TAG Heuer brand shoot

There are times when jobs can come in relatively late in the day, as it was with this one. Tag Heuer had asked influencer marketing agency The Fifth and Jamie McCormack’s James & James production company to produce video content for them featuring Instagram influencers Sam Fane (AKA Seen Through Glass) and Melissa Holbrook-Akposoe (AKA Melissa’s Wardrobe). However, one week before the shoot Tag decided they needed stills photography captured alongside the video.

We shot at the amazing Duke of London, the car hub in Brentford home to an mighty array of vintage and classic cars. It just so happened that Sam had recently taken on a studio in a building in the same complex and had managed to negotiate us using DoL as a location for the shoot.

Jamie and his crew shot interview footage with Sam in the morning with me slotting in during breaks in filming to capture stills of him, with the same schedule applied to Melissa during the second half of the day.

I’d decided to bring my old-as-heck Mamiya C330 film camera to grab a few film shots alongside the digital images as I felt it would be a nice addition to the feel of what we were shooting. It seemed I wasn’t alone, as Jamie had also brought with him a Super 16mm camera for capturing film footage.

With a tight schedule laid out, I really had to maximise my opportunities to get a satisfactory amount of images during the day. Both Sam and Melissa were incredibly patient and hospitable in allowing me to get what I needed.

After the shoot, having narrowed down my selections that night I was told the next morning that the brand had decided to move forward the schedule of deliverables - they needed the first set of images by that afternoon. No biggy, eh.

The rest of that morning was spent sending edits over to Stefan at The Fifth for submitting to Tag for review and to do revisions. The brand were happy with both video and stills content and particularly pleased with how promptly we delivered the final footage and images.  

You can see more of the content here.

Editorial for Flanelle Magazine

This was quite the shoot. I had been talking with Freya, the stylist I worked with on it for around two months beforehand through a series of virtual meetings and bouncing moodboards back and forth. We finally settled on a seaside-themed shoot, and whittled down the locations we had in mind to Hastings in Sussex.

Since taking part in an incredible webinar with the photographer Campbell Addy  - and all the amazing tips he generously shared including writing out concepts or sketching out ideas before a shoot - I’ve been sketching ideas in a similar way. This has been particularly useful for me, being someone who uses a format in which every shot costs and every shot therefore counts. I use it primarily as a guide; I might not necessarily use all the ideas I’ve sketched out but at the same time it helps me focus on what I want to get out of the shoot and cuts down time too. 

Here are a few examples:

I took the train down to Hastings on a Saturday afternoon the previous weekend to scout for locations, and the weather had been incredible sunshine, with late golden hour light. This being an outdoor location shoot in the UK, we knew that we had to contend with the unpredictability of the British weather. But we were shooting in the middle of July, so probably the safest time to shoot outside right? WRONG…wrong, wrong, wrong.

Keeping a close eye on the forecast in the days leading up to the shoot, I was being promised a full day of sunny, beautifully clear weather. Shoot day however was something else entirely. All was going well (apart from one of the models not being told by her booker that we were driving her out of London to shoot - yes for all she knew we could’ve been kidnapping her) and the weather on arriving in Hastings was dry and bright. It was only an hour later when we had prepped the two models’ first outfits that the rain started. 

We spent the next 40 minutes sat in cars, trying to decide when would be a good time to bravely venture out or whether to cancel shoot entirely. We went for the former, as by that point the rain had calmed down a little, and I could feel that we were still managing to capture good stuff

I gotta thank our models, Scarlett and Ruoyi for their patience it was was particularly challenging weather, which got only worse when we turned up at our second location that day, the beach and sand dunes of Camber Sands. And do you know what was the real kicker? Not 20 minutes down the road during our journey back to London, the sky turned a beautiful pink and the sun broke through the clouds, as though the weather said f*ck you. 

Anyhoo, the pictures turned out really well, well enough to get published in Flanelle magazine. You can see the feature here

Doorstep Portraits

I recently teamed up with the wonderful @heardinlondon to see how we’d work together to get a different angle on the same moment. I’ve been cycling to shoots lately, which is an essential part of any photography project for me with the current situation. I shot on 35mm film, she on digital. The project centred around capturing socially-distanced portraits of people who for very good reasons were unable to attend the recent Black Lives Matter protests in London 

This was our first project together.

@sistahnisha & @yasminaaak

@sistahnisha & @yasminaaak (image courtesy of @heardinlondon)

As @sistahnisha is shielding her parents from COVID-19, she hasn’t been able to attend the protests. She did however make @yasminaaak this sign to take with her. It was her way of making sure that a piece of her was there to support the movement, and her friend. We discussed the importance of friendship and community at this time.


‘The thing worse than rebellion is the thing that causes rebellion’ (Frederick Douglass)

We also visited @kitchenno7 in North London. Rather than a placard, she decided that the thing she felt represented both her heart being at the #BlackLivesMatterUK protests whilst needing to still stay at home, was this painting of her Dad which always makes her smile. We spoke about how lockdown had brought up a lot of deep grieving for parental bereavement. This is a seminal moment where she feels her father with her.

@kitchenno7 (image courtesy of @HeardinLondon)

“People often say that fashion repeats itself every 20 years. What I see now is that protest against injustice repeats, and repeats and fiercely repeats. I am the daughter of a black man, the great granddaughter of slaves. I have the genes of rebellion in my blood. My anger at the racism, micro and macro aggressions that I and my family and my ancestors have received over the centuries has eaten at me. It has affected my being.”

When you look at me I want you to see a black woman; a woman of mixed heritage, but still, a black woman. Don’t tell me, “I don’t see colour”. To say that is to say that you don’t see us, that you can ignore us, that we have no worth to you, that we do not exist. If you say that you had no idea, until now, that prejudice, injustice and racism was still such an issue then I can only conclude you have been deaf and blind or selfish and uncaring to the world around you. If yesterday wasn’t the time to wake up then today is the day to get fucking woke. And don’t even try touching my hair!”

Whilst continuing to cycle in the rain to support folk who could not make it to the protests, @heardinlondon and I visited @sachanotsasha, with her children Ezra’Jacob and Nehemiah’Grace.

“Unfortunately, we couldn’t attend the protests as keeping the kiddies safe was at the forefront. Nevertheless, we stand with everyone and everything black. Thank you for taking a stand and speaking. Your voices, our voices and their voices will be heard.”

@sashanotsasha (image courtesy of @HeardinLondon)

You can see more of the images @heardinlondon has shot for the project, as well as her other wonderful work HERE.

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