Dance: Paloma Styles

I photographed dancer Paloma in Leicester Guildhall. Here she introduces herself:

Paloma Styles is a Leicester dance artist, whose true guilty pleasure could only be, R. Kelly – Trapped in the Closet. Alongside wishing there were more rap operas in the world, she also dances with Fuelled Dance Theatre, and studies for an MFA at DMU. She thoroughly enjoys the interdisciplinary mash up of ideas, like a 33-chapter rap opera – who would have thought!

Thanks to the Guildhall, Leicester for the use of their space.

Portrait of Leicester Dancer Paloma Styles


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When The Serious Work Is Done: Geisha

When The Serious Work Is Done is a series of blogs triggered by those discussions in the pub, of what would be a fun shoot. It’s by two photographers let off the leash, to go and play, then edit the photos, in their own style.

In this one,  talented wedding photographer and bundle of energy  Isoelegant used the opportunity to wear her geisha dress that she’d picked up in Japan. We then trekked a few miles up Dovedale hunting for locations. Isoelegant forged rivers, in full costume,  got cold and wet. I just pressed the shutter. Then we had an ice cream. It was great.

Here’s Isoelegant’s blog.

Isoelegant dressed as a geisha standing on a tree over a river


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Danni Spooner & Carise ZM in Leicester studio

I’ve not shown much stuff from my Leicester studio, so I thought I’d get in some friends for a photo shoot.  I asked Danni Spooner & Carise ZM for some 20’s/30’s style, but with a modern twist. And that’s just what they did.

As well as shooting digitally, I thought I’d take the large format camera for a spin. This is Sinar F1 large format camera, where the film negatives are 5″ x 4″. It’s enormously difficult to focus, so you may notice a bit of arty soft focus with the film images. I’m going to make that focusing easier, soon. For the technical, the film was Ilford FP4+ developed in ID-11.

Thanks to Derby Theatre for the chair & David Parkin for the lamp. And thank you to  Woodrow Studios for the backdrop, which was actually hand painted in the studio.

Danni Spooner & Carise ZM studio portrait Sinar F1


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Dance: Giada Maran

I photographed dancer Giada in All Saints Church, Loughborough. Here she introduces herself:

Giada is an MA Performance Practices student who loves immersive theatre and dance. She is interested in the moving body, theatre of the real, good wine and sitting in the sun. She’s splitting her time between putting off finishing her MA thesis, working and trying to challenge her body’s limits and gravity in her favourite Monday class….sometimes she manages…

Thank you to All Saints, Loughborough for the use of the beautiful space.


Photograph of Giada Maran dances against a wooden wall in a Loughborough Church


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People Of Performance Art #14: Matt Smith

I saw Matt Smith’s piece “Splintered” which he created with Meg Ullah. It impressed me with it’s simplicity and power. It’s mixture of the personal and impersonal and tempting failure. So I knew he would be a good subject for PoPA.

I returned a couple of days later. It had all disappeared, but you could tell where the flour had been, as there were patches, covered in snail trails.

Portrait of performance artist Matt Smith in Leicestershire woods

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Dance: Sarah Butler

Working in the independent sector of the performing arts, Sarah is a definite jack of all trades, master of perhaps one of two, including hanging upside down and using hands as feet. Describing herself as a lazy workaholic she is a performer, maker, cake eater and film watcher in equal measure. Feeling her list of ‘things to do’ was simply not long enough in 2014 she became a Mummy and at the beginning of this year set up her own company, butlerdancetheatre. She loves sleep and would like to have more.

Sarah Butler

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People Of Performance Art #13: Kirsty Mealing

Kirsty Mealing does a lot of acting, and she’s artistic director of Scufflebox Theatre Co, but she’s also a performance artist, which is why I thought she would be an ideal subject for PoPA. Her performance  often features existential humans in imaginary universes.

After endless tea, we found the ideal shoot locations within a few hundred yards of each other. Kirsty’s local knowledge led us to exactly what we were looking for.

First, a portrait.

Kirsty Mealing portrait colour ginger pretty girl

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Dance: Scarlett Elizabeth Turner & Joey Mottershead

Scarlett Turner is a dance artist and anarchist, her work explores sexual rebellion and other cool subject matter. Joey Mottershead is a performance artist who specialises in making people feel empty and happy. They live in a house together, they hope to someday leave.

Thanks to Silver Vine Arts for letting us have access to the space at The Queen of Bradgate, Leicester.

Joey Mottershead colour portrait long hair man natural light empty space old building

Scarlett Elizabeth Turner colour portrait red hair woman girl natural light empty space old building

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Dance: Ian Dolan

Amongst Ian’s many anxieties is the sneaking suspicion that his face is never quite doing what it should be when he’s being photographed. He has self-confessed loves of both the floor and of being upside down. Having reached 32 and managed to maintain a career in dance he’s currently taking some time to reassess what he wants to do with his body before bits of it start to refuse to work – and while he figures it out he’s happy to indulge himself in the thing that he secretly suspects he’s going to be doing for the rest of his life.

Ian Dolan, man contemporary dancing in the street in front of a door


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