Just six years ago Shane Miller was restoring vintage cars. Now,
as a full-time professional wedding and portrait photographer, he has done the
almost impossible by beating all other Master Photographers in the UK to the
title of 'Master Photographer of the Year'.
Shane couldn't believe his ears when the announcement was made recently at
the MPA's AGM and Awards ceremony in Coventry: "It was a massive shock.
Even now it's hard to believe," he said.
The winning image is a blue-toned shot of a groom kissing the bride's neck
and is typical of the contemporary approach Shane has to his work. "I started
out shooting 'classical' images, but soon realised that brides wanted something
different," he commented.
Much of Shane's inspiration has come from just one photographer, Gordon McGowan,
when Shane saw him lecturing at Photography Training Overseas (PTO) two years
ago. "Gordon has had a big influence on the way I work and my attitude
to wedding photography," admits Shane.
Although he still shoots weddings on conventional film (Fujifilm NPH for colour
and Fujifilm Neopan for black and white), Shane has moved over to digital for
his portraiture, using a Fuji S2 Pro system. "Without doubt it has massively
changed the portrait side of the business," he explained. "However,
you still need to create great images no matter what sort of camera you use."
Shane's weddings are shot hand-held on a Nikon 35mm camera - and he rarely
uses flash; a technique that would have been frowned upon by many professionals
just a few years ago. He stopped using medium format two years ago, though he
has no plans to shoot weddings digitally just yet.
In addition to the overall win, Shane picked up a free trip to next year's
PTO in Tunisia and scooped the Denis Hylander wedding award in the same competition.
As for the future, Shane says he intends to "create fantastic images".