Collaboration is the biggest influence

Rachael Talibart is a photography enthusiast with interest in landscapes and nature. She is a Licentiate of the Royal Photographic Society and a judge for the Surrey Photographic Association.

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When did you first become interested in Landscape Photography?

I first became interested in landscape photography about 25 years ago.

I travelled several years around that time and my friends got used to seeing me return from my trips with unfeasibly large numbers of rolls of film.

I was a bit of a happy snapper though, rarely used a tripod and got my film developed on the high street. I converted to digital in 2008 and that was when the obsession really started.

Who, or what, are you?

Do you have any mentors or influencers who shaped your style?

I am an avid consumer of other people's imagery so there is no single, dominant influencer for me. Collaboration with other photographers is one of the biggest influences.

I am inspired daily by the enthusiasm of my business partner Tony Antoniou.

His style is different from my own and it is fascinating to see the creative way he approaches photography.

I benefitted from my collaboration with Jenifer Bunnett.

We have several projects on the go right now, including two joint exhibitions.

I had the pleasure of meeting Asmita Kapadia earlier in the year.

She is a very committed photographer who runs international workshops.

We have had a few photoshoots together now and I have enjoyed every one.

On Hampton Bridge

Whose work do you admire the most?

I admire the work of Jonathan Chritchley.

He has such a strong personal style and his recent book, Silver is stunning. I also enjoy the work of Kilian Schoenberger.

Jonathan's work is black and white imagery where as Kilian's is vibrant with natural use of colour, extraordinary for a shooter who is colour blind!

Painshill Park, winter

Can you tell us about one of your most recent favourite photo and tell us about where you took it? How your photographed it and how you processed it?

I took this image of the Vasco da Gama bridge during a trip to Lisbon in July.

It's an amazing bridge, incredibly long and it was one of my objectives for the trip.

I knew that there would be no way to give an impression of the bridge's majesty if I tried to capture the full length of it.

So I sought a composition that would incorporate something of the drama of the initial towers and then a glimpse of the first few miles tailing into the distance and off frame.

Shooting at sunset, with the sun behind and to the right of me, I was able to capture that thin line of pink which seemed to suit the colour of the concrete.

I shot at 35mm, f/9 and used an ND filter to lengthen the exposure to five minutes. Processing was straightforward, just some adjustment of verticals.

Vasco da Gama

Can you please introduce f11 Workshops to our audience?

At f11 workshops we offer photography day tours and workshops in Surrey and West Sussex.

There are plenty of tours out there in obvious beauty spots like the Jurassic Coast and the Lakes but very few in Surrey and West Sussex.

Both Tony and I live in Surrey (I have been here for more than 25 years) and I grew up on the West Sussex coast.

Our local knowledge means we have been able to put together some great itineraries, visiting lesser-known and beautiful locations.

As these locations are less discovered, our clients come away with more unique images.

We are committed to small group workshops, of 6-8 people, with two tutors, which enables us to offer a very individual experience.

Also we do not make our own images while on f11 days as we want to concentrate fully on our clients.

Some of our clients are experienced shooters who want to be shown new locations, and have a day out making images in the company of fellow enthusiasts.

Others are looking for more hands on help. Our high client-tutor ratio means we can provide both. I have to admit that we have so much fun on our own workshops that we really can't call it work!

Eastbourne sunset

What top 3 tips would you give to a photographer who is just starting in landscape photography?

Go out somewhere beautiful in the afternoon and stay there until dusk. Once you have seen how the landscape changes and just gets better and better with the light, you will be hooked!

Stop worrying about your equipment and get out there in the landscape. Some of the best photographs are taken with very ordinary cameras. What it takes is practice, practice, practice, and being out there in the landscape as often as you possibly can.

It's all in the composition. A beautiful sunset does not make a beautiful photo.

By thoughtfully composing your image, you move your imagery from recording to creating. By all means look at the work of others - it can really help you develop an understanding of what pleases your eye. Learn the 'rules' so you can bend or break them with intent. Then go out and create an image that reflects your own, unique vision.

You can get in touch with Rachael by visiting Rachael Talibart Photography website and Facebook page.

18 Sep 2014

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