My first wedding of 2013 was Rachel & Gavin’s at Redcoats Farmhouse Hotel near Hitchin. They had a cosy and intimate ceremony infront of a roaring log fire in the hotel’s Oak Room.
After the ceremony the formal shots were done in the Old Kitchen which gave me a chance to try out my new Lastolite softbox, which worked a treat.
This was also the first time I included a wedding book design as part of the package. Nothing fancy, just a simple standard landscape photo book from blurb.com. Some sample pages are included in a slideshow below.
The Blurb.com book:
Saturday March 2nd and time for my first pre-wedding shoot of 2013. Donna and Rich chose the East Carlton Country Park outside Corby for their location, an inspired choice. There were lots of great spots to photograph in and with clear blues skies and bright sunshine we ended up with some lovely shots.
I bought a bike last week and after a tough meeting in the office I decided to vent frustration with the new bike on the muddy trails of the Chilterns. It was a great ride in perfect weather, if a little challenging for someone who hasn’t sat on a bike in anger for more than a few years.
At one point on my route I crossed a bridge over the A505 between Hitchin and Luton that had a great view in both directions and it gave me an idea for a photo. I headed back to the bridge a few days later in good time for sunset. It was freezing and it took a while before the rush hour traffic started to come through, but it was worth it.
And here is the result. A 30-second exposure at f22 with a graduated ND filter on the sky.
Before seeing the Olympic Final, I had never seen a live game of volleyball. It was something we played in school and was never something to get too excited about.
However, after seeing this I am converted. Admittedly, you won’t always get the best two teams in the world, the USA and Brazil, playing every day, but the excitement and drama of the match was very compelling. After losing the opening set quite decisively, the Brazilians fought back to win 3-1 with some amazing rallies and the support of a very loud and raucous group of fans.
If this small example is anything to go by, Rio 2016 will be one hell of a party.
On our way to the game, we stopped off at Kiwi House, one of the Nation Hospitality Houses that sprung up over London during the games. Unfortunately, the outdoor barbecue area it was famous for was closed after a fire burnt the whole lot down.
It seems a long time now since the London 2012 Olympics finished. They were a definite highlight of the year and I was lucky enough to get hold of some last-minute tickets to see some live action.
The first thing we got to see was the Women’s Basketball semi-final between the USA and Australia at the North Greenwich Arene (aka The O2). The atmosphere was everything we had come to expect for an Olympic event.
We watched the game from the comfort of one of the arena’s many suites and saw a close first half, before the USA dominated the second to win convincingly.
We took a river ferry home past the skyscrapers of Canary Wharf and the Royal Naval College at Greenwich, venue for the Equestrian events, before passing under Tower Bridge at sunset.
In October we celebrated my in-laws’ Golden Wedding anniversary with a party at the family’s spiritual home, South Herts Golf Club.
After a delicious dinner, there was the obligatory 60s disco featuring the couple’s favourite songs from their youth. Even the youngest grandchildren joined in the dancing.
Naturally I took my camera and a few lights to take a few pics and some family portraits, and got plenty of assistance from Maddie and Ruby-Grace who were more than happy to take a few snaps and help me with setting up the lights.
Here is a selection of photos from the evening.
Another day, another Olympic event to watch on the streets of London. This time the Women’s triathlon around Hyde Park. Something special is going on in London with these Olympics and it is great that we can get so close to the action at some of the events for free.
For Meredith & Chris’s engagement shoot we took advantage of the area around their pretty village of Radwell. There was lots of variety of locations with woods, cornfields, meadows and farm yards, as well as their lovely garden, massive kitchen and living room.
Meredith & Chris will be getting married at Offley Place, Great Offley, and I’m really looking forward to seeing Meredith’s hand-made dress and the car Chris is hurriedly fixing in time to drive Meredith to the wedding.
Wednesday 1 August saw the Cycling Time Trial speed through South West London and it was a great chance to get close to the Olympic action.
The atmosphere on course was just amazing and mostly the weather was perfect, and to top it all off Bradley Wiggins romped home to win gold and Chris Froome won broze for Team GB.
With only 19 days to the start of the Olympics in London, the Torch relay visited Letchworth, just up the road from Hitchin.
Despite the horrible weather, there was a big crowd out and about to catch their glimpse of the Torch.