Jemella Binns and Denise Maxwell from the UK Black Female Photographers Group will share from their individual careers and artistic practices and on the importance of building networks of solidarity within an industry that is often exclusionary. They will map out what led them to where they are now as established photographers, including taking a photography degree as well as an untraditional route and changing career paths in your 30s. They’ll also be focusing on tips for overcoming pitfalls, building networks and a client base when establishing a photography career.
Jemella has been a photographer for 11 years and running her full time photography business since graduating with a first class photography degree in 2013. She found out in her education journey that she was dyslexic, which resulted in her pursing photography rather than being a social worker as she discovered the best techniques of how she was able to work and retain information.
In 2013 she started her photography business, Mellz Photography LTD, which focuses on capturing her Clients Milestones, Maternity, Newborn, Babies, Cake smashes and weddings. Jemella has made it her purpose to make sure that all of her clients exist in physical print to last for generations. Why? Because we live in a digital world, where we store everything on our phones or post them on our socials but what happens to those images when those things are no longer around, how will our great, great, great-grandchildren know what we look like?
Jemella is also the founder of The UK Black Female Photographers Community (UKBFTOG) which is a group dedicated to black female photographers to help them have a safe space to connect, learn photography tips and grow as a photographer in an industry dominated by men.
Denise has been a full-time photographer for nearly 11 years. After leaving a successful career in the NHS to pursue photography. She started in event and portrait photography. Years later her portfolio has expanded to cover many genres including sports , fashion (London Fashion Week), weddings, red carpet, portraits, music, products and events.
To date this varied successful career has led Denise to have photographed some of the most well known people and events in the world including people such as Barak Obama, Usain Bolt, Tom Hanks and Oprah Winfrey. She has covered events such as London Fashion Week, The Brits and the BAFTA’s and has a client list that includes The BBC, Gumtree, Uber and Armani. Her work has been published in Vogue, The Independent and The Guardian to name a few publications. She has also been featured on BBC TV. Denise also teaches her own workshops / lessons and also visit lectures at Sandwell College and The University of Birmingham.
Spaces on sessions are limited, in order to maintain an informal atmosphere and allow for discussion.
This talk is hosted as part of our Blast! Creative Network programme. Taking place online once a month the BCN programme offers talks, workshops, opportunities and social events to bring emergent artists based in Sandwell or the Black Country a yearlong events programme that provides a space for knowledge sharing and support. You can apply to join the network and learn about upcoming sessions here.
Please message firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to attend, with a few lines about your practice / interests, why you’d like to join the network, and where you are currently based (with your postcode).