Sunday, 21 July 2013

Life's a beach

While the snow fell endlessly earlier this year, Maddy and I booked a trip away to Valencia for a couple of months ahead - based mainly on the criteria that it must be baking hot and include a beach. When we finally arrived last week, the first thing that hit us was the heat - and the over-abundance of fruit sold on every corner. 

With tropical ideals in mind, we ate cherries and peaches each day on the bright sandy beaches, drank orange juice cocktails on terraces in the evening, and cycled around the city taking in the palm trees and splashes of tiled colour on every building. We visited the Calatrava-designed complex in a surreal storm of purple lightning, and wandered through the cacti in the botanical gardens. 

I carried my camera everywhere with an outline of creating a series based on the colours, forms and sheer heat of the city traced out. I wanted to combine these with Maddy's and my own portraits, taking direction from what I'd seen earlier that day. And most of all I wanted to channel the tropical heat of the holiday and our long, sunny days in the city.

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Smoke of the city rising up into the sky

In Janaury when it was cold and clear in London I went round to Tony Benn's place just behind Notting Hill, to interview him with Isabella for the paper. He talked about his childhood, and his hopeful ideas for politics still today - all while clicking insistently on his lighter to try to get his pipe going. It wasn't until he got a moment before I took the picture that he finally lit it - I snapped him just as he lifted it up and breathed in deeply. The interview can be found here.  

Friday, 7 December 2012

Hemmed in by the desert

The Botanic Gardens in Cambridge are lined with incredible wooden-framed greenhouses, full of giant cacti, tropical plants and tiny shrubs. Inside, they're baking hot and full of light. We ran a feature in the paper on places to visit in the town, and so I cycled over to here to take some pictures of the gardens - I think we ended up with a big cactus on our front page, which was pretty great.

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

From the terraces inward

At the beginning of August I went to Athens to visit Aris, where we walked around in the blistering heat, stopping off to drink coffee with ice cubes floating in the glass. We visited open air summer cinemas, gallery rooftops for glasses of wine, the disused Olympic stadium, and bakeries for cheese and spinach pies. We drove to the beach, sat on his grandmother's terrace for the best view of the Acropolis in the city, and ate pieces of watermelon at a local market in the suburbs. 

I felt for a while that I could see little evidence of the Greek crisis, but derelict store fronts became more noticeable as we covered more of the city. I was amazed by how cheap it could be to eat out in the city, and many galleries had weekly openings until midnight free of charge. I was also surprised by how late everything operated until, with films being screened at 1am, and one bar that we went to closing only when the sun came up and it became too hot to remain in the open air.