Portrait- Donna Kerslake - Ben Bowles

Sometimes, when putting together a blog it can be difficult to decide on content. Other times it can just flow due to the nature of the shoot. This blog falls within the latter.

Donna Kerslake is a budding author that has a book being released imminently. For the promotional push, she needed a small portfolio to share so got in touch to discuss. We decided that rather than studio style shots, we should go for an outside shoot which ensures a more natural and authentic look to the images. Luckily, Donna lives 30 seconds away from a quaint and picturesque park so it was a no brainer to take advantage of it.

A great backdrop for an outdoor shoot

Donna won't mind me saying that she was nervous about the shoot- I don't care what anybody says, being on my side of the camera is a lot easier! However, Donna's natural look really lended itself well to the tone we were going for and cheesy fake smiles were banned! The method of the shoot was to chat and walk around the park whilst taking a few shots from different angles and perspectives. There was a number of set pieces in the park, so we used these to ensure the shots had some variety rather than ordinary headshot after headshot.

No cheesy smiles on this shoot!

Location shoots are really interesting but you are at the mercy of the elements. Rain, harsh sun and wind all can be difficult for the photographer to grapple with but for a February afternoon we couldn't have got asked for more. It was overcast meaning that the light was very even and there was enough sun peaking through. The images had a pop to them straight from the camera.

The photography gods were smiling on us with even and soft light

It is easy to go overboard on editing after any shoot which can mean  the photos take on a fake and false kind of look. With nice soft light like this, editing is a case of subtly improving the shots rather than making big changes. I'm a big believer in getting the shots right 'in camera'. On location, a photographer who is worth their salt should be able to work out the settings, light and conditions in order to get what they need. If you hear a photographer constantly say, " it's okay, I can fix that in an edit", you have every right to be hesitant about their photography skills

Small edits rather than photoshop magic was the order of the day

I digress!....As I said earlier I really enjoy these kind of shoots. Donna was great company and the finished photos were just what I had in my minds eye before the shoot began. Satisfied is putting it mildly!

Until next time, see you on the flip side

Benjamin x 

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