A promotional shoot for Balls & Glory - and this brilliant looking model was one of 6 different characters presenting a different 'ball'! Balls & Glory was set up by a young chef from Ghent, Wim Ballieu, who I am reliably informed is the Belgian Jamie Oliver! He has opened two restaurants (Ghent & Bruges - and is soon opening one in Brussels) that only serve meatballs! There are a variety of fillings to choose from, simple mash potato & coleslaw on the side and local beers and juices. All his meat is locally sourced (mostly from his family farm) and I can't wait to try it out.
A few kilometres along the Sambre river from Namur, in the Val St Georges, lives great grandmother Pauline Marchal.
Every Thursday she heads to the local nursery school to read stories to the children - her arrival greeted with excited calls of 'Mme Pauline'. Mme Pauline is a bit of a legend around these parts - other than reading to them, she babysits nightly, helps with homework, looks after them when they are ill and dresses up as St Nicolas once a year. The walls of her home are pasted with photographs of hundreds of smiley young faces - she refers to them all as her grandchildren. She tells me proudly of one woman who has become a teacher, moved to Liège and found her own 'Mme Pauline' to read to her classroom.
She doesn't enjoy talking about herself as much - she has lost her husband and two of her sons. Although the memories are bittersweet, she plays me some home videos from the time she spent living in the Congo in the late 50s, when she was my age now and her children were not much older than the ones she reads to today.
Until analog photography became pretty much unaffordable or at least incompatible with actually trying to earn a living from photography, I shot a lot of film. Since I never throw anything away; I have baskets, albums and scrapbooks full of photos I barely look at.
2013 is the year I do something with all these pieces of paper and since the best way I know how these days is to stick them on a computer, I've decided to start a blog series in order to throw a few of them up every so often... so here is 'from the archives #1' - a few shots of my friends Kate and Jo from the days we lived together in Hackney Central, London, early 2005.
An outtake from Day 2 in Malta - We (those that were able to make it to the rendez-vous by 11am after the night before!) spent the day in Gozo. On the way back to Malta we stopped off at the Blue Lagoon - consistently in the 'top 3 things to do in Malta' lists. Impeccable water, uninhabited rocky island... but tends to be very touristy. The 6 of us arrived in the early evening and were completely alone, not another soul around... quite blissful. It was a little too chilly to swim but we did anyway, very worth it.Speedy impro shoot of our international group - Maher (Tunisia), Lucie (France), Kjersti (Norway), Angie (Austria) & Lea (Switzerland/Another planet):
Breast cancer awareness month rolls around in October each year. Sanoma media, with it's numerous publications, reaches over 60% of the female readership in Belgium and the 'Pink Ribbon magazine' is distributed for free alongside all those publications in order to promote breast cancer awareness. This year, the Pink Ribbon team decided to build a website and keep the campaign rolling throughout the year. I was asked to set up a temporary studio at a recent event and add to the ongoing collection of such shots on the facebook page (you can even upload your own shot by downloading the cover art from the website).
I took a little break after hitting the one year mark... a few weeks of leaving the house without feeling guilty if I didn't bring my camera, time to redo my website, make it simpler, faster and so on - mostly thanks to my brother, James (he makes really good music, you should buy some). Anyway, it's not quite ready... still figuring out a good system for ordering prints - should take a couple of weeks. In the meantime, you can always email me a request. The last month has been pretty busy, mostly client work - I'll post a small selection tomorrow, when I'll be fully done with my editing. For now, here are a few faces I've met this month.
Halloween and Claire's Bday = small party at our place (no neighbours to annoy, no sleeping babies...) I didn't dress up because I never do - I'm a bore like that - but a few people did. Best costume of the night was definitely this one - Juno boy (whatever the character's name is), astonishing likeness!
Dropped in on Ziggy rehearsing today and grabbed a couple of snapshots, mostly light testing and location scouting. They're recording in the studio next week so lots to lock down. Pumpkin curry and a pleasant enough/slightly cheesy movie (Mao's Last Dancer) with Canan, Mireille & Angie this evening.
Said goodbye to Tom & Maya off to work and nursery respectively. Quick coffee with Becs and then home to Brussels. About twenty minutes after landing, Tom called to say that Becs was in hospital ready to give birth - Typical! Brand new Leo was eventually born around 11pm and, despite his terrible sense of timing, I can't wait to meet him. Not sure how people manage with two babies though - Angie and me exhausted from a few days of just the one ball of concentrated energy.