BBC News Interview (In pictures: Behind the mask) 31st July 2018

Thank you to BBC in Pictures Corespondent Phil Coomes, interviewing me about my Portraitist Photography Exhibition. The exhibition opens at Wex Photographic’s Gallery in Whitechapel on 1st August 2019. Please see full transcript below.

(Full Interview) 31st July, 2018

(In pictures: Behind the mask)

Written by: Phil Coomes

In pictures: Behind the mask

British photographer Rory Lewis believes portraits should preserve history and not just reflect the shell of the subject.

Inspired by the German expressionists of the early 20th Century and artists such as Caravaggio, Lewis seeks to present truthful images, to show every "line, mark and scar, to preserve history in a picture".

Actors are asked to act and move slowly and thoughtfully as Lewis looks to capture the moment he wants.

"Patrick Stewart always plays heroic characters," says Lewis who photographed the actor in New York. "I wanted him to be seen as a villain." The resulting frame shows Stewart's piercing expression directly into the lens. And Lewis knew that was the one.

The photograph of David Bamber, Julian Bleach and Ciarán Hinds was based on Caravaggio's The Taking of Christ.

Lewis says that all three actors engaged with the idea. And, following some debate about who should play Jesus, they began to act out their roles.

"This picture of Natalie Dormer shows her looking past the viewer, not at them," says Lewis, who sees himself as a travelling portraitist, with one picture opening the door to the next.

An exhibition of his work entitled Portraitist can be see at the Wex Photo Video Gallery in London E1 from 1 August to 30 September 2018.