Based in Byron Bay
0414 011 991
Getting to know Lisa Ford
Tell me about Lisa Ford Photography
Lisa Ford Photography has been established since 2000 when I graduated from the Queensland College of Art (Griffith University) with a Bachelor of Photography. I am also an Associate Member of the Australian Institute of Photography (AIPP).
I am a boutique studio providing a personalised service while keeping things relaxed and easy to provide the best experience possible. I have specialised in wedding photography since 2001 and have built relationships with fantastic Australian businesses that enable me to deliver beautiful custom made products to my clients providing a bespoke service I can be proud of.
How would you describe your style?
Elegant, classic, sometimes quirky, candid, but above all, I try to stay true to who the couple are naturally and capture their personalities and relationship while gently encouraging them in order to bring the best out in them.
How many weddings do you average per year?
In order to devote the time required to completing a wedding commission – especially when custom designing and handcrafting beautiful albums and books – I average 23 weddings a year. This is done on a full-time basis along with other commissioned work I receive and my own projects. Because I am a boutique studio and most things are done by me, it's important to balance this number so each wedding receives the attention required.
Your company specializes in wedding photography. What is it like to capture such special moments for others?
An honour. A wedding is a very special and significant day in someone's life along with births, christenings, 18th and 21st birthdays and graduations, but a wedding has a difference in that it involves someone else, the person you have chosen to be your life partner, to commit your everything to and be the best you can be for each other. It's delightful to capture the moments when the vows are exchanged, rings are given and the first kiss as husband and wife is had. It always makes me smile.
Why choose to specialize in wedding photography?
I came by photographing weddings via a fashion photographer I assisted after graduating. Calls would come into the studio asking if he shot weddings - which he didn't – and one day he looked at me and said "you should do weddings" and promptly told someone who rang one day that he didn't photograph weddings, but his assistant (me) did - ! That began the weddings for me and I chose to specialise in it because I enjoyed it, I could see that I had the ability to photograph them and my preferred style and my major at university – photojournalism – lent itself well to the occasion; much better than war zones and poverty stricken places which I couldn't do but admire PJ photographers like Stephen Dupont and Tim Page for. It's the ability to see (sometimes anticipate), create and capture all within seconds usually.
Do you have an assistant/2nd shooter that accompanies you on wedding assignments?
I do have an assistant/second photographer who works with me sometimes, mainly on a full day wedding coverage with larger bridal parties but I'm on my own for the majority of commissions. If a second photographer is something the couple would like, it's not a problem; it only has to be requested. As I use two camera bodies each with a different lens set up, it's quick and easy for me to change cameras as required (they are always on me) very quickly and cover the wedding – ceremony especially – efficiently while being as unobtrusive as possible (but still get "the shot"!).
Can you describe how and when you use flash, video light, reflectors and natural light during a wedding?
95% of my photographic coverage is done using available light (natural light).
Reflectors and diffusers are always with me and I use them a lot when photographing prior to and after the ceremony. I'll also use objects that are quickly at hand like the lid of a white shoe box to reflect light onto the brides shoes, jewellery, flowers etc.
Sometimes in darker environments or if I want to specifically achieve an effect, I'll use on camera flash but it is always bounced off a ceiling, wall or something else. On camera flash is used at reception venues the most as it is usually a darker time of day and indoors with very little available light to work with.
Video lights are not something I use, preferring to find something in the surrounding environment – natural or man-made – to utilise that will achieve what I want and also add something to the image.
Where would be your dream destination wedding?
What is your favourite recent image you have shot recently? Can you describe its creation in regards to location, lighting, composition, camera settings etc., also your thoughts when creating the image and what it means to you?
Recently I photographed a wedding where we went to the neighbouring farm of the bride's family for photos. There was this beautiful tree in the paddock with long grass, Mt Warning in the background framed perfectly by the tree and the light was soft and muted with a hint of rain. It personified who the bride and groom where, what they loved in life and also captured them how they are together and of course their love for each other. My FAVOURITE image though is the one on my web site, on the Home page; this wedding was April 2011, but it still takes the cake and the couple love it, it's their favourite too.
Tell me about a unique, funny, or interesting experience you have had while photographing a wedding.
I was photographing a wedding up at the lighthouse and we could hear this noise getting louder, a thumping noise. All of a sudden, a black hawk helicopter rose up in view from Wategos and buzzed the lighthouse. This was nothing specific to the wedding at all and was unplanned by the bride and groom, they didn't know about and didn't know anyone to do with it, but as it turned out, I knew the pilot - ! To top it all off, the helicopter did it twice. I've yet to thank him for that. All was good though and it was all taken in stride with everyone even waving to the crew in the air and them waving back.
Describe your typical day at work.
Sitting in front of a computer. 20% of a job these days is out in the field and 80% spent in post-production. Post-production can be quite fulfilling though when you finish creating the image as you saw it in your imagination on capture while on the job. The capture of the image is still the most important part though, if you don't get that right, you either don't get to complete the image as you saw it or make a lot of unnecessary work for yourself and maybe not even be able to finish the image as you wanted - !
What do you love the most about your job
I love that I love my job! I get to do what I am passionate about and be creative. I also get to deliver memories to people that they will cherish and it's a wonderful, moving thing to be told by a client that they will cherish and image (or images) for the rest of their life for whatever reason. I've sadly had clients pass away, I've had family members of clients pass away and to date, when this happens, they have always contacted me to let me know and tell me they are thankful and appreciative of the images I created for them of this person/s. We don't last forever, but memories do and the documentation of our life gets passed down through generations. The best thing is, I get to create these documents and hopefully they last for many, many years and one day someone will look at an image I took and say "I love these old photos, they are so beautiful" as I do now of photos taken in the early 1900's and earlier.