Real people, real moments, real stories; capturing life's most precious moments.

Welcome to my blog - hopefully I've updated it recently. If not, it's probably because I'm too busy - sorry!

First birthday party

October 28, 2020  •  Leave a Comment

Way back in the summer I photographed Ayanna's delayed first birthday party. I photographed her as a bump and then newborn so it was brilliant to see her again as a toddler. Her mother had worked hard decorating for the occasion and it looked lovely. Little Ayanna was a bit nonplussed by all the fuss but, with bubbles in hand, we went out into the garden to escape all the preparations inside and Ayanna loved the bubble play. 

Toddler dressed in tutu in the gardenAyanna in the garden Toddler dressed in tutu in the gardenAyanna in the garden Her big brother enjoyed the responsibility of being in charge of the bubbles and it was obvious that Ayanna dotes on him.

Ayanna had a change of clothes, as you can see - a real little princess!

Mmm, it tasted good!

Once the cake arrived we took some pictures of the birthday room.

My birthday parties were never this beautiful! 

At the end of all the excitement little Ayanna had a much needed sleep.

Mother and sleeping toddler

And then the guests arrived and I left. 


Headshots and dance photography

October 03, 2020  •  Leave a Comment

I've photographed Chippenham Dancing Academy's dance shows for several years now and it's been lovely to see the youngsters grow and develop their skills. So I was thrilled when asked to photograph Darcy for her university dance applications last week. A beautiful, confident young lady. She needed some headshots, standard dance poses and some more of her choice. One thing I don't understand.... why are dancers not allowed to have any stray hair in classical dance?! I managed to photoshop out the odd wispy bit that was offensive! 

Headshot

Dancer, classical ballet Dancer, classical ballet

Good luck with your applications, Darcy. I look forward to hearing how you get on. 


Playtime with puppies!

October 02, 2020  •  Leave a Comment

Just realised that I haven't put anything new on here for YEARS!! Sorry. During this Covid 2020 year there is not a lot of new work to feature, but at least I have more time to concentrate on my blog. In looking through pictures meant for my blog, I found these adorable pictures from early last year. Our Boxador, Dora, was mated with a pure Boxer and gave birth to 11 gorgeous puppies in January 2019. It was an exhausting 8 weeks until all but one of the puppies left to go to their forever homes. We encouraged lots of visitors, but especially children, to come and visit the puppies to socialise them. Little Agatha came dressed up nice and snug in her furry bear/cat? outfit and I couldn't resist going slightly mad photographing her - I'm sure you'll see why when looking over these images!

 

Agatha has dogs of her own so is not scared by these little devils, even with those sharp little teeth that love to chew and pull!

I hope these pictures bring a smile to your face as they have done to mine. Our "little" puppy, Socks is now over 30kg and is quite a character - I think he deserves his own blog post! 

 


8 ways to keep your smallest wedding guests entertained.

April 25, 2018  •  2 Comments

Candid child photography at a wedding

The picture is mine, but the words have been taken from a blog written by The Tudor Barn, a beautiful wedding venue in Bucks. 

Every wedding has certain guests. There’s the portly uncle who struts around the dance floor like Patrick Swayze. The quiet ‘Goth’ cousin, sitting in the corner, who you only invited because your mum told you to. And the tipsy bridesmaid who has a little too much prosecco… at 9.30am.

But there’s one kind of guest who can make or break a wedding. The child. They can be either delightful or demonic. So how do you keep the kids engaged so that they don’t ruin your special day? Here are some ideas…

  1. Treasure hunt – The grounds are huge here at The Tudor Barn, Burnham. A treasure hunt will keep them occupied for a good hour or so as they follow the clues. Make sure everyone gets a prize too, so no tears.
  2. Goody bags – Get activity packs together to keep them busy at the table, including puzzles and colouring. Tailor them depending on their ages. But stick to crayons, not felt-tip pens. Many venues (including ours) don’t allow pens as they can damage the linen tablecloths.
  3. Disposable Camera I-Spy game – Give every kid a cheap disposable camera and a list of things to photograph. And off they go…
  4. Garden games – You can hire all kinds of games through The Tudor Barn. From giant Jenga and Connect 4, to crazy golf and table tennis. Guaranteed fun. Just ask us what’s available.
  5. Arts & Crafts table – Organise a table full of creative things to do. Beads, tubs of Lego, loom bands… Maybe get one of the older kids to oversee everything.
  6. Dance off – Set aside 10 minutes of your disco time for a kids dance competition. It’ll also wear the darling little cherubs out. Bonus.
  7. Face painter – Always popular with kids. You might get one or two grown ups having a go as well (like that tipsy bridesmaid we mentioned earlier).
  8. A big cage – Kids just love being confined to a cage in a soundproof room! (That’s a joke, of course. It doesn’t have to be soundproof!)

If you have a wedding to organise, I hope this has been helpful.

 


Family photography in the snow

March 20, 2018  •  2 Comments

Don't you just love when it snows? That excited feeling waking up in the morning and knowing that it's snowed without looking outside, because of the special quietness after a snowfall.

I took my long 75-300 mm lens along with my sister and dog to try and get some real action shots. We chose a spot with lots of snow and a reasonable background and Jane started throwing snowballs at Dora the dog. It's much harder than it looks! I kept the aperture fairly small (f7.1) because I know from experience that I won't be able to get sharp images when the dog is moving so much. I put the camera on burst shooting to maximise my chances of getting a good shot, but then found that the focus point was sometimes moving on to the background. So I put the lens on manual focus which worked well, so long as Dora stayed roughly in the same plane. Here are a few of the images I got:

Dog catching snowballsAcrobatics in the snow dog trying to catch snowballsdog trying to catch snowballs   Playing with the dog in the snowPlaying with the dog in the snow

Running with the dog in the snowRunning with the dog in the snow

There was quite a bit of fiddling necessary in Lightroom afterwards as the contrast was huge with white snow and a dog that's nearly black! I lifted the shadows quite a bit, increased the clarity and warmed the images up a bit as it makes me feel better! I hope you like them.

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