Ok lets start with how I work. As you can see I work almost entirely with female models. I have worked a lot with children but I can never share pictures obviously.
I am available to work collaboratively so long as the arrangement is win:win all round. Anything else is not sustainable. Projects must benefit both my portfolio and creative endeavour. I get told endlessly that I shouldnt work for free especially after all these years. However I only work where there is something of value on offer. I dont believe in exploitation on any level and find it incredibly awkward to ask for make up artists etc or models to work TF*. But in exchange I know that I offer an excellent and comprehensive service as well as access to 5 years of experiences and contacts. So it is not free, if you see value beyond just in cash terms.
Guide prices are available on this site and certainly I apply them for designers.
Kind though it is, my portfolio is very healthy and if a designer is selling her product in Qatar then Its only fair and polite to pay for collaborator’s time.
Personally I will be prioritising certain shoot styles. I want to do far more lingerie, boudior, art-nude, edgy shoots but am conscious of being viewed as a pervy old guy. These are genres I have neglected over the years. I’ve had plenty of lovely ball gowns and prom dresses and they bore me to be honest. I like to bring out the sexy side of models without resorting to anything smutty. Also retouching and editing is far more rewarding. The work of Terry King is a good example of the type of work I’d like to emulate. Please have a look at my Pinterest boards and send me pictures that inspire you 🙂
Why dont you shoot catwalk no more?
Well catwalk is where I started and made many great friends and had lots of fun. However, I struggled to see the creativity where you have a bunch of people all getting the same shot. Often with much better cameras. I found the press pit too male, bit geeky, trainspottery and a bit boring tbh!
I’ve always gravitated towards female company so models and make up artists grabbed my attention naturally.
Also I had a few bad experiences should I even make the mistake of sitting in the wrong place! YES Fashion even had a guy tell me he was going to beat me up in the break!!! Lol!
Philosophy: Work for free???
I often get complaints by models saying “I aint gonna work for free though…” My response is that everything I do now involves value! I dont work for free either but by changing the paradigm I am able to see the value attached to most experiences in life. A “free” shoot I did in 2012 saw my images feature on a CD release on iTunes, YouTube and Vevo. Not to mention follow up work and a valuble relationship being established.
I avoid egos. I recognise the need for an attitude or mood for the camera but anyone who thinks a pretty face makes them important does not attract me. I much prefer the humble person who does not actually know how they look. It is a photographerds job to bring that out. In addition I find humble models nicer to work with.
I dont like timewasters. It displays a lack of respect. We all get delayed by trains but then again we all have mobile phones to phone ahead. If someone is 4hrs late and then blames the MUA for leaving then they wont work with me again! Its not my time that gets wasted its the make up artists, hair stylists, designers etc not to mention studio fees that get spent.
“Models deserve to get paid. The rest of the team dont.” Bollocks. That attitude is horrible and so disrespectul. (see point #1!)
I dont like fashion!
No. I’ve not been remotely interested in labels since the days of “Casuals” in the 1980s. I was 14. And a kid!!! £500 for a Louis Vuitton belt!!! Ha ha! No mate
But I do love style. Shoots in Ibiza and Mallorca this year were amazing and featured boho looks scraped together from market stall designers or what the team had in their wardrobes. Charity shops interest me so much more than Bond Street!
Made in Chelsea?
No you weren’t and even if you were definitely dont brag about it!
Mayfair nightclubs are shit. No ones impressed by those sparkly candles. As someone who grew up through Acid House and The Hacienda, a table with Grey Goose(?!) and Champagne makes me laugh!!! The best clubs that remain in London are the small venues in Shoreditch and Hackney or the smaller ones no ones ever heard of. The Laser Cave in Hackney wick was the best event I stumbled across in years!
Oooh %22Like Me!!!%22
A fact of life on facebook seems to be that a selfie of a pretty girl gets scores of likes regardless of the times we’ve seen the same thing before!
A photo that has taken 3hrs of retouching and thousands of pounds of equipment set up gets a fraction if lucky!
I dont get it but thats FB life!
These can be very devisive and utterly meaningless. One really irritating arrangement seems to depend on being mates with the person awarding (?!!!) and part of the broader clique. From what I can see it does not reward talent and I never vote for you….especially not if you ask me!!! Lol
A Russian model I collaborated with really struggled to ever get this concept!!! “Its not all about winning Pete” was what she famously said to me. I gave up at that point lol!!! She seemed to be perfectly happy when she was winning though (accomodation, airport pick ups, make up, hair stylists, designer dresses haha!)
Anyway I’ve now moved on to work with decent respectful people. And those people will get my votes, attention and recommendations.
Are you decent?
I meet so many people whilst out networking and the constant narrative I have with friends in this business is whether any new person a good decent person. Experiences in recent years have unearthed a sociopath who attemped to destroy friendships and marriages, a compulsive liar who when discovered attempted to destroy everyone else on the team! He always showed off his LV handbags whilst living in a council flat in Islington!! Highly amusing in retrospect but very damaging at the time! But he did have the letters PR after his name so he must have been important lol!!