Updates from the life of a busy photographer

Another amazing wedding show at Old Thorns

Yesterday saw us rock another amazing wedding show at Old Thorns #secondhome with it being the biggest one yet- 80 exhibitors and 1000 brides through the door!!!!  Crazy times!!!!

We had current clients rock up and say hi also as they continued their journey of wedding planning, and a couple of friends surprise hi as they check out Old Thorns as their wedding venue; always lovely to see and say hi again.

Cuppa is calling and I have a stack of emails to ping out now… I’ll try harder next time to write something worth reading- this one is proper sh*t 🙂

Throw a wedding in your back garden

Finchdean in Hampshire is your typical quiet English country village, with not a lot happening usually, save for the occasional meat raffle at the local pub (full of the locals) and gangs of lycra-clad cyclists whizzing past dog walkers and tractors pulling out of fields- yup that’s about all that happens in Finchdean. 


Yesterday was a different story though… Olly grew up in Finchdean and returned a few years ago to live in the old family home. The entire village was in outcry, “What’s this? A young couple moving into the village, parking their modern cars everywhere, using our local pub? Outrageous, something must be done!” 


You see, Olly owns a Mercedes sales/servicing business and Pauline owns a chauffeur business so between the pair of them, the village has Mercedes parked everywhere. Their solution to keep the locals happy was to offer them all wicked deals on Mercs & servicing, so the Mercedes population grew but the locals were now happy with the ‘villagers rates’ Olly offered- double whammy boom all sorted now! 


So why was yesterday different? Well, the village pub has a rather large rear garden area so the plan was to throw an outdoor rustic wedding and invite the village, so they didn’t complain about the noise especially with a band playing all evening! Not that many of them dug a Madness tribute band I’d imagine, oh well, the thought was there, and it worked anyway so who cares haha… 


Full day for us so the usual morning preps of both of them but it was awesome as we parked up in the village and only had to walk a few steps between where Olly was getting ready, where Pauline was getting ready and the pub over the road. Fantastic! 


They had decorated the pub garden amazingly- like seriously amazing! We had a huge marquee, hay bales everywhere, oil drums painted up in wedding colours, lights, candles, banners, everywhere- it looked amazing. Thankfully we had glorious sunshine yesterday as it’s raining today and yesterday would have been a very different story indeed if it had rained. 


But we had glorious sunshine so the outdoor ceremony was awesome with everyone sitting on hay bales in a circles around them, and drinks flowed all afternoon as guests enjoyed the gorgeous weather and setting, the hog roast sit down meal with the marquee sides folded up gave a wonderful outdoor vibe, kids hurling themselves around on the bouncy castle, the south facing garden sunshine all day, entertainment in the evening, all contributed to an amazing day that is up there on our favourites list. Right on guys, right on…7

An Old Thorns wedding, again again again!

Holy s**t I clocked up some furious miles yesterday for Lee & Fiona’s wedding at Old Thorns! That was manic!! Fiona was at her parent’s home on Hayling Island and Lee was at Old Thorns… that’s 24miles in between and getting on/off Hayling and to the A3 to add in! Oh f*****g wonderful and it’s summer which means Hayling could be busy with it’s one single lane road on/off the island… aaarrrggghhh… oh well it’s what we do for or wonderful clientele, just keep smiling Such and thankfully you have a Sarah to shoot the Bridal stuff!!! 


Hayling is only a 10min drive in clear traffic so we headed out early anyway as the road can get congested in summer, especially on a weekend and arrived 10mins later… ahh this is a good sign. I hung about for a bit shooting the details whilst Sarah shot the hair and makeup and chatted to our supplier friends Annette (hair) and Della (makeup) who we’ve known for years. I left Sarah at the social gathering and headed off for my first trip to OT to go shoot Lee and his Groomsmen. Oh my it was a warm one already, ”today is going to be another sweatfest for me!” I thought to myself as I blasted myself with the air-con. 


Lee had Groomsmen details for me to shoot as well as the getting ready stuff which I always dig and it’s kool to catch both sides of the morning story for the couple to have as memories. Nailed it and then I checked my watch and, “oh **** I need to hustle it back to Hayling Island to pick Sarah up, fingers crossed the traffic is okay!!!” I had to get back to Hayling to grab Sarah and then race back up to OT before Fiona walked down the aisle!!!! And it was a seriously hot summers day and the logistics brain frazzling sweat inducing frenzy had me in its grip. Air-con FTW!!!!! 


Made it before the Bridal party had left home… phew!!! 


And back up to OT!!! 


Hampshire Suite. Windows. Nicely lit ceremony room. Loads of naturals after the ceremony outside in the sunshine. Formals outside, oh the difference to the last wedding we shot here in the rain. Drag the couple into a buggy to kick them around a golf course and shoot them in the trees. Nothing more dull than plonking (damn that’s a good word, not used that in years!) a couple in the middle of a fairway, course fountain spraying water in the background… urgh… so lazy, shoot them in the trees it is then and it’s shade for us so we minimise sweating as much as possible, oh and the harsh sunshine of course! 


Wedding Breakfast time. Sit down rest for us. Neeeeded. Hydrate loads. Neeeeded. 


We carried on shooting naturals into the evening, another session with them in the evening, the cake, the dancing, the cigars, nailed the lot, damn we shoot a full story. Memories man, that’s what we shoot, and boy did we shoot a lot today. Home time, the A3 was calling. Until the next wedding day story… peace… 



Hello again Old Thorns

Oh hello again Old Thorns, you are such the #secondhome to us, but it’s OK, we totally dig shooting you!

Phew.. back to #teamwork shooting with Sarah again for Saturday’s wedding of James and Emma up at our fave Old Thorns- another chilled one as they were both up there, so no crazy driving needed by me to cover 2x prep. locations… “relax Such, no logistics to sweat over!”

It did absolutely p*ss down with rain most of the day but they were a kool couple who worked with us and even bought wellies to tromp about outside and we always carry umbrellas so all was groovy. We nailed it… of course! That’s because we know what we’re doing and are #weddingexperts, so no panicking by us as we’re the absolute b*****ks and we damn well know what we’re doing.

Did I mention how f***ing awesome we are and how calm and collected we are when faced with photographic obstacles? No? Well, we are f***ing awesome… 🙂

P.S. I only profane here at CSiHQ and not at a wedding, I’ve already told ya we’re complete professionals at this shizzle…

P.P.S. Usual follow up ‘proper’ blog will appear soon with accompanying imagery.. 10-4


A rainy wedding day is okay, well it is at Old Thorns anyway

I always let out a slight groan when I see a rainy forecast for a wedding day, not because a wedding day is ruined by rain, it just limits what we can do outdoors and the size of formal groups if they’ve been requested. Luckily yesterdays wedding was held at Old Thorns (yup there again haha) so it’s never a deal breaker as OT has a multitude of spaces we can use, and we were lucky anyway as we managed to get out for a short while with the couple yesterday so all was groovy. 


James & Emma had a Hampshire Suite wedding so 60 guests is a relaxed number to work with which is always kool when most of the day is spent indoors, but let’s rewind back to the beginning… 


An all-day jobbie, so a standard early morning blast up the A3 to catch Emma doing all her Bridal prep stuff, and we rocked up to a very chilled room (again… nice!) so we had plenty of time to shoot details and hair/makeup stuff in a relaxed way. Emma has a wedding details business and (apart from the dresses/shoes/cake obviously) made everything herself, like everything!! I also had time to wander along to see James and his Groomsmen getting ready whilst Sarah continued chilling with the girls. 


A Hampshire Suite wedding also has the benefit of a bright ceremony room with a wall of windows letting in that much needed light to give us a (usually) easy time with exposures, so we nailed that and on to shooting naturals as all the guests descended upon James and Emma post-ceremony to hug and congratulate the freshly married pair. 


The showers were intermittent so we nailed a mixture of formal groups inside and outside, “quick outside you lot, it’s not raining, oh crap, back inside it’s started again” groups can be like herding cats sometimes. After the fun of the formals we released everyone to sit down and continue their drinking and chatting awaiting the Wedding Breakfast being served. We’d looked at the weather report and took a mad calculated ‘risk’ and decided to leave the couple portraits until after the meal, oh the joys of a July wedding with longer daylight hours. 


James and Emma took our advice and brought alternative footwear with them in case we managed to get outdoors (rainy week prior) but they surprised us with matching wellington boots which they kept on for the entire outdoor portrait shoot- they totally got the ‘it is the memories of whatever happens on your day’ ethos we totally rant about haha… groovy! 


We even scored a couple more formals in the early eve (thank you July and your daylight hours) along with those staple wedding things of cake and dancing and drunkenness. 


Well, what a day… a fun day and getting outside in wellies was an absolute bonus so well happy with that, scoooooore…. 

Back to Skylark again for another wedding

Back to Skylark again for another wedding and another solo shoot by me on Saturday, third time this year!!!!!  One has gotten v.much used to having Sarah shooting alongside me, we make a great team, so it’s odd when I solo shoot these days, but once I get stuck in I just power through and the before I know it, the day is over for me, 12hrs have past and I’m bloody knackered!

Saturday saw me shoot Simon & Anna’s wedding day at Skylark and it was such a chilled day! Bridal preps started later than usual, Groomsman preps were not required and formals required only a handful of shots- the rest was relaxed and easy going memories of the day… nice… I’ll obviously follow up with a proper blog with captured images, but the kettle is calling me and I have a stack of admin. to do so adios for now and catch ya later… 🙂

We’re back at Skylark for another wedding

Been a while since last shooting a wedding at Skylark, and the last time here was me shooting solo and yesterday saw me yet again shooting a wedding solo at Skylark. Luckily I only had Bridal preps to shoot as Simon the Groom was looking after their infant son in the morning so Grooms preps weren’t really happening, which left me shooting Anna the Bride in a relaxed’n’easy environment with zero logistics to fill my head. Excellent start to a day! 


Wickham was my destination to catch Anna doing her thing in one of the garden rooms at The Old House in Wickham Square. Shot here a few times and it never fails to disappoint. I walked into a wonderfully calm room with just Anna and her Bridesmaid, chilling with a couple of bottles of fizz. Time to shoot details in peace outside before they got stuck into hair and makeup. It was a welcome change to be able to shoot all the details in one go whilst they sat on the sofa chatting and drinking, rather than the usual frenetic back’n’forth trying not to miss anything with multiple things going on at once. This was bliss! 


So that was easy! Details sorted, hair and makeup sorted, and in the car for a cruise to Skylark to catch Simon and his Groomsmen prior to their blessing in the barn. The barn at Skylark is stunning inside and a full floor to ceiling glass panel/doors to one side bath the interior in wonderful natural light which makes for awesome natural ceremony shots. 


With that nailed also, time for a few naturals outside, a few formals and a quick session with Simon & Anna before they headed inside for a drinks reception and time to chill out whilst I sneaked off to shoot their room details ahead of them sitting down. 


After the speeches, I took them off for another quick portrait session on the golf course close by, which also gave them a break together away from the crowds and hecticness of wedding chatter, always worth doing as weddings can be full-on for a bride and groom so chill time has to be factored in! 


Cake and dancing and drinking was the order of the remaining hours with a quickie night shoot with the pair of them before I left for the drive home. Great day, relaxed pace, kool stuff shot, happy with that… 


Another fantastic wedding day at Old Thorns again

Another sweaty fantastic wedding day at Old Thorns again last weekend, full of sweat fun and laughs and most excellent images captured for Lewis & Becky among the myriad of sweaty awesome memories we captured whilst sweating smiling with them. I’ve tried a couple of new ideas lately and nailed them both, so looking forward to trying them out again at tomorrow’s wedding at Skylark

The transitions between church and Old Thorns at the weekend was air-con heaven as the rest of the day was a full-on sweat-fest… have I mentioned sweating all day? A two shirt sweat-fest? Well it was!

A fantastic day none-the-less and a proper blog will follow soon with some kool imagery. At least you won’t be able to see my ridiculous sweating!!

Right, I best go charge the batteries and sort the kit out ready for tomorrow’s wedding. And have another coffee. TTFN…  🙂

Another scorcher wedding at Old Thorns


Ye’gads, yesterdays wedding at Old Thorns was another double-shirt day! It was an epic day fo’sho, full of kool stuff shot and general smiles and awesomeness but oh my did I leak! It was a two-venue wedding but luckily all local so not much driving around, but it still kicks my brain into over-drive thinking logistics on-the-fly. 


Anyway, me sweating aside, and who wants to hear about that anyway, it’s not pretty, what about the damn wedding Such… oh yes, the wedding! Becky was getting ready at Old Thorns, so an early morning blast up the A3 to go shoot those wonderful bridal prep. moments and of course all the details’n’stuff and as usual we enter a room in full-swing with hair being done over there, make up happening in that corner, stuff spread about the room, y’know the story here. So Sarah and I got down to it (no, not like that y’filthy animal) shooting the chaos and after I’d shot Becky’s details (dress, shoes, jewellery etc.) I buggered off to go shoot the Groom preps. at their home which, thankfully, was only a ‘spirited’ 5min drive up the road toward Liphook. Time for a blast of air-con… nice… after catching Lewis and his Groomsmen getting ready and all looking fly, I followed them to the pub with yet more spirited driving (and air-con) down twisty roads to grab a couple Groomsmen shots and to quickly scout the church location and more importantly where to park. Sorted. Back in the car for a ‘very spirited’ drive back to Old Thorns with more air-con blasting, jeez I’d really sprung a leak, damn this driving and logistic thinking! Back at Old Thorns in time to help Sarah with a few final touches of the Bridal preps and then back in the car for more air-con and ‘spirited’ driving (Sarah just looks at her phone instead of the road when we have timings like this haha) to get to the church and set up stuff ahead of the girls arriving. 


The Bridesmaids were all chauffeured in Becky’s Dad’s Cosworth (nice to see the garage queen out for a change) followed closely by Becky and her Dad in a beautiful vintage Rolls, which is always nice to see, and especially for Lewis later on as the dude was into his cars and used to work at the Rolls Royce factory in Chichester. 


Church stuff as normal, a few formals outside afterwards and then a most welcome drive with air-con back to Old Thorns ahead of everyone (oh the benefits of parking scouting prior) so we could park up in the shade on the driveway to OT for a quick snack/drink break whilst we waited for the Rolls. I knew a great spot perfect for shooting Lewis & Becky with the Rolls, which had to be done of course, especially with Lewis’ love for cars (he now works for McLaren!) 


So with that lil’epic session nailed (with fantastic results by the way haha) t’was time to park up for the day finally! Sarah trundled off to shoot the guest naturals in the Hampshire Suite along with the room details whilst I dragged them around the golf course for some kool-ass couple stuff. 


Time for a rest whilst they scoffed. Nice. 


The wonderful thing about the Hampshire Suite is its location, with views over the 18th and more importantly it’s orientated to catch a sunset too if no clouds. Sometimes it can be a struggle dragging a couple away from their guests mid-conversation if we see a sunset opportunity but we managed to pry them away in time to catch the final glow of a setting sun peering through the clouds and then whilst we had them there thought we’d try a new idea (not new to the world of wedding photography, but something I’d not tried before) not as easy as it looks obviously but being the pros we are, we managed it ok. 


Cake, dancing, sorted. Home time. Blimey, what a day- a completely fabulous day with new stuff done, other stuff captured most excellently and general all-round awesomeness. Today is a day of rehydration haha…

It’s the truth, we do put in way more effort than any other photographer we know!

Is it just me that feels wiped out on a Monday? Weddings never used to wear me out like this, I put it down to the warm weather!

Friday’s wedding was a blast and a standard loooooong day for us, so maybe it’s how much effort and concentration we put into our full days that is the cause of me being so wiped out after. Hand on heart, we put in way more effort than any other photographers we know- we seriously do! More effort with our clients and their guests to keep them relaxed and not make the photography a chore (even the formals!) and we put in longer days too than the rest of them, it all adds up y’know and it’s not easy but this is what makes us unique to the others. I really should shout more about this but I’m never one to self-promote like that, we’ll let out testimonials/recommendations do the talking.

There’ll be a future blog arriving soon with some kool imagery from Friday’s wedding, so that’s it for today as I’m in dire need for caffeine so off to pop the kettle on… TTFN 🙂 x