Hello and welcome to my first blog of the year.
2022 was a busy year for me and I am hoping that 2023 follows suit…My plan this year is to write a more detailed account of what I do and where I do it, alongside some of the fabulous folk who I get to spend my time with. Plus, I will be bringing you my Top Tips regarding all thing’s photography.
So, grab a cuppa, some chocolate (Christmas chocolate is always calorie free) and join me in a cold-weather ramble and my first ‘Top Tip’ of the year…
Baby, it’s Cold Outside
I’m not a fan of this cold stuff – I am much happier with the sun on my face, sunglasses on, while sipping something deliciously cool and made from grapes – but I have donned my fingerless gloves and am channelling my inner sun-goddess as I type.
I know that the warmer seasons soon come around, but I really could spend these cold days under the duvet – I genuinely could just hibernate from the world.
Last February, we had a brilliant weekend right at the end of the month, and I have everything crossed for a similar life-enhancing event to take place again this year.
What’s the best part of taking photographs?
So many people ask me what my favourite part of being a photographer is and the answer tends to follow the same theme. People – I love capturing real people living real lives and all that that entails.
More often than not, clients tend to be uncomfortable in front of the camera because they have usually been the ones to take the photographs, rarely featuring in them.Regardless of the why, these people can be awkward when we first meet, with wooden smiles and stiff shoulders and I get it, because I too am rather uncomfortable in front of the lens.
As we move through the shoot, watching a client relax and actually enjoy their time is hugely satisfying. It’s a connection built on trust and as they relax, their personality shines through.
One of my standout moments has been during a boudoir shoot. The client had lost her husband and had been given the shoot as a gift. As we chatted about what her session I felt that sadness emanated from her, however, as we started to choose outfits there was fun and laughter in her face and she lit up when talking about her family.
Halfway through the shoot, she was more than comfortable in front of the camera – happily showing off her figure in her undies. Following the shoot, we looked through the resultant photographs together. ‘You have captured my soul,’ she exclaimed. I was immensely proud that I could show her the woman that her friends and family saw.
(Photo not from above shoot.)
Following my own advice
I am much happier behind the camera because that is my safe place – its where I can relax and thrive but having watched my clients bloom in front of the camera, I have also taken the plunge and factored in photographs of me on my social media.
Whether I am working or spending time with clients I have found the process rather cathartic.
Top Tip 1: - How do you choose the right photographer?
Never mind the fact that it can be daunting – it can also be a bit of a minefield.
Because, and let’s be honest here – the photographer may have all the latest equipment, but if they have the charisma of a washing machine or recoil-triggering BO, you are not going to want to spend any time with them.
So, how can anyone choose the right photographer for their particular type of shoot? What sets apart one photographer from the crowd? Cost, style and location are obvious counterparts here, but I would argue that it is always a step beyond that.
Whether family to commercial or headshots to boudoir, creating photographs that you are going to want to look at year after year requires more than the knowledge of handling a big camera.
In my experience, communication is where it’s at and what stands between the poor, or average and the truly breath-taking in the world of the photographer.
The ‘right’ photographer will take both the time to get to know you, what kind of photography you are looking for and your expectations. The results will speak for themselves with photographs that will be happy to gaze at time and time again.
In other news…
Life is still hectic for us all, but we have happily settled at my fathers-in-law and are rather enjoying the wonders of living opposite a pub.
My studio at Canal Side Studios continues to be my happy place and following an abundance of shooting happy families in the studio in the run up to Christmas, I am doing some branding and headshot work, which often involves pets.
I did a fabulous cat shoot as well, but more about that in my previous blog.
Remember, the colours that nature provides are given to us as a way to cope with these bleak months and although it is cold, there is that whisper of Spring in the air. Try to get out and enjoy the daylight.
Keep safe and smile my friends. Wishing you a wonderful rest of January.
Next month’s blog: Love is in the Air!