Born in 1980, I was raised in Sedgefield, County Durham. After sixth-form I had just won ‘The North East Young Engineer Of The Year Award 1999’ and was all set to go on and study Design Technology, when during my BTEC Foundation course in Art and Design at Cleveland College of Art and Design, Hartlepool, I did a photography module. That was it: I was hooked! After completing this course I went on to study photography at degree level and received a Bachelor of Arts with Honours.

Upon finishing University I had one goal, which was to set up my own photography business. In order to do this I needed capital so I started work as a postman for Royal Mail. My plan was do this job for a couple of months, get some money together then jump in at the deep end and become self-employed. But I ended up enjoying the job so that couple of months turned into several years.

In 2008 I set up CJW Fine Art Images and have never looked back (mostly because I never have the time). My business covers many aspects of photography but in particular specialises in fine art landscape photography and wedding photography.

I find myself drawn to the outdoors, especially towards the sea. The rich landscape and coastal areas of the North East are a constant source of inspiration for me. I often visit the same place on several occasions, at different times of the day or night and even different seasons of the year until I find the right type of light that enhances the image. I get a great sense of inner peace from walking around the countryside with just myself and the camera and I try to convey this in my images. When taking a picture I try to analyse a scene to determine what it is I am trying to capture, whether it be the colours of a sunset or the movement of the sea. Once I have decided what it is that first caught my eye then this helps me determine the exposure I use. A lot of my work is about the passage of time and I think this is one of the reasons why the sea is so often on my mind; the constantly changing tides give me something unique and exciting every time I visit the coast.

Capturing the flow of events during a wedding seems like a world away from landscape photography, yet the two are more closely linked than might at first be expected. Instead of the passage of time, I aim to capture the emotions of the day. I look at the available lighting and see how that falls upon the wedding party and I move accordingly to compose my shot so that it does the subject justice. As opposed to the peace I get out of doing landscape photography I get a huge buzz out of doing weddings. Putting together the finishing touches to a wedding album and hearing the exclamations of delight from the Bride and Groom when they first see the final images, fills me with a sense of accomplishment second to none.