Documenting The Changes

20th August 2017


Those of you that follow my work will have seen this lady appear a couple of times before in my blogs. I am, of course, talking about Sue King. This is the third training photo shoot I have carried out for Sue. Each one timed to be just before a bodybuilding competition that she has entered. In this case it was the BNBF Central competition in the Masters Figure class, which took place on 20th July 2017.
Sue achieved an amazing second place, which has earned her a place in the British Final in September.






To read about Sue’s previous training shoots, and see her progress for yourself, take a look here A Lady That Lifts and here A NABBA Novice No More





It’s hugely interesting for me personally, as I get to not only discover things about her hard work and strict regime, but also see the progress Sue makes with her training, and how her body has changed since the first shoot back in May 2016. It’s precisely the reason Sue commissions me to photograph her in training too. This is a quote from a Facebook post Sue shared….

“Thank you, once again, to Martin J Patterson for my training photos. I like to have these photos just to record progress, not to look perfect, posed, glamorous, etc, so they're just me, as I am in the gym daily, doing my thing, lifting and practising competition poses, in my gym gear with messy hair and hardly any make up on. He always delivers just what I ask for.”
Sue is trained by Mark Spinks, who helps with not just her training routine, but posing and most importantly, her diet and nutritional advice too. Mark can be reached by his Facebook Page Mark Spinks Fitness



I think there is a lot to be said for this approach. Personally I am a fan of ‘natural’, although it is harder to work this way on location. Sue genuinely goes through a series of exercises, and I have to keep up, moving around to record the required details. It is a documentary style session for sure, with no chances for re-takes!



The location was once again Fitness 2000 on Southtown Road, in Great Yarmouth. I am very grateful that they allow us to document Sue’s training sessions here. This is a functioning gym with members using the equipment and areas whilst the photo session is being carried out. Hence (as is my style) all the shots are taken using only available light, I don’t use flash or portable lighting, in this situation would be intrusive and cumbersome, and we have to respect the other gym users too.



I do love photographing documentary style. It’s something I am keen to repeat for other subjects too, not just gyms and training. If you have a project that you might think would suit this, please get in touch. I’d be more than happy to discuss your requirements!







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