It is November and I am celebrating.
Diana Patient: Photography has been professional for one year!
Happy Birthday to me,
Happy Birthday to me.
Happy Birthday Diana Patient Photography…
What a journey…
And to mark this first year I have put together a few of my favourite and most memorable photographs so far on my photographic journey with comments from clients, friends and myself.
THE ONE THAT STICKS WITH YOU…
“This photograph is my favorite. Mostly because there is nothing contrived about it- it captures a moment that is raw, pensive and sublime. It’s colours and texture is captivating at first glance and yet one can’t say why immediately. Whilst I was playing in the river, a little apprehensive and shy, she made me forget myself and yet depicted me so vividly. I had no idea she was doing something immense and great.” – AALIA KHAN
“Without a doubt my favourite photograph, ever! I don’t know how you’ve managed to capture the richness of an oil painting on film but the effect is sublime. It’s evocative and dramatic and yet at the same time brilliantly simple. Each time I see it I find something new and wonderful and fall further in love. Truly a timeless work of art.” – CHARLOTTE HAYNES (a friend of Aalia’s who you will see very soon in her own photographs…)
IN THE BEGINNING…AN EARLY CLIENT SHOOT
‘Happy Birthday DPP – keep on spreading the photographic wisdom & beauty’ – ABI GREEN
BALLERINA ON SOUTHBANK
I felt fearless. “Let’s shoot in crowds on Southbank” I said. And we did.
ALL THE FUN OF PRESS PHOTOGRAPHY AT THE DAILY MIRROR
This was Katie Price’s perfume launch. I remember being slightly terrified. It was my first photocall with the Mirror and I walked into the venue to find 40 male photographers (I think they were all dressed in black) with humongous cameras and flashes things I didn’t even recognise attached. I made my way in my pillar box red coat to an empty space and took out my large, but small by comparison camera a little sheepishly. But I need not have worried as soon I was talking to a camera crew from German TV and another female photographer arrived later (press photography really is a male dominated proffession). She was from Sweden. Oh, and someone from Getty Images, I came to realise there is always someone from Getty…
AFTERMATH OF THE STUDENT RIOTS
I was sent to Parliament Square to photograph the damage and chaos left over from the student riots the night before. Who would have guessed we would have had riots again 8 months later with even more catastrophic effects to buildings and people’s homes. There was another photograph I was tempted to add here: an image of window bars twisted, almost beyond recognition, on one of the wondows surrounding Parliament Square. Would have taken quite a lot of effort to contort a window to that extent. Something is stirring in London.
PET SPA OPENING AT HARRODS
Advice I will always remember from the picture desk at the Mirror: “There are many talented photographers out there who don’t get the recognition of some of their more famous colleagues and they are often technically better. But photography is more than this, it is about connecting with people and having charisma to make those around you feel at ease. You got a girl to jump into a river in wedding dress? That’s good.”
“I was a little worried when Diana first came up with the idea of helium balloons for a shoot of me and my brother for my mum’s birthday. I was even more worried when we had to fit 11 balloons in my little Ford KA! But when we got out in the (very cold) wilderness and started shooting, it all came together. Silly me for not trusting Diana’s artistic genius! My mum loves the photos of us running, playing and messing about with the balloons. They really helped us to capture the fun and freedom of our brother sister relationship – LUCY VAN DORP
I remember this portfolio for Alice. WOW. I hadn’t seen these photographs in a while! Sometimes when I see old work I really think help! what was I thinking when I took that? I hope I am a more experienced photographer now! but then other images, like these, I feel quite proud to call it my own. (If you click on the picture a link will take you through to the whole set).
ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS
The Christmas promotion was one of my most favourite shoots. It was so magical in Trafalgar square with all the snow coming down, being close to Chritstmas and just having fun with good friends. We were all joking that Kristina, Anastasia, Dasha and Lucy were Diana Patient: Photography Angels, but they really are! They are my muses. I think a repeat has to happen this Christmas…
THAT DAY IT SNOWED IN TRAFLAGAR SQUARE AND WE MET VICTOR
That day in Trafalgar Square was absolutely incredible: meeting Victor [male model] that day. And it all happened in the snow… – ANASTASIA KHRYPACH
PIGEONS IN THE PRESS
I remember this day so vividly. It was late afternoon, just before the student riots, and I had been sent out by the Daily Mirror to take some photographs of the sunset reflecting off Canary Wharf from Tower Bridge. I had strict instructions to get back home before a certain time because the riots were likely to turn nasty (which they did).
There were road works and no glorious sunset that day. I didn’t get my picture and I was feeling bad and, I have to say quite, lonely. Yes it was great to be involved with a national newspaper but I didn’t realise how much travelling, waiting and wandering a press photographer would do alone. I kept checking the time and I needed to get back soon. I decided to go home defeated. The sun was low and I packed up my camera and headed to the north bank over Tower Bridge.
And then I saw the pigeons. I have always loved pigeons and it was so reassuring to see them now but I had never seen them like this. They flew up into the air hovered forming cross shapes shaped by the yellow sun: they looked almost biblical. I took out my camera and produced some of my favourite shots.
Wedding Shadowing for the amazing Andy Kimpton. On this occasion I made friends with the chauffeur, he made my day! He was great but rather a reluctant model. Here he held the bride’s veil hoping he wasn’t in the shot. One of my favourite behind-the-scenes shots ever! Haha!
ALBUM COVERS AND BEAUTIFUL SINGER/SONGWRITERS
A shoot with the lovely Nina Schofield back in March eventually led to one of our photographs gracing her EP cover. I remember travelling with my iPod to Italy listening to one of her songs and smiling when I saw my picture there in the cover art: great feeling!
Looking forward to dabbling in music photography great band and another composer this year.
“Diana, I have to admit, I am your big fan and ALL the shoots done by you were absolutely stunning!!!!
You’re my favourite photographer!!! Many happy returns!” – DASHA NIKITINA
“Happy Birthday Diana Patient Photography!
My first encounter with Diana and her camera was at my 20s birthday party. Ever since then my facebook profile pictures were all taken by Diana Patient. You know how when you look in the mirror in the morning and you think oh it’s not that bad today, but then later that day someone takes a picture of you, and when you look at it you go oh god, how deeply was I mistaken…Well with Diana Patient´s photos it´s completely the opposite. She can make you look beautiful and interesting even if you have a “bad hair” day. I gotta admit that I am not completely altruistic when Diana Patient asks me to help her with a photoshoot. Of course I do it because I love her and she is an amazing person, but I also have a different motif, that is to have some pretty pictures of myself hihi.
But Diana Patient´s photography is about much more than just “looking beautiful”. Diana is an artist. She is adventurous and versatile. She has a great imagination and what is more important she can make her and her clients visions come alive. She can capture feelings, motions and grace in such way, that no one remains untouched and I am looking forward to see more of her work in the future” – KRISTINA SVIBOVA
SOMETHING FOR OTHERS
I was very honoured to photograph Dance For Japan and had great fun photographing Ballet Black, Wayne Sleep and Designed By Alice for such a good cause.
ALL ABOUT ME
The first time I blogged one of my self-portrait shoots I think I only put up one image out of hundreds. OK, granted, I seem to take pictures that I’m never sure would be decent to display on the internet. I like naturalness above all and think skin is the best item of clothing. So you can see my predicament is I don’t want to flash those who would rather not see. However, away from nudity problems, I love self-portraits for the control and the perfect precision the artist can execute while doing it. Look at Alex Stoddard, Any Warhol and Cindy Sherman. Genius.
I love the sea. I think it is my favourite place to shoot so when my client, the lovely Phoebe, agreed to do a shoot by the sea I knew I would fall in love with the resulting photographs. We travelled down to Dorset, trekked barefoot with heavy camera equiptment across the hottest stone beach I have ever laid my feet on and then shot for hours. With the absense of makeup, her long hair and the sea I can’t help but feel bewitched when looking at these photographs again and again. Great feeling.
THE ROYAL WEDDING WITH STEVE
“We [Diana and I] decided we wanted to watch the wedding up close and personal, and prepared for a road trip we will never forget — we camped out at Westminster Abbey. We arrived some 10 hours before the ceremony started, but the carnival atmosphere was already in full swing. Campers played the drums, the ukulele, cards, chanting out, and singing God Save the Queen. Unsurprisingly, the Met Police appeared to have replaced their scary officers who hit students with friendly ones posing for pictures.
Delighted to have any toe-hold SW1 real estate, we settled for a spot away from the Abbey. We survived on Tesco products that night, and were rudely woken up by a policeman at 5am as we were on the verge of sleeping. We crawled outside and I encountered a group of Spanish students trying to sing Elton John, a swaying drunk mumbling “only 5 hours to go”, beeping cars, a helicopter, and a groups of hiding snipers all over the rooftops. I slept again halfway, without realising a Frenchwoman filmed me.”
“After standing around for 5 hours, the processions began and started snapping all the way! But, wow. They are quite the reserved lot, the British, but they go for it, they really go for it. It was pure elegance and aesthetics! The day ended at around 5pm and we were extremely exhausted. The service was relayed outside the Abbey via half-decent speakers, and I saw this Japanese student started taking pictures of the trees. We even caught a glimpse of the bride!”
“Yes, we were “crazy”, but it didn’t matter. We did something our pundits can’t do. It was great and gosh, I still couldn’t believe I went through this with Diana! It’s not about remembering days, but remembering moments — this will be my diary that I’ll always carry with me. Happy Birthday, Diana Patient: Photography!” – STEVE TAN, Lonely Planet.
N.B. I still haven’t blogged all the Royal Wedding Photographs I took! So bad!
SO I TRAVELLED AND I WROTE AND I PHOTOGRAPHED…
‘You almost show Leuven better than it actually is’ – Olivia Broes, Dweller of Leuven.
THE QUICK SNAPS
The photographs when you are having fun and not thinking too much about can be the best. My little cousin and I were mucking around in a field full of dandelion clocks with a bike at Easter and we got some great shots. Love them.
GYPSIES AND TRAVELLERS
This is one of my favourite pictures. It conjures up images of strength, nature and freedom. Appleby Horse Fair left me hungry. More cultures to explore, more photographs outside caravans surrounded by moving voices please… World, take me out of my comfort zone.
DREAMS OF RAIN
This was a personal project that I thought of when my sunny shoot was cancelled that week. I had always wanted to do something in the rain and this was the time. It was about creating and capturing that moment when people realise that it is about to rain on them. The style was street photography from the 1940s mixed with pantomime and ballet (shown in the exaggerated movements). I’m really proud of these shots.
Yes you saw this beauty before… Alice has been a loyal client from when I first took photographs of her back in 2009. We have a really strong relationship and it doesn’t feel like work when we have a shoot together. Our projects have grown and become even more exciting over the years. This is from our day shooting with gorgeous low sun in St. James Park with lots of beautiful clothes from People Tree and vintage shops!
‘To my lovely and beautiful Diana, happy birthday! I will hope you have a great one and that all your dreams come true! Love you! Shan xxx
It always made sense to me that I did English Literature and Creative Writing before picking up art again the other side of my degree. I remember telling my A-Level art teacher that “Stories inspired me and I needed to know more stories.” I always include narrative in my work but this shoot was a more obvious marriage of photography and storytelling. These photographs have not been released yet. Waiting for the perfect time to reveal (with permission and patience from my client, thankyou!)
SELF-PORTRAIT WORK TO ANOTHER LEVEL
Most exciting shoot ever. In Italy, with beautiful dresses made for me by a talented designer and just me and my camera painting pictures…
FASHION IN A FLAT
‘Niall and Anastasia dressed as kids rummaging mummy’s room! Fab.’ – STEPHANIE ZINATI, DESIGNER.
‘THE EYEBROWS’ – DASHA NIKITINA
WEDDING IN VENICE
“Ask Diana for one of her photographs signed by her.”
“OKaaay, I’ll ask her. Why?”
“Because I predict she will be famous”
Happy Birthday Diana Patient: Photography!
– The Happy Couple
KAWA BRASS BAND AND CIRCUS, BESTIVAL.
This weekend was great. Photographing one of the most amazing gypsy brass bands in India, buzzing festival atmosphere and a wristband that said “Artist”. Sounds pretty sad, but I really felt like I’d made it, haha! Even got to go backstage for The Cure. This photograph was one of the quieter moments on the first day when we travelled from the campsite up to the main stages and that smile was on every one of my companions faces the whole weekend. Pretty awesome.
PRODUCTS, PRODUCTS, PRODUCTS…
I love the light here and the house I shot in was BEAUTIFUL! I did not initially imagine that this would be my thing, but there is always one shoot that changes your mind and this happened at Cosy Glimpse. I am now looking forward to shooting a campaign for a new English interior company in January: working with what I know but applying it to products, can’t wait!
PASSING ON THE KNOWLEDGE
I didn’t realise how much I had learnt until this point. I had arranged a model and shoot for a group of 6th formers with their teacher. They asked me questions about photographs and cameras and the answers came out of nowhere and I didn’t remember learning them. I realised a lot about my journey and self that day.
Pictured above is an outtake from the day!
I love these haunting pictures from my shoot with the two dancers from Rambert who needed portfolios. Just proves a year on and I have found that work still doesn’t have to really feel like work.
So that concludes my year in pictures I hope you enjoyed it.
I want to say a big thank you to everyone who has been there for me over the last year and before. I’ve felt the full meaning of the phrase “I could not have done it without you.”
Thank you to those who supported, thank you to my clients who believed in a newcomer and thank you strangers and friends for your kind words.
Here is to another year filled with hard work, art and adventure.
…Happy Birthday to me!
All images copyright of Diana Patient. You can find the sets that these images belong to on my blog and facebook page.