Social Documentary

A Tough Job with SSAFA (Armed Forces Charity)

I've left it a week before I wrote this blog because it's taken me this long to come to terms with the assignment I have just completed with SSAFA (Soldiers, Sailors & Airmen's Families Association), who have just become a new client for my professional photography business.

If you haven't heard of SSAFA, you can follow this link to see who their charity helps.  They were formed and designed to help the armed forces, Veterans and their families with a number of issues.

They support the British military at home and abroad and are the oldest and longest running military charity.

The assignment I was given, was to make a photographic reportage documentary about an event where the Parents and families of the fallen military men and women, come together to remember them and to help provide support for each other.

It was a very difficult assignment because it felt like being a photographer at a funeral.  The families were sometimes very emotionally upset and to point a camera at the parents of a fallen soldier didn't come naturally.  I truly felt their woes and shed some tears for them the following day, once what I'd done sank in.

I'm a firm believer in the saying that a picture is worth a thousand words, so no more from me, have a look for yourself...

Click on images to enlarge.

Thanks for reading and looking through this project.  As you may have noticed; it was very emotional for the families and difficult for me to document.

I welcome any new enquiries about working with me on any assignments, so if you'd like to discuss any future photographic projects with me, please follow this link to get in touch.

Time & Memory

We're currently studying time & memory at university but using multimedia, inclusive of stills and moving image.  I'm exploring different themes around the subject and pondering what both time and memory represent to me.  Can I make a story out of this theme, I asked myself.  

I took advantage of the foggy weather by spending the afternoon outside with my camera and found myself being drawn to St. Catherine's Church graveyard in Burbage and the outskirts of Hinckley.

Here's the contact sheets that I'm working with.

Click on each photograph to enlarge.

Where's Boudica?

The legend of Boudica is said to be still laid under the ground somewhere near to Atherstone.  Boudica led an uprising against the occupying forces of the Roman empire roughly in AD60 / 61.  Boudica was Queen of the British Iceni Tribe and led a supposedly 100,000 strong army.  They defeated the Romans in Londinium which is now St. Albans but eventually lost out to the Roman empire during the battle of Watling Street.  The precise location of the battle remains a mystery amidst speculation that Mancetter next to Atherstone one of the likely battle grounds.  The probability of this area being the battle ground is based on Roman principles of fighting, Watling Street being the main route from South to North and likely place to be met with the empirical forces coming in land from the Welsh borders.

I took a nice stroll along the possible routes Boudica and her army could have moved between British strongholds in the area.  This led me along the canal from Hartshill to Atherstone.  It is a lovely walk and here's some landscape documentary photographs covering the route.