Biography

Background

I was born in Yorkshire and studied photography at Wolverhampton Polytechnic before moving to London in 1991. I initially worked as a photographer before focusing more on illustration and computer design. Since then I have worked in many sections of the design and publishing industry. I live and work in Sussex with my wonderful family and our two crazy Scottish Terriers (Fergus and Rufus). I am still inspired by the incredible landscapes around me and discovering amazing new places to photograph in Sussex, and beyond.

You can read an interview with me in Sussex Every Day and a small article about my work in Seaford Scene.

Inspiration

I have always enjoyed landscape photography and when I moved to Sussex in 2001 I began to explore the local countryside, and particularly the Ashdown Forest and the South Downs, with my dogs and my camera. It is from this ever-expanding collection of images that I draw the inspiration for my artworks.

These photographs are digitally merged with other photographs, paintings, drawings, textures, and found objects to create the final pieces. Some of the pictures are more literal interpretations of the places I have photographed, while others are more conceptual or graphic in their approach, but all seek to evoke the beauty, drama, and atmosphere of the landscapes around me.

Trees?

One question I am often asked is “why trees?”. For me landscapes without trees feel like they are missing something, trees are such an integral part of our perception of the world about us. I feel drawn to these incredible organisms, which can be diminutive, delicate, monumental or sculptural and being in the forest at dawn their serene beauty is so atmospheric. They provide so much for us, food, shade, air, materials and have played a huge part in human evolution and history. Recent scientific discoveries about how they communicate and help one another or their symbiotic relationship with Mycorrhizal fungi reveal another level of complexity and harmony in their ecosystems. Living such long lives it seems as though they become extensions of the land itself and that is why they have become the focus of my art.

GPS coordinates & Map

The names of the artworks often refer to the GPS coordinates where the original photograph was taken and so that the locations can be found on my Interactive Map and visited in person.The designs are available as Giclee Fine Art prints or as Brushed Aluminium Di-Bond Prints, both in various sizes.

Career 2013 - 2018 : JellyJam

Before embarking on my artistic career I had spent five years working with JellyJam Entertainment in the US. Initially I was working as a freelancer developing the characters for one of their properties (The Moodsters) and ended up working full time for them as Creative Director designing and developing everything from books to (award winning) EQ kids toys to apps to Social Media campaigns. It was a very interesting time in my career, learning a lot of new skills and something I had never imagined I would have been involved with. It was especially nice because my daughter was the right age for the products we were making so I could use her as our ‘Guinea Pig’


Career 2000 - 2015 : Aardvart

My involvement with JellyJam began after their President saw my Aardvart illustrations online. Aardvart was set up by myself and friend Louise Gardner who was a brilliant children’s book illustrator. I had been dabbling with 3D software for a while and Louise asked if it would be possible to recreate some of her drawing in 3D. I took up the challenge and the results were hilarious. These first pictures eventually appeared on a range of greetings cards and demand for the work started to grow. After leaving our studio and both moving out of London it became more difficult to collaborate but I continued to work on Aardvart projects and over the years I worked on lots of books, magazines and packaging.


Career 1998 - 2018 : Newspapers & Magazines

Some of my major clients through this period were newspapers such as The FT, The Sunday Times Magazine, Newsweek and The Telegraph. The deadlines were always very short, most often a call at 6pm with a deadline at 9am the following morning, but were great fun because you never knew what you were going to be asked to do - like a picture of Kofi Annan made of bullets or David Cameron dressed as Superman or a car with teeth!


Career 1994 - 2013 : Illustration

I had been interested in illustration since doing my degree and I gradually began to switch my attention from straight photography to creating illustrations with my photographs. Originally this was done with prints, a scalpel and paint but with the development of design packages for computers I teamed up with a couple of other illustrators and we bought a Apple Mac (8100) in 1995. It was suddenly possible to create anything we could imagine and we had to work in shifts as demand for all our work was very high. I was mostly working in publishing back then, doing a lot of book covers and illustrated books on subjects from yoga to technology to the Grateful Dead! I believe that this was when I developed the beginings of the style that I still use today and its origins can be seen im my works, even from the mid 1990's.


Career 1993 - 1997 : Photography

Having decided that the area of photography that interested me the most was studio based still life I began to take out my portfolio and pick up a few clients of my own. I was lucky that a local photographer I was working with had a great, well equipped studio close to where I live and hired the space to me when it was not in use. I was doing a lot of product photography for a company that made prototype technology, which was fascinating, though now the products seem very dated. I very much enjoyed the challenges of lighting objects and worked for Cosmopolitan, and Mark Wilkinson. I also sold my pictures through The Image Bank for many years.


Career 1988 - 1993 : Photographic Assistant

I started as an assistant during summer holidays from Poly, working for SCS in Wiltshire and after I finished my degree and moved to London I worked with a wide variety of photographers. This gave me wonderful experience in many different fields of photography from fashion to portraits and Still life to interiors, which helped me decide which area I wanted to specialise in as well a broad knowledge of the technical aspects of photography and lighting. I was greatly helped in the setting up of my business by a loan from the Princes Trust and met Prince Charles at an exhibition of PT business, where I was showing my work.


Career 1987 - 1991 : Further Education

I studied for a degree in Visual Communications (specialising in Photography) at Wolverhampton Polytechnic. It was during my studies here that I developed an interest in landscape photography (creating a book of landscapes for my degree show) and using photography as illustrations (creating graphic novel version of Alice in Through the Looking Glass for my degree show) , both of which have influenced my career.

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