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@Gary Hill
The Art of the Portrait


@Johanna Birch

My Background


I've always had a passion for photography.


Alongside studies and degree which took me to a career in the City, I always kept my camera close to me.  I  used to develop my own film in a dark room and loved watching how the pictures slowly appeared - faces, wide eyes staring back at me and that still influences, quite dramatically, the way I take shots today.


Much of my early photography was when travelling. The stunning scenery and the people I met from Tibet to Cambodia, India, South America, East Africa, New Zealand and Japan, just took my breathe away.  My work was spotted and commissioned and after that, followed various courses, competitions and lots of practice.


Early in the morning or towards the end of the day is when the light can be at its best. Although that's not always practical when shooting a wedding or working with children, so I work with the light, often softer or diffused light. And whilst the weather too can bring its own challenges, when the light is right under the twisted hazel tree in Queen's Park, in the Springtime colours of Kew Gardens, in the magical dappled bluebell woods or amongst the Autumn leaves at a secret spot I know on Hampstead Heath, I've nature to thank that the backdrops are so breathtaking. Outdoor shoots are always good and always different.  I work on location, at a client's home or workplace and do shoots too at my home, studio and garden.

I have two kids. I try not to take too many shots of them, otherwise I find that you can live your life from behind the lens. The ones I can't resist though, are those moments when they don't know I'm watching, or when I sneak a shot of a cheeky look in their eye.

As an observational photographer I endeavour to capture natural interaction as well as those 'magic moments' like the glance of my friend over to his new bride, across the crowd at their wedding or that second when you never knew your child could pull that face!


I can't promise I get every one of those moments but I try.

I regularly photograph bump, baby, children and family, portraits, animals, weddings and corporate photography. 


To book or discuss a photoshoot, an event or even a location, please contact me,  Sonya, on 07939 070773

or email:


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