Archive for the ‘Event’ Category

Quantum Care Awards – 2009


I had the great pleasure of covering this year’s Quantum Care Awards ceremony which took place at the Holiday Inn in Borehamwood. It was a rather pucker event with around 250 guests, a number of speakers and sponsors and a special guest star appearance by Shirlie Kemp.

This was a long event with a very busy schedule that had to run very smoothly simply to get through all the material and awards without extending the structured sections too far into the night and the brief I was given was very clear that there could be no delay in the proceedings. This meant that those receiving awards were not going to be asked to wait and pose on stage for their photograph to be taken. Normally this only takes a few short seconds but at this event those seconds would soon add up.

To get the required photographs of the award winners and runners up I was asked to extend the photography team and provide a temporary studio in an adjoining room so that posed photographs could be taken after each award. Winners would be lead to the studio and photographed without slowing down the proceedings in the main event hall. Print on the day services were also to be included which we staged in the same area.

Fellow photographer Chris Hawkes, aided by my lovely assistant, stepped up to the plate and did a magnificent job of that part of the proceedings while I covered the main event in the hall.

None of us got away before 2am.

This was a really special event and it was clear to me that the effort involved in its organisation was nothing short of epic. Debbie, Sarah and Caroline were largely responsible for its planning and I would post a photograph of the lovely three but I suspect they’d never forgive me for it.

Shirlie Kemp

I had the great pleasure of photographing this year’s Quantum Care awards ceremony which took place on Friday night. I’ll be posting about the assignment another time but I thought I’d quickly put up this photograph of the lovely Shirlie Kemp of Wham! fame. She was presenting some of the awards to the magnificent carers who were recognised for all the hard work they put into caring for residents.


Shirlie was a real star on the night, giving up her time for a charitable event in a similar manner to Tony Hadley of Spandau Ballet. Shirlie is married to Martin Kemp, also of Spandau Ballet so my assignments seem to have lead me on some kind of weird and indirect photo tour of the band.

Park Street Primary School – charitable football match

I had the great pleasure, in association with fellow photographer Chris Hawkes, to photograph the Arsenal FC Ex-Professional & Celebrity v Park Street Primary School Dads charity football match yesterday. The match took place at the London Colney Football club and was a great success. I won’t mention the score line but I will mention how fantastic all the players, organisers and celebrities were on the day.

Many hundreds of photographs were taken during the day and a number of visitors took away prints of the occasion.

From a personal perspective I found the level of fitness shown by the Park Street dads and the celebrities remarkable. As a case in point, here’s Tony Hadley from Spandau Ballet chasing down the ball. He didn’t stop all day.

Tony Hadley

Contact details:
MakingImages – Photography by John Joannides
t: 07976 651133

Gold Care Homes photography

Last week we covered the annual care award ceremony for Gold Care Homes, one of our corporate clients who run a number quality care facilities in the south east of England.


The awards were held at the Bush Hall hotel in Mill Green, Hatfield which was an excellent venue for the ceremony, particularly the dining area which sported a magnificently adorned marquee roof.


There were lots of happy, smiling faces and quite a few award presentations in recognition of the excellent work put in over the year by a number of the carers at Gold Care.

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We’ve done quite a bit of work over the past year for Gold Care ranging from interior photography for all of their facilities to event work like this.

We’ve even covered the good work done by their chefs.


Images – Harpenden Classics on the Common 2008

If I had a stick, a very big one, and if I had the mind to shake it at all the classic cars at this year’s classics on the common event in Harpenden the stick would have felt completely inadequate. There were what felt like an infinite number of cars, with infinite variety, though I suspect that’s just my aching legs talking.

This year’s event was a special one as one of the driving forces behind it, Peter Madden, has been named as the 2008 Meguiar’s ‘UK Car Enthusiast of the Year’. Deservedly so I think.

Photographing the cars at this kind of event is a little problematic as the number of visitors and the number of exhibitors makes it virtually impossible to photograph anything without there being people and other cars in shot. I mean, just look:


Unless the idea is to create documentary images, it can be very frustrating. Basically, the choice is to either to frame the shot and hope you get a fraction of a second when luck smiles upon you, or forget about shooting the whole of the car. I tried a bit of both.

This year I turned up relatively early and was greeted with the most spectacular convertible Ford Zephyr.


I had a good long chat with Terry, the owner, including a guided tour of the machine. Not just any ordinary Zephyr this one. It just may well be the last surviving original example. It also has a somewhat glamorous history; it was once owned by the bass guitarist of the Shadows, it starred in a number of commercial ventures and is soon to feature in the up and coming film Telstar. As Terry walked me around the car I couldn’t help admire all the work that has gone into it. It’s the same feeling I get at all these events. If it wasn’t for the dedication and, I suppose, the obsession of owners like Terry cars like this would have been consigned to a few old photographs and a breakers yard.

Talking of films:


I had a chat with the sound man, who was standing nearby with one of those squirrels on a stick. The crew, a British one, were filming the event for a TV program called Car Crazy (this one perhaps). It won’t be shown in the UK but is intended for the exclusive consumption of our American cousins. “It’s a very English affair” I said. “All we need now is some people eating cucumber sandwiches”, he replied.

Did I mention there was cricket:


One of my favourite marques is Triumph and I’ve been a Triumph owner for decades. There were quite a few of them there including this TR4 A:



It’s about at this point that the event was overwhelmed with people and, even though I was sure that there wasn’t a free patch of ground available anywhere, exhibitors were still turning up:


I had a good twenty minutes to get from the centre of the event to the side of the road to take that shot. You can hear an AC Cobra coming from miles away.

I had a good chat with the owner of every car that I shot, unless I couldn’t find them, which is always a great part of covering an event like this. They all have a story to tell, particularly the lovely lady who turned up in a mini which was sporting a Rover V8 engine under the hood …. and in the front passenger compartment. By this stage I had pretty much given up hope of shooting a whole car for the rest of the day. People, people everywhere.

I gravitated toward a beautiful black Jaguar E-Type and got chatting with her equally beautiful owner. She imported the car from California and her husband had rebuilt the engine … in the kitchen I think.

Click here for a larger image.

“It must be great to have someone around that’s so handy with mechanics”, I said. “I never see him”, she replied. I think she was joking.

Click here for a larger image.

The thing about E-types is no matter where you point your lens, there’s something beautiful to photograph.

The rest of the day was spent in enjoying even more automotive splendor.

Rolls Royce grill and lights
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Bentley dash
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Chevrolet Fleetline grill and light
Click here for a larger image.

There’s something special about the Harpenden event. There are no competitions, no separate classes, no wandering judges, just a whole heap of wonderful cars and a huge number of people.

All that remains is to congratulate all the people involved in organizing the event. It was spiffing.

Note to editors: MakingImages has a stock archive of images from the 2008 Classics on the Common event. Please contact us to discuss your image needs.

Contact details:
MakingImages – Photography by John Joannides
t: 07976 651133

Today is the day: Harpenden Classics on the Common

So the day has arrived, the weather looks great and I’m ready to go.

It’s often a problem deciding what kit to bring on an occasion like this. I’ll be on foot for the day so I’ve decided not to bring the Slingshot bag, good as it is. I just don’t fancy lugging the thing around on my back, particularly through the expected crowds.

I’ve decided to take a belt held drop bag instead and two camera bodies, one fitted with my walkabout Nikon 18-200mm VR lens and another with my wide angle Sigma 10-20mm lens for the crowd shots. I’ll also be bringing my SB800 flash, just in case I need some fill light. I just need to find a place to hang it as I don’t want it on the camera all day.

Anyhow, into town soon. Hope to see some great motors. I’m sure I won’t be disappointed.

Harpenden Classics on the Common

I’m a big classic car fan and still have my beloved black Triumph Spitfire, though she is in need of some significant attention given that she’s been garaged for the last six or so years. That, and the photography aspect, is why I generally get a little excited when the annual Harpenden Classics on the Common event comes around.

This year the event is to be held on Wednesday 30th July and I believe that the cars start assembling on the common from 4pm onwards.

There are no spectator fees and I would thoroughly recommend a visit.

Zoom, Zoom.

Cars I’m particularly looking forward to photographing are any AC Cobra variety (generally speaking kits these days) and anything Triumph with a particular glint in my lens for a lovely red TR6 or a champaign white Vitesse.

UPDATE: Images and short editorial are now available here.

Harpenden Carnival 2008

Well, the Harpenden Carnival was a great success. There was a massive turnout and the weather was just great (unlike this bank holiday, which I was going to spend photographing a jousting tournament). Here’s a taster of what the high street looked like:




Once again, and this seems like a requirement for the carnival these days, the experience of the arena in Rothamsted Park was somewhat tainted by the quality of the public address system. A whole lot of noise and a narrow dynamic range……the performers, on the other hand, were great.

I tried to get some shots of the new air ambulance that was due to land in the park but it was out on call and after an hour and a half of waiting I had no choice but to admit that I could no longer ignore the family glares.

Lions, dragons and mad bikers

Well, the time has come for another Harpenden Carnival. On Sunday the 18th of May the high street will be temporarily closed and the fun and games will begin with a parade and end with a free-for-all in Rothamsted Park. It’s a great day out and I intend to be there in my photographer capacity for the first time, rather than as a good husband and father.

This year the carnival seems to offer a great deal from the photographic perspective. The theme is “China Town” (something to do with the Olympics I think) and the Nam Yang Pugilistic Association will be there. I’m particularly looking forward to the Chinese Southern Shaolin Lion Dance & Dragon Dancing. Yup, lions and dragons. Together. Freely associating with each other and dancing.

Not satisfied with letting loose dragons and lions on the residents of Harpenden, the organizers have graciously invited this lot. Yup, THE GLOBE OF DEATH!

Photographing the mad bikers will probably be tricky, what with all that steel mesh in the way, but you never know. Lions, dragons and mad bikers. Anything could happen.