James Connolly – European Wedding & Portrait Photographer

European based photographer James Connolly shares his experience   of becoming a photographer after starting his career as a professional poker player.

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James Connolly

(from James’s website – go here for more info.

James Connolly
James ConnollyEuropean Wedding & Portrait Photographer
An award winning photographer in Landscape, portraits, and Digitial Manipulation.
Twice runner up in Digital Camera magazine and photo prize winner. Featured in various online websites for photography.

I view the art of photography as a subtractive process, a distilling of reality into a personal vision. As such I often use the tools of modern photography – different filters, digital enhancement – to try to capture in an image the emotions I felt at the moment I tripped the camera’s shutter…

Show Notes:

  • Intro Questions:

    • Tell us how you got into photography?

      • Relatively new to photography, was following other photographers and three years ago I purchased my first camera.  Followed a Street Photographer in London, Bansky

      • Wanted to be a Poker player originally (was making some money – played in the European Poker Tour)…used the mindset of repetition to improve my skills.  

      • No real artistic background

      • Found photos from Sean Archer which inspired me

      • Observed a photographer with a step ladder which made me look at different ways of taking photographs…this photographer spent a little time with me and gave me pointers that helps me today.

    • Are you a full time photographer?

      • Yes…full time photographer within three years of starting

      • Being in London has helped, self promotion, networking, many opportunities.

  • Weddings & Portraits:

    • Nikon shooter; favorite lenses

      • 85 Prime

      • 24-70 Nikkor

      • 80-200 Nikkor; mainly used at weddings

    • How did you learn to use flash

      • Learned from a photographer out of South Africa

      • His photographs had a certain look, especially outdoors.

      • Practiced at first shooting with the sun and strobes on trees to get the correct balance

      • Attempt to slightly underexpose and Dodge/Burn in Photoshop

    • How do you pick you locations?

      • Depends on my mood…winters I am in the city while in the summer I am to go where I can find the sun…not much sun in London.

    • Adobe Photoshop / Lightroom?

      • Photoshop mainly

      • First step is the High Pass

      • Need to resize the image at the beginning…if posting to Facebook

        • Image Size; 2048 x 1365 (6×4)

    • What is the portrait business like in Europe?

      • In the US you have a culture of hiring a photographer while in Italy you won’t see that, only hiring for events / weddings.  In London, there is no real market…such as  Senior Photography

      • Most of the jobs are for Portfolio filing versus a portrait session

    • How is the wedding business in Europe?

      • Got into weddings with a photographer that does portrait (glamor) work

      • Really enjoy taking wedding photographs

    • Where do you do most of your photography?

      • Now is the season for bookings…mainly weddings

    • Separate Website – own site and weddings?

      • Yes, it helps since there are two photographers.  I also link from my own site to the wedding site.

    • Any issues at weddings that helped you improve?

      • First wedding in Poland…don’t know the language and you need to guess what is coming next.  Watching people for what is going to happen.

    • Favorite part of wedding photography?

      • London – many varied weddings

  • Wrap Up:

    • What about the future?

      • Looking to get into videos, however, it is way more complex and expensive.  You have to edit the video which is time consuming

    • What is Viewbug?

      • Came out before 500pix, very nice platform for posting photos.  Go into competitions where you can submit your photos.  Voting systems…awards. 

    • Where can people learn more about James?

      • Website / Facebook

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