HE MAY now qualify for a free bus pass, but Rhodri Morgan is by no means a regular on public transport.
Nonetheless, the First Minister was captured aboard a service bus for a new portrait that will be unveiled today, as one of three celebrity photographs which will go on display at the National Museum in Cardiff.
Welsh international footballer Ryan Giggs and weather presenter Sian Lloyd have also posed for the new portraits, which are part of the annual National Photographic Portrait Commission.
Organised by the National Museum Wales, in conjunction with the National Portrait Gallery, the competition showcases the work of emerging young photographers in Wales.
Huw Davies, who grew up in Carmarthenshire, decided to take his photograph of Mr Morgan at Cardiff’s bus depot after being inspired by an Assembly Government policy.
“The reason that I chose the bus and the bus depot as the main location is that they strongly refer to some of Mr Morgan’s key policies in the more recent years of his career,” said Davies, who graduated from Coleg Sir Gar, Carmarthenshire, in 2006, and was AOP Student Photographer of the Year.
“The image of Rhodri Morgan on the bus is an exploration in the concept of journey, symbolising his journey as a politician and his empathy towards the older public. It is a dramatic portrayal.”
Giggs’s portrait was taken at Carrington, Manchester United’s training centre, on the day the star signed a further year’s contract with his club.
It was taken by Anastasia Taylor-Lind who, since graduating from the University of Wales, Newport, in 2004, has seen her work appear in national newspapers and magazines.
She was told she would have just 20 minutes with Giggs in a press office at the training ground.
“I panicked when I heard that as it’s not easy to do something creative in those circumstances,” said 26-year-old Taylor-Lind, who now teaches part-time at the university where she studied.
“But I ended up spending about 40 minutes with him and he was a lovely person to photograph. We also took some photos outside in the rain and he didn’t mind getting wet. I mainly work in Iraq but it was a fabulous experience to meet and photograph him.”
Ms Lloyd chose to be photographed at one of her favourite locations in Wales – Snowdonia. Amelia Kilvington took the photograph of the TV weather presenter.
Kilvington gained an English degree before graduating from the West Wales School of Arts, Carmarthen, in 2006.
Beth McIntyre, curator of prints and drawings at the museum, said, “National Museum Cardiff is delighted by these striking images.
“We had a wonderful response from recently graduated photographers this year and are thrilled with the results.
“The photographs are a welcome addition to our collection and are sure to be extremely popular among all our visitors.”
This year’s winning images join last year’s portraits of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, author Sarah Waters, Doctor Who scriptwriter Russell T Davies and an image of the then heavily-pregnant harpist Catrin Finch.
Text by Media Wales Ltd