We met Steve loitering outside Hell Studios one Sunday afternoon whilst taking a break from building a set for a commercial we were shooting that week.
In the few minutes we shared with him we learnt that he was previously be a lecturer in Pure Mathematics at Melbourne University - before "unexpected things" happened in his personal life.
Although he didn't go into the details of what had happened, it was clear this event had thrown him into a downwards spiral that he had struggled to regain control from.
I knew from the moment I had met Steve I needed to photograph him, but to be honest- I was too afraid to ask.
Wishing Steve good day we returned back into the studio to continue building - and I immediately regretted not asking him. Rushing back outside I hit Steve up and he reluctantly agreed to be photographed if we were quick.
With only a couple of minutes up my sleeve I shot a few closeup portraits of Steve before he spotted the axe on the side of the set we were building.
"Do you want to hold the axe Steve" I asked, knowing deep inside me this could be terrible idea. His eyes lit up as he picked it up - and the feeling of dread increased in my stomach. Shooting ten frames before quickly regaining control of the axe and we were done.
Hand on heart, this is genuinely the only time I've ever been scared whilst photographing someone.
Thanks for not murdering me Steve, it's very much appreciated!