About - Jonathan Smith Photography

Jon has been shooting Scotland's finest homes and farms for over a decade, but the career he has built as a photographer owes much to chance. Although he has held a lifelong interest in photography, he originally set out to study modern languages, graduating from the University of St Andrews with an MA (Honours) in German back in 1994. Having little idea of what to do next, he heeded the advice of university careers officer Jack Daniels (real name) and flew to Vilnius in newly independent Lithuania. Over the next 4 years he tried his hand at everything from language teaching to translating Lithuanian cookery books into English, before deciding to try his luck as a freelance travel photographer.


In 1996 Jon's work for the Vilnius In Your Pocket city guide led to a chance meeting with Lonely Planet author Nicola Williams, who asked him to contribute some photos for the first edition of Lonely Planet's Estonia, Latvia & Lithuania guide. In the end one of his shots even made the cover. This launched a career as a travel photographer and by the turn of the millennium Jon was landing sought after commissions to produce the photography for Lonely Planet's expanding range of European city guides. Commissions included Lonely Planet city guides to Edinburgh, Dublin, London, Paris, Stockholm, St Petersburg, Moscow and Lonely Planet's lavishly illustrated Encounter guides to Tallinn, Ljubljana, Reykjavik, Copenhagen, Stockholm and Brussels. Between 1998 and 2008 Jon also received major commissions from the other big names in travel publishing at the time - the AA, Berlitz, Eyewitness Travel Guides, Michelin, Rough Guides, Thomas Cook - and his stock travel images have now been used in hundreds of publications.


In 2008 Jon decided to mothball his hiking boots to be closer to home and his young family. Since then he has carved out a new niche photographing residential properties and farms throughout Scotland for estate agents and home sellers. When he’s not behind the lens, Jon tries to keep his hand in as a translator (Lithuanian, French and German).


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