Some of our photography students had the opportunity to get some real-world experience covering Glasgow’s biggest Christmas Craft Market of 2016.
Etsy Made Local is an annual market where makers from all over Scotland gather to sell their handmade items which are normally sold online at etsy.com. It was held again this year in The Briggait in Glasgow and featured over 120 sellers across 2 days.
Our students were involved in two parts of covering the event. Firstly, they attended the Press and Blogger launch 3 days before the fair to provide a pop-up photobooth and also some candid coverage of the event. This presented several opportunities to put into practice all of the theory that they have learned and discover some of the things that just simply cannot be taught and rely on experience to learn.
The venue was the newly re-opened Savings Bank on Bridge Street in Glasgow. It truly is a stunning venue with a huge domed ceiling, chandelier lighting, tiled walls and luxurious wood panelling.
Cocktails were served to guests in a biscuit theme (Tunnocks-tini anyone?) to honour the popular “Biscuit Queen” Nikki McWilliams, one of Glasgow Etsy Team‘s most popular members, whose biscuit designed cushions were also used as photobooth props.
The first challenge the students had was working in a restricted space. In most cases you will perform a venue visit before covering an event to look at space, lighting, access and to highlight any issues but in this case it wasn’t possible. Therefore, the students had to think on their feet as soon as they arrived. The venue had lots of power outlets to connect the lights to with one exception… where we wanted to setup the photobooth. On to plan B and we got to work setting up the lights and backdrop in a different location, closer to the entrance. This had the bonus of being able to catch people as they arrived at the event to get their photograph taken straightaway but meant that the space was much reduced and the students had to be aware of their surroundings at all times. All of their health and safety knowledge was put into practice as they ensured that the lights were setup safely and out of the way to avoid any trip hazards. The quirky biscuit props, “Etsy” background, professional lighting and the students unwavering enthusiasm ensured that everyone had fun in the photobooth resulting in a set of fun images showing everyone’s personalities.
The second challenge for the students was lighting within the rest of the venue. The photobooth was fine – a professional lighting setup ensured well-lit, sharp, good quality professional images. However, the rest of the venue was lit using dimmed chandeliers and candles creating a great atmosphere but a bit of a photographer’s nightmare due to the low light conditions. This was quickly overcome by the students using portable flash guns or adjusting their camera settings to use a high ISO. The candid coverage of the event included people networking around the event and also some shots of the various workshops that took place showcasing the wide and varied talent of the Glasgow Etsy Team members.
Come back soon for the next instalment of this series which will feature some of the images captured at the Etsy Made Local fair…