This site presents my work over more than thirty years, from my beginnings as a photographer and writer in Australia to my present special interest, the publication of historical photographs of Asia.
The journey has seen books and many other publications and projects. Through the years, the crafts of photography and writing, and in more recent years publishing, have been my lodestars. Creative ventures depend on the advice, support, skills and friendship of many others: associates, photographers, writers and publishers; technical experts, photo scanners, imaging houses, designers and printers; and always there, encouraging and reinvigorating, family and friends. Credits lists my sincere thanks to all who have helped.
Welcome to the site and enjoy exploring it. For those contemplating a future of creative work, especially in the visual arts, I hope my journey may encourage you to embark on your own. Below the book jackets, scroll down to photos and my bio.
The opening of the August 2017 Singapore Lee Fook Chee exhibition, sponsored by the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in Singapore and held at The Arts House: Mrs Carrie Lam, Chief Executive, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government (centre) toasts the exhibition, together with (left to right) Mr Bernard Charnwut Chan, Foundation Patron; Ms Sim Ann, Senior Minister of State for Culture, Community and Youth, Singapore; Mr Chen Xiaodong, Chinese Ambassador to Singapore; and Edward Stokes, Foundation Publisher and exhibition curator.
Ed in Hong Kong, 2016 – today one of the authors, and the publisher, for The Photographic Heritage Foundation’s books.
Edward Stokes in central Australia, 1986 – photographing his book on the transcontinental expeditions of John McDouall Stuart. Photo by Rogan Coles.
Edward Stokes Bio
For over thirty years Edward Stokes has produced and published books. Since 2008 he has been the Founder and Publisher of The Photographic Heritage Foundation, a body which publishes Asian historical photos. Edward is a photographer, writer and also a publisher. His books have been strongly received and reviewed. He has also originated many other publications, including illustrated articles, ‘how to’ books and calendars.
In 1997 Ed had established and ran the Hong Kong Conservation Photography Foundation, a prior not-for-profit body which operated until 2008. Its primary role was to originate books about nature conservation. Edward completed various Hong Kong nature books, publishing six for the HKCP Foundation.
His most significant and influential two Hong Kong books are Hedda Morrison’s Hong Kong (2005), which presents Hedda Morrison’s then unknown photographs of the territory in 1946 – 47; and Hong Kong’s Wild Places (1995), his landmark book that explores the relationship between ‘man and land’, from first settlement to today. Both were translated into Chinese, and both were recognized for their integration of photos with rigorous texts – the hallmark of all of Ed’s books.
Edward has been a photographer and writer since 1984. Prior to moving to Hong Kong in 1993, in Australia he had photographed and written six books, most with the support of Australia Council or other research and writing grants. These included his pathfinding photographic-oral history, United We Stand, and his photo-led exploration trilogy. Ed photographed and wrote six extended features for Australian GEOGRAPHIC. He collaborated with the National Library of Australia, which holds his Australian manuscripts, book materials, photographs, oral history recordings and transcripts.
Ed Stokes was born in Australia and grew up in Hong Kong. After time as a Cadet Midshipman at the Royal Australian Navy College, and his stint in Hong Kong as a ‘cub’ reporter, Edward studied Politics, Philosophy and Economics at Magdalen College, Oxford. Before he turned to photography and writing, he was a school teacher, in London, Sydney and outback Australia. His last two school posts were memorable: teaching children on remote sheep stations by radio, from School of the Air, Broken Hill; and running the ‘one-teacher school’ at Pooncarie, in far western New South Wales. There, two hundred kilometres from the nearest town: a tiny school-house, ten vibrant children – and Ed’s cattle dog, the school mascot.
Website concept and texts: Edward Stokes
Website concept and design: Graphicat Limited
Website Updated: March 2018, Cloud Access Asia
Image scanning: Color Six Laboratories Limited
Text and compilation copyright: Edward Stokes
Photo copyrights: see Credits