Friday, 22 July 2016

Good things comes to those who wait - and Carl for The Sunday Times Magazine


It was four days before Christmas, midday and I had just finished my last shoot of the year. Time to go to Devon to see my family for a well earned break.

My phone rings.
“Charlie, are you still in London?”
“Can you photograph this evening with his brother Carl?”

And so it was, no going to Devon for me on that day. And the waiting began. You see we didn’t know anything more at this point. Where would we be photographing them, when would we be meeting them or even if it was going to happen or not. We knew nothing really, but we had hope.

So I prepared for the shoot, got my gear together and positioned myself and my assistant in a cafe in central London. We waited hard by drinking coffee and talking about photography.

Finally we got some information: we would be photographing them at 8pm. It was 7pm… not much time. So we quick footed it with all my gear over to the hotel, and started harassing the poor lady in charge for a room to photograph Mr and his brother in. After some serious persuasion we got an amazing suite for out shoot, moved in and got set up just in time. The nerves started to kick in… What would he be like? Would he be friendly or not? How long would we get with him?

But you can’t be nervous forever and after an hour we still had no news of him, and no idea if he was actually going to turn up or not. So I prepared some more, did a few more test shots of my assistant and decided that everything was still ready, just like it had been an hour ago. Another hour passed...

Finally, at 11pm I had my moment. Will and Carl arrived, tired but prepared and stepped in front of my camera...


Sunday, 12 June 2016

Brits in Europe Launches in the Sunday Times Magazine

Kathryn plays the fairy in the Venice pantomime that is put on every two years. She spends her winters in Venice and her summers in Yorkshire. She likes the anonymity that living in a different country brings.
Age: 64

Time living abroad: 8 years
Residence: Venice
Occupation: Retired
In the run up to the EU referendum on the 23rd of June I have been photographing British people living in Europe. The project launches today in the Sunday Times Magazine. 
From Morris dancers in Denmark and archers in Estonia, to students in Spain and pantomime fairies in Italy this project captures the lives of British people who have chosen to leave their homeland and create a new life for themselves. Featuring 71 portraits of British people living in 7 different EU countries the project captures the variety of lifestyles that exist across the continent and shows us a new side of the European debate.
With the prospect of the UK leaving the European Union I was determined to see what life was like for those Brits who live in the EU. Over 1.2 million British people currently live in other EU countries, yet hardly anyone is talking about them. No-one knows what will happen to them should we vote to leave. Will they lose their right to residency? Will they loose their pension? Will they be able to own their own businesses or access healthcare easily?

My hope for the project is to get people to look at the European debate from a different point of view. I want people to move beyond the stereotypes and statistics and see the human stories that will be affected by their decision on the 23rd of June.
Read all the people's stories on the project's website:
Bob brought Morris dancing to Denmark when he moved there 32 years ago. He had to give up his British citizenship to live there permanently and is married to a Dane. 
Age: 70
Time living abroad: 40 years
Occupation: retired

Isla and her brothers moved to Copenhagen when their father got a new job working in the pharmaceutical industry there. They go to international schools and are learning to speak Danish.

Age: 3 years

Time living abroad: 3 years

Occupation: Child

Residence: Copenhagen

Louise is a dancer in the Royal Swedish Ballet in Stockholm. She trained in Britain before finding a job abroad. The company has dancers from all over the world and uses English as it’s primary language.
Age: 29
Time living abroad: 4 years
Residence: Stockholm
Occupation: Ballet Dancer 

Leena moved to Belgium when her husband was given a job in the EU institutions. She says life is more comfortable and relaxed in the international community in Brussels than in London. They are expecting a second child soon so her mother is living with them to help out.

Age: 35

Time living abroad: 5 years

Occupation: Mother

Residence: Brussels

Geoff is the captain of a super-yacht based in Genoa. He spends half his time at sea and the other half with his Italian wife near Lake Garda. His misses British food, particularly in the winter so gets his friend to send him British food parcels.

Age: 63

Time living abroad: 7 years

Occupation: Captain

Residence: Verona and Genoa Harbour