The draw of the sea
Despite her successes as a lawyer Rachael Talibart wanted to fulfill her creative potential, deciding to switch working in the city for photographing the south coast. In the first of our 2017 Short Exposure series, she answers quick fire questions and shares her evocative imagery…
Outdoor Photography: Hello! First of all please introduce yourself: tell us the type of pictures you like to take and how you first got into photography.
Rachael Talibart: Hi! I’m a full-time photographer specialising in coastal subjects. I’ve been a keen photographer all my adult life but I’ve only recently started to make a business out of it; my first career was as a city lawyer! I love being outdoors and creating images – I feel very lucky I can now indulge in that and call it ‘work’.
Image above: Drift © Rachael Talibart
OP: How often are you able to get out there and photograph, and is there a particular location you normally go to?
RT: I go out at least once a week and, hopefully, more often. My go-to place is the south coast because that’s where I grew up. I know it very well and I think that helps me make better images. But I also love to travel, already this year I’ve been to Iceland and Scotland.
OP: What are you working on at the moment?
RT: All sorts of projects – too many to list! One of them is a portfolio with the working title, Shoreline. I’m using long exposures with close-up compositions of where the sea meets the shore. So far the images are quite abstract – I’m enjoying experimenting.
Basalt © Rachael Talibart
OP: Where do you find your inspiration?
RT: Just being by the coast is probably my biggest inspiration. Even if I come away from a day photographing there without a single image that’s a keeper (which is now a frequent occurrence as I’m quite fussy these days), it’s never wasted. I always feel rejuvenated and new ideas may be forming in the back of my mind that only emerge as something tangible months later.
OP: What’s your dream photography project?
RT: I’d like to go to Iceland and spend at least four months there to really get to know the place (you did say ‘dream’ project). Like many photographers, I absolutely love it there but it’s hard in quick trips that are 1-2 weeks long at a time to settle in properly, slow down and understand the place.
OP: Is there one thing in particular you think would improve your photography?
RT: More time. There simply aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything I want to do. Also, I like to take things slowly and when I don’t have time pressures I’ll spend long periods of time just watching, without shooting. I can be quick if I have to but I don’t enjoy it as much.
Godafoss © Rachael Talibart
OP: What do you think is hot right now in the photography world?
RT: I’ve noticed a renewed interest in enjoying photographs as part of a set or series, rather than the stand-alone images previously privileged by social media and photo-sharing sites. I hope that continues. Also, people seem to be getting into printing more. I’ve outsourced my printing until recently but I’ve just invested in a sleek new machine myself – there’s a steep learning curve ahead!
OP: Where do you see your photography in five years time?
RT: I probably ought to have more of a long-term business plan but, actually, I’m just going to see what happens. I’m at an age where some of my contemporaries from my city days are thinking about starting to plan their retirement, yet I feel as if I’m just starting out. It’s wonderfully exciting and I’m going to keep throwing myself into it with all I’ve got.
See more of Rachael Talibart's work here.
Hear more of her thoughts and photography experiences in the latest Togcast episode
Rachael Talibart will be writing the main technique in OP217, Outdoor Photography’s May issue (on sale 6 April) where she’ll explore how to photograph the sublime.