Giles Penfound | The Conflict of Photography

The banner used for the Giles Penfound Podcast on Breathe Pictures

In this week’s Breathe Pictures podcast, I’d like to you hear, to meet, Giles Penfound, a former head of press photography for the British Army. Early in 2017 I made a film with Giles, a link to that is below – and during the podcast you’ll hear him make reference to the photographs that he shows within that film. If it weren’t for his graphic description of the images, this episode may just have resided as that film, but the ability to transpose this to sound only is testament to how Giles describes his life as a photographer in the army and what it means to be a professional photographer in that most challenging theatre of war.

His time in Northern Ireland, his work during conflicts in Bosnia and Iraq as an army photographer leave a pictorial legacy, many of his photographs are historical documents, some have been used as evidence in international court. So today’s programme is a real journey of light and shade, it’s not simply about the sharp end of military photographic duty, it’s about how a photographer starts, finds inspiration, finds the craft, hones that craft and turns it to subject matter of a somewhat lighter nature sometimes.

You’re about to hear the gentle, honest, observational, authentic, sometimes troubled thoughts of a photographer who earned clear respect from Colonel Tim Collins who during the 2003 Iraq war made that infamous ever-of-battle speech, a copy which apparently hung in the Oval Office. During an interview for the BBC, he compared the honesty of Giles work to that of the legendary war photographer Robert Capa, who is widely regarded as one of the most influential and greatest combat photographers in history. The Podcast is available through the iTunes, Podcast player and if you’re an iPhone user, the incredibly good podcast app, Overcast.

Black and white photographs of pictures taken by the conflict and army photographer Giles Penfound

Photographs copyright Giles Penfound, used with permission

The film: War Photographer Life Photographer
Giles Penfound returns to Bosnia: Mail online story
The People at Jodhpur Junction: http://blog.leica-camera.com/2015/08/06/giles-penfound-the-people-at-jodhpur-junction/

Steve Shipman Celebrities and Weddings

I first met the photographer Steve Shipman in 2013. He was attending a photography workshop I was hosting about still images and sound combined, ironically. Actually, it was the first workshop I’d hosted for photographers… I’d been shooting professionally less than a decade. He’d been photographing for considerably more time. He was the ninth name to book on and I made a note about him. In the margin for more information I wrote; ‘Very proficient photographer, really nice chap too.’

But Steve is so much more than that, which you’ll gather by a sample of his work below and this third episode of the podcast. Keanu Reeves, Sir Anthony Hopkins, Baroness Thatcher have all sat for him. His portfolio reads as a who’s who of well known personalities and historical figures. So, I’m rather pleased if a little embarrassed he granted me his considerably proficient time back in 2013 because although I didn’t know it then, I’d just fortuitously bumped into a, one in a million type person.

I think if you asked anyone lucky enough to be his friend, you’d probably find one word appear more than any other when asked to describe this really nice chap; generous. Because despite all the people he’s photographed, the stories he’s told, the newspapers and magazines that have shared his work all over the globe and even the fact seven photographs of his feature within the National Portrait Gallery’s collection, arguably the most important British archive for photographers and photography, despite all that, he’d never be too busy if you were to call, I never heard him belittle, run down or decry another’s work or most importantly passion for the business or art of photography.

This hospitality, this generosity is what’s so precious about professionals like Steve, because we’re not all blessed to be in possession of a nature so authentically balanced. The links below guide you to his website and Micro Stories Blog, which completes the narrative of the story today.

A selection of pictures from Steve Shipmans podcast page on Breathe Pictures

Photographs copyright Steve Shipman, used with permission

A Grim New Reality (Micro Story): http://steveshipmanphotography.com/reality/ 
Playing to the Gallery: http://steveshipmanphotography.com/playing-gallery/
Steve Shipman Photography: http://steveshipmanphotography.com/
National Portrait Gallery, Steve Shipman: https://www.npg.org.uk/collections/search/person/mp70067/steve-shipman
Epidemic Sound for the soundtracks of this show: https://www.epidemicsound.com/
Steve Shipman | The Photographers. A short film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FnVVOx0rlR4 

Tom Stoddart Photojournalist

Black and white banner that appears on the Breathe Pictures Tom Stoddart podcast page

Tom Stoddart is my guest in this second Breathe Pictures episode. Known and respected widely as one of the world’s most respected photojournalists, his photographs of conflict and unrest, famine and pivotal historical moments such as the fall of the Berlin Wall, the election of President Mandela, and the siege of Sarajevo undeniably shaped and still form public opinion. The Podcast opens, and closes in fact, where it all began for him decades ago; a small fishing village in Northumberland, an unlikely and very peaceful part of the country to inspire such a rich photographic career when you consider the places my guest has travelled and the scenes he has witnessed before his lens. If photojournalism is a genre that inspires you, then this episode unravels some of the skills and attributes believed to be paramount to assume such an important legacy career in photographic story making.

Listen to the podcast at the foot of this post and subscribe for regular episodes. This episode was originally made as a short film which is linked to below with further links about the photographer. All photographs used by permission from the copyright holder: Tom Stoddart. Any and all images should not be used or redistributed without consent from the photographer and/or representing agency.

Photographs copyright Tom Stoddart, used with permission

Tom Stoddart’s website: http://www.tomstoddart.com/
Famine, War and Politics, a short film about Tom Stoddart: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzCVEN2_p14
Getty page for Tom Stoddart: https://bit.ly/2NSzGpz
Reportage by Getty: http://www.reportagebygettyimages.com/tom-stoddart/#biography
Soundtracks to the show from Epidemic Sound: https://www.epidemicsound.com

X-Weddings Conference 2018 LIVE podcastFeaturing Kevin Mullins, Patrick La Roque, Facundo Santana, Marianne Chua, Dom and Liam Shaw

Banner to show the podcast for the X-Weddings conference

The first episode in this new season of podcasts is recorded on location at the X-Weddings Conference, held in Bath, England. The conference was created by Kevin Mullins, a Fujifilm camera system ambassador. Designed to bring together photographers who use Fujifilm X system cameras, it was an opportunity for likeminded shooters to hear from some internationally known names who are in Fuji’s ecosystem. The half hour show visits the conference and dips into the speakers’ sessions.

Kevin Mullins: https://www.kevinmullinsphotography.co.uk/
Facundo Santana: http://www.facundosantana.com/
Patrick La Roque: https://www.laroquephoto.com/
York Place Studios | Dom and Liam Shaw: https://www.yorkplacestudios.co.uk/
Marianne Chua: https://www.mariannechua.com/
Neale James: https://www.nealejames.com/
X-Weddings Conference: https://www.x-weddings.co.uk/
Epidemic Sound: https://www.epidemicsound.com/
Fujifilm UK: https://www.fujifilm.eu/uk

Photographs copyright Facundo Santana, used with permission

The Breathe Pictures podcast is a new show that’s all about photography, photographers, film making and film makers, in fact anything that involves imaging. Just to give you a taster, over the coming months, we’ll be talking to conflict shooters, those who photograph the royals, underwater film makers, celeb shooters and those at the real sharp end of competition, such as wedding and social shooters – learning how they make pictures, what makes them tick, we’ll unashamedly nerd out a little too. I’d be pleased for reviews of course and if you’re a photographer, film or image maker with a story to tell, I’d be delighted to hear from you through the contact widget in the footer. Enjoy the show.

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