Tag Archives: reportage

Are your photos stoppers?

A red octagonal STOP sign against a blue sky used to illustrate a post on "stoppers". Photo by Douglas Kurn
A stop sign. Photo by Douglas Kurn

What do I mean by stoppers? It is a term that the fashion editor of Vogue magazine Phyllis Posnick attributed to former Vogue art director Alexander Liberman, that meant an image had the power to make readers stop at a page and absorb the content. Posnick even used Stoppers as the title of her book of photographs that she created at Vogue with some of the worlds best photographers and fashion photographers of their time.

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Working Through Lockdown

Although I have continued to work throughout the whole coronavirus pandemic (whilst complying with government guidelines), a lot of my clients have been working from home so shooting on location with them has been tricky. Luckily I have been able to use my home and garden to help out as I previously mentioned.

For that shoot I had to photograph a shoe, comp the shoe on to a stock shot of a leg and then repeat for the dorsi flexed or plantar flexed stages of taking a step during walking – can you tell I don’t know what I’m talking about? Luckily I had some experts from my client on hand to advise!

The image was for the front cover of the latest Halo Medical catalogue, which looks like this thanks to the good folk at Remember Creative:

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The M25 Motor Wey

I’m often asked where I find my subjects for some of my personal portraits; the answer is simple – if I see someone interesting I go up and ask them! Take Chas for instance; I have regularly cycled past his long boat on the Wey Navigation just underneath the M25 motorway bridge, and often thought he would probably make a great subject, but the problem was his boat was on the other side of the canal so it was difficult to make contact with him.

Chas’ boat moored on the Wey Navigation under the M25.

Icons Of Rock

I’ll be honest I’ve never really understood why someone would want to dress up and pretend to be someone else so when a (last minute) opportunity to photograph the inaugural Icons Of Rock festival in Surrey presented itself I jumped at the chance to find out. The festival was a line up of Tribute Acts to famous musicians; Limehouse Lizzy (Thin Lizzy), Michael (Jackson) starring Ben, Absolute Bowie, The Illegal Eagles, Live/Wire (AC/DC) and Killer Queen.

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Festival Folk

I’m a music lover and an avid people watcher, and with the festival season well and truly upon us (does it actually ever end?) I was reminded that I took some time out last year at the BST Festival in Hyde Park, where we’d gone to watch primarily The Cure, and grabbed some candid shots of the festival goers.

The BST Festival at Hyde Park, 2018, featuring The Cure, Interpol, Editors, Ride, Goldfrapp and Slow Dive.
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Split The Difference

How brave are you? Would you recommend that someone attend an anger management course? What if that someone was holding an axe? That’s what a former boss suggested to my latest subject Clay – before he left and set up his own business – as a tree surgeon, hence the axe. His leaving was more to do with paperwork and the safety ‘elf than anger management though.

Despite how that sounds Clay is a remarkably mild mannered man and a bell ringer at the local church in his spare time. He also lives in this beautiful old listed cottage in the heart of Surrey.

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George & The Dancers

How do you celebrate St George’s Day? The Ewell St Mary’s Morris Men don their outfits and head up to the City Of London to entertain all and sundry, and this year I followed them around for the day whilst they danced, sang, shook their bells and quaffed ale! What could be more English than grown men wearing daft hats and having a thoroughly good time in the midst of the UK’s major finance and business centre? There were crowds, selfies in abundance, as well as confused and bemused tourists, and the odd, far too self important, grumpy businessman.

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Max A Hatter

It’s amazing what you find on little islands. I met Max A Hatter on Johnson’s Island in West London; he makes hats in a very small studio, at the top of a spiral staircase (I seem to be sending a lot of time in small rooms at the top of spiral staircases!) Max was introduced to me by Tim at Clement Knives, who I photographed on a nearby island making chef’s knives.

Max’s hats are really quite unique; based on a bowler style but with influences from Sapeurs and Yardies, and with a Turbanesque – a detachable padding or turban, which is used for position and comfort. 

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PRINTAGRAM ISSUE 2

It’s been a while coming but the first issue of my magazine Printagram has been so well received that I just had to make a second issue. If you not seen it before Printagram is a not so instant version of some of my images, coupled with some of my musings – which if I’m honest have mostly been taken from my blog. 

This issue consists of current personal work, commissions, historical stuff and something even shot on very old and very outdated film. Intrigued? Of course you are, so grab a copy of the PDF here. It’s over 30 pages of stuff so you might want to start the download and then go and put the kettle on to accompany your read!

It’s best viewed as a double page PDF which if you are on a Mac using Preview you do like this:

If you missed the first edition of Printagram you can download a copy here. I hope you enjoy it and please let me know what you think.

Now must get to work on creating more for the next issue…

Life In A Dark Shed

I’ve often wandered past a tin shed behind some gates, and wondered what was inside. One day I went inside and met Trevor, who has worked there since the age of 14. His Father worked there too, up until 4 weeks before he passed away at the age of 94. With all the welding, drilling and cutting that goes on there is a lot of dust everywhere but Trevor says he is tidying it up. Whilst I was there we came across a letter from 1984, although Trevor said that he had found one from the 70’s recently!

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