Lomo time




Wowie! Visual overload!


Another shot of Ian Simpson at Slaughterhouse Studios


A couple of teaser photographs here from a photo shoot i did with Ian Simpson of Slaughterhouse Studios in Manchester.  The idea was to play on the name of Slaughterhouse where the shoot took place and get some great character portraits.

I’ve been trying some new lighting setups for a more commercial feel to the images, all shot with Profoto lighting

Ians chopper plays a big part in many of the shots but the scull we found in the studio added the extra feel to the name

Happy Happy Happy, Joy Joy Joy

I promise this is not all doom and gloom, it has been after all a busy two weeks for the worlds media. Col. Gaddafi running from the troops, more economic instability, newspapers bemoaning the horrors of riots, burnt out businesses, streets full of glass and even loss of life…the catastrophic behaviour of a few effecting the whole population..and yet I learn today that Manchester is yet again about to loose valuable talent to where, yes, you guessed it..London.

Now do not read betwixt these lines, nor find any reason to find ulterior motive in my conscious efforts to encourage more trade between the South and North, I truly don’t have any. I too fled the unyielding and creatively stifling landscape of the north for our capital city many years ago but I found more exciting and lucrative business to be had in many more places than the creative pockets of Portabello Road and Brewery Street.

It is with heavy heart however that I learn this week that the photographic industry of Manchester is to loose four more talented people to London’s draw. It is no mystery as there is more work, better paid jobs, more chance of getting paid on time, more talented photographers and equally important agencies keeping the fires of industry stoked. What does the future hold for Manchester’s photographic scene if all we have left is Catalogue Companies and cottage industry fashion labels that refuse to pay for quality editorial photography?

It’s time for that revolution people. So please, join me in supporting Manchester’s Photographic Industry, help me prove to the world that it offers so much more than sportswear and the possible increase in income from a small number of growing Ad Agencies.

Stop the dilution of photographic talent in this city.

Stop the apathy creeping in.

Stop the assumptions that all photographers and studios in Manchester are without character, skill and money grabbing faceless companies.

Support your local businesses in recognising that this city has so much more to offer if you were to just spend as much time looking around the corner as you do towards EC2.

But most of all, stop the flood of work pouring into London just because Manchester has spent recent years moaning about it, rather than doing something about it.

Make a start today by calling 0161 745 4232 and ask to book this studio for your next photo shoot.

New Kids on the Block…

Styling a shoot is never as easy as the professionals make it look, after 23 years in the industry I have witnessed some moments of inspired genius with washing up bottles and super glue, you would be forgiven to think it were a scene from Blue Peter. So to find a lack of busy, talented and energetic stylists here in Manchester brought worry and fear for the growing fashion, music and commercial stills & films being made in my studio. It is a short list of people I would suggest if I got the call, as I often do. It often results in people being brought up from London for the day, which results in a lack of northern talent exposed to agencies, magazines and media groups in the south (ie: the ones that pay).

So to be visited today by the wonderful Julia Dakin (24) and saved from my consternation, she is a breathe of fresh air. Now since Julia graduated from London College of Fashion 3 years ago she has not been languishing in a post University stupor waiting for the phone to ring, oh no.. She has Assisted on shoots with such luminaries as Nick Knight, Rankin, Natalie David, Ellen von Unworth and Mr. Delightful himself, Terry Richardson. DoP’s such as Joost van de Berg and Chris van Ash. Julia has also worked on LFW for the past two years with Marc Jacobs et al, worked on a growing number of magazine shoots for Dazed, Vogue Japan, Arena Homme, Volt and Harpers Bazaar, to name but a few. Commercial shoots have been part of her career also, with TopShop, TopMan and TopShop Japan keeping her hand in Hi-Fashion. Recently however, her high points have been working alongside Anna Travelyan and Nicola Formichetti and styling Lady Gaga’s last three videos.

What more can I say about this tiny wee girl from Hazel Grove? She is excited about her new career in the North West, she is not too balanced on 2 wheels and she is looking forward to working in my day light studio. (note Layla).

So take a look at the few images I can publish without upsetting mags, agents and labels. Book her for your next fashion shoot or feature video. Or arrange to meet her and look at her book. She has returned to Manchester hungry for work, on the prowl for young and exciting new talent in the region and to make her mark here in Manchester. And Manchester welcomes her. Welcome back Julia. Now get to work.

Julia will be combining talents with Layla Sailor here at the studio very soon so look forward to seeing documentary shots of their exploits over the coming weeks.

Julia Dakin




Casting Couch…

To all of you who know me by now, I am always in search of excellent talent here in the North West and today is no different, I am compiling a list for the studio’s new community site to be launched over the next few weeks. So a call to arms (no pun intended regarding today’s news..), I need a list of your favourite make-up artists, stylists, art directors, hair stylists, re-touch artists and the more pro-active photographic assistants that all work in and around the Manchester area. Ones who have a proven track record, time served with well known and traceable CV’s.

So get in touch via the usual methods.

Many thanks,

Papa x