We have been fortunate enough to speak with the highly sought after Sharon Latham for our ‘In The Hive’ edit. Sharon is a renowned photographer and the CEO and co-founder of app – The Selfie Guide. The app encourages a new way of discovering places, capturing the best images and putting an end to selfie fails. This was a really fun and exciting project to work on and Beeta were honoured to assist. Sharon also recently held a hugely successful photography exhibition, Noel Gallagher and The High Flying Birds, showcasing exclusive images from the band’s tours around the globe.
What made you go into photography?
My dad was a keen landscape photographer and at weekends we would nip out, just me and him, and go drive to beautiful rural locations to take photos. I’d sit and watch him in his darkroom developing the images and I thought it was magic, I loved it! Unfortunately, he died when I was 8 and I was obviously heartbroken, I inherited his 35mm camera and that was it. I simply haven’t really ever had a time in my life when I’ve not taken pictures, from the age of 8 it’s been a part of me. I would get film or development vouchers for birthdays and Christmas to make sure that I could continue my hobby. It’s a massive part of who I am and my identity, I’m very very lucky that it’s my career as it doesn’t feel like a job.
What’s next for The Selfie Guide?
The app is due to expand its locations to give the user more choice of destinations to choose from; plus, we will be offering a monetisation scheme to enable us to improve the technology side of the app. The monetisation will be in the form of sponsorship from larger organisations and advertising within the app but in a beneficial way for the user. The user is always key in our mind, their experience and how the app works will always be our priority.
When looking for a tech partner, what made Beeta stand out to you?
I was blown away by Beeta’s experience in the app market and how they work so closely and on a bespoke basis with each individual client. I find their staff incredibly easy to work with and they always talked through and listened to every part of what I wanted; I felt my app was a part of their business and not just another project they are working on.
Technology has impacted photography significantly over the years, what features would you like to see made available in the future?
Camera Tech changes on a month by month basis, it’s incredible just how quick a camera or a piece of equipment goes out of date. I’m happy with how the mirrorless camera market is now improving so much, this allows professional photographers like me to work with cameras far superior to some of the heavier and more clunky old-school style equipment. My camera bag now weighs a lot less than in the past – and trust me when you have to lug around a large amount of kit your back is not happy! I also love the advances in mobile cameras, giving everyone the opportunity to have a professional style lens in their pocket. I love snapping images on the fly with my phone.
Did you always see yourself photographing celebrities like Noel and Elton?
Never in a million years did I ever think I would be working with some of the people I’ve worked and work with. If you had said this to my younger self I would have laughed. I never take for granted the work I do, I absolutely pinch myself on a regular basis at how lucky I am to have some of the clients I do. I’m happy still being able to pick up my camera and shoot images, the celebs are an added bonus to an already amazing job.
For aspiring photographers, what’s one piece of advice you would give?
I always say the same thing, TAKE PICTURES. Every day go out and about and take photos, be that with your camera or even with your mobile. Practicing the craft is vital, making sure you work out what type of photography you like is important if you want to make a career out of it. I love doing the sort of photography I do, which is mainly people-related but others may prefer landscape or architect photography or medical or fashion. Without practicing and working out how to do the basics you will never know. So snap away, take pics and enjoy what you do. Learn as much about what your camera does and how it does it so it becomes a part of you.
You’ve recently had your work showcased in the Noel Gallagher and the High Flying Birds exhibition, do you have plans for more gallery events in the future?
I do have a couple of other exhibition ideas, not just with Noel Gallagher but with some of my other clients. Although, after the success of the High Flying Birds exhibition I do think I may do another one with Noel in a few years. Hopefully I will still be working with him, who knows.
“Down the years I’ve been lucky enough to work with some of the best photographers in the world and I would put Sharon right up there. At its best a photograph should speak. What are the pictures saying? They are saying: We – NGHFB – have the best job in the world. To work, play, travel and party with these people is an absolute pleasure. I’m so happy that Big Shaz was there to capture these moments.”– Noel Gallagher