I'd photographed Emily in Lincoln recently. I asked her to write a few words about the shoot and more importantly why she needed professional photographs of herself.
This is what she had to say.
"As part of my work, I sometimes have bylined articles placed in various publications online and in print. In many cases, the editor will ask for a picture to accompany the piece. It's also kind of expected that I have a decent(ish) pic on my website and social media profiles, so a small stock of professional photographs of myself is a must.
As such, I'd been meaning to sort out a shoot for some time but for one small problem: I hate having my picture taken. I really do freeze, then skew my mouth into a crazy shape and manage to roll my eyes back, exorcist-style just as the shutter clicks. But needs must, so despite my dread, I'd been keeping an eye out for a good photographer.
Michael's name kept cropping up so I had a look at his portfolio. What convinced me to book with him was the natural expression on the faces on a number of his subjects. They seemed relaxed and genuine, so I figured maybe he could get me to look less like a frightened rabbit.
By the day of the shoot, we'd already had a few chats, so he was forewarned about my severe lack of modelling skills. We headed to uphill Lincoln and retreated from the icy fog for a coffee. When we went back outside, the situation hadn't improved. In fact, it was foggier and colder, so we decided to go to my village in the hope that the conditions would be better - they were.
As we trundled about finding interesting backgrounds to shoot against, I had almost forgotten I was about to have my most unflattering facial expressions immortalized on film. Except, it didn't happen that way - Mike put me entirely at ease. He got me smiling and laughing in a natural way and, to my surprise, was soon showing me shots that actually looked like me. Even more surprising, I was enjoying myself.
Mikey has a great eye for locations and the final pictures all have a little of the character of the village I grew up in. The stone walls, greenery, Victorian doorways and church arches all make for something a bit different. I don't think I look awkward in my pics (you may disagree!) and I don't think I look like I'm trying to be a 'model'. I think I just look like me, and anyone who's tried to photograph me before will know that's not an easy thing to achieve."
Director of Emily Cagle Communications