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A Date with ‘The Hexecutioner’ in Monaco

Known to the public as ‘the Hexecutioner’, Hekkie Budler is a professional boxer and world champion in his minimumweight class. I went to Monaco to photograph this tiny champ when he came to the South of France to train for a major boxing tournament in Monte Carlo. Photographers be warned: in the world of boxing, showers of sweat and blood are an occupational hazard. Continue reading…

Rear view of the tattoos on the back of boxer Hekkie Budler in the ring

a dog’s life in cannes

Cannes is known all over the world for its film festival and timeless French Riviera glamour. La Croisette is The Place to stroll along, to see and be seen. Below eye level, a surprising number of rather glamorous, happy-looking dogs can be seen promenading too. A dog’s life on the French Riviera can be a very good one.

Earlier this year, I went to Cannes as writer and photographer to work on a magazine feature about pampered Cote d’Azur pooches. Shooting a series of doggy street portraits posed plenty of logistical challenges. Continue reading…

Chinese crested dog puppy wearing a sequinned coat walking along a lawn

Monaco: a quiet king among estate agents

Individual estate agents may or may not live up to it, but the profession does have a certain reputation. When I was sent on assignment to Monte Carlo by a Dutch photographer agency to take the portrait of a top Monaco real estate agent and do some villa photography of his Côte d’Azur portfolio, I was apprehensive. Would this king property broker to Monaco’s super-rich be a larger-than-life version of the estate agent stereotype? Continue reading…

Portrait of Pieter van Naeltwijck

food photography: the wonderful world of sprouts

I have been living and working as an English photographer in France for over 7 years and am no stranger to the phrase ‘lost in translation’. However, it struck me afresh at a recent photoshoot what a difference just four missing letters can make.
My assignment was for a German book publisher who wanted a food photographer in the South of France to illustrate a rather special new recipe book. From the very first email, a key misunderstanding ensued. Continue reading…

Vegetable smoothies, photographed from above

baby swap in Cannes

In the next few months, a court case will be heard in Grasse that will put the South of France in the national spotlight. Ten years ago, Sophie Serrano discovered that her daughter was not in actual fact her daughter. Now her claim against the matermity clinic in Cannes, where this first ever proven case of a baby swap in France occurred back in 1994, is due in court. It was a priviledge for me as a photographer to create this portrait, where the visual aspect of a mother-daughter connection is so poignant. Continue reading…

Portrait of two women photographed in the woods

corporate portraits: insurance is fun

I packed my bags and traded the South of France for England last month, the chosen photographer for a leading British insurance provider’s new marketing campaign. Portraits were to be taken of over 60 genuine insurance agents ‘being themselves’ – and also being fun, friendly and professional. It was a challenging commission, realised with the cunning use of mood cards – and flapjacks. Continue reading…

Portrait of a woman dressed in black with glasses, raising her fists in a triumphant manner to the camera