Tag Archives: reportage

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:

I also had to shoot a rather large outdoor log burner and the client wanted both studio and location shots, so I had to muscle it single handedly in to my house during the first lockdown. Once I had got it in it was then a case of moving around it rather than moving it around as it weighed 75Kgs, but the client was delighted with the final pictures and I was pleased to get it back out of my house without giving myself a hernia.

The CALBQ studio shot. Photo by Douglas Kurn
The CALBQ shot in my home studio or dining room as Mrs Doug likes to call it!
The CALBQ studio shot. Photo by Douglas Kurn
Photo by Douglas Kurn

Luckily the weather was fantastic for the outdoor shots that I took in my garden and I certainly wasn’t in need of any additional heat from the log burner but I had the power of retouching to help me out with the flames.

A behind the scenes shot in the garden.
Photographing the CALBQ on location in my back garden.
The final CALBQ location product shot.
The final image with added flames.

In between lockdowns I was also asked by Halo Medical to attend their factory in Northants as they have been investing heavily in new technology which they wanted to promote. I had previously been to the factory to create some portraits of the craftsmen who hand made some of the shoes, as well as some reportage shots of them at work which they had made into large canvas prints. It was lovely to see the prints still hanging in their reception area and looking great.

This time though things were a little different: I got zapped by a temperature sensor, had to sign a form to say I hadn’t been to any at risk places, had to use hand sanitiser and wear a face mask to enter the building. I’ve also had to resort to wearing my contact lenses on jobs now as masks make it tricky to see.

Douglas Kurn with steamed up glasses
Not great for a photographer!

There were some really interesting machines doing quite intricate stuff, and it was great to see the way the old hand crafting and the new technology worked together.

Halo Medical Technology. Photo by Douglas Kurn
Halo Medical Technology. Photo by Douglas Kurn
Halo Medical Technology. Photo by Douglas Kurn
Halo Medical Technology. Photo by Douglas Kurn
Halo Medical Technology. Photo by Douglas Kurn
Halo Medical Technology. Photo by Douglas Kurn
Halo Medical Technology. Photo by Douglas Kurn
Halo Medical Technology. Photo by Douglas Kurn

If living in lockdown and with the coronavirus pandemic has taught me anything (apart from you can open a screw top bottle with a foil cutter) it is that we need to be resourceful and just get on with it in any way we can.

Oh, and according to Mrs Doug, my home studio is a dining room NOT a permanent feature…

:DK

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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On A Knife’s Edge

Or more accurately a knife’s edge on a river’s edge. Meet Tim who hand makes knives from reclaimed steel in his workshop on Lots Ait on the river Thames in Brentford. Tim’s a trained chef, and like all chefs he has a fascination with knives, but he’s taken it a step further and decided to make them himself.

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