Nil Desperandum, portraits

Nil Desperandum – Don’t despair! The motto of the Bellahouston Harriers running club that I train with.

For the past few years I’ve been running with the club, based in Glasgow’s Southside and established way back in 1892 making it one of Scotland’s oldest running and athletics clubs. With a prestigious history, including Olympians, it’s become a welcome addition to my week and life. And nicely, being a photographer who runs, or a runner who photographs, I can help out the club by photographing a lot of  which benefits the club. I may not win them any running medals, but I can shoot some portraits and pictures which all help with raising the profile of the club!

I never imagined when I took up running what an impact it would have on me, and the multitude of benefits it brings, not just the ability to run a few hundred metres to catch a bus. Learning to be a ‘runner’, learning to be able to leave the house and knock out a 10km or half marathon run brings huge pleasure, and benefits to health and to mental health (important when for all but important for freelancers who can sometimes live in a bubble of their own profession). But the running also brings me mental fortitude which when times get tough, when the assignments slow down, or when you make a pitch for a big contract and then it passes by, then the ability to be tough, to stay the course and rebound strongly comes into play.

One of the other great benefits of joining the club has been the making of new friends and contacts, opening up of new conversations and experiences. Earlier this year I went with friends from the club for a drinking training weekend, and on the way back from a one mile time trial run on the Saturday afternoon I took the chance to shoot a few portraits of them against an old farm shed we passed. Proving true the old adage that the best camera you have is the one that you have on you.

For no other reason than getting some pics off my phone and laptop and onto the blog, and sharing some work from the past while, here are some iPhone-filtered portraits of my fellow Bellahouston Harrier runners. Nil desperandum.



An exhibition of work from the @EverydayClimateChange Instagram feed is currently on show at Glasgow’s Trongate 103 Arts centre, next to Street Level Photoworks in the city. As well as being a contributing photographer to the group Instagram account, I’ve also curated and produced this exhibition showcasing the work of my fellow colleagues and the issues of climate change around the globe.

04 October – 04 November

103 Trongate, Glasgow City Centre G1 5HD.




EverydayClimateChange is a collective Instagram account involving 20 photographers from 6 continents, depicting causes and effects of, and solutions to, everyday climate change. This  exhibition brings the photographic works of 14 of the contributors off the renowned EverydayClimateChange Instagram feed onto the gallery walls. Includes panel images by Ashley Crowther (based in South Korea), Sima Diab (Syrian, based in Egypt), Georgina Goodwin (based in Kenya), James Whitlow Delano (USA / Lives in Tokyo, Japan), Matilde Gattoni (Italy), Nick Loomis (based in Senegal), Ed Kashi (USA), Suthep Kritsanavarin (Thailand), Mette Lampcov (Danish, based in USA), John Novis (England), Mark Peterson (USA), J.B. Russell (USA, based in France), Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert(Scotland), Elisabetta Zavoli (Italian, based in Indonesia).

@EverydayClimateChange on Instagram

More info on @EverydayClimateChange exhibitions 

The exhibition features as part of the Season of Change, a UK-wide programme of cultural responses celebrating the environment and inspiring urgent action on climate change. It commenced on 1st June and runs until 16 December, coinciding with the COP24 UN Climate Negotiations in Katowice, Poland. More info here.

Panel design and exhibition support by Yuko Hirono / Cabin 8 Design.


Nelson Mandela in Glasgow

My images, shot in 1993, of Nelson Mandela in Glasgow receiving the Freedom of the City, are about to go on show at the Glasgow City Chambers, from 26th September through to the 1st of November.  The show has been made possible with the support of Street Level Photoworks.

From Street Level Photoworks: Award winning editorial photographer Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert was one of the photographers there that day, and these images are a record of that event. Previously published as a pocketbook by Cafe Royal Books, this is the first time these images have been seen in Glasgow.

“…It is a privilege to be a guest of this great City of Glasgow. It will always enjoy a distinguished place in the records of the international campaign against apartheid.

The people of Glasgow in 1981 were the first in the world to confer on me the Freedom of the City at a time when I and my comrades in the ANC were imprisoned on Robben Island serving life sentences, which in apartheid South Africa then meant imprisonment until death.

Whilst we were physically denied our Freedom in the country of our birth, a City, 6,000 miles away, and as renowned as Glasgow, refused to accept the legitimacy of the apartheid system, and declared us to be free. And in a real sense we were free, because however cruel the treatment meted out on us in prison, we never lost sight of the vision of a new South Africa as enshrined in our Freedom Charter. The City of Glasgow in granting us the Freedom of the City also took upon itself a very special obligation. It resolved to do everything possible to secure our freedom from the prisons of apartheid. It took up our plight in Britain and internationally. For example, the following year the Lord Provost co-ordinated a Declaration signed by over a thousand Mayors from 56 countries across the world which called for our freedom. Then in 1985 it joined with over 100 British local authorities in petitioning the then Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, to press for my release. Such initiatives were thankfully successful…”

– From Nelson Mandela’s speech, 9th October 1993.

Glasgow City Chambers
82 George St, Glasgow G2 1DU
Mon – Fri, 8.30am – 5pm

@EverydayClimateChange exhibitions.

Lots of good news regarding the @EverydayClimateChange Instagram photography group of which I’m a contributing member, and which was founded by Tokyo-based photographer James Whitlow Delano. We’ve managed to secure a few different exhibitions of the work, bring our important photographs documenting climate change off of the Instagram feed and onto the gallery walls.

Over the coming weeks and month or two there’ll be exhibitions of the work in Cascais, Portugal, another show in Verona, Italy and one in Glasgow, Scotland. Details of all three shows are below.

Trongate 103, Glasgow, Scotland.

This show is made possible by the generous support and assistance of Malcolm Dickson at Street Level Photoworks. The show will run from 4th October – 4th November. 

There will be a launch drinks reception, at which I’ll do a talk about the work and our EvrrydayClimateChange group, on 4th October, at about 6pm or 6:30pm. Check for details a little closer to the time!

This show forms part of Scotland’s Season of Photography 2018, and also part of the Season for Change (Artist’s responses to climate change).

Exhibiting artists will be James Whitlow Delano, Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert, Ed Kashi, Matilde Gattoni, Nick Loomis, J.B. Russell, Mark Peterson, Mette Lampcov, Ashley Crowther, John Novis, Georgina Goodwin, Sima Diab, Elisabetta Zavoli, Suthep Kritsanavarin.

At Cascais in Portugal. 

On show at the Paredao de Cascais, Portugal, until 15th September. This is a free, outdoor event. Go take a look on your way to the beach.

Last year the City of Cascais engaged in a communication program to raise people attention about some central contemporary topics, one of these is the Climate Change.
The City of Cascais infact is already suffering from the impacts of this great problem with exceptional heat waves and sea level rise.

With thanks to the Department of Cultural Affairs of the City of Cascais (Portugal).

Show was made possible with help from Marta and Livia at Photo-Op Italy.

Natural History Museum of Verona, Italy.

The exhibition will take place at Verona’s Natural History Museum, from the 5th of October 2018 to 13th of January 2019. And is kindly technically supported by Fuji who will produce the prints.

There will also be a catalogue printed to accompany the show, printed by Silvana Editoriale.

Show was made possible with help from Marta and Livia at Photo-Op Italy.

Bellahouston Harriers – Nil Desperandum

Over the past year or two as I’ve ran for pleasure with the Glasgow-based Bellahouston Harriers club, I’ve been photographing the running club meets, the training, some portraits, made a little movie of track nights in winter…basically merging my two loves, that of running and photography, and giving back to the club along the way with photography.

Very nicely an edit of this work has now been made into book form by the club, and has finally been printed for the club members and a few extra copies. The book, ‘Nil Desperandum’, documents the runners in the 125th year of the historic Glasgow club, and includes quotes by the club runners on why they run, what it brings them and why they run with the club. A little snapshot of running club life.

During my recent photography assignment through 40 countries of the Commonwealth for with the Queen’s Baton Relay for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games, the running club published on their site a little profile of myself and how my running fits in with my work. Stuart Miller, the author of the profile has given me permission to reprint it below.


From Bellahouston Harriers website. –

‘Commonwealth journey ends for Bella snapper’

The opening ceremony in the Gold Coast on Wednesday will signal the start of competition for some of the world’s top athletes, but it will mark the end of remarkable Commonwealth Games journey for one Bellahouston Harrier.

Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert has spent much of the past year travelling the world, documenting the Queen’s Baton Relay for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games. As one of the official Baton Relay photographers, Jeremy has captured images of the Baton’s passage across the Commonwealth, through major cities like Lagos and Auckland, remote areas of the South Sea Islands, and tribal communities in Africa.

Jeremy often spends weeks or months away from home at any one time. He has spent the last three months following the baton across Australia as part of the final 100 days countdown to the Games – when the baton is opened and the Queen’s message inside is read out by Prince Charles at the opening ceremony, it will signify the start of the 21st edition of the Games.

“My job as photo journalist is to document the passage of the Queen’s Baton Relay – this is the largest relay in the history of the Games, spanning 388 days, and covering 230,000 kilometres,” Jeremy said. “My days are full-on taking stills and shooting video, before editing the images and sending them to the Gold Coast media team for distribution to media around the world, and upload onto the official Games social media accounts.”

Jeremy said that his average day following the baton will start at 7am. He’ll track runners carrying the baton for miles on end through the countryside on some legs, while on others the baton will be passed from person to person every few hundred metres.

He described visits to schools, where the baton is carried around sports fields by pupils, and the showcasing of the baton at tourist hotspots. Top athletes will often carry the baton, and Jeremy recalled capturing David Rudisha and Lynsey Sharp in action, while he will also follow the baton on visits to local TV stations and to evening receptions hosted by the Australian High Commissioner or Governor General. Typically, at the end of the day, Jeremy will edit between 800 and 1,000 photos to select the best 20 to send back to Australia.

Despite long days working, and plenty of travelling, Jeremy has managed to find time for running in his hectic schedule.

“You make the most of free time when you get it,” he said. “If we have a later start such as 9am I can get out a run before work. On the Africa leg of my trip early in 2017 one of my colleagues was very into keeping fit and he and I set ourselves a challenge of doing a run in each country outside of the hotel grounds – I tried to keep that going through the whole year. In the end I think I managed to run in about 35 of the 40 countries I visited.”

“It was a great challenge to do because it plays into my love for travel and adventure. I combine running with photography. I love getting up and out while the light is really beautiful. You get to see a different side to where we are staying and it is great to look back and say ‘I had a good run there’, even if I manage out for only 5k. Photography is a young man’s game. I know running keeps me healthy and sharp and that is a big thing for me,” he said.

Of all the runs he has done while away, and all the places he has been, there are a couple of particular highlights.

Jeremy said: “Last December, in Vanuatu, the schedule that week was not quite as intense so I got out running four times. The hotel was next to a lagoon. I went out very early in the morning because of the heat. One morning I went out at 5am and I found myself running in a place that was so lush and beautiful. The environment was so beautiful I found myself laughing out loud. I was thinking to myself how lucky I was to be there, have the health to run, and how happy I was.”



“During the Africa leg we visited Iten in Kenya, the home of great distance running. We did not have a lot of time there, but a colleague and I wanted to squeeze a quick run in to say we ran in Iten so we ran up to under where the iconic sign of ‘Welcome to Iten Home of Champions’ stands. It was really pleasing to be there and see the town, and a nice little moment,” he said.

Jeremy’s links to the Commonwealth Games began back in 2012 when he successfully tendered for one of the photographer jobs for the Queen’s Baton Relay for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games. However, his love of running developed before then while he was living in Japan and training for the Tokyo marathon. It was during a rare trip back home that Jeremy’s association with Bellahouston Harriers began.

“I chose Bellahouston Harriers because I saw the distinctive vest,” Jeremy said. “I saw someone wearing the vest at Parkrun and I thought ‘wow that just looks amazing’. I came down to the club for a few weeks and really enjoyed mixing with like-minded people.”

After returning permanently from Japan, Jeremy joined the club in October 2016. His love of the club vest led him to organise a photo shoot for members where they had the opportunity to have portraits taken in their vests.

“I have been a professional photographer for 28 years and I am a believer in doing personal jobs,” Jeremy said. “It helps you to keep sharp and polish up aspects of your work that you need to work on. I wanted to portray the cross section of the people who run for the club and ‘run for the vest’, from the fast guys to the slower members.”

During his time as member, Jeremy has also beautifully documented the club’s 125 year anniversary celebrations and captured the atmosphere at a winter track session. He harbours longer term ambitions in movie-making.

“I am trying to write screenplay for a movie,” Jeremy said. “It will be set on a boat in the North Sea and was inspired years ago by the time I spent photographing on fishing trawlers. I am excited by the imagery I could put to it.”