Can you introduce yourself...
Hello! I’m Laura Meek. I live in Edinburgh, Scotland and work as a freelance Photographer. I have been working as a photographer for nearly twelve years now. I got interested in my Dad’s old film camera when I was about 10 or so and the rest is history. I was raised in America but spent much of my childhood in Scotland visiting my Mum’s family until I finally relocated to Edinburgh and started over on this side of the pond after studying photography in the States and getting my feet wet in the industry over there. Prior to my move, you could usually find me on the side of a stage photographing music gigs or on long road trips exploring parts of America with friends if I wasn’t on the job. These days, I really enjoy getting around Scotland, especially the Isle of Skye and Highlands to get inspired, or wandering about Edinburgh: spending time in the vintage shops and film houses or having picnics on Calton Hill with a good book/company, or down at my studio in Leith. Most of my work revolves around fashion, portraiture and creative lifestyle commercial work. My background and training is in Fine Art film photography, and living in Scotland proves time after time as an incredible subject and background for creating personal series when I’m not on the job. I have been involved with Miller Harris for about two years now, and it’s been such a delight creating visual fragrant stories with them
What do you try to convey in your work?
I want to invite others to experience the world through my eyes, in a way they may never have considered before. Whether that is how light and space is treated, or the emotion and gesture of a subject is directed/instinctively captured, etc. I want to give my audience my honest perception, not just a plain documentation. When I take photographs, I want an authentic feeling and connection to come through; whether it be personal work or commercial. Creating photographs is my main means of communication: and in my heart, I want to find the best parts of people and places, so through my work, I want to convey a belief that beauty can be found everywhere if you look for it.
What advice would you give someone starting out in photography?
Become prolific in your personal discoveries and your efforts in the craft. Spend time dedicating yourself to seeing rather than looking. Ever since beginning art school eleven years ago, and even further back beyond those years, I have kept a camera with me every day in case I see something in passing I want to document and connect with visually; I find it helps to maintain a consistent personal quality to not only the day-to-day, but eventually to commercial work. It’s foundational to develop your own unique vision. Give the world a perception that hasn’t been experienced or curated by anyone else. Become confident in what you are doing creatively and don’t be afraid to reach out and engage with others to strengthen your skills as well as broaden your social scope in the creative world. You never know who you may cross paths with by getting out there. Don’t be afraid to share your ideas. Also, don’t be afraid to fail every so often, that’s how we grow and develop our repertoire. Part of your job as a working photographer is selling ideas, so keep a sharp imagination and a go-getter mentality. Be determined and believe in what you are doing. Eventually, the right people will notice and your consistent outpouring will pay off over time. You really do have to spread your net wide and work hard in this industry to see results, but they are there for the taking if you are willing to stay committed to finding them. I would be very careful to not depend on others to lead the way in trends. Life is too short to copy others. Be brave creatively, and most importantly, be honest to yourself. The bottom line, however, is that you should pursue photography because it is a way to share with the world the way you experience life, and the rest will follow.
Where is the most unusual place you’ve found inspiration?
The Isle of Skye is probably the main source of my bank of inspiration. It’s such a bizarre otherworldly location. It has nothing to do with the industry and yet sits on this planet as a raw element packed with a special kind of energy that I believe is invaluable to my creative development within the industry. Removing myself from the city and placing myself in such a place has actually turned into an annual late-winter retreat. I always return home full of new ideas and a clear head for forward-thinking. Perhaps it’s also to do with the island air.