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Nicola Tree

Photographer Overview

I’m a inquisitive and creative product and portrait photographer based in London. 

From floating chairs to sprouting lights, I delve into the brand stories behind products to create images that are captivating and fun. Having mastered lighting, composition and colour I am commissioned by artists, designers and makers as well as luxury brands who value my ability to think differently and offer playful ways to present their products.

My portraiture has found me documenting makers melting glass, scientists separating blood or politicians beyond the confines of Westminster, I’m fascinated and intrigued by people's personal stories. Equipped with the ability to work in a variety of environments, I enjoy collaborating with subjects over a period of time to tell and celebrate their unique stories and achievements. Skilled at putting my subjects at ease, my practice ranges from political portraiture to social documentary projects and exhibitions. Recent commissions include in-depth studies of female scientists and engineers, artisan makers, local grass root sports groups, Windrush elders of Waltham Forest, female members of parliament and Just Stop Oil activists. Each series focuses on women capturing their experience and documenting their contribution to the wider world.

My political portraiture has appeared in The Guardian, The New Statesman and The New York Times. Exhibitions have been awarded funding by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and London Borough of Waltham Forest.

Recent portrait commissions and Projects:

Civil Disobedients
Just Stop Oil is an environmental activist group, using civil resistance and direct action to halt new fossil fuel licensing.I set out to document this community that have been outcast by the establishment for having incompatible values and actions. Through meeting and photographing the members, I found a community that was engaging, strong, kind and connected, supporting each other through incredibly brave actions and taking the consequences in their stride.
I chose to feature female identifying members individually, in their environments using a rectangle of orange material to graphically link them to the wider campaign and collective action they are involved in. For the series, I asked each sitter to write a few words about what the JSO community means to them to accompany their portrait.

We are Here
This is a group project with the photography collective Image17. The project documents Waltham Forest residents who came to the area from the Caribbean in the 1950’s, to 70's. The project began in 2019 each photographer capturing images archival and contemporary from the participants. This exhibition is currently showing at the Vestry House museum in Walthamstow, London.

209 Women
This project featured 209 female photographers commissioned to photograph the 209 female MP’s elected in 2017 to parliament. I Photographed Jo Swinson from the Liberal Democrat Party. The project produced an exhibition in Parliament and later moved to the Open Eye gallery in Liverpool in 2019.

A Year in Opposition
Photographing the first year of five female Labour MP’s elected in the 2015 general election, Angela Rayner, Tulip Siddiq, Paula Sherriff, Jess Phillips and Ruth Smeeth. The story was published in the New Statesmen and the images are available on Getty Images.

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