Roger Harvey


Roger won a scholarship to the Coventry College of Art, now Lancaster College, which he attended from 1949 until 1953. Roger specialised in portraits and landscapes and was awarded his Diploma.

After leaving College, Roger joined the RAF and served with Fighter Command, stationed at RAF Duxford. Whilst in the RAF, Roger became known for his sketches of life around camp and was commissioned to paint a portrait of President Roosevelt for the mess. Roger left the RAF in 1957 and worked for Shelford Corn and Coal Company, where he worked alongside companies such as ICI, McDougalls, Spillers, Fisons Plc, and Shell and played cricket regularly for McDougalls on several occasions at Fenner’s, once scoring 57.  Roger was headhunted into various management roles around East Anglia and spent time working on the Continent. During this time, Roger used his expertise to help in the graphic design departments to produce promotional materials for these companies and kept up with his love of photography.

In 1970 Roger was asked to move to Spain by a French ex-colleague to do illustrations and photography for a property business that had been set up. Roger played a lot of tennis and golf in Spain and it was through the connections he made that he started painting portraits of people playing sports which led to a commission to paint David Duckham to commemorate the award of his MBE. This painting was featured on the cover of Rugby World and seen by George Best’s agent, who commissioned a portrait of George. The portraits then escalated; Roger soon had an international reputation as a sports portraitist.  Anyone who was anyone in the sporting world wanted a portrait with commissions coming from Glenn Hoddle, Alan Ball, Peter Shilton, Trevor Francis - the first player to be sold for £1,000,000, Ray Clemence, Steve Coppell, Mick Mills with the FA Cup, Nick Faldo after his victory at the PGA, Ian Botham and David Gower. Roger was invited to exhibit at the Tryon Gallery in Dover Street, London, which featured some of the above portraits and a new painting of John McEnroe.

In 1980, Roger was commissioned by Hitachi, the then sponsors of Liverpool FC, to paint “We Are The Champions”, a 66in x35in oil painting that hangs at Anfield today, to commemorate their winning The League Championship Cup. This in turn led to commissions from Kenny Dalglish, Ray Wilkins, John Lloyd and Chris Evert after winning the Ladies' Plate at Wimbledon.  Chris gave Roger the tennis shoes in which she won the 1981 Wimbledon title as a thank you.

Believing this success could not continue, Roger decided to move away from painting and gained his Associateship in General Practice at both the British Institute of Professional Photography and the Master Photographers’ Association and started a highly successful photography business winning many national awards for his portraits, including eight Fuji Platinum Photographer of the Year Awards, and undertaking many fascinating commissions from BMW, Volkswagen, South Crofty Mining, the Tate Gallery St Ives, various parts of the Plessey Group, Kodak, Siemens, Lovells and The Kier Group. Roger was a founding member of the Kodak Cherubs Scheme, photographing children in their first year and by the time he retired in 2009, he had photographed in excess of 30,000 children! as well as weddings and family sittings.

In 2009 Roger retired to Walsham Le Willows in Suffolk, where he rekindled his love of painting.   He now operates out of a small studio at his home producing beautiful oil paintings of local landscapes, seascapes and portraits of both people and animals and exhibits his work in East Anglia, where his professional career had first started.