Member spotlight: Katie Dix talks about the shot that got her into photography, plus more...

Photocrowd winner Katie Dix talks about the shot that got her into photography and how trial and error are the best way forward.

Katie won the Crowd Vote in Photocrowd's Natural Progression assignment with her beautifully lit shot of a mushroom (above).

Here we ask Katie some questions as part of our regular blog feature, where we interview Photocrowd members.

How did you get into photography?

I’ve always enjoyed being creative as a teenager and exploring the outdoors but it wasn’t until I studied GSCE Art that I grew to love capturing those moments and ideas on camera.

My dad lent me his Sony Compact one weekend for my art project, I took one close-up shot of a dog's paw print in the ripples of the sand and I was hooked! Before that moment I had only ever used my phone or a disposable camera.

How often and when do you take photographs?

I pretty much eat, breath and sleep photography, so whenever I can, usually at the weekend when I’m walking the dog. I love to explore, whether it be new places further-a-field or close to home in Norfolk, so combining the two is how I spend most of my weekends.

© Katie Dix

What is your technical setup?

I currently shoot with a Canon 6D, and before that I used the 350D and 550D. I own a small variety of lenses and my favourite setup last year was the 6D with Sigma 50mm f2.8 macro lens – it’s what I used to capture the mushroom shot! I do own Photoshop but I try to avoid it when I can - I like to keep my shots as natural as possible – it’s much easier and more satisfying to get it right in-camera first!

How do you educate yourself to take better pictures?

Well, I’m quite lucky because I’m surrounded by people on a daily basis who know all there is to know about photography. But I tend to learn best through trial and error.

© Katie Dix

© Katie Dix

Whose work has influenced you most?

There are a lot of photographers who have inspired me. Andy Rouse is one of them - he’s an incredible photographer who’s really passionate about wildlife and conservation. I’d love to go on one of his safari trips one day. I also recently came across an article about a Russian photographer called Elena Shumilova (whose work, I think, Photocrowd posted on its Facebook), her photos are absolutely breathtaking!

© Katie Dix

Among your works, which one is your favourite? Why?

I don’t actually have a favourite, but I do rather like my winning mushroom shot - it was a lucky little capture.

What do you get out of being a photographer?

Capturing a moment gives me a real buzz – whether it’s the smile of someone you love (sorry for the cheese!) or nature at its best - it’s so fulfilling being able to capture it. I also enjoy the creative challenge, learning new techniques and to get acknowledgement from other people who have the same passion as me. If I inspire people with my shots on the way, then it’s a bonus!

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