19 August 2015

Meet the 2015 FiPP Judges - Abigail Harman

Abigail (Abbe) Harman has a trifecta in training in three different countries.

Initially Abbe undertook traditional training in the UK at City and Guilds of London Institute in Photography (Distinction) in 1983. She followed this with an Art and Design Degree at Michigan State University. In Australia Abigail has put that training and development to good use by establishing herself as a successful Commercial photographer in Perth, Western Australia. You can see some of Abigail's work by clicking HERE.

The effervescent Abigail's approach to Commercial success is reflected in her personal approach - an amazing capacity for work, creative flexibility and winning ways with her clients. Just like with Clint Eastwood, Abigail always makes your day. Once you've met Abbe, you are not likely to forget her.

In a recent chat with Abbe I posed her these questions.

FiPP:  Abbe, you're a keen traveller, what's your favourite overseas destination?

Abigail: My fave overseas country is the USA, particularly the South West – Colorado, Utah, New Mexico and Arizona. We lived in California for a time, so I love it there too. I think there is a link between these places and the music I listened to growing up and the movies I saw. 

FiPP: Do you have a favourite sport, hobby or past-time?

Abigail:  My favourite sport, hobby and pastime, all rolled into one, is observing my beloved ‘Mr Grumpy’ in action! He has me laughing in stitches all day long. My favourite occupation is photography (no surprise there) – whether doing it professionally or for my own pleasure.  Photography is like a love affair with life.
(FiPPnote: 'Mr Grumpy' is Abigail's husband John)

FiPP: If you could photograph anyone in the world who would you choose?

Photo by Sue McLeod
Abigail:  Clint Eastwood! He has the most interesting face. He seems to have been around all of my life and I have always enjoyed his movies, whether acting or directing. I think it would be an awesome challenge as I suspect he’s not that fussed with being photographed. 

FiPP: What is the one extra thing you always take with you on a shoot?

Abigail: Crunchy bars, chocolate and nuts: I have them in lots of pockets of my camera bag. I’m like a squirrel, but I get so hungry!! 

FiPP: What advice would you give to a 17 year old Abigail?

Abigail: There is so much I could tell myself now that I’m a wee bit older! I think it was Henri Cartier-Bresson who said ‘Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst.’ It really is the case that the more you do something, the better you get at it and as you mature you will come to see that you have the potential to have a profound effect on others. The kinder and more empathetic you are to people, the more they’ll reveal of their true selves. In other words, be nice to people. You will then have a portrait of who they really are instead of just a picture of them.


 Entries to the 2015 Fremantle International Portrait Prize close on Friday 21 August. 

Click HERE for details.

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