I'm one of those imaginative creative types who likes to scrapbook, learn, draw and create beautiful, elegant images. Picking up a camera felt so natural to me, before my camera I used to spend hours drawing but now I can create images quickly and get just as much satisfaction in doing so.
I am formally trained and hold a Triple Distinction in Photography from College and a Certificate of Higher Education in Commercial Photography from The Arts University at Bournemouth.
Photographing people is my passion. I've previously worked for a multinational child/baby portraits company where I was held in the top three photographers in the company, I learned SO much from working with those guys, the training was fantastic and I learned how to sell my work and how to communicate with members of the public too. From there, at age 22, I went on to start up my own photography business, GemmieV Photography, where I concentrated on photographing babies and families throughout Devon on a part time basis.
In March 2013 I was approached by a local businessman with a studio space, he was looking for someone to take on the studio full time. I took the studio on and built it up, learning along the way about all the key aspects of running a studio, organizing shoots, networking, etc then in December the Owner decided to sell up so I moved out of the studio and started again, thankfully I had built up quite a client base.
Rather than starting up a new local studio and competing in an already saturated market, I decided that I would become mobile and offer Photography Workshops throughout the Southwest of England to teach new photographers everything I had learned from College, University, Employment as a Baby/Child Photographer and through my experiences as a Self Employed Photographer and Studio Manager.
I love inspiring people through photography, helping people understand how to use their cameras and lighting to create images they are proud of makes me happy. Although I do take on the odd family/baby portrait here and there my true passion is teaching. I believe that to be the best photographer and tutor I could possibly be I need to keep an open mind and regularly learn new techniques, I'm often found with my head in a book or watching online tutorials, I have a stash of photography magazines that I trawl through for tips and have many full journals with notes and drawings from helpful articles I've picked up along the way.
This job has led me to work with other creatives too, both as a commercial photographer shooting others artwork and also as a tutor to explain lighting, composition etc. for artists creating lighting setups for drawing and painting. In relation to this I hold a monthly Life Drawing class where I set the lighting up appropriately for our session.
My workshop stylist introduced me to a fantastic, award winning makeup artist Sally Orchard who teaches in Falmouth, I taught her how to light her makeup effectively and she taught me how to apply makeup properly, this was great for me as it means I can use what I learned on my workshops when creating new looks with Models and it also means if anyone wants to shoot boudoir or a beauty session with me I can offer to do their makeup too! It also means I get to scrapbook makeup styles and practice yet another creative sideline!
As a member of the guild of photographers I regularly enter competitions and take part in discussions, find links from training exercises etc, it's great! The guild is a fantastic support network and I can learn loads with them too. They keep my standard of work high! Here's my profile with them: http://photoguild.co.uk/member/gemmavarney