Belfast Telegraph

Belfast snapper Michael Donald gets up close and personal with Rolling Stones

By Amanda Ferguson

A new Rolling Stones exhibition by an award-winning Belfast photographer will open in London next week.

Striking images of the rock legends caught on camera after Michael Donald was given unprecedented access to the band will be on display in Mayfair from Tuesday until February 23 in a show called 'Ronnie Wood Invites...'

Also exhibiting his work at Castle Fine Art in Bruton Street is John Pasche, the graphic designer who created the famous tongue and lip logo for the group.

London-based Michael, a University of Ulster graduate from the Lisburn Road area of south Belfast, got close to the veteran music stars – Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts and Ronnie Wood – when he took photographs of them while they were filming the 2010 documentary Stones In Exile.

On his stunning exhibition images Michael (47) said: "Mick and Charlie were shot at Stargroves, the isolated country house in Hampshire that Mick bought in 1970.

"They had started recording their album there before realising they had to go into tax exile a year later.

"They recorded the rest of what would become Exile On Main Street in the south of France and LA.

"Charlie hadn't been back to the house since, so walking around with him reminiscing was fascinating."

Michael told the Belfast Telegraph the image of Ronnie Wood with his hands over his face was "a moment that just happened".

Michael said: "He was tired and we'd been shooting for about half-an-hour. He wanted to take a short break. I said okay, and relaxing he struck this pose. He really likes it."

Keith Richards was shot on location in Manhattan.

"He was delightful, funny and had a surprisingly good memory of events of the early Seventies," Michael said.

"The photoshoot actually appears in the film, Stones In Exile.

"There's a point in the film where Keith is shot on Super 8 film. As he is smoking and laughing you can see the ping of my lights going off."

Belfast Telegraph

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