John Blakemore

John Blakemore is a British photographer, known for his black and white documentary, landscape and still life photographs.

Born in 1936 in Coventry, Blackmore first began taking photographs in Tripoli while serving in the air force for his National Service. He went on to teach at the University of Derby for over thirty years.

These detailed photographs were created in the studio using natural light and are composed out of items found in the ground. Blakemore used a large 10 x 8 camera and used multiple exposures to layer the items on top of one another.

John Blakemore
John Blakemore

An archive of his work is now available at the Central Library in Birmingham.

In College this week we used Blakemore as inspiration to create our own still life layered image.

We used one studio light behind our subject in place of natural daylight and lit it from the front using a reflector or mirror. First we photographed a tray of soil, then added items and photographed it again, finally merging the two images together in Photoshop and converting the final image to black and white.


Now that I’ve seen the two images merged together I realise just how much more I could fit into the frame. I’ve cropped in to make the images square to exclude some of the other ‘dead space’ but also because we are trying to create something more contemporary I thought this reflected the modern trend for square Instagram type images. Perhaps I could have added another layer of items in order to compact the frame a little more.

My Blakemore Style Image
My Blakemore Style Image 2