Mike is an award winning Landscape and Wildlife Photographer, with his work being recognised in competitions, such as LPOTY, OPOTY for multiple categories and Scottish Landscape Photographer of the Year. His work is regularly published in leading photography magazines- Outdoor Photography, Photography Week etc and he carries out commissioned work for various publications including Countryfile.
WHAT FIRST GOT YOU INTERESTED IN PHOTOGRAPHY ?
From an early age I was always interested in wildlife, birds etc. I used to be an active wildlife photographer in my 20’s, then, I had a break from it for nearly 20 years, rediscovering my passion for it in the past 12 years.
WHAT EQUIPMENT DO YOU USE ?
For landscape work, I use a Cannon 5DSR, Carl Zeiss 15mm and 21mm F2.8 prime lenses, Cannon 24-70mm II F2.8 and Cannon 70-200mm F4.5-5.6 zoom lenses.
Lee filters ND grad,ND pro glass,Big Stopper,Little Stopper and a Lee Polariser.
For wildlife, I use a Cannon 1DX Mark2 and a Cannon EF 600 USM Mark 11 F4 lens and Cannon 1.4 and 2x Mark 3 teleconverters.
WHAT PIECE OF EQUIPMENT DO YOU USE MORE THAN YOU THOUGHT YOU WOULD ?
The Hoodman Hoodloupe, an essential piece of kit, if like me, you use Live View, for your landscape work.
WHAT SOFTWARE DO YOU USE TO EDIT YOU PHOTOGRAPHS ?
I mostly use Adobe Lightroom and try to get it right in the camera, occasionally I will use Photoshop.
WHAT IS THE BEST PIECE OF ADVICE YOU HAVE BEEN GIVEN ?
Always carry your camera with you. The number of times I have driven somewhere and seen a great sunrise/sunset or piece of wildlife action and regretted not having my camera.Also, to have a plan or a specific shot or two that you plan to take at a location, before you go out and to get ready to change your plans if the conditions dictate.
HAS ANY OF YOUR WORK BEEN PUBLISHED OR USED BY LARGE ORGANISATIONS ?
When I returned to photography a few years ago, I was lucky enough to have the BBC use an early photograph of a Barn Owl at dusk, as their banner for the BBC Nature Facebook page and BBC Nature twitter page for about a month.
The BBC also used a photograph of a Red Kite on Springwatch and landscape photograph on Winterwatch.
I have recently had a sunrise photograph used in Photography Week along with other local publications.
In July 2015,I have had a double page spread photograph published in The BBC Countryfile Magazine,after they commissioned me for a shot.
In November 2015, one of my images of a Red Deer Stag, was Shortlisted for Outdoor Photographer of the Year 2015-Wildlife insight Category.
In 2016 I had 3 images shortlisted for Outdoor Photographer of the Year 2016, one for Wildlife Insight category and 2 for Light on the Land Category.
Also in 2016 my only submission to Scottish Landscape Photographer of the Year, for the Urban category,was shortlisted.
I had a break from competitions in 2017 and had a shot published in Outdoor Photographer Magazine in early 2018, another shot published in Outdoor Photographer Magazine in 2019.
In 2020 I had 2 images Shortlisted for Landscape Photographer of the Year and had a shot published in Outdoor Photography Magazine.
LANDSCAPE OR WILDLIFE ?
I love them both equally.
I like nothing better than being on the top of a cliff, with a flask of coffee, waiting for the sun to come up and praying for good light.
I also love being at close quarters with nature, capturing and sharing things that most other people would never see.
WHAT’S NEXT ON THE AGENDA FOR YOU WITH PHOTOGRAPHY ?
I plan to build up my portfolio more and work on creating some nice abstract work, in addition to the wildlife and landscape work.
In the last few years I have visited Iceland and the Lofoten Islands in Norway,to photograph the Northern Lights, wild Sea Eagles and Reindeer which was one off the bucket list.
For more than 5 years I have successfully run Wildlife and Landscape Photography Workshops and I carry out Red Deer Workshops in October at Bradgate Park in Leicestershire,where I am licensed photographer,Osprey Workshops in June/July near Rutland Water and Kingfisher Workshops in March,July and September at my hides in Shropshire.
In addition to these workshops I also run Landscape Workshops in The Peak District,The Lake District,Snowdonia and Perthshire.
I also carry out one on one training for Landscape Photography,Wildlife Photography and Lightroom tuition.
2019 Workshops sold out with 2020 workshops online now and are filling up.