Retirement ends decades-long era in press photography
Whether walking with Nelson Mandela, or capturing the grace of British royals or the wrath of a riot, prominent Bay photographer Mike Holmes has spent decades on the frontline of press photography.
Now Holmes, 62, has finally closed the shutter on four decades of newspaper photography – a phenomenal 37 years of which were spent shooting award-winning images for The Herald, Weekend Post and the former Evening Post publications.
Holmes, who photographed the likes of Queen Elizabeth II and her grandsons, said he had many fond memories of covering major stories of the day since he first joined the Bay newspapers in 1979.
His tenure with Times Media followed stints with Rapport and former Afrikaans daily Die Oosterlig.
“Spending time with [former president] Nelson Mandela was very special to me,” Holmes recalled.
He completed his photography studies at the then Port Elizabeth Technikon at the age of 21 before starting his career as a news photographer – often in the face of adversity.
“Photography has always been a passion of mine, especially news and sport, and then wildlife during off time,” he said.
Having covered major news events, including the Rhodesian Bush War, Holmes said his career had seen many ups and downs but that this came with the job.
“Big events as they unfold are always the best. You don’t have to set up anything, just follow it as it unfolds,” he