My name is John-Michelle O'Shea.
I have always had a passion for monochrome. I fell in love with old black and white movies as a child in the 1970s. Like many others, I identify black and white with a bygone era – an age we associate with glamour and romance as much as the tragedy of war. I feel the use of black and white triggers a sensory association, a cultural ‘sense memory’.
If I'm in the studio I draw heavily on this rich monochrome heritage. Consciously choosing black and white, and using a certain light or a particular costume detail, you can engage the viewer to suspend disbelief and claim a wisp of the elegance of that era for yourself. That choice is in many ways a rejection of and escape from the modern world and its sensibilities, which daily threaten to overwhelm so many of us.
I have achieved Associate status in the Royal Photographic Society, I am a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and I volunteer my services to several non-profits and charities.
I support my work by selling prints, offering portrait and tuition services, and providing technical services to other creatives and photographers.