i am a photographer based in the western cape, south africa. i prefer a natural style of photography with more emphasis on the real than the contrived. i like simplicity, i like nature and i prefer to use available light. having shot a variety of subject matter, a fair portion of it in the advertising realm, i am nowadays more drawn to shooting my own ideas and exploring the world of fine art. i also teach photography and offer workshops.my first experience with photography was at a young age with a camera given to me by my grandfather. i also built my first darkroom in my early teens and spent many hours developing and printing my own pictures. seeing my first role of developed film got me hooked!i was fortunate to be able to continue with my passion at school and did photography as part of my art syllabus. after finishing school i studied photography at the natal technikon and then moved to cape town where i assisted various fashion photographers.in 1995 i started assisting a local stills photographer, malcolm dare. this led to a business partnership, which lasted a number of years before i decided to venture off on my own. even though i was more drawn to the people side of photography, being involved with one of the best stills photographers around stood me in good stead especially regarding lighting and studio know how. here i was also fortunate to be involved with one of the very first digital studios in south africa. digital certainly has come a long way since those early days in the mid 90's!i started my own business, stuart mchattie photo in 1999 and took on a wide variety of work. i spent some of these years specialising in lifestyle fashion and children’s advertising. i enjoyed the realness of kids. other avenues included advertorial, editorial, catalogue, interiors, portraits, food, corporate and few others. i have also spent many hours on film sets shooting over-the-shoulder and stills for campaigns.throughout my career i have always tried to balance my commercial work with spending equally as much time pursuing my own ideas and shooting the beauty around me in the natural world. this is when i have the most fun with a camera!