Hobnobbing with Samantha James from Madeline Images

posted by 3 years ago in Interview

How did the idea for the business come about?

I’ve always liked playing around with photos of the kiddies on my phone and constantly filling my camera roll up with different images. But it was all just a hobby! I never thought about making a career out of it until one day my husband said “you have a good eye for photography, why don’t you try it?”. So, I went out and bought a second hand digital camera, jumped on youtube and it began from there…. practising using my own children was just ideal! The name of the business came from my Nan, she was called Madeline, and the most beautiful women I have ever known. It’s a generation name and I’d like to keep it going that little bit longer in memory of her.  It does tend to cause my clients confusion when they call and ask for Madeline, but we’ll soon get there.

When was the company first established? 

I established Madeline Images in the summer of 2016 when I was on maternity leave with my daughter ‘Harriet Madeline’. I had plenty of time to practise my work and be creative!

How is the business doing?

It’s growing much quicker than I had ever imagined which is amazing and sometimes it doesn’t feel real! I’ve had destination weddings for 2018 and location shoots with models. If someone would have told me this is what I would be doing in 2017 I probably would have laughed!

Since the company began, what has been the biggest challenge?

Turning on and using a digital camera for the first time… that was a challenge! Thank goodness for YOUTUBE! I would say that my first wedding was the biggest challenge. It’s quite scary when your making memories for other people on their big day! But it was an absolute success!

What makes you stand out from your competitors?

I’d like to think the images I produce make me stand out. I like to work close up and and capture detail of the smaller features on our faces that we take for granted! The way I angle my work is also unique, I try not to centre my portraits, I like everything to the side slightly!

What’s been your best business decision?

It has to be working outside my comfort zone and pushing myself, even if it’s a challenge I like to just go for it! For example, moving away from just child and baby portrait work into wedding photography and events!

What is next for Madeline Images? 

I have two school nurseries that I will be working with this October. We all love school, photos don’t we? I have a couple of work experience students starting with me and some great weddings for 2018!

If you could help one business now with a single piece of advice, what would it be?

Try anything and always try to be one step ahead.

Finally, what is your favourite biscuit? 

Oooh can I say Jaffa cakes (they are on the biscuit aisle after all)? If not I would gladly settle for custard cream any day!