Since the beginning of lockdown, I've had a lot of time to think about where I want to take my business. Actually, I think about this quite a lot anyway. My business will be three years old in November, and I can't believe how far I've come since then. So much has changed, and yet, so much is the same. Little old me, in my converted garage studio creating art and other nature inspired products for like-minded nature lovers. I love that it's just me, and I love that I get to imagine into reality all of the swirling ideas I have floating around in my mind. I suppose now, most of us small business owners don't really have a choice at the moment. Unless you live with a photographer, stylist, or a creative of some sort, we've been left in lockdown to fend for ourselves in our quest to continue to put beautiful works out there in the world for people to love.
Hat: Decorative Country Living
Earrings: Getting Stuff Done In Heels
Ribbons: Edie Rose Ashley
Dress: Cabbages & Roses
Basket: Oh Curio
Fabric: Edie Rose Ashley
Flowers: From my garden
This, however, is my dream scenario. I love getting involved in everything. If there's something new to learn, I want to learn it, to try, to experiment, and to see how far I can push my skill set. The creative skill that is imperative for an online business is photography. It's something I've always been drawn to, whether that's being behind the camera itself, or admiring the awe-inspiring work of others. Photography is visual story-telling at it's finest, and it's one of my first ports of call for inspiration, other than the natural world itself, of course.
I've wanted to step up my photography game for a while now. I've had a DSLR since University, and I've always taken my product shots with it, but most of my instagram shots have been captured with my iPhone over the years. I always thought my DSLR was too bulky or too big or too inconvenient to take around with me. However, with the lack of events to go to, things to photograph, people and places to see, I knew it was time to get creative again. I scoured Pinterest, as I usually do, and found hundreds of photos that I just fell in love with. I mean, yes, I could snap a quick picture with my iPhone, or, I could sit down and put some real thought into it, get creative, and photograph something I'm really proud of. Looking back I feel like I've always had the time, but now I actually make the time.
So, with the recommendation from Belle (@just_belle), I bought myself a decent tripod from Manfrotto on Amazon and got to work creating, imagining, and styling. I've been really pleased with the quality and the story-telling of the images that I just had to share them with you. That's the downside with instagram I think. Yes, you can post more than one photo, but I think sitting here and writing this story, and showing you a good selection of the photographs I've captured this morning makes me feel like you were there along with me.
For this particular story, I wanted to showcase my new batch of naturally dyed pink ribbons. I decided to just make two shades this time, instead of three, so that I'd have more quantity of each colour, and give more people a chance to purchase them. However, having an odd number of items, is always a hell of a lot easier to photograph aesthetically than an even number. Ah .. what to do, what the use, where are all the props, what colours will work best, what location shall I choose. Literally so, many, options and decisions to make.
I had treated myself to a Cabbages & Roses dress with my birthday money, and I knew I wanted to be wearing it in the shoot. Pink on pink on pink, duh. I also knew I wanted ribbon in my hair, and I am just obsessed with all the 'ribbon in hair' shots on Pinterest, that I thought I'd fashion some cute little plaits with daisies from the front garden and tie the plaits in ribbon bows. Lastly, I put the naturally dyed fabric sheets folded into one of my mum's beautiful baskets from Oh Curio, but felt there was something missing. That whole 'there's only two and not three pieces of fabric' just made the whole thing look a little odd. In came the creative genius that is my mother, as she suggested I put some flowers in to help balance out the whole scene. Et voila!
Now that all the main components were together, I needed to think about the location. We have this tiny little woodland clearing just up the street from where we live and its so cute. There are owl boxes, used mainly by the squirrels, and wild cow parsley and bluebells and other stunning flowers, and it just seemed perfect. Covered enough by the shade of the trees to avoid the beating sun, but also bright and full of life to provide the essential pops of colour. This little section of land is also the cut through to go to the village shops, so, I actually had quite a few passers by stop and watch me pose for 10 seconds until my camera timer went off, until I could finally chat to them. It's really nice to see how interested people are in your work, and they want to know what you're photographing, and you can share your creative stories with each other. It's a beautiful way to have a passing connection with complete strangers during such an uncertain time.
I'd love to know what you think to the photographs, and also what your photography process is? Do you take photos for your business, of family, or of nature when you're out on a walk? I'd love to start sharing suggestions and creative prompts with one another. I'm hoping to do more photoshoot diaries as I continue to experiment. Let me know what you'd like to see more of.
Thank you for being here; keep safe and well.