Pallets full of ideas from Monocle

One of my favourite Monocle shoots of the year is the annual Christmas Gift guide, we always have lots of fun sorting through and shooting all the great products the team find for the gift guide.
This year there were quite literally pallet loads to work with. There are some great products in the guide the one I was most tempted by was the new star wars toy the Sphero BB-8 great fun to play around with in a big studio (I’m a bit of a sucker for all things tec and Star Wars!)

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images © David Sykes 2015 All rights reserved.

Stylish Comfort Food

At the beginning of the year myself and Jessica Dance were asked to collaborate on a cover shot for the London sylist magazine.

The theme was Comfort food so we shot Bangers and mash and some beans on toast. The shots looked great and the cover went down very well to the point where it went viral the following week!

Stylist cover

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images © David Sykes 2015 All rights reserved.

Delicious jewellery

Recently I teamed up with food stylist Olivia Bennett to help me finally shoot an idea that I’ve had knocking around for about 5 years now.

It was a great shoot to work on, Olivia’s designs for the Jewellery was fantastic creating recipes that you could wear on a glamorous night out.

I wanted to keep the set and lighting looking like a classic jewellery shoot to help give the view that double take.

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images © David Sykes 2015 All rights reserved.

Life is just a bowl of cherries

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images © David Sykes 2015 All rights reserved.

This is a recent personal project i’ve been working on, I’m fond of a cherry or two so this was always going to be a fun shoot to do.

Cherries are such beautiful fruits, they look the same on mass but on closer inspection they all have a unique look of there own, this also applies when you squish them no two burst in the same way!

I didn’t realize until I started to squish them how juicy they can be.

Hope you enjoy my juicy cherry pictures I’ll be selling prints on my new revamped website which is coming soon……

Mad grand finale

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images © David Sykes 2015 All rights reserved.

Sad that this week see’s the final ever Mad Men, it’s been an amazing series beautiful shot and well written. I look forward to seeing how it all ends with a large old fashion in my hand!

Here are a couple of my Man Men inspired test I’ve done over the years.

Cheer’s

Happy and healthy new year

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images © David Sykes 2015 All rights reserved.

Happy New year to you all, so here we are another year, hope everyone has a happy and prosperous one!

The end of last year was a very busy one work wise, so much so I didn’t get a chance to blog much so after this one I’m going to post all my latest news in a flurry of posts, so i apologies in advance!

So Kale is the latest super food and I was delighted to help promote Florette’s new salad baby kale for the Now agency.

Creative director Lee Smith came up with some great ads and when I saw the layouts I knew they were right up my street.

It was a fun and very healthy shoot with lots of lovely baby kale left over for us all to have lots of very healthy salads in the days that followed!

The finished ads are running now in magazines and on 48 sheet posters. Grab a bag and help that healthy start to the new year 😉

Warming comfort food

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woolly breakfast

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images © David Sykes 2014 All rights reserved.

Can’t believe this is my first post of 2014! It’s been a busy year so far, I became a dad for the first time in November last year so Poppy has been keeping us busy but I’ve also been busy shooting a mix of advertising and editorial shoots and of course plenty of personal projects.
First off I’d like to share one of the personal projects I’ve been working on with the talented Jessica Dance.
We’ve now finish off our woolly faux food series, a woolly full english breakfast and a woolly hotdog these go with the woolly hamburger we shot last year.
It’s been a great project to work on Jess’ attention to detail making the food is fantastic and it’s been great building the environments the food sits in.

A warm and woolly knitmas dinner

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images © David Sykes 2013 All rights reserved.

I’ve recently been working with an amazing model maker and prop stylist, Jessica Dance. Her speciality at the moment is creating objects made of wool.

We’ve been working on a few woolly projects together and whilst shooting our ”Woolly mammals” series both of us mentioned that we wanted to create an image for Christmas.

I love shooting food and I always want people to do a double take with my images and spend some time working out what’s unusual about them. Over the past few years I’ve been creating faux food shots; taking classic food shots and recreating them out of everyday objects. This is where I came up with idea of using Jessica’s fantastic wool craft to turn a traditional turkey Christmas dinner into a woolly feast.

I knew the food Jessica was going to produce would look great but it wasn’t until she brought them round the studio did I realise how beautiful they would be. Some of my favourite pieces are the pigs in blankets, with it’s handmade bacon rashers, and the turkey itself with its perfectly designed drumstick. I wanted the photo, at first glance, to have the feel of a classic food shot, with it slowly revealing its true colours as you realise that something is not quite right. It was quite a challenge to light it and show off all the texture whilst keeping the warm and cosy feel of the wool.

Who’d have thought wool food could make you feel so hungry.

We Loved the final shot so much we decided to make it into a Christmas card to send out to friends and Clients. I wanted a unique greeting for the inside of the cards and came up with the line “Have a warm and woolly Christmas” Which was great, but I also wanted it to have a wool theme. So, I asked Maddy from Vue, who has been wowing me with her excellent typographic illustrations for a while now, to design a illustration for the inside. What she came up with was fantastic, and the card was ready to wing it’s way to our friends and clients.

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image © Madeline Macrae 2013 All rights reserved.

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It’s been a great project to work on and a chance to collaborate with some talented makers!

Hope you all have a warm and woolly Christmas and I look forward to sharing with you all of the new and exciting projects I have lined up in 2014!

Watch this space for more of mine and Jessica’s woolly faux food.

Sweet commission

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images © David Sykes 2013 All rights reserved.

Last month I was asked by Karmarama to shoot their new campaign for Hartley’s jam and jelly. When the layouts came through I was super excited as they wanted to make a type ad but it was to be all made out of their jam and jelly, it was right up my street!
They wanted it to be shot in camera as much as possible, which is just the kind of challenge I like.

I asked Peta O’Brien to help with this challenge. Peta and I have been working together for years, and I knew her extensive experience would be invaluable with a project like this.
Peta came up with an ingenious way to shoot the jam and jelly in one, and we asked model maker Paul Baker to help work out how to make it a reality. I knew that the job was in capable hands and when the forms arrived to fill in the jelly I was super excited, they looked like a work of art before we’d even begun to fill them with jam and jelly.

Hartley’s sent over more jam than I’d ever seen in all my life, but it was all needed, and it took most of the prep day for Peta to fill the mould for the jam.

The actual shoot was lots of fun, a couple of long sweet and sticky days, but it was all worth it as the end result looked fantastic. It was really good to work with such a fun creative team and client, Robin the art director kept us entertained all day.

The big jelly Letters Peta made were amazing, they had a great texture to them, everyone enjoyed playing around with them once we had wrapped (a little too much, as quite a bit ended up stuck to the studio celling!)

The finished ads are out and about in the UK press right now.

Here’s some behind the scenes photos from the shoot.

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images © David Sykes 2013 All rights reserved.

Party’s over

After party

images © David Sykes 2013 All rights reserved.

Recently I was asked by folks over at iGNANT to take part in their on going feature called two of a kind. They ask an Artist and a photographer to take part each time, they send them the same 3 random objects and ask them to create something from them. After looking at the previous entries and their lovely site I jumped at the chance.

So I waited for the package to arrive to find out what objects I would be having to use.
When it finally arrived I opened the box (with some apprehension) to find a pair of rubber gloves a packet of party streamers and a set of wooden utensils.

Recently I have been working with the fantastic Jessica Dance while we were shooting another project I mentioned that I’d been asked to do this and asked if she would like to collaborate with me on this one too. She said yes and came up with a great way to use the objects using the wool technique that we’ve been developing on other projects for a while now.

The end result was the Wooly morning after the night before.

Apologies for a drought in blog posts It’s been a busy few months shooting lots of personal work and commissions more to be revealed soon.

Wood chips

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image © David Sykes 2013 All rights reserved.

I was very lucky to have this beautiful wood burger and chips made for me by my good friend and model maker Wesley west.

He’s a very talented chap and when he said he’d made me the wooden burger I jumped at the chance to use it in a shoot, the hardest thing was deciding how to shoot it!

The proof of the pudding

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All images © David Sykes 2012 All rights reserved.

This Festive season I decided it would be good to create a Christmas inspired shot that I could send out to the people I’ve worked with over the years, so I started to think up ideas and came to the conclusion that everyone loves festive food and presents at christmas so why not combine the two.
That is how I came to create my sock christmas pudding, for those that have followed my work over the years you’ll know that I have liked to create food images but not using food but everyday objects to create faux food.
So I dusted off (and repainted) my giant 4 foot plate and went about creating my giant sock pudding, the pile ended up being 3 foot high and nearly 4 foot wide and Katie Cordell the stylist had to source over a hundred socks.
It took us the best part of a day to create the perfect sock pile and at the end I was tempted to go for the flaming Christmas pud and set fire to them! But I couldn’t as I needed them for the next part of my mailer.
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All images © David Sykes 2012 All rights reserved.

I thought it would be fun to send people one sock from my pudding as a memento and as creative inspiration, I custom made some sock tags with a challenge on them to make the lonely sock into a festive stocking or christmas character. To help them on there way I supplied a starter kit of some fake fur some red and green felt, googly eyes and some buttons. (see below) I’m asking them to send pictures of the results so I’m looking forward to seeing the festive creations.

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All images © David Sykes 2012 All rights reserved.

This will probably be my last post of the year so I’d like to wish everyone a merry christmas and a happy new year thanks for following my blog.

Pick your teeth

All images © David Sykes 2012 All rights reserved.

I found these whilst Halloween shopping. Thought they were such a fangtastic selection of ghoulish teeth I had to shoot them, I decided that they deserved there own halloween alter.
Which one’s would you pick?

Hope everyone has a Happy Halloween of trick or treating this weekend!

Jelly Jubilee

All images © David Sykes 2012 All rights reserved.

I found this jelly mould by Lydia Leith and knew I wanted to do a test shot with it unfortunately I have been so busy I didn’t manage to do it before the jubilee so to wet your appetite I created this more simple shot for the jubilee weekend.