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Tom Crawford
Registered: 24/05/2012   Last Update: 24/05/2012
I was hatched in Bideford, North Devon in 1964. My professional photographic career began in 1990 in London, when I gave up playing bass guitar after many years in bands. Rather than just sit around picking my nose I went back to my passion which had always been photography.

Right place right time, I had my first exhibition in Kensington almost immediately, which was a mixture of my work to date. This lead to me being employed to do some private medical photography which opened many avenues (and bodies) along the way and the opportunity for more exhibitions. One day I could be on a film set photographing stills, the next I could be taking pictures of restaurant interiors and back in an operating theatre with a lens inside someones tummy, all before a coffee break! Life was never dull but it was hectic and I was fortunate enough to meet lots of interesting people along the way, some of whom inspired me in what I do now.

1998 involved a big lifestyle change, moving out of London to the historical town of Battle in East Sussex. This afforded a better quality of life for me as sucking in car fumes had lost it‘s appeal by now. I gave up most of my ties in London, including photography at the level to which I had previously been working.

2003 saw a change in direction that had long term effects for good and bad. Now working on articles and photography for a Smart car magazine, I was travelling around the UK a lot and while on one particilar project formed Spotty Badger Productions. This name came to mind due to the love of a song by a band called the 'Naked Apes' and a particular line in it which lead to me being nicknamed Lord Badger for many years within the Smart car fraternity and at this point I should also add, while drinking a very strong Belgian beer.

At one Smart car event I was attending in 2004 I was involved in an accident as a passenger, which left me with epilepsy - this has had a major impact on my work and how I see life and study it. I tend to see colours far brighter and denser when close to seizures or immediately after, which mean I can produce photographs with much more intensity than I normally would. I have been told that this is very noticable in my work. The Smart car involvement led to me being asked to co write a book and do all of the photography, this took up a good two years of my life maybe not so smart! As I failed every English exam at school heaven knows how I got away with that one!

2008 was a turning point with the exhibitions as I was invited to go to Italy with 24 photographs. These were shown in the picturesque town of Tortona, some of them taken of the local area and all in half colour and black and white. I can still to this day order a coffee and ask for an ash tray in Italian! This style of work is something that I enjoy, bringing the colour through on the black and white, affording small details poignancy I feel gives the picture impact - This means a single image can take up to a week or more to complete. Though time consuming this style of photography is all engrossing to work on and part of the enjoyment is looking for an image to start with that might work.

Also around 2008 I was asked by a promotions company 'Mrs Yarringtons Emporium' great name! ... to photograph bands they were promoting in Battle, such as Wilko Johnson, Glenn Tilbrook, Waking the Witch and The Hamsters ... leading me full circle back to my love of music. At this point I should mention that the 60's MOD culture and its music has played a big part in my life and therefore some of my works - I do not hide that fact or the influences from my early punk days. I hasten to add that I do not spit or pogo on the prints! Many things can inspire me and I guess never fully growing up helps - if you can still look at the world through a childs eyes all the things that were innocent are still there, just mixed with the polluted adult world.

As this goes to press I am working with Waterstone Guitars U.S.A . Just got back from a tour of Italy with Fay Hallam photographing there tour dates and about to start on her next album cover. July and August 2012 will be taken up with large solo exhibitions while doing special one off music nights, DJing at both. July find me at Shoreham Airport, West Sussex and August The Lime Cafe, at St Pauls, Worthing West Sussex


What’s next? ..... If I can turn humble peppers into a pornographic photograph then who knows, watch this site!