Quintin Lake is an architectural and fine art photographer based in Oxford with strong ties to London. Originally trained as an architect, his interest in place, form, and graphic structure largely influences his style of photography today. His clients represent a wide range of architects, building owners, interior designers, contractors, developers, engineers, publishers and magazines. Recently, Quintin was awarded with the Travel Photographer of the Year and the Outdoor Photographer of the Year for his work in travel photography.
Before launching his photography business, Quintin trained as an architect for seven years, graduating from the world renowned Architectural Association in London. Through that experience, he used photography as an important tool to record his design ideas. "Early on in my career as an architect I realized that I was more interested in (and better at) documenting the world than intervening in it," Quintin says. "I also had a mentor at the Architectural Association who encouraged and inspired me to take fine art photography seriously."
With a love for new and exotic places, Quintin started to take his camera, usually a Canon5DII, along with him on his travels. "I started shooting travel seriously and getting published when I joined a number of expeditions at the Royal Geographical Society, including hunting for new species of Orchids with botanists Peru, recording fragile rock art with archaeologists in Lesotho, and summiting unclimbed mountains in Greenland."
Quintin also set out on personal assignments, including walking between the furthest points of Britain over three months, documenting the radioactive town of Pripyat in Chernobyl, and recently traveling through Iran and Syria. Today, after winning major awards for his work, he receives more and more assignments abroad and sells a substantial number of prints and licenses via PhotoShelter.
Quintin was first drawn to PhotoShelter in 2007 because he needed a robust online backup for his best work. He also needed a solution to a fundamental major issue he was experiencing; he couldn't deliver large volumes of images to clients around the world. But once he signed up for PhotoShelter, that was an easy fix.
Today, Quintin continues to use PhotoShelter to run his business. "On a typical day, I'll upload all my commercial work to PhotoShelter and use the instant batch send option to deliver images quickly to my clients," he says. "I've also found that when clients Google themselves, they find my PhotoShelter site, which makes them (and me!) look really good." Quintin has uploaded over 9,000 images to his PhotoShelter archive, which will help fulfill his goal to ultimately create his own architectural and travel stock library set up for print and license sales.
To bring in revenue, Quintin takes on high-end architectural and interior assignments, many of which are for architects, engineers, contractors, building owners, and architecture publications. "My secondary revenue stream - which I see as equally important - is licensing travel photographs and selling fine art prints," he says. "I completely agree with photographer Duane Michals who once said that commercial work keeps you free to pursue what you like as an artist. For me, although I enjoy my commercial assignments, the fine art side of travel photography is truly my passion."
To market both his architectural and travel photography, Quintin believes that one of the most powerful and effective things he can do is to consistently deliver excellent work and meet with his clients in person. "After I've established a very strong relationship, I may ask for a referral but this often happens organically," he says.
Quintin also relies on social media, blogging, and email marketing to spread the word. "I like to repurpose content onto Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Google+ to update people with what I'm working on," he says. "For me, blogging and cross promoting through social media has been crucial to generating traffic and has even led to a number of image sales. Email marketing through a service like MailChimp is also extremely important for photographers because it reminds clients that we're still around. I've been lucky enough to have had a number of four figure sales as a result of these efforts. And although I'm not really one for monitoring stats, I can tell that the frequency is becoming more regular."
Quintin is also excited because he recently published his first book Drawing Parallels: Architecture Observed, where he draws from his experience traveling across over 60 countries. Says one reviewer, "Drawing Parallels encourages us to look at architecture in a new way. Rather than offering conventional views of canonical buildings, Quintin Lake's photographs explore architecture as the physical world around us, from man-made structures to natural forms."
So what's next for this on-the-go guy? In short, a lot. "I'm planning a trip to Astana, the architecturally bizarre capital of Kazakhstan," he says. "A little further ahead I'm planning a five thousand mile hike around the coast of Britain which will take 12 months, so the subject of my next body of work will probably be the sea!" Long term, Quintin has a goal to travel to every country in the world by 2025. "I've travelled to 65 countries so far, so I'm a third of the way there!"
Architectural & Fine Art Photographer
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