Skip to main content

My Inspiring Week With Christina by Ellie Booton

Hi, my name is Ellie, from John Cleveland College, and I have spent a week with Christina for my work experience as I am keen to continue with photography in the future and to develop my skills further. 

Initially, Christina introduced lighting, including the use of natural light and reflectors, to Cerys and I  and how to effectively use it to produce a successful portrait. Cerys and I spent time perfecting our portraits of each other by experimenting with different positioning, for example facing towards and away from the light. In addition, Christina educated me on the different settings and how to use my camera, including adjusting the aperture to decrease or increase the depth of field and also the ISO and when it is best to use a high or low ISO, which was extremely useful as I can now produce much better quality photographs- it has opened me up to a new world of photography I didn't know existed. I felt this helped me hugely to improve my current skills and I will also be able to take this further with me as I improve with photography throughout my life. 


In addition, for the majority of photos we had taken, that we were particularly fond of, we got to process and perfect them further. We used programmes such as photoshop, lightroom and colour efex. I really enjoyed doing this as it helped me to see which effects looked best for different types of images and also to experiment with lots of different ideas I had. Also, I learnt the effect of increasing and decreasing parts of the photographs I had taken by adjusting the exposure, clarity and vibrance, saturation and occasionally the contrast; this helped me to understand the best ways to edit different kinds of photos. Overall, my favourite aspect of this was having the ability to be creative with my favourite images. 

Due to having a project at school based on Cindy Sherman, Cerys and I took photographs which we could use for this. We researched the style of images Sherman had taken, the untitled film stills series, and attempted to recreate something based on this with the skills Christina had previously taught us. Using the techniques Christina taught us on editing programmes, I added film grain and black and white filters in order to create a Cindy Sherman styled image. I particularly enjoyed doing this as, whilst being away from school and doing something relatively new, I still got to base my week of work experience on my school work and can continue working with my projects from Christina’s studio when I am back at school. 



Throughout the week, I was fortunate enough to experience the other parts of being a photographer, as well as taking photographs, by sitting in meetings Christina had with customers such as: a meeting at her studio discussing a young child being photographed in the future and visiting a school to discuss the possibility of doing their school portraits for staff and children. I liked doing this as it gave me a taster of what would be to come if I did continue with my aspiration to be a photographer and gave me more of an understanding of the way running a business works.  

My favourite part of the entire week was by far photographing the LOROS colour fun mile in Hinckley town centre. This gave me a real experience of being a photographer and made me realise how enjoyable photography really is. In particular, I loved the atmosphere and how excited people were to be photographed giving me more inspiration to be a photographer. Unfortunately, the weather wasn't great however this certainly didn't hinder the excitement and the incredible atmosphere. I, personally, loved this event as it was in aid of LOROS, a charity which has once cared for two close relatives of mine in their last few days during their brave fight with cancer.






On our last day with Christina, we decided to complete the week with a photoshoot using studio lighting where we experimented with different shots and got to edit our favourite images as we wished. I liked doing this as I felt I could use all of my skills I've learnt throughout the week to complete a final product that I can look back on and use and remember how great this week has been. 



Overall, my week with Christina has been so so amazing and has given me so much more experience which I can carry with me in the future- I am so grateful of Christina helping Cerys and I this week and allowing us to do our work experience at her studio. I loved every second. 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Headshots and Portfolio Shoots: Here's What we Offer

Headshot requests are becoming more frequent so I thought I'd put together a post to share some recent work and explain the packages I offer in greater detail. Headshots are typically a simpler and quicker session so my packages are also a little simpler than what I offer in my full studio sessions. If headshots are what you or your child need its really important that you get good quality headshots that can stand out amongst the crowd. A headshot is a representation of you and often the first impression you are giving out to your audience, whether its casting directors, agents or college officials considering your application. A good headshot is more likely to get you noticed and ultimately get you further along your path. Making your headshots the best they can be should go a long way in helping you progress in your chosen path. I offer 2 different levels of service in order to make it as affordable and appropriate as possible. The first is a simple straightforwa

Never Work With Children or Animals

Or so the saying goes. But I have to say that working with dogs has been so lovely. They have been almost entirely a dream to work with. I say almost entirely because we have had a few moments where a dog has needed to settle. And one moment where the dog had settled but one of my cats decided to have a look through the glass door which, as you can imagine, rather quickly unsettled the dog. Still, that didn't stop us from creating incredible work. In fact it was during that shoot with the cat instance when I created two of my favourite pieces, shown below. (It was while sitting on the couch here when he noticed the cat peering through the curtain) I don't know if I've just been lucky or all dogs are just easy to work with. I photographed a french bull dog puppy and I thought that would be tough as he hadn't had time to be properly trained yet. But he did everything we wanted in no time at all. And this included the props we used here (below), which to me

Portraits Even a Teenager Boy Loves

Finally I've had the opportunity to photograph a young man in my studio again. And funnily enough this was the second time that week which is absolutely superb. In both cases these young men were just as enthusiastic to be involved as I was, which is something I don't often get when I'm working with very young children, my usual subjects. With young children I find my energy in their cuteness. But with young adults I get energy from their excitement over how the portraits are working out. I get such a buzz from the experience and that can keep me going for hours, often editing the photos straight after the shoot for hours more. Shoots for teenagers is something I've been wanting to focus on for some time. Its not something that I often get asked for though unfortunately. It tends to be parents of very young children who want to capture moments that are slipping through their fingers at lightening speed. Maybe its teenage moodiness that means these moments don&

London in Spring, Whats Not to Love?

Well I know there is still a lot not to love but I'm choosing to see the great things about London at the moment. I am having a ball this year visiting London as often as I can. Which is unusual for me since I usually prefer the comfort of my own home, in rural old Leicestershire. Staying home and avoiding people has always been the easy option. But this year, possibly due to the wonderful weather we keep having, has me longing for venturing out. Again, just like my last trip, I headed out with my good friend Panikos Hajistilly . Living in North London he finds it easy to meet up for our shoots. This time though I had more of an idea of the sights I wanted to use as the backdrops for my portraits. With it being spring I was in search of colour, preferably flowers. Admittedly. I didn't quite get what I was looking for. The white fronted terraced houses with pink magnolia trees we did not find unfortunately. But I did make it to Peggy Porchen's which was a must see on m

Fine Art Portraits of a Beautiful Young Girl

So this is really becoming my thing lately. I am having so much fun working with children individually where I can direct and interact in ways that bring the best out of my subject. This has certainly become a process now of creating rather than taking photographs. And its what I have always wanted to be, a portrait artist rather than a photographer. I cannot put into words fully just how rewarding this is. For each of these shoots (as with nearly all of my shoots) we begin with a consultation where we discuss what we would like to achieve in the shoot. Here we will consider the type of clothing and any possible props. We will look at both the clients clothes and my ever growing collection so we can pick what will work best. In all circumstances we are heavily guided by what the child in the portraits wants to wear as I see this as vitally important. If he or she is uncomfortable its going to show and the portraits won't work. But most are happy to play dressups and wear a com