Monday, 15 May 2017

OVER THE HILL: A PHOTOGRAPHIC JOURNEY

OVER THE HILL by Roberto Foddai

          
‘Alright boys, this is it, over the hill’ is the intro of the song “Bring on Lucie” by John Lennon and, although the phrase ‘over the hill’ has somewhat negative connotations, it is announced on the record in a very positive way by Lennon who goes on to sing ‘Do it, do it, do it, do it now!’ and so, for me, the title of this exhibition is optimistic despite the double meaning.

In May 2007, I answered an advertisement in Time Out from Graeme Montgomery, whom I know now to be an extremely talented professional photographer. He was compiling a book of nudes and wanted to photograph the first 100 people to answer the advert so I thought ‘why not?’ and went along and found that I was number one! Strangely enough, two other photographers advertised in the following two issues of Time Out, this time for people to pose for portraits, and they both photographed me subsequently. That was that for a while until, in February 2008, I answered an advert in our local newspaper from a student, Daisy Lang, who wanted to photograph people with illnesses for her final year’s project. Subsequently, I discovered that there were many photographers advertising on the Internet for models for particular projects. I wrote an email to the first photographer explaining that I was 57 and had Parkinson’s Disease and that ‘I wanted to continue on my path of being photographed by different people during the course of my illness’. Suddenly, as I wrote those words, I realised that I had my own project.

Since then, over 400 different photographers have photographed and filmed me and it has been incredibly interesting and exciting as I have seen the project develop day by day. I have met many wonderful, skilful people many of whom, normally, I would never have met let alone spent several hours with them.

It has been a fascinating journey. I have always loved photography but never had the patience or skill to practice it successfully. However, being a model has enabled me to collaborate with brilliant practitioners of the art and to be part of the artistic photographic process.

I decided on "Over the Hill" as the title of the project in January 2009 but I had not discussed this with anyone until I met Roberto Foddai a few weeks later to talk about his ideas for our shoot. He produced two pieces of headgear he wanted me to wear and said that one of them had some wording on it which he felt was somewhat ironic. He turned it over and on the front were the words  – ‘Over the Hill’.
Free the people, now.
Do it, do it, do it, do it now.

Tim Andrews


16 comments:

  1. Tim discovered this blog today and I must say I find it brave you being photographed that is. I suffer from MS and whilst I put the occasional shot of me up on my blog I will have to consider how I would feel about doing it for others rather than family.How do you feel about it? I am trying to seperate the man from the disease and failing at the moment, or maybe I AM OVER THE TOP. Don Wood

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    1. Don, l must have somehow overlooked your comment on my blog FOUR YEARS AGO!! I am so sorry. How are you now? My email is tjra1951@gmail.com if you would like amore private conversation. Tim

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  2. Dear Tim

    My husband, artist Zak Benjamin www.zakbenjamin.com was diagnosed with Parkinson's in 1996, when he was 44 years old. The implantation of a Deep Brain Stimulator in 2008 has given him back the use of his hands, but he's pretty much on his last legs, as the device does not help for loss of balance. It also does not help for loss of speech - so he's fast retreating into silence.

    I am so impressed with and moved by your life-affirming project. Thank you!

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  3. Hello from Bulgaria!
    I have come upon this site from Maja Daniels's site and
    ever since I have read the story of Over the hill, and saw her contribution, a big part of me just knew what I wanted to do.
    If there is a way (I am a poor student) that I would have the possibility to contribute to your project, I will be more than happy to.

    If you by any chance have interest of my previous work:

    www.angelshterev.blogspot.com
    or for the urefined work
    www.flickr.com/gstance

    thank you and all the best!

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  4. Hey Tim! My name is Cameron Von St. James and I had a quick question for you! I was wondering if you could email me at your earliest convenience at cvonstjames AT gmail DOT com :-) I greatly appreciate your time!!

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  5. A fantastic project that Ive been watching unravel.

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  6. Hi Tim,

    I'm Megan, editor of TheMighty.com, where we share and tell stories about people facing disease, disability and disorder. I just recently came across this project, and we love it. We'd like to feature you on The Mighty if you're interested. You can reach me at megan@themighty.com if you are. Thanks!

    Megan

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    1. Not sure we ever did do anything together but willing to now if you like.

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  7. Tim, your project is fascinating, and I applaud the way you've risen to the challenge of Parkinson's, but I have a question: has anyone ever suggested that gluten could be playing a role in your condition and it's symptoms? I've done a fair amount of research on gluten, and it can, indeed, affect the brain and neurological system. Here's a quick piece on gluten's possible role in Parkinson's. Please take a look. Thank you. http://www.celiac.com/blogs/128/Is-there-a-link-between-Parkinsons-Disease-and-Gluten-IntoleranceCeliac-Disease.html

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  8. This blog photography projects is too good that shares useful and meaningful content. It is appreciative post.


    photography projects

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  9. Hello Tim, I tried several times to respond to your message, but it is not delivered coming back as permanent failure. Please contact me with a valid email, so we talk about your interesting project. Thanks a lot. Alessandro Bavari - info@alessandrobavari.com - www.alessandrobavari.com

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  11. Dear Tim

    I hope you are well. I am writing to let you know that the artwork, you have created with Jeronimo Sanz few years ago, has been used as a cover for a scientific book I have edited with my colleague.

    http://www.frontiersin.org/books/Sound_Music_and_Movement_in_Parkinsons_Disease/1083

    You can download it as a pdf or e-pub, and I hope that some articles published within you might find interesting (I recommend especially the opinion paper by Dr David Marchant - the last piece, as other things might be incomprehensible due to scientific jargon). I have been in awe of your work in the Over the Hill project. It is absolutely superb and I admire you.

    I am a movement neuroscient myself, currently based in France, and I specialise in movement rehabilitation. Actually I work in a different field for the time being, with healthy adults, but I look forward to going back to clinical work with my next university position. So maybe there will be an opportunity to meet one day, provided I will be based in UK again :)

    If you have any questions please do let me know. I hope you do not mind Jeronimo has granted permission to use photo of you for the cover.

    Kind regards
    Dr. Marta Bienkiewicz ( I have sent you an email as well from my private gmail account - otherwise you can contact me on my work email marta.bienkiewicz@univ-amu.fr

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  13. Dear Tim

    My name is Jun, an oversea student who is studying the documentary film in London now.Last month, I made a documentary film about Tina Rowe who ever took photos for you.From her work, I knew about your story and your project, then I tried to find you.

    I think you are an inspirational and creative man,I am attracted by your story ,your project and your life. So I want to consult you that could you be a contributor for my graduation film,please? I want to make a film about your life.If you give me the permission, we could discuss together about the film.

    My English is not very well, so if you feel my words are impolite,I apologise for that.

    Please give me a chance,I'm looking forward to your reply.You can contact me via my e-mail: jkally1993@outlook.com.


    Sincerely,

    Jun

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  14. Glad to see you posted again...was concerned as I had seen none over the last several weeks. Glad all is well...

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