I am a York based, national award winning, freelance photographer with both the intuitive ability and technical knowledge to make great pictures. My love of photography started back in my teens with an Olympus film SLR. While photography featured somewhat in my years at art school, I am for the most part self-taught and the learning curve has continued from the dark room days of my teens through to the demands of our ‘instant’ digital age. While I will photograph anything that seizes my attention and sparks my imagination, I mostly love to photograph people. I take great pleasure in capturing genuine, spontaneous moments that portray the essence of a person or event. Consequently, my style is very natural. I work with available, natural light as much as possible, but know how to render the artificial light of flash “invisible” when need be – to retain a natural look.
In my work as a wedding photographer I work largely with a documentary, or reportage, approach – capturing moments as they unfold before me, but can balance this as required with more formal, posed work. Often throughout the day there is a fluid movement between approaches, as I also like to interact with my subjects – I am after all there by invitation and part of your day – while at other times slipping into the background to take a “fly-on-the-wall” approach. I love to photograph people and take great pleasure in capturing genuine, spontaneous moments that portray the essence of a person or event. There’s a song by Mark Germino called “Caught in the act of being ourselves.” That song title kind of sums up how I would like my clients to appraise my images of their day.
My earliest influences in photography were Man Ray, Bill Brandt and Henri Cartier-Bresson. While professionally I mostly shoot weddings, I also love street photography and particularly look for moments of ambiguity and interesting juxtapositions of subjects. A good street photograph may often result from finding an interesting location with strong compositional elements and then waiting for someone to walk into the scene. Which can often be very much an exercise in patience… I’m often amused (though also often frustrated) when I have the camera to my eye and an interesting scene before me, waiting for the key subjects to arrive, only to lower the camera to find a small crowd of people watching me, waiting for me to take the shot so they can pass in front without “spoiling” my picture…!
I try to take the philosophy and practice of street photography into my wedding work and have been particularly influenced by Jeff Ascough and Joe Buissink, who I regard as the best wedding photographers in the world. Wedding work is challenging on many levels, particularly having to think about very technical things like shutter speeds while simultaneously building a rapport with your clients. I love the challenge of coming up with fresh creative ideas and hope to be able to continue this work long into the future.
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