Monday, 16 May 2011

UK Tattoo Industry 'Best Photographer' Award 2011

This weekend I was away shooting in Brighton for the 'Great Escape' music industry expo. Meanwhile, in Liverpool they were holding a huge tattoo convention and the 'UK Tattoo Industry Award' ceremony.
I'm honoured to say that I was awarded 'Best Photographer' for the second year running, and would like to thank everyone who has supported me.

Best yet, the trophy is apparently a skull with an eagle holding a tattoo machine. Which sounds amazing, beats the oscars hands down!


Friday, 6 May 2011

HMV "My Inspiration" Campaign ; The King Blues.


Patience is a virtue. Especially when waiting to see the finished artwork for a major advertising campaign that uses your photos. The 'My Inspiration' series is a pretty cool one. Paul Rees (Editor In Chief, Q Magazine) explains the background to it on the HMV website.....

" One of the great truisms of this business we call music is that musicians are rarely happier than when talking about any musician other than themselves. It has been my experience that not only do they offer up far more in such circumstances, but also with a far greater degree
of interest and insight. Hence the fascination, and the enduring success, of HMV’s My Inspiration series, for it is built on this very foundation.

A second fact the series has highlighted is the power of the written word in music. The pen is
not only mightier than the sword, but at least the equal of the guitar too. Bob Dylan may have brought us the sound of thin, wild mercury and of country rock, and much more of musical import besides, but his stream-of-consciousness poetry and all those acute reflections on the human condition in all its many forms have resonated as loudly with Bono, Paul McCartney and all of his other fellow songwriters who have made him the most cited artist for inspiration. There are wonders aplenty in Dylan’s music, but does anything stop you dead in your tracks with the sheer force of its clarity? Pick any line from, say, Just Like A Woman - “With her fog, her amphetamine and her pearls, she takes just like a woman” will do – and each and every one of them will pull you up, time and time again.

Bowie (to name but one other My Inspiration perennial) brought us Ziggy Stardust and the Thin White Duke, the glacial funk of Station To Station and the white boy soul of Young Americans, but I’d contend he’s summoned forth nothing that will linger longer than Life On Mars’s drop-dead perfect opening line: “It’s a godawful small affair, to the girl with the mousy hair.” So it is with all great songs and songwriters – whatever magic might be conjured musically, it is invariably the words that hold us fast to the tune and come to define our relationship with it.

I came to my own favourite artist, Bruce Springsteen, via a lyric - “The screen door slams, Mary’s dress waves/Like a vision she dances across the porch as the radio plays”, from Thunder Road - that distilled all the earthiness and grandeur and wide-open possibilities of his music into two lines. I suspect you’ll have found your way to your own inspirations through much the same route.

To find out more about the King Blues and check out their music, visit