I have never consciously sought a style, believing more that content should decide the approach, rather than a style be imposed on it. Consequently when you look at my work, there are many ways I may approach a subject. If my work is not immediately recognisable, then I am quite comfortable with that. I am available to develop creative projects for a wide range of client needs, whether graphic or photographic, large or small. I also offer personal or group workshop styled tuition though either my London or ‘Suffolk Photography Courses’ or ‘Italian Photography Holidays’. Please call or email me through my Roland Blunk ‘Contact me’ page, to discuss a project. I am also available for private or corporate Photography tuition, from Intro and Intermediate through to Advanced levels of photography.
Early creative experiences
Art, someone once observed, was the only way to runaway without leaving home. And so I studied Art and Design at Hornsey College of Art, at what was then the archetypal London Art School. “If you can remember it, you weren’t there”, is the recognised retort to what the period was really like. However, I do remember life after drab boarding schools, being like Steve McQueen escaping over the wire and into Switzerland. I vividly remember Jimmy Hendrix playing in an upstairs bar room above the nearby Manor House pub. This was the performance that a Telegraph music critic more recently described as the finest live performance he ever heard. And that despite the pub being so packed, he could only hear it from the street below. An astonishingly sweaty, powerhouse performance by James Brown at the Cook’s Ferry Inn (now demolished) on London’s North Circular. Psychedelia revolutionaries Pink Floyd as the ‘house band’ of the ‘underground’ UFO club in Tottenham Court Road. The Who at the Roundhouse and Charlie Mingus at Ronnie Scott’s Club. I followed this hedonistic period, by studying graphics at the LCP (now the London College of Communications). And the huge irony surrounding my design studies, concerned my exclusion from applying for the ‘Graphics’ degree course’. Having skipped my A’s at sixteen to study at ‘Hornsey’, I had to accept the LCP’s diploma course. After this I worked for ad agency J Walter Thompson, Terence Conran’s design group and innovative London publishers Mitchell Beazley. For the latter, I occasionally woke and drove astronomer and TV presenter Sir Patrick Moore from Hampstead to Covent Garden in my Mini van, as we discussed life and the universe.
On going freelance, I was thrilled when Tom Eckersley, answered my lecturing application, by saying he loved my stationery design. LCP ‘Head of Graphics’ Eckersley, was one of the foremost poster and graphic designers of the last century (Google him). Subsequently Tom offered me a regular visiting lectureship, on the same degree course that I wasn’t welcome to study on. Now let’s keep that one quiet!
Design and photo equipment
My design and photography skills were learnt in their original pre-digital form. Slow, sometimes laborious, but wonderfully rewarding. Consequently I am forever in awe of the kit I have at my disposal. My main camera is a Nikon D4, which for absolute peace of mind, has two ‘parallel’ memory card functions. This I can use with either the finest AF-S 14-24mm 2.8 Nikon lens; AF-S 24-70mm 2.8 Nikon lens, AF-S 70-200mm 2.8 Nikon lens or the Sigma Art 85mm 1.4 prime portrait lens. I process my work on a MacBook Pro, so I can shoot, download, evaluate and post-produce my work before posting it from anywhere, to anywhere within minutes. I have travelled through time from being Roland Blunk, a young London art student using my parents’ attic as a first ‘dark room’. To fast forwarding through time, whilst using the world as my studio and that really is a miracle to me.
Roland Blunk clients included
The Arts Council
The British Council
The British Tourist Authority
The Crafts Council
The Design Council
Haymarket Media Group
Her Majesty’s Stationery Office
The Institute of Chartered Accountants
The Institute of Contemporary Arts
The Longman Publishing Company
The Manchester City Art Galleries
The National Portrait Gallery
The Opera Babes
The Royal Shakespeare Company
The Scottish Development Agency
The V&A Museum
Appointments and accolades
I have lectured in design and art direction at major art schools in Great Britain including ‘Central Saint Martins’ London. My work has been shown in the international graphic publication ‘Graphis’, The ‘Designers & Art Directors’ Annual and ‘Modern Publicity’. I was elected to ‘Fellowship’ status of the ‘Chartered Society of Designers’ in the late 80’s, (although not currently a member). And I have been a member of the Chelsea Arts Club since 1985.
In 2002 I qualified as a ‘Snowsport England’ ski coach (level 4). I caught the skiing bug as a 14 year old lad, when I went to Switzerland on a school trip. I won the Swiss Bronze medal, which was very much a beginner’s ‘pat on the back’, but I was hooked. Between 1997 and 2010 I worked several weeks a season in both Austria and Italy, as an Alpine ski guide. This was qualified by the ‘Internationaler Verband of Snowsport Instructors’ (IVSI) licence.
Acknowledgements by Roland Blunk
I would like to thank my friend from Italy, Mario Tartaglia, for his excellent assistance and skills, in initiating this Roland Blunk, Suffolk photography website. And friend Adam Barnes for his continuing work on the ‘financial’ sections. I have learnt so much from both Mario and Adam, that I now build, write and design this site myself. I also handle the Search Engine Optimisation, which is why my site flies high for Google searches. Fellow Suffolk photography exponent and good friend Andrew Florides for his help, advice and mentoring over the past seventeen years. Roland Blunk