NEW! England development synchro squad 2014  ...view gallery

The Engand TID synchro squad in action back in April 2014 at Ponds Forge ISC.
Bristol & Birmingham synchro clubs  ...view gallery on YouTube

A photo video gallery (on YouTube) containing a selection of some of the shots I took down in Bristol and Birmingham. The Bristol shoot was a challenge - as we had to cope with swimmers powering up and down in the lane next to me as I was underwater trying to take the shots! My background also decided to fall over just before the swimmers arrived for the shoot...

For the Birmingham shoot the girls had to balance on four starting blocks we put underwater in the shallow pool and covered with my black backdrop. Problem was the blocks weren't level (they wobbled badly!) so it was a real test of the girls' balance.
Genevieve Randall photo shoot

A photo book, with images taken from the shoot we did with one of the new members of the GBR synchronised swimming team - 15 year old Genevieve Randall. Technically this was one of the hardest shoots I've done, involving a submerged platform and floating light stands!

                         
2013 British Synchro Championships  ...view gallery

Worked two cameras for this shoot. One camera was positioned just below the water surface and triggered remotely every time I took a shot with another camera I was holding on poolside. Once the underwater camera was in place and set-up I couldn't touch it again until the end of the competition, so there was a lot of 'hope and pray' - but in the end it worked well.
City of Leeds Synchro Club underwater  ...view gallery

Made use of the incredible Ponds Forge diving pool (deepest in Europe) for this experimental shoot with Leeds synchro. My lights floated on the water surface using car inner tubes and were triggered using fibre optic (and a bit of luck ;)
Canadian Olympic Synchro Team  ...view gallery

Behind-the-scenes, underwater and action shots of the Canadian team training in Ponds Forge for London 2012 the week before they competed. I had to take the opportunity to photograph them whilst they were in my home city - too good an opportunity to miss! My  thanks to Synchro Canada and Ponds Forge.

You can also see the video by pullbuoy.co.uk of the photo exhibition HERE
City of Leeds Synchro Club  ...view gallery

A 'dance in water' themed photo shoot for the club. Some information about Leeds Synchro:

"Formed in April 2008 by Ian Watson (founder of both Pudsey Pearls and Leeds Kingfishers) and Fiona Blackstone (Coach), the club's mission is to assemble the best competitive swimmers from Yorkshire and the North East in order to compete against the nation's established competitive clubs. Their goal is to create a centre of excellence for synchronised swimming in Leeds at the John Charles Centre for Sport.

"By entering only National and International tournaments their aim is to promote the sport in Leeds and encourage swimmers to take up the sport in one of the many feeder clubs; such as the Pudsey Pearls, Halifax Synchro, Leeds Kingfishers, Borough of Kirklees or Gateshead Synchro. The club was formed on a feeder club system - the brainchild of Ian Watson who Chairs the club. Not only does Ian coach at the club, but he also regularly volunteers as a timekeeper at regional and national events, and this was rewarded by his selection as an Official Timekeeper for the London Olympics in 2012."


This gallery is dedicated to Ian Watson and all the other hard-working volunteers at the club.     
LEN Synchro Champions Cup 2011  ...view  gallery

Action shots in a bit of a random order from the team and duet finals.

You can see the video photo montage we did for the GB team ahead of the competition on YouTube. Click logo below to view...

   


               
Rugby Synchronised Swimming Club  ...view gallery
  
A little something about the club from their head coach, Hannah Dudley:

"Rugby SC Synchro is a small club with big ambition and a big family environment.

"We have an amazing workforce of volunteers who help to run the club and make it what it is. Because we have a wide range of ages and abilities within the club we attempt to cater for all."
GB Synchronised Swimming Squad  ...view gallery
  
Some of the images from the photoshoot in December ahead of the LEN European Cup being held at Sheffield's Ponds Forge in May 2011. Good luck GB!

Read what happened when a group of contemporary dancers visited the GB squad in Aldershot to explore the difference between dance and synchro  ...VIEW THEIR BLOG

And here's a shot I took of the GB synchro duet Jenna Randall and Olivia Allison used by the Swimming Times in June 2011...


                             
England Talent Development Synchro Squad  ...view gallery

We did this photo shoot straight after their extremely hard and intensive training week in Manchester - but despite being very tired they put absolutely everything into it, which you can see in the photos. During the photo shoot we pretended the MAC pool was a rehearsal studio in a ballet school with a big window to one side (where I put my camera lights). Then we asked the girls to imagine they were there doing ballet and they did the rest... stunning.

I'm hoping to show some of these photos at the LEN European long course champs in Budapest next month, where there will be a GBswimstars exhibition (if all goes according to plan!). Good luck to the team at the Comen Cup.
Trafford Synchronised Swimming Club  ...view gallery

Wonderful club and really nice people.


GB Synchronised Swimming Team  ...view gallery

A photo shoot with the team - all except Jenna Randall - at their training pool in Aldershot.

I can't feel my legs from having to do so much 'egg beater' kick in the water as I was taking the photos... although the GB girls did give me a few polite (but not entirely truthful) compliments about my technique. Less of an egg beater, more of an egg whisker :)

I witnessed some pretty amazing and very intense training. For example, 25m butterfly immediately followed by 25m underwater swim, then the same again, and again, and again..! Now I know I'm no elite athlete, but I'm usually searching for the pool-side oxygen tank and defibrillator after just a few lengths of normal butterfly - so the thought of having to swim 25m underwater in between lengths of butterfly is terrifying... Do these girls have gills?!     
South Yorkshire Swans Synchronised Swimming Club  ...view gallery

The Swans is a small club based in Rotherham with big ambitions.  I went to photograph them in action at their new swimming pool and saw some very unusual land training not normally associated with synchronised swimming - boxing!  They told me it builds fitness and teamwork... and I'd add self-defence to this having seen how hard these girls were hitting each other!

The best of luck to them as they continue to grow and develop their club in an area not exactly overflowing with synchro resources - one of the key problems from what I was told being a lack of pool time.

Reading Royals Synchronised Swimming Club Posters  ...view gallery

Best wishes and good luck to the Reading Royals and especially their GB squad girls.

The Royals have put together this fantastic video clip using images from the GBswimstars photo shoot  ...VIEW VIDEO
 
Trafford Synchro will be the next synchronised swimming club I photograph in January next year.  I have some new ideas I want to try, involving not just their senior squad but also their 'Little Mermaids' (children) and some Masters (those like me who are just a little advanced in years!)  ...VIEW WEBSITE

 
Reading Royals Synchronised Swimming Club  ...view gallery

All the photos from the photo shoot are now in this gallery.  I did a lot of portraits because I wanted to show the people underneath those 'fixed synchro smiles'... and I also wanted to try out different lighting set-ups!  My new underwater camera gear worked well and allowed me to develop the underwater photos with some very unusual lighting effects.  Many thanks to Sian Kent for helping me out with the lights and to Kate Coupar, head coach, for her kind hospitality - the sandwiches went down a treat after about 2 hours stuck on the M1 during the journey home!