‘Into The Light Workshop’ part one ~ pictures and inspiration by Martin Hill

Jul 20, 2011 | Flash, Location | 13 comments

01. The big picture. "Shoot creative pictures with impact that reflect your personal image style. Inspire, educate and share your skills with our delegates" Said Damien. those were my words of direction for my friend and collegue Martin Hill. Judging by the feedback I've been getting he didn't disapoint. As one of the UK's emerging eminent talents Martin is set for great things in our industry. In this shot Martin photographed Sarah Beaufoy at f/22, 1/250th second on his Canon 1Ds Mk3. Lighting was from a pair of Broncolor Mobil heads on this grey, overcast day.

The delegates arrived early for this “Into The Light” workshop. The call time was 09.30 but by 08.45 the first eager photographers were getting the scale of our fabulous venue. You can’t fail to be amazed at the graceful setting of Kingscotte house near Tetbury. Tea and Coffee was served in the kitchen, complete with Aga and a log burner. Martin and I walked the grounds going over the plans we had made for the structure and psychology of the training we were about to give. This final prep is vital in order to deliver a first class experience to our deligates.

02. Martin made the most of the low cloud base on day one of this two day adventure. We repeated the workshop the day after to meet the demand this workshop had created.

Sarah and Iskra were in make up with the very tallented Vicky Waghorn by 08.30 and I spent some time sorting outfits and styling the morning session. Sarah had some amazing dresses in her car and she gladly lent Iskra one sensational Herve Leger dress. I then set about pre rigging a couple of lights in the bedrooms. Kingscotte house is vast. I decided to shoot in just four bedrooms and the upstairs landing. By cutting down on the locations it’s easier to concentrate on the images. It’s easy to be overwhelmed by a venue and to leave a shoot feeling that more opportunities could have been taken. I prefer to accept that I’ll shoot in different areas at my next visit. Martin whose shots we see here worked outside in the grounds all day.

03. Sensational. ISO 100, f/32 at 1/125th Such is the power of the Broncolor Mobil system.

04. The low angle viewpoint makes this shot work so well. Martin and I spend a lot of time on our knees and lying on the ground when shooting.


Martin encouraged the delegates without the flash trigger to shoot natural light images while they were waiting. It is important to slow down when shooting with big flash as each exposure represents a significat percentage of your flash battery power. Martin together with his 5 delegates all got the shots and a each delegate received a very significant amount of personal time from Martin himself.












The day was divided into four shooting sessions of aproximately an hour and a half each. Two groups of five delegates swaped tutor each quater. Martin and I then repeated each session once so that everyone got the chance to shot each setup. However, the light changes and the dynamics in the groups often lead to subtle changes in the shots. Martin and I teach with a reactive fluid system that covers a sylabus while making the most of the opportunities that present themselves. On day one the sun made a couple of brief apearances and we reacted to make best use of it while we could.

After lunch Martin switched from big flash to Speedlights triggered by the Pocket Wizard TTL system. He use Nikon and Canon Speedlights rigged in unison on a pair of Lovegrove Gemini brackets. For the next ‘Into The Light workshop’ Martin might be shooting with Elinchrom Ranger and Radio Popper trigered Speedlights. The kit used is far less important than the pictures made. The same images can be made using a variety of lighting systems once the fundamentals of light positioning and exposure are understood.

My part of this workshop was shot using continuous light and was more focussed on expression and intimacy in the portraits. My pictures will be blogged next.

17. Wow, Sarah has the presence of an angel, a figurehead on the flagship. This picture has a dynamic that resonates to the core. Fabulous! Martin used an 80mm focal length setting on his 70-200mm lens to capture this shot of Sarah.

18. The walled garden is a haven for shape and design led images.


20. I love this picture. Pure light and shade. Natural colours and repeating patterns.


These shots may seem in a random order and that is because Martin shot the same scenes four times in different light over the two workshop days.


23. Sarah is in her element crerating shapes and design. Marrtin is in his element creating light and capturing the moment.


In the afternoon Martin and his delegates just used Speedlights with the Lovegrove Gemini bracket and Pocket Wizards to produce punchy pictures one after another. Using the Gemini meant that Marting could rig the Nikon and Canon Speedlights right next to each other pointing in the same direction.


26.Fabulous on every level.



29. Luminosity, depth and the illusion of three dimensions in a two dimensional image,

30. This is my favourite image of the set. I wish I could put my name to this shot.

31. Wow!

A picture of model Sarah Beaufoy photographed by photographer Martin Hill

32. A few notes about our model... Sarah Beaufoy is a dependable professional that I have come to rely on in my training business. It is so important that I never take for granted the qualities that make up such an eloquent, elegant and beautiful girl. I feel truly priveliged to have Sarah on my team. This was Martin's first time photographing Sarah and he had nothing but respect and praise for her. "Well done Sarah, you are gorgeous, and you were superb as always" - Damien.

This is the work from one half of the workshop that is “Into The Light” with Martin Hill and Damien Lovegrove. My half will be posted next. Expect a few more pictures from me because shooting continuous light is far quicker than using big flash.

Details of the next ‘Into the Light’ workshop are here.

You can also browse our range of upcoming photography training courses here.

Please leave a comment on these pictures or the workshop in the space below.


Scene2bseen Photos (@Scene2bseenfoto)

@damienlovegrove @martinhillphoto Stunning images!

Thu Jul 21 08:23:25 2011

Mark Wilson (@MarkWilsonPhoto)

@damienlovegrove Fabulous post Damien – very inspiring images @martinhillphoto love low camera angles + movement with dress on 24 25 n 26!

Wed Jul 20 22:43:25 2011

Annie Armitage (@Anniegolightly)

@damienlovegrove @martinhillphoto wonderful!

Thu Jul 21 08:45:26 2011

Steve Dunster (@stevephotog)

@damienlovegrove @martinhillphoto really nice work

Thu Jul 21 08:41:46 2011

Martin Johnson (@martinjohnson17)

@damienlovegrove @alexbeadon @alexbeckett @rolandogomez @TipSquirrel @martinhillphoto some amazing pics here !!!!

Thu Jul 21 08:28:23 2011

Tim McCann (@magmaimages)

@damienlovegrove @martinhillphoto WOW those are something just more than a bit special. Beautiful work Martin.

Thu Jul 21 08:49:44 2011

Tom Cairns (@tomcairnsphoto)

@damienlovegrove @martinhillphoto and an amazing day it was….

Thu Jul 21 08:27:52 2011


  1. Sarah Beaufoy

    Dear Everyone,

    Thankyou all for your lovely comments and emails I have been receiving. I really enjoyed working with Martin, he is a brilliant and inspiring teacher and I am really looking forward to our next shoot together.

    The dress….. is one I commissioned when I took part in the Miss Universe competition and is a very special one off. The silk was dyed in Paris and each bead and crystal was painstakingly sewn on by hand in South Wales. I’ll bring it along to our shoot on 31st August but I’m also going to bring another one which is just as special ;)

    There will be lots of lovely, floaty silk pieces in my collections when my fashion label launches later this year!

    Thanks again,

  2. Iona Matheson-Long

    Wow Sarah really looks stunning as usual! I loved shooting her on the studio course. Being a right girlie now with the following comment but “I love the purple dress – I want one”!!! Where can I get one from – can you ask please?! :-) The colours with the landscape are fantastic and so too is the makeup and the whole look. Love the vibrancy x

  3. Martin Hill

    Hi everyone,
    thanks so much for so many great comments and hopefully I have inspired you to go out there and push the boundaries.
    Take care

  4. Chris Wray

    Thanks for a fab day Damien, I learnt loads and met some great photographers. Its an absolutely cracking venue and the light in there is to die for. I particularly liked the use of the Lupo, constant lighting really wasn’t something I’d considered before the course. Iskra was an absolute pleasure to work with and I’m chuffed with the results.

  5. Gordon Lindsay

    Damien & Martin,
    It was a brilliant day and I learnt loads and got some super pics. See you again soon.


    • damien

      Thanks Gordon, for your custom and your kind words. Damien

  6. Will Pateman

    Stunning work ..great reflections..loving the black and whites

  7. keith


    Martin – exceptional work ! So inspiring.

  8. david cooke

    Wow Martin those photos are awsome, brilliant lighting, and Sarah looks to be an amazing model what a combination.

  9. Chris Hanley

    well done Buddy, you’re on fire :) That opening image is one of the best shots I’ve seen in your portfolio. High 5’s x

  10. Robert Qi

    Wow, absolutely stunning images. Thank you for sharing!

  11. Greg Dykes

    I had such an amazing day and learnt more than I could have imagined. Thank you both.

  12. Martin Pemberton

    A stunning collection of images – looks like another course to book myself on but dont tell the wife!


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