This weeks blog is a departure from the usual fayre, it doesn't feature a real wedding[/gloucestershire-photographer-portfolio/wedding-photography/], provide hints and tips or showcase family[/gloucestershire-photographer-portfolio/family-photography/] photography. Instead it's about my weekend.
Funny faces, weird dances and crazy outfits, are all key elements of the photo album of my childhood. Each of these photographs tells a story, it reveals what my interests were, what I did and shows my transformation into who I am today. I am sure you similarly have photographs like these… some more embarrassing then others, but still cherished. As a parent, I am sure you will want to cherish your child’s childhood and document it for them. There are some moments which cannot be predicted, but thanks to the help of smartphones, have become easier to capture. However, there are still key times when it is important to set time aside to photograph your child and their current growth.
Who Owns Your Wedding Photographs?
The Value of an Image for Your Business
Children's photography sessions, Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire
Amanda and Giuliano’s wedding was sophisticated, elegant and beautiful. Amanda looked stunning in her dress and Giuliano, and his best men, looked very dapper in their tuxedos. The venue, Clearwell castle[http://www.clearwell-castle.co.uk] in the Forest of Dean, was stunning, especially midst the glorious weather and blossoming grounds, which were perfect for the bride and grooms intimate photographs.
Dave and Matt were married last month in a stylish wedding at the Swan Inn in Bibury[https://www.cotswold-inns-hotels.co.uk/the-swan-hotel/], Gloucestershire, it was a real pleasure to photograph their special day. Here is Issy's blog.
In Issy's latest blog, she has written about photographing older adults.
Top 30 First Dance Songs
They are perfect in every way and you want to photograph your baby’s every moment, capture these moments on your smart phone or your own camera, hiring a professional photographer can be amazing addition to remembering these moments, however it is not feasible to hire a professional photographer to spend every moment with you, here I will explain when it is the best time to capture your new addition’s memories.
Why it’s Important You LIKE your Wedding Photographer
Spring is finally here. The sun is starting to shine a little longer each day and the forest is carpeted with bluebells, enticing us all outside for some well-earned family time.
Jo and Andy's wedding by Isabella Norman
Weather Proof Your Wedding
Why hire a professional photographer for your business?
Photographer at work As a wedding photographer, my day starts long before your big day begins. In fact, the process can take anywhere from a few weeks to 20 months. In this post I will talk you though my ‘day’ as a wedding photographer, I want to give you an idea of what it takes to capture your memories and do them justice. After all, this is the best day of your life and the photography should reflect that.
Based in the Forest of Dean, Capture this Moment Photography offers both studio and on location family photography sessions.
Capture this Moment had a great start to 2017 to their wedding photography, photographing Gemma and Sean’s wedding
Issy has written a guide to wet weather photography including ideas if it rains on the day of your family portrait sessions or indeed on your wedding day.
"A friend is one of the nicest things you can have and one of the best things you can be. " - Douglas Pagels
I look through the frosty glass of my bedroom window and see the wintery world of the Forest of Dean below. The grey elegant fog is mingling with the deep green pine trees and the other bare brown branches. Later, after a warming cup of tea, I take a step on to the crisp grass which crunches under foot, the sound and action of the grass being crumpled is almost as hypnotic as the popping of bubble wrap. My lungs begin to fill with the chilling and rejuvenating winter air and my fingers begin to tingle as they clutch my camera, my head is whirling with just one question: How can I capture this and do this magical scene true justice?
Family photography in the Studio
2016 has certainly been an eventful year. I have captured so many memories for clients both old and new, young and old, in the studio, on locations. Captured the details, the emotions, family interactions as they celebrated many different occasions.
I had the pleasure of first Matt and Dave a couple years ago whilst I was capturing a special celebration for a very good client of mine, we hit it off straight away and have since then met at other special occasions and bumped into each other whilst out and about. I was thrilled when they announce their engagement earlier this year and felt very honoured to be asked to capture their special day next year. As with all my couples I offered a prewedding session, it is the perfect opportunity to get to know each a bit more, to help put everyone at ease when being photographed and generally have some fun. Matt and Dave chose a dog walk on Mayhill for their session, so on a crisp December morning we donned our wellies and took in the views of the surrounding area from the beautiful Mayhill. Monty, their gorgeous French Bulldog joined us and as you can imagine stole the show!
An autumn wedding for Neil and Mandy
Imagine, seeing a couple exchanging heartfelt vows only a few feet in front of you, at a view only the vicar normally gets to see. I know, it sounds extraordinary. That’s because it is. On the 19th November, this was exactly what I got the chance to experience with Kathryn of Capture This Moment. This was a view which I have never seen from before, as this was my first time shooting at the front of a church as a wedding photographer. I was using a 50 mm lens (as part of a challenge set by Kathryn, which was to shoot a whole wedding with just a 50mm lens all day ), which due to its low aperture gave me the ability to blur out the rest of the congregation and just focus on the bride and groom. This was an effect which I think showcased exactly what did happen at the church: the bride and the groom had blurred out the rest of the congregation, to them it was just the two of them.
For me, photography is about capturing forever those moments in life, whether it is a newborn, a first birthday, a walk in the park, a family celebration, or a wedding, each occasion is a privilege and an honour. Six week old Lily came along to the studio with her Mum for first portrait session. At six weeks it is always a challenge to capture those sleepy baby poses, ideally this type of session should be carried out in the first two weeks however it can be possible. Lily had very different ideas was super interested in everything going on around her, she was very content to take it all in. The results are perhaps not what was originally intended but as with all my sessions they were led by the client not by the photographer. This is especially important when working with newborns.
Some ideas for you to try on your next session with your family photographer or whilst out and about as a family.
I first met Sarah nearly two years ago at a wedding fair, Sarah owns Sweet Time Candy Cart,[http://sarahjeffs19.wixsite.com/sweettime] a business she set up when she was just 17. This year Sarah celebrated a milestone birthday and I wanted to create some portraits for her to treasure this moment. As well as studying for a degree and running her own business, Sarah enjoys spending time with her horse. We planned the session, sharing ideas on a secret sharing board on Pinterest[https://uk.pinterest.com/capturethismo/] - I use this a lot when working with brides and other clients whilst planning a session. Sarah and I wanted the session to show the special relationship between horse and owner.
Later this month I travel to Torquay for a weekend filled with sparkles, smiles and wonderful dancing. This is my 8th year of attending this event with my camera and holds a very special place in my heart. I first attended the event as a delegate, travelling with friends from Reading to dance, learn and spend time with friends. Then one year my life changed! Despite a life long passion with photography, a gift of DSLR inpired me to learn more about photography, I therefore enrolled on a City and Guilds course at night school. During the course, we were set assignments and projects to work on, at the time my children were young and needed my time a lot more, so for projects I decided to incorporate my life into these projects, one project featured children portraits, another a day in the life of a dancer and one featured Celebrating Dance[http://www.celebratingdance.co.uk]. Prior to the event I researched dance photography, working in low light, capturing movement, new equipment was purchased, a huge amount of memory cards formatted and along with my dance clothes I travelled to Torquay.
My first wedding by Isabella Norman
I am so excited to be offering a referral/reward scheme - it is my way to say thank you to everyone who recommend me to family and friends.
Becky and Tim were recently married in the beautiful village of Newnham on Severn, a place very close to their hearts, a village they spend a lot of time in socialising with family and friends. The village was the focal point of day, guests along with the groom and his best man met a local pub before walking up to the pretty church at the top of the village. Becky walked the short distance to the church with her father and bridesmaids.
For all the couples who booked wedding photography with me I offer a pre session, the benefits of this a numerous - you can read about these here[/gloucestershire-photographer-photography-blog/gloucestershire-wedding-photographerhints-and-tips-planning-5/].
Ongoing development and training is something I truly believe in. I invested both time and money to ensure I stay up to date, further my skills to bring you beautiful images that you will treasure. This summer I decided to further my skills in newborn photography and travelled to Poole to train with one of the best newborn photographers in the UK - Karen Wiltshire. The day allowed me to observe Karen at work, learn how to pose babies safely and confidently to create amazing photographs that parents treasure.
Like many people I dislike being on the other side... the other side of the camera. I really liked being on the "right" side of the camera.
Questions for your wedding photographer
During March I spent a lot time further developing my skills, knowledge and techniques.
Early April showers were dodged for this styled shoot at Prinknash Abbey organised by the Flower Girls.
Carol and Stuart's relaxed outdoor wedding took place at Painswick's Rococo Gardens. The gardens are stunning regardless of the time of year, late winter early spring, the gardens are full of snowdrops and as the year processes the garden continually changes with the seasons making it a wonderful venue of a wedding.
There was little tradition at Charlie and Emma's wedding. The couple travelled from Dubia to the beautiful Cotswolds and were joined by many family and friends for a weekend of celebrations. Much of the weekend celebrations took place at the stunning Temple Guiting Manor. I spent the morning photographying the details of the bride's stunning gown and flowers - which featured hops, these featured throughout the day and represented the couples' love of beer and the industry in which they work in. As well as these details I captured Charlie along with his best man and ushers before they headed to the church in Broadwell village, a beautiful Cotswold village where Emma grew up.
I am super excited to start offering parties, in the past I have offered photo shoot parties in fact I still do, however working alongside Rachel from Rachel Shilston - Inspiring Creativity, has allowed us both to add an new dimension to the parties we already offer. The first part of the party our guests are inspired to create, we have recently inspired a group of girls to create their own hippy chick festival flower crowns, these flower crowns are then modelled in a photoshoot both in the studio and then outside on the farm.
One of the things that attracted me to open my studio at Hanley Farm Shop is the amazing outside space surrounding both the farm shop and the business centre. This allows me to offer both studio portraits and a chance to capture portraits on location within the same session. I love being to offer both, recently Flo visited the studio. We started in the studio before venturing into the barn.
Autumn is one of my favourite times of year in the forest, beautiful colours appear. Catherine and James incorporated these stunning colours into their special day.
World book day, a celebration of books, reading and the joy that they bring. My daughter, like me loves to read. She enjoys many authors, rereads her favourites and enjoys visits to the book shop. One of her all time favourite books is Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren, a wonderful story of a girl, her monkey and horse and their many adventures. We have various copies of this book in the house but our favourite copy is a first edition illustrated by Lauren Child (we are big fans of Lauren's work!). Her illustrations really bring to life the wonderful adventures of Pippi and inspired a very special photo shoot a few years ago. It seems approriate to share these with you today on World Book Day.
I love children, I love their personalities, their smiles, their wonderful view of life. I enjoy photographing older children bringing out their personalities. I recently attended a wonderful training day with Kate Hopewell Smith. Kate has a wealth of nowledge and a passion to share this with other photographers. The knowledge gained during the day has certainly helped me when photographing older children and I thought I would share with you a selection of images from the day.
Tracy and Lee were married at the beautiful Forest Church in Drybrook, a beautiful day in May. Tracy's family have a long association with this local church, both her parents and her sister all married there.
Daisy and Graham married on a hot Saturday in June at Priston Mill, a stunning venue between Bath and Bristol.
A quick share of some useful questions to ask when shopping for your perfect wedding dress - I hope you find them useful.
I have to admit there have been times when I have been disappointed by size. Too small and it is lost, too big I have been overwhelmed, unsure what to do.
When you love someone, you just do. There are no maybes, no buts, and no whys - Cherlynn Shakespeare 1924
Last summer I had the pleasure capturing James and Becky's special day. Becky's favourite flowers - sunflowers featured throughout the day along with her favourite colour teal. The result day filled with much colour as well as love, happiness and laughter.
Did you know around 42% of marriage proposals happened between December and February? Christmas, New Year and Valentines day being the most popular. Mr G proposed at Christmas and this year we will celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary! Quite an achievement, 2 children, a dog, a couple of house moves, a period of time living abroad, some travel experiences are some of the adventures we have shared.
On a hot summer day, I had the pleasure of assisting Maggie from Maggie Booth photography in capturing Polly and Ben's special day.
2016 starts with some exciting news! All studio based sessions and some outdoor ones will be moving to my new studio, now open! I am thrilled to have a great space to capture more memories. Based at Hanley Court Business Centre, right next door to Hanley Court Farm shop, it is a fantastic location, lots of parking, a great cafe and the opportunity to offer both studio and some outdoor images for all sessions.
2015 was an amazing year. I was blessed with so many lovely clients, returning and new. I have worked with amazing small local businesses. Captured so many memories to create treasures to keep and share. Here is just a small selection from some of the sessions completed, we had lots of fun with bubbles, visited parks, celebrated engagements, recorded moments, grabbed props, captured the details, the emotion of some many amazing occasions. I would like to thank you you all, it has been a pleasure and a privilege to be involved.
As the nights draw in, the days become cooler, the forest comes alive with rich vibrant reds, oranges and browns. My favourite time of the year. The forest makes a stunning backdrop for walks and of course family portraits.
Back in July, I had the pleasure to capture Gwen and Alex's special day, Gwen and Alex travelled from South Africa to the Cotswold village of Temple Guiting. Friends and family travelled from various locations to join in the celebrations.
For me, one of life's simple pleasures is enjoying a view. A seven hour train journey across Norway was a wonderful way to view this amazing country, its wonderful landscape filled with fjords, waterfalls and mountains. Travelling from Bergen to Oslo with the ever changing scenery was a great opportunity to indulge this simple pleasure. Although the day we travelled the rain fell, it did not spoil the view. Here is a selection of some of the images captured during our journey.
Becky and James are getting married this month. For their pre-wedding session we visited Symonds Yat, a stunning location which means a lot to the couple. Despite the showers, we managed to try quite a few different ideas. Following the session, Becky and James selected their favourite image to have made into a signing frame.
The simple things really are the best. Days out with family, picnics in the woods, BBQs on the beach. This week I enjoyed as great day out with my two and of course the dog at a beach not too far from home. We chucked in a disposal BBQ, a packet of sausages, some bread rolls, bats and balls, bubbles and headed to the coast for a day of relaxing and enjoying each others company. Of course it is also a great chance to capture some memories ;)
A family day out in Morris Minor Traveller, a little damp at times but a huge amount of fun. Here are some of the images captured during the day.
A chilly, sunny day back in March I had the pleasure to capture Susie and Andrew's special day.
A glorious day early in May was the perfect opportunity for a family picnic. We visited Mayhill, a local beauty spot but despite having lived in the area for nearly 5 years we had yet to visit. The brisk walk up hill was certainly worth it, the views were stunning and also perfect for a spot of kite flying :)
Just a few helpful hints and tips to help you prepare for your big day.
Last week I have the pleasure once again to photograph the prom for The Forest High School. The prom was held at Bells Hotel and Golf Club in Coleford. With a colour scheme featuring tiffany blue, the venue was decorated with fairy lights and accents of blue were used throughout.
Engagement sessions are a great opportunity to celebrate this unique phase of life.
First birthdays are a special moment, one to treasure, one to capture a few special moments.
We spend the majority of our lives plugged into some device laptop, phone, tv, etc. It is crucial that we take the time to unplug and be truly present in the moments that matter. By asking your guests to turn off their devices, you are asking them to experience the day with you and be part of the love that you are feeling and wish to share with them. You are asking them to relate to you and their world through their experiences, rather than relating through their LCD screens. Ask your guests to be truly present and participate rather than being observers. Additionally, you have put a lot of time and effort into choosing the perfectly matched photographers to your style, personality and needs. When you get your pictures back do you want them of your guests enjoying your day or of your guests experiencing the day through downturned faces toward their devices? While we can be the first to admit to this, stand up and proudly announce our, often obsessive, love for smart phones, we also believe strongly in the power of turning them off and being present in the moment