Have you joined our FREE 7-day email course for photographers yet?
It comes with a bonus printable workbook, over 50 free resources (such as video tutorials, Photoshop actions, overlays, brushes, and more), as well as exclusive access to our private Facebook group for photographers – how cool is that?
Anna Ashbarry is just one of the talented photographers taking advantage of our free course, and she recently got in touch to share some of her gorgeous work with us. We thought we’d take the time to not only showcase these stunning images, but also to ask Anna all about her career, inspiration, and her involvement in the course so far.
Q: When did your passion for photography first blossom and what inspired it to do so?
A: When I was in high school, I studied art although I wasn’t very good at it. I managed to convince my teachers to allow me to incorporate photography into the course. I was the only student to do this and it really allowed me to explore and adapt my photography skills and abilities. The first camera I owned was a little compact camera and I used to take it out with me when I walked the dog. After my parents saw how passionate I was about photography, they decided to buy me a DSLR which was a huge surprise and I was so grateful. From then on I took my camera everywhere and took pictures of everything. At that age I had no direction in mind, I was just enjoying seeing life through the lens.
I then went to college to study photography and this is where I began to look at other photographers and their work. I was still trying to find what I was good at and what I loved taking pictures of the most. I was lucky to have really supportive teachers and parents, I really think this helped my photography to blossom.
Q: Thank you so much for taking part in Whim’s free eCourse for photographers! How has the course helped you to overcome self-doubt and / or lack of confidence as a photographer so far?
A: I have been following Whim for quite a while, and so when I saw the eCourse advertised I just had to sign up! The main thing that the course has helped me with so far is confidence when submitting photography. This is something I have always lacked. A lot of people have suggested that I enter competitions and submit my work to various magazines. I did a few competitions and submissions about a year ago but not hearing anything back from them knocked my confidence.
The eCourse encouraged me to keep trying and it also allowed me to think a bit differently about submissions. I then decided to submit my latest work to Whim and here I am writing away. A couple of weeks ago I would have thought things like this never happen to me. It just goes to show, you have to keep trying and don’t let anything knock your confidence. If you work hard enough, one day your dream will come true.
Q: What lessons or parts of the course did you find the most helpful and why?
A: The most helpful part of the course for me were the questions about photography dreams and career goals. I think it’s really important to always have your end goal in mind when working on projects. Sometimes I get so busy and caught up in the moment I often drift away from where I am aiming to go. The mood boards and mind maps elaborate this further. Now when I come into my office, my dreams and goals are literally right in front of me. They are a constant reminder of why I am doing what I’m doing and they are a great motivation.
I also can’t wait to get started with the 10-day photo challenge. I have a big list of shoots I want to do for my portfolio, so it’s great having a list of shoots to do just for fun!
The other really useful thing I have taken away from the course is that I’m not alone. It’s always comforting to know that a lot of people are experiencing the same difficulties and struggles. Being a part of the Whim Facebook group allows us all to meet and discuss experiences and advise one another.
Q: Please tell us more about your gorgeous series featured – what was your experience like planning and capturing these images?
A: The featured series of images is actually my first beauty shoot. I had spent a lot of time prior to the shoot researching lighting, make up and retouching for beauty. For my first beauty shoot, I wanted to do something quite simple, but not too basic. Pinterest and Instagram is where I find a lot of inspiration for shoots and so I started to compile a few images and ideas together. I got in touch with the make up artist and aspiring model Katie, who I actually met on a Facebook group for photographers and models. We have worked together a couple of times now and we work really well together. We decided to do the shoot together with her doing her own hair and make up. This allowed a much more relaxed atmosphere, it wasn’t too busy with too many people around. This really allowed us to concentrate on the finer details.
I went for a paramount style of lighting with most images, only using one light with a reflector. I moved the light around a lot during the shoot to allow me to experiment with shadow and reflection. Katie did a great job with make up and modelling. When it came to retouching, I didn’t want to over retouch. Usually there is heavy editing in beauty photography and the model looks completely perfect and flawless. I decided to have a more natural look. Katie is so beautiful and so why not show this natural beauty rather than airbrushing out every blemish and out of place hair. We are both really pleased with the outcome and we are already planning our next beauty shoot with another model.
Q: What do you hope the not-too-distant future brings for your photography career? Do you have any upcoming or exciting plans you’d like to share with us?
A: I would really love to start collaborating with ethical brands and companies. At the moment I am concentrating on getting a strong portfolio and working with a range of models and make up artists, but I would definitely love to work with people who share the same views and passions as myself.
I am currently working towards getting my own studio in North Wales (UK) where I will be surrounded by stunning countryside. Working both in and out of the studio is a lovely combination when you have access to amazing locations!
Q: Lastly, where can our readers find out more about your work online?
A: My website (http://www.annaashbarryphotovideo.co.uk) is where you will find more information and examples of my work. I also use Facebook and Instagram (@annaashbarryphotovideo).
Katie, the model and make up artist can be found at @katiedsn @facebykatie1
We want to thank Anna so much for taking the time to answer our interview questions and strongly encourage you to check out more of her amazing work via the links mentioned above.
Want to also take part in our FREE 7-day email course for photographer? Simply join below. We can’t wait to welcome you!