I believe, and would therefore often say to others, that everyone sees things differently and sees different things too, when they look at my work or anyone else’s pictures.
And so it’s what you see or what other people see, rather than what I see, that I have spend most of my life trying to figure-out – as photography is what I do in an attempt to make a living – as I try to create the type of images that they and possibly others too, would want to use, using light to tell the story.
So for me, as a photographer, lighting is often the first thing that I will see or will look at.
(Because obviously one needs light to take a picture – because without it, the camera or recording device that you are using, would not record anything – so all that you would get in the end is a black picture or image)
So light is obviously very important – and being able to control that, has therefore been one of the many things I have spent my time over the pass 30 years trying to master.
However, I know that light is just one of the many things that could make a big difference, so it’s by no means the only thing – and so that leads me to what I’m about to show and talk about here today.
When I am shooting a home, which I’m hoping that an Editor from a National magazine will want to feature, the goal would normally be to produce about 15 images as I know they will at least want to use 10 images – and so, I would usually put a full day aside to take those pictures.
“A full day to take 15 pictures”, I hear you say – “flip me, I could shoot the entire house in less than 30 minutes, as shooting a few rooms isn’t very hard to do.”
And you would be right – because taking some pictures is easy and I too could easily shoot an entire house in less 30 minutes.
However, producing or creating the type of images that someone like an Editor from a National magazine will actually want to use – and would therefore be willing to pay me some money for the use of them – is very different to just taking some picture that others could use if they wanted to, as almost any type of image would good enough in that case, if that was really all that I had to do.
Which basically means that I know that I may have to do a lot more than just take some pictures of whatever happens to be there – because what the camera often records, doesn’t always look as good as what my eyes see or what my brain records when I look around a room.
To help illustrate what I mean – which should also help explain why it would take me so long to shoot a home, as well as why I’d possibly charge a lot more for the use of my work than many others would – I’m simply going to let you see the set of captures that lead up to this one image…
.. of this sitting room in Jillian’s former Fisherman’s Cottage, which we shot last week in the County Down village of Groomsport.
To my eye, I can assure you it looked great – however, as you can see from this first picture that was taken…
.. it appeared very dark on screen – which was mainly due to the weather outside, as it was raining at the time.
Plus the windows – which were very much in keeping with this type house – were relative small and deeply set in the 2 feet thick walls, so not a lot of natural light would poured in, even at the best of times I reckon.
Anyway, that was my starting point – and so as I knew that this would probably be the lead shot or the one that an Editor would want to go big with at the start of the feature – then it was pretty obvious that I and my team were going to need to do a lot here, should we want to achieve our goal. Which was of course, not just to see if I could take a picture, but was to see if I could produce an image (or set of images in this case) that an Editor from a National magazine would want to use… and naturally want to use badly enough, that she would be willing to pay me something for the use of them too :)
Because at the end of the day, as far as I’m concerned, photography is all about trying to make some money – as this is what I do for a living – rather than for a hobby or for the fun of it.
So if you don’t see me smiling or looking like I’m having a load of fun, that’s because I’m totally focused on my goal – which I know I need to be, if I’m to succeed – because no one has ever paid me for excuses, only for results :)
So this is why I’d ask Marie to help me – and often someone else too, like Claudio here in this case, to help both of us – because people only pay me for what they want to use, not for me to do the actual work for them.
Which means I know I need to produce some images that they will actually want to use, if I’m expecting them to pay me anything afterwards, for the use of our work.
The chicken or the egg, which comes first… type of thing.
Anyway, they say a picture is worth a thousand words – so since I’m obviously rambling on here about all sorts of different things and I know, as I said at the start, “that everyone sees things differently and sees different things too”, when they look at my work – and many of you who are reading this, will be looking at it for very different reasons too, then I’m now just going to let the pictures speak for themselves, to let you see what all we did here.
And for those of you who would often ask me questions about what all I do, because you would like to do this type of work too – I would suggest as you look at each capture frame below, you ask your self what would you have done next, if that was the image that appeared on your screen, after you had taken the picture – because it’s what you would have done next (rather than what we did here) that would result in your image looking different – be it a lot different or just a little bit different in the end… because everyone sees things differently and sees different things too :)
Anyway, I have said enough, so I’ll let you enjoy putting the words to the pictures – as I’m quite sure what you will see here is not what I see…
.. which just leaves me to say a big thanks to Jillian here…
.. for not only inviting us in but also for putting up with us, as we turned her beautiful house upside down :)
All of which should also let you see why, it takes us a full day to shoot a home – and why the amount that I would charge for the use of our work, would therefore naturally be reflexed in all of this too.