Finding The Light

SMasonPhoto_001-3.jpgYorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography

A couple of years ago, I took the photo above and I posted it on Instagram and Facebook. And then an intriguing comment appeared, "Ooh, that looks just like a Vermeer". At this point, please forgive my ignorance. What's a Vermeer, I thought. One quick Google later, I knew. I didn't think I'd heard his name before, but I had back in school days, I just hadn't retained it. What I did remember, in those dusty recesses of my mind, was looking at those beautiful paintings in over-sized books in the school library. 

It was the start of a new year, and I'd been itching to take photos a little differently. This moment was a turning point for me, I knew I loved this image, but couldn't quite put my finger on it. I loved the tones, the simplicity of it. I've always been drawn to the dark, but a dark that's shattered by a pop of light, whether from a window, a gap in the trees, or a sunny spot on a staircase. Especially with shoots in a family home, I naturally look for this type of light. It's the light that really makes me tick. Suzi always knows when I've found it as I'll take a sharp intake of breath! Looking at more Vermeer paintings online, I was so taken with the light, the contrasts and shadows and how he managed to capture the beauty in the everyday in such a striking way.

Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography

There are a few theories that Vermeer used a camera obscura that may have helped him to create depth and composition and intensify the contrast between light and shadows. To me he is the ultimate lightseeker. The way he used light went hand hand in hand with his style.

Since then, I've been seeking a more painterly quality in my photos and using light a little differently to how I was before that photo of a mother and her new baby. 

Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography
SarahMaYorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography
SarahMasonPhoto_020.jpgYorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography
SarahMasonPhotography_033.jpgYorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography
SarahMasonPhoto_002.jpgYorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography

We've been discussing how we use light on our retreats too, we love passing on what we've learnt. It always seems to be the subject that people get most excited about. If you'd like to join us on our next retreats, just let us know, or take a look at the retreats page on our website here.

And keep a look out for those gorgeous pools of light spilling through curtains in the morning, illuminating your favourite walk through the trees, or highlighting the stairs. There's magic in the everyday.

The Streets In The Sky

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Above the bustle of Halifax Borough Market are two hidden streets, The Streets in the Sky.

They run alongside the roof of the market and look out onto the streets of Halifax, and on the other, through tall panes of glass, you can look in onto the market stalls below. At the risk of sounding like a line from Dr Who, the houses are a lot bigger than you think on the inside. Each house holds its own particular story. Behind those sturdy front doors, we walked into spacious houses, three storeys high. Some still hold beautiful period features and the light streams through dusty sash windows.

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The houses were originally occupied by the market workers. They'd access their stall from their house. Two are still lived in.

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Stepping into the houses, there are remnants of life. 

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On the end is where the old Peacock Hotel was. There's still the dumbwaiter in place, if a little bit dusty, and there are faded signs of decadence.

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I'd heard so much about this place and it was the perfect way to end a day of working with the market. We're making a film about it, documenting the people that work there, the heart and soul of the market. It's really under my skin this one, and I'm looking forward to showing you when we've finished it.

This is me at the end of the shoot taken by our friend Chris.

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If you'd like to see what's going on at the market, you can keep up to date with news on the Facebook page here.

At Home With Freyja

Yorkshire Family Photographer Sarah Mason Photography

Sitting on the kitchen tiles warmed by the sun, I was taking photos of Freyja, next to the penguin doorstop, as the light streamed through the window. It's these fleeting moments that really stay with me.

I know I've said it before, (and I'm going to pre-empt now that I'm more than likely to say it again), I have been so drawn over the last few months to taking photos of children in the home they are growing up in. Freyja had crawled along the hallway, and after that journey, she rested against the kitchen door. We took these photos before she was walking, but we heard last week, she's now taking her first steps. So that journey will be a little quicker now!

Back in 2015, we took photos of Lou and Nick's (her parents) beautiful wedding. It feels such a privilege that we're invited back into lives we've documented, especially when there's a new family member!

Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Sarah Mason Photography
Yorkshire Portrait Photographer Sarah Mason Photography

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