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James Doherty – Bearsted by Lens

James Doherty has called Bearsted home for over five years now, in that time he has captured and shared some truly stunning photos that wouldn’t be out of place in a David Attenborough documentary.

It’s not just the wildlife that James Doherty adores in this part of the world, though: “I like the ‘village feel’ that you get living in Bearsted. Although there are still plenty of houses, there are also plenty of green spaces, including nearby Mote Park and the Bearsted Woodland Trust, which is beautifully maintained. Most of the people are friendly and it feels like you are part of the community rather than it just being a place to live”.

James’s photography has led to him meeting some great people locally as well as showerings of praise online, amongst his fans are CommunityAd and we had the pleasure of asking the local lad about his hobby.


What’s your favourite season as a photographer?

It’s difficult to pick one season as they are all uniquely beautiful in their own way. But at a push I would have to say spring. Lots of birds and other wildlife are particularly active during this period, flowers and trees are starting to bloom and with the days being longer and brighter it can make for some lovely shots. Especially during the current climate we live in with this pandemic, being able to escape for the day and get outside with my camera is something I cherish.


When did you first pick up a camera? And what inspired you to do so?

I first started really getting into photography around 5 years ago when my sister’s fiancé showed me his DSLR and some of the shots he had taken when we were on a day out. I quickly got my own basic camera and he showed me all the basic settings and tips for what I was interested in shooting. I have always enjoyed looking at pictures and I used to take many on my phone, but it wasn’t until I saw how much more detail and sharpness you can capture by using a camera that made me get my own.


What bit of advice would you give to any novices starting out in photography?

For any novices looking at getting into photography, my first piece of advice would be to not overcomplicate it. Photography can get very technical, and there are so many accessories and functions on your camera for some really specific types of photography. Start off with the basics, get yourself a standard DSLR camera kit and go out and practice taking pictures of anything and everything. Ideally, if you know someone who has their own camera then ask them if you can join them for a trip out. If this is not possible then there are some good videos out there that will explain the basics such as the exposure triangle.

My second piece of advice would be to simply keep on practising. The best way for myself to learn about different styles or shots I would like to take is to keep taking shots. Don’t be afraid of taking an out of focus shot or a blurry shot, I take many of them every time I go out with my camera. The idea is to keep taking shots, changing the settings slightly each time even for the same shot just to see the difference that it can make. Oh, and make sure you take a spare memory card with you so you don’t run out of space!

Photography is a great hobby to have. It gets you outside in the fresh air, it’s good for your physical as well as your mental health and it’s something you can do on your own. It may initially cost you a bit of money to buy a camera and possibly a bag or tripod, but once you have the basic gear you can go out whenever and wherever you want to and it doesn’t cost you a thing!


To get in touch with James Doherty for advice/tips or to simply see more of his shots, visit his Facebook page – James Doherty Photography or follow his Instagram account – jd-lifethrumylens.

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