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Project Portrait: Day 40

Day 40 of Project Portrait. Next up we have the lovely Jess Holland. I’ve known Jess for years – she’s another journalism school alumni . Jess saw my photos of people at The Hatch and got in touch with Andrew Ibbotson. Some time later, she now works opposite me! And, I get to feature her amazing journalism work on The Next Web. I’m still amazed by how much this project has enriched my life. Jess is a freelance journalist and is probably the only graduate from my class still doing it. So you know she’s got some serious writing chops. This photo was shot just off Brick Lane, which has an amazing patch work of interesting doors and walls.

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Project Portrait: Day 39

Day 39 of Project Portrait. It’s Thursday so I’ve been digging through my Dropbox and found this little gem. This is Alex Olorenshaw an old friend of mine from journalism school. This was taken on a rooftop (uh, we were young, once) just off Brick Lane in London. This image was one of the photos that got me into photography school so I’m really proud of this, and Alex for sitting for me! Hope he doesn’t mind me digging this one out.

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Project Portrait: Day 37

Day 37 of Project Portrait, next up is Ali. Ali runs the newsagent across the road from where I live. He’s probably the loveliest newsagent I’ve ever met (and I used to do A LOT of paper rounds). I’ve lived in this area before and he remembers me when I moved back in a few weeks ago. The first thing he said was, “I see your wife is back (I’m not married, I think he was referring to Emily Mags ), so I’ve ordered more of the ciders she likes.” I was kind of blown away by the idea of him just ordering more stuff in for us. When I asked if he wouldn’t mind me taking his picture he instantly replied, “anything for you.” Again, mind blown by the smallest generosity. I think that comes across in this picture taken in his shop in Mile End.

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Project Portrait: Day 35

Day 35 of Project Portrait. Next up we have the one, the only Boris Veldhuijzen Van Zanten. Boris is the CEO and co-founder of The Next Web. He’s also my boss. I’ve worked for Boris since March this year and he’s an absolute hoot to work for. The first time I was invited over to his for dinner I woke up at 5 in the morning face down and fully clothed in my hotel room half-way through a conversation with my friend on messenger in which the last words were, “I just think you’re really fucking AWEOSME” [sic]. He’s hands down my favourite boss since Terri White. This was shot at Google Campus while Boris was in London for The Next Web’s World Tour. He’s a man who has always been on the stage – he trained to be a circus performer, but I wanted to grab him before he performed his act.

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Project Portrait: Day 34

Day 34. This time we have a one Juan Buis – he works at The Next Web in our Amsterdam HQ. Juan has these amazing glasses and I’ve always wanted an excuse to recreate one of my favourite photos of David Hockney (another excellent glasses wearer) by David Bailey (Google it!). I shot this at The Hatch London while Juan was over in London for The Next Web’s World Tour this week.

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Project Portrait: Day 30

Day 30 of Project Portrait. Better late than never, eh? This is the lovely Merilin Lilium who works at The Next Web. Merilin works on the marketing team at the company. I met her at The Next Web’s conference held in March every year. Every time I’m in Amsterdam Merilin always finds me somewhere to sit, which is normally someone else’s place who then has to find somewhere else to work for the day. Needless to say Merilin is enormously popular. This was shot at The Next Web’s HQ, and I’ve always wanted to shoot in a window and use natural light, for which this office has loads.

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Project Portrait: Day 29

Day 29 of Project Portrait. Next up we have James Maguire, Emily Mags’ brother. The three of us all live together in Mile End, where we have recently moved. James works for DoCoMo, a Japanese telecoms company in the city. I thought about where and how I would shoot James, and we were walking around Tower Hamlets cemetery looking for a quiet spot. I looked behind me and saw this amazing setting sun. The lamppost above provided the light.

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Project Portrait: Day 28

Day 28 of Project Portrait. Next up we have the incredible Nana. She is Emily Mags 90-year-old grandmother. It was her birthday this weekend and so I wanted to grab something that I felt shed some light on her amazing character. This was taken at one of her children’s homes in north London. Shooting Nana was an absolute blast. She was funny, kind, oh and a massive flirt. She would compliment me on my teeth, a lot, and ask for a kiss. But she also had a wicked sense of humour. While putting this photograph together, she leant over and said, “Emily is kissing another man”. I turned round to see Emily talking to her dad, and she burst out laughing. “You went green!” she chuckled. She has an incredible memory for poetry and would reel off verses at whim. She could even remember the lines she had at a school play she performed in when 6-years-old. If my memory was as even half sharp as hers, and my sense-of-humour still intact by the time I reached her age. I would be a very happy man. Thank you, Nana.

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Project Portrait: Day 27

Day 27 of Project Portrait. Next up is my good friend Jennifer Bradly. Another former ShortList Magazine alumni, we worked together on the magazine for just under two years before Jen went on to pastures greener at GQ magazine, where she is a sub-editor (someone who quietly ensures the writing of people like me is actually readable) and writer. I’ll be the first to admit, we didn’t get on all that well when we worked together, but outside of the job our friendship has been rock solid for years. This portrait was shot inside Conde Nast’s international magazine shop in Mayfair. I wanted to capture an aspect of Jen’s personality that I always enjoy being around. She has this amazingly strong sense of self which I deeply admire (I hope she sees as a compliment! ;))

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Project Portrait: Day 26

Day 26 of Project Portrait. This one is a bit of a treat for me. I was invited over to Leica Camera in Mayfair to have a play around with their latest camera, a £10,000 beast that can shoot cinema grade film. But I haven’t the foggiest idea how to shoot anything worthy of a camera that good. So it was lucky the still image capture was still pretty awesome. The team (thanks Jenny Hodge) even had a model on hand so I could grab a portrait for you lovely lot to look at. This is Haneke, she’s from Stockholm and is a student studying business and economics in her home town. She taught me loads about how Swedish people always watch Donald Duck (it’s like the equivalent of the Queen’s Speech so I’m told) and January in Sweden feels like an eternity. She was also a lot of fun to shoot.