20 Years on…

I found my 1994 San Marino Grand Prix accreditation in the loft at my parents house the other week:

There are defining moments in a photographers career. Mine was 20 years ago today at the Imola race circuit in Italy.

One of the reasons I got into this job was so that I could follow the Formula One world championship around the world.

The sound of the Ferrari V12 up close. Seriously, for a petrol head there was nothing better!

I got my chance when a now defunct magazine commissioned me to shoot the 1994 season.

After 7 laps of the San Marino grand prix a lot of lives were changed. It’s an event when you remember where you were. I realised now it doesn’t make any difference that I just happened to be there.

I was there for the glitz, the glamour, the colour, the competition. I never expected death. Now, looking back I realise I was a very naive young man.

I was going to write about the experience of the weekend, but then I thought everyone who was there has their own story, along as everyone who wasn’t.

It’s amazing to think that a sportsman could touch the lives of so many people. It shows the strength and the talent of the great man, and the same for Sport.

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About Gray Hughes photographer

Gray Hughes grew up in southwest London but has always had strong connections to the USA. He has spent many summers on road trips, visiting family in California. In his early twenties he moved to New York and assisted various fashion photographers before returning to London to shoot editorial sports and lifestyle. He soon graduated into shooting commercially for brands including Coca-Cola, Asics, Nike, Adidas, Reebok and Powerade. Gray has always loved film and music – his mother exposed him to Hitchcock at an inappropriately young age. As a young teen he used to record music demos on a four track recorder. Then in 2001 he took a break from photography to pursue a career in music, remixing dance music for four years before returning to his first love, photography. Gray’s personal projects have taken him to cowboy country in Montana, USA as well as Rio de Janeiro and more recently, around the grassroots rugby clubs of Britain. His film, ‘Heartland’ was a finalist in the 2015 AOP awards, with the accompanying photographs featured in the Sunday Times Magazine. He directed his first commercial for Glamorgan Brewing Company in 2015 and then subsequently joined Ridley Scott Associates where he was added to the photgraphy and moving image roster, he is on an indenpendent arrangement while he grows his show-reel so is free to collaborate with other production companies. So far this year he has directed films for Reebok and Standard Life and has shot a global advertising campaign for Vodafone.

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