Saturday, 8 December 2012

Laura & Ross | Engagement

I met Ross just over two years ago when we did a show together so this shoot has been a long time coming! Ross and Laura were perfect models and it was great fun. We went on a walk in St Andrews stopping off at places along the way to take pics. It was absolutely freezing but we powered through - I was just thankful the forecast rain was holding off. 

It always takes a while for couples to relax and forget about the camera at the beginning of a shoot but I keep quiet, bide my time - wait for the laughter that comes after the silence and suddenly the photos take a life of their own...

I love this part of St Andrews as the walk contains lots of different types of locations - fields, woods, river etc.

I really loved this shoot and it was great to spend the time Ross & Laura - such gorgeous people.

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, 6 December 2012

Jenny & Chris | Engagement

 I've known Jenny and Chris for years now and they are really wonderful people (& friends!) so I jumped at the chance to do an engagement shoot for them while I was up in Scotland. We quickly realised that we only had one day that would work for all of us so when the Sunday came round and it was pouring with rain there was no going back...

Jenny and Chris had suggested shooting at Chris' family home on the outskirts of Edinburgh so we jumped in the car and drove out there. It was a perfect setting and seriously beautiful. After a quick tour we started shooting in the attic and then moved around the house. I always like to keep quite quiet during couple shoot and just let them chat/giggle away, Jenny and Chris did not disappoint! Probably one of the giggliest couples I know...

Once we'd shot in a couple of rooms we decided to brave the rain (which had died down a little!) and go outside where we got my favourite photos from the day - 

And then we went back to giggles...

It was a really great afternoon spent taking photos of two beautiful friends and I can't wait to shoot their wedding. I would have loved to have better weather - I find rain and bright sunshine at the same time impossible!

Thanks for reading xx

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Christine & Richard | Wedding

Christine's friend had seen my post online offering free photography and got in touch asking if I'd come to this Kendal wedding. I was directing in Manchester at the time but I popped back to the lakes to photograph this beautiful day!

I arrived to photograph Christine getting ready around lunchtime, met her beautiful bridesmaids and got the detail & preparation shots.

 Just as I had finished taking photos of Christine getting her make up done, disaster struck. My camera completely died. I didn't panic until I tried my spare battery and nothing. Not a low battery sign, not a light. Nothing. I had no idea what to do - I'd charged the batteries over night and assumed they were find as the green light on my (brand new) charger was on so I guessed it was a problem with the camera. I rushed home (which luckily was only 15mins away) and checked over everything. I had two hours until the ceremony so I knew I could sort something out which is when I realised that the plug in the kitchen wasn't working and my charger turns green no matter what you do so in fact it had drained the batteries instead of charging them.

All I could do is plug them in somewhere else and pray they got enough charge to last the ceremony. It was the most agonising wait!

Thankfully after that everything went smoothly! The ceremony in a church in Kendal was beautiful.

 As we came out of the church the light was the most perfect for the group shots - I hardly had to do any editing at all.

We had a few ours after the official shots so I left everyone to celebrate and went to find another place to plug my camera in for a while before the reception. I love the reception photography when I can just be a fly on the wall and document the special moments. Also balloons + children + dancefloor = hilarity.

So all in all it was a great day apart from the mini heart attack in the morning - I now triple check my battery is charging and carry my charger everywhere!

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, 7 October 2012

Wendy & Rob | Wedding

This was my first official wedding and I absolutely loved it. I was contacted by Wendy's daughter who saw I was offering free wedding photography to boost my portfolio. She said that they weren't going to have a photographer but if I wanted to come along and take some photos I was more than welcome. So off I went to Lancaster on the 7th September to record their special day.

I am not going to lie, I was very nervous but everyone was lovely and I enjoyed blending into the background, snapping away at special moments. I'm shooting my second wedding this month and I'm really looking forward to it. It's a full day (from hair & make up to the reception) so it's going to be new things for me to deal with but I like the challenge and I really love documenting someone's special day.

 This Bridesmaid was such a cutie. Couldn't stop taking her photo!

Bride and Bridegroom

Happy smiles all round. Thanks for reading! x

Friday, 5 October 2012

Annie | Portrait

I've been advertising a few free wedding photography packages to boost up my portfolio recently (still available before Jan 2013!) and off one of the messages Louise emailed to see if I did baby portraits. Now, I've taken pictures of my 5 year old cousin and some of my niece but never any of an 18 month old. I'm never one to say no to a photography challenge so I said I'd give it a go and last Friday we had the photoshoot!

Not knowing what the silly Lake District weather had in store I thought it would be a good idea to set up inside at first. I've got some studio lights (which I really don't use much) and a backdrop so I set those up in our large room upstairs. I wanted a more fun and whimsical look to the photos so I dug out mum's Christmas lights and started to hang them as a backdrop. Once I'd set it all up I took some test shots using the always willing Rosie... she's a pretty great model..

I fiddled around with the lighting a bit more and then I was ready - just as Louise and Annie arrived. We had a chat and a cup of tea, letting Annie relax and wake up from her car journey, then we went upstairs and started shooting. As I had the lights up already we went with a pretty pink fairy dress that I had in the house (it's filled with weird and wonderful props now!). Annie was a great little model and didn't make a fuss at all.

Once we'd got some fairy shots we changed Annie into a beautiful lace dress that Louise had brought with her. I love this shot:

I really wanted to get some outside shots and after we'd tried a couple more things (which didn't quite work) we changed Annie again - she really was a great sport at being a doll for an afternoon! - into the cutest outfit ever and headed out into our garden. We've got a great tree house with toadstools in so that was the first port of call and then went on to a few other places around the garden until Annie started to get a bit tired.

Editing was great fun and I really learnt a lot about photographing toddlers - it's much harder than I thought but Annie was as good as gold all afternoon. Here are a couple more shots I love:

 Adding some magic in the tree house

Louise and Annie

So there you go! Thanks for reading. xx

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Depravity | Behind the scenes

First post! I've been thinking about a blog for a while but kept deciding I wouldn't have anything interesting to say... so let's see how it goes.

I've got a recent shoot to tell you about but I'm waiting until the clients have seen the photos before I blog about it so I thought I'd go back and write about one of my favourite shots on my Flickr:

I bought the donkey's head off ebay quite a long time ago and had absolutely no idea what I would use it for but I bid at the last minute and suddenly a large box and a pantomime version of The Godfather were unveiling in my kitchen. The head sat in the house for a long time. I had a few ideas of what to do with it (one of which I'm still working on) but nothing leapt into my head. Then while I was up directing a show in St Andrews this image started to form in my head, I mulled it over for about a week playing with different scenarios until I had a definite concept and then we went for it.

David (who was up singing in the opera I was directing) was a very willing model and Katie came along to help out, which she did wonderfully as always.

It was a really fun shoot and we got many strange looks from dog walkers, especially as David decided to walk to the location wearing the head:

My kit for the shoot:

Donkey head (obviously!), Tripod, reflector (I use this all the time - one of the best pieces of kit I ever bought) and the wine bottle.

Once we got to the spot it was a pretty easy shoot to be honest. The weather was perfect and I knew what I wanted so it was quick to get David into position and take the few photos I needed. I'd just started doing expansions so I took a closer one of David and then took all the expansion shots I needed (and usually about 20 I didn't - I haven't quite mastered working out what I need and what I don't!) and we were done.

I did quite a big edit on this photo just to get the donkey's head looking right. The head itself is amazing but the eye came out funny in the photo and it's got a mesh nose so you can see where you're going (it was originally used in an opera so they'd have had to sing in it too). I'd originally planned to have a few more bottles laid about to place but it made it look too cluttered. So here is the before & after:

So there you go! My first blog.  Hopefully there will be many more to come. Thank you for reading!