They say that a change is as good as a rest, but it’s been a relentless year (or two) so we need both of those things right now!
I’m still wandering the lanes and backroads getting excited about the smallest things – a pheasant that ran alongside me for a while, a hedgerow full of snowberries, piles of rich coloured apples rotting into the ground, rogue vegetables on the roadside. I’ll take the joy wherever I can find it.
I went for a walk to the black apple trees but was side-tracked on the way there by a woman with a rat trap.
After 20 months of working from home I went to Paris for a work trip. It was an amazing, refreshing, revitalising, perfectly timed, whirlwind of a day.
I booked a fringe trim at the hairdressers but they couldn’t find the right button so booked me in for a beard trim.
I saw seven magpies eating a dead deer at the side of the road.
I joined the Vogue Italia team for Photo Vogue Festival in Milan (from my home in England) for portfolio reviews with photographers from around the world.
The British Beauty Council ran a feature on Toiletries Amnesty’s campaign for 1% for Hygiene Poverty (you can read it here).
I super glued my hand to a tube of super glue.
Are you ever online shopping and pop something into your basket, then before you know it you’ve bought it? Happens to me sometimes with cars.
This month’s reading list goes something like this: Haynes Manual for the Audi 100.
There’s been a brilliant response to our new publishing project, Shutter Hub Editions. POETRY was selected by Catherine Boardman as Cultural Wednesdays ‘book of the week’ (you can buy it here), pre-orders and requests from industry specialist are coming in for YEARBOOK 2021 (you can buy it here) and we’ve launched a call for entries for our next book, ROAD TRIP (you can submit images here).
We have two ‘real world’ Shutter Hub exhibitions launching in the new year. POSTCARDS FROM EUROPE will open at Cambridge University in January, showcasing several hundred photographic images from across the continent, sharing aspects of European culture and spanning all genres of photography.
We will also be showcasing a selection of images from POSTCARDS FROM GREAT BRITAIN, a large-scale project from Shutter Hub, which invited photographers to share their visions of British culture through photographic images and create conversations and exchange. Pop-up exhibitions were held in 19 separate locations across Europe (full list here), showcasing thousands of postcard-sized images, and this exhibition at Cambridge University will be the 20th and final exhibition in the series.
It was wonderful, and a bit weird, to share our home in Fabric Magazine this autumn (featured here). I’ve never really thought to share much more about the things that I think make a good home, or my womble-like nature of gathering things together from random places. (Yes, one of my prized possessions is a vase I found in a wheelie bin!)
It’s just what I do, what I’ve always done. I’ve been buying and selling stuff since I was a kid. A favourite story of mine is how I speculated 15p on a misprinted Ridgeway Homemaker plate (because my pocket-money didn’t stretch as far as the perfect examples) and later sold it on to a collector for £50.
This year some of the best joys that have passed through my hands are a Milo Baughman table which ended up in a Belgravia antiques shop, vintage Japanese ceramics which ended up in the home of Paloma Faith, and a painting of the Bay of Naples from the Grand Tour era, which quite perfectly sold to someone in the Bay of Naples.
I love stuff, I just don’t need to own it all forever, and that’s the beauty of old things – they have a life, a story to tell and share, and their journey is what makes them special.
I’ve got an ashtray full of chocolate coins, Air Wolf is on the tele and I’m drinking a Snowball. Welcome to 1984. (That’s accidentally scary!)
Let’s appreciate the season and put lights up in the dark winter, take the bit of holiday break to enjoy some walks and some low sun, it’ll be time to head into spring soon.
If you’d like to keep up with what I’m up to work-wise (talks, events, exhibitions, that kind of stuff), you can find my Agenda on my website. And, if you’d like updates about all sorts of nice things, in your inbox, you can join my mailing list here.