About Kate Hopewell-Smith
Hello and thanks for taking the time to look at my work. I hope you can see that I love what I do – which is all about the unique combination of the craft and the people. People like you who appreciate the value of great photography. It is really hard to try and sum up the ‘why’ behind choosing to be a photographer/visual storyteller. What lies at the heart of my ‘why’ is a fascination and respect for human relationships – how we all love and live. I specialise in Wedding, Portrait, Personal Branding Photography and Boudoir Photography but also undertake many Commercial and Corporate commissions.
I want to create really beautiful stand alone images that you will love and cherish for your lifetime and beyond. My favourite subject at school was art and back then my medium of choice was oils. I studied History of Art at degree level and now when people describe my work as ‘artistic’ I couldn’t be happier. Following graduation I always worked in creative industries – TV marketing, fine art publishing and brand design. I looked after the clients, ran the projects and helped the team create and deliver a vision. Then I moved out of central London to raise my children – studying photography in my precious down time – but loving every minute of it.
I cut my teeth taking pictures of my children, then my friends’ children. I was asked to shoot a wedding and finally I listened to those close to me and decided to set up my photography business. There has never been any doubt about my speciality, my photographic passion – and that is photographing people. And I’m convinced you can only do this successfully if you enjoy making connections and building relationships. It matters to me. I want to give you something individual and personal by taking the time to know you a little.
If you would like to see more of me – of the woman behind the camera then you can take a glimpse into my life and business on my personal branding gallery here.
It is very important to introduce you to Brent – he is my husband, a cinematographer and fellow Sony Europe Imaging Ambassador and also a co-director of both our training and destination businesses. Brent often shoots photography alongside so many of my clients get to meet him (not boudoir obv!). His core skill and love is video and aerial filming and as a result we recently launched our new destination wedding photography brand www.bylumiere.co.uk.
Brent and I recently got married in Dubrovnik, Croatia and it was really good for us to be involved in the planning of a wedding and to be the other side of the camera for a change. We chose our wedding photographer carefully and the images are beautiful, emotional and very precious – it has really shown me what we give to our clients and how important it is to capture beautiful memories of life’s special events. As a result of our wedding we have become an amazing blended family of 6 and my family mean everything to me.
Over the last few years I have also discovered how much I enjoy training and mentoring other aspiring photographers – sharing the love of this wonderful, frustrating but ultimately rewarding art. In 2016 Brent and I launched a small photography training school – this education initiative is called Training byLUMIERE which offers an alternative experience to the traditional education system for those interested in a professional career in photography. Between 2014 and 2016 I was chosen as one of a handful of UK Nikon Ambassadors and I have written monthly columns and features for every UK photography magazine and been published on numerous blogs.
In 2018 I made a significant shift from shooting on DSLRs to Sony’s full-frame Alpha series mirrorless cameras. Shortly after this, both Brent and I were made Sony Europe Imaging Ambassadors, a brand we are excited to represent and a role we were both delighted to accept. What does all of this mean? That you are in safe hands – which is actually quite rare in an unregulated industry.
It has been great to discover the kind of photographer I want to be. One who wants to give you something a little bit different, more considered, more unique if you will. So if that’s what you are after then get in touch and let’s work together to create something special. I don’t shoot hundreds of weddings a year because I want to give 110% of my energy and creativity to each couple I am lucky enough to work with. As different as all of my couples are they all have a love for photography in common and usually consider it to be an important element of their wedding day as a whole and are generally looking for a fine art wedding photographer – but also one that loves to document the story and moments of a wedding. If you are planning a wedding abroad and looking for a destination wedding photographer then please have a look at our luxury Photography, Film and Air byLumiere offering. As important as it is to try and give you a sense of who I am I would much prefer to have a chat with you on email, skype or the phone so please get in touch about possibly working together to tell your story.
SONY EUROPE IMAGING AMBASSADORS
Representing the Sony brand within the wedding sector of the industry is a new and exciting part of my photography journey. Brent and I are part of Alpha Universe – Sony have built this platform with the mission of it being ‘the most engaging platform for visual content creators by empowering them to reach their full potential through education, inspiration, and innovation‘. I am looking forward to sharing my work, techniques and tips to help those of you who also shoot Sony and for all photographers who want to be better and push themselves creatively. It might be worth keeping an eye on our photography training school website for news and education opportunities: www.trainingbylumiere.co.uk