on landscape The online magazine for landscape photographers

An Accidental Book Venture

From curiosity to business venture

Ellen Bowness

I'm a passionate photographer (despite not being particularly fond of getting up for sunrise) and professional editor.


I was relatively late to photography, not getting seriously hooked until my late 20s, but quickly realised it was something I’d like to spend more of my time doing. My career up to that time was as an editor producing books for a large educational publisher, but I always had a yearning to be more involved with photography. In 2013 I self-published a photography location guide book, which started out as personal curiosity and accidentally ended up as a continuing venture. How I hadn’t thought of combining photography and book publishing before then is a mystery to me in hindsight, but let me explain how it happened.

Wasdale Head - enjoying the view on a research trip

The previous year I’d been to Utah to photograph some of its fabulous landscapes and while trawling the internet to find good locations to visit I stumbled on a location guide book called “Photographing the Southwest”. I’d never come across a photography location guide book before and it was absolutely invaluable in planning the trip beforehand. All the best locations were described, along with some rather enticing photos, and practical details about how to get there and what time of day was best to go. It made me wonder – why aren’t there books like this for places in the UK? The list of places I’d love to photograph gets longer by the week, but for some areas I wouldn’t really know where to start, especially “down south”, which for a Lake District native counts as anything below Manchester. That got me thinking how many people wanted to visit the Lakes for photography but didn’t really know where or when to go.

Ellie has just published a guide to "The Photographer's Guide to Scotland - Skye, Glen Coe & the Trossachs" which shows you some classic locations to visit on a tour of the West Coast. You can find out more about the books in our previous review here or buy for £12.95 from Long Valley Books

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