What a great weekend we had. Elsie and I packed our bags and headed off in the Z to our little piece of Welsh heaven.  Whilst I never really saw myself owning a static caravan, I also never really saw myself having 3 dogs!  Once you get to this number, holidays abroad are pretty restrictive, mostly on cost. But also because I literally hate being away from my babies.  I’m not ashamed to admit, especially Elsie Baba. The older girls have always been daddy’s girls, then Elsie came along and I had a mummy’s girl.  The others LOVE me, but Elsie is my soulmate. 

So we bought a touring caravan. We thought it would be nice to travel around with the dogs and see some nice places.  What actually happened was that the dogs took a day or so to settle, rendering short trips impossible, or at least very stressful.  So we sited it on our favourite site, Erwbarfe Farm, nr Aberystwyth (my absolute favourite town, anywhere) and rather enjoyed escaping for short breaks, with the girls more familiar and settling quickly.  It helped that so many caravan owners were friendly and many had dogs, too. 

As with so many static owners who had upgraded from a tourer, it was only a matter of time before we also took that step.  And we’ve never been happier. 

But enough about that for now (believe me, I will be boring you shitless with befores and afters!), back to the weekend just gone. 

So we arrived late Friday and quickly got set up then out for a good stomp. It’s a 2.5 hour journey and Elsie isn’t a fan of car travel.  She endures it because she loves being with me. Bless.  As usual, we didn’t have a plan, we just wanted to walk and walk and chill and meet old and new human and doggie friends.  And let’s not forget the Silence of the Rams 😳

Here are a few photos for you. Hope you like x

{Just before she found some juicy sheep poop. And ate it.}

  
{The glorious view, and peace.}

  

{The Rams were not happy.}

   

{Not. Happy. At. All. }

 
{Unphased, we chilled on our patio.}

  

{Before retiring to our caravan to watch TV and practice our tricks. We need more practice.}

   

Til next time xx

Nothing for 2 years, then 2 come along at once. 

I’m actually just testing out the usability of the WordPress app on the iPad mini.  It’s so rare I’m in my office these days, but my iPad rarely leaves my side. 

Hopefully this will work and will encourage me to post. 

For now, here’s a photo of my new addition, Elsie-baba 😍🐶🐾 

   

Well, here we are in 2013 … and here we are almost at EASTER !

As always I have absolutely no idea where the time has gone.  All I do know is it has gone fast.  Very fast.  As I sit here responding to emails, arranging shoots, following up enquiries for various jobs, eating soup (pea and ham to be precise) I just thought I’d say hi.  And to let you all know the recent (horrible) flu bug didn’t kill me after all.  Just in case you’re on facebook and wondered, etc.

I’ve already kicked off my 2013 wedding season with a beautiful wedding in York … the season continues tomorrow at a local venue, including a church ceremony and some fun portraits in the evening … oh and potentially snow, again !!  I have some beautiful weddings again this year at great venues, I promise I will play catchup here and let you see some stuff.

I’ve also had some lovely portrait shoots.  There are loads more booked in over the coming weeks and I can’t wait to share those with you … from couples to babies to families, so much variety !  My studio (haha) Shugborough opens this weekend and I shall, once again, be using it’s many backdrops to my advantage over the coming months.

Following a fabulous workshop down in Bristol recently, I am now taking on Newborn Photography … as in, first 10 days kinda thing, totally cute, scrummy hats and blankets at the ready … know anyone due soon?  Get them to give me a bell for some incredible “opening” offers !

I’m thinking about rebranding too.  I know, I love love love my brand, I really do.  Unfortunately many people in the industry loved it so much they decided to do it for their businesses, which has kinda diluted mine (and theirs, oh well) … so rather than try to go round and slap people in the shins for copying me, I thought I’d do the better thing and change mine.  Sigh.  Still, onwards and upwards … this may take a while, it’s going to be like tearing off a plaster you’re actually rather attached to (in more ways than one).

So, leave me a comment, say hi, whatever.  Let me know what you want to see … weddings?  portraits?  all the above?  You know, I have about 65 shoots to share with you … maybe more !!!!

Take care xx

I shot Katy and Mark’s wedding last Summer and you can see more of the photos in the wedding blog post (the above shot is from their engagement shoot) … I thought it would be fun to run a series of interviews to get an idea of the story behind the love story and the wedding … I hope you enjoy it, here’s Katy’s story, in her own words …

So Katy, how did you meet Mark?

Rather un-romantically, at work … our eyes met over a paper strewn desk.  I thought ‘he’s hot’ and he, in return, just grunted and put his head back down. We didn’t start to go out until about 6 months later.

How did he propose?

We went to Florida on ‘holiday’ in May 2009, which was a holiday with a triathlon planned in the middle of it.  After the first week and the triathlon were over the weather changed to the most bad-ass rain/thunder/lightening/hail storms I have ever seen. We took to driving to Clearwater to avoid the storms.  One day, after a rain shower, we paid 50 cents for a walk down the pier off Clearwater beach.  We were watching the buzzards dry out and were planning to go back to our hotel.  He said ‘before we go, I’ve got something to ask you.. Will you marry me?’

I think to this day he says that it is the only time I have ever been speechless!

Literally… No. Idea.

What was the most stressful thing about planning your wedding?

I would have to say, the guest list … Nightmare!

What was the inspiration for your theme?

We didn’t really have a ‘theme’ I knew that hot pink was going to figure strongly… which it did. It was just really simple.

Where was your wedding and why did you choose your venues?

We initially planned to go abroad and get married on a beach, but then common sense took over and we started to look close to home.  The ceremony venue was a no-brainer.  Shugborough Estate.  We had our ‘first date’ there and I spent a lot of time there as a child.  Lots and lots of sentimentality.  We saw the mansion house and the Tower of the Winds, which we instantly fell in love with.  I think we booked it there and then.

The evening reception location wasn’t so simple (back then you couldn’t have your reception at Shugborough, this has changed since!).  We initially thought about having an ‘outside marquee’ type thing, but given the unpredictable British weather (even in July) we decided to look at the local wedding venues.  We looked at Weston Hall, The Mill at Worston, Ingestre Hall, Sandon Hall and The Swan Hotel (interestingly, Katy, that’s where I had mine! … sorry, carry on …).

All of these were very lovely, but just didn’t feel quite right.  We then decided to have a look at The Moat House in Acton Trussell. Well, I was blown away.  It was beautiful.  Again, after a little bit of negotiation over the date, we pretty much booked it there and then.

We booked both venue about 18 months before the actual wedding (back in November 2009).

Where did you get your dress and why did you choose it?

I bought my dress from a shop in Lichfield which is sadly no longer there.  It was an Amanda Wyatt dress called ‘Poppy’ It was on a sample sale rail in the store and fitted right off the hanger.  I got it for less than half the original price, which was the deciding factor.

It was an ivory dress with pink beading all over the front, side and back.  I think the reason I chose it was probably because of the unusual pink beading (followed by the price).  I loved it and got a lot of compliments on the day and since!

So who were your other memorable suppliers?

Claire Garfield, Princess Brides, for the bridesmaids dresses and mens’ suits.

Alison O’Mara for the flowers.

My lovely and talented friend Sally Dean for the cake.

Euphoria Couture for my tiara/headpiece thingy.

Vivienne Westwood for my shoes :o) (forever known as ‘The Vivs’)

Oh and some bird with a camera … Hahaha!!! Love you Gill Taylor xx

We were really lucky with our suppliers, they were all very professional and we didn’t give them many ideas, pretty much said ‘we want pink, now go!’ and the results were breathtaking.  I met some lovely people and now consider some of them to be amongst my closest friends!  I couldn’t pick out one as being a favourite because they were all ace, but I would highly recommend Claire and Alison, both very knowledgeable and friendly … and Gill of course !

What were the most memorable parts of your wedding day?  Are there any particular photographs that define these?

The whole day was amazing, but I think that amongst the most memorable parts for me was probably when we went for some photos with Gill to the mansion house.  The staff at Shugborough arranged a bus for us to take us round to the house.  The weather was beautiful and, whilst we were walking around with people visiting the house looking at us, I felt like a rock star.  At one point a lady came over with a little boy in a wheelchair, she said he has something he would like to say to you.  The little boy then said ‘you look really pretty’ … nearly made me cry on the spot. (Katy, thanks for the reminder about this, maaaaaaaaan !!!)

I guess, for me, the following photos were my favourites from the day …

Finally, what was your favourite photograph from the day, and why?

OK, so I can’t actually choose just one …

This one sums up the day and has been taken with some of my favourite people !

This one has my 2 favourite men in it ! (Dave Grohl couldn’t make it)

And this one … because I have a standy out collarbone !

To be honest, it was incredibly difficult to choose.  I love all my wedding photos.  I guess that’s what happens when you have an awesome photographer !

Katy, thank you for your story … I had a wonderful time with you all on the day … and many more since, so thank you xx

Staffordshire wedding photographer

This past weekend found me doing something I haven’t done since I was a very young girl … ok, 18 and 21 years young !!  Back then I toured France twice with my friends, on motorbikes.  We took our time and saw many wonderful places.  I always wanted to have a chance to do it again, but without the camping and in a car.

So I was shooting a wedding in the south of France last Saturday and after looking at the abysmal options for flights (hand luggage allowances etc) I decided to drive and take a couple of extra days to do it in time and to get back to the office afterwards.

John decided he’d rather like to come along, so I had the added “stress” of finding somewhere I would trust to leave my dogs for a few days … eeeeek … after many recommendations for the same place (Quintessential Quarters) in they went and off we went.  It was a lovely drive down, I decided to drive the whole way, I enjoyed it that much.  I really got on well driving on the right and, apart from that illegal U-Turn in Paris that we will never speak of again, I was practically native by the time I reached Calais on the way home.

I decided to keep the professional photos for the Saturday wedding and to take some iPhone photos of the trip instead … here are a few …

So this was the trip according to Google maps … daunting at best …

Leaving Dover …

I didn’t lift a camera again until I got to the wedding … this was the ceremony in the 13th Century Church in the stunningly pretty village of Bram …

So, on the way back home, we stopped in the gorgeous City of Orleans … naturally I had to stop in and check out this church on route to our walk along the River Loire and to the pub, of course …

Orleans …

In no time at all, we were back in Calais … time flew, as did the driving … all 1900 miles in the end … Au Revoir France !

We were back too late in the evening to pick up my babies … this photo of Tess and Daddy says it all when we picked them up the next morning …

I think Millie is also glad to be home …

Thanks for checking out my blog, I hope you liked my journey … naturally I shall be blogging the wedding but in the meantime here is a sneak peek, taken on the banks of the canal just behind Dad’s house in Bram …

French Wedding Photography

Vicky and James chose the very chilled out and relaxing venue, The Matara Centre, for their wedding day … the bridal preps were in a little on site cottage, nestled in the mass of trees and foliage, very cute.  The atmosphere on the day was super relaxed, well except when James had a little cry as he watched Vicky walk down the outdoor aisle … we were lucky with the weather for the outdoor ceremony but we did have a little sprinkle of rain, making for fun photos with umbrellas !  I had a bit of fun with a tilt shift lens and man, check out those cakes !

A few for you to enjoy …

Gloucestershire Wedding Photography

I love second shooting … there, I said it.  I get to work with some incredible industry talent and one of those I work with very often is Sanjay Jogia from Eye Jogia, a London based specialist of Indian weddings and a top bloke as well !

I travelled to London and met up with the team (Sanjay and his lovely wife Roshni) where I started with the bridal preps … such a stunning bride with lots of colour and accessories … how she held up in the 30 degree heat with the weight of her outfit is absolutely beyond me.

The Sikh ceremony was held at the Gurudwara, where I happened to also pick up a rather massive parking fine … I know !! LOL

This shot caught my eye … right before we left the house, with Dad looking so proud and happy.

Enjoy !

London Wedding Photographer

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