Thank you for taking the time to look around my website, this section will give you some background into where I am in my career as a photographer and some insight into how it all happened.
(WARNING - I do ramble on)
Photography had never been an interest of mine and when my girlfriend, Gemma, suggested buying a camera for a 30th birthday present I had in mind something like a point and shoot camera for holidays and family gatherings. However, she very generously gave me a beginner DSLR.
It wasn't long before people were noticing my photos and asking for photos of their children or to attend weddings. This gave me the first indications that this could turn into something more than just a new hobby.
Sophie Knight was a classmate at school who now runs a successful photography business with her husband, Alex, and when I was asked if I wanted to help them out at a charity golf day I was more than happy to oblige. The event was an eye opener into the world of event photography with valuable lessons and got to meet some ex-professional footballers and collect a few autographs.
As a gift to my sister, I photographed her wedding with no prior experience. Again, these first's teach you a lot of lessons. The main lesson that wedding photography isn't something you should take on lightly. I stumbled across Chris Chambers via a Facebook friend and my ideas about wedding photography altered straight away. His shooting style, use of off-camera flash and editing style showed me a side to wedding photography I'd never seen before. I booked onto a one-off workshop that he often runs at Hazlewood Castle. We shot in pre wedding, wedding, bridal and fashion sessions and ran through Chris' editing and workflow routines. A day where I felt lost with some of the experienced photographers around me blowing me away with their results. However, I didn't feel disheartened, I felt motivated and ended up editing some great images i had taken that day to a standard I never expected and went on to book a year of courses and workshops and second shooting with Chris to really raise the standard of my wedding photography.
My relationship with Alex Knight Photography has continued and having upgraded my camera I attended many of their weddings as a second shooter, focusing on the candid shots and alternate angles, but also picking up on the processes, routines and traditions of the day.
Shooting my own weddings alone is now something I am totally comfortable with and actually enjoy. Sharing this day with the couple and capturing the scenes, the moments, the emotions is incredibly fulfilling and delivering the images is immensely satisfying especially the feedback from the couples and seeing the comments on social media. This would never have been possible without the experience of working with Chris and Alex.
A great opportunity fell into my lap to be he official photographer of the Hallam FM Summerlive concert in 2014 and I couldn't pass it up. For such a big event to be my first concert photography felt a bit daunting but resulted with great photos and even surprised myself, so well I returned in 2015 to do it all again, with even better results. In a roundabout way this led to me becoming an event photographer for Doncaster Racecourse covering many of their race days, events and concerts such as Spandau Ballet, UB40, Madness and DJ sets from Vernon Kay & Jo Whiley including meet and greets with the artists and competition winners.
I volunteer my photography services to local cancer charity, the Eve Merton Dreams Trust, who fund and organise dreams for long suffering and terminal cancer sufferers and their families. I try to cover as many of their events as I can, to date these include charity football matches, the dreams (including a wedding), fun run, boat race and family fun day. And help them with graphic design on some projects too. This helps to build people skills, photography skills and do something positive for the local community.
All this has, up to now, been fit in around my day job of floor screeding, a job I have done for the last 10 years. On the 30th June 2015, I became a father and will soon become the main carer for my daughter, Georgia. This will mean photography will become my only trade and will be looking at ways of increasing the work I take on in this field to make a successful and sustainable future.