Photographer, Oasis/The Verve (UK)
Michael Spencer Jones is one of the UK’s most highly regarded and influential rock photographers, responsible for creating some of the most iconic sleeve art in recent British rock history, including The Verve’s ‘Urban Hymns’ and the first three Oasis albums ‘Definitely Maybe’, ‘(What’s The Story) Morning Glory?’ and ‘Be Here Now’.
Influenced by the American greats such as Alfred Stieglitz and Edward Steichen, Michael developed a strong interest in photography and especially portraiture. He also became fascinated by the work of Storm Thorgerson and the early Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin covers, and this influence is evident in the photographs he created for Oasis and The Verve during the Britpop era.
Whilst studying photography and film at Bounemouth & Poole Collage of Art, Michael found time to assist the famous advertising photographer Stak on some of the award winning Benson & Hedges campaigns. “ Working with Stak was a great experience and he taught me a lot about the craft of photography and the importance of, attention to detail”
Whilst working with Stak Michael was introduced to the 60’s fashion photographer Terence Donovan whose studio in Mayfair was next door. “Terence Donovan was a great character and a real inspiration to me, each evening he would come into Stak’s studio, hold court and come out with some of the funniest stories”.
Having passed the three-year course at Bournemouth with distinction, Michael decided to take a different path to his fellow students, (most of whom headed for London) and went to Manchester instead. “With hindsight moving to Manchester was one of the best things I could have done; it gave me the opportunity to break into what was just about to become the UK’s most exciting music scene”. Photographing The Stones Roses at Spike Island was one of his first commissions.
As well as working within the music industry, Michael has captured many familiar faces with his simple and emotive style of portraiture; using natural or available light to create an intimacy between the subject and viewer. It was this style of portraiture which Michael used, to produce the series of acclaimed portraits for the permanent exhibition ‘Children in War’ at the Imperial War Museum North.
Michael has recently published – Supersonic – The Oasis Photographs through Omnibus Press. A limited edition book showcasing his work with Oasis.
Michael has worked closely with many clients including The Times, The Guardian, Harvey Nichols, EMI, Virgin Records, Parlophone, Big Brother etc, as well as numerous management companies and design agencies. Michael currently resides in the UK and is available for commissions in the UK and overseas.