Toyota Mobility Foundation

The Toyota Mobility Foundation has launched a $4 million dollar global challenge to change the lives of people with lower-limb paralysis, culminating in the unveiling of the winners in Tokyo in 2020.

The competition is is looking for teams around the world - including startups - to create game-changing technology that will help radically improve the mobility and independence of people with paralysis. The mobility solutions of the future could include anything from exoskeletons to artificial intelligence and machine learning, from cloud computing to batteries.

Artist Yinka Shonibare MBE, photographed at his studio in Dalston. He is perhaps best known for his 1:30 scale model, Nelson's Ship in a Bottle, which occupied Trafalgar Square's fourth plinth for two years in 2010.

Artist Yinka Shonibare MBE, photographed at his studio in Dalston. He is perhaps best known for his 1:30 scale model, Nelson's Ship in a Bottle, which occupied Trafalgar Square's fourth plinth for two years in 2010.

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To raise awareness of the competition, volunteers from around the world (including athletes, presenters, scientists and artists) with lower-limb paralysis acted as spokespeople. 

I was commissioned to source, commission and liaise with photographers from various countries and create a brief in order to produce a stylistically consistent set of portraits. I was also to photograph the two London representatives, Yinka Shonibare and Sophie Morgan.

Head of Design and Research at Pinterest, August de los Reyes. Photographed at Pinterest head office in San Fransisco by Brooke Porter (www.brookeporterphotography.com)

Head of Design and Research at Pinterest, August de los Reyes. Photographed at Pinterest head office in San Fransisco by Brooke Porter (www.brookeporterphotography.com)

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Finding the photographers began with asking for recommendations and referrals, googling, searching agencies and skimming databases, and browsing scores of websites to find people with a roughly similar approach and portfolio. Narrowing them down based on their availability at short notice and, of course, budget, I presented these to the client for the final decision.

Dealing with my own, separate commissions alongside dealing with correspondence from various time zones meant late nights and early mornings, as well as lengthy, rather chaotic spreadsheets - something I've never had to deal with. And lots of coffee.

Preethi Srinivasan (founder of Soulfree) photographed near Bangalore, India by Boban James (www.bobanjames.com).

Preethi Srinivasan (founder of Soulfree) photographed near Bangalore, India by Boban James (www.bobanjames.com).

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In a nutshell, the brief was to provide two portraits of each person: one full-length, wide shot to show their environment, locating them within their country or region, otherwise at a place which might suggest their profession or background; the other was to be a closer crop, with the emphasis on them and their expression (positive, challenging etc.) at, ideally, a different location. Lighting was to be simple, minimal to none where possible.

To maintain consistency, I did the basic retouch work on the selected RAW files myself which was extremely generous of the photographers to allow.

Dr Rory Cooper Ph.D, photographed by Angelo Merendino (www.angelomerendino.com). Dr Cooper is FISA & Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA) Chair and Distinguished Professor of the Department of Rehabilitation Science & Technology, and professor of Bioengineering, Physical Med & Rehab, and Orthopedic Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh.

Dr Rory Cooper Ph.D, photographed by Angelo Merendino (www.angelomerendino.com). Dr Cooper is FISA & Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA) Chair and Distinguished Professor of the Department of Rehabilitation Science & Technology, and professor of Bioengineering, Physical Med & Rehab, and Orthopedic Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh.

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In the end, and despite best intentions and plans - as is often the case - some of it came down to what the photographers could do on the ground, what they could use to tell the story in the (usually short) time available from whatever relevant/photogenic locations they had in the vicinity. Mostly the time and location were dictated by the busy schedules of the volunteers and photographers, rather than by the best light or ideal spot. But you wouldn't know! - I think they did a superb job, and the launch was a great success.

Paralympian rower Sandra Khumalo at Victoria Lake Rowing Club in Germiston, Johannesburg. Photographed by Ilan Godfrey (www.ilangodfrey.com).

Paralympian rower Sandra Khumalo at Victoria Lake Rowing Club in Germiston, Johannesburg. Photographed by Ilan Godfrey (www.ilangodfrey.com).

 Paralympian - Sandra Khumalo - Ambassador

So, happy with the results (and slightly baffled as to how I got it done), I have now have on file fifty or so photographers around the world I could contact should this come up again - a pretty comprehensive spreadsheet. If only I could remember where I filed it...

Presenter, reporter, artist and model Sophie Morgan, photographed near Tower Bridge, London.

Presenter, reporter, artist and model Sophie Morgan, photographed near Tower Bridge, London.

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Corporate work

Here's a selection of business portraits and similar. Yes, they're nearly all corporate headshots against a light or white background. I'd normally not post these kinds of pictures but the first one I shot yesterday and felt it had a bit of personality to it which I quite liked. One headshot not being enough to justify a post, I found myself browsing others from the past year or so which stood out, and here they are. 

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Mixed bag (4)

Here's another selection of images taken over the past few months. There's something about taking commissioned work out of context and with less explanation than with a typical blog post, and putting them into these 'mixed bag' posts. Especially those shots may have come from larger series, but which would have been picked here as being the most interesting, the most representative of the set etc. as without some blog-type explanation, they could be anything, so you can see them on their own merits rather than as the usual, and rather boring-sounding, "examples of commissioned work". 

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 Scott Lloyd
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Campaign portraits

Occasionally I'll send photos directly to a designer or retoucher straight from camera. Here are a couple of recent portraits to be used in an upcoming campaign.

They will likely be cropped to simple headshots and left on a white background, so while normally I wouldn't do any editing myself on these (especially as it wasn't required), I rather liked them and so had a play around with the background to make them presentable.

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Vauxhall animation

Vauxhall put together a stop-frame animation about the typical frustrations drivers experience for their new Mokka. (Above) I photographed our model running through the gamut of expressions. Then (below) from every angle:

(Below) We then covered dozens of gestures and reactions as sequences, both left-handed and right-handed, with different expressions. 

(Below) BTS:

Take your parents to work

I had the great privilege of running my own photography/Instagram stall at Facebook's first "Take your parents to work" day. I gave visitors pointers on photography, helped them understand the IG app, and edited a few pictures.

Questions ranged from, "What is Instagram?" to "Why don't I look nice in photos?" - as well as the ubiquitous, "How can I get more followers?" (which was my question). It was a lot of fun!  

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Here's a collection of (mostly) recent shots:

For this portrait, I used the Magmod gobo to create a window light. Really lovely bit of kit!

For this portrait, I used the Magmod gobo to create a window light. Really lovely bit of kit!

A quick portrait for the charity Sense, who were working with Wayne McGregor dance at their new studios at the Olympic park. 

A quick portrait for the charity Sense, who were working with Wayne McGregor dance at their new studios at the Olympic park. 

Product photography for Fruitflow, a natural supplement which improves blood flow.

Product photography for Fruitflow, a natural supplement which improves blood flow.

Noma Dumezweni, who plays Hermione in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, wins best actress at the Mousetrap Awards. 

Noma Dumezweni, who plays Hermione in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, wins best actress at the Mousetrap Awards. 

Shot for The Times, there weren't many options for this portrait of an entrepreneur. They wanted him photographed outside next to some goalposts. Sadly, the goals were half-size and we only had a few minutes before the kids' teams took over the pitch. We did what we could, but it quickly turned into the photographer's (dreaded) "Man in a Field" situation, which I obliged but - well, let's just say there won't be a blog post about this shoot. As the saying goes, "I don't want excuses -I want pictures."

Shot for The Times, there weren't many options for this portrait of an entrepreneur. They wanted him photographed outside next to some goalposts. Sadly, the goals were half-size and we only had a few minutes before the kids' teams took over the pitch. We did what we could, but it quickly turned into the photographer's (dreaded) "Man in a Field" situation, which I obliged but - well, let's just say there won't be a blog post about this shoot. As the saying goes, "I don't want excuses -I want pictures."

Roy G. Biv and all that. Apparently, Isaac Newton added the indigo (previously they used to think there were three colours, then five, then six in a rainbow). And nobody knew what a rainbow was until the 17th century. The Greeks thought rainbows were a path created by the goddess of the rainbow, Iris, linking us to the immortals. Anyway, there aren't three, five, six or seven colours, but millions, all blending into one another. 

Roy G. Biv and all that. Apparently, Isaac Newton added the indigo (previously they used to think there were three colours, then five, then six in a rainbow). And nobody knew what a rainbow was until the 17th century. The Greeks thought rainbows were a path created by the goddess of the rainbow, Iris, linking us to the immortals. Anyway, there aren't three, five, six or seven colours, but millions, all blending into one another. 

Huawei - The New Aesthetic

At the end of 2016, MA Design: Ceramics, Furniture, Jewellery and MA Industrial Design students at Central Saint Martin's College were tasked with a brief to create new accessories for the brand, based around the concept of "The New Aesthetic". The winner and runner-up designs were developed into models and showcased at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona to coincide with the launch of Huawei's P10 phone.

David Kim, Huawei Brand Director, introduces the brief and gives a background to the company. Not so well-known here, yet Huawei is the world's 3rd largest smartphone vendor, after Samsung and Apple.

David Kim, Huawei Brand Director, introduces the brief and gives a background to the company. Not so well-known here, yet Huawei is the world's 3rd largest smartphone vendor, after Samsung and Apple.

Two design masterclasses followed later from Mark Delaney, Head of Huawei London Design Centre, and Abi Brody - formerly of Apple, PayPal and eBay - who is Chief Designer + VP at Huawei Consumer.

 Abi Brody - Huawei Masterclass at CSM
 Abi Brody - Huawei Masterclass at CSM
In February, students presented their ideas in front of the panel of judges from Huawei and CSM.

In February, students presented their ideas in front of the panel of judges from Huawei and CSM.

The winning design - Spectra - is a necklace which scans colours and textures, transforming them into sounds. The user can "collect" sounds to create a kind of music as a way to document their experiences of a place.

The winning design - Spectra - is a necklace which scans colours and textures, transforming them into sounds.

The user can "collect" sounds to create a kind of music as a way to document their experiences of a place.

The entries are debated until late in the afternoon, and the winning team announced.

The entries are debated until late in the afternoon, and the winning team announced.

The winners - Spectra.

The winners - Spectra.

Battle

I came across one of these online the other day so dug out some more - they're from a dance competition a while back with a variety of styles for each battle, including Krump, Breakdance, Tutting, Boogaloo and House:  

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The amazing Joey again, this time around various Brighton landmarks to publicise the upcoming UK tour.

We started early on Brighton beach, with the sun to the South-West - low and strong - exactly what I didn't want. Ideal for a silhouette - but Joey doesn't make for a silhouette.

Yes, we could have moved to the other side of the pier to have the sun lighting it from the side, but that would have been a bit of a hassle to move, and too easy to shoot. He's quite large, so I doubled up flashes (a first for me) and set them to full power to overpower the sun. A third flash was held up, pointing at his face.

 Joey visits Brighton ahead of his UK tour

Moving further down the beach, something similar but facing out of shot:

 Joey visits Brighton ahead of his UK tour
 Joey visits Brighton ahead of his UK tour

After a public launch event, we went to the Royal Pavilion where I shot similar from a stepladder. Other than rearing (which I liked less) there's not much for Joey to do, so it actually comes down to Jack (who controls Joey's head) to take more of a role. When I couldn't see Jack's face, it just didn't work. Finally we went inside to this lovely room (below) for one more quick photo to the bemusement of the many visitors just off camera left.

It's an amazing show - see it if you can.

 Joey visits Brighton ahead of his UK tour