Six months into his FocalAgent career, Steve Corbett has become known as an open, communicative and talented photographer in the South Wales region. Having served in the Royal Navy for 23 years, he was hoping to take his long-term amateur photography to a professional level. He Googled "property photography" last summer and began his transition.
Now Steve has standardised his workflow to impress a number of South Wales estate agents, he's looking forward to exploring drone photography in the near future.
Shooting with FocalAgent since: August 2016
Locations covered: South Wales
First camera: Pentax K1000
Favourite photographer: Vivian Maier
You're a relatively new addition to the tribe! We'd love to know more about your life as a photographer before joining us.
I've been a keen amateur photographer since I was a teenager and I'm still a member of Bridgend Camera Club. I served in the Royal Navy for 23 years so was ideally placed for travel photography and this is something I still strive to do.
One day, I was googling about photography opportunities and after searching 'property photography, ' I came across your site. FocalAgent opened the door to turning my hobby into a profession. It also helps me focus on what matters: I'm a photographer at heart and would much rather spend my time shooting than trying to find business. That's why it's perfect for me.
We're glad to play a part in that. What's next for you?
Well, this is a totally new career path for me and working with Thibine, my Business Coach, has allowed me to hit the ground running. Now, I have plans to diversify my work to include such things as drone photography and to promote myself online.
What changes have you noticed in your practice over the last six months?
I've streamlined my workflow, I have all the settings I need programmed into my camera's custom functions and found shortcuts in Lightroom such as applying import presets and bypassing HDR preview pane to speed up my post processing. I'd say I spend around ten minutes per job on post processing.
It can get busy in South Wales; how do you balance this with your other photography work?
When things are busy, I try to be pragmatic with timing. I keep an open communication with the client and vendor and if it's right, I ask if it's ok to arrive early to a shoot. Remaining flexible is important, and I never turn down a short notice urgent job.
Although FocalAgent is 95% of my photography work, workload has never been a problem for me. South Wales is a busy area but I share the work with other photographers in the region.
If you could give one piece of advice to another FocalAgent photographer, what would it be?
The portal acts as a back-up to my paper diary and Google calendar, so keeping the information on a job updated as things change is really important. It's a good record and source of information for you and everyone else, and will help you standardise your workflow, delivering a consistently high quality service.
All photography in this post is courtesy of Steve Corbett. Check out the rest of our Photographer of the Month interviews here.