Glacier / Yellowstone Roadtrip Part II

In my last post I wrote about our journey from Boise to Glacier National Park, well today I'm going to pick up from there and tell you about Yellowstone and Grand Teton!

After Whitefish/Glacier National Park we headed towards Yellowstone and stopped in Missoula for the night to break up the journey. Missoula was pretty sleepy for a college town we had a delicious dinner at Top Hat and great wine at Plonk.

We spent five nights in the cabin and used is as a base to explore Yellowstone from. Here are my top picks from Yellowstone...

Old Faithful - it erupts every 90ish minutes and if you're lucky/unlucky like us and get there right after it's gone off there's a long trail through hot springs and geysers to while away the time while you wait, just ask a ranger what time to be back by.

Grand Prismatic - we actually could hardly see it because there was a ton of steam coming off it, we read afterwards that if you hike the nearby Fairy Falls you get a much better (and less steamy) view!

Lamar Valley - wide open plains where bison graze (and cross the road from time to time), apparently this is also a great place to fish! If that floats your boat!

Mammoth Hot Spring Terraces - intensely hot water spills out of the ground and erodes the rock creating these stunning, ever-changing formations that look almost other-worldly. Drive to the upper terraces area, park up and get a closer look via the boardwalks.

Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone - definitely my Yellowstone highlight. The day we were there it was snowing heavily in the park and lots of the roads were closed, Old Faithful, Grand Prismatic and Grand Canyon were the only accessible sights. So seeing as we had already visited the former two we opted for the Grand Canyon! We spent the whole day exploring as many of the trails as we could in this area.

Earthquake Lake - this is actually outside of the park but well worth a look. The lake was the location of an earthquake in 1959 which caused an 80 million ton landslide and buried campgrounds in the process. The lake is about 25 miles northwest of West Yellowstone.

For the next part of our trip we had planned to drive to Grand Teton through Yellowstone (and hike Fairy Falls to get that better view of Grand Prismatic) but the snow had continued and roads were closed so we headed down the 20 instead. For a scenic view we decided to take a punt on a back road through Caribou-Targee National Forest and it was fully worth the risk! We only saw a couple of other cars the whole way and the views on this twisty turny road were wonderful. If you do the same, make sure you have a car with 4x4.

We chose the Mountain Modern in Jackson as our base for this leg of the trip.  The rooms were very clean and comfortable and the breakfast great! Jackson was a fun spot for the evenings; we had lovely meals at Kitchen and The Blue Lion and drinks at Million Dollar Cowboy Bar and Town Square Tavern.

We saw the Tetons in all their glory as we drove south through the park to Jackson, which was just as well as the following day low lying clouds obstructed the view almost completely!  We decided to drive the Hole in One route to take in as much of the sights as we could. We found the route in the Lonely Planet which stated the drive would take 1 hour plus stops - we made it last 6 hours! I highly recommend heading to Mormon Row, we saw lots of pronghorn here, and moose-wilson road is essential - we saw a black bear here! Of course I didn't have time to take a photo but it was top of our list and we were both delighted that we got to see one!

Finally we drove back to Boise from Jackson. The road west out of Jackson (22/33/31) has incredible views and we made a stop at Twin Falls to have a look at Shoshone Falls - which were almost completely dry but still stunning.

I'd say Yellowstone is a must-see for all, and squeeze in Glacier National Park too if you can.


Glacier / Yellowstone Roadtrip Part I

Is 18 months after a trip too late to blog about it? Well I hope not because today's post is a write-up of our 2017 roadtrip! I actually wrote the text as soon as we got back to LA but sorting the photos out has been a task I have somewhat neglected. It's a common problem for me, going through personal photos on evenings and weekends tends to just feel like work! I edited and printed a couple of the photos fairly promptly but they've sat under the bed ever since... until Art To Frames recently gave me some products so I finally framed one of them! Hooray! So that's what motivated me to get this post up at last, so without further ado here's part one of our epic journey...

Glacier National Park
We had 2 weeks put aside to explore Idaho, Montana and Wyoming and decided driving from LA would mean wasting pretty much 4 days so we opted to fly to Boise, ID, rent a car and start our trip from there! (we considered starting in Jackson, WY but it was way more expensive to fly there).

First off, we started (and finished) our adventure at the Modern Hotel in downtown Boise, I can’t recommend it enough, the staff were lovely, the rooms clean and comfortable with big beds and nice showers AND there was an awesome restaurant! We ate breakfast there both times and it was delicious, I only wish we’d had time to try their dinner menu too.

The main stop-offs on our trip were Glacier National Park, Yellowstone and Grand Teton, the stops in between were largely chosen on the basis of convenience in terms of breaking up the journey but were a good opportunity to see some unusual towns we wouldn’t normally have visited!
First stop was Riggins, ID, we stayed at the Salmon Rapids Lodge, a large hotel (considering the population of Riggins is 413) on the Salmon river, we had a comfortable stay and loved ambling down and exploring around the river.

Riggins, ID

Next up was Lolo Hot Springs, MT, the drive there from Riggins was possibly one of my favourites from the whole trip. A two lane road wound through the Nez Perce – Clearwater and Lolo National forests so we were surrounded by trees and followed the Lochsa river the whole way.

TIP: Gas up and grab supplies in Grangeville.

The Road to Lolo

We stayed at The Lodge at Lolo Hot Springs which had fun (albeit basic) cabin style rooms, and a couple of gorgeous (indoor) natural hot springs to take a dip in, for dinner we drove the 25 mins to Lolo and had a yummy steak at Lolo Creek Steakhouse.

The next day we drove to Whitefish, MT via the breath-taking Flathead Lake…

Flathead Lake
We had actually tried to find somewhere to stay in Glacier National Park but everywhere was fully booked for our dates (I’m pretty sure national park hotels book up months and months in advance). There were also huge wild fires burning in Glacier while we were there which meant the Western half of the Going-to-the-sun road was closed, this is the main road that runs through the park and is the recommended sight seeing route. So instead we drove to the Eastern entrance (St Mary’s) and drove the segment of the road that was open! The fires meant there was a lot of smoke in the park which you could say hindered the views, but we still think the scenery was stunning, and kind of liked the eerie quality the smoke added. Fortunately Logan’s Pass was accessible and we were able to hike the incredible Hidden Lake trail! The views were just awesome and because it was nearing the end of the season (and maybe because of the fires) the trail was thankfully very quiet, we wished we’d got there earlier so we could’ve hiked the extra 1.5 miles down to Hidden Lake itself.

Glacier National Park
Hidden Lake

I’ll leave it there for now, in the next post I’ll tell you all about Yellowstone and Grand Teton!


- advice for budding photographers -

This may seem like an odd post to many of you, but the thing is I get emails and DMs every week asking for advice on how to start a photography business, how to get into interiors, what kit to use, and I just don’t have time to answer them! I mean, I have a hard time just keeping on top of emails to clients! So I figured I’d write a post addressing the main questions and then I could send folks here!

How I got started

This seems like a logical place to start - since lots of people ask me how they can get into photography, I’ll explain my path first. 

I studied and got my degree in photography, probably not what a lot of folks want to hear since it’s common for people to come to photography as a second career. But for me photography is my one and only career - I got my first paid photography job when I was 20, taking photos in night clubs! Glamourous right? Nope. Whilst I don’t think it’s essential to get a degree in photography in order to pursue a career in it, I would say the advantages of studying are that it really gives you the time to decide if photography is for you or not, plus it gives you confidence in your skills and a sturdy base of knowledge to build on. I’m not saying you need to go and get a degree but I would recommend at least doing a few weekend classes to get you properly acquainted with your camera and to make sure that you do, indeed, love photography!

When I left university I got a job working with wedding photographer extraordinaire Lisa Devlin, I worked with her for a couple of years as a second shooter and retoucher/editor whilst also taking on the occasional freelance photography job (and waitressing!). I also assisted for a couple of fashion and portrait photographers. This is where I would say I learned the most about photography, shooting weddings got me used to shooting fast and in all sorts of light conditions and most of all - under pressure! The advantage of working with other photographers is you’ll also learn how to run a photography business - everyone does it differently but it will give you a real insight into what it takes behind the scenes. Working as an editor for Lisa gave me an even deeper insight into that side of things, since we would work side by side - while I was editing she was dealing with client emails, marketing and invoices, something you don’t get to see while you’re just in the field or studio during a shoot. If you don’t want to take a photography course then definitely spend time assisting other photographers - you’ll learn a lot and fast!
Me and Lisa in Vegas for a work trip.

Eventually I realized I didn’t want to be a wedding photographer - there’s a huge amount of pressure, the days are super long and working every weekend of the summer didn’t appeal to 23 year old me! The part of the job I loved the most was shooting the spaces and details and this rekindled a love of interiors I had had since I was in my early teens - I’d actually wanted to be an interior designer growing up! So I asked an interior designer friend of mine if I could shoot a project for her to build my portfolio - and it just went from there. Shooting interiors is very different to photographing people so getting lots of practice and experience was essential - I would recommend practicing in any way you can, start with your own home - shoot it from every angle and at intervals throughout the day, study every photo and decide what works and why. Show the photos to other people and see what they think! Fresh eyes are always helpful.


This is the question I get asked the most - what camera/lenses/lighting do you use? I may have mis-lead you here but I’m not going to list what I use, for a couple of reasons. Firstly - it’s taken me a long time, education and hard work to get my business to where it is, and as a result I am very protective of how I do things. Secondly - me telling you exactly what I use is not going to help you, you could get identical kit to me but your path in photography and experience is not the same as mine, so your results will be different. I will say this - I’ve been shooting with Canon cameras for 10 years now and I personally find there is great value in choosing a system and sticking to it - you should know your kit inside out! So if you don’t know where to start, rent a few different cameras and see what you like best. Same goes for lenses, if what you have isn’t working for you - rent a few different options, shoot the same composition with different lenses and compare the results. You’ll soon learn what looks best! Talk to the staff in camera stores too - they will know the advantages and disadvantages of all the equipment they carry.

*You will definitely need a camera with a full-frame sensor and wide angle lenses*


I feel similarly about editing software as I do about kit - you need to find what works for you and practice practice practice! Free trial versions mean you can try before you buy and by all means try them all - find what suits you best. There are endless online (and irl) classes and youtube tutorials should you get stuck. I’ve been using Photoshop for 14 years now and still have to look up how to do things sometimes, it’s an ever-evolving tool. I use a mixture of Lightroom and Photoshop but I know other photographers rave about Capture One so it’s definitely worth testing out all the options.

Licensing and contracts

It’s highly likely this is something you won’t even think about until you have to, so if I can impart anything at all via this post then let it be this - learn about licensing and always get your clients to sign a contract before the shoot. 
Alyssa Rosenheck wrote an excellent article about copyright - I strongly suggest you read it here.

Network and make genuine friendships

Actually, one step before that, use your friends! As I already mentioned, I had a friend who was an interior designer and shooting her work enabled me to build my portfolio as an interior photographer. Use the contacts you already have to get started! And then, build on it. Network (online and in real life) and make genuine friendships. By that I mean don’t just schmooze people you know will be useful - don’t look desperate! Make real friendships with people in the industry and not only will you grow a support network for yourself but you’ll also have a great set of friends connected to your industry who want to help you thrive!

Do you love it?

This may sound obvious but I really want to emphasize how important it is to love photography before you pursue it as a career. Creative careers like this can look super glamorous and appealing but remember you will be spending a huge amount of hours at a computer not only editing but answering emails, invoicing, business planning, writing contracts, the list goes on. This can be very disheartening and I’ll be honest here and say sometimes I wonder why I’m doing it when I have endless paperwork and editing to deal with, but I always come back to my love of photography and interiors (and working with awesome people) and it keeps me going through the difficult stuff. If you want to be good at shooting interiors, being passionate about design is also very important. Being engaged and excited by your subject matter will always lead to better photographs!

If you’re reading this then there’s a good chance you’ve sent me a message asking how to get started. I don’t want to discredit you for doing that, kudos to you - I never had the balls to email a photographer and ask them how they did it! But I will say this - there are no short-cuts to being a good photographer and running a successful business. It takes hard work and a lot of practice.