The Witch Ladder
A3 hand signed reproduction giclee print on Hahnemühle German Etching paper.
The warm and kind folk at Treadwell’s, a witchcraft book shop in central London, had passed on my name to the Ashmolean Museum when they were on the lookout for a photographer who had commercial experience associated with the shop. From the outset, this was a great honour, and I felt so very lucky when I got to shoot this project. The shoot was for a show that opened in 2018 at the Ashmolean called Spellbound; it sought to bring together various artefacts and examples of magical thinking from around the globe.
I bought together some of my favourite people as my team, Ephyra modelling; a close friend and long-time collaborator. Milka who is also a friend and long-term collaborator who has acted as a stylist and creative director on many of my shoots, and dear Rosita on makeup. There were long days of shooting and lots of mucking about and early starts in Oxford hotels; we had a blast.
We chose the image here for the cover of the book and poster, it was featured on the leading campaign in tube stops and billboards, and it pictures a Witch Ladder.
A Witch Ladder is a protective charm found mostly in old English houses; you tie the string by hand whilst focusing on a positive thought or wish., weaving in the feathers whilst meditating. I tied the final knot in this charm, and it hangs in my flat around the door. Ephyra holds it here, and I find it evocative, warm, and protective.