I don’t have a studio for Photoshoots. I have a mobile one, which I can set up in my house (or a clients house), but mostly, I like to do Photoshoots on location. I find they make much nicer pictures, more natural. There’s more variety to the images than studio work and I prefer working with natural light.
That is my personal view anyway, and I’m not knocking studio work at all. I very much enjoy it. But getting outdoors is what I enjoy most!
There are plenty of great locations in Bristol for Photoshoots. But I have two firm favourites:
Blaise Castle Estate
This is my favourite place to do a photoshoot in Bristol. I love it! There’s so much variety there. Plenty of woods, open spaces of grass, streams, ponds, beautiful columns on a bath stone building, stone walls - for a photographer this makes lots of brilliant backdrops for a wide range of photos in one place!
Then of course, there are the facilities. Cafe for that emergency cuppa, toilets (always needed!), a free car park, and a brilliant playground to bribe kids with. Perfect!
I’ve done a huge number of shoots up there, and it continues to be my go to location for all of these reasons! Here are some examples.
For similar reasons as Blaise Castle really. The variety of backdrops for photos within a very short distance.
I often start of in Queen’s square, where you’ve got a nice open park space with grass and trees, plus the statue in the middle is nice to stand against with the lovely Bath stone.
There’s millennium square a very short walk away with the fountain wall thingies, and lots of interesting textures to photograph someone against. Each of the car park entrances has different coloured walls inside (purple, yellow, orange etc) which give you great bright colour backdrops.
Then you have the water nearby! A whole other style of images! I usually walk past the Arnolfini (cobbles and trees next to water making a lovely backdrop), then over the bridge. You can go left to shoot against railings, cobbled and houses with water and boats in the background, or right to walk down past M-Shed, where you have train tracks and carriages, and industrial style backdrops. Here are some examples.
There’s so much more too, but that’s usually where I start to think I’ve already got too many images.
As for facilities, there are of course plenty of places nearby to grab a cuppa and go to the loo. But parking isn’t free. And traffic to get down there also leaves a lot to be desired. But still worth it once you get there!
There are of course lots more. Ashton Court is great, Clifton is lovely, the Downs obviously. Old Sneed Park Nature Reserve another that a photographer friend took me to. All great. But we all have our favourites, and these are mine!
Got any recommendations yourself? Share them in the comments!