Claudia Carter’s photographs are that carefully calculated blend of intimate, well-shot and warm that would make even the most seasoned wedding photographer envious. Far from the cliche, brightly lit symmetrical shots we are all used to seeing framed, her images are imbued with a sense of serenity and a wider understanding of the ranges of human emotion. I asked her some brief questions to help me understand where this uniqueness comes from…
Estilistas: What first inspired you to pick up a camera and get photographing?
Claudia: My father used to have these two framed prints that travelled around to every house we moved into, one of an old cinema sign lit up against the night and another of a post-war German post box. I remember feeling that they were my consistent throughout my childhood and how magical it was to be able to catch a moment in time that would have such an emotional connection with a person. I'm fascinated by the world.
E: What do you think is the mark of a good photographer?
C: A willingness to see the world as it is. To experience the discomfort as well as the luxury. An open mind and a passion for creating for the sake of it.
E: You photograph a lot of weddings - what's the most challenging thing about photographing someone's big day?
C: From an emotional point of view I always have the consideration that it's such a responsibility. I always strive to make clear to my couples that they are hiring me for the way that I see the day and not for what they expect from their wedding photography; I tell them it will never be what they thought it would be. There's a higher expectation almost because it is their wedding day and you can't redo it! From a technical point of view it's being able to deal with any lighting situation you walk into - I can't start moving people closer to windows halfway through their ceremony! It's taught me so much about flexibility within my work.
E: How would you describe your photographs, in one word?
E: What has been your favourite photo-shoot project to date?
C: Actually my favourite shoot was before I ever pursued my photography full time. I photographed a boxing match, this is going back around 6 years, at Edinburgh University. It was so real; there was you no getting away from what it was. My intention wasn't to make it look pretty or in fashion or appropriate. I wanted the blood and sweat. It was exhilarating. Sadly I no longer have those images...it is something I would love to do again.
E: Who are the photographers that inform your work?
C: Linda McCartney, Don McCullin, Bailey (his attitude more than his photography itself). Mostly my influences come from outside photography, films and light and nature.
E: Finally, the age old question, film or digital?
C: Whatever helps you to best achieve what you see in your mind. For me mostly that's digital because I'm an impatient person. It suits my personality. However I will say I do spend time making my digital images look more rough round the edges which film does so much better. I just hesitate with the uncertainty of it.
Claudia’s photography, whether it is shot on digital or on film, seems to retain to nostalgia and soul of analogue photography - please go and have a look at her other photographs, even if you don’t have a wedding coming up, as they are delightful viewing for anyone!
Find Claudia around the web: