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Lincoln City FC’s amazing FA Cup run

Lincoln City FC’s amazing FA Cup run which culminated in a quarter final match against Arsenal at the stunning Emirates Stadium captured imaginations around the world. The non-league side beat Guisley, Altrincham, Oldham, Ipswich, Brighton and Premier League side Burnley to become the first non-league team in 103 years to reach the quarter finals. The team, the managers Danny & Nicky Cowley and the city were suddenly all over the national newspapers and the Burnley result was even in lights in New York’s Times Square. I spent quite a bit of time working on the story myself.

I have been involved in The Times ‘My sporting body’ series from the start having shot some of the athletes and having done the post production work on every sportsperson featured. For the Saturday match day edition against Arsenal I managed to find a Lincoln City player willing to strip naked and be photographed jumping for headers. Striker, Jack Muldoon volunteered. While my assistant (and wife), Sarah hid red-faced in another room, unabashed writer, John Westerby tirelessly fed Jack with a FA Cup 2017 ball. Jack was brilliant. He kicked, headed and performed tricks again and again. Jack is very unusual in professional football by having Type 1 diabetes. He even manages his blood sugar to fit-in with match kick-off times. A real inspiration, here he is as published in The Times.


©Michael Powell 2017 /

Straight after photographing Jack was a very rapid portrait shoot with Lincoln City manager Danny Cowley and assistant, Nicky his brother. The media workload suddenly thrust on the managers was huge and despite an over-running TV interview at Sincil Bank and another one to do in London at a West Ham game just a few hours later they still gave me time. My studio equipment from the Jack Muldoon shoot was still set up so I used it for their portraits. They actually ran from the last shot straight to their car to drive to the capital. This shot is a slight nod to David Bailey’s iconic portrait of the Kray twins but I didn’t have time to change the background lighting to high-key. The one published in The Times was a bit more light-hearted. Two of the nicest guys I’ve met in football.


©Michael Powell 21017 /


And now to Matt Alexander. Matt has a lifelong involvement with football as fan, player, agent, scout and executive with Notts County Ladies Football Club. Writer and ex-player Gregor Robertson interviewed Matt for his ‘Journeyman’ series. We met Matt at Lincoln City where his father, Keith is a legendary figure and frequently acknowledged by the Cowley brothers. Keith Alexander had two spells as manager of Lincoln City taking the team into four play-offs. He was the first black qualified referee in England and the Football League’s first full-time professional manager. He also played in the league and internationally for St. Lucia. I had the pleasure of photographing Keith at Sincil Bank for The Times back in 2004 on his return to Lincoln following a brain aneurysm. My idea was to locate the old archive shot and photograph his son Matt at the same spot. Shame the Lincoln Imp gates have been removed. The shots were used together in The Times.


©Michael Powell 2017 /

©Michael Powell 2004 /

To another Matt. Lincoln City striker Matt Rhead is a towering figure at the club. At 6ft 4 he’s a formidable presence on the pitch. At the Burnley match his physical game produced much tussling with Joey Barton whom some fans accused of trying to get Matt Rhead sent off. For another Times interview I photographed him with ex Chelsea and Ireland player Tony Cascarino. Tony is a regular writer for The Times Sport and found he had much in common with Matt. At 6ft 3 Tony was similarly talented in the air on the end of a long ball. Tony to Matt: “Are you sleeping OK?”. Matt to Tony: “I’ve got two kids so I haven’t slept for years!”. Matt on playing football for a living: “What’s not to love? It’s not a job, it’s a hobby. I’m getting paid. Ridiculous”. I took various shots of them around historic uptown Lincoln and chatting in the Wig & Mitre on Steep Hill. Here they are outside Lincoln Cathedral (lit by some serious off-camera flash).


Tony Cascarino (right) meets Lincoln City’s Matt Rhead in historic Lincoln.
©Michael Powell /


And so to the Emirates stadium. I spotted this cheeky decoration of the Lincoln Imp on Holloway Road just before the match.


©Michael Powell 2017 /


And finally, here’s my view of the match. Pity about the result but what a magnificent journey by Lincoln City.

©Michael Powell 2017 /



This week’s recipe – Breakfast Brioche Bread and Pecan Pudding

Here’s the first in a regular series of recipe blogs from Green and Powell food photography & recipe development, a superb Breakfast Brioche Bread and Pecan Pudding with Maple Syrup. Chef, Rachel Green and I have produced and photographed over 1000 recipes together over the last ten years and published two recipe books. Much of our work is for food producers and growers who need unique content for PR, packaging and websites. Rachel develops recipes using the producer’s ingredients (in this case eggs) then she cooks and I photograph. Many of the shots end up published in national magazines such as Hello! Here is one such recipe. This was featured last month in Hello! as part of a four page spread on egg recipes (see the blog below for the tear sheet). Scroll down for the recipe with method. This one’s a stunner. As ever, I should know because once the pictures were in the can, I ate it! (Well, most of it. Thought I’d better leave some for others). For more on our work click here.


Breakfast Brioche Bread and Pecan Pudding with Maple Syrup. ©Michael Powell /


Breakfast Brioche Bread and Pecan Pudding with Maple Syrup from Green and Powell food photography

Makes 6

5 large whole eggs

2 large egg yolks

500ml of whole milk

2tbsp of caster sugar

1 tsp of vanilla extract

Zest of 1 orange

½ tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp nutmeg

Pinch of salt

1 brioche Loaf sliced


Maple syrup and pecan topping

100g pecan nuts

75g butter

100g soft brown sugar

3 tbsp. of maple syrup


Preheat oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4

In a bowl whisk together the whole eggs, egg yolks, castor sugar, vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg and a pinch of salt.  Whisk until the mixture is blended but not frothy.

Cut the brioche slices in half and arrange in a well-buttered rectangular baking dish, overlapping the slices. Pour the egg mixture over the bread slices; making sure it is all covered evenly.  Cover and refrigerate overnight if possible.

The next day, top with pecans.  Warm together all the remaining ingredients until the butter has just melted.  Remove from the heat and cool slightly, then pour over the French toast.

Bake in the oven for 40 minutes until puffed and lightly golden in colour, if the top of the pudding starts to go to brown, cover with foil.

Serve with extra maple syrup.


Another Hello! magazine spread by Green & Powell Food Photography and recipe development

Hello! magazine has featured another spread of work by Green and Powell food photography and recipe development. Five of Rachel Green’s recipes featuring eggs photographed by me are featured in the spread in the Hello! lifestyle section. They are all brilliant. I know because I tried each one when I’d finished doing the food photography. A particular favourite of mine is the Breakfast brioche and pecan pudding with maple syrup. I’ll be posting the photograph with recipe soon which will become a regular feature here on the blog featuring Green and Powell work. For more go here.

©Michael Powell /

©Michael Powell /

Leicester City star Shinji Okazaki in Sunday Times

The Sunday Times had used my portrait of Leicester City star striker Shinji Okazaki over a half page and online here. The only location available to me was a meeting room at their training ground and had to fit in with various interviews. My three lights were set-up in silence during  TV interviews which meant I had no opportunity to test everything before Shinji was ready to be photographed. In all I took just 20 frames of him before my time was up and having checked the file creation times on the first and last frames shot they both read 11:13am so I did the whole job in less than one minute. This is a brilliant example of having faith in technique and knowing equipment inside out. There was zero time to fine-tune  so everything had to work properly (including me) and thankfully no bits of kit proved temperamental. Editorial portraits against the clock like this are almost always a case of making the most of a situation and getting something out of what often seems like nothing. In this case I read somewhere that Shinji Okazaki enjoys being on the dance floor so decided to make a feature of my own lighting rig. I did consider using coloured gels on the flashes behind him but thought that would be pushing my luck with so little time available. Maybe next time.



©Michael Powell /

Michael Powell on BBC One Show discussing photographing Donald Trump

Following on from my blog about the day I met Donald Trump (scroll down), the BBC One Show contacted me and asked me to take part in their feature about the new President. You can find it here. It’s the first feature on the show. I was filmed being driven around Gloucester in a custom Trump Cadillac limousine designed and built for Donald Trump in the late 1980’s while being interviewed on the time I spent with him at Claridges back in 1996. The car has an automated drinks machine fed by supplies of booze in the boot, fax, shredder, safe, NEC 9a phone and TV. Apparently Cadillac wanted him to order fifty but he stopped at just two. The interior is awash with varnished teak, leather, Trump logos and gold fittings. It has a 5 litre engine and unsurprisingly we had to stop for fuel while filming.

Weirdly, Donald Trump is not my family’s only link to the USA Presidency as my father found himself playing golf with Vice President Spiro Agnew in the early 1970’s. The President at the time was the infamous Richard Nixon. Agnew’s tenure was dogged by corruption allegations and he became only the second Vice President to resign from office. I don’t know if he ever cheated at golf but according to my father nobody lost a ball as the course was teeming with secret service agents operating as ball-spotters.

Michael Powell,Donald Trump,Cadillac limousine

BBC The One Show 19/1/17