In this Blog post I will be exploring what you can and can’t do (in terms of photography) during the current lockdown in England. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have slightly different rules, so what is written here only applies to England – not to the whole of the UK.
There are so many stories in the media about people being fined for (for example) driving to a local beauty spot to have a walk. Some of these are due to over-zealous police action, some of them are due to people pushing the rules to breaking point. However, it is easy to get very concerned about what you can and can’t do when you go outside your house during lockdown. What I will concentrate on here is photography – can you stop and take pictures while you are taking outdoor exercise? And can you go out specifically to take pictures?
As with all good questions, the answer is “it depends”. I am a professional photographer. That means that I derive some or all of my income from photography. Some of my work is done sitting in front of a computer, but some of it means that I need to go out to take pictures. So. whilst I can work from home for some of the time, I also need to ‘go to work’ to take pictures of animals and the city at night in the snow (to take two recent examples). Using a bit of common sense I feel that, as long as I stay in the county, and don’t drive for miles just for the sake of it, then I won’t be breaking any rules.
If I was an amateur photographer, things would be slightly different. When I go out for exercise, I must stay local (but there is no actual definition of what ‘local’ means) and I can stop to take pictures. But how long can I stop for? Five minutes? Half an hour? A couple of hours? Again, I think it depends. It depends on where you are and what you are doing.