I wasn’t the kind of kid who picked up a camera at the age of six & never looked back. I actually preferred drawing to photography when I was growing up, & owned messy boxes of charcoal and soft pastel sticks. Then as a teenager, I all but abandoned my sketchbooks for music.
My father used to be a keen photographer, & I remember being fascinated by his rangefinder camera – the dials on the manual light-meter, the blue flash bulbs, the worn, dark brown leather camera case. I never tired of looking through his colour slides that we would project onto a small screen set up in the living room. Relatively recently I discovered that my paternal grandmother, Doris Galloway, was a portrait photographer in Gateshead in the 1920’s. Her father, Hubert Errington Galloway, was also a photographer, & had his own studio. So I like to think that there’s some photography in the blood.
My passion for photography grew as I started to travel in my early twenties. Later, I began to consider photography in the context of performance, drawing on my experience of working closely with artists as a producer & manager – observing artists on & off stage, rehearsing, performing, relaxing. I love to immerse myself in a project over a period of time & to reveal new visual narratives. I’m interested in exploring movement, texture & spontaneity in my images & prefer to work with the available light – outdoors or indoors – allowing the light conditions to contribute to the atmosphere of the picture.
I’m based in London, but since Autumn 2009 I have made extensive trips to Mali, Burkina Faso, Senegal, Morocco & India, where I have worked on a range of artistic & documentary assignments, as well on personal projects. Two of my recent projects were created in Mali – a series featuring the Malian National Swimming Team, who I photographed on location in the dry Olympic-sized swimming pool in Bamako, & Le Récit intime de Fanta Kaba, which is a collaboration with the Bamako-based Haïtian choreographer Kettly Noël & the British costume designer Sahar Freemantle. Projects and assignments over the last couple of years have included photographing mountains & monasteries in Ladakh (India), a festival of music & nomadic culture in the Sahara Desert (Morocco), an 8,000 km train journey around India, on tour in the UK with the Kinshasa Symphony Orchestra (from the DRC), Theyyam ritual performances in Kerala, the Sibiu International Theatre Festival in Romania, 12 international contemporary circus companies at Circus Hub in Edinburgh and a production at the Arcola Theatre in East London.
With thanks to Saaku / Jagriti Yatra for this image.