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Issue 4 - Creative Light


The Guild of Photographers W

hat an exciting month the Guild is having as we are seeing the culmination of a lot of hard work over recent months. So much is happening it’s difficult to know where to start when writing this.

steve & lesley thirsk

A new Guild website is being launched this October, and built into it is a powerful Search Engine with quite stunning listing opportunities for members.


Connected to this ‘upgrade’ in Guild services is a new FREE service for members – A very simple to use but powerful online backup facility for members PC’s or Macs with unlimited storage and bandwidth! It automatically updates in the background protecting member’s files. What’s more they can be viewed and downloaded from any web browser anywhere. There is also the option to use our new Back-Up ‘Plus’ service. With this, not only will files be protected, viewable and downloadable from any web browser, they can actually be edited too with any changes you make online updating on your base PC’s / Mac’s automatically, regardless of where you are working from! We’ve also upgraded the cover given in our ‘Pro’ Membership package. Since we launched it 12 months ago members have had a free debt recovery service, contract dispute support, Loss of Earnings cover, Data Protection cover, Employment Protection, a confidential 24/7 legal helpline and much more like Tax Investigation cover (which on it’s own typically costs more than the Guild’s Membership does) . Now in addition to this members get ‘Crisis Cover’, i.e. 24/7 access to a PR expert’s helpline for advice about the best way to respond to negative publicity or

Steve Thirsk media attention following an event which could cause reputation damage to your business, plus financial help up to £10,000 to pay for professional PR services if the situation needs. Mediation cover is now included too and, following submission the Guild has been approved by insurers to provide that mediation support if appropriate. In fact, we believe we are the only authorised photographic association on the relevant list. Even the defence of motoring prosecutions and legal costs and expenses arising from identity theft is now included in our membership, which now offers even better value for money than ever. We are also delighted to welcome two new Panel Members to the Guild’s Team this month.

Creative Light - Issue 4

One of these is Donal Doherty from Northern Ireland. Donal has only been involved with photography for 4 years, and is the current Professional Photographers Association of Northern Ireland Fashion Photographer of the Year and Creative Photographer of the Year. We actually ‘found’ Donal when we were exploring options to assist members who may need a structured yet affordable way to develop their business. Donal previously spent many years working on marketing and PR for some of the world’s leading super-brands, has been shortlisted as Entrepreneur of the Year and Outstanding Young Communicator by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR), plus he is the current Business Man of the Year. Donal is keen to help businesses to grow their market share, and has devised an on-line business programme specifically for photographers called ‘Engage’, which members will now get access to at a generously discounted rate, and he is already working closely with us to develop other exciting business related opportunities solely for members. The second new Panel Member is Claire Elliott, who is very well-known and well-respected Guild member. Claire is a very special Newborn, Baby & Children photographer, has attained the distinction of Guild Craftsman.

and Baby genre. Clare will bring her experience in mentoring and training too. Speaking of Newborn & Baby photography - Over the last few years the photographic community has seen a huge growth in this area, which has some quite specific skill sets, including Health and Safety requirements. With that in mind, we have decided to launch the Guild of Newborn & Baby Photographers as a stand-alone arm within the Guild. New logos have been created for those who work in this area, a new specific assessment process has been devised, and a Code of Conduct is being introduced, to ensure the child’s safety is paramount at all times. It should be exciting times for those involved in this area, and who knows this may be the first of several new arms within the Guild? On top of all this we have now linked in with Photovision to offer high quality training workshops at their coming Trade Shows, starting with two by Kate Hopewell-Smith and Andrew Appleton at the pending Brand’s Hatch event. More details about all the above follows in this edition of Creative Light along with lots of other exciting articles about inspirational photographers. Enjoy the read!

Claire is based in County Durham and is already supporting and advising photographers involved in the Newborn

Want to join The Guild of Photographers? follow the link and get in touch with us today! Lesley Thirsk

Issue 4 - Creative Light


Editor As the nights are drawing in, cold weather is approaching the Winter Weddings are looming in the wedding photographers calendar. Car shots with so many variations I thought I would share one of my personal ‘winter wedding’ favourites. I love the crispness and sharpness of he chrome against the softness and beauty of this gorgeous bride, captured whilst she was in the car keeping warm as the last few guests to made their way into the Church.


t’s October already! In this edition of the Creative Light Magazine we have some great articles from our very own Guild Members - Karl Redshaw who shares with us his passion for Motocross, Ad De Ste Croix who shares with us the emotive subject of photographing a friend’s funeral and the introduction of two new panel members. Nikon Ambassador and Documentary Wedding Photographer Mark Seymour talks to Creative Light about his photography. We give an insight into his Documentary Wedding Photography and his belief that this type of photography needs to be recognized by the Trade Associations. And finally, we are delighted to announce the five winners of the ‘Summer’ competition see the winners in the magazine.

julie oswin

If you have a story you would like to share with Creative Light, then please get in touch by email to the following address –


One doesn’t stop seeing. One doesn’t stop framing. One doesn’t turn it on or off. It’s on all the time! - Annie Leibovitz

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© Julie Oswin MCGWP FBIPP

Issue 4 - Creative Light


Front Cover

sam hayward

The story behind Sam’s great shot which bagged him a Gold Bar in the Guild’s Image of the Month competition Locally to Sam is the Buck’s Railway Museum and Sam wanted to create a themed shoot based in the era of the 1950’s. After obtaining permission from the Museum Sam approached his good friend Kate to ask her to be his model/victim for the photo-shoot. Incidentally, Kate loves to dress up in this style. Permission granted and knowing that the train he wanted to use was non-operational Sam set to work. To achieve that ‘authentic’ look Sam decided that he would bring along a few smoke grenades . According to Sam they had quite a lot of fun with the hilarious behind the scene shots with the smoke grenades, especially as they seem to have had ideas of their own. Smoke is probably one of the things in life that you just can’t control. However the perseverance paid off. The image Sam created that is on the front cover works perfectly. Fabulous capture Sam.


I was so delighted that this image received a Gold Bar but then having it chosen by Julie for the front cover has made it even more special” Sam Hayward Creative Light - Issue 4

Contents features 10 12 32

Donal Doherty - Engage! The new Guild’s online Business Training

44 52 60 66

Kevin Pengelley Posing Hands

Photovision Mark Seymour Documentary Wedding Photography

Karl Redshaw Motocross Photography Countryside Walks Adam de-Ste-Croix Photographing a Funeral

monthly 16

Steve Thewis Digi Steve Photography


Precept Optimum Performance Sales Coach and Training


Hallam Internet Digital Marketing

Issue 4 - Creative Light


New Panel Member “

Life is precious. We only have 28,000 days to live and love!�

D donal doherty

onal previously spent many years working on marketing and PR for some of the world’s leading super-brands, and went on to start-up his own consultancy, helping businesses to communicate with their stakeholders and to grow market share.


He has been short-listed as Entrepreneur of the Year, twice as Outstanding Young Communicator by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations, and as Business Man of the Year. He helps businesses to communicate with their stakeholders and to grow market share. Four years ago Donal followed his passion for photography and using his experience in driving business forward he is now in demand for commissions on a global level. His brand is known for excellence, and he has travelled as far as Australia, Mexico, and across Europe for weddings. His work is regularly featured in leading bridal magazines, especially

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in Northern Ireland where he lives. He is also the current PPANI Fashion Photographer of the Year and Creative Photographer of the Year. Photo-Pro magazine refers to him as ‘One of the UK’s and Ireland’s Best Wedding Photographers’. He has a strong interest in helping other photographers, hence Donal writes regular columns in Magazines and has released a best-selling book, ‘Engage! Social Media Marketing for Photographers,’ which empowers photographers to utilise social media to drive sales and deliver a remarkable customer experience. A regular speaker, Donal tours the UK with Photovision Road-shows and the world with workshops to help photographers to create a business and life they love. It’s this desire to belong to a photographic community and help other photographers that has drawn him to the Guild. He’s a really nice guy! As he’s now on our Panel we asked Donal to reveal a little more about himself Donal’s philosophy is that “Life is precious. We have 28,000 days to live and to love”. In his words here are some of his moments spilling from a life lived…. “The time I fell off the bike with my brother and needed stitches. The love and loss of a mother. The first kiss in a game of spin the bottle. The disappointment at failed exams. The achievement of passing them. Making friends in Sweden. Buying my first house in Belfast. Moving to London and working in the sky (28 floors up in the Gherkin). Taking my first photography course and finding my passion for capturing life better. The moment on Tom and Lorelie’s wedding day that I decided I wanted to be a photographer for the rest of my life, and of course, falling in love”. Donal has fallen in love, he gets married next year!

Issue 4 - Creative Light


Engage - Online Business Training for Members


ou will have seen that Donal Doherty has joined the Guild’s Panel…The Guild actually ‘discovered’ him when looking for a way to respond to the needs of members who are in business. We were looking for the best possible business training resources to help members businesses to grow and develop.

donal doherty

You’ll have seen on the previous pages which introduce Donal he has an incredible business background having worked for Super-brands and receiving much acclaim in the business world. He then brought those skills to the photography world when he decided to become a full-time photographer, and in just 4 years he has established himself in such a way that he has global demand – In the past year he has shot 45 weddings in 9 countries, as well as multiple baby, family and portrait sessions.


He is, of course a great photographer, but that alone is not enough if you want to operate a successful photography business skills are equally important! Many photographers are amazing at the art of photography, but struggle with the art of business.

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e are delighted that Donal is more than willing to share the business skills that he has learnt and brought so effectively to photography! He has created ‘Engage’, a business course specifically for photographers developed to help create a business and a life you love. The beauty of the course is that it is delivered in easy to understand ‘bite-sized’ pieces and is online, with a new episode released every 2 weeks.

THE COMPLETE COURSE HAS THREE MAIN SECTIONS: THE BUSINESS PLAN COURSE This has been designed to inspire and educate you. Once you have watched all episodes and completed the tasks outlined in each episode you will have created your own business plan. It covers everything from pinning down your vision to identifying a niche, market research to pricing and much, much more. THE BRANDING COURSE This will help you to understand your why, craft your identity, roll out your collateral and shoot for your brand. The information provided will enable you to create a brand that will be irresistible to your target client. Donal shares his brand story and you get the inside track from branding experts on how to create the ideal brand for your photography business. THE SOCIAL MEDIA COURSE This will provide you with the skills to master social media marketing. Each episode presents an insight into a wide range of social networks including Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, LinkedIn and Youtube, in addition to looking at a number of the latest social networks. Donal shares the strategies he used to grow a 29,000+ following on Facebook and will highlight how to grow your influence on other platforms. It reveals how to utilise social media as part of a low cost marketing strategy to provide an excellent customer experience, raise awareness, grow your audience and drive sales. If we were to say that the complete on-line course cost £75 a month I’m sure most would see that as very fair. However, each new episode is actually available to Guild members for the ‘price of a cup of coffee’. You now have access to this superb training resource with proven success at an exclusive rate of just £75 for the year! To take advantage of this incredible offer, simply visit the Guild website’s new ‘On-line Business Training’ page (once logged in) to subscribe.

Issue 4 - Creative Light



Guild to work

with Photovison

steve thirsk



he Guild of Photographers now to work with Photovision!

In an exciting new development the Guild will taking a high quality training programme around the UK at unbelievably cheap prices as they are not for profit events. This will take place alongside the highly regarded Photovision Trade Shows, meaning that attendees will not only benefit from the training but they will also get the opportunity to meet key trade suppliers. This initiative is being launched at the Brands Hatch Photovision show on 21st October, and a full programme is prepared for the events in the New Year. On the next page are our speakers at the pending 2014 events. Tickets start at just ÂŁ16.50 which can be obtained from here (subject to availability of course)

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Photovision is the title of some extremely popular and sociable one day Photographic events now

stretching across twelve different locations in the UK and Ireland, attracting thousands of Photographic Professionals. We say events because the days are so much more than a Trade Show. Of course, there are lots of key and innovative Trade suppliers to be seen (many of which have special offers valid on the day), but lots of new visitor attractions have been added to the days – The Guild’s workshops being the latest. Other attractions include a Photographers Equipment Fair, a Live Studio Area, a Turning Pro Advice Centre, a Cameras and Equipment Area, Printing Zone and a Photographers Work Gallery as well a Camera Cleaning facility. There are also FREE seminars including – •

How to Double Your Money from weddings with Mark Cleghorn,

A Big Modifier Lighting demonstration by Padraic Deasy,

How to Kick Start Your Bookings by Donal Doherty,

Turning Pro by Mark Cleghorn

The next 2 events are at Brands Hatch on Tuesday 21st October and Epsom Racecourse on Tuesday 11th November so do come along! What have you got to lose as admission is FREE. For more details about Photovision visit ‘their website’

Photovision Equipment & Technology Show Tuesday 21st October 2014, Brandshatch Circuit, Mortorsport Vision Centre, Fawkham, Longfield, Kent DA3 8NG Seminars Start at 10am • Trade Show 11am to 4pm

Photographers Equipment Fair

Used photographic equipment for sale at the show Used equipment bargains listed on our Kent webpage

Studio Area Live

Seminars & Live Demos

Your chance to try out all the latest studio equipment with backgrounds and a live model.

Weddings - Mark Cleghorn Big Modifier Lighting - Padraic Deasy Kick Start Your Bookings - Donal Doherty Turning Pro - Mark Cleghorn Lighting - Viewfinder

Featured Exhibitors

Sell your photo equipment for FREE. Details on our Kent webpage.

This is your FREE ticket to the show. For fast track entry bring it with you on the day.

Star Attractions

Cameras & Equipment Used Equipment Fair Turning Pro Advice Centre Camera Cleaning Printers Wedding Albums Software Live Demos Discount Vouchers On Our Website Sponsors

For more information visit Issue 4 - Creative Light


Brands Hatch

Kate Hopewell-Smith Posing People Brands Hatch - Tuesday 21st October 2014 10:00am - 12:30


2.5 hour session covering how to pose people, and get the best from them! This training session will show you how to put your clients at ease in front of the camera, and will reveal all the tricks of the trade to get the best from your clients as well as how to pose them.

Most of us photograph people in some capacity, so this is a do-not-miss event. Also, for those in business, this could help to generate increased income, for by getting the best results, the potential of repeat business and recommendation is obviously increased. Kate represents the rapidly developing lifestyle genre, as well as specialising in weddings, portraits and boudoir. She is a regular contributor to photography magazines including her monthly column for ‘Professional Photographer’, where her role is to be a relevant voice for contemporary photographers and particularly for ladies in the industry! Her approach is based upon her fine art background and she is one of the UK’s most sought after trainers. She is also a Panel member for the Guild of Photographers, and recently she became one of only seven Nikon Ambassadors in the UK.

Andrew Appleton Speedlights - Fast Track Tutorial Brands Hatch - Tuesday 21st October 2014 14:00 - 16:30


n under three hours Andrew will show you how to make the most out of one speedlight both on and off camera - in fact you will be surprised how much you can achieve without getting involved in complicated off camera systems.

During the tutorial he will show you how these shots were created using just one speedlight and a few simple techniques. We will cover both manual and auto modes plus hi-speed flash synchronisation. We will also have a brief look at using white balance to correctively and creatively. Andrew Appleton trained in photography at Brunel University in the mid 80’s, turning professional some years later, and is now a Panel member for The Guild of Photographers and an internationally sought after speaker and trainer. He specialises in photographing people, both in the studio and on location, and his work has been published in books and magazines from the UK to North America. Andrew is highly regarded for his comprehensive and creative programme of training courses and workshops which he delivers across the globe, including at Africa’s massive ‘photofilmexpo’ event where he was a key speaker attracting audiences of 500 plus at his seminars.


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Donal Doherty ‘Shooting For Your Brand’ & Achieving ‘Fun, Natural & Editorial’ Photography Epsom - Tuesday 11th November 2014 10:00am - 12:30


his workshop has two very distinct elements. It is very much Photography based but also has an important built-in business element too, as ‘Branding’ is clearly very important for anyone in business.

Donal will show how you can use just 3 brand words to influence you - both when you shoot and when selecting images for your website and marketing materials, keeping your brand consistent throughout. Donal will then demonstrate how he purposefully shoots for his brand words, which are .. Fun, Natural, & Editorial! He will reveal how he gets the most of people in front of the camera – getting them to relax, interact and respond how he wants to get the best ‘Fun, Natural & Editorial’ shots…Expect some simple but very effective tips and tricks to be revealed. So if you want to know more about ‘Shooting for your Brand’ and/or how to get people in front of the camera to relax, interact and respond how you want this is the workshop for you! Donal spent many years working on marketing and PR for some of the world’s leading super-brands. He has also been short-listed as Entrepreneur of the Year, twice as Outstanding Young Communicator by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations, and as Business Man of the Year. Four years ago Donal followed his passion for photography and using his experience in driving business forward he is now in demand for commissions on a global level. He is also the current PPANI Fashion Photographer of the Year and also their Creative Photographer of the Year, and has just joined the Panel at the Guild of Photographers. He also writes columns for Magazines and has released a best selling book, ‘Engage! Social Media Marketing for Photographers,’ which empowers photographers to utilise social media to drive sales and deliver a remarkable customer experience.


Issue 4 - Creative Light

Your imaging partner, always.



Creative Light - Issue 4

Issue 4 - Creative Light


The Guild’s new Website New Guild website to be launched. This month we’re hard at work taking the Guilds online presence to the next level! We’re currently having our website redesigned with a much keener focus on showcasing and discovering our members. The new site will have a completely new look centred around member’s brilliant photography, with a fully overhauled search engine to help people find members with ease. We’re looking to improve the site not only to better inform visitors but to help members show off their images with a clean, professional Guild profile.

steve & lesley thirsk

You can expect to see more exciting updates to the digital side of the Guild as we work to provide a great online experience for all our awesome members.


The Back-Up ‘Plus’ service adds a virtual drive to your base PC’s / Mac’s where you can put the files you need access to the most. Any put there, are of course, stored on your hard drive as normal, but they’re also copied securely online. The best bit of this service is that not only can these files be viewed and downloaded from any web browser - They can actually be edited too, with any changes you make online updating on your base PC’s / Mac’s automatically, regardless of where you are working from! This can even be done on more than one PC / Mac so the files are the same on each of them with the changes you make on one machine updated everywhere almost instantly!

New FREE unlimited online back-up service for all Guild Members The Guild always aims to provide its members more, so coming with the new website is a very powerful online backup facility at absolutely no cost to you! What’s more there are no limits on storage space or bandwidth! Our system will keep a copy of all the files you want securely online! What’s more you can view them and download from any web browser anywhere. It’s really simple to use and once activated, you can literally forget about it, for it automatically updates in the background protecting your files.

The Back-Up ‘Plus’ service For those that want even more than the above we can also offer a Back-Up ‘Plus’ service for a small additional charge. With this you will never need to e-mail files to yourself, or carry portable hard-drives or USB sticks around with you

Creative Light - Issue 4

Š Sarah Jewel

Issue 4 - Creative Light


Guide to local SEO Rainu is a Digital Marketing Executive at Hallam Internet, providing digital marketing expertise to a number clients in a range of industries. Having studied Marketing at university and Digital Marketing with the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), she has built and developed skills in search engine optimisation (SEO), email marketing and social media on both the client and agency side. 

Hallam Internet | Digital Marketing Agency


hallam internet

s photography businesses, we often work locally. Integrating local SEO as part of your digital marketing strategy will help improve your company’s visibility in your local area.


Carried out correctly, local SEO will help people who are in your local area or people that are searching for your service in your area to find you quickly and easily, resulting in more targeted traffic to your website. Here are 7 tips for getting started with your local SEO strategy:

1) Register your company with Google My Business. The Google My Business Tool can help you manage your online presence with Google. It can be used to increase the visibility of your business in Google search results, Google Maps and Google Plus. To sign your business up to Google My Business, visit click ‘Get on Google’. You will need to enter your business information, making sure you enter your full business address, postcode and phone number. You will also need to verify your business address, in order for any changes to appear.

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2) Add your business address and phone num-

rankings in results pages.

ber to your website

6) Get links from industry specific authorities

In order to improve your visibility in local search results, Google needs to understand where you are located. It is therefore important that your full business address (including your postcode) and phone number is placed on your website. You may even want to think about adding your full business address to the footer of every page, emphasising the significance of each page of your site to local searchers. Don’t forget, your address and telephone details should be consistent with those you have used to sign up to Google My Business.

3) Use location relevant keywords within your website’s content Talk about where your company is located and the areas you serve on your web pages, in order to be found in local searches or by people searching for photographers in your area. You will need to optimise the pages on your site to include the relevant local place name you would like to appear for in search engine results pages.

4) List your business in relevant industry directories No matter what sector you operate in, you will be able to find a wide range of niche directories that you can list your business in. For the photography industry, consider the following:

Having links from authoritative organisations within your industry can help improve the perceived quality of your business’ website. If you are a member of a professional body, you should pursue links back to your site from them. For example, if you are a member of the British Institute of Professional Photography or the Society of Wedding & Portrait Photographers, you should be listed on their website alongside your contact details and a link to your own website.

7) Get positive reviews of your business online Having a diverse review profile across the internet can help improve your online presence. Search engines like Google love user generated content, so you should consider how easy it is for your customers to leave reviews online and where they might be leaving them. The quantity, velocity and diversity of customer reviews is becoming increasingly important, and shouldn’t be taken too lightly. If you follow these steps, you will be well on your way to local SEO success. On the next page you will see a diagram your Local SEO Clock. Rainu Bhele Hallam Internet

• Free Index • • The Photographer Directory It is also good practice to look at sites your competitors are listed on too, and add your business to these. Having your business listed on relevant, high quality directories will help improve your visibility in local search results, as it emphasises your location to Google. Remember that quality is more important that quantity, and you should take your time to ensure your name, address (including your postcode) and phone number are consistent across all your listings.

5) Get links from local websites back to your website. In SEO, having links from another website to your site, acts as ‘vote’ for your website, which can boost your visibility in search engine results pages. Links must be relevant and can come from a variety of sources, for example, you may be a member of a local association or you may have taken part in an event for a local charity. Having these local websites include a link to your website from theirs, can improve the quality and relevance of your site, therefore improving your

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Issue 4 - Creative Light


Guild of Newborn & Baby Photographers T

he Guild of Newborn and Baby Photographers is born!

steve & lesley thirsk

The Guild started its history in the 1980’s as the Guild of Wedding Photographers, but over the years it developed a much wider appeal and therefore introduced the Guild of Professional Photographers to cover all other genres for those in business, as well as a section for the enthusiasts not in business.


Over the last few years the photographic community has seen a huge growth and development in Newborn & Baby photography, with new exciting approaches. Many photographers now operate solely in this area, and concentrate on developing and refining the specific skill sets required in that role. For obvious reasons there are also some quite specific Health and Safety requirements in this area. The Guild will always evolve and develop according to need, so for these reasons, we have decided to launch the Guild of Newborn & Baby photographers as a stand-alone arm within the Guild, and new Guild of Newborn & Baby Photography logos have been created for those who work in this area. By doing this we have been able to define the genre, create some quite specific assessment processes and cover Health and Safety related expectations. Within the Guild we clearly have some talented Newborn & Baby photographers, and many rapidly developing their skills, so some exciting times lie ahead for those involved in this area, combined with extra reassurance for any parents seeking the services of such a photographer. Opposite are some recent examples of the fabulous work we have seen from Guild members.

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he very highly regarded Mark Cleghorn from ‘The Photography Academy has coincidently just released a new DVD relevant to the bump to baby genre called ‘Me & My Bump’. To celebrate the launch of the Guild’s ‘Newborn and Baby’ section he is kindly offering this DVD to all readers for just £25 instead of £75!

Here are the details:

Me & My Bump After over 25 years of shooting maternity Mark Cleghorn brings you his “Me & My Bump” video. This DVD explores the session variety and styles as well as beyond the basics of marketing and building a maternity business model as well as products and pricing. Mark also talks about selling the concept and product to generate higher sales. During the session which is split into 4 parts, Basic, Sensual, Retro and Personal, Mark shows and explains the lighting set-ups, the posing and animation for believability during a live client session. As a bonus on the DVD there are unique codes to give you two FREE downloads on step by step posing for maternity, which are featured on The Photographer Academy website Academy’

Contents Include: The Session - Lighting & Posing The Business of Maternity Sales & Selling Tips DVD Run Time 88 minutes

Should you wish to take advantage of this great offer please either just visit the Guild’s website THIS OFFER EXPIRES ON 30th NOVEMBER 2014 Issue 4 - Creative Light


New Panel Member “

Claire Elliott you are the most amazing woman. After a long day at work this is one amazing parcel to come home to. Nine amazing photos of my gorgeous girl, I can’t thank you enough”


laire has been interested in photography ever since she saw her dad create ‘magic’ in his darkroom as a small child. Always being an artistic person Claire studied graphic design, photography and fine art at college before finally deciding that photography was her calling. She turned professional in 2001 shortly after giving birth to her third child (Claire and her husband Peter have four children).

claire elliott

Such was Claire’s rapport with small children and babies that the business grew rapidly.


Claire opened her Studio ‘Forever Memories’ in Country Durham in 2004 which she has now run with her husband Peter for 10 years. Claire truly believes that ‘We don’t just take photographs - we make memories’. She believes this is why professional photographers should be as good as they can be, and invest time and effort into self-development, something she has done for many years and will continue to do in the future. It was at a training course by Paul Haley, which she was attending for her personal development that Claire was introduced to other members of the

Creative Light - Issue 4

Guild and decided to join. She sees joining the Guild as one of the best business decisions she has made. On joining she immediately got herself immersed in mentoring with both Paul and Julie Oswin, who identified her obvious talent and nurtured it. During her first year of membership Claire attained Qualified status and was the runner-up Portrait Photographer of the Year in the People/Portraiture section. Not only that she achieved one of the highest scores in the competition to date securing over 50 points in just 9 months. A remarkable achievement, as anyone who enters will know! Her understanding of light is incredible and her post production skills are excellent, however it her natural capability to get young people to engage with her which was seen by the Judges as her ‘trademark’. Few photographers anywhere can come close to her in this aspect. It is her gift! In just her second year with the Guild she achieved her ambition of becoming a Craftsman. She’s well known within the Guild, but what many member’s won’t know is that she has achieved all these things despite the fact she has a truly shocking memory, a penchant for wearing fluffy slippers around the studio for comfort while she creates beautiful and creative babies and children’s portraiture! Claire is by nature, one of life’s giver’s, so her journey is something that she would love to share with others. After running a very successful and rewarding business for 10 years, and achieving what she has with the Guild so quickly, she now wants to help other members take that same path and gain similar rewards along the way, not just in work but all aspects of life. . • Attended Darlington College or Art and Design 1993-1996 • Studied for 2 years Photography and Art Graphics but concentrated on Photography in her final year. • 2013 Qualified Member of the Guild of Photographers • 2013 Photographer of the Year Runner-Up • 2014 Craftsman of the Guild of Photographers

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Š Claire Elliott CrGP


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PRESENT Present your client with a unique USB or print box product. Personalise with your details for a truly professional finish. Your images, your brand.




SHARE We’ve never shared more! Use a digital credit to create an online gallery and slideshow so your client can easily view and share their images on social media. Each share is a social success for your business.

SELL Let your digital images keep on selling! Let your clients and their family and friends easily purchase print products from the online gallery1. It’s selling made simple. LoCall UK: 0845 0800 750 Ireland: +353 1 4570 244 Issue 4 - Creative Light 1. Print Products will be available for sale from the online gallery from Jan 2015.

29 You can select which products you wish to offer and set your own prices.

One Stop to Picture Perfect Controlling your image colour quality in stills and video

If you’ve ever had the problem of shooting the same subjects over the period of a day using multiple cameras and in varying lighting conditions but yet still have to arrive at a consistent end result, the guys at Datacolor may have just saved you a lot of time and heartache. Never more obvious than when shooting Weddings where the bride and groom can lead you through the joys of shooting in a poorly lit church with a range of stained-glass diffused lighting, candles and in the worse cases... bar heaters! The group scenes invariably involve decamping to the outside and whatever natural light is available and then finally the inside shots for the reception deliver you into yet another lighting set up with a possible coup de grâce of an evening disco to complete the lighting extravaganza. If you are using multiple cameras and also shooting video across the same range of conditions then you really are giving yourself a potential nightmare for making sure everyone looks equally tanned in all shots and it doesn’t look as if the bride has had four changes of gown as she appears to be in ivory in one set of shots and beige in another etc. With so many variables it’d be nice to have an easy way to set some control over what you’re doing, allowing you to match different cameras, deliver a neutral white point for shots (where needed) and control your contrast across your entire shoot. Fortunately new to the market is Datacolor’s SpyderHD, the top of the line Spyder product. This clever bundle of invaluable elements puts you in the driving positioning. Fortunately new to the market is Datacolor’s SpyderHD. This clever bundle of invaluable elements puts you in the driving position from the first shot of the day to the last viewing of the end stills and video.

Control your Capture First off the shiny metal carry-cased Spyder HD delivers the perfect portable device for setting white and grey points for stills and videos. The SpyderCUBE is a highly pocketable version of a grey card but avoids you having to worry about it becoming creased, stained and worthless when compared to conventional foldable cloth or paper cards. This little gem, as the name suggests, is cubic in shape and only about 4cm (about an inch) in length per side and allows you to balance contrast for your shot like no other solution on the market. Despite it’s compact nature the SpyderCUBE gives you larger blocks of grey to use as targets than most conventional cards, with two of the cube’s faces split between a 96% White and an 18% grey triangle. Provided you can see both of these two-toned sides when the cube is either hung or tripod mounted into your shoots, you have a perfect target to set grey balance irrespective of the direction of any lighting or even if it’s changing. Once you’ve shot the SpydrCUBE simply choose the lighter one of these split sides to use in setting the grey balance and then use the black face 30 Creative Light - Issue 4 and white quarters to set your highlights to the 96% white and shadows to a 4% black.

Any out of gamut scintillation (100% white and over) or 100% shadows should only appear on the ball atop the Cube or in the hole at the centre of the black face respectively. The pocketabillity of the SpyderCUBE means it should always be available to shoot and doesn’t require a major feat of positioning first to get the angle correct as conventional cards would do. Simply pull it out of its bag, hang it in the scene or use a mini-tripod, shoot and away you go.

Before SpyderCHECKR

Control the Colour When you need to do more than simply set white balance and control contrast for your shots but instead control all the colours across your shoot’s spectrum, allowing you to get that dress, skin tones and any other important hues just right, then the SpyderCUBE’s big brother the SpyderCHECKR comes in to its own. This multi-coloured target comes in a highly robust plastic case about the same shape After and size as a tablet computer. Intentionally not as pocketable as the SpyderCUBE it’s fold-out design is ideal for shooting from a distance and in particular for group scenes. Tripod mountable or simply held or leant into your location at some point in the shoot, the SpyderCHECKR comes with plugin software for most image capture solutions (e.g. Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, Adobe Photoshop or Hasselblad Phocus) and enables you to set up a calibration preset with the touch of a button to linearise all your shots. As the software knows what each colour swatch should be it can instantly calculate a calibration across the spectrum to remove casts and bring all colours into alignment in virtually any lighting condition. Don’t worry though, you don’t need to ask your brides, grooms or models to hold the SpyderCHECKR - as long as you shoot the target at some point in the same lighting conditions that any group of shots is taken in, you can apply the calibration to the whole group later on.

Controlling the Retouch Once you’ve gone to the trouble of removing colour casts and linearising all your images to appear to be in the same lighting conditions you’d be rather defeating the object if you now start retouching and adjusting colours on a non-colour managed screen. Fittingly the SpyderHD comes with the latest top of the range SpyderELITE HD screen calibrator as part of the system. This ultra-accurate device simply plugs into your computers’ USB sockets and allows you to calibrate connected screens by running the easy to use Mac or PC software. Once run you can retouch your images safe in the knowledge that ‘What you see is what you get’ at least as far as colour is concerned. Working with soft proofing profiles from your print houses or output devices then puts you in control to see how your images will output on virtually any combination of paper, ink and printer.

When showing your work Ignoring how your images may be printed, frequently the most critical environment (certainly for any Wedding Photographer) is the final viewing with the clients. If what appears on screen doesn’t tally with expectations you’ve a lot of back-tracking and persuasion ahead of you. Having already used the SpyderELITE HD within the kit to calibrate your retouching screens you can feel assured that colours here will look spot on but courtesy of the accompanying SpyderWEB holster and calibration DVDs or Blu-ray discs you can now also calibrate the largest of TV or Video playback displays to make sure your stills and video colours match superbly as well. So it really is just one stop to get your Pictures looking perfect. Datacolor SpyderHD is available from most major camera retailers and online at the Datacolor Webstore (

Issue 4 - Creative Light


Documentary Wedding Photographer “

It’s exciting for me to capture the feelings and emotions of a scene as it happens, leaving an everlasting image of a treasured moment”.

mark seymour



ark Seymour is a Professional Wedding Photographer, 70% of his client base being the Jewish community. He creates images with a unique style which is inspired by the increasingly popular genre of Documentary Wedding Photography. He is one of six UK Ambassadors for Nikon, an Ambassador for ‘Smug Mug’ as well as an Ambassador for Loxley Colour. Mark’s work has brought him to be one of the most well known photographers in the Jewish market. A professional photographer for over 20 years and some may say he’s been taking photographs for nearly all his life (proof being that there are pictures of him holding a camera at just four years old). His style of ‘editorial story-teller’ manages to relate to the viewer a whole story within a single frame or a succession of frames creating chapters, taken throughout the wedding day. The art of Documentary Photography evolves a ‘fly-on-the-wall’ approach, capturing the whole day with little or no interaction with the bride, groom or wedding guests. Mark’s choice of lenses means that he needs to be very close to the action too, so he is be able to capture moments within a wideangled frame. He typically uses a Nikon 35mm, 50mm and quite recently the Nikon 58mm lens. A lot of the time, Mark will also use a 16mm lens - so

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you can appreciate how up close to the subject he really gets. Of course this style of photography also offers it’s problems as the general public aren’t used to a photographer at wedding who isn’t’ telling the guests how to stand, where to put their hands or when to smile, so often guests can’t get their head around what Mark is actually doing. Mark however, ignores them and finds that if he starts the day like this then everyone simply gets used to the style and relaxes into the day and forget that he’s in the background capturing the day. On average, Mark will take anywhere from 3000 to 5000 images per wedding due to ten to 14 hours he will work in one day. Jewish weddings are large with the biggest celebration happening in the evening with the dancing, so many images must be taken to insure the perfect moments are captured. It’s understandable as this particular photography style does not evolve any shots being posed or ‘set-up’ which you would find with classic wedding photography styles. Around 10% of these images will then be selected for the client’s viewing and editing is minimal. Photoshop is only used when he needs to straighten slightly, increase contrast or adjust the exposure. Predominantly, Mark will use Lightroom when creating his selection for the


Bride and Groom. Due to this large volume of imagery that is required and the long working hours, Mark insists on taking a large amount of equipment with him to each wedding to ensure up-most professionalism as well as being prepared for every eventuality. Mark takes inspiration and influence for his particular style through many formats. He has an extensive collection of photography books with most of them based upon documentary photography. Competition entries for other photography organisations and Documentary style forums also give inspiration for him too, along with up and coming photographers who are new to the documentary style and who are delivering fresh ideas, dynamic approaches as well as pushing the boundaries of wedding photography. Concerning his own website, which was designed by himself, Mark is constantly adapting, editing and updating. He is highly conscious of SEO and making sure he is all the right words in all the right places as nowadays, photographers are forming out of highly IT savvy individuals. You may be a fantastic photographer, no matter of which field but you have to been seen by the public. All customers buy what they see, and this is paramount for Mark. He ensures his website is the best reflection of his work and is also easily accessible. Word of mouth and his website are Mark’s main

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ways of advertisement. There are no ‘paperadverts’ and he does not use ‘pay-per-click’ almost every job is a recommendation. He will also stand at Jewish Wedding Fayre’s and has a contact at a Couture Wedding Dress House who recommends him to their clients. Almost two thirds of Mark’s cliental are Jewish and that has stemmed from simply photographing a couple of Bar Mitzvah’s during his earlier documentary work. His work stood out and was noticed as something fresh and completely different to anything other photographers were doing for Jewish celebrations at that time. Word of mouth is apowerful concept and not to be underestimated - Mark has grown his business and evolved his photography to a point where he is extremely well known and highly sought after within the Jewish Community as well as others. For the future, Mark wishes to take develop his skills and knowledge into training - to lead others into the genre of Documentary photography, showing them the creative freedom and dynamic results it has to offer. His advice to those starting out in photography professionally, is to “get a mentor, develop your style, remember the fundamentals of photography and to never stop learning, adapting and evolving...”.

continued p38

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Š Mark Seymour


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Issue 4 - Creative Light


- Mark Seymour continued from P35


How do you relax?

I live alone in a large house with a beautiful garden, I love to sit outside and work in the peace and quiet and drawing inspiration from it.

Q: What do you find the most difficult with being self-employed?

DISCIPLINE! Facebook is a terrible distraction!

Q: What has helped you succeed in Photography where others have failed?

Developing great contacts enabling numerous recommendations.

Q: Three words that describe your work? • • •

Unobtrusive Story-telling Black and White

Q: One fact about you? I have three sons, one of which has followed me into the industry


What’s your proudest moment?

Being awarded the Nikon Ambassadorship

Q: Pet-hate at weddings? Guests using their iPads and phones during the proceedings, they don’t take part of absorb the emotion - they just view it through a screen or have the viewfinder glued to their eye! Julie Oswin

To find more of Mark’s work have a look at his website and blog.


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TOP TIPS WHEN EDITING YOUR IMAGES South West Photo Mounts, as Jorgensen's UK Business Partners, have always been actively trying to give good solid advice and help to our photographic clients ever since we began almost five decades ago. Whether you're a Wedding, Portrait or Newborn photographer we are always here with help and support.

Can you be more effective with your editing and are there any tips from someone who knows?

In the previous issue of Creative Light we talked to some of our respected and talented Jorgensen Photographers who shared their experience and tips when it came to photographing a wedding. This issue continues this, so having bagged your wedding images what's the next step?

Well the simple answer is ... Yes, and we knew exactly who to ask. If you have been to any of our stands at SWPP or popped along to one of our workshops here in Devon, then you might have met Marko Nurminen in the flesh. We have been working with this mild-mannered, talented man for several years and have recommended his expertise and service to many of our photographers, who have asked for help with Lightroom, Photoshop, JAD or their image editing workload. So we gave Marko a call and he kindly sent over his top tips as well as a few examples of before and after images, which he has edited for his photographer clients.

1. Always shoot in Raw. Shooting in Raw will give you greater flexibility when it comes to editing your images. That's because Raw captures all the image data recorded by the sensor when you take a photo. When shooting in a format like JPEG, image information is compressed and lost.

4. Use a calibrated good quality monitor. This is essential if you are a professional. SWPM offer the ColorMunki range of pro calibration devices. These will give you a broad range of options and control, to ensure the colour you see is the colour you will get. I use a NEC SpectraView Reference.

2. Get the exposure right in your camera. This is very important as it helps to get better, healthy and glowing skin tones. Although you are shooting raw files, having the correct exposure gives you a great starting point.

Many people use an iMac as their editing computer. In my experience they are usually very bright out of the box. If this is the case there is a great risk that your prints will be coming back too dark from the lab.

3. A little bit of Photoshop skills will come in handy; using actions and droplets help to get the repetitive tasks sorted.

5. Know what colour space you are using; this is important no matter where the images are going to end up.



In this year's Guild magazine we have taken the opportunity to impart some of this experience and help, rather than just use this area to promote an offer or simply show products. We feel that in this way we perfectly reflect the type of business we are. One that gives you the photographer, a great customer service experience as well as interesting and exciting Album and Presentation product solutions.

P ho to g ra p hy by C o l in Ba te



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6. Make sure the LCD display at the back of your camera is not too bright. The brightness of the camera screen should be the same level as your monitor. To ensure this, take a picture with a good range of different tones, make sure it's a JPEG. Load it into Photoshop or Lightroom and compare the image with the one displayed on the back of your camera. Alter the camera screen brightness until the images match. 7. Consistent lighting conditions in the ‘editing’ room will give you a more consistent look to your images, I have white blinds, light grey walls and use lights that have white shades and daylight bulbs in them.

10. Using social media while editing will add time to your work process. Don't get distracted whilst you are editing your images. Stay focused! But don't forget to take regular breaks from your screen. Whilst editing some photographers check over every batch of 10 to 15 images to ensure they have maintained the overall feel and consistency of the job. This is imperative when it comes to capturing a wedding for example. Once edited, you want the Bride's dress to appear the same colour in all the images you have taken throughout the day. That is unless she changes out of it of course!

9. Check the skin tones are pleasing. Have a look at your own arm for reference; is it purple or orange, is it realistic and natural looking?

Thanks to Marko for his insight and to the photographers who allowed us to use their images. Marko can be contacted at or





Ph ot og r aph y M ar t y n N or s w or t h y

8. Good knowledge of Lightroom work flow is useful as there are endless time saving functions and pre-sets available. For example, try holding down the 'W' key in develop module to access your white balance picker.

11. And finally, get test prints from your Lab. SWPM always ask new photographers to send samples of their images so that test prints can be produced. They print one set that is colour corrected and another that is reproduced directly from your files. In this way you can compare them to your screen to ensure everything matches and that you are happy.

Ph oto gr aph y b y L i s s C an ni ng s

To find out more about Jørgensens complete range of Albums & Presentation Products, visit or call us on 01803 668380. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter. SOUTH WEST PHOTO MOUNTS ARE JØRGENSENS UK PARTNER - - 01803 668380

Issue 4 - Creative Light


Dealing with the

precept optimum performance

hidden DECISION maker!


Precept Mentoring Group specialise in helping ambitious business owners maximise their sales through the use of simple and easily learned techniques. The business was founded by Phil and Ginny Atherton in September 2005 and has coached over 150 businesses since then. The Precept training is based on the latest thinking in the world of sales and sales process, but also adds in key elements of psychology into the way we make our buying decisions.


hen you are talking to potential clients there are often multiple people involved in the buying decision.

If you are talking to a couple about their wedding there are a host of other people who will have something to say about the choice of photographer. The bride’s mother will want to be sure her daughter gets the best quality service possible, while the bride’s father is probably thinking about how much this is all going to cost. Then there are the bridesmaids who want to be sure they will look good in the photos. That’s not to mention all the friends and relatives who know someone that “would do a brilliant job”. In the commercial world you will often be talking to the marketing manager of the business, who has to get the MD to agree to her choice of photographer. In some cases you will be dealing with the marketing agency and you won’t even get to meet the client till the day of the photo-shoot – assuming you get the work. In a perfect world you will be able to meet with all the decision makers and explain to them personally why they should buy from you. Remembering the lesson from our last article (How to get customers to buy) you will also recognise that each decision maker will have their

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own buying motivations and you will be able to speak directly to those motivations. However, it is rarely a perfect world, and you will sometimes be faced with the situation that someone is involved in making the final decision and yet you have not been able to meet them and communicate with them directly.

What to do? The hidden decision maker is one of the biggest reasons given for losing business – after price (and price is very often not the real reason). Dealing with them is a key to successful selling in any industry, but especially in one where the value of your service is very hard to quantify. Understanding some of the psychology that drives our behaviour can be very useful here. In particular, recognising the power of Cognitive Dissonance can help you improve your conversion rate significantly.

the hidden decision maker is/are, then you can arm your prospect with the information and the motivation to sell on your behalf.

Step 1. Ask a question such as “In addition to yourself, who will be involved in deciding who to hire for this engagement?”

Step 2. Ask further “What concerns do you think they will have?”

Step 3. “Do you think that I am the best person for this job?” to which they will almost certainly say yes. If they don’t you have an opportunity to establish why they are not convinced and hopefully to then convince them.

Step 4. “So what do you think you will say to [that person] to convince them to hire me?” You can then coach your prospect in the best way to sell you.

Step 5. “Can we agree a date when I can contact

Cognitive Dissonance is essentially the uncomfortable feeling we get when we behave in a way that is not in tune with our personal values. We determine our values by deciding what we want other people to think of us.

you and see how the decision has gone?” Now the prospect knows that not only will they feel bad if they don’t promote your case, but they will have to face you and tell you that they failed.

So – how do we use Cognitive Dissonance in a sales situation?

Not everyone will keep their commitment to you. After all, there are some people whose personal values are to be dishonest, and they too will feel uncomfortable if they don’t behave in keeping with those values. But most people will. And getting most people to promote you to their hidden decision makers will get you more business. Just think of all the times that you have been told “It was [my wife/husband/mother-in-law/boss] – I wanted to use you”. If two thirds of those had gone your way, how good would business be right now? This is a simple technique to apply. That isn’t the same as being easy. Any new technique or skill requires practice, but if you persist with using this technique for 30 days you will definitely see an improvement in your close rate.

The key to this is understanding that most of us want to be seen as honest and trustworthy. We all recognise the value of being trusted and so we want others to trust us. Because we make being honest and trustworthy personal values we feel very uncomfortable when we behave in a way that is not in tune with that. So, if we promise to do something, most of us will go out of our way to then do it. Let’s look at an example. I have to thank Robert Cialdini for this really powerful demonstration of the effect Cognitive Dissonance has on our behaviour. Around 15 years ago Gordon Sinclair had a problem in his Chicago restaurant. He was taking lots of bookings for tables but was also suffering from a high rate of no-shows, meaning he had empty tables that he could have filled if he had known in advance that the customers were not going to turn up. After taking advice he got his receptionist to add just 2 words to her closing statement. As a result the rate of no-shows went down from 30% to 10%. Those two words were “Will you”. So, she changed her close from “Please call if you have to cancel” to “Will you please call if you have to cancel?” All the customers promised to call if they had to cancel. Now, some people still didn’t show up, but an improvement of two thirds in the no-show rate added up to a big profit bounce for Gordon.

Putting it into practice So, you can now see how you will apply this to your business. First you need to know who

Issue 4 - Creative Light

The proof of the pudding is in the eating

Phil Atherton

Phil Atherton Precept Optimum Performance Precept Optimum Performance is a trading name of Precept Mentoring Group Ltd, Precept House, 82 Leicester Road, Quorn, LE12 8BB


Posing hands Panel Member and Judge Kevin talks you through simple posing of hands and what you should look out for and avoid when photographing a bride and groom.

H kevin pengelley

ands are one of the most over looked aspects with posing not only with weddings, but portraits as well and posing hands the correct way can either make or break an image. So many times we see ugly hands within an image which takes the eye away from what would have been a superb image.


This is not just new photographers that are just starting out into the world of photography, but also well established photographers that are failing when it comes to posing hands. Posed hands for women should look graceful and elegant, posed hands for men should look strong and show masculinity. So, so often we see the backs of hands posed on a brides tummy and hands that are posed near the face making the hand look two sizes bigger then the subjects head. When photographing a wedding with just the bride, posing hands should not be a problem as the bride is holding a bouquet so the hands are hidden. The problem starts as soon as the bride has the bouquet taken away or we bring a groom into play. That’s when couples just don’t know what to do with their hands.

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e are now going to talk about how to pose hands that look graceful and elegant with just a bit of care and


To help pose hands with a bride get them to rest against maybe a wall or back of a chair where you can pose the hands in a horizontal position like in the image below. Things you need to watch if placing hands on hips is not to make the brides hands look like claws, they should look soft and elegant. What often feels natural does not necessarily look natural or flattering. The most common mistake that we see is the missing or amputated hand which is all to common when judging competition images. With grooms they either look like they are in a free kick at a football match with their hands clasped together above their crutch or hands behind their back where they look like they are up against a judge.  Guys pose and look a lot better if their hands are in their trouser pocket, after making sure phones, keys etc are removed.  Hands should be gently placed in the pocket but show half an inch of cuff and make sure you show some skin. Thumbs in or out I personally like to keep the thumbs in as if left out they look like they are going for the quick draw like John Wayne. When posing B&G’s together it is very easy to pose hands that look good and look comfortable. Use the brides bouquet to hide hands when B&G are together get the groom’s hands underneath the bouquet so it is hidden. To recap make sure the hands look elegant, place them so they are not showing the back of the hands which can make them look fat and ugly. Hands that are posed near the face can either emphasize or detract from the expression and mood of the bride or couple. Hands naturally are used to express feelings and emotion and can often give context to a pose or expression. Like feet, hands are not exactly the most attractive body parts and often then not are not proportioned along with the rest of the body. For example a builders hands etc. Care SHOULD always be taken in the posing of hands. Always take a few extra seconds to check hands are posed correctly, refer to the pictures in this article to get examples on how hands should be correctly posed. Kevin Pengelley

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Memories are special Look after them. Keep them safe. Save them from time, from forgetting. Make it truly matter.

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Phone 01482 588 037 Email @GFSphotographic


spotlight Congratulations Gillian Lloyd Gold Bar August 2014


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Issue 4 - Creative Light


Damian McGillicuddy, the multi award-winning Professional Photographer and Olympus UK’s Principal Photographer and Educator talks you through how this shot was done.

It’s fair to say I love my job and its excitement. I love the travel and I love meeting and shooting with new people. It sometimes seems and sounds glamorous, and I’m not going to fib, sometimes it can be – but none of these things are the X factor that keeps me enthralled and coming back for more. Recently I’ve been shooting for a group of clients in Finland. I love the clients, friends I’ve made there, the country, the people and their love of communicating good imagery – but the thing that really motivates me is the unknown. When we take on a shoot we try to find out as much about it as possible: location, subjects, outfits, aims, intention etc. No matter how hard we try though, it just isn’t as good as doing a ‘boots on the ground’ recce, so of course that’s the first thing we do on arrival and that is when the creative juices really start to flow. No matter how prepared the liaison is it’s never the same as seeing it through your own eyes, and nine times out of ten they don’t even highlight the things that excite me – different strokes for different folks, I guess!


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COOL CRIMINAL So why the preamble? Well I’m trying to set the scene and provide a little credibility! Our lovely editor asked me if I could put something together for our readers that wasn’t really dependent on a ‘big budget’ kit wise. With this in mind, I wanted to share a real world, client commissioned shoot with you, just to prove that the advice I give is used virtually every day in Team McGillicuddy’s working life: bags of expensive ‘shiny stuff’ will never replace the fundamental core skill of throwing the right sort of light around. When we recce’d the location for this shoot we found a cool staircase leading to the bathrooms and boiler room. It looked almost like a prison in some aspects, grey, blank, concrete, you know the type of thing. My make-up artist/stylist Zoe and I chatted about the look for the subject and decided that something classy and casually elegant would be a great contrast to the environment. Now for me the bit I really enjoy is working out how we are going to light the image and overcoming the challenges inherent on every location shoot. There was no power available to us in this location and frankly we were a little tight on space. More and more often I’m lighting the majority of my shoots with portable flash – speedlights if you will. I particularly like the Olympus FL-50R for its ease of use, I know it is a slightly older model but I’m a simple guy. For the shoot I used my Olympus OM-D E-M1 of course and the M.ZUIKO 45mm f/1.8. The 45mm f/1.8 gives the ability to stand the subject off the background. Nothing really unusual there for me. I utilised just three light sources: two speedlights and the little bit of ambient light available in the location. As I’ve mentioned the space was tight, so to avoid tripping over ourselves we decided not to use a traditional lighting stand and opted instead for my assistants – or as I like to call them, voice activated light stands. Unusually for me the lights were unmodified and ‘barefaced’, a bold and unusual move for a man who has designed his own light modifiers! As space was tight, putting up modifiers would have restricted the ability to position the lights. ‘Bareface’ speedlights tend to cast a rather high-contrast light with deep shadow and a harsh, almost abrupt, transfer between shadow and highlight, sometimes not the most flattering of looks and something that needed some thought and consideration.

Olympus OM-D E-M1 with M.Zuiko Digital 45mm 1:1.8

Now it’s my job to get the best out of a subject, brief and situation, and it’s thinking through these issues that really floats my boat. I wanted to shape and sculpt my subject with light but because of the space restrictions I couldn’t control the quality of the output with modifiers. The simple solution was to give the most effective and desired result… bounce the light! Let’s start by having a close look at the image, ‘Cool Criminal’, which is effective due to its simplicity. I stood Silja, my subject, against the cold backdrop of the minimalist rear wall and posed her in an almost ‘anti pose’ of nondescript apathy. The key light was a single barefaced flashgun that James, my assistant, held. He stood to camera left just out of frame and ‘boomed’ the flash out as best as he could. The big difference in controlling the quality of the light was that the unit was turned to face the camera and aimed upward at the intersection of the roof and a two-foot thick concrete beam. This allowed the light to spread and soften, still giving direction but greatly reducing the contrast to give a more flattering light on the mask of our subject’s face. The image was shot at 1/60sec at f/1.8, although the flash was metered at f/2.2. The reason is twofold; the wide aperture drags in the ambient light to act as fill and to control the density of the shadows, with the overexposure from the flash further reducing the contrast. I used the E-M1’s Colour Creator feature to both cool the image colour temperature down and to desaturate the image. Some people see these things as gimmicks but to me all the features on the E-M1 can be salient creative tools; used with thought and care they can add another dimension to an image. The moral of the story is very simple… it’s not super flashy kit that makes great photographs. Yes, good, capable kit is important but it is what you do with your kit that’s really important. Never forget there’s no point in having any of the gear if you’ve got no idea; the application of knowledge is the key. OK – at this point you may be mouthing ‘it’s alright for him’, but this is where you win too – Olympus is on a mission to take back cool from chefs and hairdressers. It rightfully belongs to photographers, and Olympus is doing something fabulous about it: organising subsidised and even free shoot events. Keep up to date with what’s happening on Olympus’s social media, at, and at


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Motocross Karl Redshaw is a full time free-lance photographer based in Warwickshire, he was awarded his Craftsman with the Guild in June of this year. Karl photographs various genre of photography but he shares with us his passion for Motocross. This year Karl took on a role as a track photographer at a motocross circuit and explains to us what makes a Motocross image appeal to the riders and ultimately what images sell.


have always liked bike sports so you can imagine my pleasure when I landed a role as track photographer at my local practice track “Moto45”. My role is to provide service/ sales to the riders who wish to document their track day. This also provides an additional service from the track hosts, which in turn attracts new riders. I share pictures with the track host for marketing purposes and brand awareness for both them and me.

karl redshaw

Getting to this position was not easy, as the market for motocross is sewn up pretty tight by part time or weekend photographers, who have brothers, sons, and daughters who race.


The amateur meetings that take place are governed by the AMCA, and their rules are no track access to any photographer other than those who have been passed and hold AMCA Accreditation. However private tracks are not under any AMCA limitations, so it’s a case of convincing the track owner you can provide better quality and service than your competitors. Now be very careful here, the track’s income is from racing, not your photography and they get pestered by new photographers almost weekly and so, quite rightly, get a little impatient at what must be seen by some as a stranger trying to make money of their business. So it’s important you sell yourself correctly and point out the obvious benefit to the track owners, publicity, branding, and above all giving the riders great pictures

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which they share via social media. People will travel to tracks based solely on a great picture they had seen of the track. Providing dynamic images will always draw new customers. Motocross is not for the faint of heart, it can be extremely dangerous to photograph, especially as I get in close to the bikes, this provides a unique prospective to the sport that many do not see. Being able to read body and bike language is vital to not only stay safe but produce dynamic photographs. I raced motocross for over a decade and my family was involved in the sport for over 30 years, this enables me to read everything from bike positioning, track conditions, and even know where a rider will be on track before he gets there. In order to be popular with the riders you need to capture dynamic pictures that make them look more talented than they are, after all no one wants to look average or even worse less talented than they actually are. High contrast and all action is what sells. This also promotes the track well, from a marketing standpoint you want people to see the photographs and imagine themselves in that position and looking that good. You also need to take care of your host’s. I recently had 10 large prints made up with both mine and the tacks branding on for their canteen, and other free desktop wallpapers from my own site with their branding in place. I am fortunate that Jenna Taylor of Moto45 is a wonderful host, she has an appreciation for quality, and has a no nonsense, plain talking approach to any undertakings so you always know where you are. I am also fortunate to have just received AMCA Photographic Accreditation so my options have just expanded to include events all over the UK. Karl Redshaw sportsphotographerwarwickshire/

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Š Karl Redshaw 54

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Issue 4 - Creative Light



Creative Light - Issue 4

Issue 4 - Creative Light


spotlight Congratulations Sam Hayward Gold Bar August 2014


Creative Light - Issue 4

Issue 4 - Creative Light


Countryside Walks Erv and Gilly spend their time travelling the UK writing, photographing and publishing books on dog walks and they are now on a mission to produce the best walks in the countryside for dogs and owners alike. Creative Light Magazine caught up with them in the Cotswolds writing and photographing their twelfth and thirteenth book! They share with us their story and their fascinating journey.

erv & gilly



orking in the office during the week, facing computer screens trawling digital mapping systems seemed all life had to offer. At weekends Erv and I liked to get out and about with our two dogs, Brillo and Belay. We often put on our boots and went for muddy walks in the countryside, but there was always a challenge which loomed ahead. Would we meet a stile? Brillo our arthritic dog began to get anxious and being a vocal dog, he would groan and wail. He couldn’t jump the stiles and hated to be lifted up. One afternoon he saw a hole which had been cut in the stock fence. He shot through, thinking that he would escape the prospect of being lifted up. To our horror he had become impaled in the fence. Someone had used wire cutters to get a smaller dog through in the past. The straying wire had gone through his leg on one side and back out on the

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Issue 4 - Creative Light



Creative Light - Issue 4

other. We then took on the challenge of finding walks without stiles, and decided that others may be having the same problem. The idea was born, and within a year we had created two books. After three years our two dogs have become five and the books have increased to eleven. We are currently on the road again, writing our twelfth and thirteenth book in The Cotswolds. Countryside Dog Walks - North East Wales This was our first book on our home turf. It was a sort of trial run to see how successful they would be. Erv, being a graphic designer and photographer, jumped at the chance to finally work for himself. I took on the task of writing up the walks, and when the books were produced, getting them out in the shops. We can’t believe how well they have taken off. With this in mind, and enjoying our trips to the Lake District we thought, well why not write another! Countryside Dog Walks – Lake District South As this wasn’t on our door step, we used up all our holidays and weekends visiting this beautiful area. After just one year we had two books written. Again this book was very well received, so we were faced with the dilemma of how we could continue writing books and working full-time. The office politics got a little too much and therefore the decision was easy, using all our savings we packed up our jobs and hit the ground running. Since that day almost two years ago, we have grown both with our books and our dogs. Tough Times It hasn’t been an altogether easy ride. We have been living on a shoe string, camping throughout the winter in a tent, with the dogs sleeping in their coats and extra blankets. There are days when after walking for a couple of hours, and Erv having bagged some great photographs, we have a sting at the end, as we are met with a stile and the whole walk is abandoned. This spring we purchased a used van, which runs off LPG and Erv has been kept busy with converting it to suit our needs while on the open road. In May this year we set off on our first trip in our camper van. Things are looking up; although having five dogs has meant that they have a larger portion of the van than we do! Erv being a graphic designer by trade has also printed out our logo.

Quick Questions: Q: Your favourite pieces of equipment? Canon 5D Mk ii and Canon 1Ds Mk ii (Full fame cameras) 16-35mm lens, 24-104mm and 100400mm Zoom


For lighting, what equipment if any, do you use Erv? I very rarely use flash as dogs don’t like it. I prefer natural light to capture the countryside and the colours. I sometimes have to use flash to light black dogs as black absorbs light and it is often difficult to get the detail in the fur.

Q: With Erv’s background in Graphic Design

what software do you choose to use on our photographs? I use photoshop for all my editing of my images.

Q: Apart from spending so much time in the

countryside photographing, mapping and writing your books what do you both do for relaxation? Gilly has Fell ponies and Erv is a mountaineer.


What is your favourite place in the world and

why? We both love anywhere in the countryside..... the natural world we live in is amazing.


How important is social media to your busi-

ness? It is extremely important. Social Media involves all the people we meet along the way and opens up to everyone what we do.


Three words that describe you? Positive : Friendly : Determined

Q: Favourite food? Hot and spicy

So look out for our van, we maybe in your area next!

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Š Countryside Walks


Creative Light - Issue 4

Issue 4 - Creative Light


My friend’s


ad de ste croix

Sainte Croix is the photography and business name of Adam De-Ste-Croix. A full time freelance photographer based in Hampshire. Having given up the corporate world of Graphic Design three years ago to concentrate on becoming a photographer, Adam made the decision to go full time in 2013. Adam photographs Portraits, Weddings and Fashion but his favourite area of photography is capturing landscapes and travel in the great outdoors. Adam shares with us a sad time in his life when he lost a very dear friend in a car accident, aged just 36. Asked by her family to capture the celebration of Sammie Dickson’s life, Adam shares with us his story.


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came to face my most challenging photographic task ever this year when I was asked to photograph the funeral of not just very close friend, but an adventurous friend who had profoundly influenced my life and was taken all too soon. I have written this as an account of the day and hardest (emotionally) photography work I have ever done. I hope it helps others to understand that funeral photography has a place and can be used as a guide to anyone requested to do the same. A photographer at a funeral may at first seem like a strange occurrence, but this had good cause. My friend Samantha Dickson, 36, was from South Africa and had been staying in the UK for many years. She was living her dream as an Overland Tour driver in South America - just one of the amazing adventures she lived for and also as a great photographer, sending back images to wow all her family and many friends. Her life was tragically taken in a road traffic accident after being in South America just short of a year. It was her wish for her ashes to be spread in the sea near Portsmouth, the place she called home, and so the funeral took place here too. Samantha’s family live in South Africa and aside from the closest members, not everyone could make it to her funeral. She also had many friends all over the world from her adventures and I was asked to photograph the funeral for all these family and friends that couldn’t be there on the day.

Samantha Dickson 1978 - 2014

It took me a few days to consider this assignment because I was deeply upset by the loss of my friend and also worried that I wouldn’t be able to pull myself together as a professional  photographer whilst paying my last respects. As soon as I thought about Samantha, how much she had given to the world and all the things she did for the people around her I realised I had been presented with an opportunity to give something back to her family. So I kicked my own ass, as Sam would have otherwise kicked it, and gratefully accepted the invitation. I have worked many weddings as a photographer where I get in touch with wedding planners, Vicars/Priests etc. before the wedding to understand any requirements. On this occasion I would need to maximise what I had previously learnt to maintain the respect of the congregated mourners. I approached the crematorium, funeral director and officiant for meetings before the funeral and they were all very helpful. They gave me reassurance that photography at a funeral was perfectly acceptable and always welcomed by all those that couldn’t be present as well as those in attendance. I visited the crematorium the day before to check out the suitable positions for photography and get a measure for the light. I wanted to refrain from using flash where possible but I carried out a quick demonstration for the Officiant to see how I use my flash and he was very happy for me to use it where needed on the day.

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o the day came, I’d already shed tears in the weeks before, and then again in the crematorium when exploring the venue but now it was the actual day. The Officiant was very friendly and had suggested the type of photographs that would be required. For this occasion the main points to consider were the hearse arriving, the pale bearers, the family entering, the readers and the memory tree.  When proceedings began, it was very emotional and tough because it all came to light that it was my friend in there.  The service was beautiful and despite having to wipe tears from the back of my camera several times the photography went very well. I think auto-pilot kicks in at times like this. The ceremony was certainly a celebration of life with some very touching and humorous stories concerning Samantha’s ever joyful character.  As another item of preparation I had also asked for advice from the Guild of photographers, of which I am a member. There were lots of useful comments in the forum as can be expected from the Guild and something that stood out was that rather than capture emotions from individuals like you might at a wedding, was to take in the feelings of the event as a whole. Samantha’s family and friends didn’t need to see the sadness on that day, they wanted a celebration of life. I kept these thoughts in mind and maintained a mostly wider view of the proceedings to be able to present the ceremony and its feelings to others. I used a Canon EOS 5D3 and didn’t once use a 70-200mm telephoto zoom as I would for a wedding. Instead I stuck mostly with a Canon EF 24-105mm F4L and even used the wide Canon EF 17-40mm F4 L. I switched the camera to the silent shutter mode so as to remain unobtrusive and used a diffuser cover over my Godox Ving 560C speed-light which was reflected off a wall and only used for a little fill balancing. It would be obvious to think that dark, moody black and white images would be the expectation from a funeral. But this was not Samantha, she was bright and vibrant. The photographs were processed in colour as well as a set in monochrome for which I created a tone that gave them that bright vibrancy back. The family appreciated a mixture of photographs from the whole set that represent the feelings on the day perfectly. For this article, I chose only a small sample of the less personal images from the day to show the ceremony. I also created photographs of happy friends enjoying sharing stories of their good times with Samantha at the wake, but I felt they should remain private to family and friends. The family have given their consent for this article. At first I thought funeral photography seemed like an unusual request but I have received messages from family and friends overseas to say they were all very grateful for the photographs and it helped them to say goodbye and let go. I also


got messages and emails from people that didn’t even know Samantha to say they wish they had photographs of the celebration of life they had arranged for their loved ones. It is clear that the photography of a funeral is something that families and friends do want, something with which to remember saying goodbye to their loved one. As for me, it was the best possible way to say “au revoir, enjoy your next adventure and see you again sometime to an amazing adventurer, photographer and friend”. The same as for all of her family and friends, Samantha will be forever in my heart and her smile always remembered. I hope you never have to go through the same but if you do have the opportunity then I hope this article gives you the emotional strength you need to accept it as you can provide a great gift that completes the circle of life for those that will truly cherish it. Although I do not seek it, if I am presented with this opportunity again to provide my talent as a photographer along with my emotional respect as a caring person then I will happily accept.

Adam de-Ste-Croix

Creative Light - Issue 4

PRESENT Present your client with a unique USB or print box product. Personalise with your details for a truly professional finish. Your images, your brand.




SHARE We’ve never shared more! Use a digital credit to create an online gallery and slideshow so your client can easily view and share their images on social media. Each share is a social success for your business.

SELL Let your digital images keep on selling! Let your clients and their family and friends easily purchase print products from the online gallery1. It’s selling made simple. LoCall UK: 0845 0800 750 Ireland: +353 1Light 4570 244 Issue 4 - Creative 1. Print Products will be available for sale from the online gallery from Jan 2015.

69 You can select which products you wish to offer and set your own prices.

spotlight Congratulations Ani Evans Qualified Wedding Professional September 2014


Creative Light - Issue 4

Issue 4 - Creative Light



Creative Light - Issue 4

Issue 4 - Creative Light



Creative Light - Issue 4

spotlight Congratulations Arron Gent Qualified Professional September 2014

Issue 4 - Creative Light


Competition Winners

johnsons photopia

Kindly sponsored by Johnson’s Photopia. FIVE Frio V2 Coldshoe’s have been won! Congratulations to the winners! The frio™ connects your hotshoe flash quickly to your tripod, lightstand, rig and grip gear. Once safely on, your gear is secure thanks to patent-pending DualLock™ security, but can be removed in an instant. Each of the five winners will be receiving the Frio courtesy of Johnsons Photopia.


Sally Masson Judges favourite

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Laura Gioffredo ‘Pretty in Purple”

Matt Gregg “Forgotten Worker”

Zara Cowdray

Phil Rogers

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naughty boys Š 2014 Mark Lynham 78

Creative Light - Issue 4

Issue 4 - Creative Light


“Syd” © Penny Hardie


Creative Light - Issue 4

Creative Light - Issue 4