Abbey Road Studios photographer-in-residence Simon Wheatley shares his top five insights
In 2018 Simon became photographer-in-residence here at Abbey Road Studios where he continues to bring his documentary expertise and cultural relevance. Simon joins us as a guest judge in the Underground Scenes category of the Abbey Road Studios Music Photography Awards 2023.
1. Cameras can obstruct photography - at that initial point where the photograph is conceived, in the heart and mind. So don’t be obsessed with equipment, go with whatever you happen to have.
Bedroom studio, Isle of Dogs
North Peckham Estate
2. Authentic photographers never try to find a ‘style’. It’s something that shapes itself organically over time.
3. The purpose of composition is to draw the eye into the essence of a photograph. Visual rhythm is vital.
Bus shelter, E14
4. One finds oneself as a photographer from constant and consistent practice. Don’t be deluded into the hype that shooting film makes one ‘superior’, especially if we can’t really afford to make mistakes given the exorbitant costs - because taking lots of pictures is how we learn.
5. There is something inherently lonely about being a photographer, and this loneliness is to be cherished. Imagine how I remember things: no mobile phones, internet or social media - just you and your camera, going deeply into the world around you and into your feelings…