Cromer-based company help rock photographer’s exhibition escape the conventional gallery

PUBLISHED: 10:58 16 May 2015 | UPDATED: 10:58 16 May 2015

Paul Reeve and Nick Elliott. Copyright John Miller.

Paul Reeve and Nick Elliott. Copyright John Miller.


Loud and proud is the theme of one rock photographer’s exhibition which has escaped the confines of a conventional gallery.

Nick Elliott has set out to bring his pictures to life by teaming up with Cromer-based fabric-welding experts Structure-flex to create the giant of all outside exhibitions.

The photographer, from near Holt, will see his dreams become reality at an exhibition in Cheshire and hopes to bring his creations to Norfolk.

At an impressive eight metres tall and five metres wide, his 13 pieces of art set out to reflect the power of some of the rock stars they depict.

Mr Elliott thought of the concept around four years ago when he decided to make art which interacted with the viewer.

Jim Kerr performing with Simple Minds at Blickling Hall Norfolk 17 July 2009Jim Kerr performing with Simple Minds at Blickling Hall Norfolk 17 July 2009

He said: “The exhibition is about immersing the observer into the live performance so it had to be as big as possible to provide a truly memorable experience. I wanted to create a ‘living’ exhibition that was interactive and chose images especially that would be appreciated at a distance, but also immeasurably powerful and engulfing close up.”

His exhibition, Size Matters, showcases a host of artists Mr Elliott shot over his career, including Beverley Knight, Motörhead’s Lemmy, 
The Darkness’ Justin Hawkins, Simple Minds’ Jim Kerr, Europe’s Joey Tempest and Skunk Anansie’s Skin.

The gigantic artworks will be held up by a metal ‘picture frame’ to help them stand independently.

One of the obstacles the artist and printers faced was finding material which could withstand nature’s elements. Mr Elliott did not want his vision for the large scale pictures to blow away with one gust of wind.

Paul Reeve, managing director at Structure-flex, said the company tested a range of fabrics before settling on a perforated material which allows wind to flow through.

He said: “We produced a number of prototypes at various sizes and tested different fabrics before recommending the final specification.

“Designing a suitable structure that depicted the look and feel of pieces of art, yet secured them into position to fulfil any health and safety requirements, was also a big consideration. We are all thrilled with the results.”

Mr Reeve said printing the artwork did not take a lot of time, but deciding which grey scale was best made the process a long one.

The company is able to achieve the detailed artwork because its printers can create a vast grey scale range of black ink through to light black ink.

He added: “We didn’t want Nick to lose how he saw that image. We had to create it on a large scale, but keep
the detail the same as the small picture.”

This unusual task, he added, is far from the company’s daily work which includes manufacturing lorry curtain sides, flexible drinking water tanks and heavy duty bags used the in oil exploration operations.

Mr Elliott plans to tour his exhibition across the UK, but it will make its first appearance at the Pageant of Power festival in the grounds of Cholmondeley Castle, Cheshire, on June 12-14.

For more information about Mr Elliott, visit and for more information on Structure-flex visit

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