Inspired by Julia Bradbury’s love of walking, The Outdoor Guide was created to share routes suitable for complete beginners and experienced hikers alike, plus an ever-growing collection of accessible walks suitable for wheelchair users and families with buggies. A lot of these walks are filmed by the in-house team.
Holly is a videographer for The Outdoor Guide. Trained at the University of Cumbria, the Lake District is a big draw for her and it is where she started her filming career. Find out more as we catch up with Holly:
Tell us about your early outdoor life
My family have always been an outdoor tribe, firstly because of horses, then secondly because having the kids outdoors was one way to keep a clean (ish) house! It never worked! My brother and I played outdoors until dinner most nights, and this time spent outdoors backed up by walking / camping holidays to the Lake District, I guess I was always destined to work in the outdoors in some respect.
What drew you towards filmmaking?
I never knew I was destined for film making, however I recently found scripts and have converted the tapes from when I was about 11 making my friends act out their parts. I think we did a Dr Who remake!
But it was my love of the natural world where I found so many key stories to tell, whether it was about flora, fauna or the effects it has on us.
Where did you study?
I managed to find a course which matched both my love of the outdoors and my creativity – this was a BA in Wildlife and Media at the University of Cumbria. There were many talented people on that course.
How is it working with Julia Bradbury?
Working with Julia is an amazing experience, we have worked together now for 6 years and she truly is a one take wonder. We work well together and get the job done, we now don’t even need to exchange words when one of us want something on location, it just happens seamlessly.
What equipment do you use?
So I use a variety of kit, all purchased from Park Cameras, who are fab to deal with. I use a Canon C200, or the Canon EOS R, which is mirrorless and lightweight. So this is great for filming solo walks, where I won’t be interviewing anyone along the way. With the C200 I normally take my Manfrotto Tripod, and with the EOS R I take a Manfrotto Monopod.
Do you feel the area is very male dominated?
Yes of course, as is the whole outdoor industry. Take my first year at uni for instance, there were 200 people on campus, about 30 of them were female… Yes, the filming equipment is heavy, there’s no two ways about it. But your muscles develop and I am physically active anyway so I just think of it as an extra work out whilst walking up the mountain!
What part of film production do you prefer?
I really enjoy being on location. The thrill of everything you have spent weeks organising coming together is amazing. There is no other feeling like it. I do enjoy the edit once I have got the first draft complete!
If you could meet anyone who would it be?
I have been very lucky and I have met my idol, of course it has to be Sir David Attenborough. We shook hands and everything!
What are your favourite films you’ve made?
At uni I made a film about the effects nature has on a child’s life, it might not be the best filming in regards to skill, but it was my first documentary and the message behind it I feel is so important. It might not be how I would film it now, 9 years later, but it is still pertinent.
I also love being on the road with Julia and her sister Gina. Our last trip found us on the Isle of Man. Julia is a natural in front of the camera.
I love finding new places abroad but also there are so many unique and character filled places in the UK. I am creating an online series called Beautiful Britain. This film is of Yorkshire.
Finally, I love filming with Debbie. Debbie and I go on the road filming stile free routes and she is the kindest, most colourful person I know. Here is a project I filmed for the Westmorland Dales.
Why do you enjoy filming walks?
I enjoy filming walking routes because I get to explore places that I might not have found otherwise, I get to inspire other people to go out and walk these routes too, and I get to support important issues, like the importance of green spaces on mental health, or the importance of the peat bog lands.
What is your next project?
I have two up coming projects. One I can’t tell you about, but the one that I can tell you is in Northumberland with Debbie filming along the beautiful coastline near Bamburgh Castle for The Inn Collection Group.