I can still remember the first morning I decided to head out at dawn. Layers of mist were floating above a field of dew coated barley. The sun was just rising in the distance and within seconds the whole scene was illuminated with an intense warm light. The barley sparkled as the sunlight lit the dew, and as the birds began to stir, there was an ever increasing echo through the mist.
Over the years since that morning I have strived to document those moments, from the serene to the dramatic. It’s not all been plain sailing; caught out on an exposed hillside one summer with a metal tripod as thunder and lightening shook the ground. Running for cover one winter as hail mortared the beach, unable to hear my own voice above the sheer velocity of the wind; even the odd sprint away from livestock! Mad moments, but great experiences.
I studied photography; graduated in 2007, and have worked as a photographer and digital retoucher ever since. Living in rural Norfolk has never seen me short of photographic opportunities along with trips to various regions of the UK.
In 2010 I was sadly diagnosed with two chronic illnesses; Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome and Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome. Life has had to change in a big way to accommodate them and it's nothing short of a challenge to say the least, but it’s amazing how positive we can learn to be when we have to.
I often get asked what gear I use, and what brands I’d recommend. So here's a list of the main equipment I use...
Fujifilm - I’ve been shooting with Fujifilm cameras ever since I tried out the original X100. I soon sold off my other gear and made the switch to Fuji permanently. Over the years I’ve used various bodies and Fujinon lenses from the range, and currently shoot video and stills with the Fuji X-H1 and lenses ranging from 12mm to 200mm.
iPhone - Is it a ‘serious’ camera? All I know is that some of my best selling stock imagery has been shot using Apple's smartphones. For that reason alone, it deserves a place on this list. I currently use the iPhone X and have to admit, the dual lenses are a delight to use.
Film - I learnt to shoot on film, rolls and rolls of the stuff. Days spent firing away and manually winding on each frame, loading the subsequent rolls in darkness and then spending hour upon hour in a dark room amidst the heady heights of chemicals under red lamps. From 35mm to Large format, it was a great way to learn photography, and trust me, I made many mistakes along the way!
These days, most likely nostalgia for the above, I shoot film with a trusty Olympus OM1; lovingly restored and still going strong. Films of choice? Kodak Ektar 100 and Kodak Portra 160.
Tripods - Gitzo (Lightweight and built like a tank, great for coastal or mountain shots in strong winds) Joby Gorillapods (various sizes. Perfect for attaching small lights to, or using as a makeshift shoulder rig when filming).
Bags - Lowepro (I’ve tried to use other brands, but I never get on with them. Lowepro on the other hand, well, they make perfectly ergonomic, comfortable, and well thought out bags. Just don’t get me started on how many I’ve owned over the years. Each have surved me and my gear very well!).
Computing - Apple iMac/MacBook Pro (great powerhouses to work with, and I’ve always been able to rely on Apple’s customer service when I’ve needed it).
Software - Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom (These cover the workflow for stills). Black Magic Davinci Resolve (my main go to for editing and colour grading video content).
Waterproofs/Insulation - Paramo Enduro, Velez, Cascada II, and Torres Activo (simply put, they just work. Warm, breathable, comfortable, quiet and fitted with hoods you can literally hide out a rain storm in. Tears or rips can simply be sown up by hand and then you’re good to go).
Boots - Meindl Borneo (I’ve had these leather boots for years, and they’re still going strong!) Le Chameau Vierzonord (These neoprene lined boots are comfortable and warm, ideal on those cold winter mornings and nights, and the soles are great for support and grip).