Campus photography and photographs of everyday student life for University of Cumbria to use across their marketing

I started working with University of Cumbria early 2023, mapping out a photographic strategy with their team that would kit them out with a suite of fresh, new campus photography for each of their widely-spread sites. Headquartered in and from the incredible landscape and natural environment of Cumbria, with campuses in Carlisle, Lancaster, Ambleside, and London.

Each campus had a different set of requirements when it came to defining the brief for shooting their university photography. Whether dictated by the distinction in subjects offered at each campus, or their unique location and surroundings.

For their Lancaster site, the focus was more on campus photography – showcasing the facilities and the architecture and how students interacted within those spaces.

While the brief for the Carlisle Brampton Road campus was to be more subject based, so it was more about educational photography that demonstrated the range of Arts subjects covered by the site. We’d still be shooting photographs with students but the context of the images should convey more about what they are studying and where.

Having a London campus is also a big selling point, so the brief included an element of location and placemaking photography – providing a real sense of where the campus is located and how it differs from the other sites. The photography should use London as a selling point, so shots of red buses outside the main building and glimpses of the capital’s cityscape in the background worked perfectly.

Ambleside’s location is also a huge feature, and couldn’t be more different to the London campus. Studies here are more centred around the natural environment and University of Cumbria are the only UK campus located in a UNESCO World Heritage Site! Students have unrivalled access to the Lake District here and so they wanted the photography to have more of an outdoor pursuits energy. I even got to scale a climbing wall to get some action shots.

The last of the campuses that I photographed was the University’s main site at Carlisle Fusehill Street. This is the site that has the historic architecture that typifies a university, so we made sure to capture more student lifestyle photography in the grounds, to show off the space. Specialist subjects are covered here too so we shot students studying physiotherapy and social sciences, amongst other subjects.

Part of the brief was to consider some of the awkward formats that the marketing team have to use in digital marketing – skyscraper and letterbox web banners for example. So I’ve included a couple of the shots that were taken with these in mind, so demonstrate how they might work.

I’ve already started to see some of this new work appearing in marketing materials from the University so I’ve also included a couple here to see how the work is utilised. And scroll to the bottom to read the client testimonial.

If you'd like to have a chat about a similar project that you might have that would benefit from architectural, interior, placemaking or lifestyle photography, then please get in touch.



Client Testimonial

“Steve has been brilliant from start to finish while working on our student life photography project across five different campuses. He very quickly put us at ease and what really shone through is his experience in successfully delivering results. 

Steve is super personable and has a real skill of asking the right questions to support in keeping the project moving in the right direction. Definitely recommend for anyone wanting to move their brand and photography forward.“

Ron Southwood

Campaign & Content Manager | Marketing and Recruitment
University of Cumbria

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