting the perfect synergy between the most commercially viable pictures, video, art, music and stories with creative merit. I have been a photo feature editor for Don’t Magazine, looking at the whole media game from a political, social, philosophical, legal and entertainment perspective. I always enjoy working with different people and commercially viable projects, especially things that we can get aired and published and as a myspace/facebook/twitter/youtube/flickr/wordpress acolyte taking full advantage of the Social Media Revolution. I am keen to interweave all mine and your myriad philosophical and creative talents into seamless multimedia sales.
For 2010 and I am helping Master Simon Wong break his art and working on an exhibition with Paul Ashby called “Queens of the Realm.”