A box of pictures, memories, and no real plan (yet)…

That’s the state of my next project so far, but it feels like the right time to do it at least. It’s taken a while, 4 years in the making, so no pressure.

My project, at present, is called “Standing in my mother’s kitchen”, though it has had many other names, I’m sure it will change again. It’s about me retracing my mothers life, in all it’s fascinating parts.

Where to start though? She had many different lives. Described in her obituary as the “Doyenne of the counter-culture and the British restaurant revolution”. It feels like there is too much to tell, perhaps why I feel a bit over whelmed by it all. I suppose I just need to tell it in my words and pictures, it’s not a biography, nor a historical record, it’s my personal journey along her life: the person who brought me into the world, the person I’ve been the closest to for all of my life, and who I watched died 4 years ago. She was there at the start of my life, and I was there at the end of hers, maybe this is some kind of way of linking both our lives together in someway…or maybe that just sounds really wanky!?

Me & Mum when we lived in Rome, 1988 I think.

 

I’ve done recce trips, been through boxes upon boxes of memories & old recipes, read endless old cook books, books about the 60’s & newspaper clippings, spoken to many of my her old friends and chefs, tried to trace others, cooked her recipes, relived old memories through the smells and tastes of her food, driven around empty landscapes, hung out in american diners, thought and thought way too much about what it is I really am doing (still not exactly sure what the outcome will be but maybe that is a good thing), so after all that it just feels like it’s time to do it properly. It would have been my mums 71st birthday last week, so maybe that’s given me a kick up the arse to get on with it. If I write this blog post then it’s not private any more and I’ll need to do what I say I’m doing.

I’m hoping to launch my first Kickstarter campaign in May (so I’ll be hitting you all up for support!), and then leave in June to start what ever it is that I’m doing, somewhere, well the US first, then a few places in Europe and around the UK, trying to tell a story somehow, in someway…

 

Some of the hundreds of photos I have from across her life.
Her childhood in America, 1950s
Sue + Dad LA c.'60
My grandparents in LA, 1950’s
Mum, with her mate Paul, at what may have been the Sgt Peppers shoot.

 

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Recipes & restaurant reviews

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My first attempt at Tarte Tatin, it got better after this…
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Some of my inheritance.
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Mums kitchen.

 

Tranquility

I recently had the pleasure of photographing Tim Andrews for his portrait series ‘Over The Hill’. He’s been photographed by over 300 invited photographers since being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. See the project here: Over the Hill

He has asked some of the biggest names in the business to photograph him, so when his invite came in I felt very honoured to have been asked and excited about what I could do that would be different to the rest. I looked at many of the images on his site and I admit I slightly panicked, some are very theatrical and elaborate, not at all how I photograph. I then calmed down and thought about what I wanted to do in my style. My thing is natural images of people in their own environments. So I was very happy when Tim opened his front door to his beautiful home in Brighton, I could have shot in any room really. The nerves of photographing someone whom has been previously photographed by 334 other great photographers, I was no.335, all faded away. I had a lovely morning chatting with him in his sitting room whilst he tackled a, what seemed to be near impossible, jigsaw. We chatted about loss, marriage, possessions and Wings! After the shoot came to its natural conclusion he made us some very tasty scrambled eggs, just like the ones my mum used to.

His title for my image is Tranquility, which perfectly sums up our day. Thank you Tim.

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