Honestly it would be a lie to say that I was inspired from a young age to become a photographer or that my biggest inspirations were the classic photographers that so many people know about.
The real story is there were a number of reasons I’ve ended up with the career I have.
The earliest photography story that always gets shared with anyone from my grandparents is when I was about six or seven we were at the Brawlads in Galashiels which is similar to a galaday but with hundreds of horses instead of floats. At one point they cross over the gala water and my grandad handed me a camera and said right take some photos and if you run out its alright as I have another spool back home (ah the days before everyone had camera phones and digital cameras haha). So I went on and my mission was to take photos of all the horses crossing the water, in my mind I didn’t want to leave any horse out of these photos! Well I turned round to my grandad and said thats its finished! He couldn’t believe it and had expected the spool to last until later on into the day as theres a few different parts to the ceremony. Silly story but its one that they always like to remind me of and laugh about. The best part of the whole thing is the photos were just full of two womens heads and tiny horses really far away in the background haha. I’m sure it taught my grandad to be clear with instructions after that!
I tried hard to find one of the photos taken that day with no luck. I’m sure they’re still around somewhere. If I come across any I will update this and add it in.
Heres a more recent Braw Lads to shot the kind of photo I mean although the old one was much further away, heads at the front and the horses were going the other way.
One of the biggest reasons why I ended up in photography is quite a personal one. When I was eleven my dad died of cancer.
When your eleven your oblivious in a way, to me it felt very sudden I wasnt expecting it at all. Suddenly he got very ill and within what felt like maybe one month or so he was gone. I’m not sure of the actual time scale but from my perspective at the time that is how it happened. My aunty had just got her first digital camera around the time just before he became ill so me and my dad took a photo together that day. Its my most treasured photo ever. I’m sure it was the last photo we took together. Its one of the very few I have of my dad and me and its not even a particularly good photo of me. That is a huge factor why I think its super important to document your family life which is so easy now with camera phones and cheap digital cameras which are available everywhere. I regret that I don’t have many photos at all with my dad and once they are gone you cant change it. While my uncle was having a clear out he came across some childhood photos which included a couple of me and my dad together dancing around the living room which I treasure so much. From my mums side I have boxes full of photos but with my dads I only have a few.Even now i’m not perfect at capturing my own family/life. I find that because i’m always taking photos of other people that when I do have some time off I don’t want to pick up the camera. I will need to work on that as I said I know its super important. Maybe we all just need to make more of a conscious effort with these things. Capture everyday moments even if you don’t have your makeup on or your hairs a bit of a mess, these can be the so beautiful. Anyway getting slightly off topic.
When I was about 14 I got my own first digital camera and would take daft fashion inspired photos in my bedroom with my friend. It was the most rubbish little compact camera but I loved it as I had saved up and bought with my own money. I used to take lots of photos of everything most being awful, but it was good fun. Below is a photo from my holiday in spain back in 2009 taken on said digital camera, this was actually one of the better shots haha.A more recent holiday photo, well 2015… taken in London with a better camera and a more skilled me haha.At going on 16 I really wanted to leave school, I did alright while their but definitely didn’t enjoy it. Looking back now those were the easy days haha lots of adults always say those are the easiest times of your life but its never believed until you leave and look back on it. So basically I knew I wanted to leave school but didn’t know what I wanted to do with myself and at only 15 you cant really blame me. I remember sitting in our lecture hall with a college brochure flicking through and noticed the photography course for West Lothian College and decided to apply because of the reasons above. I went for my interview as nervous as anything, I used to be very shy around new people which I guess this work has really helped with as I meet so many new people on a daily basis and happily chat away while we do their sessions. I got into college even with my little mouse voice interview haha I studied for the next 3 years which was great and a place that I met my best friends. After college I took a year just doing my own thing and then Abbie Wilson Photography was created and I’ve been doing that ever since!
A long post today, So if you have managed to read all that thanks so much!