From Wiola at Aspire Equestrian:
There are so many photography businesses out there nowadays offering their services but many go in the direction of rather strong contrasts, supernatural visions, soulless at times in their creations. Such techniques can of course be interesting and there are many creative examples out there but I invited Ceri to blog on here about her adventures with her new business because her photos simply and beautifully capture the real emotions, real colours, real connection we have with horses.
I hope you will enjoy Ceri’s work and her story too as she builds her start-up business Pure Essence Photography. Please feel free to leave your comments and let us know if you enjoy posts like this. Over to Ceri 🙂
Pure Essence Photography
I’ve always loved horses. I come from a non horsey family, but from a very early age I was fascinated by these beautiful, elegant creatures. I would regularly visit the horses in a field locally and feed them carrots over the fence. When I was about 8 or 9 years old my two younger sisters started having dance lessons, when I wanted to know why I couldn’t go my Dad very kindly told me I danced like a baby elephant!! That delightful (if accurate) description was quickly forgotten with the next sentence out of his mouth “you can do something else instead, what would you like to do?” A lifelong obsession with horses began……
If anyone is interested I can waffle on about my various experiences another time, but to cut a long story short I rode horses no one else wanted to, worked at riding schools in return for the occasional ride and basically did whatever I could to be around horses. After school I decided to work with horses and a fun and varied career followed (again I won’t go into that now).
Skip forward several years and I found myself frustrated with my inability to capture the beautiful things that I see on a daily basis on camera. I joined a local photography club, met some wonderful people, borrowed a basic bridge camera…… and a new obsession was born!!
I started off, as with riding, by learning the basics (who knew photography was so technical) and by experimenting with the different areas to see what I enjoyed. In the beginning I really enjoyed landscape, probably because I’m such a lover of what Mother Nature has to offer. After a while I found that while I could learn the techniques involved I didn’t have the xfactor, the thing that makes your image of a peak district sunset stand out from the thousands of others that look exactly the same. Very few people can really do that and it’s not something you can learn. So, I started looking at other options – macro (close up), still life, nature and eventually portrait. I left portrait until last because I didn’t really like the idea of posed studio pictures, don’t get me wrong I think there are some amazing photographers out there making amazing images, but I’ve always liked to photograph more natural, organic subjects. So, what about street photography, you know the one where you hide in doorways with a long lens taking pictures of people who don’t know you’re there? Again, not for me, I just felt it was wrong, voyeuristic and invading people’s privacy. So, then I had a look at lifestyle photography…. Bingo! I loved it! I played around with it a bit and found a style I loved. For me, it’s not necessarily about shooting the person, it’s about shooting emotions, interactions, relationships. Whether it’s horse and owner, mother and son, boyfriend and girlfriend it’s about catching that relationship, that fleeting moment, that special look.
Having discovered this new love I started to experiment on family and friends, the better I got at it, the more I enjoyed it. The way cameras are these days you might think it’s a case of pointing and shooting, but there’s so much more to it if you really want to create something special.
After a while (and lots of reading and harassing friends) I started to wonder if I could combine my two loves into a way to make a living. My aim was to bring quality photography to everyone, to make it accessible and affordable. After a lot of thought, research and soul searching I decided to take the leap and follow my dreams… Pure Essence Photography was born.
Thanks for reading my waffle, if you’d like to know more about the services Pure Essence offers my website www.pureessencephotography.co.uk is currently under construction and should be up and running soon.