Friday, January 22, 2016

Feature Friday with Cara Hodge Photography!

Caroline, the talented face behind Cara Hodge Photography, was the winner of last week's 'outdoor adventures' challenge, and she has graciously shared some more of her gorgeous work!  Read on to find out what sparked Caroline's passion for photography, and to find out what is in her camera bag.

1. Please tell us about yourself...
My name is Caroline Hodge and I'm married to a razor sharp (and funny) Irish guy, Nick, and am a mother to two children, Florence Chantal, 15, and Benedict Gabriel, 5.  I'm from rural Wiltshire, a small town called Bradford-on-Avon in England, but since moving away from the area after university I've lived in London, New York, and in recent years, Abu Dhabi in the U.A.E. I instantly loved the buzz and connection of bigger cities, but Abu Dhabi was a much slower pace of life which took me a while to adjust to. Now I've learned to embrace and even love this city for all the wonderful people I've met from all over the world and the unique life-changing experiences I've had here. 

2. Can you describe your style in 3 words? Why those words?
 I feel my style is much evolving all the time, but here goes... Peaceful. Frank. Emotive. I would say that probably a sense of calm or peace describes it best.
I tend to use rich dark colors which I find are very emotive to me. I love exploring color and the way light changes them. Eventually I'd like my pictures to sometimes also have a dreamier look, and am looking forward to playing with focus and getting my hands on a Lensbaby in 2016.

3. What sparked your passion for photography?
When my son was about 18 months old, I got some family pictures done here in Abu Dhabi and when I saw the pictures for the first time, I held them in my hands and was struck by the conviction that photography  was something I really wanted to do. I kind of fell in love with the process of photography right there and then.

4. What's in your camera bag right now?
I only have one lens. The Sigma 1.4, 35mm. This lens definitely helped my photography along. Up until purchasing this lens in March of last year, I was using the lens that came with my Nikon D7000. The wider aperture has helped me a lot, though I still take pictures at all different apertures, depending on the story. Next up will be a Lensbaby, I just haven't decided which one yet! 

5. What is your dream shoot or project?
 My dream shoot is when my 15 year old lets me take her picture, because it's quite rare and she is actually very photogenic and has a brilliant stare! I'd love to take more pictures of teenagers and young people. It's that precious age, halfway between the magical age of childhood and the responsibilities (and sometimes magical) aspects of being an adult. It's fragile and powerful, all mixed in. I also love taking pictures in wild and empty places. I need to plan a trip into the desert soon!

6. What are some of the misconceptions you had about photography and photographers at the beginning of your photography journey? Have they changed, and how?
I started my photography journey with very few preconceptions (other then all the pictures  knocking around in my imagination, carried down through the years). But in terms of photography as a discipline, I knew nothing besides the basic notion that I should hold the camera and press the shutter button. In some ways this was a marvelous place to start because I really has this great feeling I could do whatever I wanted. Other times it was confusing and bewildering!  I did do a couple of workshops, of just a few hours, to learn to operate a DSLR, and I followed this up with some amazing Bloom Forum Workshops. We're lucky that we can grow through an amazingly supportive online community. I still feel as I did on the outset, that photography is very much a journey in creativity.

7. What advice would you give to newbie photographers? What advice do you wish you'd been given at the very beginning?
No one will see the world quite like you will. You are unique. You have a story. It may seem fairly ordinary and unremarkable at times, but then it's remarkable to simply be alive at any given moment and being able to document that. Enjoy the process, don't rush to get to a destination. It may be the "wrong" roads or accidents that bring you to your style. In  the end your style or voice will most likely represent YOU. Who you are. Take time to maybe write a list of adjectives, how you would describe yourself, and then look at some of your favorite pictures. Could the same adjectives you used to describe yourself,  be used to describe your pictures? Do they best reflect who you truly are at heart? I found this exercise very helpful to do. I tried to look up this online article I'd read over a year ago about finding your voice, but I never found it again. If I do, I'll post it.

Find more of Caroline's beautiful work here:

1 comment:

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