Hello, welcome to Elizabeth Keates Photography and thank you for pausing your day to have a look at what I do – I am a storyteller.
If you are anything like me you’ll probably have fond childhood memories of bedtime stories and of that particular person who was the best at telling them. Mine was Granddad. He always put so much effort in, animating characters and giving them funny voices, and he always had a magical glint in his eye, which meant he was enjoying his performance just as much as me. It takes a lifetime of experiences to get that good!
That passion for telling stories obviously rubbed off and as soon as I was able to, I ran away to Drama School. A quite phenomenal decade of stage and film roles followed, during which I realised how vital the relationship between an actor and a director is in order to create a truly believable character. They give you that ability to express yourself confidently and freely without fear of inadequacy. “The camera captures your very soul” they’d say, “so let it”.
Sounds simple enough, but it is that kind of special relationship that I aim to build with all of my photographic clients today, long before I begin shooting them – photographically you understand, not ballistically!
It seemed a very natural progression to take the valuable lessons I had learned in front of the camera, behind it, and turn a lifelong hobby into what is now my living. The swansong to my acting career was in the Olivier Award winning West End production of the Railway Children in 2012 and since then I have sought the tutelage of some of the best ‘people’ photographers on the planet. They have honed my camera skills and techniques quiet specifically and I count myself very fortunate indeed to now have a job that gives me so much pleasure.
Through informal meetings beforehand and often a pre-shoot at the location, I aim to build up a close working relationship with clients prior to ‘their big day’ so they feel a confidence and naturalism when I begin clicking away. And it works! However self-conscious you may feel you are, or that ‘you don’t take a good photo’, don’t worry. Let me alleviate those fears and let me tell the story of your important occasion in a series of beautiful pictures that you will have to reflect back on for the rest of your life. It’s what sets me apart from other photographers and it’s why those clients chose to come back time and time again for me to tell the next chapter of their family’s story.