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  • Charlotte Chapple

Voci Choir – My First Commission

Updated: Aug 25, 2019

Mum has singing lessons from a local singing coach called Deborah who not only gives singing lessons but runs a couple of choirs and directs the York Waits, a group of musicians specializing in Medieval Music.

One evening Mum returned home from a lesson and said that Deborah had asked if I would take some promotional photographs of the Voci Choir that she leads and mentioned that she was willing to pay. My immediate reaction was “Woah! This is new”. I have never been asked to do anything like this before and had mixed feelings of excitement and nerves.

After just under a week of talking back and forth through mum, Deborah sent me a friend request on Facebook and sent me a message with the specifications of what she was looking for. She also mentioned her intentions for the photos saying they would be used for promotion both on social media, for possible concert promoters and a future website.

At first I was completely shocked that someone was willing to pay me for my work and was more than a little apprehensive. However after a couple of days thinking it through I decided to do the commission and started to really look forward to it. After a couple of days communicating back and forth with Deborah, the day of the shoot arrived. Walking up the Church the shoot was held in was one of the most nervous walks of my life so far. Luckily for me, the Choir and Deborah were extremely welcoming, if not a little nervous themselves and after talking with them about my first year at university and more general chitchat, I was able not only to calm myself down but also put the choir at ease and act natural in front of the camera.

The specifications for the shoot were to get some photos of the singers in action and when they are chatting together. Individuals, twos and threes, maybe more. The main aim was to capture the atmosphere and friendly, joyful spirit of the choir. Having the singers at such ease around me certainly made this job easier as the singers didn’t hide away from the camera, allowing me to get some very expressive single portrait images as well as group shots of everyone laughing and having a good time.

Once the shoot had finished, I thanked everyone and returned home to upload the photos onto my computer. The following day I began sorting through the images, deleting any blurred or badly composed ones and saved the rest onto a USB which I passed onto mum to give to Deborah during her next singing lesson.

A couple of days after mum returned the USB to Deborah, I received message from her saying “Hi. Just to say that I have finally had the chance to have a good look at the photos and there are some really lovely shots in there. I think you have certainly captured the spirit of the choir and the lovely atmosphere. We'll be using plenty xxx” And I cant lie, the overwhelming feeling of happiness and joy that filled me was beyond all words. I was so chuffed that not only was I satisfied with my work, but that Deborah was extremely happy with the images too and was very grateful for the work. Below is a selection of images from the shoot.

This is the beginning for a new venture for me, just watch this space.

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