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Usually faces have been a part of my pictures, now they are the main event.
I started out taking pictures of architecture, would even wait until people moved out of shot. This was a long time ago, maybe I got a little bored with bricks and mortar, maybe I needed actors for my stage of beautiful buildings but people started to appear and it started a fascination that grew slowly into a love of portraiture.
Inspired by: this project started during the first lock down when a group of photographers couldn’t decide on a project to show for our next Zoom meeting and came up with the idea of selfies. Not being terribly keen on the idea of seeing myself on a screen I decided to hide behind another’s persona, in this case Dame Edith Sitwell and all her rings.
Taking inspiration from paintings and photographs isn’t new but it’s been hugely enjoyable, I hope you enjoy looking at them.
One painting that has always been a favourite is Grant Wood’s American Gothic, the couples’ connection and their strength shines out, Al and Kitty show that connection and that strength.Sometimes you recognise a mannerism in a portrait that instantly reminds you of a friend. Dame Laura Knight's portrait of Ethel Bartlett an opera singer held her hands in exactly the way  Lorna doesBrian Griffin, a truly inspirational portrait photographer showed me that you don't need to show the face for a portrait to be instantly recognisable.I saw this photograph a couple of months ago and instantly thought of the beautiful bike that Paul had shown me in February, he was given a 1970's frame and has restored it to its former glorySometimes a picture stays with you, this is the case with the Vermeer portrait of the Girl with the Pearl Earring. When I met Jatinder he was rocking some fabulous pearl earrings,  connection madeI am fascinated by hands, they way they define people, for some they are used as a second language. Cecil Beaton's picture of Dame Edith Sitwell, those hands, those rings they dominate the portrait,.During the first lockdown one of the many things that were denied us were haircuts, Peter's grew and grew and he took on a resemblance to Willie Nelson.  It was a natural pose