Karina Lyburn

P/T Lecturer (Hrly) - Photography

Digital, Tech, Innovation & Business

My photographic journey began as a child on rainy summer holidays in Scotland as I took pictures of fishing boats (the only worthwhile subject material in my 6-year-old opinion), with my bright yellow plastic film camera that leaked light all over the place.

Fast forward 12 years and, having become fascinated with a medium that freezes time and preserves faces and history, I chose to study Photography at Staffordshire University where my interests led me to pursue portrait and music photography.

Upon graduating I set up as a freelance photographer, photographing everything from school prospectuses to corporate events and awards nights, assisting at weddings to photographing an album cover, and everything in between.

For the last four years I’ve specialised in personal branding photography, working across the UK and in Europe with coaches, creatives, and consultants to develop their personal brand and grow their businesses with the help of fun and fabulous lifestyle portraits and bespoke stock images for their website, social media, and marketing and PR needs.

For more information about me and my work, please visit: www.karinalyburn.co.uk

Academic qualifications

Bachelor of Arts, Photography (First Class Honours) Staffordshire University


  • Portrait, music, and personal branding photography
  • 8 years+ freelance business experience
  • Branding and business identity


I support third year Photography undergraduates in establishing their identities as professional photographers, preparing them for life after university. Together we explore:

  • Finding their niche
  • Creating a portfolio representative of the work they'd like to pursue and seeking feedback from the professionals that inspire them
  • Researching and entering international industry-recognised competitions
  • Designing and building a website
  • Setting up and using social media effectively
  • Designing and creating branded materials such as business cards, letterheads, invoices, and more

I also run the Guest Speaker Programme part of the course, sourcing and hosting industry professionals from across the sector, so our students hear from voices in every corner of the photographic industry.


My photographs have been published in:

  • The Times
  • Thrive Global
  • Psychologies magazine
  • The Guardian
  • The Financial Times
  • Forbes
in the UK for Quality Education

Sustainable Development Goal 4, Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2023

for Career Prospects

Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023

for Facilities

Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023

for Social Inclusion

The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023

of Research Impact is ‘Outstanding’ or ‘Very Considerable’

Research Excellence Framework 2021

of Research is “Internationally Excellent” or “World Leading”

Research Excellence Framework 2021

Four Star Rating

QS Star Ratings 2021