I always remember borrowing my Grandad’s film camera over my teenage years and taking pictures of friends at school and family way before camera phones were a thing. For the most part the cameras would be returned ‘not working’, i.e. broken! Luckily for me I had a very forgiving Grandad. I was also lucky to have had a friend called Pete who would develop reams of film for me as he worked at Kodak in Telford. I once returned from a summer holiday aged 16 with 24 rolls of film, I was definitely snap happy.
Whenever we had family holidays someone would always have a camera to hand resulting in lots of picture albums to look back on; one of my favourite things to do. My other Grandad, Stanley, had his own style nailed; every picture being lop sided and people with the top of their heads chopped off. While my own images at this point weren’t technically perfect, I still love them and am happy to have them to look back on.
Along the way I never pursued photography in my education, and it never crossed my mind you could photograph professionally. When university came calling I read Media Communications and left with a 2:1 thinking I would be producing radio shows in London. Instead I took a sales job which saw me through living in London for four years. It was in this time Grandad bought me my first Nikon DSLR. I spent weekends visiting galleries and my favourite has to be the National Portrait Gallery and V&A, I love looking at people, at the details of their face.
When I moved back to Shropshire I took a black and white film course at the Shrewsbury College and learnt the old school way to photograph and develop in a dark room and from there, things gradually got to this point…!
I’m fairly self-taught with the odd training day here and there, but my biggest investment in my business so far was a six month training foundation programme. in 2016 with ByLumiere. Kate Hopewell-Smith and Brent Kirkman have really helped me focus on my wedding photography business and what I want to deliver to you; images of love, happiness and memories to pass through generations.
I love training, meeting other photographers and believe there is always something new to learn and attend different workshops annually.
I would love to be able to give to you, what my Grandad and family gave to me; memories and sentiment of a period of time in the past which otherwise could be lost forever. The albums piled up in my Grandparents and parents home are tangible memories for me and my family to continue to share with future generations.
It would give me the greatest pleasure to do this for you too.
Laura May x
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