Evie is an actor and extra and recently got in touch for me to take some updated headshots of her. She is a member of the Regional Young Actors Ensemble and was shortlisted for the Vault New Writers Award ’18. To find out more about Evie’s talents visit her Starnow page. Certainly a talented star on the rise!
I was recently commissioned by Menai to take some formal headshots to be used for professional profile images. Menai is the CEO of The Pituitary Foundation that provides support and information for people affected by pituitary gland conditions. The organisations also campaigns on behalf of sufferers ensuring they have a voice. She is also a ACEVO trustee which is a network for charity and social enterprise leaders. To find out more about the foundation Menai can be reached via Linkedin.
First World War ‘Steel Remembered’ showcases the work of a 2 year community project by Linc-Cymru Housing Association, funded by HLF Wales. It has involved researching the lives of men who are listed on the Orb Steel Works First World War Memorial, the role of the works during that time and a look at those who returned. The event began with a talk from the organiser Suzy Bowers. Three schools were involved and the children read the names of the fallen throughout the event. There was a mixture of choir music and songs such as ‘A Long Way to Tipperary’ and ‘Pack up your troubles’ as the audience of 400 strong (official number) sang along – some teary eyed. The display boards told the stories of the men who did not return, and seeing their faces on the wall as a collective really brought home the sacrifices that were made.
I have photographed events in the Senedd many times and this was the busiest I have seen it. There were both ITV and the BBC camera crew present, who both interviewed the family who have been reunited as a result of the project. Staff from the Firing Line Museum were dressed as soldiers and nurses of the era and brought an array of unique artefacts to share their knowledge with the many interested participants both young and old. Nigel Clubb from the Heritage Lottery Fund said a few words about the success of the project and Kirsty Williams AM, the cabinet secretary for education, gave details of funding for schools to commemorate WWI.
It was a wonderful and poignant event and it was a pleasure to both photograph and be part of it.
There is nothing more festive than a carol concert in one of the oldest Churches in Cardiff. Kidney Wales’s annual festive concert featured an array of musical talent. Performing on the evening we have the incredible soloist Al Lewis, one of Wales’ leading choirs Cor Caerdydd, The pupils of Ysgol Berllan Deg & The Performance Centre. The place was packed to the rafters for the free event. Professor Roy J. Thomas gave a very poignant speech reflecting on the spirit of Christmas and the work of Kidney Wales. It is an incredible organisation and was so supportive of my cousin Katy and my Auntie Jill, as they went through a live kidney transplant last year. I am honoured to be asked to photograph their events, which are always so inspiring. For more information on the work they do and to get involved in fundraising go to their website.
I was asked by the Chwarae Teg to come along and photograph an awards ceremony recently. The organisation’s fundamental aim is to “build a Wales where women achieve and prosper.” It was an inspiring event with a talk from one of The Principality’s branch manager Harriet Lewis.
On this particular occasion, participants were being awarded an Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) certificate following an accredited programme. As one of the few female event photographers, I know what it’s like to work in a predominately male occupation, however things are changing. It is organisations such as this, and the current women’s movement, that will form and shape more equal opportunities for women in future.
I was lucky enough to be re-commissioned to photograph the annual Women’s Institute White Ribbon 2017 campaign at the Senedd in Cardiff Bay. This is the third year I have covered the event and it is incredibly thought provoking. However this year, the atmosphere was considerably changed by the sad news that active supporter of the campaign Carl Sargeant AM had taken his life the week before. There was a sombre mood at the event and organisers ensured that he was mentioned as an ambassador to end domestic violence. I had met him on the previous occasions I photographed the event, and he was always an active AM, talking to participants and activists and signing the pledge to not condone or be complicit to any violence against women.
The event started with a panel discussion during the afternoon followed by guest and speakers plus a candlelit vigil in the evening. The weather was not kind this year. The horizontal rain and change in temperature played havoc with my poor camera, if it could talk I’m sure it would have said, “what are you doing out here, take me back in the warm and dry!” The speakers were incredibly brave telling stories of personal experiences and the effect the murder of a sister had on the wider family. As awful as domestic violence is to hear about, it is only by listening and being active to prevent, report and not condone it, will women and male victims, have the courage to come forward and free themselves of appalling treatment. To find out more about this campaign go to the Women’s Institute ‘Not in My Name’ page.
I was commissioned by TUC Wales to document a recent Equality Briefing of speakers and subsequent workshops. The event was held at the The Conference Centre in Nantgarw, a venue I had not photographed in before. As always, my first priority was to review the itinerary and assess the lighting problems I will face, always an issue and a big priority in event photography. Thankfully the main room had dual aspect windows so a big sigh of relief there! Sometimes at events I find the information from the speakers to be thoroughly thought provoking and it was the case here. The research that has gone into providing evidence of the impact of equality across situations such as disability, refugees, women and other important topics was very interesting (I did take pictures too, honest)! This excellent video which was played during the day highlights stories from individuals and their workplace isues. I am grateful to be asked to document these events and I take so much away from them, I genuinely love my job for the extra experiences and people it brings.
I was delighted to be asked by Kidney Wales to come along and photograph an Afternoon Tea fundraising event. The charity have teamed up with Welsh tea manufacturer Glengettie in an attempt to hold these parties across the country. To find out more please go to their website and order a fundraising pack, with everything you need to get started – Order Your Kidney Wales Afternoon Tea Pack.
The charity do an amazing job and I have a personal connection since my aunt donated one of her kidney’s to my cousin last year. I have seen at first hand the amazing work they do so if you are looking to get involved this is a great opportunity to raise money and eat lots of cake … what could be better!
I was invited to capture a portrait of Catherine recently, to celebrate her First Holy Communion. As it was a few weeks after the official service, the shoot was taken at home. This was a first for me and it was enlightening to learn about the significance and importance of this stage of life within the Catholic Church. I decided to shoot against a blank wall using a continuous studio light with a softbox and also some on camera speedlight with a flash bender to make sure I get some catchlight in her eyes. We then decided to move to the garden for less formal portraits to capture her personality a bit more. Needless to say we had lots of fun and at one stage Catherine became the photographer capturing fantastic candid images of her Mum and sister, I’d better watch out in a few years!
WI White Ribbon Campaign Launch at the Senedd, Cardiff
I recently photographed the launch of the NFWI-Wales’s involvement in the White Ribbon campaign to raise awareness to end domestic violence and sexual assault. The launch on 22 November 2016 included emotional speeches by victims of domestic violence, AM’s and WI representatives in the Senedd in the afternoon. Sponsor Joyce Watson AM, lead the candlelight vigil that evening with further pledges and victim stories heard on the steps of the Senedd.
As I photographed the previous years inaugural event, it was a pleasure to witness so many more faces in the crowd, a fact I hope will continue next year. Many WI members had arrived from miles away by coach to pledge their support. It was good to listen to pledges of support from AM’s across all political parties without bringing their individual political stance to the equation. It was most humbling to hear victim stories, but heartening to watch how strong these women have become as they stood on the steps of the Welsh Government building. Having the courage to stand up and tell their stories to a sea of strangers, all in the name of bringing awareness to the campaign, will hopefully be a catalyst for change.
Fact – Every third day in the UK a woman is murdered by a (ex)partner.