andylloyd.photography-11

Featured Photographer – Andy Lloyd

Tell us a little about yourself and your work.

I’m a 35 year old professional photographer based in Bristol in the UK. I studied Documentary Photography at University and after a brief stint at my local newspaper; I spent eight years covering news and sport for the British national newspapers at Wales News Service – Wales’ premier news and photo agency. I decided to go freelance back in 2011 and concentrate on mountain bike photography, which had been on the back burner whilst working as a full time press photographer. I now spend a large proportion of my time out in the great outdoors shooting features for mountain bike magazines.

andylloyd.photography-1

What made you switch from covering news and sports for the national newspapers to freelance photography with an emphasis on mountain biking?

I have been riding mountain bikes for over 20 years now and always took photos of it in my spare time. I wanted to go freelance and concentrate on a subject I really enjoyed. The mountain biking allows me to combine a number of things I love to do – riding bikes, taking photographs and traveling. I still keep my hand in with the press work, and am always ready to go at the drop of a hat if a newspaper calls or a good story comes up – so long as I’m not on my bike or a pair of skis!

andylloyd.photography-2

What is the most challenging shoot you have been on?

A lot of the shoots I go on now are pretty challenging – not least because I have to ride my bike over the same terrain as the riders I am photographing whilst carrying all my gear on my back! No one shoot sticks out in my mind but I can quite often be found clambering up trees or scrabbling near very high cliffs in order to get the angle I want. The weather in these sometimes remote environments plays a massive part and more often than not has to be put up with.

andylloyd.photography-3 andylloyd.photography-12

Where is your favourite place to shoot?

I’d have to say the Alps are my favourite place to shoot. Not only are they stunning and awe-inspiring, but there is infinity variety of terrain and backgrounds everywhere you go. I have shot in many more exotic locations but the Alps are somewhere I go back to numerous times a year. This might just be down to their proximity to the UK but they are hard to beat for views.

andylloyd.photography-4 andylloyd.photography-10

Where do you see yourself as a photographer in 10 years?

I’d like to think that I will be doing similar shoots to the ones I do at present (hopefully more frequently!). I’d like to travel further afield and shoot in places people haven’t ridden before. I still feel I have a great deal to learn as a photographer and I definitely need to improve both technically and creatively as in my opinion I have started to become quite ‘workmanlike’ in my approach of late!

andylloyd.photography-5

If you were not a photographer what would you be doing for work?

That’s a tough one as that’s pretty much all I have done since leaving school in 1997 and I have no training in anything else! To be honest I’d be happy so long as I was working outside in the countryside and not tied to a desk in an office. That or I’d be a full time bike/ski bum doing odd jobs just to be able to ride!

andylloyd.photography-6

What advice can you give an aspiring photographer?

Shoot things that take you out of your comfort zone – at university my tutors would not allow me to shoot mountain biking. Be prepared to have to work for free, but at the same time never undervalue your own work, a difficult balance I know – there are a lot of amazing photographers out there giving their work away.

andylloyd.photography-7

Why and when did you become a photographer?

I started taking photographs seriously after failing my A-Levels at secondary school and really not knowing in which direction to go in. Up until then I had not even thought of photography as a career and only started as it seemed like something I would be interested in as opposed to traditional academic subjects at college.

andylloyd.photography-8

Why did you choose CMD for your websites?

The templates are simple to use and look great. As a photographer I need a website that is all about the images and CMD allows it to be just that. Being not particularly technically gifted with computers I love how easy it is upload content and customise.

andylloyd.photography-9

You can view Andrews website here andylloyd.photography. He also shots Skiing. You can view that site here alpictures.co.uk

September 3, 2014