Cliff Roles Photography

Cliff by Peter Hurley

I’m a Professional Event, Landscape, Performance & Headshot Photographer.

Tel.: +1 941 685-9017, based in Sarasota, Florida, USA

Member, Professional Photographers of America

I completed my schooling in Croydon, England, studied French, German and Russian in Birmingham, then moved to Cologne, Germany in the mid-Seventies to work first in the building materials trade and then as a sales rep for 3M Do-It-Yourself products. In 1984 I talked my way into a German music-publishing company and became a radio promoter, which served as a stepping-stone for the next 16 years of promoting over 130 of the world’s most famous rock and pop stars of the 80’s and 90’s. Elton John, Celine Dion, Bon Jovi, Metallica, Robert Plant, Lionel Richie, Donna Summer, The Scorpions, Def Leppard, Tears For Fears, Dire Straits and Kiss were just a few of the artists I had the privilege of working with as, among other things, Head of Promotion and International Marketing Manager of Mercury Records, Germany.

One of my most memorable recollections is watching the Berlin Wall in 1989 as it was being torn down, then accompanying Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters as he put on his legendary rock opus “The Wall” in July 1990 on Berlin’s Potsdamer Platz.

Around the turn of the millennium I bade the “biz” farewell and became a professional German/English translator, a profession that allowed me to work anywhere in the world. I had always loved visiting the States, and maintained an on-off love affair with Florida for the next 2 years before eventually arriving in Sarasota in 2001 on my birthday, February 17, while touring Florida on my Harley. I knew the second I saw St. Armand’s Circle that I wanted to settle on the Sun Coast. I met my wife Maria shortly afterwards and moved permanently to Sarasota in December 2002.

In 2003 I discovered my love of acting, and enjoyed roles in 1776 - The Musical, My Fair Lady, Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Bells are Ringing, How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying, Zorba, WillmS, Oliver, The Sound of Music, Murder at Cafe Noir, Got A Minute? Play Festival 2006, 2007, 2008 + 2009, Sarasota Actors Workshop, Theatre Odyssey, Always A Part Of Me, Laughter on the 23rd Floor, Candide, If The Devil Could Fall In Love, Little Women, The Pretender, Run For Your Wife and Caught In The Net at the Asolo Repertory Theatre, Players of Sarasota, Venice Theatre, Manatee Players, Golden Apple Dinner Theatre and the Backlot.

A further highlight was in February 2006, when I was asked to be Ringmaster of Circus Sarasota for its 2006 season. And I was pleased and proud to be the Ringmaster for its 2007 10th anniversary season, Celebrating A Decade of Excellence.

Never one to be at a loss for words, I joined WIBQ radio in September 2004 as host of my show Talk of the Sun Coast. From February to December 2007, I broadcast through Sarasota’s Community Radio WSLR, and then through March 2009 on local AM station WSRQ.

I am proud to be the recipient of the Sarasota County Arts Council 2007 Arts Leadership Award for Media. I won Best Suncoast Enthusiast and Best Local Actor in Creative Loafing’s Best of 2007 & 2008, and I was voted one of the top three in the category Best Local Actor 2008 & 2009 by the readers of Sarasota Magazine and the Readers’ Choice winner in the Sarasota Herald Tribune’s Curtain Call 2008 of Best Supporting Actor, Play for my performance as Val in the Golden Apple Dinner Theatre production of Neil Simon’s Laughter on the 23rd Floor. In March 2009 I was voted Best Local Charismatic Actor by the readers of SRQ Magazine in its Best of SRQ Local 2009. 

I am also very proud to have been voted Best Emcee/Auctioneer 2009 by Scene Magazine! 

 In 2009 I was voted Best Local Media Personality, Best Local Actor and Best Mixed Message by the readers and critics of Creative Loafing’s “Best of the Suncoast 2009″ poll!

November 2010: I was voted Best Local Media Personality by the readers and critics of Creative Loafing’s “Best of the Suncoast 2010″ poll!

February 2012: Voted "Best Photographer", Sarasota Herald Tribune 2011 Readers’ Choice Awards

February 2013: Voted "Best Photographer", Sarasota Herald Tribune 2012 Readers’ Choice Awards.

I became a citizen of the United States of America on February 14, 2014.

I’m a Professional Event, Landscape, Performance & Headshot Photographer.

It began as an accident in 2007. I was emceeing a large amount of Sarasota nonprofit events when a local magazine asked me to take a few pictures of attendees for their “black tie” pages. I discovered a natural talent for photography, and soon became the community’s premier event photographer, a reputation I am fortunate to still enjoy to this day. The social season lasts from October thru the end of May.

So every summer between June and September, I "go walkabout". It started in 2013, when I decided to discover more countries on my home continent of Europe and visited 15 countries in 50 days with a backpack and a camera. I published my book "Walkabout Europe" on the strength of this trip. 

A year later I took 3 months to cover the entire continent of Australia and New Zealand. 

In 2015 I went on a National Geographic tour of Cuba for 9 days, and two months later I traveled to China, Tibet and Hong Kong to diversify my portfolio. 

In 2016 I visited The Pacific Northwest, Bermuda, New York and New England.

Photographic courses taken in 2016 include "Headshot Intensive" and "Illuminating The Face" with Peter Hurley, as well as National Geographic's "Advanced Photo Workshop - New York City" with Joe McNally. 

In June 2017 I attended a "Dance & Performance Photography Workshop" in New Orleans with Zack Smith Photography, accompanied Circus Sarasota & Sailor Circus to Washington D.C. for the Smithsonian Folklife Festival, attended a course in North Carolina held by Nikon Ambassador Tamara Lackey, and traveled to Poland, Austria, Italy, Switzerland and Germany on my Walkabout 2017.

In June 2018 I traveled to Iceland for a landscape photography workshop with Dan Ballard Photography. On completion I flew to Bergen in Norway and spent a couple of weeks visiting Oslo, Stockholm, Copenhagen and Hamburg.

In October 2018 I went to New York to learn from Lindsay Adler at a Fashion Photography Intensive Workshop. 

June 2019: Yellowstone Wildlife Safari with Backcountry Journeys.

June 23, 2019: I accompanied high-wire artists Nik and Lijana Wallenda to New York to photograph their walk above Times Square.

December 2019: My "bucket-list" had always included the continent of Antarctica, so I took off the month of December 2019 to join Muench Workshops on the icebreaker "Ushuaia" and sail to Antarctica with over 70 other photographers and naturalists. On our return to Tierra der Fuego, a group of us flew to El Calafate and El Chaiten in Patagonia for 6 days. I ended my 2019 walkabout with a week in beautiful Buenos Aires in Argentina.

March 2020 - ? The pandemic.

All events canceled, so I decided to offer people “Coronicals”, a short “drive-by” photo session at a low cost that would best describe how they are spending this horrendous period. I post the photos on my Facebook page and in a SmugMug gallery, and send the people high-res versions of the photos as keepsakes.

August 20 - October 15, 2020: Walkabout 2020 in Europe. I started in Zagreb, Croatia and drove the coast through to Dubrovnik, also taking in Kotor, Montenegro and touching Serbia and Bosnia-Herzegovina on the way. 

I flew to Vienna, Austria, then took a train through to Venice, Florence and Milan in Italy. Then followed a visit to Zurich & Lucern, Switzerland, followed by Strasbourg, France, before I entered Freiburg and drove to Baden-Baden and Rothenburg op der Tauber/Dinkelsbuehl on the "Romantic Road" in Germany. 

I traveled north in Germany, hitting Heidelberg, Frankfurt and my old hometown of Cologne. 

Dortmund, Berlin and Hamburg followed, before I flew to Amsterdam in the Netherlands and subsequently flew back into the States in October.

8 Countries, 7 weeks and 6 negative COVID tests later, I returned to virus-stricken Florida.

December 2020: Voted "Favorite Photographer 2020" by

At the beginning of June 2021, I flew to Seattle and then drove to the Olympic National Park  in Washington State for a "National Parks Photography Expedition" Master Class.

June 16, 2021: Walkabout 2021 began with a flight to Athens, followed by 31 days of touring Greece. On July 17 I flew to Gdansk, then Budapest, train to Prague, flight to Belgrade, and then a flight to Munich, followed by a train to Cologne, then Berlin, and then Hamburg. On August 15 I flew to Budapest again, this time to meet up with my wife and view her new apartment. Had some wonderful excursions to Farkasfa, Szentgotthard, Miskolc and Lillafured, as well as a drive out to Lake Balaton. After ten weeks in Europe I returned to the States on Thursday, September 2, 2021.

My 2022 Walkabouts began in June with a visit to my birth-country of England to celebrate the Queen's Platinum Jubilee Celebrations in Londan. I managed to get squeezed in at Trafalgar Square among police, crowds and barriers, but nevertheless managed to somehow get photos of Kate Middleton, Camilla, Sophie and Prince Edward. 

I traveled to Olney in Buckinghamshire to spend a few days with my brother Andy and sis-in-law Sian, then flew from Stanstead to Pisa to visit the city and the nearby beautiful Cinque Terre.

July 2022: I flew to Bangkok to spend 2 weeks traveling North and South Thailand with a "G Adventures" Group. 

Cinque Terre, June 2022

"Knoxvile", a production of the Asolo Repertory Theatre, April/May 2022.

My Munchkins Azzi & Emmy aged 7, April 2022

Rainstorm at Sunset


"Walkabout Europe"

Ponte Vecchio, Florence, Italy, September 2020

Wollerau, Zurich, Switzerland, September 2020

Rialto Bridge, Venice, Italy, September 2020

Antartica, December 2019

Rovijn, Croatia, August 2020

Luzern, Switzerland, September 2020

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Hamburg Aussenalster, Germany, October 2020

Zagreb, Croatia, August 2020

Santa Maddalena, Cover "Professional Photographer", May 2019

Dubrovnik, Croatia, September 2020

Siesta Key South Bridge, Sarasota

Cologne, Germany, October 2020

Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany, September 2020

Fjordland, Milford Sound, New Zealand

Plitvice Lakes, Croatia, September 2020

Azzi and Emmy


Untitled photo

Aslin and Emery

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Professional Photographers of America

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