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DANIEL WILDEY

Go Venture Featured Photographer

Daniel Wildey loves to inspire people and his work certainly manages that with ease. We have a selection of his work to show off and a little insight into what it takes to achieve these types of shots.

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Please tell us a little bit about yourself…

I’m from Yorkshire but I’ve been living and working in the Alps and Dolomites for 3 years with various holiday companies, and have been an adventure lover for much longer!!

Why did you become a photographer?

Being in the mountains is a very visual experience, and for a long time I have found imagery to be a huge source of inspiration – so often I look at magazine articles and say “I want to be there!!”  Being lucky enough to live in the mountains I find myself wanting to be the person that provides that inspiration to others.  I think this approach has shown in my commercial work for outdoor clothing companies and for holiday companies – inspiring people is essential.

What kind of equipment do you use and what did you start with?

I started with a Sony A200 simply because it was a very good value package.  Sony are very aggressively taking on the DSLR market so are packing higher spec features into lower priced models.  I’ve recently invested in the brand new A77 which so far is fantastic, particularly for fast sports like skiing.

I use a Sigma 10-20mm lens for hotel and chalet shots, and usually a Sigma 18-200mm when on the mountain aswell – it is amazingly versatile!  I’m also a massive fan of “Strobist” techniques, so naturally a few speedlites and bags full of accessories are always with me!

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What are the most challenging things when taking adventure photos?

As I write this I’m on a 14 hour train journey from Italy to the French Alps to shoot for a ski company.  Today is pretty challenging!!!

Generally the biggest challenge is myself; you can’t be a photographer part-time, the camera must always be with you, you must always be ready and willing to take advantage of the light, or the circumstances and make the effort to get the shot, otherwise you end up kicking yourself.  99% of the time this is no problem, but the other 1% is the challenge.

How do you make a living? Do you sell a lot of work?

I currently work full time in the Dolomites for Collett’s Mountain Holidays, but I’m at the stage where photography is demanding more of my time.  I sell prints through my website (see below) and my book ‘Aspects of the Dolomites’ has sold very well (through blurb.com) but it is commercial work that is prompting a move to full-time photography.  I have a lot of experience in outdoor gear (clothing, equipment) and in the tourism/hospitality business, so I am getting more and more work in those areas

Do you have a favourite photograph?

I have a new favourite every other day!!  Currently, the front cover of Summit magazine (published by the BMC), an ice climbing shot by Christian Pondella.

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Best piece of advice you have been given?

Not specific to photography, but LISTEN to what your client wants. Simple advice but rarely followed.

What advice would you give a photographer getting started?

Anyone can make an effort to take good shots but taking photos when you really don’t want to is what makes the difference.  Forcing yourself out of bed at 3am, or forcing yourself to get the camera out of the bag when you’re so cold you can’t feel your hands – this is how you make your own luck.

Did you attend photography school/classes or are you self-taught?

It seems wrong to say self-taught because I owe it all to the internet!!  There are so many resources online (and free) that I couldn’t even name them all, but some of the most helpful sites have been Strobist and the UKClimbing site/forums.

Additional Information & Links

Check out more of Daniel’s work by visiting:

Daniel Wildey – www.danielwildeyphotography.com

His book ‘Aspects of the Dolomites is also available at www.blurb.com

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