Georgie Glass, Professional Food & Lifestyle Photographer, is our WeBlogNorth Featured Content Creator of the Week.
To celebrate our upcoming Beginner's Photography Workshop with Georgie, we wanted to feature her creative business story this week, and share some behind the scenes tips and tricks from her. If you're umming and ahhing about booking your ticket, read this interview and dive into Georgie's story.
Holly and I can both attest to how valuable the workshop is, Georgie has such an eye for imagery, a natural teaching style and has really levelled up our camera skills (we were both terrified of our DSLRs and their many settings before Georgie helped us!)
95 million photos are shared on Instagram alone every day. So how are you expected to make your content stand out from the crowd?
Often people don’t know how to create and develop a brand’s identity like a photographer can. Professional photography is one of the strongest ways to get your unique voice heard in a heavily saturated market.
Name: Georgie Glass
How long have you been a WeBlogNorth Member? 2+ years
Give us your Elevator Pitch:
I’m Georgie Glass, professional food and lifestyle photographer, and unlike other photographers in the field, I work directly with my clients to understand and establish their brand’s vision to create visual content which will engage their target audience.
After working with clients like Deliveroo, [yellow tail] wines and Harvey Nichols, as well as obtaining a University degree in photography, multiple awards and publishing a photo-book, I can confidently say my imagery has been tried and tested to sell to a consumer audience.
Now 6 years into an ever-growing and diverse career, I am prouder than ever to say I am a photographer born, bred and residing in Manchester.
How did you get started with photography?
Oh my goodness, it seems so long ago now! It all started when I was 13, and living in Hong Kong. I was shooting so regularly to send photos home to family and friends I think my parents must of picked up on my passion for it, and my photographic eye before I was really old enough to realise “hey, I’m interested in this!"
So now, 14 years later (wow) I’m a University of Gloucestershire graduate, with a photography degree under my belt and nearly 6 years of photographic and entrepreneurship experience under my belt. My passions have expanded and grown to include business, peer support and mental health, but the one thing that still burns deep within my core is my passion for photography, and I don’t think that’ll ever dissipate.
We know you work with a lot of food and lifestyle clients, but have experience in several industries - what’s your favourite subject to photograph?
At the minute, I have a serious interest in photographing activists and influencers.
Portraiture is an old favourite of mine, which I think I shelved when I went into food and lifestyle as more of a specialism back in 2015. Food will always hold a special place in my heart, but I think I’m heavily inspired by photographers work like Martin Parr, Corrine Day and Helmut Newton. There’s something special in their work; something raw, that you see very rarely in 21st-century social media.
I think channelling some of my heroes style into my own work is really inspiring me at the minute. I myself am very passionate about mental health and talk about it frequently on my social media, so for me, I love working with anyone who stands for something or is rooting for a cause. I have photoshoots lined up at the minute with Vogue Wonders and Rebecca Legon, which I am very excited about!
How would you describe your style and how it’s developed over the years?
I would say the best way to describe my work and how it’s developed is to say it’s become a lot more refined. In those early years of shooting, that’s the time to experiment and figure out what works for you, and what style you tend to lean towards more than others. But when you’re in your 3rd or 4th year of trading, that’s when you tend to look at your portfolio and say “okay well, this is what gets the most clicks” or “this tends to be the style of imagery which clients like in my portfolio” or even “my audience seems to engage with this the most” and that’s when you start perfecting and fine-tuning your process and your work.
Don’t get me wrong, always stay true to you and your voice, but if one thing tends to get you the gig over the other, you’re probably best shooting more in the style of the stuff which will get you those commissions.
Tell us about the most memorable shoot of your career so far and why:
Flippin’eck! There’ve been a few big ones up there, to be honest. I also think I spend too much time focusing on pushing forward, the next goal, the next milestone, I tend to forget to look back and acknowledge the big stuff - you know?
I guess the coolest, biggest brief I’ve had recently was that I was commissioned by Time Out London to shoot an editorial piece for their Manchester edition which came out earlier in March. It was my first editorial piece for a magazine outside of the North of England, so that felt pretty big and amazing, and publishing is something I would like to explore more of, so that was super exciting and a big progressional career step for me.
What camera’s in your kit?
Ooo good question! I have a few shooters at the minute; my main camera body is a Canon 5d Mark III and then I also have the 5d Mark II as my second shooter. It’s always good to have more than one camera in your kit bag, in case anything were to happen to your main camera. Then I have a little Lumix LX100 - which I think is quite old now but still does the trick. This little camera is usually what comes with me in my rucksack everywhere, so to events, meetings etc, so that if there’s ever a photo-opportunity, I never miss a trick!
We know bloggers will ask...does every blogger need a ‘proper’ camera?
It’s hard to say - I know the easy and more favourable answer will be ‘of course not! You can create incredible and relatable content right here on your smartphone!” but the truth of the matter is, there are certain things you really just cannot create on a mobile phone.
Yes the megapixel quality is awesome, and I can assure you that 25% of my IG feed is occupied with content I have ‘snapped’ on the go on my iPhone - but things like shallow depth of field, and high-quality images cannot really be obtained on anything less than a compact system camera. There’s still something special to me about holding that real life proper-style camera in my hands.
I’d say smartphones are a fabulous place to start, and then move on from there when you feel ready and can afford to explore other options. The Olympus Pen is a great blogger camera and a good place to begin. Don’t jump head first into buying a DSLR if you don’t feel ready.
We’re so excited to run another Beginner’s Photography Workshop with you in April - what encouragement would you give to someone who’s a complete beginner with photography?
I guess a key bit of encouragement would be, I know it seems hard and confusing right now, but I promise with some dedication and practice, it will all start making a bit more sense.
Photography is obviously very creative lead and comes down to photographic eye and composition. However, there is a lot of science and numbers that play havoc and can be quite confusing in those early days when you’re just starting out and trying to understand the basics.
We cover a lot of these things in the Beginner’s Photography Workshop, from aperture, shutter speed, ISO and even grain vs. noise. The aim of my workshops is to try and alleviate some of the stress from the numbers and science and bring some clarity to those photographic basics which are actually an integral cog to learning how to take a great photograph.
Oh my goodness, I really don’t know. I hate to admit it, I tend not to use a lot of Apps. I have two phones now - who the hell do I think I am?
So on my work phone, my most used apps are WhatsApp, Emails and Instagram. I know, boring! All the ones you already know. I’m actually really loving Facebook groups at the minute if that counts? I’ve joined a few for work, and a couple for personal too, and after going through a period of HATING Facebook with a burning passion it’s actually reigniting something inside me for the community lead platform that I think was overlooked for the last couple years.
Big shoutout to the Eventbrite App too - that’s probably another overlooked App that I love love love too! It’s great for listing and searching for local events, and I use it in both personal and professional capacities.
I guess more of a life hack than a productivity tip - don’t let looking at your phone, emails or social media be the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning. When I wake up, yes I lean over to turn off my alarm, but then the phone goes straight back down. I get up, go about my business, go make a coffee, fuss the dog, perhaps text a friend or two (on my personal phone!) and then about 20-30 minutes later, I will look at my work phone and/or social media.
I find having that moment in the morning, however early or late it is, just of peace is really beneficial to the quality of my day. Having this pause before the freelance-whirlwind ensues, helps me focus on my work until hometime.
Hardest thing about being a business owner:
Being lonely. The anxiety and stress of freelancer life. Feeling like I have no one in my field to talk to, because everyone feels like a competitor. Unfortunately, there can be a lot of negatives to owning a business and freelancer life.
That’s exactly why I have established my sister business Creative Council.
Creative Council is a platform dedicated to supporting creatives and helping you connect with fellow people in creative industries throughout the UK struggling with the same stuff you are. We endeavour to bring creatives together in a safe environment to discuss the things troubling them on a daily basis. Check out www.creativecouncil.co to find out more.
Best thing about being a business owner:
Small scale - flexible hours and start times. I love being able to go to the gym or for a long walk with the pooch and a podcast in the middle of the day.
Big scale - the fact that by owning my own business, all of this, all of this hard work, dedication, late nights, tantrums and heartache, is all for my own gain and growth.
I live for those little glimmers, those moments where you sit back and think “yeah, I couldn’t do this if I worked for someone else”. I do this for me, and only for me. Yes, I live to help and inspire other hard-working entrepreneurs along the way, that’s a beautiful bonus of the work I do.
But I love me and my blossoming career more than anything else in the whole world. And at the end of the day - that’s what matters.
Top tip for any aspiring entrepreneurs:
Don’t let the green-eyed monster eat you up - comparison is that bitch no one invited to the party but just turned up anyway… Only you can do you. You are your own unique selling point. Your talent will only get you so far, let your personality take you the rest of the way.
Georgie Glass is hosting an exclusive Beginner's Photography Workshop with us in Manchester on Sunday 7th April.
If you want to get to grips with your DSLR and learn how to create the photographs you really want, head here and grab your ticket now!
Any questions? Email us - firstname.lastname@example.org
Psst! WeBlogNorth members get an exclusive £10 off the ticket price, so if you've not already, consider joining us today. 🙂