In 1983, Mark Strachan began working as a cadet photographer for the Herald and Weekly Times Newspaper Group. His first big assignment was covering the ‘Ash Wednesday’ bushfires that devastated the Southern part of Australia and made worldwide news. These monochromatic images established him as a gritty story-teller under pressure. After 2 years as a press photographer (in the days when only black & white film was used), he opened his portrait studio at the age of 18 and quickly started to portray people, including the famous and infamous.
Mark’s style has always been simple and to the point and though he now owns two fully equipped and spacious studios, he loves to work with a minimum of equipment, which helps him tread with a ‘small footprint’ and allows quick transits through busy airports. Always a believer in blending in, he rarely uses assistants at his assignments, which he finds can alter the intimacy with which he engages his subjects.
In 2000, Mark migrated to digital capture, but still keeps a museum of over 50 of his film cameras, including Arnold Newman’s Leica M3. He is also a passionate collector of original photographer’s works including Annie Leibowitz, Arnold Newman, Lewis Carroll and Richard Avedon.
Images created by Mark have been published in numerous books, two of which have featured his work exclusively. Add to that innumerable magazines and newspapers, including iconic front covers and a portfolio bursting at the seams, he has a well-rounded and travelled career, spanning over 25 countries including subjects from impoverished children to Heads of State.
In 2009, Mark was asked to document daily life in a small village in Mannya, Uganda for the Cotton On Foundation. This assignment resulted in a coffee table book, “MANNYA – MISSION (IM)POSSIBLE” which was distributed world-wide and is the first book to have been entirely photographed with the then newly released Leica M9 camera.
You can see more of Mark’s work here…