I’m a professional photographer who specialises in shooting people. I’ve written books on photography, I teach other photographers and regularly contribute to photography magazines.
I set up Viva Wedding Photography a couple of years ago, having been shooting weddings since 2005, to be a separate business from my other corporate and portrait photography. I really enjoy pushing where wedding photography is going and experimenting with new techniques and generally just trying to get the most creative and interesting photography for my clients.
I’m all about trying to get the best images for my clients, and if that means using artificial light in the form of flashes, I’ll make the most of them. The best backgrounds for images are not always in the best light. So if I can control the light, I can make better photos. I try and use flashes, studio lights, reflectors etc. to make my life easier. Shooting the speeches for example can be very difficult as they are often near the end of the day and it’s darker. However by using flashes, I can make sure that I can stand anywhere and always get the best images as I light what I want to shoot and then don’t worry about it, as it’s always correctly exposed.
It seems that I bring a lot with me, like studio lights, a few flashes for Off-Camera flash work, a backdrop stand, paper roll, props etc. But most of that is for the photo booths that I do at weddings. However I’ve shot many a wedding with just one body, a couple of lenses and a couple of flashes and one stand. It can be as complicated or as easy as you want. I like to keep things simple to make my life easier.
I think that it has to be the photo of the couple in a field at night with the coloured umbrellas. You could call this shot an Off-Camera flash shot, you could call it a light painting shot. I just call it one of mine. It was taken at the end of a very, very, long wedding day and I’d also shot another wedding the day before so was ready to drop, but I went for it and the couple stuck with me. I just used a tripod and one flash and a long exposure. All I did was run round the couple, once I’d triggered the shutter and fired the flash manually in each umbrella and one flash for the bride and one for the groom. It took a couple of takes but I’m glad I stuck with it, as it’s one of my favourite photos of last year.
A bit of both really. As I said I’m all about making things easier for me, but also getting the best images for my clients, and although it’s a bit of work setting up the photo booths and doing them, we end up with some great images that people really enjoy having them taken and it also means that I don’t have to shoot the evening reception which I don’t really enjoy doing as we have shot most people by then before the meal. I get bored doing the same thing over and over again, so I like mixing the photo booths up and coming up with ideas based on my clients personalities.
Oh, I think I just answered that. It’s a combination of both of us. I’ve got a load of ideas that I want to do for photo booth, but I work with my clients to find things that mean something to them. Like the skiing themed one for the couple who met while skiing. Or the American Trucker one for the couple who were doing an American road trip for their honeymoon. The more outrageous the better as far as I’m concerned!
I try to limit the amount of weddings that I do as I want to put the maximum effort into each wedding and not feel like it’s a conveyor belt. I’m looking to really focus on the kind of client that really wants creative and quirky wedding photography. Something that stands out a bit from the crowd. I’m also looking to bring other aspects of photography into wedding photography and see what happens with that. I go to a lot of photography talks by different type of photographers and am constantly inspired by them, so I’m looking to push my wedding photography even further.
I’m really focused on portrait photographers at the moment and what they are doing in an editorial kind of way. People like Phil Fisk and a lot of the photographers who work for the Guardian. As for wedding photographers, I like the work of Lisa Devlin of course. I love the effort and thought that she puts into her shots and she’s constantly surprising me with new images. I also really like what she’s doing for the industry. There is Jeff Newsom as well over in the states, and Matt at Our Labour of Love. I like these guys as they are pushing things as well. But to be honest I’m constantly inspired by the amount of amazing photographers that we have over here, it would be too many to list, but I’ve been very fortunate to have met loads of them though the Photography Farm. Wedding photography is very exciting at the moment and it seems like there is no limit to where it can go.
Go on my workshop. Seriously though don’t buy any new kit, spend the money on my workshop and it’ll improve your photography so much more. If you really want to push me for a tip, I’d have to say ditch that diffuser and learn to use the flash properly.
Constantly, but that’s the fun of it. I’m such a perfectionist and am always beating myself up about my images, and would be out in a field dodging sheep’s poo and ditches all night if I could just to get the right shot but I’m always conscious of taking the couple away from their wedding.
Anything that I can find. I’ve used kids light sabres, engine inspection lamps you name it I’ll try and use it. Light sources with LEDs in them tend to work best though as they are very bright and adaptable.
Erm…..well my main aim with my workshops is to get photographers understanding the subject and being able to use their new skills with their work. My workshops are not about coming away with great images that you can put on your site, but you have no idea of how you managed to get that image. I don’t want to show people how to take the photo, I want them to learn what they need to do to take it. I’ve seen so many workshops where people are shown how to replicate that photographer’s style and images and I just think that is a waste of time for everyone. I’d rather show people what they need to know to adapt it to and develop their own style of photography. So I think that you can expect to come away with a solid foundation of skills and also I’ll try and make the workshops as much fun as possible for you.
Can’t wait! Adam’s classes at farm Week are on the 23rd, 25th and 26th of January and full details can be found here.