Brian Cox, CBE is a Scottish actor who initially gained recognition for his portrayal of King Lear with the Royal Shakespeare Company. As well as being a talented thespian, he has also made a solid name for himself in major Hollywood productions such as X-Men 2, Troy and Rise of the Planet of the Apes. He was also the first man to play Hannibal Lector on-screen, in the 1986 Michael Mann film, Manhunter. I cannot begin to state the awe I felt when Brian Cox – even more so when he turned up for our London shoot on the back of a scooter. Having the star of my favourite episode of Hammer House of Horror, the Silent Scream, sitting and posing for me was such a treat – it really makes your job as a photographer that little bit easier when you work with an actor who can tell a whole story with just one look. He is such a funny and pleasant man who, at the same time, has such a commanding aura about him. I had an absolute blast working with him in what was a truly humbling experience.
Like many I have been watching Game of Thrones, and the opportunity came this week to Photograph Liverpool Born Actor and Star of Thrones Steven Cole, who plays Kovarroin season two. Cole best known for playing the role of Leo Johnson on the popular British soap opera Brookside from 1996 to 2001. He has also appeared in the British TV series Merseybeatand Doctors. Steven needed an update of his Acting Portfolio, and I was glad to setup a Portrait Sitting at my Liverpool Studio. Steven wanted a combination of Acting and Lifestyle Photography and we worked through a varied amount of looks throughout the Session. It was wonderful to here about Steven’s recent projects and his work on Game of Thrones. From a short Two Hour Photoshoot, we captured some striking frames.
The Session gave me a chance to get Hands on with my New Compact Fuji XPro 1 & 18-55mm F2.8 Lens and the results look stunning.
Ian McShane is an English Actor, Director, Producer and Voice Artist. From Lovejoy to Deadwood and Pirates of the Caribbean, McShane is a Screen legend. From a lawless saloon owner to the sexiest of beastly British mobsters, award-winning actor Ian McShane has, time and time again, captured the public’s attention by playing bad guys, scoundrels and thieves. “The devil has the best tunes!” he has said with a gleam in his eye. McShane was named “TV’s Sexiest Villain” by People Magazine, and was one of GQ’s “Men of the Year,” which described his portrayal of Deadwood’s Al Swearengen as “infectious” and “irresistible.” McShane haling from Blackburn, was a must for my Northerners Portrait Exhibition. I wrote to Ian’s agency and touched lucky as he was in London promoting his new Film Cuban Fury.
Arriving at Bleeding Heart Yard Photography Studios, Ian had the energy and drive of a man half his age, it’s very easy to forget that he is 71. Before the session I had a good chat with Ian he mentioned he had to skip his last term at RADA to make a movie “The Wild And The Willing”. “They told me, ‘If you do this film, you might not get your certificate.’What, I need a bit of paper on the wall telling me I’m an actor?” Still, they gave it to him in the end. “Signed by John Gielgud! I spoke to him about it much later on when he did an episode of Lovejoy. I said, ‘Thanks for signing my RADA certificate, John.’ Ooh, dear boy, not at all…‘He kept calling me Loveboy. ‘Loveboy, I say…’ Um, John, it’s Lovejoy.‘‘Lovejoy, Loveboy, who cares?'”
It was an amazing experience to photograph Ian. I am a BIG fan of Deadwood, and during the photoshoot I said jokingly “give me the Al Swearengen look“ Ian Replied in his signature voice“You will have to pay me for that.“ Plain simple expression was my theme for the Portrait Session, shot on black backdrops the images really show the texture and character of Ian McShane.