Photos that feature heavily in the BBC’s new drama In a Land of Plenty were produced by press photographer Mark Campbell.
In the drama the audience gets to see dozens of black and white photos taken by James.
And the darkroom scenes feature all his own equipment – loaned to the production company to ensure authenticity.
Mark was until recently the deputy chief photographer for Exeter Express and Echo. He was commissioned to produce the production stills for the series and also compose the 40 shots required for an on-screen exhibition.
The 10 part drama centres on fictional press photographer James Freeman who struggles to come to terms with his life and emotions.
Mark was contacted by Talkback art director Mark Stevenson to provide all the photos, and he was also on hand to supervise the darkroom scenes to clinch the necessary realism.
He made several comparisons between his own career and that of thefictional James.
He said: “We both started working on local newspapers and my first picture published was of the miners’ strike in 1984. James’ first picture published was of a strike at his father’s factory in the recreation of 1984.
“We also share an interest in the environment and the fictional exhibitionactually consists of photographs that I took around Stoke-on-Trent in 1980when I was an art student.”
Although location filming finished in November 1999, post production on his coverage of the filming saw Mark working in the darkroom for the next year.
He said: “I cleaned up the old unused darkroom at the Express and Echo and worked until past midnight some nights, I sometimes felt like sleeping there ready to start my 7am shift!”
In total the production photography amounted to more than 200 films and 500 prints.
In a Land of Plenty began broadcast on January 10 but Mark was away covering the religious Kumbh Mela festival in India.
“Thankfully the BBC have sent me all 10 episodes on video so I can catch up and then watch the drama and photographs unfold every Wednesday at 9pm,” he said.
For more production stills, and to see Mark’s agency work, click here.
Back to the photography index
Keep us in the picture
Ring the HoldTheFrontPage newsdesk on
01332 291111 x6022, or to e-mail us now – click here