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You pay a price for
switching to Hasselblad
medium format
The same one
you pay for a high-end
35mm DSLR
£8,995 + VAT
The new Hasselblad H4D-31. The H4D body, the 31 megapixel back, the 80 mm lens. A
complete Hasselblad system for just £8995 + VAT. For high-end 35 mm DSLR users who

know that image quality is everything but who thought they could never afford it. Until now.
Visit or call us on 020 8731 3250 to find out more.
This month I’m not going to be
able to say as much as usual
about the latest issue, but hey, I guess that’s not such a
bad thing, when design and photography define a page.
I never get bored of talking to photographers about
photography or listening to what photographers have to say;
it’s what feeds the content of the magazine and dictates how and
why we include what we do. Any of our regular readers will
know that this is not a magazine created to a format.
Each month we try to bring together a whole host of stuff that
responds to what we see and hear. We also try to make sure
we listen and talk to people working in all areas and at all levels
of success, from iconic photographers such as Michael
Thompson on Page 54 to people just starting out like the
Haarala Hamiltons on Page 88. We have photographers
filled with passion and determination, such as Maciej
Dakowicz on Page 64, and humour and commitment,
like Peter Dench on Page 36, as well as those

who understand the business and future of

photography, such as Clive Booth on Page 30.
These are just some of the photographers
who help to define our community which I hope
you also feel part of. Welcome to the club.

Grant Scott, Editor

8 Portfolio
The best of your work posted on to our online portfolio.

53 Exposure
Fashion photographer Ellen Von Unwerth shoots for
wedding dress designer Jenny Packham.

25 Being There
PP Editor Grant Scott recalls a shoot at the Moët
& Chandon chateau in France where he was caught
in the crossfire between a non-English-speaking
photographer and a fashion editor.

30 Dispatches
Clive Booth gears up for the high-octane event
that is London Fashion Week.

36 The Dench Diary

The sometime working pro travels to Norway to
teach up-and-coming photography students.

42 The World of Convergence

Don’t miss film maker John Campbell’s regular
news-packed take on the world of convergence.

45 Frontline
We talk to Roger Tooth, head of photography at
The Guardian and The Observer.

51 Guess the Lighting

Ever seen a great image and wanted to know how it
was lit? Ted Sabarese explains all.

64 The Year of Living

Peter Dench catches up with the owners A portrait of David Bailey by Norwegian photographer
of the Third Floor Gallery in Cardiff to discover what Pål Hansen. Read our interview with Pål on page 74. 23 Diary
it’s really like to run a gallery. Our pick of this month’s most exciting photographic
exhibitions around the UK.
80 August Sander is Important... 70 It’s Only Rock ‘N’ Roll
Robin Gillanders explains why the German portrait but I Like It 98 Working the System
photographer matters so much. Paul Middleton talks to Michael Ochs, possibly the PP Editor and longtime Hasselblad user Grant Scott
. greatest archivist of music images in the world. discovers that going back to the legendary brand is
93 Talkin’ Photography Blues all about asking yourself questions.
Following an overwhelming response to his article 74 What Lies Beneath
on loneliness last year, Grant Scott revisits the Julia Molony meets Pål Hansen, the Norwegian 103 Stop Press...
subject of depression among photographers. photographer who sees beyond the glamour and The latest essential news, gossip and kit from the
glitz of the celebrity world he shoots. pro world.
114 Legend
We look at the life of American photojournalist 88 Supermarket Sweep
James Nachtwey, who has turned his lens on war
and disaster for more than 30 years.
Cass Chapman talks to Max and Liz Haarala
Hamilton, whose personal project on The People’s
Supermarket is now bringing them new work. 28 Podcast
Free photographic discussion for the masses.
54 God is in the Details Your thoughts, your opinions, your page.
14 Click

PP Editor Grant Scott speaks exclusively to fashion

photographer Michael Thompson about his stellar This month’s line-up of the best news, dreams, 96 Subscribe
career and what it was like to assist Irving Penn. themes and photographic schemes. Check out our latest subscription offers. 5

Robin Gillanders Paul Middleton Roger Tooth Michael Thompson

Lecturer in photography Writer Photojournalist Photographer
Robin Gillanders is Reader in Paul, a part-time football and music A press photographer who cut his Michael has shot celebrities for
Photography at Edinburgh Napier writer, is a full-time fan of late folk teeth on the Hackney Gazette, Roger magazines such as Vogue and Vanity
University. He is also a practising singer Phil Ochs. It was through this is now head of photography for Fair, as well as campaigns for luxury
portrait photographer and has link that he gained access to his The Guardian, The Observer and brands including Emporio Armani
several works in the collection of the brother, the music archivist Michael Since he joined and Chanel. At the start of his career
Scottish National Portrait Gallery. Ochs, whom he interviewed for the The Guardian as assistant picture he assisted Irving Penn, having
The author of several books on feature on page 70. Describing the editor the industry has embraced knocked on his door to find it being
photography, for PP he looks at the incredible archive as “a hobby that new forms of multimedia, changing opened by the legendary
work of the German portrait got out of control”, Ochs began the commissioning of photography. photographer himself. From there
photographer August Sander – who collecting photographs while In our Frontline feature on page 45 his career went into orbit. On page
is the subject of a major exhibition working at Columbia Records in the he discusses the changing face of 54 he talks to PP Editor Grant Scott
in Scotland – and explains why his late 1960s. Paul runs the Phil Ochs photojournalism and what it takes about his approach and how being a
work is so influential. See page 80. website No More Songs. to be a press photographer. Virgo has influenced his style.

Professional Photographer is published, 01242 265895 VISIT
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Each month we share the best of the latest postings from our online portfolio with our magazine
readers, so for your chance to appear in Professional Photographer, go online and start
uploading your best images to If you want to see more
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UK 11





12 UK
seminars & events Calumet Spring Open Days
Come and meet us at our Spring Open Days in-store.
There’ll be lots of product demonstrations, promotions and experts will be on hand for advice. Of course we’ll
have sensor cleaning at each location too.
Our stores will be open from 10am until 6pm. We look forward to seeing you there.
Birmingham Wednesday 6th April Belfast* Wednesday 13th April Edinburgh Wednesday 20th April
Manchester Wednesday 4th May Drummond Street Wednesday 11th May * Belfast 10am-4pm

Studio Lighting
John Clements
If you need ultimate control of where and how you
place light, and or simply a need for sheer power,
then studio lighting is the answer.
And for many photographers it becomes a tool
they cannot be without.
During this event John shares his many years of
experience too show from the absolute basics,

2 how to choose and use studio lighting for simple

and repeatable, people, product and still-life Say it with Flowers
day photography. Jenny Lilly
Landrover –
Manchester Thursday 14th April Jenny is a widely published and exhibited stock An Introduction to
Location Lighting
Glasgow Thursday 5th May garden photographer, who has a one-woman
exhibition of her photographs of gardens which will
Night Photography
coincide with this seminar, at Birmingham Botanical Richard Southall
Experience Gardens and Glasshouses, where the photography
Richard is a prominent nationwide architectural
will take place.
Tim Wallace and interiors photographer who has been
The seminar will start at the Gallery at Birmingham producing images to the leisure, retail, residential
Join Commercial advertising and car Botanical Gardens and Jenny will discuss aspects of and constructions industries for over 23 years.
photographer Tim Wallace at an exclusive live her work as displayed in the imagery on view, He is a qualified college lecturer and a member
shooting event . followed by a session of photography at the Gardens, of the Association of Photographers.
Tim works with clients across the globe such as Birmingham Botanical Gardens and Glasshouses An evenings walking tour of Birmingham city
Aston Martin, Land Rover, Mercedes and Morgan. Westbourne Road, Birmingham B15 3TR centre where the participants will gain a basic
Well known within the automotive industry for his
Wednesday 1st June understanding of the techniques required for
creativity and open approach he is regarded by
successful night photography in a city
many as one of today's leading car
environment. A digital SLR and tripod will be
photographers with a unique and strong style of
work that inspires not only his clients but also
their customers, something that was reflected in Birmingham Thursday 14th April
2010 when he won International Advertising
photographer of the year.
Thursday 19th May & Friday 20th May
Landrover Experience, Lode Lane, Solihulll
West Midlands B92 8NW
Maximum 14 Attendees - book early to avoid
Studio Lighting –
The Next Level
John Clements
Studio Lighting Seminar Level 3
Morning session 10.30-13.00 Portraits using
Creating lighting solutions for various face and
body shapes Creating the all important backdrop Home Studio An Introduction to
Lighting for mood, atmosphere and drama Further
posing and composition advice, hints and tips Paul Southall Successful
Bringing a variety of lighting effects together to
work as a ‘whole’
This workshop will show how to set up and use a
two head kit to achieve professional style portrait
Studio Lighting Seminar Level 4
images. Photography
Afternoon session 14.00-16.30 The format of the day will be a demonstration of
Mastering your cameras characteristics and the use of the Home Studio Kits and the techniques Richard Southall
used to light a model to give varying styles of A seminar session followed by a walking tour
Morgan Motors lighting for its specific performance capabilities
Refining exposures through histogram usage Flash classic poses. of Birmingham where participants will gain a
basic understanding to architectural exterior
Photography Day metering for accuracy The best lighting tool
(accessory) for the job Recreating famous styles
A practical session will then follow for students to
photograph the model. photography.
For full details visit On location shooting - working with ambient light A critique of the students images and a final Course will include discussions on the legal
Morgan Motor Company, Pickersleigh Road, Lighting or Post Capture? Choosing the best question and answer session will close the days aspects of street photography and the law.
Malvern Link, Worcestershire WR14 2LL solution workshop. A camera and tripod will be essential.
Tuesday 10th June Drummond Street Saturday 30th April Birmingham Thursday 28th April Birmingham Saturday 21st May

Check our new website for times and prices and more great workshops!
We now accept paypal for seminar and event bookings.
click Mick Jagger,
London, 1987.
the latest
photographic news,
dreams, themes
and schemes.
edited by Eleanor O’Kane

The seldom seen kid
It’s often the case with a long-dead
superstar that some information bubbles up
to the surface revealing just a little bit more
about their life than we previously knew.
Photographer André de Dienes was born in
Romania and came to America in 1938 to
shoot fashion, which he then abandoned to
concentrate on shooting nudes. In 1945 he
hired 19-year-old aspiring actress/model
Norma Jeane Dougherty for her first
modelling shoot and struck up a lasting
friendship with the woman who was to take
the world by storm as Marilyn Monroe.
Taschen has decided to reissue a book of
images by de Dienes showing a much
younger, more naïve (and less blonde)
Monroe than we are used to seeing.
André de Dienes, Marilyn, published by
Taschen, £24.99, ISBN: 978-3-8365-2710-1.



I like to make people

Honky Tonk Man from the 2010 exhibition spanning Jagger’s
whole career and shot by a variety of look as good as they’d
The subject of a retrospective at last year’s Les photographers, including Cecil Beaton,
Rencontres d’Arles photo festival in France, Mick Anton Corbijn, Herb Ritts and Andy Warhol. like to look, and with
Mick Jagger The Photobook is published on
Jagger is one of the most photographed rock stars
in the world, perhaps due partly to the longevity 3 May by Thames & Hudson, priced £14.95,
luck, a shade better.
of his career. A book by François Hebel – the ISBN: 978-0-500-289495. Norman Parkinson
director of the Arles festival – features images

“She was
absolutely nobody
at the time, just
a 19-year-old
girl who had just
started out
modelling a few
weeks before
that trip. She
was completely
sincere and
André de Dienes
Jonelle, Los Shoot for Vogue,
Angeles, 2009. Paris, 1977.


True colours
NEWS... One of the 25 bad boys from our
August 2010 issue, Guy Bourdin was

famous for his sophisticated use of

Run for cover colour and form. A new book from
Red Cover, the homes and teNeues, part of its Stern
interiors picture library, has FOTOGRAFIE Portfolio series, pulls
Dream on finally closed after hitting hard together the work of this influential
American photographer Paul Jasmin shoots for top times more than two years ago. photographer, whose collaboration with
magazines such as Vogue, W and Interview. In his In summer 2008 the agency shoemaker Charles Jourdan changed the
latest book, California Dreaming, he uses models he accepted a Company Voluntary face of fashion advertising. Breaking
found through his college job and friends to explore Arrangement, which saw the boundaries of what was possible in
the notion of dreams and desires, shooting in and creditors agreeing to work with the ad world, Bourdin’s images still
around his apartment on Wilshire Boulevard in Los Red Cover in a bid to keep the provoke extreme reactions. Love them
Angeles. The perfect weather, pure light and agency afloat. Those with images or hate them, their force is undeniable.
otherworldly air of the young models make for at the agency have been Stern FOTOGRAFIE Portfolio No. 61
beautiful images that embody the spirit of California. contacted by email and advised Guy Bourdin, published by teNeues,
California Dreaming by Paul Jasmin, published by to send hard drives to the £26.95, ISBN: 978-3-652-00002-4.
Steidl, £31.50, ISBN: 978-3-86930-030-6. Red Cover office for retrieval. 17

AOP Gold and Best in
Category Award winner 2010.

Close call
The Association of Photographers has launched three of its
competitions: The Photographers, Assistants and Open
awards. The Photographers Award is open to full and
provisional AOP Photographers, while the Assistants Award is
open to AOP Assistant members to showcase the best imagery
from the next generation of professional photographers. As its
name suggests, the Open Award is for both members and
non-members. With no categories or themes, it recognises all

Life behind the lens forms of outstanding imagery shot by professionals and
amateurs alike. The deadlines for entry are: Photographers –
The National Media Museum in Bradford houses collections from some of 3 May; Assistants – 15 April; Open – 20 May.
the world’s greatest photographers and while its images might be familiar to For more information visit
us we don’t always know much about those who took the pictures. A new, free
exhibition at the museum, The Lives of Great Photographers, explores the
lives of the men and women behind the lens with images and histories of the
photographers themselves as we’ve rarely seen or heard them. The exhibition
encompasses a variety of photographers dating back to the early days of the
medium; portraits and work of legends such as William Henry Fox Talbot and
Edward Steichen, sit alongside images and work of street photographer
Weegee (pictured above in Coventry in 1963), Dorothea Lange, Tony
Ray-Jones and Larry Burrows. Famous for shining a light on how others
live, each photographer – none of whom is still alive – is represented by
a portrait, some of their remarkable images and personal effects such as
notebooks. It’s a great insight into the minds and motivation of those who
have changed how we see the world.
The Lives of Great Photographers, Gallery One, National Media Museum,
Bradford; 15 April-4 September;

Out of Africa
YOURSELF... The National Archives has digitised the photographic collection
of Britain’s defunct Colonial Office, showing for the first time
To the treats! magazine some of the earliest images taken in Africa. The collection
blog. If anyone asks, includes pictures of Prime Minister Harold Macmillan draped in

it’s research. leopard skin on his ‘Wind of Change’ tour in 1960 as well as this
http://treats image of his wife at a market in Accra, Ghana during that trip. View the archives at

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Eastern promise Work by finalists in Hasselblad’s 2010
Masters competition is now online to view
It doesn’t come much better and this year the public have a casting
than a backing from vote in the eventual winners. More than 2,500
Henri Cartier-Bresson. photographers from across the world
In 1977 the legendary French submitted images in a bid for the prestigious
photojournalist saw the work title. Just 110 have made the final
of Raghu Rai at an exhibition in cut and their pictures – in 11 categories –
Paris and recommended him are in online galleries at
to become a member of
Magnum. Since then, using
India as his backdrop, Raghu,
who was born in what is now
Pakistan, has created images
that perfectly capture the
spirit of this jam-packed,
chaotic culture. His first solo
UK show, at Nottingham
gallery New Art Exchange,
finally gives the British public
a chance to see Raghu’s India
in all its glory. Lens flare, alcohol, changing the world,
Raghu Rai’s Invocation to India is shooting portraits at f/1.2 and clothes with
at the New Art Exchange, lots of pockets; it’s all shit photojournalists
Woman at work, Nottingham, until 30 April. like, apparently. To find out more see

Delhi, 1989.

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We have done the hard work for you this month and chosen our essential
three photographic exhibitions on show now or coming up soon. For a full list
of exhibitions and events visit


The Rolling Stones outside the Donmar

Warehouse Theatre, London,1963.

Bob Marley & the Golden Age of Reggae Terry O’Neill: 50 Years at the Top
Proud Camden, The Horse Hospital, Stables Market, Chris Beetles Fine Photographs, 3-5 Swallow Street, London, W1B 4DE
Chalk Farm Road, London, NW1 8AH 020 7434 4319;
020 7482 3867; 23 March-23 April 2011
7 April-15 May 2011 A collection of vintage and modern prints will be on
Proud Galleries present Bob Marley & the show this spring to celebrate the 50-year career of
Golden Age of Reggae, a series of intimate photographer Terry O’Neill. Many previously unseen
photographs to mark the 30th anniversary of images, created from his original negatives, will be
the artist’s death. The photographs, taken in included in the exhibition. The work has only recently
1975 and 1976 by photojournalist Kim come to light after extensive research into the archives
Gottlieb-Walker – the wife of Island Records’ of the legendary British photographer.
head of publicity Jeff Walker – capture exciting Over the past five decades O’Neill has created
moments from Marley’s career. a different kind of celebrity portraiture with an intimate,
As well as images of the iconic reggae behind-the-scenes approach. His subjects have included
singer, the black-and-white collection some of the world’s most famous actors, actresses
includes other stars who brought reggae to and musicians, including Brigitte Bardot, Frank Sinatra,
the international stage, such as Peter Tosh, Elizabeth Taylor and the Rolling Stones.
Bunny Wailer, Toots Hibbert, Burning Spear The exhibition gives collectors and fans an exclusive
and Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry. opportunity to buy previously unavailable prints.

Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2011

University of Westminster’s Ambika P3 Space, 35 Marylebone Road, London,
NW1 5LS. 0845 262 1618;
5 April-1 May 2011
Thomas Demand from Germany, Roe Ethridge and Jim
Goldberg from the USA, and Elad Lassry from Israel have
been short-listed for the Deutsche Börse Photography
Prize 2011 and examples of their work can be seen at an
exhibition this spring.
The £30,000 first prize goes to a photographer of any
nationality who has made the most significant contribution
to photography in Europe during the previous year.
The winner will be announced at a ceremony on 26 April.
The awards, now in their 15th year, are run by the
Photographers’ Gallery, but the 2011 exhibition will be
shown at Ambika P3 at the University of Westminster while

the gallery is closed for redevelopment. The prize is one of

the most prestigious of the international arts awards. Thanksgiving, 1984.


© Fulvio Fulvietto

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Lost in France... things had started to go wrong. As always on a problem. I had to deliver to the client the images
Torrential rain, a French editorial shoots, budgets were tight but this was to he was expecting and whatever that took was
photographer who didn’t speak be a magazine supplement created in association
with Moët & Chandon (well, they were paying for
okay with me. My stance on this matter instantly
gained me the photographer’s respect. His name
English and a fashion editor at it on the basis of the concept I had sold to them), was Michel Momy and he is one of the
war with the photographer were so the expectations of everybody involved were
slightly higher than for the standard magazine
photographers from whom I have learnt the most
throughout my career. He had started out as a
not the best ingredients for a shoot. Unfortunately, they were not impressed by photographer while a French punk. He had shot
the local Ibis. The photographer had refused to for i-D magazine in the UK since its launch and
successful weeklong shoot. check in and instead found himself and his had an approach and personality that suggested
But they were just some of the assistant what he considered to be a much more it was his way or the highway. A man’s man,
appropriate hotel at considerably higher cost. proudly French and at home with the anarchic
challenges that faced PP Editor “The magazine will have to pay,” he had declared side of his personality, he was a photographer for
Grant Scott when he arrived with a Gallic shrug. Everyone else had checked
into the Ibis but no one was happy there. On the
whom creating the best images possible was
everything. He spoke hardly any English and I
at the Moët & Chandon chateau. Monday morning the French contingent had speak very little French, but we instantly got on
woken up to both black, rain-filled skies and the like a house on fire.
realisation that the fashion editor was staying Locations decided upon and models dressed,
It is often said that at the chateau. They were now very unhappy. we started to shoot the first of the fashion stories.
photography is a The first three days were meant to be devoted to There was a definite English/French divide
universal language but shooting three fashion stories based around light but we were shooting and moving forward.
that’s not a lot of use spring frocks and bright spring days before the Then at one o’clock on the dot Michel stopped.
when you’re squeezed fashion editor returned to the UK and the models It was his lunchtime and he expected a French
into a location bus went back to Paris, leaving the photographer and lunch: hot, well cooked, with bread, wine and
with a truculent French myself to spend the last day shooting still-life coffee. This was the final straw for the English
photographer refusing setups within the chateau. Heavy rain, cold days fashion editor, who was used to working through
to take any pictures, and no communication, even without the lunch and grabbing a sandwich when possible.
a fashion editor at her wits’ end, two language barriers, meant that this was not going This was not Michel’s way and he strode off to
physically shaking French fashion models to happen. It was time for me to adopt the role of his car to go in search of the lunch he expected.
(I presumed fear and cold were the reasons international peacekeeper. Much to the fashion The French crew did not expect to go with him,
for that) in the sodden grounds of the Moët editor’s disapproval I agreed to pay for the they were happy with the food they had picked up
& Chandon chateau in the French photographer to stay in his hotel of choice. from a supermarket on the way to the location.
countryside on the edge of the champagne Instantly he was happier and agreed to leave the I quickly followed Michel and jumped into his
town of Épernay.
I had got to the shoot later than everyone else
and by the time I arrived on the Monday morning
there was already stalemate. The atmosphere
“I had to deliver to the client the images he was
was as cold and depressing as the weather and
we still had four days to go.
expecting and whatever that took was okay with me.
The fashion editor had arrived the day before My stance on this matter instantly gained me the
and had no problems checking into the chateau
where she was staying as a guest of honour. photographer’s respect.” Grant Scott
The photographer had pulled together the rest of
the team, including the models, from people he location bus with me to start scouting possible car. He gave me a look that said he approved
liked working with (all French-speaking only) and locations in the rain. We were off and running. of my decision.
they had driven up from Paris the previous day to The photographer was never going to be the In a small square in Épernay we found a
check into a hotel in the town. And that is when fashion editor’s best friend but to me that wasn’t family-run corner restaurant, which from the 25
outside looked depressing and definitely the stylist and the photographer. The images they I have always thought of still-life art direction
wrong choice. Michel, however, was convinced create on a shoot should come from their like playing soldiers as a child. You move things
this was the right place for lunch and he strode collaborative effort and vision. The art director around with an idea of where you want to put
across the square and into what was a cold, should be there as a creative and client barometer, things but there are no rules. You are
dusty, empty place which felt as if it had been not as a dictating force. At least that’s how I have moving things and positioning them in ways that
dreamt up by a set designer hoping to create the always liked to behave on shoots. There is nothing make sense only to you. Then when you get
most perfect caricature of a provincial French worse than a pushy art director on a shoot, things right you sit back and admire your display.
The judgments you have made are based solely on
storytelling and aesthetics and that was the
“He was constantly experimenting with composition, formula, which Michel and I brought to our
dinner party still lifes. We found a table near a
never content with one approach to framing. window which gave us some beautiful and soft
natural light, and I began to create the setups from
I had never seen anybody work like it and it was the glass and ceramics we had been supplied with.

inspirational.” Grant Scott Having worked on innumerable still-life shoots in

the past I had a pretty good idea of what worked
and the importance of having odd numbers of
restaurant. An old lady, wonderfully appropriate being disrespectful to the photographer and the items and not using too many props. Less is more
for the interior, came out to greet us from the other creatives involved. definitely applies to still-life shoots. What I
kitchen. Michel ordered for both of us before we However, on this occasion it was obvious that wasn’t expecting was Michel’s photographic
had even chosen a table and sat down. We were Michel was never going to work with the approach to what I’d created. Hasselblad in hand
to have steak and red wine, a Saint-Émilion. fashion editor and vice versa, so I had no choice and with no sign of a tripod, he leapt and bounded
We sat and ate. The steak was fantastic, as was but to step in. Again we scouted locations around the setup in exactly the same way as he
the wine, and we tried to communicate through and worked through our shoot list. At one o’clock had photographed the models over the previous
broken snippets of each other’s national language. on the dot, Michel again mimed the actions of three days. It was still-life photography as
A strong coffee and it was back into the rain and eating and drinking to me and off we went to an extreme sport as he battled with the setup and
the chateau. our little restaurant in the town. Again he ordered light to get what he perceived to be the perfect
The team was waiting; the French very chilled steak and wine from the old lady out of the frame. He didn’t even shoot a Polaroid; he trusted
and relaxed, the fashion editor very cold and kitchen. Our conversation was just as stilted, we his instincts and made still-life photography fun.
wound-up. We finished shooting all of the setups drank coffee and then returned to the shoot. Of course it goes without saying that come one
we needed, despite the weather. Michel was The next day was just the same, a morning of o’clock we were off to what had become our
a whirling dervish with a Hasselblad. He would fashion images around the grounds with regular lunchtime location and meal; only this
run, jump, lean and do whatever it took to get the a one o’clock stop for the same lunch in the same time our lunch was both longer and more relaxed
image. He was constantly experimenting with restaurant. By the end of Wednesday we had shot than on the previous days. We had become firm
composition, never content with one approach to all of the fashion setups we needed and it was friends through adversity and our joint passion
framing. I had never seen anybody work like it time to say our goodbyes to the French team of for photography. We didn’t speak each other’s
and it was inspirational. He did all the work and models, hair and make-up, and to the fashion language but it didn’t actually matter.
required little from the models other than editor, who could not wait to escape back to We polished off the remaining shots that
expecting them to look great and help him create London. Just Michel and I were left to spend afternoon and then Michel drove me back to
his images by listening to minimum instruction. a day shooting still-life setups of place settings Paris. The rain had started again and I slept for
At the end of the day everybody went off to and glasses in the interior of the chateau. most of the journey, exhausted from the stress,
their designated hotels. I went to the Ibis It is never ideal to ask a photographer who tensions, work and wine of the past four days.
and immediately understood why Michel had not specialises in fashion, beauty and portrait work to My friendship with Michel continues to this
wanted to stay there. The next day the weather shoot still lifes as well and when commissioning day. We have shot together all over Europe on all
had improved and everybody was getting on well; it is something which you always do your best to sorts of shoots and campaigns. But wherever
everybody, that is, except the fashion editor, avoid. Unfortunately, in those days and even we have been and whomever we have been
who was never going to be persuaded by Michel’s more so now, budgets dictate and you are left working for, come one o’clock I always get the
anarchic charms. with no choice. look that says “time for lunch”. PP
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should always be between the fashion editor or bothered in any way about shooting the setups.

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Every month we record a free to download podcast in which we discuss, debate and talk around
a subject featured in the magazine. We post them on our website and you can subscribe for
free and download them via iTunes. So if you haven’t listened in yet, it’s time to join us online.
THIS MONTH’S PODCAST business and photography skills go hand in November Issue
April Issue hand, discuss potential areas where seeking SEXY OR SEXIST?
GETTING YOUR WORK EXHIBITED professional advice could reap rewards and ask Grant Scott, Eleanor O’Kane and Peter Dench
In the latest podcast, the PP team of Grant Scott, if current photography students are aware of discuss an issue that often crops up in the
Eleanor O’Kane and podcast regular Peter Dench the importance of business skills when choosing industry: why some images are seen as sexy
discuss the world of exhibitions. As curator and a career as a professional photographer. while others are labelled sexist. Does it depend
exhibitor respectively, Grant and Peter share their on context or are there other factors at play?
experiences and the team discuss the right way to January Issue
make an exhibition of yourself. ICONS OF PHOTOGRAPHY October Issue
PP Editor Grant Scott and deputy editor Eleanor THE SECRETS OF BEING A PRO
AND THOSE YOU MAY HAVE MISSED… O’Kane are joined by regular columnist The team discuss the secrets of professional
March Issue and photojournalist Peter Dench to discuss the photography. Veteran pros Grant and Peter relate
THE PERSONAL PROJECT SPECIAL importance of learning from the masters, and their experiences of working alongside other
The team grapple with the importance of creating debate the point at which they believe a photographers and how these have influenced
personal projects for sustaining and developing photographer becomes an icon. The team talk their working practices. With the days of the
a photographer’s career. Should a photographer about their personal favourites and explain why communal darkroom and lab long gone, the
approach the project in the same way as a they think their choices deserve iconic status. opportunity to share news and advice in person
commission or adopt a different tack? They look has disappeared. The team look at new ways of
at photographers who have got it right and ask if December Issue networking, including the PP’s United States of
there are too many introspective projects. PHOTOGRAPHIC COMPETITIONS Photography support group.
Grant Scott is joined by Eleanor O’Kane and
February Issue photographer Peter Dench to discuss the world of You can subscribe for free and download the
THE BUSINESS SPECIAL competitions, the contentious Taylor Wessing podcasts from iTunes by typing professional
The regular podcast team talk tax, finance and Photographic Portrait Prize and whether there is photographer into the search tab or listen via
marketing. They ponder whether possessing such a thing as a formula for winning. PP

dispatches Clive Booth tales from the frontline of professional photography
According to the British Fashion Council’s putting on the five shows I am going to cover over
Value of Fashion Report 2010, the UK fashion the next three days: Osman, David Koma, Holly
industry contributes £37 billion to the Fulton, Mark Fast and Emilio de la Morena.
economy and directly employs 816,000 As usual it’s chaotic and space is at a premium.
people, making it the largest employer of all Billy fights to get us a table, while Michael
the creative industries. It is similar in size to organises a tiny area in Charlotte’s office for the
the food and drink service and telecommunication laptop card reader and twin G-Tech portables.
industries, and bigger than the wholesale and I start to assemble the DSLR equipment, Zacuto
retail auto industry, sports activity, chemical Crossfire, Z-Finder x2.5 and follow-focus system.
manufacturing and advertising/video sectors. I’ve fitted the zip gears (a gear ring which hugs
So here I am, ready to shoot at the industry’s the lens) to five of my favourite lenses: 24mm

This month: top event: London Fashion Week. All the

equipment is packed, batteries charged, and lenses
and sensors cleaned. It used to be that one big
f/1.4, 35mm f/1.4, 50mm f/1.2, 85mm f/1.2 and
135mm f/2. As we unpack the bags the table fills
with two Canon EOS 5D MkIIs, an EOS-1D
Clive steels himself to shoot Lowepro bag would hold everything; now it’s MkIV and a 100mm f/2.8 macro, 180mm f/3.5
three and, along with tripod bags and Pelican macro, two 14mm f/2.8, another 24mm f/1.4 and
at the UK fashion industry’s cases, it’s still growing. Sometimes I yearn for the 85mm f/1.2, plus a 17-40mm f/4, 28-70mm f/2.8,

biggest event of the year: simplicity of one camera body and a handful of
lenses... in the old days, not even 10 years ago,
70-200mm f/2.8 and finally 45mm and 90mm
tilt-shifts. As I want to shoot at wide apertures I
London Fashion Week. just two. The past few days have been spent
finalising security passes, organising equipment
bring along several ND filters. I count 16 lenses
in total and although it is entirely possible to do
loans, checking the location lighting and chatting this project with fewer, I prefer to have them all
with the team: Charlotte Lurot (director, Bacchus at my disposal.
Studio and co-collaborator), without whom none As it’s DSLR I have two trusted Manfrotto
of this would be possible; Bill Waters, first tripods (546GB legs, 501HDV head, a firm
assistant and lighting; and Michael Williams, favourite with a very easy levelling system) and
second assistant. one compact lightweight (190CXPRO4 legs,
I try to relax watching Stanley Kubrick’s 701HDV head) along with a rented Glidecam
Spartacus; I’ve been slowly ticking off the great HD-2000 camera stabiliser and Manfrotto
man’s work, first reading the books and then monopod (682B). For sound it’s the usual Rode
watching the films. I find the books are essential, on-camera along with a Rode studio mic and
“Handheld again and I’m especially when watching 2001 and more recently
The Shining, which scared me half to death.
Tascam portable recorder. Additional lighting
comes from the ever-faithful Litepanel 1x1
changing lenses quicker I marvel at the monumental levels of effort that Bi-Color LED with an array of gold, white and
Kubrick went to in order to fulfil his vision. silver reflectors for subtle fill. Media comes
than the models are I always feel nervous before shooting, and the in the form of four SanDisk Extreme Pro 90MB/s

changing outfits...” Clive Booth more uncertain the shoot the more nervous I get.
There is nothing certain about the outcome of this
UDMA6 CF cards along with the essential Lexar
CompactFlash Pro card reader.
shoot. My hope is that the finished film short will When I stand back and look at this somewhat
give the viewer a glimpse of what it feels like to confusing, bewildering and dazzling array of
be a part of the strange, mystical and magical hardware I think, “What the hell have I got myself
world that we are about to enter. As always I want into?” but quickly dispel the thought when I
the final result to be beautiful, atmospheric and to imagine the potential results. Given all this
some degree meaningful and real. hardware it’s difficult to believe that I can still
Sunday 20 February. At 8am I leave for London shoot so freely and move so easily but there is no
after a half-eaten bowl of porridge and a cup of getting away from the fact that it would not be
Lavazza. The journey is easy and I make it to possible without Billy and Michael. The DSLR
Somerset House for 11am. Security is tight and equipment is far more cumbersome than the

Charlotte’s assistant has the passes (around five camera alone, but Zacuto has made a fine job of
A model runs to change outfits, per person) and we enter backstage B at London creating a modular system that can be assembled
Canon EOS-1D MkIV, 50mm lens. Fashion Week. Bacchus Studio is responsible for and broken down very quickly and easily. I decide

“My hope is that the finished film short will give the viewer a glimpse of what it feels like to
be a part of the strange, mystical and magical world that we are about to enter.” Clive Booth

Backstage at London Fashion Week, Clive captured this

shot with a Canon EOS 5D MkII and 14mm lens clamped
to the base of a lighting rig with a monkey grip.

On the catwalk, Canon EOS-1D

MkIV, 14mm lens.

“...while the backstage

14mm captures
a multitude of magic,
last-minute make-up,
hair, darkness then light,
models distorted with
giant red shoes,
clapping, whooping and
dancing.” Clive Booth
Backstage make-up, Canon EOS-1D MkIV
handheld, 50mm lens with ND filter.

to shoot almost everything on the Canon EOS-1D world in moving pictures pushes me into the very footage shot on the tripod with the 50mm f/1.2
MkIV. It has a very long battery life, excellent necessary spaces which are normally the domain as the models come off the catwalk and rush to
low light capability, 50 fps (if needed) and a of the models, hair and make-up artists. All are change and then reappear. The Zacuto Crossfire
reassuring weight and strength. The 5D MkIIs patient and polite and there is a peace that exists can be lifted off the tripod in one move and I
will be static cameras shooting from occasional due to this symbiosis of being made up to be seen work handheld, walking through the line-ups
fixed positions on tripods or monkey grips. and recorded. There is so much to shoot here it’s shooting into light as girls have last-minute
Day one is a reacquaintance with the fashion almost overwhelming and I have to keep tweaks to hair and make-up while what seem like
show and the multitude of moments and reminding myself that although I’ve shot shows dozens of photographers fight for positions.
opportunities it brings. Backstage it’s bright light, many times in the past I must try to see this as if I switch to the Glidecam and a 5D MkII along
hot as hell, make-up mirrors, the sound of an it were the first time as I move from 85mm to with the 24mm f/1.4 Mk1 (I love the way this
advancing army of hair dryers, and little pockets 50mm and then 100mm macro. Both Billy and lens shows the elements when shooting into
of peace and quiet for the art of make-up Michael have never been backstage before and I light). Handheld again and I’m changing lenses
application. Models eating, sleeping, texting; hair watch their reactions as we walk from hair and quicker than the models are changing outfits:
stylists, make-up artists, stylists, production crew, make-up to wardrobe, line-up, rehearsals and 35, 85, 135, 24, 100, 135, each time making sure
designers, dressers, seamstresses, the list goes on. catwalk. As we have five shows in the one to allow the camera to do a sensor clean, which is
The smell of a hundred different products, walls location the final edit can be cut from elements in addition to a manual sensor clean with the
of clothes rails, boxes of shoes, model cards of each, enabling the finished film to appear blower, every hour or so. Billy and Michael are
allocating wardrobe and space, tables full of as one show, shot from a multitude of angles. pros and make it look effortless, Michael literally
accessories, steamers, ironing boards, Hoovers, I like the idea of this eclectic mixture of people, running to download cards. As with stills the
bottles and bottles of water, grapes, sandwiches colour and styles all wrapped up into one. shooting is intuitive, reacting to what I see,
and Haribos, radios, clipboards, note pads and The available light is for the most part bright trusting much to instinct, but unlike stills I must
cameras. Lots of cameras. Interestingly it has tungsten and we decide to set the white balance make sure I have covered multiple angles,
been two seasons since I was last backstage and accordingly. It is simply not possible to keep focal lengths and cutaways to make sure there is
nearly all the photographers are now using Canon. manually resetting the white balance, so this plenty of material for the edit. One beautiful
In fact I have to look hard to find anything else. compromise must be made. All cameras are set piece of moving imagery will work better when
Most are now shooting video with all manner of to record PAL 25fps 1,920 x 1,080p on manual, seen from different viewpoints.
DSLR contraptions, from the professional LCD monitor brightness at 4 (vital when this By day two it’s clear that the three of us are
to the home-made (aluminium, rods, wood and is the viewfinder) with grid display switched on working as a tighter unit. For many assistants

weightlifting weights). It’s chaos and calm, and picture style set to neutral. DSLR is still new and learning to assemble and
both at the same time. Shooting backstage is no Day one goes well and even exceeds my disassemble the gear is very different to the skills
picnic but my drive and passion to capture this expectations, with some great static and panning needed for stills. As the day unfolds I’m

Catwalk boot detail,
Canon EOS-1D MkIV, 85mm lens.

beginning to enjoy myself and relax a little, wife Samantha surrounded; she sits calmly as of the show with photographers in silhouette,
knowing that we already have many very usable tens of photographers just feet away open fire while the backstage 14mm captures a multitude
shots. Billy has to leave at lunchtime as he is again and again. A quiet anticipation follows and of magic, last-minute make-up, hair, darkness
photographing Bee Gee Robin Gibb at a the lights dim. I am now behind the onlookers, then light, models distorted with giant red shoes,
recording studio in the West End, and so Michael camera on tripod and 14mm... sssh, sssh and then clapping, whooping and dancing. Billy runs to my
and I trim down the gear and head to the catwalk. music, mobile phones dance like fireflies and position and grabs all the stuff as I head
First I shoot the rehearsal from three angles then light. Too much light; I quickly stop down backstage, handheld for one last key shot. I move
moving from wide to tight, and then I position the lens as models walk from left to right across with the crowd and push through to the security
myself in front of the photographers’ pit (it’s a the top quarter of the viewfinder. Happy with the guard who, seeing my pass, waves me on, all in
runthrough and nobody minds) with the 135mm 14mm footage, Michael hands me the 24mm, shot, all good. I find the journalists, camera
f/2. I let the models walk into the f/2 focal plane then 35mm, 50mm and finally 85mm. My hope crews and celebrities jostling to interview and
and then out again, the beautiful soft shapes is that this will cut well in the edit, finishing on meet the designer, and I go into orbit around this
gradually moving into focus to reveal determined a 50mm ultra-tight shot on the shoes (to be shot fascinating scene, occasionally stopping to
faces full of attitude. I linger on this, as the bokeh later that day). capture a nuance, look, question, kiss and hug.
is mesmerising and dreamlike. Before the show Day three. Because much of the detail and Then it’s all over. The space is cleared;
we take a position centre and back overlooking atmospheric footage are already on the hard hair and make-up are already setting up for
the audience and catwalk. Michael stays with the drives, we set to work covering the last show the next show. PP
tripod and I head off with the Zacuto Crossfire, from multiple angles. A Canon EOS 5D MkII is
EOS-1D MkIV and 35mm (nudging 50mm due to attached to the lighting rig with a monkey grip
the MkIV’s sensor size). I move freely in the above the photographers’ pit with a 24mm while
midst of the melee and there is a feeling of another 5D MkII is secured to the floor at the
detachment as I watch the proceedings through models’ feet covering the line-up and entrance to
the viewfinder. Again I follow my instincts and the catwalk. As the show is about to begin, Billy
just let the world unravel around me. I stand like jostles for a ladder to press ‘record’ in the Next month: Clive sits down to edit his work
an island in the middle of a surging tide of photographers’ pit (12 minutes’ maximum record from London Fashion Week.
celebrities, fashionistas, journalists and time on the 5D MkIIs) while Michael is on his
photographers. Turning, I move downstream hands and knees doing the same backstage.
circling interviews, conversations and looks of I have a ringside seat using the lightweight tripod
recognition followed by fashion kisses. and fluid head covering the show on a 24mm, GO ONLINE FOR MORE DISPATCHES
Behind me there is an explosion of flashes and 35mm and 50mm. It all works beautifully, the FROM CLIVE BOOTH
I turn to see Prime Minister David Cameron’s 24mm over the pit shows the sheer size and scale 33
Award-winning photojournalist Kieran Doherty travels around the world covering major sporting
and press events. Because he shoots in all light conditions, come rain or shine, reliable
cameras and lenses are a must and here he explains why his Nikon kit never lets him down.

The Burj Khalifa building in Dubai,

the tallest man-made structure in
the world. Kieran took this picture
from a viewing platform at
sunrise while shooting stills
on assignment for BBC’s
Human Planet series.

The first time I used Nikon kit was in 2008. could produce these kinds of images in this It is a testament to Nikon kit that I have
I was covering the tennis at Wimbledon and low light then I couldn’t go wrong. never once had to send a lens in for service.
photographing Andy Murray playing in My personal kit has taken knocks in all I have never had to say it needs tweaking, or
the evening. This was before the roof was different climates. In 2010 alone, I shot in it’s not focusing or it’s back focusing,
put into place with the artificial lights, Dubai, Canada, Barcelona and China, and I and I rely on the kit to get me out of trouble.
so it was quite dark. I took a couple of will use pretty much every lens I own when There are times in football matches, for
pictures while sitting on the side of the court on assignment. In my kit bag are Nikon D3s example, when you have to pick up the
and when I looked at them, I started to and D700 bodies with the following manual 70-200mm really quickly because there’s
laugh because what I saw was incredible. AIS lenses: a 24mm f/1.8, a 50mm f/1.2 and action in the goalmouth. Frankly, I don’t
I couldn’t believe the clarity and that an 85mm f/1.4. I also have these autofocus deserve to have the lenses and cameras
everything was so sharp. I was using Nikon’s lenses: the 50mm f/1.4G AF-S NIKKOR, the react as quickly as they do. They are so good
24-70mm and 70-200mm lenses. I thought 24-70mm f/2.8G AF-S ED Zoom NIKKOR and that I would say they pick up a little bit of
immediately to myself that if these lenses the 70-200mm AF-S NIKKOR f/2.8G ED VR II. ground for you. So if you are slow to react, as

West Ham goalkeeper Robert Green stretches to try to

save a shot from Arsenal’s Eduardo during the
FA Cup third-round match at West Ham’s Upton Park
ground in London on January 3, 2010.

soon as your finger touches that button and

the lens kicks in, it can almost save your 70-200mm
bacon. That for me is the ultimate test,  AF-S NIKKOR f/2.8G ED VR II
especially when working in stadiums where RRP: £2,085.99
the light is pretty grim and murky. They are
really sharp and as a photographer you can’t
ask for anything more.
If you want to talk about the toughness of
Nikon lenses, I covered the 2010 Ryder Cup
golf, where it rained for eight days. Apart

24-70mm f/2.8G AF-S ED Zoom NIKKOR
from some fogging on an LCD screen and to RRP: £1,565.99
a lens because I forgot to take it out of my
bag when I returned to my hotel room, I did
not encounter any problems with the bodies BIOGRAPHY
or lenses I used. This is incredible, bearing From 1993 to 2008, Kieran Doherty worked
in mind that every time I took out the camera as a freelance and staff photographer for
to check an image it got soaked. the Reuters News Agency. Today he is
For my street photography, when I am not commissioned to cover major press and
assigned to shoot for anybody I use my range sports events, and produce documentary
of prime lenses. I always use a 50mm for work the world over. His images have
street photography and I have two lenses. featured in and on the covers of many
One is the old f/1.2 and the other is the new major international journals and
autofocus version – the f/1.4G AF-S NIKKOR magazines, including TIME, Newsweek,
– which is instant. It’s solid, but so light and Stern, National Geographic, the New York

great value. The quality is there; as soon as Times Magazine and the Sunday Times
you touch the button, everything comes into Magazine. Most recently he was
focus. The primes are great if you want to be commissioned by the BBC to shoot stills to
a little less obtrusive, but I never thought I The results I get from Nikon cameras and accompany the Human Planet television
would ever ‘shout from the rooftops’ as lenses are instant, even in low light. They do series. In 2010 he took first place in the
much as I have done about how great the exactly what they say on the tin. news category of the Press Photographer’s
zoom lenses are, in particular the 24-70mm For more information about the kit Kieran Year awards.
and the 70-200mm. uses, please visit
diary 1st “Whilst Peter has shown an increased
dedication to photography and has produced
a good portfolio of work for interview, his
overall attitude tends to be one of indifference,
half dozen within a few months. Checking the
list, fewer than 70 recipients still have their job.
I say a mental goodbye to the days of jollies
masquerading as stories, visits to a town
flippancy and at times complacency. dedicated to Superman and foam parties at Club
Unless Peter grows up a little in the very near Med, and I go out with a smile. The stamps bore

This month, Peter Dench, future and works hard in all his subjects
he will soon find himself out in the cold world
my cheesy pate next to a billowing Union flag
courtesy of the
the award-winning surrounded by students who leave him standing.”
Words as relevant now as they were 21 years ago.
service: ‘Smilers – Share a special moment.’

photojournalist finds that Keen to know her progress, I Google Virginia

Bolton, my former A-level photography teacher.
self-imploding magazines I discover eight used copies of her book Focus on
Photography for sale at a penny on Amazon,
and shrinking expense but nothing else. My mum has retired and is

accounts mean things doing what mums do best, sorting things out.
In my home town of Weymouth there are three

just ain’t what they used boxes of my life needing rescue, including this
college report. Flicking through the viewed-once
to be in the world of magazines it’s clear just how much editorial

professional photography. 8th I’m hanging my LoveUK exhibition at

On the plus side there’s creative ad agency Archibald Ingall Stretton in
time for Valentine’s Day and pop along to the
always a launch party just offices to assess the space. Afterwards, I have

around the corner... three hours to occupy before a long-anticipated

private view of an important Eve Arnold

welcome to the world of a retrospective at the Chris Beetles Fine

Photographs Gallery in Swallow Street. The sun
sometime working pro. is out. Resisting the urge to imbibe I start
snapping the street. It feels as if I’m trespassing
all over iN-PUBLIC member and street
photographer David Solomons’ Up West project.
While stalking red scarves around Carnaby Street
a Hexar AF sneaks into view. It’s iN-PUBLIC
member and street photographer David Solomons
shooting his Up West project. We start one of
those twitchy conversations photographers
often have with one another where no one is
really paying attention; eyes and wrists
photography has changed. A 1999 Marie Claire a flick to the colours that pass and the people who
whacking 426 pages, a 1998 GQ a healthy 321. wear them. David is gracious enough to let me
The format is big and the pages are jammed crash his drinks meeting but something odd
with adverts for PalmPilots, pre-Viagra remedies happens: I decline. I’m enjoying myself and
and photographs of Gail Porter with hair. continue to play peek-a-boo with the sun as we
My contributions failed to save some of the bounce up and down Piccadilly before I
Above, clockwise: Peter, Grace and Marcus Bleasdale publications: Frank, The Face, Wish and Nova all finally succumb and head up to the fifth-floor bar
enjoy the snow in Oslo; party dances get under way at gone. It’s poignant tipping them into recycle. in Waterstone’s Bookstore. If I ever have a
the swimming pool, Club Med, Kemer, Turkey; catching Today what were probably my last editorial lover of advanced years who enjoys the
the sun in Carnaby Street, London; the first foam party
mail-outs will reach their destination. From habit Daily Express and a good royal wedding this is
of the week in full swing, Club Med, Kemer, Turkey;
two male visitors to the CLA Game Fair lie down for a I ordered 200 postcards. Three immediate the ideal venue to take them. Looks like many of
rest in front of Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire. commissions would usually follow, plus another the men at the tables agree. The walls are

decorated with the covers of 40 years of
Pulitzer Prize winners. I scribble some down.
The woman next to me asks if I’m a writer. I snort
derisively. Then say yes. For a second I think
she wants to caress my head in her leathery nape;
her friends turn up and the moment fades.
It’s opening time at Chris Beetles and I
jittery-flit moth-like towards the gallery door,
swerve sharply and compose myself around the
corner. My legs bow, the table I glanced inside
was groaning with fizz. Breathe, skip back round
and nip through the door. No name or invite
check, they let anyone in these days. A man views
the work seated, by scooting round in a desk
chair. Another prods me out the way with his
walking stick. The bubbles are introduced to my
palate and I acquaint myself with the work,

some of it familiar, some not. In a fantasy

moment I rehearse purchasing Bar Girl in a
Brothel in the Red Light District, Havana, 37
“It’s the director of the 2011 Visa pour l’Image festival of photojournalism, Jean-François Leroy,
with confirmation that they would like to exhibit England Uncensored. This is big news.” Peter Dench
Cuba, 1954 and check the price, £2,800. It’s one Soho of former Home Secretary and MP The ladies call him Mr Darcy. Many call
of the cheaper prints. Marilyn Monroe During the Jacqui Smith. I breeze past presenter Clare him Captain Congo. Others call him friend.
Filming of The Misfits, Nevada, 1960 is a Balding and into the BBC’s Henry Wood House I simply call him Bleasdale. Marcus Bleasdale.
busty £17,500. Most I talk with think them a fair where we are to meet. While Jacqui is having I first met Bleasdale when he joined the IPG
price. The red dots are out and at least four her make-up done I get a call delivering news agency, of which I was already a member, in
have stuck. I check my lapel for a scarlet disc. that is as significant as winning a World Press 2002. I think he will concur that he benefited
I decide to leave when my camera bag dominoes Photo Award. I’ve only ever spontaneously from my tutelage. It’s satisfying to see him doing
an empty glass into a terracotta army of others. shouted out loud for joy three times in adult life so well and progress to a point where I was only
I momentarily detect the spirit of Roy Castle and and, to the surprise of the office, release a on the subs’ bench at his wedding. Winner of
Norris McWhirter chortling their approval. shattering fourth. It’s the director of the 2011 World Press Photo of the Year 2005 Finbarr
I hold my nerve and let the lady trying to stand Visa pour l’Image festival of photojournalism, O’Reilly shot the stills. Current Magnum
them up take the blame, doff an imaginary Jean-François Leroy, with confirmation president Jonas Bendiksen was on video duty.
cap to the £8,000 Barmaid, New York City, 1950s, that they would like to exhibit England Now with the VII photographic agency,
grab my coat and burp into the evening. Uncensored. This is big news. Leroy ends Bleasdale has got me a gig teaching a workshop
the call with those magic words, “Welcome at the Bilder Nordic School of Photography in
12th Attend the first anniversary party of the to the club.” Oslo, where he lives. Realising that I’m heading
Third Floor Gallery in Cardiff – turn to to one of the most expensive cities in the
the six-page feature in this issue to read of the 18th TAXVAT-Man has cleaned me out and is world I log on to to see if I
experience. Wait! Finish the diary first. still squeezing. I check my Air Miles from more can raise enough for a round and head off
prolific times and book an escape. It is time to the airport. I arrive bearing the requested
17th The editorial mail-out has tweaked the to go on a journey to see a man. Not just any maximum quota of duty free and series eight
interest of Stylist magazine; a portrait in man, but a man with a fine head of hair. and nine of Silent Witness.

“The theme of the workshop is Irony and Humour in Norwegian Life dench
and Society. I show them a cross-section from my work on England...
and end by reading a few extracts from the Diary to see if it
translates and am pleased the laughs are loud.” Peter Dench
their stride. I check the slow-blinking lids of 10 days in Uganda. After ice-skating, hot
ice-cool Catrine on the front row for a written chocolate and waffles we move on to the
message. Nothing. She just seems tired and International Museum of Children’s Art; I pick up
idly jabs at her phone. The theme of the workshop the entrance fee and make a donation.
is Irony and Humour in Norwegian Life and Under the Chinese masks Bleasdale talks about
Society. I show them a cross-section from my an orphanage he and a bunch of Congo-conscious
work on England, from Dagenham estates journalists have set up (
to Blackpool hen parties, country house events to feeding, medicating and educating around
Banbury Hobby Horse Festival, and end by 134 kids from past or current conflicts. He had
reading a few extracts from the Diary to see if it started to regale me with a story of shooting
translates and am pleased the laughs are loud. backstage at Marc Jacobs during New York
Skidding round to the Dubliner Pub on a high Fashion Week when a nun called from Congo;
I get the drinks in. Two pints of Guinness and she was having difficulty raising the $65 tax
two packets of crisps please, £22.59. My legs start required to get six cows across a lake intended
doing an involuntary charleston. I’ve never taken to provide milk for the orphanage. Before he
so long to finish a pint. can finish he beats off to catch the start of an
African drum lesson, you can take Bleasdale

out of Africa...

22nd Today I’m back at the Bilder Nordic School

to assess the work of the students. I kick off the
morning with a YouTube video of Jahn Teigen’s
1978 Eurovision Song Contest nul pointer
Above: Jonas Meek Strømman receives Mil Etter Mil (Mile After Mile) just to show that
a signed Dench for the best workshop project at the Norwegians are capable of being hilarious. Of the
Bilder Nordic School of Photography in Oslo.
40 students who attended my presentation, 20
Right: One of the images shown to the students at the
School of Photography, Oslo. have returned and 17 produced work. I ask
Opposite page: A father holds his son’s hand while Sebastian what’s his excuse and float the
carrying a gun in the other as they walk through the idea of getting the non-shooters to sing a chorus
grounds at the War & Peace Show, Kent. This image will
20th The family have joined me for a mini-break along with Jahn: “My best friend’s brother took
be on show at Visa pour l’Image, Perpignan.
and while we watch the girls ice skate I an overdose and his wife hanged herself.”
complain to Bleasdale about having to pick up the I let thoughts of punishment pass. Later, while
19th Arriving at the £8,000-a-year School of cab fare on my Jacqui Smith all-in-fee reflecting on the quality of work from the Bilder
Photography the nerves aren’t bad but I postpone commission and ask him about his recent 21-day Nordic School I find myself once again out in the
breakfast just in case. Last night, over venison at trip to north-east Congo on assignment for cold world surrounded by students who will
the Crown Prince’s favourite restaurant (I was Human Rights Watch and the Pulitzer Center on probably leave me standing; I assume an attitude
tempted by the braised ox cheek in beer) Crisis Reporting. He flatly explains spending of indifference, flippancy and at times
Bleasdale had warned me: “Dench, you’d better $17,000 on flights and only eight of those days complacency, board the plane, sit back and suck
be funny.” This morning I don’t feel funny. being shoot days. Of having to fly with back the British Airways Malbec, Mil Etter Mil
Breakfast with Bleasdale is not always an motorcycles and a generator before seven-hour Etter Mil... PP
amusing start to the day. All the hope and light rides through the bush. On one ride an
from this dawn is juiced into a tale of Congo accident smashed his knee and chewed the skin
rape and child soldiers. I stare out the window at off his elbow down to the bone. Two days
the residence across the road and applaud the from decent medical care he patched himself up
Norwegians’ aversion to net curtains. It’s a and finished the job. Not wanting to alarm
Peeping Peter paradise. “Are you a nation of tall, his wife, the first she learned of his ordeal was as
blond, fluffy-jumper wearing, whale-killing, he crawled the stairs to his apartment 10kg You can hear Peter in person each month
on the Professional Photographer podcast,

pillaging sea warriors?” may not be the most lighter and urinating blood. Three trips to A&E
conventional question to kick off a presentation followed before he headed off on a three-week available on iTunes or on our website at
but most of the ensemble seem to take it in trip to the Central African Republic and 39
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To make sure you don’t get left behind in the rapidly changing world of DSLR
film making, John Campbell brings you the latest news, the most exciting films
and the best kit from this brave new world that is transforming our industry.
ONES TO WATCH find disturbing. It is a stark reminder of the
world we live in, and how most of us are
TILT-SHIFT-TASTIC sheltered from this desperate and awful side of
 Sometimes being a film maker means society, leaving the victims ignored. It also
you must think on your feet; having to turn bad shows how DSLR film making is changing the
circumstances into beneficial ones is all too way we make films, mixing green screen,
common an occurrence. After turning up at the animation, photography and live action to
Formula DRIFT motorsport competition create a truly thought-provoking piece.
at a racing circuit in Sonoma, California,
photographer Joe Ayala discovered that he was 0434
not on the media guest list. Not wanting to THE POWER OF THE MEDIUM
waste his trip, Joe decided that instead of The Journey is a film by Scottish film maker
close-up action shots he would try a different
perspective and make a film of the cars from
Richard Jobson, narrated by the actress Emma
Thompson, and shot on a Canon EOS 5D ON THE GRAPEVINE///////////
a distance. This, coupled with his recent MkII. Watching it will reaffirm the reasons
interest in tilt-shift lenses, has produced why most of us get into film and its power is
Rumour has it that Canon is
a stunning and unique film. The way the obvious to any viewer. The film tells the story about to launch a new camera,
tilt-shift lenses make everything look like toys
works amazingly well in this particular
of a woman who has been trafficked from
eastern Europe and forced to become a
the much-anticipated EOS 5D
circumstance. I think the film will inspire a lot prostitute in a north London basement room. MkIII or 6D. Suggestions are it
of DSLR users to experiment. Be warned – this film contains strong violent may offer a 24-megapixel and sexual scenes that some people may
sensor and a dual DIGIC 4
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SOFTWARE software called DualEyes is now
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A GLANCE AT DUALEYES automatically sync and cut the audio 1.04 million dots. This may
Even though the images created recording into clips that match the also have the advantage of
when using a DSLR are stunning, the video. The beauty of this software is
fact the audio is somewhat lacking that it is standalone and can be used being a touch screen, which
becomes pretty evident when you in conjuction with any NLE would make it the first
start working with it. The preferred (non-linear editing) system from
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 During the protests in Egypt, we saw
 Opening the door for all DSLR film
FROM MODEST BEGINNINGS again how in places where political unrest makers, Danfung Dennis, a photojournalist
 Shot on a Canon EOS 7D, the indie movie harbours fears of outside interference, the turned film maker, has won the grand
Like Crazy, directed by Drake Doremus, was ability to shoot covertly and discreetly on a jury prize in the documentary category at
given the US dramatic competition grand jury DSLR comes in handy. Sky News shooters the Sundance Film Festival.
prize at the Sundance Film Festival, and used the Canon EOS 5D MkII again to film His film, Hell and Back Again, which
English lead actress Felicity Jones won the remarkable footage of the unfolding violence. was shot on a Canon EOS 5D MkII, also
special jury prize for her performance. Apparently, the cameraman just used the EF picked up the world cinematography
The film has since been sold to Paramount 24-105mm IS kit lens with no rig or Z-finder, award for documentary film making.
Pictures for a massive $4 million. and the audio was recorded on a Tascam This documentary follows a US marine
Inspiring stuff for us DSLR film makers. DR-100 recorder and a Sennheiser mic. fighting in Afghanistan and his subsequent rehabilitation at home after being injured.
0488 0401

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external Blu-ray writer with USB 3.0. essential. The VFM-056W/WP from TVLogic is a light (300g) and
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relatively low cost of £179. The PX-LB950UE and a wide viewing angle of 170º. The VFM-056W/WP is perfect for both indoor and
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rushes. However, these two mixers both cost less than supply that comes with the mixer.
KEY FEATURES: £500 and come with a carry-case. The MX422 (centre left) is its big brother.
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Need to put a face to a name, get the background story, the right advice and the inside
track on how to get commissioned? This month we hear from Roger Tooth, head of photography
at The Guardian and The Observer to hear his thoughts on what it takes to
become a photojournalist in 2011 and how the platforms of news delivery are changing.

Roger Tooth
Head of photography: The Guardian,

The Observer and

Career history: How have things changed since you joined Is that because more people are now
Photographer: Hackney Gazette The Guardian? photographers?
Photographer: IPC magazines Well, the number of products that we do has Yes it is, but also because there are more ways for
Freelance photographer grown. When I came here there were three picture people to get pictures to us. It is a good thing to
Assistant picture editor: The Guardian editors, a researcher and a secretary, and now have more choice, although we do wade through
Picture editor: The Guardian between the two newspapers there are about 30 such a lot of images we’re not interested in.
Head of photography: The Guardian, of us working on desks. That was before For example, if you’re working on news you’re
The Observer and The Guardian had a weekend magazine and not interested in a sports picture but first thing in
before they bought The Observer. It was a simpler the morning you might find yourself ploughing
place although, of course, the communications through American baseball pictures. It’s more
were worse. If we wanted a picture taken in time-consuming but actually the standards have
Manchester we used to have to get it wired down gone up hugely in those years.
“’s simpler to tweak a and then film was sent down on a Red Star train.
photograph in Photoshop In a way things were more difficult then, because Why do you think that the standard of
of bad communications. Now, with FTP and photography you are seeing has risen?
than it was to tweak it in the photographers shooting on digital cameras with I think it’s due to the fact that these days many
darkroom – so everything is Apple Macs in the back of their cars, in a way it’s
easier. In terms of images there’s a big difference
people go to college and study. They might have
gone to study art or graphics but they take time
so much more accessible to in numbers so if you worked over a weekend in out to study the art of photography, the aesthetics
photographers.” Roger Tooth the late 1980s you might get 200 pictures to look
at; we’re now getting around 15,000 to 20,000
of it. Possibly it’s also because the craft side
is easier – it’s simpler to tweak a photograph in
pictures a day. Photoshop than it was to tweak it in the 45
darkroom – so everything is so much more
accessible to photographers. We’ve got someone
in the office who trained on a regional paper in
Scotland – a snapper – but the work he does now
is of magazine quality. That’s what we now expect
in news on a daily basis as well as in editorial.

Do you think education is preparing

photographers for the real world?
No, I think students have unrealistic expectations
when they leave college. I think people are doing
the wrong courses. I recently gave a talk at
a careers event and my take was that people

shouldn’t do photographic courses. Instead they
should be studying, for example, fine art when
they leave school. Someone asked if that’s what
everyone in the industry thought and I replied that
no, it was probably just me and Lord Snowdon! are contracted up to four days a week. When we would have [formally] converged more quickly
I definitely think a first degree should be an art need a bit more help we’ll go out looking for here than it has done, but both myself and the
degree rather than a photographic one. [Taking a photographers or I’ll remember people I’ve seen, multi-media editor are busy in our own areas, so
photography degree] is too narrow and I suspect but we haven’t done that for a while. I get it hasn’t happened yet. I lend him photographers
that students are spending too much time doing photographers contacting me every two hours! when he needs people.
projects rather than the groundwork. I think
there are two problems: one is that people aren’t What do you look for when you see new work? Do you have any other advice for prospective
trained in the basics of photography; the other I like clean, graphic, simple pictures because I photojournalists?
is that they aren’t trained graphically, so they look at it from a newspaper point of view. I think they have to be prepared to work around
don’t understand how their photography might be The other thing I look for in photographers is the clock and not be looking for a nine-to-five
used, which leads to a bit of naivety. Also, you politeness, because if we do commission someone job. They must be fairly self-starting; for example
can’t just go to college for three years and come they are representing the newspaper. We’re very if they go abroad we can’t really help from the
out and say you’re a photojournalist. You need to keen on The Guardian’s reputation being held in office but, actually, I think most photojournalists
get more experience. fairly high esteem, so I’m quite careful about who like that independence. We tend to rely on them to
I might send on a particular job. We’ve got a organise themselves and just get on with it.
Which courses do you think those hoping couple of women on contract, which I think is
to become photojournalists should study? really important. You could be sending a Do you think there are any misconceptions
I think people should probably do a general art photographer round to shoot a female in her home about photojournalism?
course and think about looking at things, how and perhaps she’s not comfortable with a male, so The thing I’m slightly cynical about, after all
they look and how they translate on to pieces of it’s good to have that option. Some people these years, is when people say, “I want to cover
paper or computer screens. You need a general telephone us and say they are very nervous about this in this part of the world.” Sometimes I think,
feeling for imagery. If photographers really want having their picture taken, so sometimes it is best “Are we just buying you an air ticket to go off
to do photojournalism I think they should do a to send a female photographer. It sounds sexist to complete your gap year?” I’ve always been
one or two-year postgraduate course, possibly but I think it’s the way things are. The personality keen on people documenting Britain. With all the
with a bit of photography in between. of a photographer is important, things can go cuts, it’s a really good time to turn round and
wrong very quickly on a shoot. It’s horses for document what’s happening in this country, on
Do you build relationships with courses really. Of course on the news side we’re your own doorstep. Why don’t we look at our
photojournalists or rely on submitted images? so rushed it’s almost a taxi rank service. It’s more own country for a bit? Although we have foreign
On a daily basis, just to get the website out every a case of who is available. coverage we’re a UK paper. For example, if
day, we rely on our staff people and the wire we want a picture of a closed factory it’s actually
agencies. The Gettys, Reuters and APs of the How is convergence affecting the way quite hard to find a picture like that.
world drive the news side of things now, they you work? People don’t turn the camera on their own
produce the work we need to get the newspapers I think photographers have to understand that they communities enough.
out. Most of the commissioning that we do now is must embrace it. For me the question is whether
for portraiture, which we do a lot, given that we photographers end up doing video driven by So it’s not necessary to take a gap year and
are a features and arts newspaper. a photographer’s eye or producing more inspired travel the globe to become a photojournalist?
video; I think there’s a difference between the Certainly not, quite the opposite really. I’m sure
Given that you have staff photographers do two but I don’t know if that’s been worked out yet. the French are doing it in their own country.
you build relationships with freelancers? At the moment we have a separate video The current climate feels very 1980s to me,
We have five photographers on staff full-time and department but I don’t know if it will stay like it’s like we’re in a Thatcher era. Now is the time
we have another set of regular freelancers who that forever; I suspect it won’t. I thought we to document Britain. PP

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tell us what you think at
Dear Professional Photographer, was (and always is) great. The New
I enjoyed your article on personal Kid in Town was especially relevant
projects [March issue], we’ve all for me as I have really started to
seen them and some certainly have embrace the idea of blogging as a
more success than others – generally form of personally promoting
speaking, deservedly so. However, I myself. Also the idea of showing
wanted to ask you to consider a hundreds of people my work
follow-up article highlighting the through a blog rather than it sitting
importance of the ‘other’ sort of in a folder on my hard drive is
personal project. Dewi Lewis picked making me a better photographer.
up on it [“A lot of photographers I found this month’s issue
will consider the term ‘personal extremely relevant; your publication
work’ simply as the work they do for is providing me monthly with
non-commercial reasons.”] I was insightful information about the
surprised you didn’t include more state of the industry. I'm also
on that in the article, but understand enjoying the little gems Grant Scott
space is limited and ideas flow I know it inside out now. I use the another part of the photography writes up on his tumblr blog
aplenty! I was expecting more work for marketing, promotion, industry. Best of luck with the [].
because I’ve been doing the same networking, exhibitions etc and I’ve magazine, it’s an enjoyable read and They make me consider things daily
subject (around professional work) even been approached by a publisher is a useful tool for someone like me about the industry and my work that
since 2004 and, for me, it’s been the about getting it published. One of who is trying to find his feet as a I might not have done otherwise.
most positive thing I could have the biggest benefits I see that could professional photographer. James Whitty, via email
done. And now, because of it, I’ve come out of it is that if you can Darran Armstrong, via email
been asked to quote for a massive justify it in print, the families of Correction
international advertising campaign people who undertake such projects Dear Professional Photographer, In the Professional Photographer of
for a well-known company. are likely to be a little more Just wanted to say I really enjoyed the Year Awards 2010 feature in
I think this would be a fantastic understanding and supportive. I have the article The New Kid in Town in the January issue, we incorrectly
idea as a follow-up: with a positive, struggled and fought with my wife the March issue along with Clive stated that Irene Frowley was
encouraging tone and first-hand for the time it’s taken me to do this Booth’s article about establishing commended in the still-life section
beneficial advice; all of the work; she could never understand and maintaining your online when, in fact, it was Irene van der
photographers you speak to month the point of doing something that identity. In fact the whole magazine Meijs. We apologise for the error. PP
on month will have some degree of didn’t pay – speculative work, even
experience in this (like your banger though I had a clear idea of how In February we ran an online
racing project, February issue). useful it could be. Now, after seven competition in association with
We all need an arena to test years, she is starting to get it, Canon to give away 20 unique
ourselves in; as professionals we but we still fight over it occasionally. accreditation passes to shoot a
want to keep our eye in, our skills Help us out sir! Jaeger show at London Fashion
current and ask ourselves important Bill Bradshaw, via email Week at Somerset House.
questions. You can’t ‘play’ in the We asked you to show us how you
same way within the boundaries of Dear Professional Photographer, saw the world and more than
commercial work (well, you can but I just wanted to drop you a quick 150 of you responded, uploading February our winners came to
it’s risky!) I was advised in my final email to say thank you for the online your images to the competition London from as far as Belgium
year of college that ‘it’s a good idea Shoot the Catwalk competition gallery on our website. and Romania. All the winners
to have something to keep going [to shoot a show at London Fashion Passes for London Fashion Week got the chance to shoot the
back to’ – a personal project of your Week]. It was my first time are highly prized with only 200 rehearsal as well as the show
choosing that you do in your spare shooting a fashion show, so it was photographers granted access itself and you can see some

time and is always on the back an interesting experience to shoot to the catwalk pit, so it was a of their images in our fashion
burner. When I finished, I found something different to what I am fantastic opportunity. On 20 gallery on the PP website.
something that interested me and used to and get a small taste of 49

The Photographic Sopwell House

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Professional photographer Ted Sabarese
publishes a blog in which he tries to work
out how other photographers’ images were

lit and offers his own theory on how the

shoot went. This month he brings his lighting
experience and limited drawing
skills to Rhianna and Michael Thompson. MICHAEL THOMPSON / GQ USA

MICHAEL THOMPSON/RIHANNA COVER, GQ USA, JAN 2010 camera right. A medium soft box at f/5.6 (-1 stop) sits 4ft to camera
Rihanna may currently be entangled in a dab of plagiarism controversy left and 8ft high. Two white umbrellas at f/11 (+1 stop) light the white
over her latest video, but that doesn’t take away from the utter background from both camera right and left, in the rear. PP
sexiness seeping from this January 2010 GQ USA cover. Michael’s soft
backlighting paints a glamorous yet angelic picture of this rock
and roll siren. Five strobes did the trick.
Turn to page 54 for our interview with Michael Thompson.
Camera: Hasselblad H3D-39 and 100mm lens, handheld 10ft back.
Shot at 1/125sec, f/8, ISO 50.
Remember, this is called ‘Guess’ the Lighting. Therefore, all lighting,
Lighting: The main light sources come from the sides and behind.
camera, lens, grip, f-stop, shutter speed etc information may not
A large soft box at f/16 ½ (+2½ stops) is positioned behind a framed,
hold up in a court of law. There is a lot of guesswork in guessing.
one-stop diffusion silk to camera left and behind Rihanna.
Another large softbox at f/8 ½ (+ ½ stop) with framed silk sits similarly to 51
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exposure Images that have us thinking, talking and debating...

We spend a lot of our time here at

Professional Photographer suggesting
to wedding photographers that they
shouldn’t be looking at wedding
photography for inspiration but at the
best of the world’s fashion photography.
It’s not always met with understanding,
but to help us in our quest comes one of
the world’s leading fashion
photographers, Ellen Von Unwerth
(and PP bad girl – you can see our
November 2010 issue to find out why!),
shooting the Spring/Summer 2011
campaign for leading wedding dress
designer Jenny Packham. We applaud
the collaboration and can’t wait to see
similar partnerships. Anyone ready for
Peter Dench shooting weddings?
Visit to
see all the images. PP

He shoots beauty, fashion and portraits for the world’s most
prestigious magazines and commercial clients, learnt his craft
assisting Irving Penn and has just released the second
monograph of his work but, as Michael Thompson tells

PP Editor Grant Scott, he has paid his dues getting to the top.
Singer Joss Stone. 55
Grant: Michael, I first became aware of things were done a little differently. He took on my own and branched out into my own style
your work in the early 1990s when it was a lot of chances and went outside the box, so it as the years went on.
a major factor in the re-launch of American was very interesting to be part of that group of GS: Was Penn a great influence before you
Harper’s Bazaar under the art direction movers and shakers. I was part of a group went to work for him?
of the great Fabien Baron. How did that of new, young photographers there, kids in their MT: Yes, I had his books, along with Richard
come about? 20s who caused a big shake-up. Avedon’s and all the other big guys, like Helmut
Michael: I started in 1991 doing beauty images GS: Your work at that time and ever since Newton. But I was just dreaming, you know,
for Allure magazine in New York and then I has had a very clean and precise aesthetic living on the west coast looking at these images.
started doing the same for Bazaar. I was known to it. It felt fresh. So when I knocked on his door in New York and
as a beauty photographer and I didn’t do any MT: Yeah, coming out after three-and-a-half years he answered the door, not an assistant, I almost
fashion or celebrity images, because celebrity at Penn’s studio I was obviously very influenced fell on the floor. Every day I worked with him
work wasn’t that big a deal then. So I was by his work and initially mine was very similar to and saw him I would have to pinch myself and go,
shooting beauty for them but with Fabien there Penn’s. I kind of stuck with that, then went off “Oh my God, that’s Irving Penn.”
GS: That’s an incredible start to a career,
from working with Penn to working for
Harper’s Bazaar and Fabien Baron.
MT: It was amazing; I’d driven all of my
belongings from the west coast in a rented truck
to New York with my girlfriend who is now my
wife. When I’d arrived I didn’t have any leads or
contacts so I just started doing what everybody
does and began making calls. Penn was
someone who agreed to give me an interview.
GS: David Bailey once said to me the most
valuable Avedon book was the one he hadn’t
signed, because he was very much on the
scene and available but Penn was reclusive.
MT: I had an interview with Avedon too and
they couldn’t have been more polar opposites
in personality. They were both geniuses
but they went about it in such different ways.
GS: After your work appeared in Bazaar you
had a pretty meteoric rise, because it was
so influential internationally at the time.
MT: I think it was just the clean and chic look of
Bazaar at the time that people liked. Fashion is
very much like that, you know, there are always
things that shake it up. In fashion everyone is so
blasé about everything, they’ve seen everything a
million times, so they need to be shocked now
and then. Bazaar was a great shock back then.
In the early 1990s the economy in the States
was not unlike how it is now in the sense that
people were not willing to take chances and it
wasn’t until later on in that decade that things
started to pick up financially; when that happens
people love to take risks because they have a lot
of money to take them. Now people are holding
on to their wallets. It was a great time to start in
the early 1990s, however, because I was going

Left: Actress Gwyneth Paltrow.

Opposite page: Actress Milla Jovovich.
“In fashion everyone
is so blasé about
everything, they’ve
seen everything a
million times, so they
need to be shocked
now and then.
Bazaar was a great
shock back then.”
Michael Thompson
I have always found it hard as a photographer to
stay with one style, because I think I would get
bored working in one way every day. I try to move
around, I just think there are different lightings,
feelings, stories and locations that I want to do.
GS: For me your work is defined by the
attention you give to the shapes that you
make with your subjects. You always seem
to be searching for absolute perfection.
MT: Right, that’s the nice thing about doing a
book, you get the chance to critique your own
work. You can see threads running through the
work and growth.
GS: Why was this the right time to produce
your second book?
MT: I knew that when I did my first book in ’05
that I didn’t want to do a celebrity book, I wanted
to do an all-encompassing book, but as time went
on I thought I should do a portrait book. I actually
decided to do one four years ago but by the time
you get things together – a publisher, everybody
to sign for picture usage – before you know it, it’s
three-and-a-half years later. But during that time
I’ve shot a lot of images, so the book has changed
its look from my initial concept.
GS: Pretty much every photographer wants
to see their work in book form but it can
be hard to judge when it is the right time to
actually begin to compile one.
MT: For me it’s become more important than ever
to see my work in book form. I used to go into
Rizzoli in New York or any bookstore and spend
hours looking at the images. That’s how I fell in
from an assistant’s salary I didn’t see that grainy picture, so many amazing images are just love with photography and I wanted to come back
things were at an economic low. If I made $1,000 that. I always say you can’t duplicate a moment. to that. There are a lot of great things about the
for the day then I was happy, whereas the You can have a beautifully lit, beautifully digital age but there is nothing like holding and
photographers who had been around for a while technical photo but if it doesn’t have that feeling turning a page in a book. Also, as photographers
thought that was nothing and were all upset. behind it, then it’s really nothing. So I always all the things we work for and our images appear
In the beginning people were hiring me like try to marry the two together. It takes a little bit in are disposable, so it’s nice to have the image
they do now, on the basis of what they see in the of planning but I try to leave myself open. In the the way you envisioned it with no type all over it;
magazines. I’m fine with that. I worked a lot for very beginning everything was very controlled, I’m sure every photographer feels that way.
the beauty houses in the beginning, which was I was so nervous about getting the image I had GS: It also proves that we actually existed!
great for me financially so I was able to pay my everything planned out. Now I do the opposite. MT: Exactly.
rent. There weren’t a heck of a lot of beauty I have great assistants and equipment, and GS: Your career was well-established
photographers so it was a nice place to step in and have enough confidence now after 20 years to before the advent of digital capture but a lot
say, “Hey, maybe I can be important in this area” just let things roll. of the beauty work created today relies
and then move on into fashion. There were so GS: But there is a Michael Thompson eye; heavily on post-production manipulation.
many people doing it and there still are. I can always spot one of your pictures, they How do you feel about that?
GS: Your work is very controlled and always are so resolved and have such an incredible MT: I think in my group of photographers I was
involves a very high level of technical ability, attention to detail. one of the last to start working with a digital

which you seem to bring to all of the areas MT: Thank you, that’s a nice compliment. In the
you work in, even the ‘caught’ moment. 1960s and 1970s Penn was known for his white
MT: Yes, yes, I guess that’s me being a Virgo. backgrounds and in the 1970s and 1980s Bill Above: Actress Kate Hudson.
There’s nothing wrong with an out-of-focus, King was known for working with movement but Opposite page: Actress Selma Blair.



“...I have always found
it hard as a photographer
to stay with one style,
because I think I
would get bored working
in one way every day.
I try to move around,
I just think there
are different lightings,
feelings, stories and
locations that I want to do.”
Michael Thompson

Actress Julianne Moore. 61
camera. I didn’t want to move over just to say I lets them have access to the screen, they become instantly; if they haven’t been published in the
was shooting digitally but also because I didn’t knowledgeable on what is possible and realise first two years they’re ready to give up. You can
think it had the qualities of film. So I waited and they can see the images as they are shot. But I ask anybody in any profession who’s successful
waited and hung on and hung on. People were used to work the same way with Polaroids. and you’ll find out that they’ve been working
coming to the studio and going, “Oh, you’re still I would look at them with my assistant behind at it for a long time. When I started assisting, if I
shooting film and Polaroids, oh okay.” I’d been a curtain and only show the celebrity one if had to polish shoes I would do it, I didn’t really
retouching digitally for a long time, but on I was happy with it. But I would never pull it out care. Just being around a photographic studio
scanned negatives; it wasn’t until three or four of the camera and show them it. was enough for me. I worked for a catalogue
years ago that I started capturing in digital format. GS: You were slow moving into digital but photographer for three years in Los Angeles
I’m fine with it now, it’s just like having a new are you going to be as slow to move into before I had even set foot in Penn’s studio.
camera. But the one thing that will never change creating moving images? He was very busy and I was able to cut my teeth
is the way in which you look at light and how MT: Past history would suggest that I will be, but in the industry, and because of the knowledge
you find light. That’s not going to change, no if you look at the iPad, where you have the mini I gained from him I was able to get the Penn job.
matter how many bells and whistles you have. snippet movies of a photo shoot, that’s going to You wouldn’t think that a catalogue photographer
GS: Your way of seeing. have to be done by the photographer along with would relate to a Penn job but that’s how I got that
MT: Yes. Your way of seeing. It’s great that it the stills. I think that photographers are going to job, because when I met Penn he asked me about
allows you to work quickly, but there are have to become cinematographers, directors of all of the technical things that I knew and I was
drawbacks also. Everybody wants you to work photography and stills photographers all rolled up able to answer comfortably and became his first
faster and faster and then when you’re on the set into one. The client is not going to hire someone assistant. If I had come straight out of college
with a celebrity they want to see the screen. to come in and do that part of the photo session; wanting to work for Penn, he wouldn’t have hired
It takes the mystery out of the process a little bit. they’ll rely on the photographer to do everything. me and I know that for a fact.
GS: That’s an interesting point. I would GS: You often reference great paintings Even when I was assisting I would do
never show the subject the Polaroid when or classic photographic images in your work architecture photography just to find out how to
I was shooting celebrities and I won’t shoot and use them as inspiration. write an invoice and how to work with a client.
tethered for the same reason. I don’t MT: I’ve always looked to art for inspiration but I didn’t say, “I’m not interested in doing that.”
want the session to be judged on one frame. I think it started when I began working for I just said, “Hey, I could learn from this.” I was
How do you deal with that situation? French Vogue in the mid-1990s. That audience still lighting and composing things, it was related
MT: The good thing about having worked for a is very open to referencing images because they to what I wanted to do and I got a paycheck for it.
while is that you can pretty much say, “This is know the originals. You never know where things will lead so I would
how I work” and people respect that. You can tell GS: It’s a sophisticated readership. say, leave things open, don’t close that door,
the publicist to stay outside the shooting area and MT: Very and that was a big education for me. because you never know where that door leads.
I can tell the celebrity that I will show them GS: A lot of other photographers will look It’s easy to say what I do is easy, you know
something when I’m ready and they respect that. at your career and the work you get what I mean. In the beginning nobody knew who
I shoot with the monitor next to me because commissioned to do and think, “It’s okay for Michael Thompson was and even today that
I like to know what’s going on and one of the first him but that’s got no relevance to my life as happens. I shoot young actors and actresses who
things I did was to make a cardboard hood for a photographer.” Your position and work haven’t even heard of Penn or Avedon. You just
the screen that has a hole for me to look through can seem like an untouchable ivory tower to have to swallow your pride, be patient and have
and a little window at the side for my assistant to many photographers, with little relevance to the drive to keep close to what you believe in.
look through. Then when we’re ready and feel we the real world. How would you respond? You’re only as good as your last photograph.
have a nice image to show them that we want MT: There are so many photographers out there GS: I always say that after that last shot we
feedback on, we take the cover off the screen. that you should only do it if you really love it and are always unemployed.
It just pops off, then goes right back on again. put the effort into it. I can’t tell you how many MT: Right, maybe that’s why I’m doing this
GS: That sounds like a gadget you should times I’ve worked late into the night while I was book, so I can show it to people and say,
be copyrighting and selling as just plugging away but I never thought, “This is “Here, I’ve done this before, so please trust me.”
Michael Thompson approved kit. bullshit, this is not working.” I was enjoying it. GS: Professional photography is not a great
MT: Exactly, because without the cover everybody I was happy to do just one job and paying my rent place to have a big ego.
just looks at the screen and it becomes like was always my first goal. The next was to try to MT: Exactly. PP
watching TV; then the person being photographed get something published and it was these
starts thinking, “What are you looking at?” mini-goals leading up to the bigger picture which
and then they go to see and the shoot falls apart. made it seem possible. It’s like going on a trip.
The hood solves all of this. You have to look at the whole map to see your

GS: I think you’re outlining a problem that final destination, but the towns on the way are the
a lot of photographers will be familiar with. mini-goals to that destination. That’s important.
MT: The thing is that when the celebrity goes on Over the years I have never been afraid to work LEADING PHOTOGRAPHERS
another set with a different photographer who hard. Too many photographers want things WWW.PROFESSIONALPHOTOGRAPHER.CO.UK
Model Heidi Klum.
An independent gallery located at the top
of a period building in Cardiff is showcasing
some of the most exciting contemporary
photography in the UK. On its first birthday
Peter Dench catches up with the owners
of the Third Floor Gallery to discover if it
really is tough at the top.


An image from Maciej Dakowicz’s

Cardiff After Dark project.

Maciej Dakowicz is not comfortable. to be realised. Around £700 a month comes because of his matter-of-fact way of explaining
He presses a splayed hand hard into his face from donations, any shortfall is made up from how and when things should be done. There is no
and rubs. It’s not the disco ball lights the pockets of each proprietor. There is an nickname for the open-faced Bartosz; ‘The
peppering his face that is causing distress, Amazon wishlist that to date has provided an Smiler’ wouldn’t be inappropriate. Each team
it’s the questions. Maciej doesn’t like A4 multifunction mono laser printer, TV, member has no specific role. Tasks are taken as
questions and doesn’t like to answer them; professional trimmer, pair of scissors, tape and when by who has the time or most suitable
in fact he doesn’t like to talk much at all. dispenser, screwdriver set and some White Tack allegiance. Joni and Bartosz are perhaps better
We are at the Third Floor Gallery in Cardiff that
he launched with Joni Karanka (Bartosz Nowicki
joined some months later). Today is the
gallery’s first anniversary party. I ask Maciej
(pronounced mach-ic) what he enjoys about
running the TFG. He rubs harder: “Ask Joni.”
I’d arrived a few hours earlier. As I approached
the gallery, Joni and Maciej had parked up
outside with a car boot full of beer. It had taken
them three hours to choose it, checking for
the best deals. “Give us a hand, Peter.” No one is
beyond being asked to help and we take turns
to deliver the crates up 60 stairs past a taxi rank
and Indian dance class to the top-floor premises.
On 22 December 2009 I received an email from
Joni that said: “Dear Peter, I wonder if you’d
be interested in exhibiting loveUK in Cardiff.
Maciej Dakowicz and I are opening a
small photography gallery in February, and we
wanted something with a bit of a nice bang

to open up. Any reply is good for me, ranging

from interest to rejection with alternative
suggestions.” Feeling festive I answered in the
affirmative. A call from the considered and
unassuming Joni followed and the details required
softly spoken through a hybrid Finnish-Spanish (the sandwich board was a wishlist gift). with the PR and communication side of it,
accent. The gallery and exhibition opened on In the initial business plan, it was hoped the rent Maciej with the details, or as he would describe
12 February 2010 to a warm welcome from the would largely be funded by print sales from each it, “Dealing with the shit.”
Cardiff media and community. Located in exhibition. Collective sales so far fall short of Thirty-five people visited the exhibition on the
the Bay area of the city, a short bus ride from the double figures, which is surprising, because since first anniversary day, taking the estimated annual
centre, TFG sits comfortably opposite the the loveUK launch the list of exhibitors has number over 4,000. More than 50 guests are
Millennium Centre and the developing Mermaid been impressive, including David Solomons, jostling for position in the 60ft² gallery space
Quay. A sandwich board at the door of the Jocelyn Bain Hogg, Carolyn Drake, and Magnum tonight. It’s an open-door policy, invitations
period building, padlocked to the railings, quietly royalty David Hurn and Chris Steele-Perkins. were sent via social networks and word of mouth.
introduces the venue. To exhibit, the photographer is approached The crowd is eclectic, with Poland heavily
One year on I am back visiting the gallery to and direct submissions discouraged. The three represented courtesy of Maciej and Bartosz.
find out how the first year has progressed for the gallerists chat informally, usually in the £2-a-pint The mood is friendly and familiar. Also well
team and what is involved in running a successful Captain Scott pub nearby, about what work they represented is the University of Wales, Newport.
exhibition space. A theme quickly dominates, want to see and what photographers they Students from the prestigious documentary
moneymoneymoneymoneymoneymoney. would like to work with. Rob Hornstra is photography – BA (Hons) course gobble beer and
No one has any and how to get it is a constant scheduled to exhibit next and there is a peer at the pinned Laura Pannack prints.
time consumer. Joni heads down to Iceland to get workshop by Joseph Rodriguez in the diary. The university is very important to TFG due to its
some nibbles for the evening bash. The budget Marcus Bleasdale is being pursued. proximity, as well as providing a ready and
is £7-£8 but he splurges: 75-piece Tex Mex Volunteers lubricate the gallery, a central pool of willing rotation of visitors and printing some of
Platter, £4.36; chocolate strawberries, £2.14; around a dozen help with the day-to-day running. the exhibition leaflets in return for having its
filo wrapped prawns, £2; Blackforest gateau, This allows Joni, Maciej and Bartosz to name on the fliers and in the gallery space.
£3. I throw in some crisps and buy a couple of concentrate on off-site matters. The volunteers Photographers often consult the course leader
pasties to keep us going. TFG has achieved call ponytailed Joni ‘The Thinker’ for his at Newport, Ken Grant, for his opinion before
charitable status but the benefits are yet Zen-like presence and Maciej ‘The Director’, deciding to exhibit at the gallery.

“One year on I am back
visiting the gallery to
find out how the first year
has progressed for the
team and what is involved
in running a successful
exhibition space.
A theme quickly dominates,
Peter Dench
Joni, Bartosz and Maciej are all keen and recent graduate from Newport, is quickly finding

productive photographers as well as appreciators his voice. Maciej has already pinched the Top: Maciej Dakowicz (left), Joni Karanka (front) and

of photography. However, Joni is in a hiatus industry’s consciousness with his pictures and has Bartosz Nowicki of the Third Floor Gallery with
exhibitor Carolyn Drake; above left: An exhibition at the
from taking his own photographs, too busy with his 5,000 or so Flickr followers anticipating gallery. Opposite page: An image from Dakowicz’s
his paid day job and the gallery. Bartosz, a each update. Cardiff After Dark, his burgeoning Cardiff After Dark project. 67
project on the city’s nightlife, is where he thrives. At the party I see an ejected fist from the Also, good to know you’re not only alive but
Five images from the project were included in opening show event that one year ago put a hole vital.” I sniff the 50% proof Finnish vodka
the Street Photography Now book and the work in the wall so big that it could have been and down a toast to the Third Floor Gallery being
helped him to achieve an honourable mention in appropriated for use on TV by Anton Du Beke: alive and vital in another year. PP
the reportage competition category for National “Bring on the wall!”
Geographic Polska magazine. His work has
appeared in many national and international
publications, The Guardian, Independent,
American Photo and Der Spiegel among them.
I have walked with Maciej along St Mary
Street where the bulk of his project is shot.
The spectacle of the street has held his attention
since the Pole moved to Wales from Hong Kong
in 2004. I’ve seen my fair share of Britain’s bad
behaviour and St Mary Street is top ten. A nightly
production penned by the devil himself,
choreographed girls shiver, totter and titter
through the litter, warmed only by the click-flick
of cigarette lighters – the police and the bloodied
never far away. On this occasion Maciej was
fidgety in his skin. He admits to a lull in creative
libido, researching too many pictures on the
internet to be interested in taking them. I’m sure
it will pass. He usually shoots in tandem with
another snapper for safety, each watching the
other’s back, the imbibing stars of Cardiff After
Dark haven’t relished the attention (although the
council did deliver a yellow skip to the street to
help with the mess after seeing some of the
work). Certain bars are out of bounds, the security
recognises him, his name is down and he’s not
coming in. I left Maciej at 3am; he stuck around
for a while, just in case.
In the Claude Hotel over lunch the following
day I asked him how his night had gone.
Clicking through the results I spot some keepers.
What Maciej enjoys about photographing he
won’t say. What inspires him to take photographs
he doesn’t quite know. What’s the best thing
about running a gallery? It’s difficult to explain.
Is he happy with his situation? Stopping on
a frame of a couple kissing in the rain under
a black leather jacket, I would suggest that –
for 1/200th of a second each night spent on the
street in Cardiff – he is.
At a recently attended private view in the West
End of London, the glass-fronted and lighthouse
bright interior felt intimidating, the £1,000 prints
inhibiting and the bar staff prickly on repeat
returns to refill. There wasn’t a Tex Mex Platter
in sight. Bounding up to the Third Floor Gallery
you know you’ll be welcome, to have a drink
and a chat or just to look through the donated
books. There’s an adjoining artist’s studio, where As the anniversary hour approaches,
Ian Smith is currently resident, that gives the shots are distributed and speeches delivered.
place the feel of a work in progress and one you A comment in the visitors’ book catches the eye,

are encouraged to take part in. Exhibitions come “With all the technologicel (sic) advances,
and go every four to six weeks. TFG is your people don’t change that much. Loved the show.
friend, an arm around the shoulder, a social club Came with my daughter Amy who is studying EXHIBITIONS VISIT
for the creative and surprisingly forgiving. photography in college, and is a big fan. WWW.PROFESSIONALPHOTOGRAPHER.CO.UK

This page and opposite page:

Scenes from Cardiff After Dark,
the project by Maciej Dakowicz.
It’s only

but I like it
ROLL You may not have heard of Michael Ochs
but, as Paul Middleton discovered when
he spoke to him, he is the saviour of the
history of music photography.
For 35 years, Michael Ochs was the only name an art from making sure the writer stayed in touch with me, which made my job
director needed to know to get images of musicians easier, it meant I could push the past, to give music some kind of perspective.
and singers. His work in the music industry led him to
With the job at Columbia, and the fledgling archive, how deeply
start the Michael Ochs Archive, which grew to contain
involved were you in the music industry itself?
about 3 million items and was dubbed “the premier Oh, I was right in the middle of it. In those days, the record companies had
source of musician photography in the world” by the what they called house hippies and, as publicists, it meant we could deal with
New York Times. He sold the archive to Getty in 2007. both the artists themselves and the corporate side of the business. The artists
loved us, because we loved the music, and it meant we got to hang out with
How did a non-photographer come to assemble what became, the likes of the James Taylors or the Carole Kings or the Rod Stewarts.
according to the New York Times, the world’s pre-eminent rock There was a camaraderie. The ‘star system’ didn’t exist yet, which meant I
image archive? did get to know Jimi Hendrix, I did go out drinking with Jim Morrison and
I actually was a photographer, very briefly. I came to Los Angeles in 1966 Janis Joplin did come on to me [laughs].
with a useless degree from Ohio State University, but I was pretty good with
a camera. I was at a concert where the photographer didn’t show up, and So when did the archive take over, in terms of actually being a
they asked me to shoot it. I said, “How much? He said, “15 bucks” and I moneymaking career?
thought, “This is it, this is what I’m going to do”, and I did work for a full It was in 1975, and Dick Clark [the TV producer and show host] was doing
year as a professional photographer. another TV retrospective. He called, because he knew I had the images, and I
Then, at the beginning of ’67, Phil (the folk singer, and Michael’s brother) supplied what he needed for the show. A few days later, a cheque arrived for
called, wanting me to go back to New York and manage him, and that was a thousand dollars, totally unsolicited, and it occurred to me that maybe
the end of my photography career. I could make money from this. I had never previously thought about making
money from the archive, but this made me realise that maybe there
So when did the archival process begin? was a career in it and maybe I should take it just a little more seriously!
I started working at Columbia Records in 1969 and, one day, I saw them
throwing out all these boxes of old photographs of artists who had left the Was this the point when you left the music industry?
label. I thought, “This is criminal, this stuff should be documented.” Not quite. I lost my job at ABC Records at the end of ’75 then, three months
I’d always been an avid collector of records so I figured, why not collect later, my brother killed himself. I had another job lined up, but was in the
photos as well? This led to collecting sheet music, programme books, middle of organising a tribute to Phil. My new employer assured me they
everything I could find to document my fanatical love of popular music. understood and told me to take the time to organise the tribute. It seems they
changed their minds because, whilst I was organising the concert, they went
When you got the first lot of pictures from Columbia, did you have any ahead and gave the job to somebody else. Through the rest of 1976, I tried
idea where it would end up? different things, but knew that I would never work for corporate America
Not at all. I’ve always said if I’d planned to do this I would have failed. again and decided, at the beginning of ’77, to make the archive work.
It was basically a hobby which got way out of control, because I was really
just getting stuff for my own private collection. It was whilst I was working Nowadays, of course, copyright is a big issue. Did it ever occur to you in
as head of west coast publicity for Columbia, that I started saying to writers those early days when, for instance, you were selling the use of images
I was dealing with, and who were working on historical or retrospective to Dick Clark, that you might be breaking the law?
pieces, “Y’know, I have pictures of Carl Perkins (for example) when he was As it happens, I got lucky. Although, unbeknownst to me, what I was doing
at Sun Records, which you can have for free.” This was great because, apart at the time was legal, I was always terrified that I was breaking the law.

It wasn’t actually until 1978, 12 months after I started doing the archive Anyway, about a year later, Michael had just performed at the [American
full-time, that a law came into effect giving photographers more rights over football] Super Bowl and his career was really on the up. I called him and
their images. What they didn’t do though, was apply the law retrospectively. said, “Hey, why don’t we do a book? We could use all the images I’ve got,
The law stated that any photographs, taken prior to the new legislation being and get comments from you and Janet and everybody else.” He agreed and I
passed, and created for publicity or mass production or that ran without knew I was on the verge of something big. As luck would have it, the whole
a copyright line, became public domain property regardless of who owned sex thing then broke, killing the project stone dead and that was the end of
the original negative. Overnight, it turned out that all the stuff I was worried that! The collection, when I bought it in the publisher’s bankruptcy sale, had
about was perfectly legal. an exaggerated appraisal put on it of $3million. I bid just $30,000, mainly
as a token effort and not dreaming I might be successful, but it turned out
Did you ever consider commissioning photographers to shoot a I was the only serious bidder. Sometimes you get lucky.
particular artist who you were interested in holding images of?
No, but I knew that I had to make the archive completely legal if I wanted to So which collection would you consider the best you ever got?
progress. Rather than commission photographers, I started to represent them, Oh boy, well, I’d probably have to say the James Kriegsmann collection,
and started to buy collections where I could get complete rights. which I got due to a complete fluke. Kriegsmann probably photographed
more musicians than anybody else, ever. I mean, he went way back to the
Have you had photographers who objected to you holding on to images likes of Cab Calloway, did the first publicity shots of Sinatra, and was the
of theirs when you were dealing directly with them? first person ever to photograph black people properly, instead of trying to
I got calls from some photographers who threatened legal action over some anglicise them. He loved the texture of the black skin, and concentrated on
of the publicity photos I had, saying I had no right to use them. I did have the capturing the shot properly. Because of that, he became known as the man
right but, rather than fight them, I would ask if I could represent them. for black singers and musicians to go to, if they needed photographs taking.
I wanted to become a kind of one-stop shop for anybody who was looking Motown and Stax both used Kriegsmann exclusively.
for photographs of musicians. I wanted to become the biggest and best in the
world. If there were images I didn’t have, I would find a photographer who And how did you come to own the collection?
had them, and offer to represent that photographer. What I offered, that Actually, it comes out of another story. I had a single image of a singer
nobody else did, was non-exclusivity. This gave the photographer the called Ersel Hickey, who’d had a one-hit wonder a few years earlier with
freedom to put images anywhere they wished and so they had nothing to Bluebirds Over the Mountain. Hickey, I thought, looked like a generic
lose from coming with me. Elvis Presley, the same hair, same stance, everything. I knew the image
would sell, and I was right, eventually leasing it over a hundred times,
Was it ever a burden for you, knowing the responsibility you had in culminating in its use at the front of the Rolling Stone History of Rock and
keeping the archive safe and what a loss it would be if the archive were Roll book. Anyway, one day, the phone rings and it’s Ersel Hickey. My first
ever destroyed? thought was that I was about to be sued for something, but he actually
I spent a lot of money ensuring that we never had to loan out an original. thanked me for giving him a second career! We arranged to meet next time I
We housed the archive in a building that was bombproof, fireproof, was in New York, and it turned out he was due in James Kriegsmann’s studio
earthquake proof, the lot. I knew that what we had was irreplaceable and, on the day I was available.
by the end, the cost of simply looking after the archive and preserving It was ideal for me, as I really wanted to meet Kriegsmann. We went in,
it was approaching half a million dollars a year. and it was like going back in time. The studio looked like
I also knew that the archive could only ever be it had never changed since the day it first opened.
a single collection and, although I’ve had offers “I got calls from There were boxes of images everywhere, and I asked
over the years for people to buy certain sections of Kriegsmann if he realised what a fortune he was sitting
the archive, I always refused. some photographers on. His answer was, “Yeah? Prove it kid,” and I

Offers such as?

who threatened represented him from that point on. The collection had
shots of The Band, when they were still Levon and the
When one publishing company went bankrupt, legal action over Hawks, and Simon and Garfunkel when they were still
I bought their entire image collection, which ran to Tom and Jerry. I mean it was amazing, the stuff he had
about 100 filing cabinets. They were the some of the and, actually, didn’t know he had. There was even a
original publishers of Right On! magazine, and
one of these cabinets had all the images from the
publicity photos I picture of Joan Rivers as a member of a folk trio!
When Kriegsmann turned 80, he called and asked if I
magazine. What this meant, basically, was that had, saying I had no wanted to buy the collection. Of course, I didn’t hesitate
almost every image ever taken of the Jackson 5 at all in agreeing.
to that point was in this one filing cabinet. I was right to use them.
friends with Michael Jackson, and Miko Brando
(Marlon’s son), was acting as Michael’s runner at the
I did have the right How much competition, typically, would you have
when trying to buy a collection?
time. Miko knew I had the collection and, but, rather than fight It depended on the collection. One I was thrilled to get
within the hour, I had a call from Michael asking was from the photographer Earl Leaf. I called the guy
me to name my price. Now, it may be the most them, I would ask if who had the collection, and made an offer, but he said he
stupid decision that I ever made, but I told him it
wasn’t for sale for any amount. I was always more
I could represent wanted to think about it. As it was, I was the only bidder
for it. The guy selling it only contacted one other party,
of a hoarder than a seller. them.” Michael Ochs and that was the National Enquirer. I asked if they were 71
interested, and he said their reply was just, “Ah, sell it to
Ochs, we use him anyway”.
“As the world’s unusual for me to buy an entire collection just so I could
get a single negative of, say, Leadbelly or Charlie Parker.

Was there a collection you regret missing out on?

attitude towards What that meant was that I ended up with an archive
full of images which were important to me, but which
Yes, but not because I didn’t bid enough. In the mid-’80s, certain things would never generate any money. Of course, what I
I got word that there was a massive collection of images
in a room in the back of the newly re-opened Apollo
changed, we were didn’t realise at the time was that someone would be
good enough to invent CDs! In the ’80s, all the record
theatre, in Harlem. I called the guy who was running the
place and, although he wasn’t keen on me turning up on
asked to Photoshop companies started re-releasing entire back catalogues,
and suddenly they were desperate for images that had
his doorstep, we eventually made an appointment. So, I out things like been sitting in the archive, unsold, for years. From a
go along to the theatre for a 10 o’clock appointment,
bearing in mind that racial tensions were still very high
cigarettes or other small percentage of the archive being used regularly, it
suddenly went to 100% of the archive being useful.
in all the major cities, and I’m just about the only white
face for miles. The guy didn’t show at 10, and still hadn’t
increasingly Of course, the downside of that meant that other
collections suddenly became prohibitively expensive.
arrived at 11 o’clock, but I bumped into someone there undesirable
You sold the archive to Getty in 2007. You were 63
who was an original member of the Famous Flames, who
played with James Brown. I told him why I was there,
elements – with years old, at the time. But was there a reason other
and managed to persuade him to let me see the
photographs, as long as I was out before the main guy
Photoshop, even the than age, which prompted your retirement?
What really made my mind up was that I hadn’t actually
arrived, and that I didn’t take any originals, only doubles. past is changing!” been able to buy a decent collection in five years, for
I worked frantically, getting armfuls of doubles and a one reason or another. I was getting requests for images
whole load of originals. I promised to send the originals
Michael Ochs from the early ’90s, and looking through collections of
back as soon as I’d copied them and, incredibly, he Britney Spears and so on, and I just thought, “I’m not
agreed. I managed to get them into my bag just as the interested in this shit”. The fun, for me, was taking
owner arrived and threw me into the street. Once I’d copied the originals, I months to sift through thousands of negatives and that aspect had gone.
did as I had promised and sent them back. I learned later that those originals, I was really at the point where I didn’t want to, nor could I, play that game
along with the rest of that magnificent collection, simply got thrown into the properly anymore. Nostalgia, as they say, isn’t what it used to be.
trash. At least I got to preserve some of it.
Had you been a younger man, say in your 40s, would you have
As time went on, and artists became more image-rights aware, did you persevered?
see a change in attitude from them, regarding images you held? Very possibly. I probably would have still had the enthusiasm and slight
Well, yes and no. Personally, I wasn’t that affected by the new awareness naivety of youth to at least try to continue. But, y’know, even then I hadn’t
amongst artists, and it was the photographers who bore the brunt of it. thought about actually retiring until someone asked me how much I thought
There was a photographer called Michael Montfort, who used to shoot for all the archive was worth. I didn’t have a clue, as money had never been the
the big German magazines. He had terrific access to everybody and anybody driving force behind what I did. It was suggested to me that we run it up the
and then, almost overnight, he had no access at all. Eventually, he lost flagpole to see what response we got, so I saw my lawyer and we did just
interest in the business and sold his collection to me. That’s how quickly that. I’d really assumed that I’d be doing it for the rest of my life.
things changed for those guys.
A bigger change for me, actually, was the increased demand for editing How did Getty come to be the successful purchasers? Did you intend for
work on the images. As the world’s attitude towards certain things changed, a bidding war to dictate the sale price?
we were asked to Photoshop out things like cigarettes or other increasingly It was a combination of price and finding the right home. We approached a
undesirable elements – with Photoshop, even the past is changing! few people, but it was my desire that the archive should go to either Getty or
Corbis, and I hoped for a bit of a bidding war between those two. The reason
How do you feel if you see websites using images from the archive they were my preferred choices was simply because they offered the best
which you just know won’t have been licensed? chance of keeping the entire collection together, which was important to me.
Well, the world has just changed so much. A lot of the older images, which The archive was my baby, and I didn’t want to see it broken up.
pre-dated the 1978 law change, were already in the public domain, so the Another reason why Getty were a good choice was that they also hired my
thing that had benefited me in the early days now came back to hurt me. entire staff after the purchase, which was great. Here were people who knew
Add to that Getty dropping their licence rates and it all made life very that archive better than anybody else and Getty did exactly the right thing by
difficult. I got to the point where Getty were offering images for website use them. That was great for me, to see that.
for just $49. Our price point wasn’t exorbitant, but nor was it $49, and that
really hurt my business. When you sold the archive to Getty, did you keep any back for yourself?
Apart from a few art prints, all I kept were the images of Phil that were in
Do you think we’ll ever again see a library of the magnitude of the the collection. I allowed Getty to take all the digitised copies of the images,
Michael Ochs Archive being assembled by an individual? for leasing, but I kept the originals. PP
I don’t think so, I think I was just in the right place at the right time. In the
late ’60s, archival images were considered worthless, so I was able to pick To view the Michael Ochs Archive visit
up whole collections for a song, because nobody else wanted them. It wasn’t 73
Artist Damien Hirst.

What lies beneath

Compassion and a genuine interest in his subjects have helped
Pål Hansen to carve out a successful career in portraiture.
Julia Molony meets the Norwegian photographer
who sees beyond the glamour of the celebrities he shoots.
“I like to pick subjects for personal stories to offer. It’s easier to get in the door. And it’s
that don’t have a voice or that I can be the easier to be used again because you are basically
voice for,” says the Norwegian-born giving them (editors) something and then they
photographer Pål Hansen. It was in this way want to try to see if you can do a similar thing
that, as a young assistant looking to navigate again, with a commission after that.”
his way to a career as a freelance And for Pål, the commissions do indeed
photographer, Pål went after his first break. keep on coming. He managed to parlay that first,
It was 2001, towards the end of the UK’s self-initiated story into an incremental, but
foot-and-mouth crisis (a time when almost steady career trajectory, and has since made
everyone thought that the issue, as a subject for portraiture something of a specialism.
features and photo-essays, had been well and truly Photographing the rock, sports and movie stars
exhausted) when Pål rolled up at some of the who litter his portfolio might not seem
most badly affected farms with camera in hand. an obvious development for a man who admits
With a bit of lateral thinking, Pål managed to to being preoccupied by social issues in his
uncover an as-yet-unseen angle behind all the personal work. But after deeper inquiry, the
endless images of carcasses to which the public link is clear.
had become inured. His report on the human side “I would definitely say the interest in people
of the crisis, and the losses suffered by farmers, maybe almost came first for me,” he says.
earned him his first major commission, from “Often when I pick subjects they are socially
the Telegraph, and a place on the short list of the based and they are based on social issues, and it’s
Observer Hodge Award. often about people who maybe don’t have a
His journalistic nose had won him his first voice at the time. Teenage parents,” he says,
break and taught him the immediate selling power citing a picture essay from 2005 short-listed
of a newsy, noisy concept. It set him apart from for the National Portrait Gallery Portrait Prize,
his peers in photography, because he was able “they’re getting slaughtered in the newspapers,
to offer more than his skills as a photographer. but hold on, they’re teenagers; they don’t

The strength of his ideas became his currency. have a voice themselves. It’s easy to pick on
“By having a story, I think you have a lot more people who can’t stand up for themselves, 75

“I think if you impose too

much that isn’t natural
to them, then you’re not
really photographing
the subject. It becomes
more about you.”
Pål Hansen

Singer Bryan Ferry.

especially teenage parents, they’re new parents, “What I find important now is to have a very
they’re vulnerable.” good assistant who knows exactly how you
Perhaps it’s his compassion as a photographer work and you really just have to turn your head
that has made him such an expert at portraits. a little and everything is there – to keep
Certainly, there’s an ease to his manner which everything running smoothly in the backdrop.”
must smooth the way with people he photographs Pål grew up in Norway, but his mother comes
– a gentleness, or not being judgmental. He is tall, from Yorkshire, so he has always had a strong
with a strong, Nordic face and fair, waist-length affinity with the UK. It was during his short
dreadlocks. This warrior look might seem career in the army (“something I fell into”) that
imposing if it wasn’t offset by his open face and he first picked up a camera. In the last of his
the soft Scandinavian lilt to his voice. He’s utterly three years doing national service he “stumbled
unthreatening, which may go some way towards upon photography” almost by accident.
accounting for his talent for getting his subjects “I found a camera and started taking pictures
to open up, to reveal something new or previously here and there of army life and I thought,
unseen about themselves to him. ‘Ah, this is great. I’m going to have to do
“I like to involve my subjects as much as something about this.’ In Norway there was only
possible in the ideas and the thinking behind them,” one course where you could do photography –
he says of the way he works on an editorial shoot. nothing like a proper university degree.”
“I meet someone before the shoot, run through He can’t identify exactly where the impulse
the ideas and see if they’ve got any. Often the came from to take pictures, or to pursue the
best shoots are when you get a lot of input from taking of them as a career. “Maybe it was a vague
the subjects, when they think of something connection to a boyfriend of my mum’s who was
on the spot or they do things that are natural to into photography and I thought, ‘Ah, wow, that’s
themselves. I think if you impose too much actually a job. I could do something with that,’ ”
that isn’t natural to them, then you’re not he says lightly. Whatever the reason, he was soon
really photographing the subject. It becomes on a plane to the UK and to a degree at
more about you.” Nottingham Trent University. Initially, he had his
Beyond that, he says, the key is preparation sights set on fashion, with its obvious draw of
and the contribution of a practised, efficient glamour and, well, models, but by the time of his
assistant. “At the time of shooting, it’s good to graduation, he had discovered where his real
have the technical part running as machinery interests lay, putting the diversion down to being
in the background, while the communication is in his 20s. “You realise there’s more to life than
what you are focusing on: how you talk, how that. It was never really me, looking back at it. It’s
you make them relax, how you see if you can not in me to be in that world. They often talk
get emotions out of them just by being yourself about how the world is very different for fashion.
and talking to them normally. I definitely ended up in the right place.”

Singer and
David Gray.
Sculptor Antony Gormley.

Pål has recently signed up to an agency with that’s the whole idea. You never know what your
a view to taking on more commercial work. neighbour is up to; these houses with very green
When we meet, he is about to become a father for lawns, American dream homes.” The title of each
the first time and is clearly preoccupied more picture is the name of the inhabitant’s offence.
than ever with the importance of having financial “The idea is that a house offers protection from
security. But in his personal work he remains the outside and this becomes their way
preoccupied with photography’s potential to of protecting themselves from the outside.”
interrogate moral issues and to provide a bridge to It’s an incendiary topic, and although plenty of
the fringes of human experience. One such magazines have expressed interest in his story,
project he took part in recently brought him into it doesn’t come as a surprise to learn that he
the world of Tim Andrews, an ex-solicitor who, hasn’t yet been able to get it placed, mostly
when diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2005, because of legal constraints. But you get the
gave up his job and decided to turn his life into an sense that for Pål that’s not the point. It is the
art project. Pål is one of the 128 (and counting) neatness of the concept that has become
photographers invited to document Andrews’s life something of a trademark of his – an unflinching
and the progression of his disease through a series approach that seeks to lift the lid on otherwise
of photographs. The project was recently the hidden lives. Through these thoughtful studies
subject of a feature in the Guardian Magazine, that reveal something of the experience of those
and an exhibition at the Lightbox Gallery in who are outcast, ignored, unrepresented and
Woking, Surrey. even reviled, Pål seeks to expose, it seems,
For his latest self-initiated venture, Pål has something about us all collectively. About who
tackled one of the most controversial and what, as a society, we really are. PP
contemporary issues head on. Making use of
Megan’s Law, instituted in the USA to allow the
public access to the names and addresses of
convicted sex offenders, Pål went around Los
Angeles and took portrait images of the houses
where those people identified by the law lived.

“They are these very suburban American houses,” PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHERS VISIT
he says. “It could be anyone’s neighbour – and WWW.PROFESSIONALPHOTOGRAPHER.CO.UK Sir Bob Geldof.


“I found a camera and started taking

pictures here and there of army life and I
thought, ‘Ah, this is great. I’m going to
have to do something about this.’ ” Pål Hansen
is important and this is why...

Self-portrait, 1928.

He was an undoubted influence
on Arbus, Penn and Avedon, the

inspiration for many Düsseldorf
School portraitists today and a
scourge of the Nazis. Here, Robin
Gillanders takes a backward look
at the iconic German photographer
whose influence is still strong
nearly a century after he created
his most important works.

Self-Portrait, 1925.


Bricklayer, 1928.
“I hate nothing more than sugary photographs with tricks, poses and effects.” August Sander

few weeks ago I attended the specialising in portraiture. So far then, nothing The Artists, The City, and The Last People
opening of an exhibition of unusual and perhaps even today, many reading (which was to represent those on the fringes of
photographs by the German this will identify with Sander’s rather society: the blind, disadvantaged, homeless and
photographer August Sander at unremarkable early career progression. destitute). Sander photographed professionals,
the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art He was, however, an extraordinary man. middle-class families, farmers, students, war
in Edinburgh. Besides the usual artists, Although having relatively little formal education, veterans, circus artists, beggars... and Nazis.
academics, gallerists and glitterati who Sander immersed himself in literature and This astonishing project was entitled People of
attend these events, I met two friends, art, and quickly made friends and contacts within the Twentieth Century and would result in
both highly respected professional the cultural scene of Cologne, occasionally more than 600 photographs. It was never
photographers, there to pay enthusiastic exhibiting his work in international salons (small completely finished, nor were all the pictures
homage to this remarkable man whose group exhibitions) and winning numerous prizes. published in his lifetime.
most important work began a century ago; But it was while engaged in the day-to-day In each photograph Sander had his subjects
but who is August Sander, why should activities of his studio that, in around 1911, he simply look into the lens of his plate camera.
we be interested in him and what relevance began to plan a major project that was to become He allowed his subjects to ‘speak’ for themselves,
does he have to us today? his life’s work. with quiet dignity. He didn’t impose an opinion,
and in this respect, his work may be termed
‘objective’; everybody, whether aristocrat or
Soldier, c 1940. beggar, was accorded the same respect. He neither
elevated his subjects, as Yousuf Karsh did in the
1950s, nor did he denigrate them as Martin Parr
sometimes appeared to do in the 1980s and
1990s. When his photographs were first displayed
at the Cologne Art Union in 1927, he said this:
“Nothing seemed more appropriate to me than to
render through photography a picture of our times
which is absolutely true to nature... In order to see
truth we must be able to tolerate it... whether it
is in our favour or not... So allow me to be honest
and tell the truth about our age and its people.”

Sander’s work had no sponsors; he had
to endure the privations of recession during the
1920s and extreme hostility from the Nazis.
They destroyed the printing plates of his book
Face of Our Time, published in 1929, and which

comprised 60 photographs from what was
to be the final project, because they felt his
Political Prisoner, 1943. ‘objective’ approach did not represent the
German people as the master race that the Nazis
were trying to promote.
Sander’s origins were humble. He was born in Many professional photographers like to set Today, much is made of Sander’s ‘objective’
1876 and his father was a carpenter working in themselves personal projects. For some, approach. His magnum opus was a typology
the mining industry. There was no private wealth photography is in the blood – it’s a lifestyle and according to the original meaning of the word – in
in the Sander family. Leaving school at 14, not just a career – and to produce work only to the that it is a process of cataloguing ‘types’.
August worked at a local mining waste tip, where requirements of clients, editors or art directors Sometimes we are told the name of his subject
he became enthralled by a photographer working has the potential to be enervating. However, no and other times merely their societal position:
at the mine. Sander’s future direction and career photographer had conceived a project of the secretary, coal heaver etc, so they are
were established and he spent his two years of scale and scope of Sander’s. His plan was to depersonalised. However, it could not be termed
military service, from 1897 to 1899, working as document, catalogue and photograph the entire a ‘photographic typology’ in the sense that
a photographer’s assistant and doing various other German population by type and trade. This he we have come to understand the term from the
photographic jobs. He was then employed to would do by dividing his immense project into more recent Düsseldorf School. This began
run a general commercial studio in Austria and seven distinct sections: The Farmer, The Skilled with Bernd and Hilla Becher cataloguing
then, in 1909, a studio in Cologne, Germany, Tradesman, The Woman, Classes and Professions, gasometers, winding engines and so on, and

Pastrycook, 1928.
Farm Children,
c 1913.
“By means of seeing, observing and thinking... we can capture world history...
by means of the expressive potential of photography.” August Sander
was extended to portraiture by artists including a complex to a consummate composition... huge impact of digital, where it is possible to
Thomas Ruff and Rineke Dijkstra, whose By means of seeing, observing and thinking... take hundreds of images of one subject with
postmodern, deadpan, anaesthetic head studies we can capture world history... by means of the the possibility that without serious prior
have had a remarkably enduring influence on expressive potential of photography.” What would ‘contemplation’ none of them will be any
artist photographers today. Sander think now, 47 years after his death, of the good? Surely it is better to take one image
In many cases, Sander’s subjects are placed
serially against similar plain backgrounds
and these images seem coldly dispassionate;
however, a considerable proportion of
his work demonstrates a subtlety and
sophistication of picture-making, and a finely
tuned humanist sensitivity.
In public conversation with Keith Hartley,
chief curator at the Scottish National Gallery of
Modern Art, Sander’s grandson Gerd commented:
“It’s not about photography, it’s about the idea...
and Sander’s work is not about making beautiful
photographs, it’s about documenting an idea.
And stylistically if anyone influenced him it was
Rembrandt for the lighting.” In other words, and
as Keith Hartley pointed out, the implication is
that Sander’s was one of the first conceptual
photographic works. And yet the visual evidence
of the work itself does not suggest this.
Aren’t all projects initially the result of an idea –
a concept? Having said that, Sander rejected
pictorialist ‘fuzzygraphs’ and championed
‘straight’ photography, much as Paul Strand did

in the USA in the 1920s. As Sander said

himself: “I hate nothing more than sugary
photographs with tricks, poses and effects.”
Sander worked with 5x4 and 5x7 cameras and
most of his images were made on location

rather than in the studio. Generally he made only

one or two exposures of each subject –
perhaps understandable given the weight of the
glass plates that he used. So why is it that
despite huge advances in technology over the past
century, the standard of picture making has
not necessarily improved? It is so much easier to
produce technically proficient images –
anybody can do it now to a certain standard – and
yet we still look in awe at the intensity,
intelligence, vision and beauty of some of these
early photographers. It’s logistically much
easier to take pictures, but... Here’s Sander again
in a radio lecture in 1931: “One can snap a
shot or take a photograph; to ‘snap a shot’ means
reckoning with chance, and to ‘take a photograph’
Raoul Hausmann
means working with contemplation – that is to as Dancer, 1929.
comprehend something, or to bring an idea from 85
Girl in a Fairground
Caravan, 1926-1932.

“It’s not about photography, it’s about the idea... and Sander’s work is not about making
beautiful photographs, it’s about documenting an idea.” Gerd Sander
as a result of “seeing, observing and thinking”
than a hundred without.
Sander had an immense influence on most of
the major portrait photographers of the last
century, especially photographers such as Irving
Penn, Richard Avedon and Diane Arbus. Each of
them worked commercially while following
Sander’s example and engaged in ‘personal
projects’ – for example, Penn’s Small Trades,
Avedon’s In the American West and Arbus’s
portraits of people on the margins of society.
None of these projects, however, had the scale
and ambition of Sander’s.
Avedon for example, must have been aware
of – and been influenced by – Sander’s portrait
of Bricklayer, especially since it was one of
several of his pictures selected by Edward
Steichen for the New York City Museum of
Modern Art’s seminal, blockbuster show
The Family of Man in 1955. A portrait of dignity
and strength, not least because one can only
imagine the weight of those bricks as the
bricklayer waited, apparently effortlessly with
hand casually on hip (so essential for the
composition), while Sander composed, focused
and exposed.

And what about the portrait of Girl in a

Fairground Caravan? If it wasn’t for the
precision of the crop and composition, it could be
an Arbus. Most of Sander’s subjects appear to
have an air of melancholy – and tension –

as if they are presaging or reflecting on the

tragedy of the German people in that period.
The conscious positioning of the girl’s hand on
the key in the lock looks at first glance as if she
is bleeding on to the door...
If Avedon and Arbus, among many, were
influenced by Sander, in turn each of these
influenced countless later generations of
photographers. Some, like my two friends at the
Sander exhibition opening, drew their inspiration
directly from the instigator of it all. PP Painter’s Wife
[Helene Abelen], c1926.

August Sander: People of the To read our feature on the Düsseldorf School from the October issue go to the magazine
Twentieth Century is at the Scottish National section on
Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh,
Liz and Max, the duo behind photography company Haarala Hamilton, have
two very different lives as photographers. One exists on the commercial What happens when a leisurely
side, involving client commissions from engineers to government quangos.
Then there are the personal projects they undertake, all a far cry, both
cycle ride through London turns into a
creatively and aesthetically, from the bread-and-butter work they refer
to, that “pays for life”. A couple both personally and professionally, Liz and
personal project that becomes an
Max do what few achieve: to work and live together as a happily married
couple. Max laughs: “Of course there are disagreements along the way, as
international commercial campaign?
with all things, but if you have someone else there you have another set of Cass Chapman talks to photographer
eyes. One person sees something and the other sees something else, so it
works really well for us to work together.” Liz adds that working by yourself team Max and Liz Haarala Hamilton to find out.
can be a lonely existence but in their experience it is a lot of fun.
Their professional collaboration began before they became a couple and
eventually married. Having met on their first day at Camberwell College of
Arts in London, they started working together five years ago. Before that,

This image: Arthur Potts Dawson,
co-founder of The People’s
Supermarket. Opposite page: Some of
the facilities and produce on offer at
the store and (below, far right) Kate,
one of the members.

they worked independently but travelled together, their unity as

photographers metamorphosing along the way. “We weren’t a couple at
college or afterwards for quite a while,” Max tells me. “We graduated in 2000
so we’re going back a way, but we always worked together when we were
printing and we also did a few projects together so knew we could work as
a team. It just happened organically because we were both interested in the
same things. We always went to the same places and got excited about the
same things we saw.”
Since then they have successfully established their own company, Haarala
Hamilton Photography, which has a varied client list, but their really
attention-grabbing work stems from personal projects, one of which has
been garnering a lot of attention lately. The People’s Supermarket, an
eco-ethical co-op in Lamb’s Conduit Street in central London, is the latest
focus of Liz and Max. Promoting itself as a grocery store “for the people, by
the people”, it sparked their interest just before opening last year, began as
a personal project and quickly developed into something far more
commercial. Started by Arthur Potts Dawson, one of the players behind the

capital’s eco-friendly restaurant Acorn House, The People’s Supermarket is

a not-for-profit organisation; members pay an annual £25 membership fee
and sign up to work a four-hour shift in the supermarket every four weeks,
becoming part-owners in the process.This gives them a say in key decisions
involving the business and also a 10% discount on their shopping. The idea
is that shoppers have a choice beyond the large supermarket conglomerates,
that the produce is all sourced from sustainable outlets and that volunteers


never heard
of anything
like it in the
UK, so it
seemed like
a unique
thing at
the time.”
Max Hamilton

have a say in how and where their itself as the exhibition space.” The buzz around The People’s Supermarket
“It was both the food is sourced, while giving will only increase with the television exposure and a book isn’t out of the

ethical cause something back to the local

community by working on the
question if the business increases in popularity and scope.“It would be lovely
to do something with them when the time comes to do an exhibit,” offers Liz.

and the premises for a few hours a month.

This system of ethical shopping and
Aside from this unique, worthwhile, and now successful commercial
project, Liz and Max have other plans under way. They are starting a
commercial supplying was such an inspiration
that Channel 4 quickly came on board
photographic series on female footballers, Max mentions a project about
Skype and they have been working in Finland on a project “about a traditional
possibility that and started filming events within the
premises for a television series that
Finnish knife-maker which is going to be published into a book. The series
looks at dying traditions. The puukko is a traditional Finnish knife originally
drew us in...” first aired in February. Liz and Max crafted for hunters and everyday use. Once widely seen, these knives are
were impressed from the outset and now used mainly for show and the practice of making them is dying out.
Max Hamilton contacted Potts Dawson about This is a project on Matti Hesitance (Masa), a traditional Finnish knife-maker,
shooting portraits of the volunteers at a ‘puukko mestari’ [champion].” Interwoven with visits to Finland are the
work. Cycling around London, as they commercial projects that enable such private ventures to occur in the first
often do together, the couple noticed the new development and peeked inside place. I imagine it must be hard to change hats in this way, but, chatting with
as the interior was being completed. “We saw Arthur [Potts Dawson],” Liz and Max, it clearly comes easily. “We do a lot of corporate work for
explains Liz, “and he explained the concept of the shop to us. We thought it engineers, architects and others – obviously you need corporate work to pay
was a really interesting idea and that maybe we could start working on a for life, but then we do other projects as well, so we’ll work on a personal
little project or something. We had a few magazines and editors in mind, project always with the aim of having it published and used for something
thinking it might be something that would fit in with what they publish, so we else. It’s those personal projects that, we find, take us on to something else,”
thought, ‘Why don’t we start a project?’ The following week we went back says Max. “We don’t show our commercial work as much because it’s not as
and just did loads of photos. It built up from there, though we originally interesting to us as the personal work which definitely tends to generate
imagined it would be only a few days of shooting.” That said, since starting further stuff.”
in June last year, they have been photographing regularly on the premises. Neither had any formal training in photography. After graduating from
“Now the organisers at the supermarket know us and, indirectly, we Camberwell, Max worked in a studio, “doing retouching and a bit of
seem to have become their official photographers.” assisting,” but admits to being “pretty much all self-taught. We both
The philosophy behind The People’s Supermarket impressed Liz and Max graduated and just started working straight away.” Liz did an MA at
who instantly recognised a fantastic concept. “I think someone mentioned Goldsmiths, University of London, a few years ago, studying photography and
one in New York,” explains Max, “but we’d never heard of anything like it in agriculture, “but that wasn’t technical photography as such,” she explains.
the UK, so it seemed like a unique thing at the time.” Not to mention “It was more a sort of ‘theory behind the photography’ course.
worthwhile. Of course, they instantly recognised the commercial viability in I shot a lot and learnt from other people and learnt by accident.” What they
shooting the project, believing it was something that could grow, but the share, aside from an obvious love of photography and a talent in that
cause itself was what drew them in and, from there, everything flourished. medium, is a confidence with their equipment and courage when it comes
As a result, The Observer Food Monthly ran some of their shots alongside an to exploring new personal projects. Liz says they shoot with digital for
article about the supermarket, as did The Guardian, and no doubt the commercial projects because they have to, but a lot of their personal work
Channel 4 television series will encourage others to follow suit. “The way we is, interestingly, still shot using film. As Matt explains: “We either use
work, we have to be interested in what we’re photographing, so if there is no medium format or large format. We just prefer it as a medium. It’s a different
personal interest, then why do it? It was both the ethical cause and the way of working because when we use a large format camera it’s obviously a
commercial possibility that drew us in – it is really interesting to us and it’s much slower process and you have to think about composition and
such a great concept.” As Liz notes, the personal relationships that have everything and for two people to work with large format cameras is actually
blossomed as a result have added a new layer to their involvement: “We meet easier than one of us having a digital camera.” Their equipment of choice is
so many people there to shoot portraits. They’ve all got stories to tell and it’s “an old Linhof Color Monorail 5x4 and then for The People’s Supermarket
been really enjoyable. There is such a mixture of people: actors, barristers, project we used a Mamiya RB67.” Liz likes the Mamiya 7II when they travel
people from the local estates.” Max adds: “We also got interested in the but the couple always take the Linhof as well when they are away. Max and
people who supplied the supermarket, so once we’d done the original shoot Liz agree virtually all the time about equipment and subject matter. Such a
we started talking with the people who worked there about their suppliers unified approach to work makes this happy collaboration possible and results

and they opened up a whole new area of interest for us. We saw it as an in innovative creative photography. The People’s Supermarket project may
opportunity to go to some of the farms to shoot and do something different.” have attracted great interest in this couple, but it is clear that there is far
The resulting images are wonderful, stark, honest portraits of a variety of more to come. PP
characters and faces; simple and honest but vivid as a collection. Liz admits
they would “ideally like to get them in some sort of book for The People’s
Supermarket, though it would be nice to hang the portraits as an exhibition
as well; there was talk of some sort of exhibit at the shop, using the shop

Tom – a member of
The People’s Supermarket.
Don’t expose yourself.
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photographed challenging to many and deeply personal to her, and the
manner of her death was almost an inevitable conclusion to a life devoted
to creating images of such personal introspection. A sad end was almost
preordained. It is easy to romanticise such a life but the stark reality is that
Arbus was a tortured soul who chose photography as a form of emotional
communication. She didn’t choose to take photographs – she needed to take
photographs. But she also suffered from depression, as had her mother, and
hepatitis, which worsened the symptoms of her depression.
The same could be said of the tragically short life and career of Francesca
Over the past year we have tried to Woodman, a photographer whose work received critical acclaim after her
death. She ended her life aged just 22 (Arbus was 48), distraught that her
raise awareness of the pressures and delicate, highly personal and ethereal images were not being given the
commercial recognition she wanted and expected. But personal turmoil also
stresses that professional haunted her work and life, and she had been receiving therapy for
depression. In retrospect her images are often explained and discussed in
photographers face, through a series these terms and as visual representations of her delicate mental state.
When an important relationship ended and combined with the way in which
of articles in the magazine and online. she felt ignored by the photographic world, she stepped out of the window
of her New York loft apartment. With her sad demise came the photographic
However, with the recent sad death recognition she had so needed.
Both Arbus and Woodman were photographers on a personal photographic
of photojournalist Penny Tweedie and journey largely unconcerned with bending to commercial requirements when
creating their images. Donovan, Carlos Clarke and Tweedie were all
the arrival of a reader’s email, travelling very different roads.
Terry Donovan’s story is well known. Many of his images have gone on to
PP Editor Grant Scott decided to become iconic statements of their time. Huge financial success through the
1960s and 1970s saw him living an enviable lifestyle, getting involved with
re-visit the issues previously raised film making and counting both Margaret Thatcher and Princess Diana as
friends. He was a photographer who had achieved celebrity status.
and attempt to put them into But creatively he had become confused and found himself out of step with
the times by the beginning of the 1990s with his celebrated work of
a photographic, historical context. the previous three decades largely forgotten (I wrote about my personal
experience of this in Being There in the February issue of PP).
That confusion led to him not being able to understand why he was no
Diane Arbus, Terence Donovan, Francesca Woodman, Bob Carlos longer getting as many commissions as he had done in the past and why he
Clarke and now Penny Tweedie. What do they all have in common? was no longer able to achieve the level of fees which had previously
Well, apart from all being photographers who made their personal marks funded the lifestyle he so enjoyed. Like a pop star who gets to Number One
through the images they created, they all decided to end their own lives. but soon finds himself replaced by the next best thing, it is hard to go
These are photographers whose names most of us know, who varied in age, from Number One to Two, Three, Four or worse. Despite a late revival of
work and approach. They also span decades in the history of photography. fortune, thanks to an excellent agent who managed to make Donovan’s
For many years Diane Arbus was seen as the archetype of a tortured work seem more relevant to a younger market, the photographer ended
artist/photographer. Her life was complex, the subject matter that she his life aged 60. 93
{ YOUR COMMUNITY } The following blog entry was sent to us by a reader as a direct
response to an article I wrote in the August 2010 issue of PP on the
loneliness of being a professional photographer. It is an honest
and touching account, which I hope you will find moving, honest and,
most importantly, appropriate for a magazine with the title
Professional Photographer to feature. We publish it in the spirit of
sharing experiences and to show that we are willing to speak
about the realities of the profession that we are passionate about.
It’s good to talk.

A similar tale could be told about the life and career of Bob Carlos Loneliness (Depression) and Photography
Clarke. Like Donovan he had achieved celebrity status through his by Andy Craddock
photography. His work changed hands for high prices and was widely I read an article written by Grant Scott in the August 2010 edition of
exhibited. He also lived a celebrity lifestyle hanging out on the Fulham Professional Photographer magazine. It was about the loneliness of
Road with many of the celebrities he photographed and counted as being a freelance professional photographer.
friends. But there was a dark side to Carlos Clarke’s life and As photographers, we do sit in front of our computers staring at the
photography. His approach to photography was singular and driven with screen wondering who to contact next looking for work and how.
a sexual edge similar to that of Robert Mapplethorpe’s, except Carlos We do wonder why nobody replies to our emails, returns our telephone
Clarke was obsessed with the female form and not the male. He also calls or rings us with the perfect job. We do look at other photographers’
suffered from clinical depression for many years. sites, compare our work to theirs and wonder “why are they busy
Like Donovan his work suffered from the vagaries of fashion and by and I am not, what do they have that I have not?”
2006 his powerful women and sexual aesthetic defined the 1980s, not Without the social elements of an office or studio full of people it is hard
the ‘new woman’ advertising that editorial clients were looking for. to get up every day and motivate yourself to create new reasons for
Despite the strong market for his work within galleries, Carlos Clarke people to come and see you, it is hard to find new clients and it is hard to
found himself checked into that last refuge for many celebrities, remain creative and continue the daily slog of self-promotion.
The Priory, but sadly didn’t stay for long. After checking himself out It requires a huge amount of determination, self-belief and stamina to
he threw himself under a train – a terrible end for someone whose keep going. A photographer works in a profession that requires huge
photographic life had been so obsessed with perfection. He was 55. self-belief in one’s work and oneself. We have nothing to sell other than
I first met Penny Tweedie in the late 1980s. She was complaining even our personality and creativity. When either or both are rejected
then about the difficulty of making a living as a photographer but she our self-belief takes a battering and the more it happens the more our
was a fighter and was not going to accept the reduction in fees as she self-belief declines dramatically. Few of us have anybody close to us that
saw it. Of course, looking back, those fees look like the golden days but understands the pressures of being a professional photographer.
the benefit of hindsight is a rare gift. Tweedie had paid her dues as a We try, we desperately want, to give out a successful, positive persona
photojournalist through the 1960s and 1970s shooting in Bangladesh, to persuade our prospective clients they are buying into a success story.
East Timor, Vietnam and Uganda. She covered the plight of the Thus we lie.
Aboriginal people in Australia, the war in Lebanon and the devastation When we are asked how we are doing, how the recession is affecting us
caused by the tsunami in the East Indian Ocean. Tweedie was a serious and how we are enjoying things at the moment, we lie. We try to juggle
photographer who took seriously her responsibilities to record man’s the truth; we create two versions of ourselves, the real one and the public
inhumanity to man. She was also a single mother and often took her son face that meets with the client and exudes success wherever and
with her on assignments. Finally, everything became too much for her. whenever one advertises.
After what she had seen and the lack of commercial recognition for her It is a hard act to maintain when you read the photographic press and
work, she chose to end her life aged 70. see the success others are having. It is a hard act to maintain when
Five very different stories about five very different photographers you see the success your peers are purportedly having. It is a hard act to
who all chose to end their own lives. The same end but for many maintain when in moments of ego and extreme self-belief you
different reasons and that is my reason for looking behind the headlines. compare yourself to the truly successful in the world of photography and
The response we have had to the articles we have run over the last year know, “I could have done that.”
on the pressures professional photographers face has been both There is a subtle difference to the paragraph above and the old joke
encouraging and enlightening. The main theme to all of the responses about photographers: How many photographers does it take
we have received has been one of thanks. Thanks for speaking out to change a light bulb? Fifty, one to change the bulb and 49 to say,
about the subject and thanks for giving photographers the opportunity to “I could have done that!”
speak about their experiences. That’s why I wanted to talk about these Sometimes, if budget and equipment were not an issue some of us
five photographers; to show that we all have shared experiences really could “have done that.”
(however successful we are) and to help photographers not to feel so Sometimes, the editors and creative directors that we as photographers
alone or frightened to speak out. are applying to for work forget that the Crewdsons, the LaChapelles
I hope that any photographer reading this article will understand and the Leibovitzes of the industry are teams of other creatives, including
why we have published it and applaud Andy Craddock for getting in assistants, lighting assistants, make-up artists, stylists, post-production
touch with us to share his story and feelings in the blog entry that teams and marketing assistants. They are not freelancers working alone.
follows. Sometimes it is hard to step out from the crowd and make In fact, Annie Leibovitz tells a story in her book, At Work, where Dorothy
a stand. It may be hard but we think it’s the right thing to do. Wilding was employed to photograph the Queen and wasn’t even in the

room when the photograph was taken! Apparently Wilding’s assistants, dreams to come true. So far I have failed and am crushed by depression
who were trained in her style, often went out and took photographs wondering, like Sally Brampton did, if I am not a professional
for her. Often, she wasn’t in the same country. At one time she employed photographer then who am I?
around 37 people in her studio. I know I am not a corporate slave. I am not a member of the service
In his Professional Photographer article, coincidentally, Grant Scott industry, neither am I a cook or a mechanic or a lorry driver. I am not a
mentioned a book called Shoot the Damn Dog. It was written by wedding photographer and neither am I a photographer that sells
Sally Brampton, the woman who launched the magazine ELLE and then shoddy ‘portfolio’ photo-shoots to ill-informed want-to-be models for
suffered a clinical depression. She recovered (or so she’d thought) 30 quid a time.
and became the editor of Red magazine, a position she was fired from due I want to be a PROFESSIONAL, PUBLISHED, WORKING, ARTISTIC,
to ongoing depression. I’ve just finished reading the same book. photographer/artist. But. I sit here at the computer, lonely and depressed
On page 62 Sally describes how she felt after being fired: She felt that wondering who to contact next and how. I have the weight of fear, anxiety,
her self, her sense of worth and her calling was that of a successful procrastination and depression crushing me every day and I have no one
magazine editor. By being fired, by losing her job as an editor of a to turn to for help.
mainstream magazine she felt that she’d failed at being herself. If she My counsellor is only words in my ear once a week. My closest friends
was no longer fit to be an editor then what was her worth? By failing don’t have the experience to help me and as yet, even though I’d be loath
in the role of an editor she herself had failed. What did she have to share my plans with peers, I don’t even have the peers with enough
left if her self had been taken away and she had no way forward or experience to help me. I am the one they often turn to for advice!
way to regain that self? So. I sit here at the computer, lonely and depressed with a plan to turn
That struck a chord with me too… If I fail at being a photographer then everything around. A plan that I know will work, wondering who to
what do I have left? I define myself as a photographer. I live to be a contact next and how. Knowing that when I do know the right person to
photographer. If I cannot be a photographer then what do I, myself, have contact, I’ll have to put on my public face full of lies and stories of

“Motivation and creativity are all but impossible when you’re this lonely and depressed.” Andy Craddock
left? I cannot answer the question. I have no answers. I do not see myself success when, underneath, my current defeated self is cowering with
as anything but a professional and successful photographer. fear, procrastination and depression.
For one moment in time, I’m going to refuse to lie. The public face is I have spent hours on my plan. It is a story, in itself, of self-discovery.
going to be the real face. The real face is going public. Maintaining a show It is biographical. It is life changing. It is my dream, it is my dreams come
of success where there is none is laborious and wearisome. Trying to true. It is altruistic in parts, it is self-serving in parts. It is a wonderment
maintain momentum and enthusiasm in the midst of a clinical depression and an abhorrence. It is a thank you and a fuck you. It is charity and it is
is nigh on impossible. Motivation and creativity are all but impossible greed.
when you’re this lonely and depressed. I sit here at the computer, lonely and depressed, with a plan to turn
Within the past month I could have and was more than prepared to die, everything around…
which I would have were it not for a sentence spoken to me. I can truly I need encouragement when my motivation fails. I need someone to
understand why photographers and other creatives commit suicide. have belief in me when I fail to have belief in myself. I need someone to
I did not know them or could ever purport to know what they were help financially support my plan for the next three months.
thinking at the time but I can sympathise with Diane Arbus, Bob Carlos Who the hell do I turn to? PP
Clarke, Warren Bolster, Terence Donovan, Pierre Molinier, Francesca
Woodman and the many other not-so-famous unnamed photographers
who have committed suicide. We established The United States of Photography as a direct result
I will leave the last words on suicide to Kevin Carter, a Pulitzer Prize of the response we received to Grant’s original article in
winner. Part of his suicide note read: “I am depressed… without phone… Professional Photographer (now available on our website). You
money for rent… money for child support… money for debts… money!!! can find out more about this free-to-join photographic help group
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Working the System

I picked up my first Hasselblad in 1998 and

Hasselblad’s latest system immediately fell in love. Everything about it
get to the price. The CFV-50 may bring all of your
Hasselblad kit back into operation but it’s going
was right for me. The build quality was
updates are specifically impeccable, the sense of tradition was
to cost you £13,194 to do so. And therein lies the
rub. There is no doubt that it’s a great piece
designed to tempt unbeatable, the lenses were beautiful, and
easily available. I was hooked. I bought four
of kit but that kind of investment requires some
serious thought.
pros back to the Swedish bodies, a bag of lenses, countless film backs and
I started shooting. The square format worked for
The quality of the images the CFV-50 delivered
was exceptional but at that price I am afraid that I
brand but, as PP Editor me, as did holding the camera at waist level. expected it to. What I think is more relevant is to
I created my way of seeing with those cameras, consider what you are going to do with these
and longtime Hasselblad won some awards, and built a portfolio of images images. How are they going to be reproduced and

user Grant Scott and clients. I even had my work published

in a square book so the images didn’t need to be
how? This is when we get down to the nitty-gritty
of the CFV-50. If you’re shooting billboards, for

discovers, going back to cropped. Then everything changed.

With the advent of digital capture my head
large format printing, ad campaigns, complicated
set builds or if you need a large file for extensive
Hasselblad is all about was turned by a new mistress and my Hasselblad
marriage was over. I had to start from the
post-production, then the CFV-50 makes
complete sense. If the Hasselblad format fits your
asking yourself questions. beginning again, re-learn to see with a DSLR and,
truth be told, even though I love the cameras
way of seeing and defines the way in which you
create images, and you have been waiting for the
I now work with, I’ve always had a very soft spot moment to return to it or move finally into digital
for my first love. capture, then it also makes sense.
Now as I sit at my desk and look at the pile of I would love to make this my everyday camera
Hasselblad kit that has just been delivered for me solution for all of my commercial shoots and
to review I can’t help but feel the same as when as I have the bodies and lenses already it would
you see an ex after years apart. There is a sense of make sense for me to do so. I could trawl the
what could have been. If Hasselblad had given internet and eBay for rare and interesting lenses
me a realistic digital option in those early digital to add to my system and go back to being a
days would I have remained faithful? Hasselblad photographer. But before doing so I
This feeling of regret leads me straight to the would have to seriously consider where that
CFV-50, the 50-megapixel digital back that is leaves the digital investment in my DSLR system
sitting tidily behind the oh-so-familiar traditional over the past five years. Of course, every pro
Hasselblad body of the 503CW. The back has the needs a backup so I’m going to have to buy
same quality of build and familiar feel of a two and that’s now become a £26,388 investment.
traditional film back; it clicks on to the body in And that’s the problem.
the same way as a film back and suddenly I’m a If I were starting from scratch my decision
Hasselblad photographer again. It just feels right would be based on image usage and available
in the palm of my hand and allows me to start budget as much as anything else, plus, of course,
taking pictures in the way I so loved back in the choosing to make a commitment to the
analogue days. It’s exactly the solution I wanted Hasselblad brand. In short the CFV-50 is a great
six years ago and the right solution for me now. piece of kit which answers many problems for
The CFV-50 is designed to match the current and lapsed Hasselblad photographers and
appearance and functionality of the Hasselblad V possibly new members of the Swedish
System and does it perfectly. With the CFV-50
strapped on I was back and shooting square
format 38-megapixel images – or 50-megapixel in
full rectangular format. That’s all I wanted to do “The CFV-50 is designed to
or know but if you want the headline specs and
facts, here they are: it delivers 16-bit colour, ISO
match the appearance and
from 50 to 800, a longest shutter speed of 64
seconds, writes on to a CF card and stores 60
functionality of the
images on average on to a 4GB card. Which is all Hasselblad V System and
fine with me. Hasselblad seemed to have got
everything right with the CFV-50, but then we does it perfectly.” Grant Scott 99
Hasselblad H4D-60 TECH SPEC Hasselblad CFV-50 TECH SPEC
■ Sensor size: Dalsa 60.1 megapixels ■ Sensor size: 50 megapixels
(8,956 x 6,708 pixels) (6,132 x 8,176 pixels)
■ Sensor dimensions: 40.2mm x 53.7mm ■ Sensor dimensions: 36.7mm x 49.0mm
■ Image size: RAW 3FR capture, 80MB on (lens factor 1.1) and 36.7mm x 36.7mm
average. TIFF 8-bit: 180MB (lens factor 1.5)
■ File format: Lossless compressed ■ Single shot
Hasselblad RAW 3FR ■ 16-bit colour
■ Lenses: Hasselblad HC/HCD lens line ■ ISO 50, 100, 200, 400 and 800
with integral central lens shutter ■ Longest shutter speed: 64sec
■ Shutter speed range: 32sec to ■ Image storage: CF card type II (write
1/800sec speed >20MB/sec) or tethered to Mac
■ ISO speed range: ISO 50,100, 200, 400 or PC
and 800 ■ Colour management: Hasselblad Natural
■ Colour definition: 16-bit Colour Solution – one generic profile
■ Colour management: Hasselblad Natural ■ Storage capacity: 4GB CF card holds
Colour Solution 60 images on average
■ Focusing: Autofocus metering with ■ Battery type: Sony InfoLITHIUM community, but it is an investment which
passive central cross-type sensor; L NP-F series comes with a lot of questions before a decision
Ultra focus digital feedback; ■ Colour display: 2.5in TFT type, can be made – all of which are about you and
Instant manual focus override; 24-bit colour your photography and not the CFV-50.
Metering range EV 1 to 19 at ISO 100 ■ Histogram feedback So the CFV-50 claimed my heart but sitting
■ Viewfinder options: HVD 90x: 90° ■ IR filter: Multi-coated, mounted on next to it like a grey super-sleek intruder in the
eye-level viewfinder with diopter CCD sensor classic Hasselblad world is the H4D-60. This is
adjustment (-5 to +3.5D), ■ Feedback: IAA – Instant Approval the flagship model in the Hasselblad range and
image magnification 3.1 times Architecture; provides acoustic and with a 60-megapixel 40mm x 54mm sensor it’s
■ HV 90x: 90° eye-level viewfinder with visual feedback the mother of pro cameras. The H4D-60 is less
diopter adjustment (-4 to +2.5D), ■ File format: Lossless compressed about heart and more about mind. All of the
image magnification 2.7 times Hasselblad 3F RAW H system cameras are built using solid
■ HVM: Waist-level viewfinder, image ■ Software: Phocus for Mac and PC stainless steel housings and a high-strength
magnification 3.2 times ■ 3FR files are also supported directly in aluminium for the inner core, so despite their
■ IR filter: Mounted on CCD sensor Apple and Adobe environments ergonomic, smooth styling they are tough
■ Exposure metering, metering options: ■ Camera support: Hasselblad V System pieces of kit. But these are Hasselblads for
Spot, Centre Weighted and CentreSpot. cameras manufactured since 1957 (not photographers who don’t want waist-level
Metering range – Spot: EV2 to 21; Centre recommended for critical work together viewing and a connection with the past; these
Weighted: EV1 to 21; CentreSpot: with SWC models and ArcBody due to are very much for photographers wanting to
EV1 to 21 optical incompatibility. Some earlier SWC step up to medium format quality from
■ Power supply: Rechargeable Li-ion models need slight modification for DSLRs. Based on the H3D platform the H4D
battery (7.2 VDC/1850 mAh) battery mounting reasons). 2000 series system features Hasselblad’s True Focus
■ Storage options: CF card type U-DMA or cameras and 201F with C lenses only. Technology. Most DSLRs are equipped with a
tethered to Mac or PC 202FA, 203FE and 205FCC models need
■ Storage capacity: 8GB CF card holds a minor camera modification to use
100 images on average F/FE lenses. All other cameras with
■ Capture rate: 1.4 seconds per capture, Hasselblad V interface “But these are Hasselblads
31 captures per minute ■ Digital lens correction supports the
■ Colour display: Yes, 3in TFT type, following lenses: CF/CFE 40 FLE, for photographers who
24-bit colour, 460,320 pixels
■ Histogram feedback: Yes
CFE 40 IF, CFi 50 FLE, CFi/CFE 80,
CFi/CFE 120, CFi 150, CFE/CFE 180,
don’t want waist-level
■ Software: Phocus for Mac and Windows CFi 250, CFE 250 Sa and CFE 350 Sa viewing and a connection
■ Host connection type: FireWire 800 ■ Host connection type: FireWire 800
(IEEE-1394b) (IEEE-1394b) with the past; these are
■ Operating temperature: 0-45˚C /
■ Battery capacity: Sony InfoLITHIUM L,
up to eight hours of shooting capacity
very much for
■ Dimensions complete camera:
with HC80mm lens: 153mm x 131mm
■ Operating temperature: 0-45°C / photographers wanting to
x 213mm (W x H x D) ■ Dimensions: 91mm x 90mm x 61mm step up to medium format
■ Weight: 2,290g (complete camera with
HC80mm lens, Li-ion battery and
[W x H x D]
■ Weight: 530g (excluding battery and
quality from DSLRs.”
CF card) CF card) Grant Scott

“It was just a shame that the

battery charger and battery were
third-party pieces of kit without
Hasselblad’s customary attention
to detail and build.” Grant Scott

multi-point AF sensor which allows the advanced positional algorithms and carries out manipulate to my own way of working on that
photographer to fix an off-centre focus point on the required focus corrections swiftly so that no basis. Again I was impressed by how easily
an off-centre subject, which is then focused shutter lag occurs. The H4D’s firmware then I found myself feeling completely at home with it.
correctly. Due to the physics of an SLR camera, further corrects the focus using the precise data The only negative I found was with the overall
the off-centre focus points that are offered are all retrieval system found on all of the appropriate aesthetic of the back screen area, which had the
clustered relatively close to the centre of the lenses. That’s all a long way from my first feel and look of an in-flight back-of-the-seat film
image. To set focus outside of this centre area, the experience of the H system with the H1 way back console. I know this has nothing to do with how
photographer is still forced to focus first, and in 2001, of which the less said the better. the camera performs but it didn’t have that
then shift the camera to reframe, with the The H4D range seems then to be a Hasselblad touch of class I expect from this
resulting loss of focus as a result. To overcome well-conceived and well-resolved option for manufacturer. Of course, the true test as to
this, Hasselblad has used modern yaw rate sensor those wanting to step up to medium format. whether this is the camera for you is exactly the
technology to measure angular velocity in an The H4D-60 I was sent came in a kind of kit form same as I outlined with the CFV-50: how are you
innovative way. The result is the new Absolute with a removable back, handle, battery and, of going to use the images you create? For me the
Position Lock (APL) processor, which is the basis course, lens, all of which are easy to work out same rules apply to the H4D range, and
of Hasselblad’s True Focus. The APL processor and put together (even without a manual!). particularly to the 60, as I outlined earlier.
logs camera movement during any recomposing, Once together it’s a sturdy piece of kit which has For many both of these Hasselblad options are
then uses these exact measurements to calculate a real weight about it. It was just a shame that the going to overdeliver but if you need the quality,
the necessary focus adjustment, and issues the battery charger and battery were third-party they provide the solution, especially the H4D,
proper commands to the lens’s focus motor so it pieces of kit without Hasselblad’s customary which gives you the option of an entry-level price
can compensate. The APL processor computes the attention to detail and build. The menu system of £10,794 with the H4D-31 (which, not
and controls are easy to use and obvious in their surprisingly, features a 31-megapixel sensor).
functionality; surprisingly so actually as it would It’s still a lot of money but it may well be the
be easy to think that a camera at this price right tool for the job and in conclusion that is
(£31,800) would be intimidating, but it is one of where I think I find myself at the end of four
the easiest cameras to work out that I have used days spent with well over £50,000 worth of
for some time. So easy in fact that I challenged Hasselblad photographic kit.
some of the PP team who had never been I love the CFV-50 and if funds allowed I would
anywhere near a medium format camera to go out and buy myself one, two or three and start
shoot with it, which they did with ease. using my Hasselblad kit again. If I were being
Image quality in general use was commissioned to shoot the kind of work that
everything I would requires Hasselblad’s quality I would invest in the
expect of a camera of H4D at whatever level I could afford. As neither
this quality and of these things is currently true I will stick with
cost. My way of my DSLRs because they do the job I need them to
testing this was do. As professional photographers we need our kit
to use it as I to do a job, and there is no doubt that Hasselblad
would on a has now got a range of systems that do exactly
shoot, not in a that. You’ve just got to decide if you are doing
laboratory that job. PP
environment, and
I found it responsive
on focus and easy to 101
stop press...
We’re always keeping our eyes open and our ears
to the ground to make sure we bring you the latest news, LATELY WE’VE BEEN
industry rumours and kit from around the world... HEARING...
● At a recent performance, Lady Gaga’s
people issued a release form for
VANGUARD PROFOTO photographers to sign stipulating not
NIVELO TRIPOD PRODAYLIGHT 800 only where and how the image couldn’t
Incredibly lightweight and The Profoto ProDaylight 800 Air is a appear but also demanding that the
compact, the Nivelo 204 has new continuous light source aimed at photographer transfer “all right, title
been designed specifically to photographers entering the world of and interest (including copyright) in
accommodate the latest DSLR film making. Designed for use and to the Photograph(s)” to the artist
compact system cameras. with some (but not all) of Profoto’s Light Shaping known for dressing in meat.
Small enough to tuck Tools, the 800W metal halide base (HMI) lamp Now that’s hard to swallow…
into a rucksack, provides daylight colour temperature, ideal for pro
its substantial HD video shooting as well as stills photography.
features include Built-in radio remote capability allows you to
shock-absorbing switch the unit on and off as well as increase and
rubber feet, decrease light output from 50% through to 100%,
Twist-n-Lock from up to 300m. To find out which Profoto Light
legs and a spirit Shaping Tools the ProDaylight 800 Air is ● Apple’s iPad2 is out, bringing a sinking
level on the compatible with visit feeling in the stomachs of those who
pan head. have yet to pay off their credit card bill for
The 20mm-diameter legs provide the first-generation version. While it
support at 23 degrees, bringing stability to “It’s fantastic; it’s a does contain cameras both back and
this little tripod. The 360-degree rotating front, tech pundits on the internet are
head allows panoramic shots while great ride to be on.” underwhelmed due to the fact that
side-to-side tilting means you can get a HDSLR hero Philip Bloom on the growth screen resolution hasn’t improved and
unique take on the world. The Nivelo 204 is of film making with DSLR cameras, you still need the clunky white cable to
available in black and silver. RRP is £59.99 during a talk at the Convergence Festival connect it to your computer…
(including VAT). held at the British Film Institute, in ● There’s a strange and
London, in March. mesmerising beauty to
the image of a Pentax
LENSPEN SIDEKICK camera taken apart and
We first spotted the LensPen people at Photokina
LOWEPRO COMPUDAY in bits posted by
camera-friendly website
in Germany last September and featured their
handy camera lens cleaning pens in our Photojojo on its
November 2010 issue. This month they were back Lowepro’s latest Tumblr blog recently.
at Focus on Imaging at Birmingham NEC with range is
a nifty new product, the LensPen SideKick. designed for sp04...
Designed to remove those unsightly marks from photographers ● Every revolution
the iPad’s supposedly fingerprint-resistant screen, on the move, to deserves a
it uses the same carbon-based cleaning compound accommodate a soundtrack and
as the award-winning LensPen. The SideKick laptop and a the HD video
comes with one replaceable cleaning head that single camera. revolution is no
lasts for 150 to 200 uses and costs £14.95; it costs The CompuDay Photo range has a messenger different. The laureate of convergence
£10 for two replacement bag and backpack, both of which will hold a might well be Romanian Cosmin Serban,
heads. Available from DSLR, laptop up to 15.6in and other pieces of who has recorded DSLR Song – a tribute
April in the UK from kit such as a portable hard drive. The bag and to all the DSLR film makers out there.
Jessops and independent backpack are aimed at photographers who Listen, if you can bear to, at
retailers, see need to get around and upload images on the go. For more details visit 103
professional inkjet media

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Fotospeed are proud to win
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Read a full review in this issue.
Image: Leo Palmer - FRPS, EFIAP, APSA

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LIGHT METERS UK STOCK Canon UK Stock NIKON Professional Dealer Nikon D200 body £399
Gossen Sixtomat Digital £ 188 UK STOCK- FROM CANON UK ALL UK STOCK FROM - NIKON UK Nikon MB-D200 Grip £75
PRICES INCLUDE VAT Gossen Digi Pro F £ 152 Hasselblad 35mm HC Lens £1495
7D Body £ 1189 D300S Body £ 999 Hasselblad HM 16/32 Film back £ 295 Nikon D60 + 18-55 VR £329
H4D - 31 + 80mm HC lens KIT Gossen Starlite 2 £ 458 7D + 18 - 135mm IS £ 1479 Nikon D80 body £295
Sekonic L 308S £148 D300S + MB-D10 Grip £ 1195 Hasselblad HM 16/32 Film back £ 395
special offer £ 9499 7D + 15 - 85 IS £ 1672 D300S + 17-55 f2.8 D £ 2099 Hasselblad C 50mm f2.8 Lens £350 Nikon D2X body £599
Sekonic L358 £ 224 5D MKII Body £ 1699 Nikon F3HP Body £395
H4D - 31 + CF Adapter £ 9499 Sekonic L 758D £ 392 D300S + 10 - 24mm DX £ 1579 Hasselblad 50mm C Chrome £ 350
5D MKII Body + 24-105L IS £ 2344 D300S + 18-200 VRII £ 1529 Hasselblad 120mm CFE Macro £995 Nikon F3/T HP body £395
H4D - 40 + 80mm £13933 Sekonic L758 DR £ 432 5D MKII Body + 24-70 f2.8L £ 2575 D300S + 16-85mm VR £ 1459 Hasselblad 150mm CT* Lens £ 195 Nikon F5 body £449
H4D- 40 + 35-90mm kit £17730 Sekonic C 500 £ 799 5D MKII + 16-35 f2.8L MK2 £ 2719 Nikkor 10.5mm DX Fisheye £395
D700 Body £ 1699 Hasselblad 150mm CF Lens £450
H4D - 40 Body set £12877 60D Body £ 839 Nikkor 17 - 55mm f2.8G AFS £675
H4D - 50 Body set £19536
POCKETWIZARD 60D + 17/85 IS Lens £1079
D700 + 24 - 70mm f2.8 AFS £ 2960 Hasselblad 160mm CB Lens £595
Nikkor AFS 24- 85mm £250
Mini TT1 CE NIKON IN STOCK £199 D700 + 14 - 24mm f2.8 AFS £ 3049 Hasselblad A12 - Latest type £295
H4D- 50 + 35 - 90mm kit £24388 FLEX TT5 CE NIKON IN STOCK £216 2 Free sensor cleans worth D700 + 24-120mm f4 VR £ 2599 Proshade 6093T + 060 adapter £150 Nikkor 14mm f2.8 ED AFD £695
BUNDLE 1 x Mini 2 x Flex NIKON £549 Bronica RF645 + 65mm Lens £595 Nikkor AFS 18-70mm G Lens £145
NEW H4D- 60 Body KIT £27984 Mini TT1 CE Canon IN STOCK £197 £90 when you buy a Canon D700 + 28-300mm AFS VR £ 2499
FLEX TT5 CE Canon IN STOCK £216 D3S Body £ 3599 Bronica 40mm PE Lens £295 Nikkor 18 - 35mm AFD £295
“Contact us to arrange a Demo” 5D II, 1DS MkIII or 1D Mk4 Bronica 40mm E Lens £195 Sigma 18 - 50mm f2.8 DC - Nikon £229
BUNDLE 1 x Mini 2 x Flex Canon £520
EOS 1 D Mk4 £ 3679 D 3S + 24 - 70mm f2.8 AFS Lens £ 4849
CFV - 39 £ 9709 PLUS II TWIN Pack £249 D 3S + 14 - 24mm f2.8 AFS Lens £ 4899 Bronica 50mm PE Lens ETRS / i £ 250 Nikkor 24 - 85mm f3.5-4.5G IF £250
EOS 1 DS Mk III £ 5399 Bronica 150mm E lens £ 125 Sigma 28mm f1.8 AF - Nikon £130
New CFV - 50 £11336 1 Free sensor cleans worth D 3S + 70 - 200mm f2.8 VRII £ 5248
SIGMA D3X Body £ 5199 Bronica 150mm MC Lens £125 Nikkor AFS 24-120mm f3.5-5.6G VR £325
HC LENSES 8 - 16mm f4 - 5.6 DC £ 529 £45 when you buy a Canon D 3X + 24-70mm f2.8 AFS Lens £ 6199 Bronica 250mm E lens £ 195 Nikkor AFS 70 - 300mm VR £299
28mm Lens HCD £ 3126 10 - 20 mm f 4 / 5.6 EX DC. £ 410 7D / 550D /600D/60D camera D 3X + 14-24mm f2.8 AFS Lens £ 6299 Bronica 50mm f3.5 PS Lens £ 195 Nikkor 50mm f1.2 AIS £495
35 mm Lens HC £ 2662 10 - 20mm f3.5 EX DC HSM £ 479 600D +18 -55 IS £ 749 D 3X + 70-200mm f2.8 VRII Lens £ 6649 Bronica 65mm PS Lens £ 195 Nikkor 300mm f2.8 ED AIS £595
35 - 90 HCD £ 4962 12 - 24 mm f 4.5 / 5.6 EX DG£ 642 600D Body £ 659 D7000 + 18-105 VR II £ 1149 Bronica 150mm PS Lens £125 - £195 PCE Micro Nikkor 45mm f2.8 £1099
50 - 110 mm zoom HC £ 3191 10mm f 2.8 EX DC Fisheye £ 487 550D +18 -55 IS £ 619 D7000 £ 969 Bronica 250mm PS Lens £ 195 Nikkor AFS 24-120mm f3.5-5.6 VR £325
50 mm MK II Lens HC £ 2910 24 - 70 mm f 2.8 EX DG £ 447 550D Body £ 549 14 - 24mm f2.8G AFS £ 1367 Bronica S-36 Tube £ 75 Canon EOS 1D MKIV body £1495
80mm Lens HC £ 1711 24 - 70mm f 2.8 EX DG HSM £610 Powershot G12 £ 419 16 - 35 mm f4G AFS VR £ 877 Bronica E-42 Tube £ 125 Canon EOS 60D + 18-55 IS £750
100mm Lens HC £ 2370 85mm f1.4 EX DG HSM £669 16 - 35 f 2.8L MK2 £1122 17 - 35mm f2.8D AFS £1581 Mamiya 645 AF 55-110mm New £ 695 Canon BG-E4 Grip £99
120mm Macro Lens HC £ 2694 70 - 200mm f2.8 DG OS £979 17 - 40 f 4 L USM £ 609 24mm f1.4G AFS £1735 Mamiya 645 AF Polaroid Back NEW £95 Canon TSE-24mm £695
120mm Macro MK II HC £ 3310 120 - 400mm Apo DG OS £689 17 - 55 f 2.8 EFS £ 829 24 - 70 f2.8G AFS £ 1282 Mamiya 645 110mm f2.8 Lens £ 179 Canon TSE 45mm £ 695
150 mm Lens HCN Lens £ 2478 150 - 500mm Apo OS £ 795 10 - 22 EFS USM £ 633 New 24 - 120mm f4G AFS VR £899 Mamiya 645 210mm f4 Lens £ 105 Sigma EX DC 17-50mm f2.8 OS £395
210 mm Lens HC £ 2586 50 - 500mm Apo OS £1197 17 - 85 EFS IS USM £ 385 10 - 24mm f3.5/4.5 DX £ 589 Mamiya 645 210mm f4 Lens £195 Canon EF 24-85 f3.5-4.5 USM £139
300mm Lens HC £ 3083 TOKINA 18 - 200mm EFS IS USM £ 429 12 - 24mm f4 DX £ 855 Mamiya 645 300mm f5.6 Lens £ 199 Canon EF 20 - 35mm f3.5/4.5 £ 250
HTS Tilt + Shift adapter £ 3774 10 -17mm f 3.5/4.5 ATX Pro £ 509 60 mm EFS Macro £ 347 16 -85mm f 3.5/ 5.6 DX VR £ 469 Mamiya 7 - 43mm Lens + finder £995 Canon EF 28 - 135mm IS £199
1.7 X Teleconverter £ 1139 11 - 16mm f 2.8 ATX Pro £ 560 24 - 70 f2.8 L USM £987 17 - 55 mm f 2.8 DX £1109 Mamiya 7 - 50mm Lens Ex Demo £995 Canon EF 28 - 200mm f3.5-5.6 £250
GIL - GPS £ 523 16 - 28mm f2.8 ATX Pro DX £ 849 24 - 105mm f 4 L IS £ 899 18 - 200mm DX VR II £ 539 Mamiya 7 - 65mm Lens £709 Canon EF 50mm f1.4 USM £245
Battery Grip 7.2V £183 16 - 50mm f2.8 ATXPro £ 621 24 - 105mm f 4L IS White Box £799 NEW 28 - 300mm AFS VR £ 779 Mamiya 7 - 150mm Lens £505 Canon EF 100mm f2.8 Macro USM £299
X1 Scanner £ 9499 100mm Macro f2.8 £ 407 TSE 17mm f4L £1999 PC-E 24mm f3.5 Tilt +Shift £1449 Mamiya 7 - 150mm Lens + finder £695 Sigma 28 - 300mm Macro EOS £149
X5 Scanner £ 15095 TSE 24 mm f 3.5 L II £1749 35mm f1.8 G AFS DX £ 175 Mamiya 7 - 210mm Lens + finder £607 Sigma 105mm f2.8 Macro EOS £299
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X-Rite ColorChecker Passport £79
500/500 Classic kit £730 50mm f1.2 L USM £1310 80 - 400 mm f 4.5 / 5.6 VR £ 1149 Mamiya RZ Polaroid back NEW £ 125 BILLINGHAM STOCKIST
500/500C Pulsar Kit £820 70 - 200 f 4 L USM £ 499 200 -400mm f4 AFS VR II £ 5199 RB67 Pro SD + 50 + 90mm lenses £895 550 £434 445 £237 335 £220 225 £212
Spyder 3 Pro £107 555 £268 307 £ 247 207 £229 107 £212
500R/500R Travel Pak£1326 70- 200mm f4 L IS £ 922 200mm f2 AFS VR II £ 4432 RB67 180mm PRO SD Lens NEW £195
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18mm f3.5 Distagon - Nikon ZF.2 £ 1098
M9 BLACK BODY £4899 70- 300 f 4 5.6 L IS £ 1199 600mm f4 AFS VR £ 7433 Contax TVS £195
18mm f3.5 Distagon - Canon ZE £ 1055
500/500/500 PRO Kit £1741 60 mmf 2.8 AFS Micro £ 408 Pentax 645 - 200mm f4 £ 295
M9 demo in stock - take a look 750/750 PRO Kit £1291 85 mm f 1.8 USM £ 319 21mm f2.8 Distagon - Nikon ZF.2 £ 1395
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21mm f2.8 Elmarit asp M £2807 750/750/750 PRO Kit £1994 100 mm f 2.8 Macro £ 417 105mm f 2.8 Micro VR £ 639 Minolta booster II £ 50
28mm f2 Distagon - Nikon ZF.2 £1006
24mm f2.8 Elmarit asp M £2573 1000/1000 PRO Kit £1517 100mm f2.8L IS Macro £ 749 SB 700 Speedlight £ 259 Leica winder M £ 99
28mm f2 Distagon - Canon ZE £ 982
35mm f2.5 Summarit M £1153 1000/1000PRO Travel £1999 300 mm f 4 IS USM £ 1195 SB 900 Speedlight £ 342 35mm f2 Distagon - Nikon ZF.2 £ 846
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75mm f2.5 Summarit M £1122
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X1 BLACK £1395 Pulsar twin pack £ 233 1.4x EXTENDER III £ 499 medium format, rangefinder POLAROID FILM 85mm f1.4 Planar - Nikon ZF.2 £ 1006
V-LUX 20 £489 Pulsar Trigger Card £75 2x EXTENDER III £ 499 6x6 / 6x7 folding camera, with PX100 Silvershade B+W £18.38 85mm f1.4 Planar - Canon ZE £ 1000
D - LUX 5 £645 Pocket Wizard card £107 580 EX MKII Speedlight £369 PX600 Silvershade B+W £18.38 100mm Makro-Planar - Nikon ZF.2 £1415
430 EX MK II Speedlight £199 lens hood + case + film £1699 100mm Makro-Planar - Canon ZE £1423








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legend James Nachtwey
“I have been a witness, and these pictures are my testimony. The events
I have recorded should not be forgotten and must not be repeated.”
New Hampshire, where he studied art history exhaust himself, he set about exhausting us.
and political science. Then, though, he was swept The idea, I guess, is to go beyond desensitisation,
up and away by the radical tenor of the times. to a place where we cannot not look.
In particular, he was driven to action by The book is prefaced with a quote from hell’s
the Vietnam war. Even more particularly, by the own poet-in-residence, Dante: “There sighs,
images of that conflict. As he has said, he and lamentations and loud wailings resounded
his generation were presented with a choice through the starless air, so that from the beginning
about what to think about the world. They could it made me weep.”
believe what they were told or they could He was in New York the day the Twin Towers
attend to the evidence they saw in photographs. were hit and fell. He lived nearby. “I heard a
Nick Ut’s picture of a naked, running, napalmed sound that was out of the ordinary. I went to the
Phan Thi Kim Phúc. Philip Jones Griffiths’s window and saw the tower burning. I made my
book, Vietnam, Inc. way there through the smoke. It was virtually
He decided to become a war photographer. deserted, and it seemed like a movie set from a
Deliberately, he set about learning his trade. science fiction film. Very apocalyptic.
In 1976, he took a staff job on the Albuquerque Very strange ambiance of the sunlight filtering
Journal. By 1980, he was where he wanted to be: through the dust and the destroyed wreckage of
in New York, a freelance photojournalist, ready, the buildings lying in the street.”
willing and able to go to war. In 1981, he I’ll pause him there. Because that’s
Peter Silverton explores the went to Northern Ireland – the time of the IRA where Nachtwey’s tragic genius lies: his capacity
career of the American hunger strikes. Since then, there’s barely been for aestheticising conflict and destruction.
photojournalist James Nachtwey, a war or conflict he didn’t turn up for. You might Or, at least, to find an aesthetic in them. All kinds
even say: It’s not a war until Nachtwey’s there. of war photographers record, vividly, the
an unrelenting documentor Rwanda. Chechnya. Bosnia. Famine in destruction of war. The thing about Nachtwey,
of human tragedy for more Sudan. Romanian orphanages. Kosovo. though, is when all around is death and horror and
than 30 years. The invasion of Iraq, where a grenade attack confusion and blood and pain, he can make a
smashed up his foot. He kept photographing formally composed, resonant image of it.
James Nachtwey was born March 14 1948, a medic who was treating the other injured, until Not glamorous but aesthetically saturated,
in Syracuse, New York state. As Robert Capa he lost consciousness. By the end of the generally with sorrow – the anguish of the
was to the middle of the 20th century, so following year, he was up and off east, to cover Adagietto in Mahler’s Fifth Symphony.
Nachtwey was to its last decades. He is the the aftermath of the 2004 Asian tsunami. Back to 9/11. “As I was photographing the
late 20th-century war photographer – outraged There is rarely a name on a Nachtwey caption. destruction of the first tower, the second tower
that, after the Holocaust and Vietnam, war is His subjects are not people but ‘people’, fell and I was standing right under it. I was
still, shockingly, an ever-present. He’s won the representatives of human tragedy – and therefore underneath this avalanche of falling debris. I was
Robert Capa Gold Medal five times. of us all. Hence the echoic power of his in a state of disbelief. The scenes were very
Like Capa, like Goya, he is powered by the urge images. There is nothing romantic about his wars, familiar. But now, it was literally in my own
to document. “I have been a witness, and these though. He doesn’t share other photographers’ backyard. And I think that one thing that
pictures are my testimony. The events I have admiration for front-line soldiers. Yet nor Americans are learning from this is that we are
recorded should not be forgotten and must not does he share the nagging doubts of the latest now part of the world in a way in which we never
be repeated.” That’s the opening statement on generation of war photographers – that their have been before.”
his website. His is not a world of ironies or images can actually prolong and deepen wars, that So he goes, uncoloured by cynicism, seemingly
doubts; it’s one of rage – an anger that has yet to the relationship between aid-giving rates inexhaustible. Afghanistan. Haiti earthquake.
be assuaged or diluted. Never will be, perhaps. and images of hacked-off limbs is all too often Victims of AIDS and drug-resistant TB. So it
Never can be, even. a mutual one. goes, perhaps inexhaustibly. PP
He grew up in Massachusetts and went to His 1999 book, Inferno, is nearly 500 pages
Dartmouth, the small Ivy League college in long and weighs almost 5kg. Unable to