He is only 16, but Jake Harvey has been honing his photography skills for almost a decade, capturing Norfolk’s wildlife at its very best
Meet a young wildlife photographer
When Jake Harvey was given his first camera as a young child, it was the start of a love affair with both photography and wildlife.
Now about to turn 17, he has held his own exhibitions, won awards for his work and is a passionate advocate for encouraging other young people to engage with the natural world.
“When I was about seven years old, I got a camera for Christmas. I hadn’t really used one before, but I fell in love with it straight away.
“We always spent a lot of time as a family outdoors so initially I started taking photographs of things like flowers, and then started taking an interested in wildlife, initially just from walking around the village and looking in the fields and hedgerows.
“I started using macro techniques and kept developing my skills, teaching myself about all the different camera settings and the way I could use them to get the best photograph possible.
“I went on a couple of photography learning days but other than that I am completely self taught. I fell in love with the art of it and the feeling of having the camera in my hands.”
Jake says he began saving up any spare money he could to buy and exchange cameras and equipment.
“I started to enter my work into competitions and then, with the encouragement of my family, started setting up my own small exhibitions locally.”
He won the King’s Lynn Priory Rotary Club young photographer competition in 2016, going on to win a Highly Commended award in the national finals; was awarded the Corbin Prize in association with the Campaign to Protect Rural England in 2015 and has been shortlisted in the last 22 of the International Young Bird Photographer of the year award.
And Jake is not only passionate about photographing wildlife, he is also passionate about conservation and protecting the creatures and habitats he likes to capture.
He is a regular volunteer at both Sculthorpe Moor and RSPB Titchwell, a place particularly special to him having visited it since he was a toddler.
“I meet lots of young people while I am volunteering or taking photographs at Titchwell and
I am always telling them that it isn’t about getting the best shot, but about getting outside. I love showing children why the outdoors is so magical, it is so important. And photography is a great way to combine technology with appreciating nature; they can use their phones as cameras in a positive way.”
Jake, who lives in Grimston, is currently studying photography at the College of West Anglia, honing his skills and learning different techniques, including portraiture which he says he loves.
His dream is to be a professional wildlife photographer and he is planning to spend some time living in Canada to gain more experience of different landscapes and wildlife once he finishes college.
BELOW: Jake, pictured right, fell in love with photography from the age of seven
RIGHT: A hare in a field
ABOVE: A study of an owl