Our artist of the week, LEO MASON

is a London based artist who specialises in multiple exposure sports and dance photography.

With the rise of so many hopeful photographers I ask what his advice may be for those attempting to carve a way through a saturated digital era. His advice is honest;

“Don’t expect too much. It’s changed so much that craftsmanship is barely easy to obtain and getting a job is difficult. Consider other financial options but never forget to enjoy and maintain the passion alongside." - Leo Mason

Leo ventured into the world of photography in 1975 after an earlier career in advertising with Grey Advertising. Having also briefly worked for the Observer and other National Newspapers he later co-founded Split Second Photo Agency and went on to contribute to TIME magazine, Sports Illustrated, Life, Newsweek, GQ, Paris-Match, Stern and many more over an impressive 40-year career span. He is an associate member of the Royal Photographic Society and holds over 18 major photographic awards.


Leo most recently covered the contemporary ballet performance of Carol Ann Duffy’s dark ‘Snow White’ adaptation. Nevertheless, his most compelling imagery of recent has been from Golgota at Sadler’s Wells. His imagery from this performance spectacularly depicts the dramatic scenes that navigate intensely around traditional flamenco dancing and live horse performance.As a former council member of the Chelsea Arts Club and chairman of the club’s exhibitions and events sub-committee for two years, our interview naturally takes place in the bar of the club.

Since 2009 Leo has photographed some of the world’s best contemporary dancers and ballerina’s such as Carlos Acosta, Natalia Osipova, Tamara Rojo, Vadim Muatagirov, Daria Klimetova and Ivan Vasilev at Covent Garden Sadlers Wells and the London Coliseum. He has also shot all forms of contemporary dance and performance company productions including Flamenco Hip-Hop, Argentinian Tango and Circe du Soleil.

Having covered every summer Olympic from 1976-2008 including four Winter Olympics his reaction to the forthcoming Olympics is intriguing nonetheless he humorously insists that he’s “been there done that” and undoubtedly got many a t-shirt. However, he will be returning to Wimbledon Tennis after a long 5-year break and in September will finally be shooting the Palio de Siena horse race in Italy, something that he has dreamt of working at for a while. He tells me his favourite ever sporting event is when he spent a whole year 1987-88 living in Fremantle, Australia, working under contract for TIME magazine to cover the America’s Cup.

Click here to view Leo’s artwork for sale with ONGallery.