As part of an NHS anti-homophobia campaign I've been shooting pictures of celebrities who are taking a stand against that intolerance. Today I met up with Wet Wet Wet star Graeme Clark to shoot his portrait. Graeme is making a comeback as a solo artist and was back in Glasgow to play an intimate gig at King Tuts as part of a country-wide tour. He's a lovely guy, very humble, very talented and very generous with his time. Could have stayed and listened to him playing all night. After all the success he had in the 1990's with the Wet's I hope he does as well as a solo artist. Check out his website here: Graeme Clark
I've been working on a project with the lovely people at Glasgow 2014 - the Commonwealth Games team. We have been working on taking a series of portraits of celebrities who are backing their "Sport Your Trainers' campaign. First to be published is the wonderful and ever youthful Carole Smillie, who I first photographed over 25 years ago, and is still looking fantastic. What's it down too? Well it's not the gym as Carol says she hates going there - she's doing something right though!
Newspapers are a dying breed according to some commentators and perhaps they are right. More and more people are turning to the internet to get their news whilst on the move. I spent over 25 years working in newspapers, starting at the Helensburgh Advertiser, which back in the early 1980's still used 'hot metal' to make up the pages, and the press they used was so old that it went to a museum in Germany when printing was centralised in 1995. The joy in seeing your pictures in print is still a pleasure that I can't explain - and it's also one I don't want to lose. So I for one hope that printed newspapers will be around for a long time yet. Charles McGhee is a newspaper man, cut a vein and I wouldn't be surprised if ink flowed out rather than blood. I first met Charles when he became the editor of the Glasgow Evening Times. A small man, with a big presence, Charles quickly made sweeping changes and modernised the Evening Times. He has the reputation of being a hard task master, but I was once told that all editors are 'monsters', it seems to come with the territory! The Charles I now know is quite different from Charles the editor. He cares deeply about journalism and is an Honorary Professor in Journalism and Media at Glasgow Caledonian University. He also was a VSO volunteer in Papua New Guinea, managing a major literacy project for two years, and is currently a member of the West of Scotland board of Maggie's Cancer Care Centres. Behind that hard outer armour he wears is a caring and charming man of many talents. I was delighted when Charles asked me to take a series of portraits of him to illustrate future online and in print products. This picture here shows the famous McGhee stare, which many a poorly prepared news editor or picture editor will be familiar with. I'm pleased to say that many of the portraits we took that day also show him smiling, which is more the man I now know.
Michelle Mone is an old friend of mine who has done ridiculously well for herself since her days as a lowly young model. Now she's one of the UK's top female entrepreneurs and owner of the lingerie company ULTIMO
At times some aspects of your life have to take a back seat for a while, this has been the case for my news blog. The week after my last post my father in-law took ill and was subsequently diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer which is caused by exposure to asbestos. Having worked most of his life as a joiner in John Browns shipyard this was almost inevitable. It is a nasty illness for which there is no cure, all that the doctor's could offer was treatment to try and prolong his life a little longer, but In our heart of hearts we knew Dad's remaining time was likely to be short. So our summer was filled with spending as much time as we could with Dad, taking him to and from hospital appointments, and chemotherapy treatments. However in between times we were determined to help Dad live his life to the full with his family, so anytime he felt up to it we would take him out in the car and have a fun day. We drove him to St Andrews on the 9th of July, which was also his birthday, we lunched in the town and Dad was fascinated by the work going on to prepare the 'Auld Grey Town' for the Open Championship which was happening a week later. We ended that day by driving to Anstruther and having fish supper at the famous Fish & Chip shop and then sat on the harbour wall and had an ice-cream - happy times.
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