River Waveney Reed Cutter

Wally Mason | Reed Cutter

Throughout the past few years I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and photographing so many incredible people.
I’ve been lucky enough to spend a fair amount of time with two inspirational local reed cutters.

This portrait is from my recent series and features Wally.
A charming person who can often be found on the banks of the River Waveney, plying his trade.
Every bit the ‘character’ you would imagine. I’ve been fortunate to spend hours with Wally, documenting him, his skill and listening to his stories.
I shot this portrait around March 2019.

Back in 2005 using my Hasselblad, I shot a series of images with Eric Edwards (RIP)
learning a lot about Norfolk, the Broads and “how things worked on the river” It was a thrilling time to spend with a man I really admired. I feel privileged to have documented two terrific people and their way of life (i’ll be sharing some of the images of Eric next week)

#Broads #Norfolk #Norfolkbroads #nationalpark #portrait #reedcutter #marshmen #riverwaveney

Portrait of LTFC Groundsman

From the Portrait Series

David is every bit a Lowestoft man. He used to work in one of the towns key industries, spending days and nights out on the North Sea on one of the many fishing trawlers. which frequented this stretch of coast. Twenty plus years ago, all that changed. He was approached by the club chairman to become the groundsman.
Joining the ground keeping course at Ipswich Town, David learnt from the best in the business, Alan Fergusson, who, incidentally is now the head grounds man for St Georges park – the home of the England International team. Pretty good pedigree to learn from.

David retired from the club last year, but can still be seen on match days – a real character of non league football.

Dylan

Dylan posed for a portrait last year as part of my portrait series in Norfolk & North Suffolk.

A scene which is quintessentially British.
Donkeys first arrived on the beaches around the UK for leisure rides during Victorian times, becoming a popular holiday pastime. Traditionally, they were animals which had been working on the cockle trade and were then used for leisure when demand increased from day-trippers.

Several beaches around England still have donkey rides, Great Yarmouth being one of them!

#portrait #norfolk #greatyarmouth #donkeys

Ronnie the Rigger

Meet Ronnie the Rigger.

From the series Portrait. 2019

“My specialism is yacht rigging. No one these days wants to know, none of the kids are interested in this. Which is a shame, it’s a real trade and has provided me with a good living.
I was born in Norfolk and lived on the edge of the Broads, raising my two children. I started rigging in the 70’s, up until then I was painting and building the boats.
I guess you could say that I moved to rigging out of necessity. I’ve been all around the Broads, working for many different builders and cruising companies, as well as all over Europe working on yacht rigging.
I’m now officially retired, only doing this as a hobby. Not many people have my knowledge or expertise around here”

#Wroxham #Broads #Broadsnationalpark #Watermillsandmarshes #portrait #Norfolk

Portrait of Eshetu

There have been so many portraits that I have really enjoyed shooting, but this one of dear Eshetu was probably one of my favourites.

First meeting him in 2012, after I had just come back from the Cycle to Rwanda adventure.
The day I took the portrait, we sat, in his apartment, sipping Ethiopian coffee and enjoy sweet potato, while the rain lashed it down. a fabulous morning with a real gentleman.

Dr. Eshetu Wondimagegne NACA Projects Coordinator

“At 18 I studied away from home at a technical college in Ethiopia, I was hesitating at the time, whether I should work to support my family or continue to a degree.
I was advised to continue education and completed the first degree in the mid 1970’s. After working on government farms and becoming supervisors and managers I Came to Norwich in 1989, Got an offer from British Council Technical support from Ethiopia, to study for my PHD.
My Supervisor moved to Norwich and I came, followed him to the city. I was here for around 3 years, it was planned to return to Ethiopia to carry out field research, but sadly it didn’t work out that way. There were big problems in my country around that time, with a change of government. So I remained here.
New people came to power and my programme was changed, completely finished. It was very dangerous. It was not safe for me or my family.
Thankfully, I was allowed to stay in the UK by the British Council, but I had to get a job, of course to support myself. So, the three-plan changed to five years, but I did complete my studies and got a degree in Vital bacteriology.

For nine years I was the chairman of Town & Gown in Norwich, it was a voluntary organisation to bring people together in Norwich. Overseas students with locals, it was fabulous. We had international food, music, dance, it was a great organisation to bring people together in the city. People of a displaced nature appreciated that greatly. We made friends for life.
From this experience I started the Norfolk African Community Association. We had founding members from Rwanda, Kenya, Ethiopia and one guy from Sudan. We started this organisation and it’s still going well to this day. We help people on allotments, educating and bringing people together.
Sadly, my children have never visited me in England. I tried to get them out of the country in the early days, spending a lot of money and time, but that failed, so now we only speak on the phone.”

Big C Cycle Ride

Recently I met up with some of the BigC team at their new site in Norwich, to shoot images promoting the upcoming Norwich 100 ride.
The building, which is underdevelopment, is to become the Cancer Support & Information Centre in the heart of Norwich.
£500,000 needs to be raised to turn a disused building into a bright, modern and comforting centre.

Big C

“This May, we’re asking you to get on your bike for Big C! 🚴‍♀️ 🚴‍♂️

We are delighted to team up with Bike Events for this year’s #Norwich100 event – a highlight in the cycling calendar!

Join us and take on a 100, 60 or 30 mile ride around the beautiful sites of #Norfolk. Starting in Norwich, your journey will take you through the picturesque Norfolk countryside up to the North Norfolk Coast.

This is a great chance to test your endurance, strength and stamina all while helping to raise funds to help local people affected by cancer.

And the funds you raise from this year’s event will go directly to building our new Centre in Norwich!

Our #NearertoHomeAppeal aims to raise £500,000 to turn a disused building on Dereham Road into a bright, comforting and modern Big C Cancer Support and Information Centre for the local community.

But we can only do this with your help and support! “

Iceland Edit

Iceland certainly proved to be a photogenic country. The landscape seemed to change every few moments, with terrific light making the country a photographers playground!

Shooting with my little Fuji X30 – I grabbed some truly memorable frames, as the landscape played out wonderfully in front of me.
Severe snow storms added to the ‘fun’ and sense of adventure – the 4×4 certainly had a good workout… nearly getting snowed in and stuck several times!

This is one of many images that I’ll be uploading. A quick edit on the laptop while waiting for my flight home!

#iceland #landscape #fuji #quickedit

Emma Ratzer – Portrait

From the series Portrait.

Emma Ratzer MBE CEO Access Community Trust

“I have worked for Access Community Trust since 2007, first joining as operations manager, then director of services and now CEO since 2013.
I proudly received an MBE in June 2019 for services to Suffolk.
I left school with very little qualifications, having spent the final 2 years avoiding school at any cost. I now have an MBA and an MA.
The Trust completely re-branded in 2013, moving from St Johns Housing Trust to Access. Introducing and facilitating an organisation wide cultural change, I mentor and coach staff offering an ‘acceleration’ approach to career development. I empower my staff to deliver services that are shaped by the needs of our communities, designing positive experiences that inspire to aspire.
The charitable sector is one that is becoming more and more challenging, with a constant requirement to balance funding cuts and increasing demands, but my drive and passion is sparked by a reality that tells me our people view their future within the confines of poverty of hope, not just poverty of income.
Changing our own workplace environment by employing 16 to 18 year olds has been one such response. Sams Coffee House in Lowestoft is our flagship social enterprise project which hosts a variety of volunteering and apprenticeship opportunities, events such as a language café, youth clubs and peer support groups for people in recovery. Our apprentices are taken directly from the community in which we are based, many of whom live with us, all of them accessing our support services. My organisation is relentlessly positive and resilient, using our influence to power change and I am incredibly honored to lead the charge”

#Access #Accesscommunity #Lowestoft #Suffolk #Portrait

The Chairman

Portrait.
The Social photographic project, kindly supported by the Water, Mills & Marshes project is about capturing emotive photographs of people living in Norfolk & North Suffolk is continuing throughout the next two/three years.

Over the coming weeks and months I will be showcasing some of the work to date, which was featured in the 2019 exhibition at Skippings Gallery in Great Yarmouth.

This Portrait is of Norman – The Chairman

I first started cycling when I worked in Norwich. I would usually get a lift, but at some point that fell through, so I started riding my bike to work – It was 1976, a really hot summer, I rode twice a week to work on an Austro-Daimler Puch
For some reason I stopped riding, I think I found out what beer was for! Around 4 years later I picked it up again, joining Great Yarmouth Cycling Club in 1987. A friend suggested I joined and I became part of the fabric GYCC. I joined to go racing, starting with 10mile Time Trials and it just continued, I guess you could say I became hooked. I started to ramp it up, doing serious winter training.
I was no superstar, at district level I was ok and could certainly hold my own. In the early 1990’s I took a lot of club records, a couple of which are still held to this day – not bad going considering the conditions and lack of aero technology.
I became Chairman of the club around 1991, I was young enough and old enough to take it on and I’ve been chairman ever since. The club has done well. At the moment we have over 150 members, which is terrific for our club and the community.

https://theportraits.co.uk/

#Portrait #Watermillsmarshes #GreatYarmouth #Photography #Cycling