I was just marvelling at my new Nikon D810 which I purchased a couple of weeks ago and it made me reflect on just how much photography has changed since I started my business 23 years ago. Back in those old days, wedding photography styles were very different as many cameras were still medium format which used roll film. I was very lucky to meet photographer Warwick Dickinson and his wife Valerie in 1993. They allowed me to accompany them for a full wedding season at which time I never picked up a camera once! I learned how a wedding works and where I should be at what time in order to help make the day run smoothly. I was very aware of all the other professionals on the day and the fact that the Hotel had to seat the guests at a certain time, to avoid a spoiled meal, so I had to make sure all the images required were taken within the allocated time. In 1994, I shot my first wedding with my new Hasselblad camera which was square format and you got 12 shots to a roll!!! This meant that every time you pressed the shutter it cost about £3.50 (price of the film, lab developing and proofs to be printed to show to your clients.) A whole wedding would probably produce 60 shots! Can you image that these days? The cameras created beautiful images but were so heavy and cumbersome that they were tripod mounted which always frustrated me as I didn’t have any freedom to capture moments and everything had to be set up for the shot. However, this ‘classical’ training certainly didn’t do me any harm as it taught me to make sure the image was right before I ‘pressed the button.’ A discipline which still stays with me today. I used to leave my film for the laboratory to collect and by Thursday, there were my proofs- delivered. It always amazed me how by using a light meter and fill in flash, how accurate the exposures were. After a few years, I also acquired a Canon SLR film camera which gave me much more freedom to take ‘moments’ as well as just posed photographs.
Moving on to 2006, when my daughter Lily was one year old, the photography industry was starting to change dramatically and I made the switch and bought my first digital camera. What a daunting task lay ahead of me. I was tired from looking after a young child and I didn’t know what a pixel was!!! I had no option but to dive in at the deep end and learn -Quickly!
I went on a couple of photoshop courses and learned the basics and began editing my own images. I soon found that as my confidence grew, that I really enjoyed this although I was spending hours sat at the computer- and still am!
How things have moved on again since those first digital years. The camera I have now is incredible. It amazes me how you can zoom in on an image and see someones contact lenses! Editing has become so much easier with the advent of lightroom and I still love my job as much as I did (if not more) than when I started. I still have my Hasselblad as it is of great sentimental value to me and it taught me a great deal.