I never fell out of love with my first love, I think I may have neglected it for a while though.
Summer 2015 saw me diving head-first back into my original creative passion of photography and I have never been so energised or animated.
I moved to Edinburgh from Fife just before my 18th birthday and was never seen without my 35mm Pentax camera. Working with theatre companies in Edinburgh gave me my first break into the performing arts & media world.
I was publicity assistant at Theatre Workshop in Stockbridge whilst playing drums in the band Tonight at Noon. Drumming and Photography shaped the next decade of my life.
Shooting production stills, poster campaigns, actor’s head shots and documenting the creative process became everyday happenings for me. The weekends were taken up with touring most of Scotland back when Tennents Lager sponsored the touring circuit. Their support made it possible to be on the road every weekend up in the highlands playing gigs in Portree, Nairn, Tain & Inverness. Throughout this period, my camera was never a few feet away from me.
Creativity has always been the mainstay of my drive and ambition. Having avoided university or college, I grew to learn quite quickly that great contacts and a willingness to get stuck in were essential when freelancing.
One opportunity more than often leads directly to another as long as you keep your eyes and ears open to suggestion and chance.
After having spent 20 years or so working in the digital space, sitting at an Apple Macintosh, designing, editing, building and often falling into periods of procrastination, I recently had a bit of a wake-up call. Although very happy in my work with clients and digital innovators in Edinburgh, I realised I was really missing my passion. Photography.
My need to be on my feet, interacting with other creatives. Devising plans, scouting locations, selecting the right gear to use to light the scene and then… the shoot.
Before a shoot, I am always filled with a sprinkle of fear and bucketloads of nervous energy. This seems to be just the right combination to set the adrenaline levels for the shoot and spark creativity in me.
After a shoot there is always a mixture of a little fatigue, immense satisfaction and a contentment that I have never experienced sitting at a desk completing a digital project.
This past few months has seen me shooting many portraits of friends, family and local business leaders. Using every spare day out of the office with my camera bag, set of Bowens flash & a backdrop kit.
Please see the Competition post here to see how you can get involved with us here in Edinburgh.
Our plans to relocate to France and set up Studio Faire have brought a fresh focus to my plans and ambitions.
Whilst freelancing as a web designer, graphic designer and general digital-jack-of-all-trades, I discovered that I really do not relish desk-life.
The simpler, less mentally-noisy pastime of photographing interesting people is a dream vocation for me.
Even when recently photographing 9 models with make up artists, hairdressers, stylists and assistants on a fashion shoot in Edinburgh for Stewart Christie & Co., I found myself spending a very long day with a constant smile on my face, not a hint of anxiety and absolutely no doubt at all.
Once in France, our plan is to open a fantastic studio space where we can offer space for creativity, collaboration and education.
Our dream is to have a large open studio space where well scoped projects can be executed as well as ad-hoc creative happenings and events occur.
See Julia’s inspiration wall here at Pinterest : www.pinterest.com/juliadouglas/studio-faire-inspiration/
The journey continues…
As we continue to scout for the perfect property and location for Studio Faire, I am acquiring new skills in portrait & style photography. Constantly studying the greats such as Jean-Baptiste Mondino and David Bailey, experimenting with studio lighting and salivating over camera kit lists from Nikon & Sigma.
More soon, thanks for following.