We had the good fortune of connecting with Christie Goodwin and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Christie, what do you attribute your success to?
Commitment and consistency. Commitment to not give up no matter the adversity or the disappointments along the way. You can only reach success if you are committed to reaching it and let nothing distract you, disappoint you or divert you from your course. You also need consistency, you need to deliver consistently good work to be able to get repeat jobs. Clients will only come back when they know that they can count on you to get the shot every time.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I studied photography as an art form which I feel has played a big part in my development as a professional photographer and in my career. I don’t take a picture just to capture the moment, although that does play a part in it. But whenever I press the shutter release, I want to create an image that is beautiful, that will stand the test of time, that will attract your attention. An image that you would hang up in a big frame on your wall. I’m continuously chasing beauty. Not just what is defined as beauty by society in general, but what could become beautiful through its composition within my frame, and what I find beautiful. It is most certainly something that has set me apart because most photographers chase the same moments and manage to capture those intense moments, while I often find myself at the other side, chasing a shadow because that shadow creates beauty within my frame.
I feel any artistic profession is never an easy road. There is a lot of self-doubt, imposter syndrome, a huge struggle with the feeling you might not be good enough for the job or your work isn’t good enough. The main lesson I have learned is that it is ok to doubt yourself, it is part of being a creative but don’t let it steer you.
And finally, do not compare yourself to others, if you start comparing yourself to others and adapt and change your way of working to measure up to others you walk a very slippery road. Stick to your process, stick to what you know best, perfect what you do best. In my case, I chase and capture beauty.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
London is a very large city, travelling from the tip of East London to the tip of West London on the London Underground can easily take you over an hour of travel. As with any cosmopolitan city there is a beautiful side to London and there is definitely an ugly side to it as well. I probably would take this friend to see the usual obligatory landmarks like Buckingham Palace, Hyde Park, a walk along the Thames, see Big Ben, Trafalgar Square and Piccadilly Circus, because when you come to London you need to check off those boxes. But as soon as we have visited those must-see tourist spots I would take them to some of my favourite locations. Brick Lane, a long road that has an artistic feel with all its graffiti, quaint shops, loads of eateries, and very East London vibe. And then there’s Borough Market, a huge market under the railway lines at London Bridge station, one of the oldest food markets in London. I could go on, the Shakespearean Globe Theatre, Battersea Power Station, Kew Botanic Gardens…
But I would have to say my favourite landmark is probably the Royal Albert Hall, London’s most iconic concert hall on the south side of Hyde Park. In fact, I took the last American friend who came over to the Hall for a guided tour and a meal. It’s one of the country’s most treasured and distinctive buildings, and it’s just beautiful. I’ve photographed more than 250 shows in there and I still love it. It’s beautiful when it’s empty during soundcheck and it’s beautiful at showtime, and it always looks different because the lighting is never the same, and because one day you can see a rock show there, the next day a movie with an orchestra, and an opera the day after. She can be quiet and graceful, and she can be wild and on fire. You can see what I mean on my website. And they have exceptionally good coffee at their Cafe.
For food I usually end up in the same places. SushiSamba at Covent Garden, for me, just the best sushi ever, And El Pirata, a lovely tapas place tucked in between Hyde Park and Green Park.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
It was the late Baron Wolman who was the first Rolling Stone Magazine photographer who inspired me. I used to see his pictures in Rolling Stone Magazine and they inspired me and made me feel as if I was actually there. I have always tried to honour that inspiration. It has always been my aim when shooting music photography that every image would make the viewer feel as if they were there. Baron deserves all the recognition in my story because I would not be where I am now if it weren’t for him.