Review of 2009


This is it! My last post of the year! I’ve decided to pick out my favourite shots from 2009 and tell you a little bit more about some of them, why I like them and why they’re examples of creative, well executed photography.

We start with an image from the pre-wedding shoot of Katie and Rob. This was taken in Castlefield in Manchester on a beautiful sunday morning and I was looking for a way to incorporate the sun and sky into the shot – this was the result…


How could I not feature my gorgeous niece? I don’t think I’ve ever had as many orders for reprints, enlargements, frames, etc. for any single subject before! We shot a series of very natural images at my sisters house and just tried to capture Megan doing her thing!


This is an image that has appeared very recently on the blog – I love how relaxed the lads are, in front of the camera and with each other. Just goes to show that you don’t always need to have your subjects staring straight down the lens to truly capture their personality…


Gina and Matt’s wedding in Devon – I love their reaction to the little boy handing out the confetti and the other guests throwing it. A real moment frozen in time…


I think this has to go down as my favourite reportage shot from 2009. This is from Charlotte and Pete’s wedding and I don’t even really need to explain it for you to understand what’s happening (a little clue – the window in the room where the girls were getting ready overlooked the carpark of the venue) Moments like this are real, you can’t set them up, you just have to be looking for them and ready for them throughout the day. Actually, I think I’ve played down how much I like this shot – I actually LOVE it!!!


There are a few shots from this fantastic shoot I did in spring at Lytham Hall with my friends from Flower Design and Dreamcatcher Bridal. This is the absolutely gorgeous Ella and I love this image as it has such a magical fairytale feel to it.


Another image you will have seen fairly recently – this one of Claudine from the Styal Lodge shoot we did in the autumn. I love the air of confidence you get from Claudine in this shot. It’s beautifully lit and the shot as a whole looks very aspirational, but it’s Claudine that really shows what kind of a bride she is (would be!) in this very simple, elegant yet empowering pose.


This is right up there with the shot from Charlotte and Pete’s wedding when it comes to my favourite reportage moments. People often misunderstand what reportage photography is. You see so many headshots of people at weddings, people laughing and looking lovely, but you don’t actually understand the context of the shot. Reportage isn’t about that. It’s about capturing moments and seeing what is actually happening. I love how much is going on in this shot, but the real magic of it is the glimpse of Christina, the bride, hugging her friend. It really shows the emotion of the moment perfectly.


This is one of my favourites from the portfolio shoot I did with Ailsa. She looks great, the location is great and from a technical point of view, is a very nicely executed shot. Without getting too geeky on you, we used an off camera flash to light Ailsa and ensuring that we were able to retain all the detail in the very dramatic sky. Love it.


Another one from Christina and David’s wedding. I just loved the fact that they wanted to spend a little bit of time shooting while their guests headed to the venue straight from the ceremony. We walked down the street in Durham and got some fantastic contemporary images by doing this. This is my favourite…


I love this shot of Ailsa from the Styal Lodge shoot. She just looks so elegant and beautiful and genuinely looks like she’s enjoying herself. It’s a very simple naturally lit portrait but simple is so often the best way to approach things…


This is where we walked to with Christina and David. The bridge overlooking the river and castle in Durham. What a fantastic backdrop. And Christina looks stunning.


Another great reportage moment from Charlotte and Pete’s wedding. I love her Dad caught winking at his wife and the guest to the right of the frame checking the dress out!


Another shot from the Lytham Hall shoot with Flower Design and Dreamcatcher but a completely different look and style for Ella. A far more modern look and much more dramatic than the ethereal woodland setting at the top of the post. She’s so versatile – and she’s not even a model!!!


Christina and Dave’s wedding. Speech time. I don’t think I need to say anything at all about this shot. Apart from how delighted I was with it! A perfect reportage moment…


A beautiful, intimate moment I was lucky enough to share with Charlotte and Pete at their wedding…as above, I don’t really need to say much more about this shot, it speaks for itself…


Katie at The Ashes – I love how relaxed she looks and I lOVE the colours – it looks very ‘botanical gardens’. Gorgeous.


Charlotte and Pete in full flow during their first dance! They look like they’re having so much fun, as do all their friends and family as they watch/cheer them on!


The only shot that doesn’t have people in that I feel is worthy of being included – a really moody sky, an almost sinister looking scene taking in Cornwall at Easter this year. I loved this shot so much that I have it framed on my office wall.


The happiest little lad I’ve ever worked with! I’d happily shoot Jayden every week he was that smiley. I shot this for his Mum and Dad, Adele and Jamie and they now have this shot on a 24×30 inch canvas on their wall. It looks magnificent blown up!


Another shot from Katie and Rob’s pre-wedding shoot. I just loved the mural and the scale of it. It framed beautifully and it’s a really different way to shoot a couple, almost letting the location overpower them…


Charlotte and Pete also had their pre-wedding shoot in Castlefield, but as you can see, it looks completely different to Katie and Rob’s shoot. That’s why I love it as a location. No two shoots ever look the same there.


Lytham Hall. This is all about the beauty of the venue. The dramatic staircase, the traditional features but a very contemporary take on it…


Paul Guard at Salford Quays. Shot in a similar way to the Ailsa portrait at the top of the post. Off camera flash meant that we could balance the ambient, natural light with lighting Paul and ensure that the moody sky remained. How cool does he look?!


Castlefield with Katie and Rob again. It’s so important when shooting on location to not try and change what is real about it. So that’s why I was happy to shoot Katie and Rob with this sunday morning runner in the frame…it helps to tell the story of the shot and location.


So that’s it! My favourite shots from the past 12 months! I really hope you’ve enjoyed reading the blog and that you’re looking forward to seeing what 2010 has in store for me. I’ve got some really cool jobs coming up, weddings in some of the UK’s best venues including Styal Lodge, The Great Hall at Mains, Lytham Hall, The Grand, Mitton Fold, Shrigley Hall, Alderley Edge Hotel, The Ashes to name but a few.

I’ve also got some very cool location weddings to look forward to, including St Andrew’s in Scotland, Tuscany in Italy and New York in the USA! You’ll get to see and hear all about those!!!

So have a fantastic Christmas and New Year and I’ll see you in 2010!!!

All the best,


Categories: Personal