I'm a women in a man's world and I wouldn't have it any other way. At seven my dad brought my brother a monkey bike and me a pony. All I can remember thinking was 'I want the bike, not the pony', and the rest is history. I'm from a long line of bikers in my family my father his uncle and my brother rode trials bikes uncle Tolly being among the first to do this sport, so you could say its in the blood.
After owing a few dirt bikes, breaking them, fixing them up with my brother and breaking them again I hit 18, where I took and passed my road test. There was no stopping me then and I somehow managed to persuade my father to invest in a Harley Sportster. As soon as I saw it I couldn't understand why everyone wanted to look the same so on this brand new bike I started ripping bits off and changing it to how I wanted it to look.
About this time I fell in love with photography. I never wanted to go into fashion or advertising and to be honest struggled to find a place to fit. I was obsessed with documentary photography, specially war, but had no interest in being a women in a war zone - just didn't seem to be do able.
I was still riding bikes and taking lots of photographs of them as a hobby, then one day a friend said to me 'We have all these amazing bike photographs you've done, why aren't you selling them?". So that's what I started doing. I can't say its made me a rich women, but its my passion, what I eat, sleep and breathe.
My daughter made me laugh the other day when she said 'mum all the photo's on your phone are the dogs (Two sausage dogs and a Chihuahua) and bikes' I guess she's right. Every time I buy a new bike we rip it apart and start over. Currently we have five three finished and two pending next month.
Jesse James saw my bike photography and asked me to out to Austin Texas to work with him. I was to say the least totally spellbound by the chance of watching him making stuff. Even if his bikes are not your cup of tea he works hard and makes pretty much everything from scratch, which is something to be admired. I tried to capture these moments on film that will be part of my upcoming exhibition later this year; Shed Life, that will also feature lots of bike builders and secret garages.
Every time I enter these places I get goose bumps. The smell of the petrol and oil, the dimly lit corners and decay waiting to be photographed. I have tried to ask myself why I'm like I am. All my girlfriends are happy shopping, make-up and spa days, its just not me. As a kid I was brought a Action man not a Barbie. I had no interest in girl's things.
When I'm not thinking about my next photo project I'm thinking about a new way to build a bike or being obsessed with Ruby helmets or the fact Matchless are about to bring out a very cool bike line of clothing, sooooo, there is a girl in there somewhere, and like I said, its in the blood.