Summer is here, and one of the great pleasures of being a photographer in Yorkshire is having so many stunning outdoor locations on our doorstep in which to practice my art. From ancient abbeys to historic houses, glorious gardens to wonderful waterfalls, marvellous moors to captivating crags and rugged rocks, Yorkshire has it all and thereby provides a rich and varied array of backdrops for any photographic shoot.Whatever the weather, it’s the time of year that I love to grab my camera, pack up a picnic and head out to one of these unique outdoor “studios”. Allow me take you on a brief tour of just a few of the places closest to my heart.

Fountains Abbey with its wonderful Cistercian abbey, elegant Georgian water garden and spacious medieval deer park, is one of my favourite places for a photo walk and shoot. The beautiful and varied landscape has breathtaking views and has miles and miles of footpaths and trails from which to explore the estate and capture fantastic photographic images.

Bolton Abbey with its 12th-century Augustinian monastery and 80 miles of footpaths, of is one of my favourite places for a family day out, walk, picnic and photoshoot. From a photographers point of view, it has just about everything you need for an outdoor shoot – abbey ruins, a river (with stepping stones!), wooden bridges, beautiful trees, stone beaches, far-reaching views and beautiful light.

Harewood House built in the 18th Century, is one of the UK’s finest stately homes and one of my favourites. Situated on our doorstep right here in the heart of Yorkshire, its 100 acres of gardens, including a famous bird sanctuary, provide some classic scenery for landscape photography and backdrops for family photoshoots. As a massive fan of period drama, I was excited to see it used as a set for recent the ITV flagship drama ‘Victoria’.

Brimham Rocks is always a hit with the kids and is a great place to have a picnic in the fresh air. I love the open spaces and exploring the acres of beautiful moorland and fantastic rock formations. The rocky terrain and the far-reaching moorland views also make Brimham Rocks a wonderful place for taking photographs.

Valley Gardens a beautifully maintained park in the heart of Harrogate, is an ideal location for a family photoshoot due to the variety of backdrops. There are wide open spaces with trees, beautiful flowers and foliage, as well as some interesting sculptures, all providing great opportunities for beautiful photographs. A visit to the ice cream parlour at the end of the shoot is always a ‘must’ – well for me anyway!!

Almscliffe Crag, a rocky outcrop in Huby with panoramic views across the Wharfe Valley, is a place I love to walk up to and around with my camera. The variations in natural light can produce some stunning shots and it is a location that I never tire of visiting.

This is a very personal selection based on my recent photoshoot experiences and, of course, there are many more wonderful locations to visit and photograph here in Yorkshire. If you would like to create a permanent photographic family memory in your special location, please contact me, Jools Henshaw, on 07590 562924 or at to arrange a photoshoot.