What is Fine Art Photography?
Posted on 14th September 2020 at 15:24
My journey as a fine art photographer
As a creative, I've always looked at ways to further my eye and develop my craft. That sometimes means taking time away from the business to give myself time and space. This is my journey to becoming a fine art photographer and explains why I think it's important for my commercial and family photography.
Creative Writing in South West France
My realisation that my photography is art and that it's my creative input that stands me apart from the crowd came when I took three days to join a creative writing course in South West France back in 2012.
We were staying an a beautiful run down ancient town house that I fell in love with, and I had gone with the intention of doing photography rather than writing.
However, that first morning when I woke with the larks with the sun streaming into my window, I was compelled to write before I started photographing. That precious time was really the start for me.
And taking that time out of my business to do something that would develop me creatively was hugely beneficial and is something I now endeavour to do each year.
Choosing a Mentor
I had already lined up a meeting with the brilliant photographer Kevin Wilson for my return, as I was wanting to explore the possibility of developing my photography and gaining a Fellowship at the British Institute of Professional Photography.
It was perfect timing, as I recounted to him my experience in France he turned to me and said, 'I don't think you want to do a Fellowship in Portrait Photography but do one in Fine Art Photography'.
And I said 'I think you are right!'
The sign of a good mentor is someone that listens and gets you, and is able to guide you. I was very fortunate that Kevin understood where I was coming from so quickly!
Exploring Fine Art Photography
Once I knew the direction I wanted to pursue I was able to do loads of research. I had worked out that it was old buildings that fascinated me and I spent most of that summer driving all over the country seeking out interesting buildings and photographing them.
I was developing my eye and my style, and enjoying every minute of it.
However, it was when I came across Victoria Baths in Manchester that I realised I had discovered and connected with the place for me.
I spent time researching the origins of Public Baths, and became a bit of a geek about it all! Even now I can recite some of the legislation that facilitated them coming into existence...and am still perturbed that what I thought was the ceramic hand rail was actually the scum trough before filter systmes were introduced!
Fellowship in Fine Art Photography
I went back to Victoria Baths in Mancester several times in order to create a collection of images that spoke of the building to me.
The Baths had been out of use for decades, but it is the most mesmerising place and when I walked into it the first time, I could almost hear the voices and splashes in the pool and smell the water. I really wanted to create fine art photography where you could see the impact it had on me, and could get a sense of what it was like there.
The wooden cubicles held a fascination with me because when I was a little girl in West London we used to swim in Acton's Victorian baths and I remember the cubicles really well...they were so big and cold and I was so small!
Some of the images I produced are abstract, some like record photography, and some have graphic design qualities to them.
I submitted my work to the British Intitute of Professional Photography for a Fellowship, which I was granted, plus I was put forward for Best Fellowship of the Year...a huge honour.
My work from this was made into a book and prints, which I have sold and sit in private collections around the UK and abroad.
Keeping my creativity alive and in my commercial work
So this journey of my fine art photography has continued, and has fed into my family portrait and business photography.
I find that I seek out locations and settings for my family clients that will enable me to create beautiful pieces of art for them to hang on their walls. It is a sense or feeling that they get from looking at the framed wall prints which generates an emotional connection for them, which I believe is the key.
When I work with businesses, it is my creative vision inspired by the conversations I have with the business owner that translates into photographs that bring their business to life. These images are used as branding photography for their websites or social media campaigns, and enable their prospective clients to really understand at a glance who they are and what they are about.
I believe it is my fine art photography that enables me to do this for my clients, and currently I'm doing painting and drawing to develop my eye in different ways.
Watch this space for what I do next!
Finding out more about how fine art photography fits with commercial work
So it's my view that as a professional photographer, I want to be constantly evolving and honing my craft. I work hard to ensure my creativity filters into my commercial photography as I believe my clients can only benefit from this, whether they are looking for family portraits or business photography. Being a professional fine art photographer in Windsor is a joy as there are so many inspiring locations that feed my creative juices!
If you would like to find out more about how I work, do give me a call on 07793 205155 or contact me
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