Locations

Your subject may claim they have nothing good enough to wear, but after browsing this section, you can never again say that you have nowhere good enough to shoot! As long as the lighting is good, there’s usually a way to make any location work. Almost everywhere has potential as a location for photography. It’s all too easy to focus on the problems with a potential location – overhead cables, litter along the curb, a street sign and so on …

Group Graffiti Portrait In London

What’s the best way to include a variety of locations in your images from a single shoot? Go for a walk with your subject(s), just as I did with these five friends. This graffiti wall was just one of the perfect locations we came across. These five friends are all from Norway (although the woman who contacted me to arrange the shoot, Cathrine, now lives in the UK). They wanted some portraits together in London, so I arrived there bright …

Getting The Most From Any Location

Almost everywhere has potential as a location for photography. It’s all too easy to focus on the problems with a potential location – overhead cables, litter along the curb, a street sign and so on – but most barriers can be overcome with a change of angle or crop. Whether you want to add narrative with a background, use it to add visual interest and texture or simply keep it plain so that all the focus is on your subject, …

Portrait of an Artist at Her House

Here’s how I photographed one of the world’s best portrait painters, using just window-light and white walls for a relaxed, confident portrait in her home. Lucy is a world-renowned portrait artist. I was asked to photograph her in her house for a magazine article, so I wanted create an image where she looks relaxed, confident and very much ‘at home’. Here’s how I approached it. I chose to take this shot in Lucy’s beautiful kitchen. It’s painted nearly all white …

Film-Inspired Group Portrait

This group portrait was taken under a bridge which featured in Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. Here’s how I managed the guys’ different heights & outfits. This portrait of Charles, James and William was taken in the London street where Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels was filmed. The textured brick wall adds a gritty, urban feel to the shot, matched by the confident poses and cool expressions of my subjects. We were just under the shade of a …

Welder At Work

When shooting people carrying out their jobs, sometimes you have to go beyond your own job description to ensure a happy client… This portrait was taken as part of a commercial commission from a forge. They create the most incredible work for very, very, very wealthy clients. I saw this welder working in the middle of the forge and I thought there might just be a shot in it… I had been watching the welder work for a while, but …

Spotting A Location… After A Shoot

This portrait was taken after a shoot had officially finished, yet it’s my favourite of them all. Once you train your eye to notice great light in a location, you’ll find it even when you’re not looking. A private medical practice in Harley Street commissioned me to create portraits of their team, to be used on their new website. David is a surgeon at the practice and – like his colleagues – was lovely, but not very comfortable in front …

Portable Flash At The Skatepark

You don’t need complicated tricks to create a great action portrait at your local skatepark. Height, consistency and timing are more important. I was photographing a BMX rider at the skatepark when I was nearly run over by a skateboarder, Louis (pictured). Louis had been flying across the area that I was photographing every minute or so, so I had seen how good he was. I loved his style, too, so asked him if I could photograph him. Happily, he …

A Window-Lit Portrait in a Client’s Home

What to look for when shooting a windowlit portrait at a client’s home and why negative space provides a welcome visual pause in your portrait sets. Creating a portrait at someone’s home is a challenge but also an opportunity, for two reasons. Firstly, you are capturing your subject in the environment where they feel most relaxed and comfortable, which means the whole experience is less intimidating for your subject than attending a studio. Secondly, a shot like this counts as …

Whizzing out the frame in a Little Italy Van

What happens when a commercial client challenges you to create an unusual portrait in a place where the light isn’t quite right? You get creative, work out what the final image should look like, then find out a way to make it happen, of course… This was a commercial shoot for Little Italy, an espresso bar a few hundred yards down the street from us in Haddenham, Buckinghamshire. In lieu of payment, Little Italy display my portraits in their customer …