Photographers' Blog

All hail the Queen

By Suzanne Plunkett

When Queen Elizabeth II makes a public appearance there is usually a long list of protocol rules for those handling the visit, but this clearly doesn’t include what to do when hailstones start showering down.

The Queen was caught in a sudden hail storm on Wednesday while meeting the public in Richmond Park, southwest of London. Dark clouds overhead unleashed a torrent of ice on the 86-year-old monarch and a bitter wind tried to snatch away her umbrella.

The burst of wintry weather caught many people off guard. There were squeals from school children gathered for the event.

And around the Queen, officials hovered uneasily, unsure whether to breach rules on touching her as they ushered her to and from shelters.

But the Queen herself was unfazed. Despite being dressed for less inclement weather in an elegant powder blue dress and a white lavender and pale blue tweed coat, she kept her poise and gamely triumphed over the wind in the battle for control of her transparent umbrella.

The party Prince

By Suzanne Plunkett

You could be forgiven for thinking photos of Prince Harry’s recent tour of the Caribbean showed the young royal living up to his reputation as a high class carouser. There he was slurping enormous cocktails, dancing the night away and kissing a young woman on the cheek.

Splashed across newspapers and website with headlines like “Prince Harry gets the party started” or “Harry dances in the street,” these images appear to show a boozy extrovert who will take any excuse to shake his stuff in public.

I spent more than a week tailing the third-in-line to the British throne on a whistle stop tour of Belize, the Bahamas, Jamaica and Brazil. Though I photographed him in many of these situations, it was pretty clear Harry isn’t quite the party animal he’s often made out to be.

Wimbledon, William and a Mexican Wave

Rafael Nadal is hurt. A physio and a doctor have arrived on court to inspect his left foot. I scramble to position myself directly across the court from his chair to capture what could be a crucial moment in the match. It is towards the end of a tense first set. Temperatures have only cooled slightly from a sweltering 33 degrees C (91F).

In my haste to capture Nadal’s injury I had left my original position with just a 300mm lens and Canon Mark 4 body, knowing I had to be agile as I joined a crush of photographers.

As I shot a few frames, I noticed out of the corner of my non-shooting eye his opponent Juan Martin Del Potro complaining that Nadal is wasting time. Engrossed in this unfolding tennis story, I try to ignore the crowd who are restless and trying to get a Mexican Wave going.