A short multimedia slide show I did while on assignment covering the floods in the outback NSW town of Bourke for The Australian newspaper, with journalist Amos Aikman. We initially produced this piece in our rented four wheel drive on the side of the road in Bourke, so it could be uploaded to the newspaper’s website and iPad app to run with the story and photos we also filed. I recently re-edited the piece, making just a few minor changes and entered it in the Walkley Photographer’s Slide Night. It was my first entry into a Walkley event and I was pleased that the slideshow made the cut and was shown on the night.
I wasn’t a huge fan of Guns N’ Roses, and can’t say I’ve been much into Slash’s solo career, but there’s no denying he’s an absolute shredder on the guitar – and anyone who knows me knows I don’t mind a bit of guitar geekery…. So anyway a couple of weeks ago I got sent to photograph Slash for The Australian. He was in town for a couple of shows at the Soundwave festivals and to promote his upcoming album Apocalyptic Love. I don’t know what the new record sounds like, but the journalist who came along to interview Slash reckoned the new singer sounds exactly like Axl Rose – controversial. I’m no music writer so here are the pictures from a tightly controlled few minutes with the fretmaster himself. By the way, he seemed like a nice guy – he shook my hand and thanked me for coming down to take his picture. As usual, more time to do a couple of different shots would have been good, but I was only allowed one setup and the stopwatch was ticking – literally! Continue reading
A couple of days prior to the start of the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, late last year, I was assigned to go and shoot the skipper of the super-maxi yacht and five time winner of the race, Mark Richards.
I wasn’t given any specific instructions from the picture desk, but I knew right away that I wanted to go up the mast and get of a shot of the skipper up there. The mast on Wild Oats XI is 48 metres high and getting winched up there in little more than a seat with a plastic buckle holding me in was something I didn’t even think about at the time, but later when filing my pictures felt a little uneasy about. Continue reading
On July 21 2011 the action sports community lost a talented and passionate photographer. Brad Lentz and his wife Nancy were involved in an horrific car crash which tragically took the life of Brad. Nancy was seriously injured in the crash and was lucky to survive. A drunk driver crossing into their lane at high speed the culprit – lives forever changed as a result.
Jeremy Sheridan at Bordworld.com.au has set up a charity auction to raise money for Brad’s wife Nancy, and I have put up a couple of mounted 90x70cm limited edition prints. The auction only runs till this Friday, so head over here now and put a bid on one of the many items up for offer. There’s some great stuff here and as of five minutes ago there are still some crazy bargains.
I only met Brad once in person, but we communicated through email and social media often.
Brad’s star was only starting to rise in action sports photography, he was Canadian and naturally, snowboarding ran in his veins, but whilst living in Sydney with his wife Nancy he was rarely seen without a camera. He shot everything from skateboarding to early morning yoga workouts on Bondi beach. He was keen, passionate about photography, and had a thirst for knowledge of all things photo related.
I met Brad in person at this year’s Bondi Bowl-A-Rama. I was working for the newspaper The Sunday Telegraph and although I’d never met Brad before I knew exactly who he was when I first arrived at the bowl.
Not one to play the “too cool” card as many other photogs do a big events, especially skateboarding events, Brad was the guy talking to everyone around him, laughing and absolutely stoking out on the fact that he was standing on the deck of the Bondi bowl photographing some of the best skateboarders in the world. I remember having a long conversation with him about, first and foremost photo geekery, but then we talked a lot about the future and his and Nancy’s plans to head back to Canada. We showed each other shots on the back of our cameras after nailing a decent pic, and laughed at ourselves when we would screw something up.
That was to be the first and last time that I would get to hang out and geek out with Brad.
Jeremy Sheridan at Boardworld was a very close friend of Brad and Nancy and contacted me some time ago to see if I could help him with some contacts in the snow industry to get some product donated for a charity auction. I told Jeremy I wanted to help out in any way I could and suggested I could do some limited edition prints. I’m not one to think my pictures are worth anything much, but it was something that I could sure do to be part of this great cause. The money raised in the auction will go to Brad’s wife Nancy. It’s a small gesture from the Australian action sports community to pay tribute to Brad and to help Nancy out with her recovery.
Rest well Brad, I’m glad I got to spend those few hours with you.
Early last week I was sent to cover the announcement of the 2011 ARIA Award nominees at The Sydney Theatre Company in Walsh Bay, Sydney. Nominees were announced along with the winners in the artisan and fine arts categories. Melbourne based musician and singer-songwriter Gotye aka Wally De Backer was nominated for seven Aria Awards for his single Somebody I Used To Know (feat. Kimbra), three of which he was announced as a winner during the artisan and fine arts announcements. it was clear from the outset that Gotye was the news story for this year’s ARIA Awards and as such four photographers from Sydney’s major metropolitan newspapers (myself included) were clambering to get a couple of minutes with him for a set-up portrait. Continue reading
I was recently fortunate enough to be selected as a finalist in the Shoot The Chef photographic competition. The competition is run every year in conjunction with the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age’s Good Food Guide and the Crave Sydney International Food Festival.
This is the first time I have ever entered any kind of photographic competition and was pretty excited to be one of the eleven finalists.
My subject for the shoot was Hayden Ellerton, the exceptionally talented executive chef of The Terrace restaurant at The Denman Hotel, Thredbo. A close mutual friend introduced us thinking it would be the perfect pairing for such a shoot as Hayden is also a pretty talented skier and I have spent a long time shooting skiing and snowboarding, and more recently have been shooting a lot more editorial features. The hope was that we could somehow combine the two. Continue reading
A fair few of my pictures have been included in a new advertising campaign for Air New Zealand, titled Just Three Hours Away.
The ad series is an exhibition style campaign featuring snowboarding and skiing imagery from New Zealand, which is currently taking over a large portion of the advertising lightboxes and billboards at Sydney’s Martin Place train station.
The campaign also features the work of fellow action sports photographer’s Tony Harrington and Camilla Stoddart.
The Martin Place campaign runs until June 19th and just announced the campaign will also feature down at Southern Cross station in Melbourne and should be up today.
First off, I’ll say I don’t normally do a lot of product reviews, but recently on Twitter I responded to someone I follow who was heading to Japan to do some snowboarding. They were wondering whether compression tights were worth buying for the trip and I responded by saying how priceless I think they are -I’ve been a big fan of the Skins long tights for many years.
I’m no athlete, but my experience wearing Skins comes from years of photographing snowboarding and skiing all over the world. I used to use plain old thermal underwear, although that didn’t even do the job of keeping me warm most days. I found out about Skins while away on an editorial trip with a bunch of professional snowboarders from Victoria back in about 2006-they were swearing by them, but I didn’t really understand the benefits of compression tights at the time. Continue reading
A while back I was assigned to shoot the annual Bondi Bowl-A-Rama skateboarding contest, for The Sunday Telegraph. As skateboarding was what got me into photography back in my teen years, it seemed like I had come full circle by being back on the deck of a bowl with my fisheye lens photographing skateboarding – but this time for a major newspaper.
My brief was to go down and shoot some nice pictures as part of a day in the life of Sydney, although I was told by my picture editor that they weren’t holding space for it. (action sports still struggle for space in major mainstream newspapers – even surfing, which is such a huge sport in Australia)
Competitions like this are always hard to shoot. Photo passes are handed out to seemingly anyone with a DSLR, and add to that the endless line of filmers and lurkers and you have yourself one crowded skate bowl with particularly ugly backgrounds. i.e other cameras and flashes.
I decided to just have a bit of fun with it, and was super happy with this image, which I managed to nab just before I had to head back to the car to file the shots back to the paper.
The good news – they ran a fairly large picture of the comp. The bad – it was a bail! Oh well, can’t win them all!
As 24 year old Pakistan born Usman Khawaja makes his test cricket debut for Australia today, I thought it would be fitting to post a couple of shots I took of him for The Sunday Telegraph a couple of months ago.
Uzzie as he is known to his team mates, comes into the Australian cricket team at a time when the team has been playing pretty poorly, losing the Ashes series to England after being disgraced in the fourth test in Melbourne. Khawaja comes in at the number three spot in the batting order to replace the injured captain Ricky Ponting, but the feeling is he is more than just a stand-in, hence why there was media interest in him months ago. He has been scoring runs for NSW and playing in top form, and what also makes Khawaja a great news story is that he is the first non European to pull on the baggy green cap for Australia – he was born in Pakistan and moved to Australia at age three. Cricket fans have been longing for a fresh young hope to put the spark back into a lackluster team, and it looks like Khawaja is the man for the role.
The Ashes have been lost and the fifth test in Sydney which began today won’t change the outcome, but to the players this fifth test means everything, and for the fans packing the Sydney Cricket Ground today, it seems as though Khawaja means everything to them – he walked on to the ground, making his debut for Australia to deafening cheers from the fans.
He had me two months ago when I met him in a cafe at the SCG, he was wearing a Jimi Hendrix t-shirt and leather jacket – definitely the future of Australian cricket! More shots after the cut. Continue reading