Saturday, 15 September 2012


BOXING by Tim Andrews

This is another self portrait which sums up how I'm feeling about this bloody disease at the moment. I just couldn't sleep last night because I was shaking, I don't know why. I came down and chatted to Jane who was still up but I felt very emotional. She made us both a Horlicks.I did a shoot on Sunday where I danced for the photographer and I think I overdid it because my hip and knee on my right side were agony about 24 hours later and now, after 4 days, it still hurts but not quite so much. So that hasn't helped.

Other than that, I feel like I am hurtling towards the end and, every so often, I stumble and roll forwards down the hill but, occasionally, I am able to stand up and, for a time, travel at my own pace but the illness is relentless and keeps pushing me along faster and faster and yet, I have all these things that I want to do. 
I know that this is not the world's best photograph and in no way am I anywhere near as good as the great photographers who have shot me but I do enjoy self portraiture - it is somehow very comforting. I am not afraid of self discovery as I want to find as many answers about myself as I can before I go. 

I am going to stop now and edit yet another film I have made - this is the latest


Saturday, 8 September 2012

THERE WAS A TIME by Katerina Iacovides

    THERE WAS A TIME by Katerina Iacovides

I came across Katerina's work during yet another trawl through the photographs on Flickr and I was very impressed by how bizarre and exciting they were so I wrote to her straightaway and received an answer almost by return in which she asked if there was any particular style of her work that I liked. She also explained that she would like to create something for me that moved in a different direction from previous images in my project - something that would inspire both of us. I love it when this happens ie when the photographer starts thinking immediately what he or she will do with me. I find it very moving somehow. She also said that she would like to meet me beforehand as she liked to get a feeling for a person before jumping straight into creating a portrait so we arranged to meet at Paddington Station where we discussed each other's work and ideas began to take shape. 

Katerina also made it clear that she had a tendency to improvise so it was no surprise to me that the shoot encompassed a lot that we hadn't previously discussed. On the day, we did some shots inside the house and then outside using an old ornate picture frame and we ended up going by bus to Devil's Dyke on the outskirts of Brighton where we shot some cowboy pictures. It was a beautiful day and Katerina was a very interesting person to talk to and an extremely pleasant companion so it was all jolly good fun. Gosh, I am such a lucky guy to have days like these.

Well, afterwards I received some really quite wonderful images from Katerina. The first one was with the frame and I would have been very happy with just that but then she sent the cowboy shots from Devil's Dyke which I adored and then finally the Digital Art images which were glorious. 

And yet something kept pulling me back to one of the cowboy photos. I think it was the connection with my childhood love of westerns plus the fact that we had such a lovely time doing them together. So I plumped for this one - it has an elegiac feel to it and although I loved the tones of the colour shots, the black and white suggests a more historical feel even though the western films I saw in my youth were generally made in colour. Katerina was happy with the choice too. She managed, very subtly, to draw out of me elements of my past ie the cowboy but also present it in a very romantic and cinematic way which is really what I'm all about. Romance and the Movies - that'll do me!

Katerina - a delightful woman and a very creative photographer.


Thursday, 6 September 2012


CONGRATULATIONS to both Alma Haser and Spencer Murphy (both of whom have photographed me) for being chosen for the final shortlist for the Taylor Wessing Prize this year.

Alma Haser: The Ventriloquist © Alma Haser

Alma is a brilliant young photographer whose work fully justifies her selection as a finalist. She is extremely hard working, is not afraid to try out new ideas and experiment with different cameras, film and concepts. She is also extremely charming and a joy to work with.

Spencer Murphy: Mark Rylance © Spencer Murphy

As for Spencer, well what can I say? He consistently produces stunning portraits of which his photograph of Mark Rylance must be one of his very best. He is also a very nice bloke.

Alma's photograph of me is here and Spencer's portrait is there.

I am so thrilled for both of them.

Saturday, 1 September 2012

"菰野とバルーンと裸" ("Naked with Kimono and Balloon") by Poppy French

"菰野とバルーンと裸" ("Naked with Kimono and Balloon")  by Poppy French

Bloody Hell - this was fun! 

Poppy became a follower on my Blog and I looked her up on the internet and discovered that she was a very good photographer so I wrote to her and she answered very quickly saying yes to my request that she photograph me. I met her in Haslemere (where incidentally, dear readers, I started my career as a fully qualified solicitor after completing my training in Chichester) and we got on very well and talked about her grandparents' house as a location for the shoot and some other ideas. Initially, she mentioned that, quite often, she liked to photograph people (and herself) as fine art paintings, creating a small scene out of bits and pieces and then doing a bit of Photoshop. Then she suggested that it would be great if I could think of a favourite painting or someone in History whom I have aspired to be. We talked a bit about this but in the end, it got put to one side. We corresponded over quite some time during which she told me that she was doing a lot with her friend, James Barnett, a keen set designer and they would both like to be involved in the shoot and that they had quite a lot of set pieces which they were quite keen to use.

And on to the shoot itself which took place in and around James' parents house in Godalming. In fact, another legal connection - a solicitor with whom I had many, many dealings over 29 years in both Haslemere and Grayshott, lived in the same road. This was the man who came to our house in Milford once, to collect his daughter (a school friend of my own daughter) and, as he left, looked at the brass door knocker on our front door and said, "You know what you need to do with that Tim? Work on it with some wire wool" Bloody nerve! And then a few years ago after l had retired I met him in Waitrose in Godalming and said, "Hello, David, How are you?" and he said "I'm sorry and who are you?" Maybe he's a bit senile now or maybe it's because he never looks you in the eye. Anyway, I digress - back to this shoot.......

A few days before the shoot, I asked Poppy what she wanted me to wear. She asked for a number of jackets and an assortment of T shirts, ordinary shirts, trousers and shoes but I really needn't have bothered because I arrived at about 12 noon, stripped off and put on the kimono but apart from that, I was starkers for the rest of the day part from the odd see-through cape, a balloon and a ruff. James was a real hoot and he and Poppy are real soul mates and I tuned in to their way of doing things right from the start. We started off with the kimono, as I said, in a sort of Japanese garden area but eventually this was discarded and I posed naked in other areas of the garden before we strolled off to a nearby field with a helium filled balloon to play with. More nude shots but some clothed too. James was helping the direction of the shoot but also filmed part of it. 

And all the while, we laughed and chatted and chatted and laughed and then laughed some more. We were like little kids meeting up for a day when we could play whatever games we liked. It was such a relaxing day with many little highlights and just great, great fun. I chose this clothed shot as Poppy's contribution to my project. Basically, it is such a good photograph - the colour, the directness, the questions without answers. The whole experience was wonderfully bizarre and bizarrely weird in a very innocent, unashamed way. The sort of day that one wants to repeat very often. And we finished in time for "Doctor Who".

Thank you Poppy and James - for EVERYthing! Here's to the next time. 

Poppy and James

TWITTER: @poppyfrench