Photographic portraits of Chester’s cultural heroes sitting in the pictured chair will be unveiled at a launch event this Thursday (February 11).

Sam Ryley’s #OneChair Twitter project allowed the public to nominate and vote for those deserving recognition for their cultural and forward-thinking contributions to the city.

The acclaimed photographer then captured images of each individual sitting in the same leather chair.

Winning subjects include: Russell Kirk, creative director of the Midsummer and Winter Watch parades, Matt Baker, Theatre in the Quarter director and Andy Foster, of Andy Foster Architects and vice president of Chester Business Club.

Russell Kirk as the Jester in the St George's Day celebrations in Chester on April 23 2015

Plus there are 14 more individual portraits of culturally active Chester folk including chefs, promoters, ‘community heroes’, venue owners and events organisers.

This Thursday’s launch event will see the big reveal at 61 Watergate Street Row with the public able to view the portraits on Monday, February 15.

Alongside the exhibition Sam has invited Andrew Davey of design firm Reasonably Good to run a non-commercial co-working experiment and workshops, entitled 'Industry', for the duration of the residency.

Creative experiment

Sam said: “We want people who work in the creative industry to come down and work in the space, meet each other and collaborate. We also want students to come and interact/work with creative professionals and also business people and the public to come and see their creative industry in action.

“It took a long time to get the right kind of space for the exhibition, but we have opened a lot of doors now and hopefully the project can influence some more pop ups and creative ideas to make the city more exciting and attractive for cultural ventures in the future.”

Chester-based photographer Sam Ryley

The Chester-based photographer and film-maker, who is originally from Hebden Bridge in West Yorkshire, was delighted when Autumnwatch Extra recently featured his footage of short-eared owls on the Dee Estuary.

Sam, who shot a video and stills on the Wirral side of the estuary, sent the images to the popular BBC show who used the whole of his four-minute-long film plus his photos tagged on the end.