I’ve always found it very difficult to put myself in front of someone else’s camera, so it was really interesting to meet Tim Andrews at his Brighton Photo Fringe exhibition ‘Over Hills and Seas‘ last month, as he’s made a long-term project out of doing exactly that.

Tim has been photographed and filmed by hundreds of photographers since he started his ‘Over the Hill’ project ten years ago, so I was more than a little nervous about asking if he’d be open to working with other local photographers (after some nudging by my partner Eleni – I call her my art director, she thinks I’m joking). Fortunately I had some cards handy (I swear by Moo mini cards, and use the holder as a keyring) so Tim was able to have a look at my previous work. I was really pleased to get Tim’s email a couple of days later, asking if I would like to photograph him – which is how we found ourselves up at Devil’s Dyke one early November morning, to catch what turned out to be pretty much the perfect sunrise for the a portrait shoot.

Tim is a fascinating person to talk to, which is how we spent the next hour or so – walking, talking, and making some portraits. We had a very collaborative approach, lots of “How about…” and “Why don’t we try…”, which I found really refreshing – it made the morning more about the conversation and the process than getting any specific shot, which resulted in some images I’m really happy with that I might not have suggested on my own.

I thought that his excellent choice of coat made some of the shots look like book promo photos for a gritty crime writer; he’s since countered that idea with ‘windswept Irish poet’, which I really can’t argue with…

As ever, I’d packed the kitchen sink for the shoot, but I ended up completely ignoring the rest of the kit and kept things simple as the light was just wonderful. I was shooting for black and white for the most part, but a few shots demanded to be left in colour to make the most of the sunrise.

So here are a few photos from my morning with the one and only Mr Tim Andrews. Please do check out his rather lovely blog post about the shoot as well as the rest of his ongoing project. Thanks again Tim!