Whoa there.....where have I been?!!!

Wow.....its been a while no? Far too long! And so much to talk about! I promise, I will try and keep things as short as possible, but this is me of course. Harder than it sounds.....

Since the last time I blogged, loads has gone on really. Life has been hectic, manic, hard for a number of reasons that I won't bore you with, but lets just say 2016 was a very tricky time for our family. But I digress. Still, business kept going, life moves on, so on with whats been going on!

After Charlotte and Rob's wedding, it all came a bit thick and fast!

October, usually the end of the wedding season, brought two very different weddings for me. First was the more "traditional" but no less fantastic wedding of Jo and Mark at Bedford Lodge. Great venue, beautifully chilled and relaxed wedding, Jo and Mark are made for each other and allowed me to indulge a little and were really into trying to create some lovely images. Jo looked amazing, Mark seriously dapper, we couldn't really go wrong. I think we succeeded!

Not long after that, on a GLORIOUS day at Wicken Fen I did a lovely, intimate and highly enjoyable family shoot for Charlotte, Richard and their two gorgeous kids. The light was low and bright, the surroundings was lovely, the kids played along and were a heap of fun and the photos were perfect for a lovely autumn day. Some gorgeous intimate moments.

Nikki and Giles' wedding was very different indeed! Drayton Manor Park no less!!! Married in the hotel of the same name on the grounds of the park, the wedding itself had a very heavy Halloween theme to it, with the guys themselves, I am sure they won't mind me saying, making the whole day a little different to go with their own "alternative" lifestyle and mindset! Both looked amazing, Nikki in a lovely dress that really accentuated her tattoos and hair, Giles dressed up like he had walked straight off a movie set! And to top it off, in the evening was a spectacular fireworks display that finished the day off brilliantly. The whole day was another superbly chilled honour to be part of. I wish them both the best!

November was a mixed month really. As I mentioned earlier, for me and my own family, 2016 was a difficult one due to a couple of losses that happened in quick succession. But it wasn't just my family that was suffering. A good friend of mine lost a family member very close to them after a long illness and then not long after that, while my family was battling our own issues, I found out that another friend of mine had the news that their Mum had a terminal illness too. The tragedy for my family and friends just seemed to come thick and fast in the latter half of the year.

As a consequence of this, I was asked if I would be able to shoot some photos for my friends parents as they were renewing their weddingvows while they were still able. Of course, I said yes. It was truly an honour to be asked and the day was a very emotional one, but also one of good cheer, respect, fun and lightheartedness, as was planned by the ill lady herself. Go out with a bang....she certainly did. To know I was possibly one of the last people to get photos of them together, as a family on that special day is a truly touching and emotional moment for me. It goes to show the importance of photography in peoples lives, yet its taken so much for granted. Memories to be cherished forever.

On a lighter note, an old work colleague, Vic, who someone who I have known for a long time, was getting married to her partner Jo on New Years Eve....another wedding at Anstey Hall in Cambridge. Vic and Jo would be my first same sex wedding and I was very excited about this. But before this, we had planned a pre-wedding shoot.....but the weather wasn't playing ball. So, we decided to do more of a family shoot (they had not long had their little boy and he was growing up fast!) in and around the house and what a shoot it was! Tea, laughs, sleeping baby.....we just winged it, but got some lovely images for them. Now, the wedding was going to be something else......

Back to Charlotte, who I did the family shoot for. She wanted me to do a "day in the life" shoot for her, at home, following her and the kids around just living their life and me capturing them in their day. I love shoots like this as its much more of a picture of peoples lives, without the context of being set up, or feeling like you have to play to the camera. Its relaxed, its fun and the photos can be really rather beautiful. I went to the house and the kids were already on form, so we just settled in for the next few hours and I shot away....such a privilege to be asked to be part of peoples lives like this. I never, ever take this for granted.

Then on to the big one......the Vic and Jo Spectacular on NYE!!! And what a day it was!!! In from the start, Vic and Jo let me have free reign. It was good to see Kerry Curl who did an amazing and superbly efficient job of making Vic and Jo look even more amazing. Kerry really is a make up artist who is at the top of her game, highly sought after and a really lovely person to boot. The ceremony was squeezed in to the library of the Hall, which was packed and there was hardly a dry eye in the house. But it was so much fun and lighthearted, the whole thing tailored to be as much fun as possible. And being NYE, it added that little extra to the day too. I can truly say that its one of THE most bouncing weddings I have been to! The whole place rocked with the frankly fantastic live band and then we had the delight of the midnight fireworks, which were beyond expectation. The whole day was an amazing experience, one that will live in the memory for quite some time.

So, we are now into 2017 and lets hope, certainly on a personal level, its a better one. Times are already troubled in the world right now, depending on which side of the fence you sit, but we can only move onwards and upwards and make life as happy and as good as can be. I started off in great style with a small and fun wedding shoot of Rachel and Mark at The Missing Sock, a quirky, fun little restaurant near Cambridge. They didn't want anything huge or spectactular, just a small close nit wedding for which to have fun. Their needs for their photography reflected that, but in the short time I was there, I got some lovely insights to the family, friends and the day that was to come. Rachel and Mark were open, fun, honest and up for a good giggle and the photos definitely showed this. If this was the start for my work this year, then long may it continue!