DURING the first lockdown Amy Bateman was able to immerse herself in farming life on the family farm near Kendal alongside the kids - but with her camera always within reach.

And it was during this time that Amy took the picture “Rosie’s Lamb” that shows her youngest child with her favourite of the many lambs that replaced school friends.

“However, last year I just let them because it was easier; I let them play with the lambs a lot more and they did become attached. I really see that now in the picture.”

In that sense, it is a photograph that entirely represents lockdown, which is why Amy put it forward for Through the Locking Glass, a book of lockdown creations by artists across Cumbria published by Inspired by Lakeland.

The book is due to be brought to life in March at a multi-media exhibition at Rheged to include paintings, illustrations, 3D pieces and film. Artists have been invited to exhibit their original contribution to the book and produce a partner piece to show how their work has changed through the pandemic, as well as providing an insight to their personal stories.

Amy is relatively new to professional photography, but success came quickly. She always had a camera in a cupboard but her early career was as a qualified physiotherapist with her own practice in Kendal. “When the children arrived my objectives changed; I wanted to be a mother more and it became harder to keep up my professional development. I decided I would help out more on the farm and maybe go back to work when the kids were older.”

Things changed again when her husband, Colin, bought her a place on a photography course. “I became utterly addicted and obsessed. I found a brilliant community on Twitter where I got lots of feedback on my pictures and found it hugely stimulating and inspiring.”

She started entering competitions with her “nicely different” images and had a lot of success, which spurred her on and confirmed that her decision to be a commercial photographer was the right one, especially when she won the British Life Photographer of the Year 2019 award.

Amy first did some shots for The Warm Welly Company, based at Walton, last autumn and through lockdown has continued taking photographs for the company using her own children as models, and when restrictions relaxed was able to take outdoor shoots.

2021 promises to be busy and creative as she has been asked by David Felton to photograph 40 Cumbrian farms for a new book reflecting the diversity and change in farming against a backdrop of Brexit, environmental concerns and new practices.