A Portrait of Chantel

A portrait of Chantel from my series of people in Suffolk & Norfolk.

Spoken in her own words and photographed at her Norfolk home.

“I have been in the UK for 11 years, I came via Kamapla, coming to England as a refugee to escape the bad war in DRC. I still have family in DRC and also in Kampala, but sadly I don’t see them.
I miss Congo very much, although it has many problems It is still my home.

We came to the UK without anything, it has been difficult. Refugee life is not good, but at least there is peace and we feel safe. The children go to school and are doing well.
My five boys are all very good. One is not living here, but the others are all at home. One plays football for Wroxham FC and the others are at school and college doing very well, going to university”

#DRC #Uganda #Portrait #Wroxhamfc #Refugee #positive #stories #norfolk #norwich #watermillsmarshes

https://theportraits.co.uk/

A few weeks before the Covid 19 pandemic I was commissioned to create a series of visuals for a Hospice.

A few weeks before the Covid 19 pandemic I was commissioned to create a series of visuals for a Hospice.

I was greeted by a truly gentle calming and inspiring location. Gentle and Calming, just as one would hope a Hospice would be and inspiring due to the caring and friendly nature of the staff.
What I witnessed during my time on site was a building that seemingly functioned effortlessly around the patients and their families.

Of course, it wasn’t effortlessly at all, the staff & volunteers work terrifically hard at creating such an environment.
One which provides a suitable, dignified and calming place to reflect, celebrate lives and care for patients.

#Hospice #Care #Healthcare #Keyworker #Nurses #Dr #Photography #charity

Stunning Iceland Capture

I’ve just finished logging my Iceland images shot in February and somehow, when editing a selection a few weeks back missed this beautiful capture.
Evoking feelings of the location, temperature and senses, I truly love the softness and almost brush stroke feel to this image.

A lovely capture shot on my little Fuji XF

#Iceland #landscape #Fuji

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! “