Weddings 2017

posted in: bride, film, groom, wedding, wedding planning | 0

Okay… so confession time. The last 12 months have been a really busy time for me, both with my photography and teaching (plus 4 year-old twins running me ragged!) and although I’ve kept up to date with my Instagram and Facebook feeds my poor blog has suffered ūüôĀ

Time to neglect it no more….so here is a little round up of a few¬†of my favourite images from last year’s weddings. I shot at some amazing venues including Wellington Barn in Wiltshire,¬†The Salcombe Harbour Hotel in Devon, The Great Barn on the edge of¬†Dartmoor¬†and The Folly Farm Centre in Bristol.¬†I also did some awesome family shoots which I shall blog asap…promise ūüėČ

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Hannah and Jared’s Wedding at Shilstone House, Devon

My first wedding of 2016 was Hannah and Jared’s at Shilstone House in Devon. I was really looking forward to this wedding for two reasons; firstly because it was my first of the 2016 wedding season and I couldn’t wait to get snapping again after the winter break, and secondly because I went to school with Hannah and many of the guests were old school friends whom I hadn’t seen for 15 years! (giving away my age there!)

Hannah and Jared chose the beautiful Shilstone House in Modbury as their wedding venue. Their ceremony took place in a lovely light filled barn, followed by drinks and canapes in the grand house. Finally guests made their way over to the marquee for a hog roast followed by a traditional Devonshire cream tea (jam or cream first? I can never remember!)

Hannah and Jared booked Plymouth based band The Sound (who were awesome- I highly recommend them!) as the evenings entertainment.

An amazing day for a truly lovely couple. Thank you so much for inviting me to share your special day x

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Getting married in Devon? Get in touch here

Irena’s family photo shoot at Bantham Beach

I used to visit Bantham beach as a child and I have vague memories of rolling sand dunes and surfers. I¬†was reminded of how beautiful the beach is¬†when I visited¬†for Irena’s family¬†shoot late last summer. The¬†picturesque landscape¬†and clear turquoise water made it a perfect location for a shoot and even though it was a busy summer’s afternoon we still managed to find some quiet areas to give the images an intimate feel.

Irena wanted her shoot to have a relaxed feel to it and for me to capture herself and her children naturally, enjoying time as a family by the sea.

Thank you Irena for inviting me to spend time with you and your beautiful children. I have since been back to this beach several times this summer with my twins- they love it! A great place for a family photo shoot! x

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Fancy your own family photo shoot at a location of your choice? Get in touch here

Thanks x

Anja and James’ Wedding at Mount Edgecumbe in Cornwall

posted in: bride, film, groom, wedding, wedding planning | 0

My final wedding of 2015 was Anja and James’ at Mount Edgecumbe in Cornwall. The couple were blessed with a gloriously sunny day for their Autumnal themed wedding in late September.

Whilst bridal preparations took part in the grand house at the top of the hill, guests arrived via ferry across the River Tamar and were then carried up to the house in little golf buggies.

The ceremony took part in the house with drinks and canapés served to guests afterwards in the stunning courtyard and gardens. Whilst guests made their way down to the orangery Anja, James and myself hopped into a Landrover for a little off-road drive to explore the grounds and take some portraits with the stunning scenery the venue offers.

Afterwards guests enjoyed food and drinks in the beautiful orangery followed by a live band.

Thank you Anja and James for a fantastic day xx

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Melissa and Sam’s Spring Wedding at Lupton House, Devon

posted in: bride, film, groom, portraits, wedding | 0

After 9 years together having met at their summer job Melissa and Sam became engaged while travelling around in India on the Andaman and Nicobar islands, marrying the following year. This inspired their theme with the wedding breakfast being held in a Raj tent lined with hand printed Indian fabric. Melissa and Sam chose Lupton House as their venue. The house is situated in Brixham, Devon and the current owners are in the process of restoring this grand house to its former glory. “We loved the elegance of Lupton house and its surrounding parkland which is right on our doorstep. We could see ourselves marrying in the mint coloured ballroom, which together with a hint of coral became our colour theme” explains Melissa.

She chose an elegant Jenny Packham gown together with mint green Rachel Simpson shoes to wear on their special day “As soon as I saw the Marion gown from Jenny Packham with its 1920’s vibe I knew there was no point in looking any further as my heart was sold”. The bride and groom chose a Raj tent lined with Indian fabric to hold their wedding breakfast, in which tables were adorned with coral flowers. “We wanted a relaxed feel to our wedding breakfast with food being displayed like a family meal beautifully dappled with edible springtime flowers‚ÄĚ.

The bride and groom hired a mint green Nissan Figaro, which Sam drove down to a nearby secluded cove where they had chosen to have their portraits taken. The soft pebbles and deep blue sea provided a beautiful backdrop for their photos.

‚ÄúIn the evening we had a ceilidh band to get everyone dancing and in tribute to my Scottish roots”. Melissa wore a beautiful lace dress from Mango to join in with the dancing before changing back into her Jenny Packham gown later in the evening.

Congratulations Melissa and Sam xx

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Dawn and Mike’s Cotswold Wedding

posted in: bride, film, groom, wedding | 0

There are¬†loads of things I love about¬†Dawn and Mike’s wedding. The¬†cute little page boys in their bow ties and Converse trainers, the¬†‘first look’ photos of the bridemaids seeing¬†Dawn in her dress for the first time, the¬†soft pastel colour scheme, the¬†stunning Cotswold Hotel and Spa and the FUNNIEST best man’s speech ever!

Congratulations Dawn and Mike xx
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Baby Leo (not a skateboard in sight!)

posted in: film, Lifestyle, little ones, Maternity, New born | 0

¬†A few months ago I was invited to photograph baby Leo at his home. It was a gorgeous sunny day as I drove along¬†the coastal road¬†to Anna and Bob’s home; a light filled house with seaside coloured¬†d√©cor and views overlooking the River Teign estuary.

Perfect.

And it really was.

I frequently look on Pinterest and other sites for ideas for my photography as I¬†sometimes feel that I’m not being creative enough. There is so much competition in this industry and I started to doubt myself.

This photographer is doing this,¬†that photographer is doing that…..

Am I being creative enough? Should I buy some props to take on shoots?

The other day I found a photo online of a new born baby on a skateboard.

Yes you read that right. A SKATEBOARD! And another was on a motorbike (apparently the dad was supporting the bike)

It just baffles me how people feel the need to introduce all sorts of bizarre props when right there in front of you is the most BEAUTIFUL baby, their legs curled up, their tiny little fingers and toes. Their perfectly soft hair. And complete overwhelming LOVE that is right before your eyes. And I decided that is enough for me.

And it was more than enough that day. It was amazing; the light flooded into the house, perfect for shooting with film. We didn’t need any baskets, watering cans, skateboards or motorbikes(!) to make this shoot an absolute pleasure to be part of. Thank you so much Anna, Bob, big sister Sophie and baby Leo for¬†reaffirming my belief¬†that all you need is LOVE xxxx

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Lucy and Tony’s Autumnal Wedding

posted in: bride, film, groom, portraits, wedding | 0

On¬†Halloween last Autumn I had the pleasure of photographing Lucy and Tony’s wedding at Stanton Manor Hotel¬†near Chippenham. We were blessed with a sunny day and were able to make the most of the beautiful hotel gardens. Lucy and Tony chose a¬†rustic/vintage theme for their wedding day, details¬†included a vintage suitcase for cards,¬†china teacups, hand carved wooden decorations and a restored vintage¬†tandem.

We made the most of the light and had some fun with the tandem, I then captured some portraits of Lucy and Tony in the garden amongst the fallen leaves as the sun was beginning to set.
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The Illuminated Collective Workshop

I have wanted to take part in a workshop for a while; to develop both my photographic and styling skills but to also meet like-minded professionals in the wedding industry. When I saw the Illuminated Collective Workshop advertised I knew it was an opportunity not to be missed.

The workshop took place last May at the stunning Barnsley House in the Cotswolds. The aim of the day was to bring together beautiful styling with photographers who are interested in working with film.

As soon as we arrived at the venue we received a warm welcome from the organisers Jessie Thomson (styling), Ashlee Taylor-Barnes and Holly Rattray (both Fine Art Film Photographers). Every attendee was presented with a welcome pack, containing a range of goodies including discount vouchers for other wedding vendors, which was handmade in a lovely pastel fabric.

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We enjoyed fresh coffee and croissants as we read through our packs and introduced ourselves. Then the fun really began… the 16 attendees were divided into 2 smaller groups, enabling us to have plenty of time and space in the grounds of the hotel. The day was divided up into ‘details’, ‘engagement portraits’, ‘bride and groom’ and ‘bridal’ portraits. Jessie and her team made great use of the stunning grounds and as the sun shone down on us I¬†realised just how lucky I was to be part of such a fab day.

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We had gentle guidance from Ashlee and Holly to help us with posing the couples, if we needed it. Working in smaller groups meant we were able to bounce ideas off each other and get to know the other attendees well. When I received my scans back from UK Film Lab I was delighted with the results. I used a mixture of Portra 400 and Fuji 400 (Full list of vendors at the bottom of the page)

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Illuminated Workshop

Vendor/ Suppliers:

Illuminated Collective: www.fineartwedding.com

Mentors:

(Photography) Ashlee Taylor Barnes: www.taylorbarnesphotography.co.uk 

Jessie Thomson (Stylist) РJessieThomson Wedding and Events: www.jessiethomson.co.uk 

Holly Rattary ‚Äď Belle and Beau Photography: http://belleandbeaublog.com¬†

Assistant Stylist ‚Äď Georgia Westwood: www.westwooddesign.co.uk¬†

Venue РBarnsley House: www.barnsleyhouse.com 

Florist РThe Rose Shed: www.theroseshed.co.uk 

Linen – Table to Dine For: www.tabletodinefor.com

Stationery ‚Äď Juliet Grace Design: www.julietgracedesign.com

Cake ‚Äď The Natural Cake Company: http://thenaturalcakecompany.co.uk¬†

Bridal Boutique ‚Äď The White Rose Bridal: www.thewhiterosebridal.co.uk¬†

Engagement Dresses ‚ÄďMaids to Measure (from The White Rose Bridal): http://www.maidstomeasure.com¬†

Wedding Gowns‚Äď Johanna Hehir (from The White Rose Bridal): http://www.johanna-hehir.com

Hair Accessories ‚Äď Kelly Spence (from The White Rose Bridal): www.kellyspence.com

Jewellery ‚Äď Astley Clarke: ¬†www.astleyclarke.com¬†

Crockery, Cutlery, Glassware – Helene Millot: http://www.helenemillot.com

MUA ‚Äď Nina Norman: www.ninanorman.co.uk

Hair ‚Äď Nicholas White: http://www.nicholaswhite.co.uk¬†

Goody Bags ‚Äď Lizzy May Design: www.lizzy-may.co.uk

 

 

My Adventure with Film

posted in: film, portraits | 1

People frequently ask me why I shoot film when shooting digital is ‘easier’. Granted digital is easier; it’s cheaper, well actually it’s free if you don’t count the cost of editing images, you can instantly see your images and delete any you aren’t happy with. On paper it does seem the better option and don’t get me wrong, there are situations when grabbing my digital camera rather than my film camera works best for me. However, I just love the look of an image shot on film ten times to that of a digital. The colours are richer, the slight grainy look gives it a nostalgic, romantic appearance, the light is just beautiful and has a lovely warm feeling that makes you go all fuzzy. Basically I think film is just stunning.

On a recent mini-break with friends I took some photos of my friend Hannah and her husband Jimmy wandering through a pretty garden in a country estate. Once back from the lab (which I will get to in a sec!) and published on Facebook, Hannah’s comment was¬†“beautiful, it looks all hazy and summery; exactly how I remember it” and that is the main reason why film is just lush- it captures a moment in time perfectly.

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My adventure with film started in Art college, but it’s a very distant memory of dark rooms, chemicals, and very grainy black and white photos that did nothing to wow me. I experimented a bit more in the dark room at uni but again, wasn’t really impressed by the results I was getting. I do love being in the darkroom though, it’s like a little secret world where magic happens. Like Narnia! It’s ten years later and I am teaching Photography in Swindon and I still love the magic of the darkroom. I love teaching my students how to develop their own film, enlarge their photos and watch as they place the photographic paper in the tray of developer and their image appears after a few seconds.

But only this year have I discovered my love for colour film photography. After reading this book¬†I was completely inspired and desperate to start shooting with film again. I borrowed a Canon AE-1 that was donated to college complete with vintage leather case,¬†and bought a roll of Kodak Superior and off I went, and it was a lot harder than I expected. Firstly, in an age of iPhones and digital cameras it was really weird not being able to see the photos. I found myself looking eagerly at the back of the camera!! I had to rely on my knowledge of ISO, aperture and shutter speed to suss out the correct exposure and hope for the best. Secondly, the Canon AE-1 has manual focus which with my dodgy eye sight was interesting to say the least!! But nevertheless I just loved the experience and was so careful not to waste my 36 exposures, which is another thing I love about film- I don’t waste photos. How many of us are guilty of taking about 5 photos of the same thing ‘just in case’. I do it all the time on my iPhone. Not with film. You have to actually use your brain too¬†which is refreshing! Here is the lovely Canon AE-1 and a couple of photos shot on it:

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After a bit of research I invested in my first film camera, a Canon 1V. I am still getting to know her (yes I’m one of those sad people who refer to their cameras as people!!) but so far I am impressed and I just adore the results. I am also enjoying experimenting with different film, so far Fuji 400h is my fave.

Nowadays it isn’t as straightforward as dropping your film into a high street store for developing. I use UK Film lab to develop my photos, but there are loads of others that I will get around to trying as each give different results. I send off the film and 10 days later I receive digital scans straight into my inbox with feedback from the lab on my photos. Lovely jubbly! Here are a few taken on my Canon 1V of the lovely Louise and Derek.

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As I send more and more film off for developing I am becoming more confident shooting with film and I love the photos I am creating. I hope you do too! Please leave a comment below and come back soon to see my adventure with film continue.

 

Renata x