Digitalab Featured Photographer: Angela Carrington
At Digitalab, we appreciate the power of photography, whether it’s personal or professional. We asked Angela at the Bigger Picture for one of her images and posed a couple of questions to find out exactly what it is she loves about photography and what she’d say to any enthusiastic photographer hoping to make a career out of their passion.
Tell us a bit about this image and why you chose it to be featured.
I chose this image as it perfectly sums up the type of work that we do here at The Bigger Picture. We are specialist PR/marketing photographers with images appearing daily across the regional and national press/media.
The specific reason I chose this shot was to give an insight into what lengths we will go to to get the required promotional image for a company.
A new world restaurant was opening in Newcastle upon Tyne in December and the PR agency involved in the launch wanted to create an inspiring image that would encapsulate the accompanying media story. It had to firmly root the new restaurant in Newcastle, so we needed an iconic location yet it had to be the type of image that people aren’t used to seeing. Obviously it also had to involve a restaurant ‘theme’. The idea was to line up over
30 of the new chefs along the Newcastle/Gateshead Millennium Bridge. An interesting shot no doubt, but I knew we could make it even more striking from the water and give a viewpoint rarely seen in PR photographs of the region. Luckily I had access to a powerboat through a nautical charity I am involved with and as such we organised the shoot for an early (cold!) morning on the Tyne. The lighting was difficult; low, bright sun which meant that the entire bridge was shadowed by the Baltic Art Gallery – exposure was challenging but we got the shot needed as you can see. I yelled up to the chefs to wave their kitchen props and circled in the boat a few times to get a variety of shots using different focal lengths and exposures. We then allowed the media onto the boat to do a quick ‘piece-to-camera’ for a local news channel. We also covered the VIP launch event and additional press calls for the project as part of our package.
Which styles of photography most interest/inspire you?
I have always been inspired and in awe of gritty social documentary photographers such as Sebastiao Salgado or war photographers such as Don McCullin. Their ability to capture emotion and beauty amongst the deprivation in society and horrors of war fascinates me. I’d like to be able to embark on photographic projects such as theirs perhaps a little later in my career when time and the constraints of running a commercial enterprise are lessened somewhat.
What one piece of advice would you give to an aspiring photographer?
Keep calm when under pressure. I’m often in situations where I have to get the ‘money’ shot in difficult conditions – that may be the weather, the light, the intensity of a press call or the time allowed to get the shot that is needed for the media. Stress in those situation can lead to mistakes such as having your camera on the wrong settings, forgetting about effective composition or simply missing the moment due to faffing with equipment. Use less kit, learn how to use it REALLY well so that it’s second nature and check your stuff over before the job commences. And enjoy!
Angela Carrington, the Bigger Picture