Available now – 47 / A Life With Cystic Fibrosis: New photography book explores the reality of living with cystic fibrosis.
Cystic fibrosis (CF) affects more than 10,400 people in the UK, but the daily challenges faced by those with the condition remain relatively unknown. 47 / A Life With Cystic Fibrosis is a new photography book which aims to change that.
People with cystic fibrosis experience a build-up of thick sticky mucus in the lungs, digestive system and other organs, causing a wide range of challenging symptoms affecting the entire body. It’s a life-limiting condition and the median predicted survival rate is just 47 years old. There’s currently no cure.
The book presents a series of stunning portraits exploring the realities of living with CF and each subject’s attitude to life and their condition up to and beyond the age of 47. People with CF struggle with a wide range of symptoms from persistent coughing, chronic lung infections and CF-related diabetes to isolation due to risk of cross infection and double lung transplants. An average day contains a complex mix of medications and physiotherapy and lengthy hospital stays are commonplace.
“With this book I’ve tried to capture these personalities and my hope is that as a collective body of work, it gives an insight into the reality of living with this condition. As a dad of a 2 year old who was diagnosed with CF at 3 weeks, this project is something I’m incredibly passionate about. What I’ve learned is that while CF is unforgiving, relentless and unbelievably cruel it also creates strength, resilience, defiance and an appreciation of life that many of us can only ever hope to find.”
– Simon Wiffen
“Simon’s intimate portraits give a unique insight into the lives of some of the 10,400 people in the UK living with cystic fibrosis (CF). This book beautifully captures multiple voices and reveals the reality of living with a condition that shortens life. Although there is no cure for CF, advances in research are helping people to live longer. However, as these stories attest, CF remains a daily challenge.”
– Anne Shinkwin, Director of Fundraising at The Cystic Fibrosis Trust
The book features portraits of 47 people from across the UK, ranging in age from 4 to 61 years old as well as an ‘In memory’ section which remembers a tiny fraction of the many people who die each year as a result of CF. One of the subjects in the book sadly passed away just weeks after having his picture taken and before the book was published.
The book is available to purchase for £20, with £5 of the sale price being donated to the Cystic Fibrosis Trust to support the work they do every day to support those affected by CF and to help work towards a cure.
To read reviews and purchase a copy of the book please visit – https://www.simonwiffenphotography.co.uk/47-a-life-with-cystic-fibrosis/
The Yorkshire Sculpture Park has always been one of my favourite places to visit. We’re incredibly lucky to have it on our doorstep. Last weekend I was lucky enough to finally visit the Beyond Time exhibit by Chiharu Shiota – something I’ve been desperate to see (and photograph!) for a long time.
This particular installation is set in the 18th Century chapel within the grounds of the Park and is visually stunning. A central piano sculpture takes centre stage in the chapel from which threads extend out to fill the entire room, combined with various sheets of music. The piece is described as:
Embracing all who enter within an extraordinary experience, Shiota’s project references the Chapel’s rich history and years of human presence, dating back to 1744, making poignant allusion to the bells that were rung, the songs that were sung, and the lives that revolved around it, from cradle to grave.
There’s a great video that not only gives a bit more information about the piece, but also gives an insight into the installation process:
It’s one of the most impressive pieces of visual art I’ve ever seen and I’d recommend seeing it for yourself if you get the chance as the photos really don’t do it justice.
You can read more about this project on the Yorkshire Sculpture Park website – https://ysp.org.uk/exhibitions/chiharu-shiota
Zoë Eady is a Glass Artist based in Leeds. In her studio, The Glass Garden, she creates her Stained Glass artwork using both traditional and modern techniques. The majority of her works are large decorative panels commissioned for peoples homes.
Zoë invited me along to spend a few hours with her in the studio to shoot her at work. I had a great time learning about the various stages of her process as well as finding all about the commissions she’s currently working on.
Her studio is a veritable treasure trove absolutely full of beautiful little details that give a real insight into her personal workspace.
“Simon came to the project with a keen eye for the little details that make The Glass Garden a magical place to work. He brought a sensitivity to the work that perfectly reflects the environment. Exactly what I was hoping to achieve.”
– Zoë Eady, The Glass Garden