This was a special one. For a few reasons. But mostly because this beach is the exact spot that both Emma & Sam have been visiting together for just one night a year for the last … years. It’s also where they had one of their first dates, and where Sam almooooost proposed! Luckily he proposed earlier in the year, so that when they returned, I would be ready to meet them, camera in had to capture their beautiful engagement photos.
I’d actually met Emma & Sam earlier in the year to discuss their super exciting Wedding plans for next year, so it was great to see them again, with some sun, clear skies, bbq, prosecco and a gorgeous sunset! We only had the one day to play with so Emma knew that we needed to plan everything before they headed down, timing’s, outfit and the dog. We had actually planned to meet in the day but I’m so glad we postponed until sunset to really capture the magic of this beach and their romantic setting. Emma knew exactly what she was after and having seen examples of my previous shoots at Kynance Cove and Bedruthen steps, we merged the two to form a beach sunset engagement shoot with a gorgeous floaty dress - perfect practice for their big day next year!
This is exactly what’s so great about engagement shoots when booked pre-wedding; they’re like a little mini rehearsal and practice for what kind of style and posing is best suited to them as a couple. Emma had mentioned they’d like the more informal shots where they felt less ‘staged’ and posed in front of the camera so we took it real easy and chatted the whole time between ourselves, almost as if I wasn’t there! Some of the things I suggested were to walk along the beach (nice and easy one), to stand hand in hand, sit up on the rocks to watch the sunset, and for Sam to stand behind Emma and wrap his arms around her - in a nice way! We then chilled around the bbq, poured a few glasses of prosecco and waited for the sun to drop that last little bit towards the horizon. This is when we could finish the session with some prosecco in hand to really highlight that beach side engagement AND capture a winning family shot with Calli by their side! Emma & Sam, you were absolute naturals the whole time and I CANNOT wait for us to do this all over again on your Wedding day, although I’m sure I’ll be seeing you before! This shoot was so much fun and I can’t believe it was only our second meeting - we always knew we’d meet but who knew it would be beachside (again) for engagement photos. We clearly have a theme going so enjoy your summer, and I’ll see you by the sea! ;)
If you’re thinking of booking your own engagement session, a few tips I can suggest to you are to think about location and light as it can really change the atmosphere of the shoot, dependant on what you’re after; and you’re outfits, this can also completely change the style of the shoot so have a look at some images and think about what it is you like - is it the movement of a dress? Is it neutral tones and colours? What about a countryside shoot overlooking hills and valleys in the distance? Will the shoot be romanic and soft or more laid back and playful.
If you have any questions do get in touch and we can discuss your plans if you’d like to head out for photos too!
I’d like to introduce to you all the lovely Chloe, from Life Unexpected blog, who I had the pleasure of finally meeting and catching up with while we captured some new headshots for her blog and new business venture. Chloe and I have known each other for easily over a year now but having only ever spoken in a mutual creatives group we’re both members of, we’d not yet met in person! This is actually a prime example of why networking, social media groups and a shared interest between a circle of creatives is so important - you can collaborate with so many like minded people, help each other out, learn new skills, become introduced to new people and generally grow as a business, whatever field you’re in, and this is exactly what happened. Chloe’s blog is a mixed lifestyle blog that documents her travels, family life, her beautiful daughter, fashion and all in between so as you can imagine, content and imagery is crucial to telling these stories and putting out her message in a much more inspiring and visual way.
With this in mind, Chloe contacted me about gathering some head-shots to use on her blog as well as to help promote her new business. Chloe aims to release a variety of courses and content that’s designed to help other small businesses build their profile; helping them flourish on social media in exactly the same way she has done herself, especially encouraging those Mums who want to start they own ventures, and small businesses working flexibly around their busy family lifestyles.
So why are headshots so important? There’s actually a few reason why it’s good to hop in front of the camera and the first, I’d like to say, is because quite honestly, people need to know who it is they’re talking to. No, it’s not the most vital thing in the world, but I don’t know about you…I like to know a little about someone before I invest in their services, product or business. It’s also a much more personal aspect which I think is pretty important and if someone visits your website or profile and feels like they can connect and relate better because they know what you’re like, maybe your interests/hobbies, location and your ‘vibe’ then chances are, they’re more likely to book you. They’ll feel like they know you and therefore will engage on a different level, like you would face-to-face. Another reason is that it looks much more professional. I’m not talking ‘selfies’ with puppy ears and numerous filters, I’m talking about taking the time and investing in a photographer to take some professional headshots that will in turn, keep your business looking more professional.
Should you all be thinking about getting headshots? Well…yes! Even I have recently been posting images of myself a little more on social media (Instagram!) because I feel like people can then really engage with who I am and what I’m about. Usually these are of me on a paddle-board or out on the coast but in the same week that Chloe and I met, I too had some new headshots taken by my photographer friend Olivia Bossert - we both did! The perks of a photographer friend eh?!
Head-shots can be taken pretty much anywhere you fancy..? Olivia had hers taken at her own home office so that she can share her working environment, mine were taken in my local coffee shop and Chloe’s were taken at Gwithian where we took advantage of the beautiful Cornish sun and sand! Picking two outfits so that we could change half way through, we walked, talked, stopped and with gentle direction from me, we kept it very calm and natural for the shoot playing with distance, texture, pose and feel of each image so that Chloe has a variety of mages to work with. Wearing a bag meant that Chloe didn’t feel awkward with hand placement so ‘props’ or pockets are always a good idea and instead of being stood still, we kept moving which also add’s movement to the image.
Do contact me if you’re thinking this is something you may be interested in and you too could have a selction of images like Chloe’s below. :)
So excited to share this Blog with you as I can’t tell you how great it’s been meeting these two, discussing plans and capturing their super fun Wedding day in Devon. I met Jack & Ester in St Ives earlier in the year while they were visiting to chat about timings, locations and how their wedding was going to almost be split into two halves; like a Skype interview I suppose - formal on top, anything goes below. This is exactly what their wedding day would be like. The formal ceremony, traditional group shots and couple portraits then as we entered the reception it became a summer garden party complete with stone baked pizza, gin and pool WITH inflatables!
Due to the delights of social media, I actually knew of Jack and his beautiful images as a fellow photographer, so when I got the email asking me to shoot his wedding I was a tad shocked, super excited and I’ll admit, a little nervous. Nothing like the pressure of ‘performing’ for another creative, hey! Aha Having met both him and Ester in St Ives however the nerves seemed to melt somewhat as I felt like I was sitting with two friends I’d not seen for years! I love when you all just ‘get’ each other, and can talk so easily with like minded thoughts and shared excitement. So you can imagine how I felt when I was told there would be a pool…..and a giant unicorn…..and a giant rainbow. I couldn’t WAIT for June to come round and be reunited with Ester & Jack to celebrate their day!
Something else I’d discussed with Jack, as a fan of slr photography, was that he wanted me to shoot some rolls of 35mm throughout the day as well as my usual shots; this way they would have both digital and FILM images to look back from their day! Despite shooting film for myself and my fashion and bridal photography I’d not yet captured any from my wedding’s, so with a roll in my Pentax, a roll in my Olympus AND my Canon in hand I was all set. (I’ve included both below, with some comparisons!)
Driving up from Cornwall to Devon I arrived at Dartington Hall to sliiiightly drizzly conditions which meant the ceremony would be held inside instead of in front of the gardens but with the Grand Hall looking as it did I was super happy either way. So with guests finding their seats, J & E’s frenchie Beets sporting his bow-tie and all-round high spirits, the only thing left was the arrival of Ester with her beautiful bridal party and adorable daughter who did everybody proud and stayed firmly attached to Jack & Ester throughout their family based ceremony, with lovely words from Esters Brother & Mum.
Post ceremony and drinks Ester, Jack and I took a small wonder around the grounds so that they could not only get their couple portraits but enjoy some time to themselves before we headed to the pool party. As well as slight direction and location suggestions I like to stand back and let them wander/stand/chat alone for a bit as it can be quite a busy day with a LOT of family and friends to catch up with.
Back at Ester’s Mums it was super lovely to see everyone making the most of the grounds which had been decorated with amazing pompoms, festoon lights and fresh flowers with a well stocked gin bar, beautiful spread of salts, cheese, bread and tapas, pizza’s being prepped and the hot tub ready and waiting. It didn’t take long before two of the youngest guests were in the pool too and jumping off the diving-board!
One of the things I find so special about being a wedding photographer is being invited into a pretty intimate day; hearing stories about Jack & Ester, their relationship, beautiful daughter and memories from growing up you get such a sense of how strong and loving they are as a couple and family. I can’t thank them enough for sharing it with me. I also can’t thank Ester enough for JUMPING ON THE UNICORN in the pool! We joked about it at our meeting and she was super keen on the idea but I wasn’t sure if it was warm enough to go for it on the day, but she did it! She actually did it, and what a moment! Best day and WHAT a Bride.
Thank you so so much again for letting me join you, I can’t wait see you all in St Ives when you’re next down! :) Thank you also for my lovely card which arrived in the post today! x
Having visited the smallest of the Balkans back in April as a test pilot for WeSUP Montenegro I was fortunate enough to be heading back, this time, to Croatia to Celebrate the wedding of Tom & Lauren - my cousin and his now WIFE! The Wedding location was right on the tip of Porec in the old town so we set about looking at places to stay around the area that would allow us to move about and explore as much of Istria as we could.
Istria makes up the most northern, largest peninsula of Croatia and is renowned for its lagoons, vast pebbled beaches along the coastal old towns, it’s national parks, vibrant cities and incredible architecture. It’s hard to imagine that it was in armed intermittent conflict until 1995 after declaring independence from Yugislavia in 1991 on the same day as Slovenia. With economic difficulties and divides between rich and poor, Croatia has certainly been in a long recovery but the country hides this incredibly well. The landscape is so stunning, untouched and rich in history and culture; the water a colour you can’t imagine and Italian history reflected in every town you visit on this amazing coastal stretch sat on the Adriatic Ocean. It’s low coastal towns, luscious forests and mountainous ranges provide vast geographical locational that allow for hot summers, ski seasons and a mixed, humid climate as you head into the hills - so expect some rain and electrical storms. With major towns and cities including Pula, Porec, Rovinj, Vrsar and Novigrad as well as copious Islands and local tours it would prove hard to fit everything in to one week. I can honestly see why so may people chose to road-trip or Island-hop around Croatia and I can 100% say I’ll be back to see more! As a rough guide though, I’ve compiled my top 5 places to go things to see if you find yourselves traveling north Croatia.
1. Porec & Euphrasian Basilica.
The stunning seaside town of Porec (pronounced Porech) - made famous by the world heritage listed complex of the Euphrasian Basilica is a must visit! Built across the 4th and 5th century’s, it’s one of the best examples of Byzantine architecture and art in the world AND is believed to be one of the founding places of Christianity that started with Bishop Eufrasiana’s house and expanded to include the atrium, baptistery, basilica and memorial palace with some integral parts being almost completely preserved. The stupid amount of steps up to the bell tower are totally worth it when your rewarded with the views across the town. Even if not everyone was happy about the dark, ancient staircase.
The restaurants, streets and hidden courtyards surrounding the Basilica and old town have so much charm and beauty to them, I’d suggest you have a good walk round before you decide where to eat. The harbour front provides even more options and places to stay as well as boat trips across to the islands and one of the Valamar resorts that are dotted around Porec. Walking into the town we obviously made a b-line to the first ice-cream shop that greeted us upon entry….we also happened to pass another as we left - I mean, it’d be rude not to.
Having got our bearings and wandered the beautiful old town, it also gave us a chance to find the location for Saturdays wedding; held at the sister building to the Valamar grouping in this incredible Manor that was exclusive to us for the entire day. What more can you want from your day than views across the bay, sheltered under the trees, in your own private estate that houses a beautiful building and celebrations that go on while the sun sets in front of us surrounded by amazing friends and families. There’s literally nothing more, right?
The Italian roots of Croatia were certainly evident in the incredible medieval town of Motovun as you wander up the cobbles streets, winding your way into the hills with views overlooking the vast vineyards and truffle forests, which alone, make it a definite visit. The wine, oil and truffles are certainly enough to rival that of the Italians so while we were there I didn’t hesitate to sample what I could and come home with a bottle at the best price you’ll be able to find it. The calmness, serenity and still of being this far into the mountains was probably what stuck out to me. That and the feeling of stepping back in time when the pace is slower, the environment older and the views……..well……I think someone had more unspoiled views than we did and I’d definitely be keen to follow suit.
We visited Novigrad one sweaty afternoon post Aquapark visit to see what it had to offer and it really didn’t disappoint. I only wished we had longer so I could jump in off the platforms and dine along the harbour front.
4. Lim Fjord & Rovinj
Boat trip & Rovinj were on my itinerary/to-do list and so we combined the two and headed south to the source of Lim Fjord and hopped on a boat (with some mild bartering, betrayal and switching captains) toward the coast passed the mussel and fish farms and famous pirate cave.
Rovinj itself immediately fell into top spot as far as my favourite towns went and as we looked for a spot to eat, again the restaurant became my favourite also as we sat with the view of the town ahead of us, local beer in hand and a plate of the best pasta I’ve ever eaten (And I love pasta). We did a loop of the whole town following the marina around, heading up through the main street and joining back at the square and I fell more in love around every corner. Each ally between building held it’s own spectacular view of the bay and as I stepped down one to a low bustling sound and music I found a platform carved into the rocks with colourful small chairs, tables and cushions were locals and tourists alike were sat basking in the sun with drinks and tapas. The same happened again down the next path with more locals spread further along more platforms where bathers were set up for the day and supplied with steps into the ocean to cool off. Now, anywhere hot enough to require steps into the sea to cool of with a drink is okay with me. Which is why I would highly recommend at least a full 24 hours in Rovinj to benefit from this novelty - so it’s on my list for when I return; towel in hand, bikini ready and stomach lined.
5. Our location
So with my favourite towns covered I want to talk a little about where we stayed for the week, because anywhere that sits ON a vineyard above the cellar their wine is produced and bottled from, is worth talking about. 20 minutes from Porec into Vineyard country, lays the small town of Ferenci where the Deklic wine business continues to grow and when you stay in their beautiful house ON site, you are of course welcome to tour their wine cellar and sample their produce whilst learning about their 4 generation strong family run business. I even helped stick some of the labels onto their 2017 batch. With 14 hectares of land, 6 different grapes, an incredibly limited run of sparkling wine and a Sauvignon Blanc currently establishing its vine in the fields behind, we sat on our last night under the stars with a huge appreciation for the family who have worked from the ground up to create some of the best wines’s we’ve tasted. We also sat trying to work out how to bring a crate or 6 back home with us!
So with a pool to ourselves, outdoor pizza oven and the cutest, super quiet neighbourhood around us with a restaurant at the top and bottom of our drive, our location really was the perfect base between days out. It was even the most amazing spot to storm watch from and we were treated to a real show on our last night as we watched the storm role in in front of us with lightning forks level with us in the distance!
Thank you so so much again to Tom & Lauren for inviting us, to our wonderful Deklic family for having us and to all the incredible locals who made the trip so memorable, fun, and a well and truly unforgettable experience. Please do ask if theres’s anything else you’d like to know, or if you’re planning a trip and want some advice.
Philly & Alan’s love story is a special one and I’m super happy to have been able to capture it for them as they celebrated their one year Wedding anniversary.
I’ve known Philly for about 4 years now having attended her very first yoga classes in Falmouth! We’ve shot for Billabong, for her yoga and their sponsor Animal but I hadn’t yet captured this beautiful couple together for the sake of just…capturing. This shoot was about exactly that though, and I LOVED it. Nothing fussy, nothing staged, no brief, just them. So with Philly’s beautiful styling, the incredible Bedruthen Steps as our playground and a cooler of prosecco we headed of to shoot as the sun went down around us. Again, Philly’s planning - an evening shoot, empty beach and husband.
Engagement shoots, couple shoots and wedding portraits can vary hugely depending on the client and what sort of images they’re after but I think stripping it right back to the couple is the most comfortable and natural way to do it. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll suggest a few things here and there, ask to turn a certain way or head in a particular direction or spot but inevitably it’s about being comfortable and…well, being you; weather that’s on a beach, in a field, along a coastal path or at home!
Professional surfer, photographer, yoga teacher, retreat hosts AND models, Philly & Alan have a fair amount of accolades under their belts and experience in front the camera which meant not only were they relaxed but aware of the shots they wanted and how they’d look which was amazing! It was so so lovely to watch them through my lens and capture them so naturally together.
As a wedding, couple and elopement photographer my aim is always to keep it as natural and as comfortable for you, the couple so there’s no pressure or worry about being in front of the lens. Last year I shot the beautiful Felicity & Luke down at Kynance Cove on one of the busiest summer days and they too wanted a natural, informal shoot like this which is exactly what we captured. They’re some of my all time favourite images! Check them out here.
I’ll be sharing more of these over on my instagram as I love them so much but they’re also all here for you to feast your eyes on.
Thank you so so much again to Philly and Alan for being the best and for having my capture some amazing memories!