Photographer Siân Davey recently worked with our print and framing experts, using Metro’s premier bespoke service, to produce digital C type prints in walnut frames for her current exhibition “We Are Family” which is showing at the National Portrait Gallery in London until October 7th.
As a photographer with a previous 15-year career in psychotherapy, Siân Davey’s work often investigates the psychological landscapes of both herself and those around her – family and community are central to her practice.
We Are Family is no exception and her series of images portray the diversity and reality of British family life in 2017; photographs were taken over a month-long period across every region of the UK, from Devon to London, the Midlands and Yorkshire to Scotland’s Hebrides.
They examine the ways in which we form a family, how we rely on one, the responsibilities and sacrifices families entail, the unique, integral things they provide – and how such dynamics coalesce around food and mealtime, photographing thirty-one families of all shapes and sizes in twenty-one days.
Siân comments: “In Ancient Greece, scholars wrote on a palimpest – a piece of parchment used again and again. The word literally means ‘again rubbed smooth’. The parchment was never entirely cleaned, so traces of its history always remained, merging with the new.
“The place we share food – a grand dinner table, a sofa, a bed, or a rug on the floor – is a palimpsest. Countless memories, moments, thoughts and experiences have been exchanged here.
“Yet each of us are palimpsests too. We are the evidence of the generations before us, the culmination of everything up to this moment.
“Every time we come together, we play witness to that. We bring our history to the table. The photographs here are a celebration of diversity. But, more importantly, they are a celebration of love – of togetherness, no matter what.”
We Are Family showing at
Print Shop Gallery, National Portrait Gallery, St Martin’s Place, London WC2H 0HE
Exhibition dates: 21st September – 7th October 2017
Opening times: Sunday – Wednesday: 10:00am – 6:00pm; Thursday & Friday: 10:00am – 9:00pm
Images © Siân Davey
Metro combine Metro Imaging and Metroprint in one great new website!
Metro has been supporting Portrait Salon since its inception in 2011, as this year’s submission date looms we grabbed a few minutes to speak to co-founder Carole Evans to find out a little more about the background of this highly successful exhibition which was founded off the back of rejected works from National Portrait Gallery’s Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize, one of the most prestigious photography prizes in the world.
Q. What can we expect from this year’s Portrait Salon?
A. This year Portrait Salon will be exhibited outside, again in an aim to take photography away from the white walls of a gallery and make it accessible to all. Full details will be released very soon!
Q. Do you feel the addition of digital entries in the Taylor Wessing Portrait Prize entry system has affected the Portrait Salon entries?
A. It is too early to say – our submission deadline is not till the 11th September, so we won’t know how much it has been affected till then really.
Q. Has your original concept, inspiration or ultimate desire for Portrait Salon changed much since yourself and James O’Jenkins founded it in 2011?
A. The idea was to show more portraits than the ones chosen by Taylor Wessing, as we were sure there were some other great ones out there. This concept has not changed; this is till our aim. I think what has developed over the years is the method of curating the shows and displaying the work; we really enjoy experimenting with various outputs, and like the challenge of displaying photography in a very demographic way.
Q. What do you most enjoy or benefit from by working with Metro Imaging?
A. We love working with Metro! I think we benefit from the reputation Metro has within the photographic community; it’s great to be endorsed by an organisation as popular as Metro, while it also adds to our reach. We also like the way Metro embrace new ideas and really try and push the boundaries of printing and display; I think in this we are well matched!
Keep your eyes peeled, as we will be posting updates in the coming months. In the meantime important dates for your diary:
11th September 2017: Portrait Salon submission window closes
6th October 2017: Portrait Salon notifies photographers of selection decision
16th November 2017: Portrait Salon outdoor exhibition night.
Images © Portrait Salon 2016
1. Phil Sharp
2. Mark Richards
3. Annika Haas
With over 37 years of experience working within the visual arts industry Metro prides itself on the creative experts that make up our diverse team- from print technicians and retouchers to framers, scanners and client care – what our team don’t know about photography and print production just isn’t worth knowing!
This week’s tips come from one of our expert senior print technicians –the infamous Mr. Manish Patel. He shares his advice with us on preparing your files to get the best for your photographic or art prints using our in-lab Bespoke Services.
1. Don’t sharpen or crop any aspect of your image file until you have decided on the final print size, it could limit the size you can go to if you start tweaking before this.
2. If using RAW files save the .xmp (which can be done in LightRoom or Photoshop), so when we open your files in the lab we can work on your edited or layered file accordingly.
3. Leave time for testing. You may think you just need to print the files straight to your ‘go to paper’, but we have such a variety of photographic and fine art papers at Metro that experimenting with different substrates could open up a whole new element to your work.
4. Don’t hesitate to come in and view your work on our calibrated screens with a print technician, we’re here to help you get the best from your image files.
5. FYI most of us printers love Rum 😉
Metro are delighted to support SELF, the second exhibition in a photographic series which examines identity, self image and disability and sets out to show the human face of social care – colourful, bright and engaging – in sharp contrast to the negative narrative of budget cuts and negligence so often portrayed in the media.
Fashion, lifestyle and portrait photographer Dean Belcher has worked alongside Jake Meyer, Certitude Community Development Manager after seeing the first SELF exhibition which took place in Brixton earlier this year.
Dean commented; “I wanted to be involved with this project because I see how social care is portrayed in the media – it feels good to offer up a different side to this story with these diverse portraits.”
The exhibition features 100 A3 Digital C-type images of individuals from Hounslow who are either connected with Certitude, an award winning social care provider supporting people with learning disabilities and mental health needs, or with activities offered by Age UK at Montague Hall.
Jake Meyer who developed the initial concept for the project explained; “First and foremost this is a show about community. Dean and I wanted the photographs to illustrate the extraordinary diversity of people living in Hounslow and put real faces to the concept of “social care”. The portraits tell us something about how people see themselves and the commonalities that we all share. We all have a face which we can be identified by, we all have insecurities and opinions of ourselves and both of these factors help us to relate to one another. The aim is to promote a sense of inclusion and belonging for everyone involved.”
As well as having their portraits taken, people who took part were asked how they would describe themselves and to divulge something about themselves that the viewer might not realise from their portrait. Some of these thought-provoking responses will be displayed in the exhibition as quotes on the walls.
Self – Portraits in Social Care: Montague Hall, 30 Montague Rd, Hounslow TW3 1LD
Exhibition dates: 15th – 28th September 2017
Opening times: 3:00pm – 5:00pm
For viewing outside these times please contact Certitude
Images © Dean Belcher