Claire Juliet Paton is an alternative wedding photographer who works with couples looking to capture all the emotions of their special day in a creative way.
Claire’s cinematic style of wedding and elopement photography is just perfect for couples looking for authentic, unobtrusive images that capture the connection between them as a couple in a relaxed, contemporary style. Over to Claire now to tell us much more about her work.
Tell us a little about yourself and your business
I’m a 1992 girl from Scotland; wife, dog-mummy & photographer behind the lens at Claire Juliet Paton Photography. Inspired by atmospheric fairytales and moody period dramas, I’m always on the hunt for rugged natural landscapes, pretty light and of course happy, adventurous couples who don’t mind getting a little bit muddy!
What motivated you to start your business?
I used to work alone for 9 hours a day in an office room that had only one window. It looked out onto a carpark and back alley, and was surrounded by such high buildings on all sides that you could hardy see the sky. It was a pretty grim, colourless world to work in!
So when I was offered the opportunity to second shoot for a very talented family friend, who just happened to be a wedding photographer, I jumped at the chance and never looked back.
Tell us a little more about the day to day activities of your business
Editing, editing, all is editing! If I’m not out shooting weddings, I’ll be working on client collections or answering emails at my little desk under the stairs. The three essentials that get me through my day are coffee, my diary, and a good true crime podcast to fill the silence of working from home.
I have a dog who keeps me on track with my lunchtime ‘walk breaks’, and she let’s me know when the Postman is at the door. We make a great team actually – if she had opposable thumbs, I’d employ her as my second shooter.
If our readers were to order from you, what can they expect?
Happy-go-lucky energy, and a genuine interest in getting to know my clients. My work is all about capturing the real, intimate and unique connection between two people in love, if I want couples to open up to me and let me into their world, I have to make them feel at ease.
So there’s a lot of shooting the breeze before any actual shooting, which is one of my favourite aspects of the job.
How can couples judge if a company is the right fit for their wedding?
Choose suppliers that reflect and embrace your vibe as a couple, and who take a personal interest in your day. Trust and transparency are key – meet for a coffee or chat via Skype to get to know each other better, and never be frightened to ask too many questions.
What are your favourite moments from previous weddings you’ve been involved with?
I’ve been so blessed to witness some pretty amazing moments over the last few years, but if I had to pick one, it would be the day I travelled by boat to Loch Coruisk on the Isle of Skye with a couple who were eloping from the US. The ocean was perfectly calm and there wasn’t a breath of wind during the whole ceremony – it was an eerily beautiful and emotional day.
The bigger picture – does your business offer goods/services outside of the wedding world? Tell us more
I work predominantly with couples; elopements, weddings, connection shoots, that’s my comfort zone. But occasionally, I photograph newborns and families. It’s a different human experience, so requires a slightly different approach, but it’s still all about capturing precious and invaluable relationships between people. When a friend asks me to photograph their brand new baby, it’s a massive honour.
What have you got planned for the next 12 months?
At the top of my list of business goals last year was to travel more, and I’m thrilled to be doing that in the months ahead. I’ll be working in England, France and Malta, as well as heading back to my favourite Scottish isles, Skye and Harris. I also plan to get fit, but that’s been on the list for a long time now and I’ve yet to get round to it…
And finally, what or who inspires you and why?
I think one of the most important ways to stay fresh and motivated in a creative medium is to learn from others. Workshops and networking events are great for getting inspired, and I’m constantly blown away and challenged by the massive talent out there. If you admire the work of others, it will push you to better your own.
All images courtesy of Claire Juliet Paton