“At least he knew some amazing people!” If my entire life should turn out to have been for naught, this epitaph would nonetheless be valid.
I have decided to postpone doing a blog on all the writers and musicians I know for fear of leaving some of the many out, and thereby causing offence. It’s a bit more manageable when it comes to photographers and artists, so here goes (in alphabetical order of surnames)…
I have known Debby for many years, having met her when I lived in Aberdeen. It’s been a joy to see her develop. She tells me her latest semi-experimental bas relief work sold immediately. She’s on the way up!
Search “silk” on the linked page to find an example of Shona’s glorious silk paintings, many of which have been inspired by the beautiful little village of Pennan (where much of Local Hero was filmed). Currently formally studying art (after many years during which she had no difficulty finding a market for her work!), it’ll be fascinating to see how her range and style are affected by her training. Shona is also a keen amateur musician, playing the fiddle and the clarsach.
Like many of the people listed here, Paula is multi-talented. A fashion stylist and illustrator, Paula is also a keen hill-walker, an activity one doesn’t necessarily associate with high fashion! I met Paula in Manchester many years ago, being introduced by Christoph of Shaw & Shaw (see below). Adept at switching between trainers, high heels and hiking boots, Paula is equally at home in the fashion hotspots of London and New York, in Manchester’s hip Northern Quarter, and yomping the fells in the Peak District.
Where do I start with Vroni? A Bavarian who has made her home in Edinburgh, Vroni is a photographer, a piano player and accordionist (currently doing a masters in composition at the University of Edinburgh) and an all-round entertainer. My official photographer, her fee is 1% of my royalties of my next book, in perpetuity!
Morag is the only photographer listed here who could be called a wildlife photographer, but she is more accurately described as a documentary photographer. Like Debby and Shona, I met Morag in Aberdeen many years ago, and it’s been amazing to watch her career develop. Like her namesake (though not a relative, apparently) her time in Zambia was formative, but I think some of her most powerful shots are those of deprived communities in Scotland.
One of the many talented people I met in Manchester, Aidan specialises in architectural and landscape photography, but is not limited to it. A vast archive of his material can be found on his site. Have fun!
Shaw is the creative and imaginative one, whereas Shaw is more practical and down-to-earth (a joke adapted from Ian MacPherson‘s reference to Faber and Faber in Deep Probings). Together they are unbeatable! Equally at home with fashion, advertising and architecture, Jo and Christoph’s quirky side can be seen in the photographs they took to illustrate this hilarious book, and here‘s the Amazon link. Old friends of mine from Manchester days, at one point we lived in the same building in West Didsbury. I met Christoph through the Manchester School of Samba.
I’ve only known Laurence a short time but am very impressed by the range and quality of his work, some of it extremely witty and all of it very slick! Have a look at his site and you’ll see what I mean.
What’s the point of telling you about all these people?
(a) I get a kick out of introducing people to each other. I like helping people. If you are looking for a top-notch photographer, or want to buy some quality work by up-and-coming artists, then I shall have helped both you and them.
(b) As someone who helps people with their biographies I think it’s important for me to give you an idea of the range of people I know. When it comes to bringing a story to life, such personal contacts, with their individual skills, knowledge and own sets of contacts, are an invaluable resource. (But, friends, please don’t think I view you primarily as “a resource”!)