Allan Ballard began his photographic career at the London Evening Standard where he assisted the picture editor. He then assisted eminent fashion photographer John Cowan. Allan spent six months in New York working for American Vogue. During this time he documented the racial tension between the police and the black residents of Harlem for the Sunday Times. The now famous shot of the NYPD officer ‘pulling tongues’ in a momentary lapse ‘under fire’ was later adopted by he band Skid Alley for their album cover.