Worthing photographer offers her big-name red-carpet images

You can glimpse the stars in a new photographic exhibition in Worthing.

Friday, 3rd December 2021, 10:05 am
Julie Edwards
Julie Edwards

Angelina Jolie, Kristen Stewart, Brad Pitt and Daniel Craig are among the names featured in the show which takes a look through the lens of Julie Edwards.

The show is open Wednesdays to Saturdays inclusive, 11am to 4pm until December 23 (other times by appointment) at the East Beach Gallery, Worthing, BN11 2FG.

Julie, who has lived in Worthing since 2008, said: “Like most photographers I first shot at school in my teenage years and printing myself using an early home Patterson’s colour darkroom and enlarger. After a separation and divorce in 2007 I decided to re-invent myself and pursue the career I wanted from my youth. I was persuaded go in another direction back then – computers.

“As a child, with a father working in press distribution, I grew up being surrounded by every newspaper, magazine and the all the Sunday supplements of the 1970s which were full of the great photography of McCullin, Bailey and the like. I spent much of my spare time pouring over the images and wanting to be able to produce them. The computer work I was doing at the time I decided to make this change was associated with architecture and so my first commercial work with a camera was in this field, producing very technical high resolution 360s and rectified photos. One of my clients was The Empire in Leicester Square, the venue for some of the top film premieres. It was suggested that I borrow a security pass and go produce some imagery for them.

“With a lot of front and an attitude of projecting that I was meant to be there, I managed to elbow my way into red carpet photography. The oldest image in the show comes from this period; Will Smith at the UK premiere of Seven Pounds who was the first Hollywood star I photographed on the red carpet. It was not long after that I managed to strike a deal with a press photo agency which started my photographic career in earnest.

“It was not long before my red carpet work for The Empire generated more work including film set stills and publicity shots. The first of these was for a little known genre film starring Martin Kemp, of Spandu Ballet fame, whose songs I sang at the top of my voice on school busses.

“My day on set ended up with me sitting around in a strip bar with Martin in full werewolf mode. The images from the shoot were really well received and the next time I met Martin, he shouted across a busy cinema lobby and fought through the crowd to give me a hug. That was a really emotional moment.

“My career and work have continued to develop with me travelling across Europe and the USA to cover red carpet events. Whilst I love covering entertainment and trying to capture the moments that many miss – like the moments the stars let their emotions show for real – one of the most meaningful trips I made was back in 2012 to the Democratic Republic of Congo, producing images there of ex-combatants and survivors of the conflict.

“The images I made in the DRC are the closest I have got to producing the work that I grew up admiring in the supplements. With many of the subjects being survivors of sexual violence, they are probably a set of images that only a woman photographer could create.

“Before Covid locked down my field of photography in 2020 I shot the BAFTA’s, Berlin Film Festival and The Oscars.

“Once lockdown took hold, obviously the field of work really stopped. However in brief respite in August 2020 I managed to photograph at Venice FILM FESTIVAL. Since the opening up I have photographed a number of film premieres and festivals including the Latest Bond, No Time To Die, Venice and Cannes. Images from these are included in the show.

“In all the show comprises of 28 prints from throughout my career so far and includes stars such as Angelina Jolie , Kristen Stewart, Brad Pitt and Daniel Craig.”