I knew photography would be my career since I was 14 and I left school at 18 driving a car which was bought with money earned behind the lens to start an apprenticeship in Belfast based studio ‘Advertising Photography’. We shot work for banks, government agencies, retailers, manufacturers and the food and beverage industries. I loved it! My parents had hoped I would follow my Father into engineering so it was with some relief, shortly after completing my apprenticeship, that I landed the newly vacant position of Production Manager and it all started to look like a proper career to my folks. I took the decision to become self-employed in 1993 and continue to make my living as a photographer to this day, my work in recent years being for a mix of advertising and corporate/industrial clients with a growing trend towards moving images in the latter.
Photographer Northern Ireland
I work in 4 main areas:
> Commercial photography and industrial work for clients who need to project a first class image for their businesses through annual reports, investor relations brochures and corporate responsibility activities.
> Architectural photography for designers, architects and the owners of beautiful buildings.
> Product photography for advertising clients.
> Retail photography for shop owners and designers.
These relationships depend heavily on a customer focussed approach with delivery on time and to budget. Recent highlights have included:
> Being commissioned to produce a 50 print exhibition to celebrate BBC NI’s 70th anniversary in Broadcast House on Ormeau Avenue.
> Photographing the restoration process of SS Nomadic and producing 3 exhibitions for DSD from this work. Two of these were displayed in Belfast City Hall’s beautiful east entrance, one year apart to show progress on the ship’s restoration and the final one was aboard the Nomadic during her final stages of completion.
> Developing the business to include moving image and 360 product photography.
> Seeing my photograph of Belfast Harbour Office used to wrap scaffolding that surrounded the entire building during maintenance work – my biggest print to date.
> Continuing to sell my Shipyard Carnage image, taken on the last roll of film I used before my workflow became exclusively digital, with sales having passed £25,000 this is my best selling image.
As well as being one of only two professionals rediding in Northern Ireland that are accredited by the Association of Photographers I have vast experience in aerial, maritime and automotive projects and can call on a huge resource of models, make-up artists, studio assistants, set builders, prop makers, pilots, drivers, safety / security experts as and when required.
In short, I am one of the most resourceful and experienced photographers Northern Ireland has to offer, you can read what my clients say at the bottom of this page.
In 2015 I was elected to the Association of Photographers Board of Directors where I serve alongside other Member and Independent Directors to help the Association in its continued quest to promote, protect and fight for the rights of photographers. The Association’s work includes submitting to Government consultations on changes to copyright legislation; participating in the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) governmental working groups; working closely with other visual arts organisations; and being part of the British Photographic Council and British Copyright Council.
I also serve on the Federation of Small Businesses’ Belfast City Branch Committee which involves planning forthcoming branch activities including educational and networking events. Our work also supports the FSB’s ongoing membership drive and efforts to ensure that the needs of small to medium sized businesses are reflected in public decision making processes at both council and government levels.
I previously served as Chairman of the Ulster Automobile Club where my role included organisational and financial responsibilities for the Circuit of Ireland International Rally (the world’s second oldest surviving rally with roots dating back to 1931) and Craigantlet Hillclimb (a round of the British Hillclimb Championship).
Steve has worked for me on numerous occasions over the years on many commercial commissions. His work has always been of the highest calibre and most importantly completed within the time constraints I have stipulated. Although I have used other photographers in Northern Ireland, as is fair in the business world, I have found that Steve offers the most dynamic and satisfying product for my needs, which is why we have had such a lengthy professional business relationship. His workmanship and innovative approach to his projects is second to none and his honest and considered opinions are highly valued by both my clients and myself. Stephens greatest strength in his photographic service, is the fact that his range of imagery is so diverse, as he is not channelled into one discipline of imagery, as many of his peer group seem to be. This factor, coupled with his personable character, makes him a difficult service not to work with.
Matt TimbersMatt Timbers Photographic - speaking about work undertaken for Asda
Listens to what the client wants to achieve, makes helpful suggestions and delivers a very high standard quality service quickly and within budget.
Lorraine CorryInstitute of Directors
Stephen is a highly professional commercial photographer with a creative flair which sets him apart from his competitors. Stephen has the unique ability to translate his clients' needs into a stunning visual interpretation that clearly demonstrates the benefits of their businesses. I would have absolutely no reservations in recommending Stephen and his innovative and professional approach to any business wishing to differentiate their product/service through creative photographic solutions.
I asked Stephen to photograph some machinery we had upgraded at a local aircraft manufacturer. The space available was very limited but the equipment very large. Stephen's grasp of our requirements, his ability to take difficult shots and get excellent results were fantastic! I was also impressed by his suggestions, merging the artistic with the mechanical produced some great material. And excellent value! I would commend Stephens skills to anyone. Well done!
Stephen BarrettSyetem Services
Stephen did a fantastic job for me, it was an outside shot so he had to tackle the Northern Irish rain but was still able to work to the very tight time frame I had. His product pictures were both professional and creative and both my client and myself were very impressed with his pictures. I'll be using Stephen again and would happily recommend him.
Lucy OatesRMS PR - talking about a job at the Titanic Visitor Centre
We asked Stephen to work with us on producing publicity shots for a forthcoming production and the finished product was outstanding!! His relaxed and fun attitude put the actor at ease and made the whole experience an enjoyable one! We will certainly be using Stephen again and would be delighted to recommend him!
Katherine CalvinGrand Opera House, Belfast
Quite simply the best photographer in Belfast. I have been working with Stephen for a year now and quickly came to realise that this is a guy who really knows his stuff. As a commercial photographer the results he has produced for us are fantastic and at really reasonable rates. He is great to work with and understands client briefs extremely quickly. I wouldn't use anyone else.
Jaime SteeleFleming Steele
Having worked with numerous photographers before for various jobs I can say Stephen is extremely professional and delivers creative vibrant shots. I worked with him for a day on the water in a powerboat and on land, shots ranged from wide scenery type images to social shots all of which were excellent. Finally he's not afraid to put himself into difficult situations to get the best results, in the space of a few hours he was hanging off boats and climbing masts to ensure he captured the best angles of the event.
Neil O'HaganStakeholder Group - commenting on work undertaken for Belfast Harbour
Stephen has taken images for us recently which we required to help us launch two new brands to our portfolio. The service Stephen provided was professional, effficient and fast! The images were of the highest standard and quality. I would have no hesitation in recommending Stephen to other potential clients.
Mairead CattersonRichmond Marketing, distributors for beverage brands including RedBull, Evian, Miller, Peroni and Kopparberg
The image specifications we agreed with Stephen Potts were just as demanding as the high standards our customers insist on. We were asking for a lot. The images that Stephen created with us were simply fantastic; bang on message, conveying emotion and hitting the viewers with a specific conscious and subconscious message about our products and our business. We couldn't be happier with the impact these images have had.
John McKeeLinkubator Ltd
Stephen Potts Photography has been working with our Marketing team for several years Provides our marketing teams with solutions which are very important in the busy environment we operate in. - Service levels are very good. - Very professional when dealing with any of our customers or on assignment. - Great ambassador. If you need photography services I would look no further - highly recommend.