I don't know about you but I am endlessly fascinated by the process of photography. Every single one of us would photograph a scene slightly differently and I saw that last week at our Shoot Day in Sheffield. Three lead photographers and a bunch of attendees all shooting the same subjects in the same space but oh boy are the images different. It's so interesting to see the results filtering through on social media. Soooooo I had a bit of a revelation when I was there and thought Farm is all about education right? So instead of just choosing and posting these winning images each week, I'm going to contact the photographers to find out more about their process to produce the shots. I think it will be very valuable information.. so let's start with this absolute belter from the lovely Jo Donaldson who shoots alongside her fella, the equally lovely Liam. I asked Jo to tell me about her settings, her preset and the story behind the image. So first up here is the shot.. I chose it because I think it's jam packed full of narrative.. it feels like you are on that muddy path with them. I feel that slightly precarious step with them, the sense that it's the beginning of a journey and a damn romantic one at that. We've all seen gorgeous elopement images by now and plenty of them are shot in these incredible Scottish landscapes but what makes this photo next level is that the photographer invites the viewer along for the ride. It's an adventure that we can all take part in. Jump to below the image for Jo's words ...
"Claudia + Max eloped from Hong Kong to the Fairy Glen in Skye
, which is fairly easily accessible by car and once you are there feels very otherworldy due to the cone shaped hills, rocky outcrops and rolling landscape. We (me and Liam!) had scouted out the day before with Gregg and Tom of Cinemate Films
so that we could figure out our plan of attack for the next day which was great fun!
After the ceremony lower in the glen Tom and I 'spotted' the newlyweds up to the top of Castle Ewan - a huge rocky tower which dominates the landscape. It's quite a scramble to get up to the top and involves some potentially difficult climbing, especially in platform trainers (bride!) and dress shoes (groom!). Epic shots are great, but safety of the couple comes first.
Tom was in front, and as I pulled myself up out of the narrow crevasse I saw this shot happening, the light was just gorgeous in front of them. To be honest, I was on settings from a previous location and while I'd love to tell you there was loads of thought on executing this, I more or less aimed to not blow out her dress and keep focus on their hands, without losing the background. One handed shooting while climbing haha! My other half Liam and Gregg (Cinemate) climbed a neighbouring hill in order to get a wider view of the couple on the rocky tower (during which time I hid back down in the crevasse haha!)
It's important to us that we feel a connection with our couples so we had been fairly involved in helping Claudia + Max plan their adventure. Privacy was important to them so in the end we opted for a 6.30pm ceremony, meaning the Glen would be pretty empty of the usual volume of tourists (intense in Skye!), and the light would be potentially sweet. It's Scotland though, our weather is unpredictable at best but that was a gamble the couple were willing to take! It actually rained all day and the wind howled, but thankfully it cleared up from around 4pm - woohoo!
Tom was actually in this shot, guiding the couple forward. When I looked through the images from the day I knew that this was the photograph I wanted to share, that said most about our adventurous couple and the movement we like to try and shoot. Tricky to photoshop as I am definitely not a pro at photoshopping, but totally worth it 😉
So there you go - a lot of info but the summary is this, sometimes you just have to grab the shot rather than overthink the technical side, and don't be afraid to put extra work into a final image for your couples - even if you're really not that good at it haha!"