Looking back at 2013

A big, big year. So many amazing opportunities, countries (26!) and of course people.

In a last minute rush on New Year’s Eve, here are twenty pictures that really stood out for me from this hectic year.

Early January, and a small boy grabs an opportune loo break against a derelict structure in the moon-like wasteland that is Dungeness. He can’t see what’s written on the other side. But I can. (You might need to click on it to see the big version and read the message. Or try this version.)

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A few days later, exploring a wintry Brighton pier, one of those moments where I get the distinct impression that me and my camera aren’t being wished an entirely prosperous fortune…

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March – and a chance encounter with a peacock in full display gave me a screen-filling abstract that I’ve enjoyed a lot since.

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One of the most fun PR jobs of the year was the full-blown zombie wedding held in One Mayfair. Here’s one of the bridesmaids during make-up, lurking in the crypt of this deconsecrated church.

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April gave me one of those moments that’s only possible through a happy coming together of circumstances. High up in Canary Wharf, shooting an event, I turn round to see an incredible rain storm moving in from the west, at dusk. The picture gets picked up on social media (thank you for Redditing it, Charlie), goes absolutely nuts, gets picked up and printed in the Telegraph, and sells a few prints. 125,000 Flickr views in that first day.

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A May break in Turkey, and way more interesting than all the mosque skylines was this casual street shot as the textile district started to wind into action for the day.

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Late spring, country cricket match, and my son hits the shot he’s always dreamed of. Got it.

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Out of the blue, a commission to do a commemorative portrait in a rather famous courtyard at the end of the Mall. Sun high and hot, horses fidgety, all turned out ok.

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English holiday scene – grumpy clouds, shaft of light, Dorset cliff. No fancy SLR here, just the little compact in my pocket. Enough.

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And to the Great Circular European Railway Challenge – taking up most of July, and yielding about 800 keepers. Of those, number one – a very lucky hit through a moving train window on the bridge between Denmark and Sweden…

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…and number two, the result of my determination to take a non-clich├ęd shot of Paris.

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Back to a busy run of PR shoots, and the launch of the new Kings Cross concourse with a splendid, retro, pop-up funfair.

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And one that I remember for the way in which it was set up. Take a model into London Fashion Week. Ask her to do something interesting with noodles. Wait for an unscripted gathering of paps, and then catch the lot. All framed and completed in about ten seconds.

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A much more sober occasion in October – and the shooting conditions were absolutely awful for the arrival of twenty Presidents and PMs from around the world. Sun so low and hard through the windows that every speck of dust hangs visibly in the air. But with a little luck, the high contrast works perfectly for one of the most charismatic of world leaders.

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A couple of days later, another leader makes a dash for it – though I do wish he’d been going the other way – an even neater story?

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A cheeky one – I’d been lining up the halo for my friend Richard, and then he put his hands together. Gift. Instant canonisation.

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And one from the half dozen weddings this year (I try to keep bookings around that number to keep them very fresh and special). One to treasure, as the emotion finally showed.

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The end of a long weekend of tech industry job promoting, and these collapsed suits seemed to strike a chord with some particular filthy minds out there. Can’t see it myself.

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And a portrait entry – this triptych of my favourite 3 Beards – created in just a few minutes with a very simple lighting set-up. Thanks so much for all the support this year guys.

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And finally, this month on a trip to Paris, again refusing to do something ‘traditional’ with the Eiffel Tower, but instead admiring the view up its skirts, as a replacement first floor is constructed.

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That’s 20. There are so many more I could have picked. On to 2014 now (after tonight’s NYE party job, of course) and hopefully many, many more like these. Big thanks to all friends, clients and mentors, and of course to the incredible Tracy Howl, Dave Bird, Olly Newport, Jez Kay and the rest of the team who’ve produced so much magic over the year.

(Clicking on these pictures should open them up in a lightbox–you can then use arrow keys to jump between them.)