The path to finding yourself as an artist
When I first started photography, I got myself a little portable studio, with a black backdrop and a pair of Gemini Bowen lights and went house to house setting up my ‘studio’. I tried everything. Couples, families, babies, dogs. Some of it was ‘ok’. Some of it was downright awful!
At the same time, I discovered a love for outdoor photography. Especially for families and pets. I found that the natural light made me think more, work with shadows, hard light, shade to play with the light in a way that pushed me and made my work start to stand out.
At the same time, the white background, high key family photography was still popular. So I thought I would try that. I bought a huge pop up backdrop and more lights. So now I was working backlit.
Some of these pics were ok. Some were beautiful.
But none of that really made my creative soul sing.
I then made a tough decision around this time 2 years ago. I was quitting ‘studio’ and sticking to where I excelled. Outside, backlit, fields, trees, free and natural. I sold all the gear except a rack, just in case it came in handy. If I couldnt be ooba~original, I wasn’t doing it.
Two years passed. And I’m remembering the downside to being solely outdoors. Winter!
No one wants shoots in blustery, rainy weather!
Once again, I’m thinking about a studio. And what do you know? This time I did it my way!
I’m a natural light gal. I have learned this. Our new house has the most amazing light in the dining room!
I like it light and bright, so voiles made for the perfect backlighting!
I never liked the whole studio look that placed people in thin air. So I made my studio into a bedroom. Perfect for boudoir and mummies and babies and for little ones to bounce on!
That was my starting point.
One evening, Kev was painting my new ‘studio’ white and he had the voiles balanced on the overhead light, creating a frame in the room.
He said to me ‘you could shoot through that. Would look lovely.
Clever bugger. I dug the backcloth rack out of the loft, bought another pair of voiles off Amazon, and rang a photographer friend who has the most gorgeous baby girl.
“I have some studio stuff I want to try, please bring Rose and pyjamas for you both”.
You have to love these friends.
We tried the ‘shooting through’ and both loved it. To the point I know she’s kicking herself for not thinking of it first! Haha!
Laura the photographer at The Rose Photography Co said
“I loved the setup and as a photographer I was really excited to see how they turned out as it is such an original idea and I love the privacy/intimacy of it and the softness of the images”
Frankie, who had a Mummy & Me shoot said
“We loved our Mummy and Me Shoot with Sheryl. She is a natural with kids and it comes across in the way she is able to get them to interact with the camera. I love how they look so natural and our laughter and love really is captured in these photos.
The ‘set’ is fab and I found it so much nicer then going for a family shoot where you are just in front of a stark background, really lovely idea to use a bedroom style. The only problem you have is choosing which ones to print, or how to build a new wall to put them all up “
So what’s my point?
Never say never. Its NOT EASY TO BE ORIGINAL! It’s taken me years to get to this point.
If you aren’t coming up with your own style and concept, you will never be happy creatively and you become stale and boring. If you don’t have passion for what you do, why should your clients?!
I said I was through with studio photography. What I didn’t know, was that I just needed to find MY way of shooting it. Then it’s love. Then your creative soul sings.
This is why every photographer needs to quit studio photography until they find their own path and why an original is always worth far more than a copy.
To contact Sheryl about a shoot in The Essence Studio click here
Sheryl and Oobaloos Photography are ambassadors for Embrace Nation Preset
s, all images shown here are edited with these.