Committee Members

Dr Afzal Ansary ASIS FRPS (Chair)

All my professional life I have worked in Medical and Scientific Imaging and have over 50 years of experience. I trained at St Mary’s Hospital Medical School, London and studied Scientific Photography at the Polytechnic of Central London (now University of Westminster). After working at Guy’s Hospital Medical School, London in 1971, I established and headed the Department of Medical Illustration at the University of Zambia for 18 years. I also served as an Honorary Consultant to the National Council for Scientific Research, Zambia. Besides my academic qualifications, I am  an Accredited Senior Imaging Scientist (ASIS), Emeritus Fellow Bio-Communications Association, Registered Medical Illustration Practitioner (RMIP) and I hold six Fellowships in Medical, Scientific, Biological Photography and Microscopy. I am  the principal author of the book ‘A Colour Atlas of AIDS in the Tropics’ which won the RPS Medical Group Lancet Award in 1990. I have also presented and published several papers.

I have been a member of the RPS for over 45 years, with keen interest in medical and scientific imaging. I am the Regional Organiser for the North West. I am member of the Science Committee and Chairman of the  Imaging Science Qualifications Board. In 2013 I was Awarded the Fenton Medal and Honorary Life Membership of The Royal Photographic Society.

Bob Tapper ASIS FRPS (Hon Secretary)

Bob joined the NHS in 1976 when he trained as a medical photographer at the Medical Illustration Department, University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, under the guidance of Professor R.J. Marshall. He moved to London in 1979 where he worked in various departments in the capital. He is currently Head of Medical Illustration at the recently formed Barts Health NHS Trust.

In the early 1980s Bob became a member of the Medical Group. During his time he has had many positions on the committee including exhibition convener, EFSI representative, archivist and, over the last decade, Honorary Secretary. He is a conference convener together with Professor Francis Ring for the “Advances in Medical and Forensic Imaging” conference which is held every two to three years.

As well as the Medical Group, Bob also serves on the RPS Science Committee. He is a member of the editorial board of The Imaging Science Journal, and also a member of the Imaging Science Group and the Historical Group.

Gary Evans ASIS FRPS (Hon Treasurer)

Gary Evans gained a BSc in scientific photography at the Polytechnic of Central London before joining the photographic industry as a technical advisor. Since 1991 he has worked at the Science Photo Library, the world’s largest specialist stock agency for images of science, technology, medicine and the natural world.

He has worked on several internationally renowned exhibition projects, including designing and curating the prototype of “From Earth to the Universe” for UNESCO in 2008, an exhibition of astronomy images subsequently seen at over 1000 venues in more than 100 countries, and was a selector for the first IISE in 2011.

An outspoken advocate of the power of images to communicate science with the public, he also remains an active photographer. Current projects include an exploration of extremely long exposures in daylight on monochrome film, stacked focus macrophotography and taking digital pictures though his new telescope.

Becky Smith  (Committee Member)

I first gained an insight into Medial Photography while studying at the University of Westminster on the Photographic Science course.  I enjoyed various opportunities whilst studying, including experiences in both Medical and Forensic Imaging. I completed work experience at Great Ormond Street Hospital and also a year long placement at the Home Office Scientific Development Branch running a research project.

When I graduated in 2008 I considered both the forensic and medical routes. An attractive trainee position became available in the Cotswolds and I successfully applied.  Following the famous Dr Foster I began my career in Gloucester, becoming fully qualified in 2010.  The role was dynamic and I Iearnt a lot, developing a particular interest in ophthalmic photography.  Looking to develop a specialism I secured a post at Moorfields Eye Hospital, London where I have worked for the past two years.

At Moorfields I have been able to extend my knowledge of ophthalmic conditions and I have continued my interest in research by investigating novel imaging techniques.

Professor Norm Barker ASIS FRPS (Co-opted Corresponding Member USA)

Norm Barker is a Professor of Pathology and Art as Applied to Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University, School of Medicine. He is Director of Pathology Photography and Graphics Laboratory at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. A graduate of The Maryland Institute College of Art, he also holds a M.S. from Johns Hopkins University in education as well as a M.A. from The University of Baltimore in publications design. He specializes in photomicroscopy and macro photography. He is a fellow of the Biocommunications Association. His work appears in textbooks, journals and museums worldwide. His photographs are in the permanent collections of more than forty museums including The Smithsonian, The George Eastman House, The American Museum of Natural History, The Nelson-Atkins Museum and The Science Museum in London. He has published 6 books and numerous scientific articles. His new book collaboration “Hidden Beauty: Exploring The Aesthetics of Medical Science” shows the beauty of medicine and the human body and will be going on a museum tour in 2014-2018, the first stop, The Mütter Museum in Philadelphia.


Juliet Chenery-Robson (Co-opted Member)

I am a visual artist/photographer/academic based in the north east of England. I have a strong interest in exploring the terrain that juxtaposes the visual arts and science, particularly medical science. For the past eight years I have researched the visualisation of the invisible illness ME through a Photography MA, Arts Council England grant, and an AHRC funded, Photography PhD at the University of Sunderland. My PhD thesis explores different methods of using metaphor to visually represent  ME’s physical, social, medical, and political invisibility through a combination of photography, text, audio, SenseCam, family album photographs, and Google Earth images. It was during this research period that I developed a particular interest in the fundamental importance of medical photography, both its value as a diagnostic aid and also its ability to raise awareness and understanding of complex illnesses.

Exhibitions and presentations have included the National Museum of Singapore, the Royal College of Art, Newcastle University Medical Sciences facility, Sunderland Festival of Photography, Durham Art Gallery, and Great Ormond Street Hospital.

Prior to my academic/visual arts career I utilised my NCTJ (National Council for the Training of Journalists) qualifications by working as a freelance and staff photographer, writer, and editor for newspapers, magazines, and public relations companies. I am also currently a trustee for the charity ME North East.

Hoosain M Ebrahim ASIS FRPS (Co-opted Corresponding Member South Africa)

Hoosain M Ebrahim has been the Director of the Dept of Medical Illustration at Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University, South Africa since 1992.

He has Fellowships of various professional bodies and has been awarded Honorary Fellowships of the Institute of Medical Illustrators and the PPSA whom he served as president for two terms as well as the Education Officer for 27 years.

He has received many honours and recognitions including the British Medical Journal Award for “Kirlian Photography in Medicine” , Technical Award and Medal for developing a  technique “Comprehensive Gait Recording in Parkinson’s Disease Patients”, both awarded by the RPS Medical Group, and a Certificate of Appreciation from the South African Police Service for compiling a Forensic Photography Course to promote professional training and the optimal utilization of photography to investigate and solve crime. In 2010 The Royal Photographic Society awarded him The Society’s Member’s Award and Honorary Life Membership. He is on the National Board of Registration of Medical Illustrators in the UK.

He has presented 233 papers and 20 posters at various conferences and meetings locally and internationally. He has presented many papers at meetings arranged by the Imaging Science Group of the RPS. He established a selective course in Medical Photography during 2005 as part of the 3rd year medical curriculum currently offered at Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University. He is a member of various academic committees of the University and Faculty of Health Sciences. He is an active member of many professional organizations. His hobbies include Marklin trains and building miniature Victorian dolls houses.