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Design Aglow's Wedding Week 2016: Lauren Campbell

Design Aglow's Wedding Week 2016: Lauren Campbell

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself, where you live, and how you got into photography.

 Hi! I'm Lauren. I'm from Canberra, Australia and I adore photographing weddings and couples in love. I first fell in love with photography when I was quite young. It’s something that has always been with me, even when I didn’t quite know it yet. My first camera (which I still own to this day) was a red, plastic, Coca Cola film camera that I won in a spelling competition at the age of seven. I took this camera with me everywhere, and even though at the time I didn’t think it would lead me anywhere, looking back now I can clearly see my passion for photography was ripe at that young age.

With the exception of my darkroom and film photography classes in high school, I am mostly a self-taught photographer. At university, I actually studied and became a qualified nuclear medicine scientist. I loved the people and patients I would get to meet and help, but I still felt a craving for a creative outlet and a way to record how I saw the world around me. My amazing husband encouraged me from the very beginning, and was the one who got me my first full frame camera. Since then I made it my mission to shoot as much as I possibly could. Early on in my journey I was also lucky enough to be mentored by a couple of amazing photographers who I really looked up to which gave me such a great introduction to the industry. To this day I am so grateful for their insight and encouragement!

Your photographs pull the viewer into a fairytale. They are so dreamlike and almost magical. How do you view the scene around you, in order to capture it in such a specific way?  

Thank you so much! That is really sweet! I tend to find a lot of inspiration for my photographs in the environment around me. I love watching the seasons change and the different colours, textures and moods they bring. I love to create images with a romantic yet really raw emotion to them. My main source of inspiration however, is in the personalities, connections and intimacies of the people I photograph. I always want my images to be a true reflection of who they are and how they are together.

In terms of post production workflow, I start off by culling my images using photo-mechanic. I then sort and apply all my tags and meta data copyrights etc. Then I back up the wedding collection onto my external drives, and also onto a portable drive that I carry with me. For editing, I start off and do 90% of the work in Lightroom. I tend to start at the beginning and edit each photo one at a time. I know it's not the most time saving way of doing it but I really like to treat every single image with care and attention. I sometimes pop in and out of Photoshop as I go if I need to remove certain distracting elements in the image. I'm very picky and if my eye gets drawn somewhere I don't like I'll tend to get rid of it. After I have completed the colour treatments and removed all the distracting elements I'll add a little grain give a very light sharpen to certain areas and then upload to my online client proofing gallery.  

What is the most rewarding part of being a wedding photographer?  

While I love planning out shots and bringing creative ideas to life, I think my favourite moments during a wedding are those of spontaneity when I catch a glimpse of something truly intimate and honest. One story always comes to mind when i get asked this question. After completing the images for one particular wedding I shot last year, I received the most heartfelt note from the bride. She told me how her heart sank when she saw a candid photo I had taken of her uncle enjoying himself with his wife at their wedding. She went on to tell me how he had passed away suddenly the week after the wedding, and she was so so glad to have that photo of him and would cherish it always. It really helped reinforce to me that simple little moments like these at weddings are so important. They mean everything.

 If you could go back to the beginning of your photography career, what are 3 things you wish you had known or done differently?

  1. I wish I had known about the accounting software Xero when I first started. It took me about a year and a half of manually writing everything down before I found it. It was tough!!  
  2. I wish I had realized about how physically demanding shooting weddings was. I went out and bought a really trendy over the shoulder camera bag thinking it would look really chic. Halfway through the wedding my shoulders and neck were aching so bad I had to keep putting it down. After that I knew I had to get something more practical so I went for just a very simple black rapid backpack style camera bag. Now my back loves me! Oh, and pockets are your best friends on a wedding day!
  3. One thing I am still working on improving even now is booking in time for myself and for my family. When first starting out I took on anything and everything I could and slowly I started to get overworked and hardly saw my friends or family. It's easy to get swept up in building your business, but I definitely think it’s so so important to reserve time for yourself and for your family. After all, that’s why we shoot weddings in the first place isn't it? To capture those family connections. So don't forget to give some TLC to your own too.

___

 

 


 
Lauren Campbell is  a photographer based in the ACT. A Novocastian at heart, she  lovingly calls Canberra home and has completely embraced the icy chills of winter and the wonderful colours of a real autumn. When she is  not taking photos, her favourite pastime is adventuring with her husband...jumping in the car, turning the stereo up loud and driving off to a new town with him. It's not just the destinations she loves, it's the journey too. And that is the attitude she brings to her photography.

 To see more of Lauren's work, visit her at laurencampbell.com.au.

 




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