When I mentioned to a good friend that I was about to embark on a redesign for my website he said whatever you do include a blog.
'Errrr OK' I replied.
'But you have to make it ******* interesting otherwise nobody will want to read it', he went on.
So, this first blog attached to my new and totally redesigned website is now live and it revolves around a recent commission for RIBA North which in a way is appropriate considering I shoot architecture amongst other subjects for a living. The new RIBA national architecture centre based at Mann Island on the Liverpool waterfront opens to the public on the 17th June 2017 and I was commissioned to produce an exterior image of the building for a double page spread for Newsweek magazine, social media and for general advertising of this new facility but with just two evenings to turn it around. As it was I shot the image at 9.55pm on the first evening and uploaded to RIBA just after midnight with a disk of the selected images delivered at lunchtime. There are times when our British weather is very kind to me.
Looking at this image my mind was cast back to 2007/8 when shooting the content for a special Liverpool edition for the AJ (Architects Journal) magazine, edited and written by Brian Hatton entitled 'Shifting Tideways - Liverpool's Changing Fortunes' and I reflected how the waterfront and indeed the whole city has changed since then.
In 2007 construction work was just starting on the new Museum of Liverpool (designed by architects 3XN) and the plans for Mann Island by Matt Brook of Broadway Malyan were well advanced. Liverpool One was nearly three years into construction with the first phase due to open in 2008 in time for Liverpool's European Capital of Culture celebrations.
Ten years on, The waterfront work around the pier head is now complete and this month ten cruise ships will be visiting the City. Liverpool Waters, the development of the Northern Docks by Peel Holdings and the new Stadium for Everton FC looks likely to move quickly forward over the next couple of years and one hopes that the planners and architects develop schemes which are as radical and significant in design as Mann island.
The architectural community of the north are going to be spoilt with this new facility with exhibition spaces and the cafe with the attached bookshop is an absolute must!