Leading designer, Peter Windett of Crabtree & Evelyn, commissioned Clay to photograph ‘Evelyn’ a rose that he had asked David Austin, rose grower of genius, to create for his renowned shops, that sold wonderful unguents, smells, and soaps.
Seeing Clay work David Austin announced that he wished to do a book with him, as no one had captured the true beauty of his rose before, Peter insisted on designing it and Anne Furness commissioned and published it. This book ‘David’Austin’s English Roses’ was incredibly successful, being hailed the best in the world.
Clay’s unique portrayal of the rose has not been easily copied by others, his knowledge of light being his innate skill. Clay also worked with Peter Beales, renowned for his old fashioned roses.
Clay has a huge archive of these wonderful flowers photographed with great sensitivity. He has been sent all over the world to capture their beauty.
Dumont publishing, in Germany have produced numerous rose calendars, which has been made possible by Clay being given unlimited access to a glorious collection of roses that are grown by Roseby and Robert for the ‘Real Flower Company’. Maggie and Clay work on them together. Maggie arranges the bouquets and Clay shoots them, it is indeed days of wine and roses.
The rose is the most beloved and romantic flower surrounded by mystery, folklore and legend, it never ceases to enchant the beholder, from the simplicity of the humble dog roses in the hedgerow to a wonderful curated collection, there is a heady charm which brings extraordinary solace.