Nathan Calls in to Serve Up Culinary Arts Photo Talk

0 min read

25 August 2023

Chef Lecturer Thomas Turley pictured with Nathan Reid at SERC's College Kitchen

Cup cakes decorated with sumptuous chocolate and sweets Coffee bean mid air dropping into frothy coffee

We love it when our past students call back with us, especially when they offer to deliver talks and presentations to current students which will help them on their way.

We were delighted to welcome back SERC alumnus and entrepreneur Nathan Reid last term. Nathan completed an NVQ Level 2 and Level 3 Food qualification at another FE college, where he was taught by SERC’s own Chef Lecturer Thomas Turley. He followed his culinary qualifications with a Level 2 and Level 3 OCR in Media (now BTEC Level 2 and Level 3 Creative Media Production & Technology) at SERC’s Lisburn Campus and has kept in touch with the College and is happy to share his adventures.

Nathan said, “My passions have always been food and photography, the latter which I have been doing since I was 12 years old.   Although I started out in culinary arts, as my knowledge and skills developed in photography, I was keen to back up what I knew with qualifications, so I decided to complete the Media courses at SERC.  Whilst completing these courses, I spent my summer holidays working in the United States at a summer camp where I taught photography."   

He continued, “Since then, I have been building on my qualifications, skills and experience and the all-important equipment, which has culminated in setting up my own photography and videography business, Old Pine Studios ( which has been going from strength to strength."

“I was delighted when Thomas invited me back to SERC to give a presentation to students from the Foundation Degree in Culinary Arts at Downpatrick Campus. “My presentation to the students showed them the equipment that I use to take professional photographs and to make films of food and related products and services.   I was then able to give them tips for achieving similar results on a budget.  Everyone with a phone has a camera now and everyone takes pictures of their food – whether it’s a sausage soda from the local garage or five-star fine dining - it is important that food presentation is camera ready.   A picture of a gorgeous cake posted by your best friend can be as valuable as any advertising.”

Speaking about setting up his own business, Nathan said, “It has been hard work, but I love being my own boss and growing my business portfolio.  My work takes me all over the world and right now I have been working on a two-week filming job in England, which was extremely busy. In April past, I was working in Malawi, Africa, filming a series of short films on a humanitarian project which a local company helps sponsor. That job made me think a lot about what kind of work I want to be doing. I'd love to start focusing on filming projects that can make a difference and have an impact on communities and people.”

Nathan concluded, “I am a big fan of what you can achieve through further education.   For me, it consolidated my own learning and passion for food and photography.  I would certainly recommend finding out what you can do through your local college to match your passions and interests and just go for it!”

Apply now for courses commencing September 2023. Unlock your future #BetterOffAtSERC.