Meet Cal Cowie
Meet North East based photographer and videographer, Cal Cowie, who is our newest Barbour Beacon creator.
Meet North East based photographer and videographer Cal Cowie who is our newest Barbour Beacon creator.
Tell us a little about yourself and your work?
I’m a 25 year old photographer and videographer based in the North East of England.
I do it all, but specialise in; outdoors, adventure and product photography. The backdrop to a lot of my personal and professional work is in Scotland and the Lake District, where I spend a lot of my time.
Can you tell us more about why you decided to get into photography and videography?
Throughout my youth, I always struggled to express myself creatively and channelled that energy into outdoors and adventure sports. I started taking photos as a documentation process really; portraits of friends, places I’d been, products I liked and wore. I quickly became enveloped in expressing myself through imagery and learning the craft with my camera.
Transferring my skill set to video was a natural but a tough process. I was enthralled by the combination of moving picture and music, having been a DJ from a young age. I’ve always had a wild imagination wanting to tell my own stories and other peoples, but without the academic means to do so. I’ve never been an illustrator or a writer, so my camera became my pen or paintbrush so to speak.
What other exciting projects have you worked on?
I’ve been very fortunate so far this year! I was able to work on a project for Visit England and Lake District Tourism. It’s crazy knowing your work is going to promote your country, showcasing places you admire and enjoy.
Tell us something unique about the way you capture and create your content?
I try to capture moments from new and interesting perspectives. Throughout my journey I have been obsessive with framing, prioritising clean lines and creating captivating compositions. For me, the foreground and background play just as important roles in story telling as the subject. Hip-hop tracks, snappy transitions and strong baselines are dominant in my productions.
Without giving away your secrets, did you use any special techniques when creating content for Barbour Beacon?
I used 24 frames per second for all real time clips as I think it gives the footage a more cinematic feel. Animations were carefully used to enhance camera movements, transitions and location changes.
Do you have any advice for aspiring photographers and videographers and any lessons you have learned along the way?
Collaborating is key! Reach out to fellow creatives at a similar level to your own. Work on projects, keep in touch, meet up for coffees, share guidance and advice. This helps in many ways, more importantly gets you networking and developing on a personal and professional level.
Take photos and make videos about anything! Utilise days out, family and friends, personal experiences. I rarely leave home without my camera. Focus on the essentials and always keep in mind the story you are trying to tell. The technical aspect of film making and photography will come with time and patience.
Most importantly and especially with the dawn of social media, don’t constantly compare yourself to other creators. Inspiration is a vital fuel for the fire, but don’t get too wrapped up in someone’s journey whilst losing track of your own. Take time and give yourself a pat on the back once in a while. Look at an old piece of work and appreciate how far you have came since then.
What is your favourite Barbour Beacon piece from the collections you have seen so far?
What excites you about the future Barbour Beacon collections?
I can really appreciate the new approach on streetwear. The style will continue to develop, breaking further away from the heritage style of the brand and attentively adhering to the needs of today's consumer.
You live in South Shields too – the home of Barbour and Barbour Beacon. What is your favourite thing about South Shields and the North East of England?
The North East is a great spot which sometimes gets a bad rep. I live a stone’s throw away from our beautiful coastline, which I appreciate dearly and utilise regularly. Geographically its a gem for travel and exploration in the UK. Lake District to the west, Northumberland and Scotland to the North. Plus a minor 3 hour train journey to London for business necessities.
The new Barbour Beacon brand reinvents the rich Barbour heritage and DNA for a younger generation, what do you think it is about the brand that people love so much?
Barbour Beacon’s collections have modern silhouettes with thoughtful material selections. People gravitate to the modest colour palettes and clean branding. There are small little salutes to Barbour’s heritage which all can appreciate and admire.
Watch Cal's Barbour Beacon video below:
Discover the Barbour Beacon Pre-AW19 collection here.