Award Winning Boudoir Photography

Hello there, very quick post form me tonight,

As you may well know I am a member of The International Professionals Photographers Network – which is a network of professional wedding, portrait and commercial photographers from around the world.  Each month the IPPN hosts a monthly image competition in which you are encouraged to submit photographs to be judged by an anonymous  panel taken from the entire membership.

I am very please to say that this month I have been awarded a Silver Award for this photo which came from a recent boudoir photo shoot.

Many thanks to Brook for letting me use this image.

Click here to view my boudoir photography web page

For photographers out there, check out the IPPN online at 

Photo of the Week February 5th 2012

Hey there,

For this weeks Photo of the Week I am being a little bit self indulgent.  On Sunday I met up with Hannah and Dave at the studio to go thru their photo selection for their album.  Hannah and Dave live ‘Up North’ well Leeds to be exact so getting together when I have a free weekend and when they are visiting took some working out, but we eventually made it, as it happens it was after the snowiest day of the year – so at one point it was touch and go.

As we sat viewing their wedding photos I kept saying  OOOOH, that one, thats going to be my photo of the week – I must have said it a good 1/2 a dozen times, the photos brought back some great memories.  I actuallly shed a tear at one point when we viewed the final selection of photos they wanted in the album.

quite possibly my favorite wedding of 2011 Hannah and Dave had what I called something of an Alice in Wonderland Wedding theme

below the photos is a link to their wedding blog story  – which if you have not seen it is worth viewing,  some of the details Hannah put into her big day took over a year to pull together.

Hannan also let me know (knowing how much I LOVE Ian Stuart Wedding Dresses) that hers had gone to a very good and deserving home – We talked about her dress for a good while and its nice to know it will be making another brides look as stunning as beautiful as Hannah did, and will be appreciated and loved for a second time !

Anyway, here you go

If I had to pick one it would be this one.

beautiful wedding photography

Although this shot looks simple enough, it actually took some getting,  It was shot about an hour after sunset so was pretty dark outside, it was a longer shutter exposure to bring in the sky and detail and the couple are being lit by a 500 watt portable studio flash off to camera right inside a deep octabox to create the soft fall off – it was something like 1/10th of a second F8 ISO 400 Shot on a Nikon D3 with the Nikon 24-70mm   –  Lighting provided by the Strobeam EID500  This was taken just before the first dance.

Okay, I have to include this photo as well,

This photo again looks simple enough, but I wanted to include the background which you can see is simply a stunning view from Hannah’s mum’s Living room deck.  The sun is actually off to camera left, if you look at Hannah’s right (camera left) shoulder you will notice what we call Rim Lighting – thats the halo looking light down her arm and the back of the dress – this is the sun, and it was pretty strong.  This means that Hannah was standing with her face and front of her dress totally in the shadow and strong shadow – just look at the front of the flower pot on the floor.  I used 2 X Nikon SB800 flash’s on a lighting pole being shot thru a shoot through umbrella – it was very close to her, its just about an inch out of shot – the two flash units were at full power.

There are many reasons I LOVE this photos, 1 is that its of a very happy looking bride, 2 its a very happy looking bride in beautiful Ian Stuart wedding dress and 3, its a beautiful bride in a stunning dress with an amazing background

The trick to this photo is not bringing Hannan out so she looks nice and softly lit, it was balancing the background light as I wanted the sky included with the foreground and the rim – I had to use manual flash and then adjust on the aperture to make it all work.  I also had to dip into high speed sync to pull that off – the Technicals are Shot at ISO 200, 640th of a second at F8 – Nikon D3 Nikon 24-70mm

The last shot is one that everyone who comes to the studio just LOVE’s – It totally sums up the day

Malvern wedding photography

This is simply a beautiful candid capture

One of the things I love about this shot is it really shows what you can do just by going back to the basics – This photo was taken using a Nikon D300 camera and the Nikon 70-200 VR2  It was shot totally with available light.  The photo was taken at 1/250th of a second at ISO 200 at F4.0  the lens was racked all the way out to 200mm.  Manual mode

What I LOVE about the Nikon D300 is the extra reach it gives being a crop body – I generally always use this body and lens for my candid’s outside – the files it puts out are silky smooth.

Technically it no competition winner due to cutting off the bottom of the hand but it was a case of a very quick candid grab which means that sometimes your have to worry less about perfection and concentrate more on the moment – I have this at the start of my slideshow I show people visiting the studio – EVERYONE comments on it.

Right I better run, stuff to do – but as promised if you want to see more of Hannah and Dave’s wedding click here –

hope you like,

ciao for now


Why I just love the Internet


Today I spent 30 minutes on Skype chatting with Tina and Rob – a couple whos wedding I shot back towards the tail end of last year.

I am very fortunate to shoot a lot of weddings for couples from all over the world, Tina and Rob come from Australia so I actually only met them for the first time the day of the wedding, I did Skype with them before hand however.

australian bride and groom getting married in the uk

Well we were catching up, chatting about the wedding and I wanted to thank them for my hotel room – this may seem like a strange thing to say, but Mrs P and I had to stop over for 2 nights for this wedding.

Tina and Rob got married at Bodelwyddan Castle North Wales – or a good 3 is hour drive from my studio.  As I cover the whole of the UK I often stay either 1 or 2 nights depending on location, distance and coverage the couple choose.  Since we were going to be there till late, we stopped over for 2 nights.

We understand that this is a cost the couple had planned for when choosing a photographers so are happy with to stay pretty much anywhere half way decent and Tina and Rob booked us into an eclectic bed and breakfast (we were going to be out early the day of the wedding and the next morning heading home asap so b&B’s work well)  We had no idea what to expect.

Well here is where we ended up stopping – as you can see its amazing !!!!!!

The Lounge IN OUR ROOM !!!!!

I do have some great shots of me in the bath tub, but will spare you them,

Anyway, I love the internet, it brings the other side of the world right into my studio !

Great catching up with the bride that gave me my favorite wedding dress photos from last year was a real treat.

This shot was taken the morning of the wedding – Tina was very gracious and let me loose with her dress – it has to be an Australian thing as most of my brides from down under expect me to do something special with the dress.

best ever wedding dress photo

Ciao for now, just sending big love to the land down under.



As today is the coldest day of the year so far, it did make me slightly envious to see rob strutting around in his short and a t-shirt


Photo of the Week 29th January 2012

I just love this photo, it was taken at Drumtochty Castle just south of Aberdeen, Scotland a couple of weeks back – from the wedding of Susie and Chris.

This is the kind of moment you prey for at a wedding, totally candid capture – but one that tells a GREAT story – just the kind of image I love to take for my couples.

Technically there is nothing amazing about this photo, there is no off camera flash (or on camera for that matter)  the only thing that I did to make it work was when I took this I was actually lying down on the ground – seconds before I had shot a floor to ceiling shot of the couple form the same vantage point (that photo was photo of the week a couple of weeks back – view it here)  then I noticed that this little lad started to look round and shuffle about a bit – Knowing my second shooter was covering the wedding, I decided to wait to see if I got anything worth while and didnt concentrate on Susie and Chris but kept all my attention on him.

Then all of a sudden, Tom (my 2nd) took a photo and the boy turned around and looked at him, totally missed me on the floor – I went snap, he saw me and the moment was gone – it was a case of a one shot capture – did I get it ??????? – Yes I am happy to say.

As you would have seen in previous posts about Susie and Chris’s wedding it was very very very very very dark in the church – Technical info following the pic.

Drumtochty church wedding photo

Nikon D3 – Nikon 70-200 VR2 @ 135mm – ISO 6400 – F2.8 – 1/20th Second – Handheld.  I have processed it with Lightroom 4 beta and have to say its much better at recovering shadow detail than LR3. – The black and white conversion was made with Nik Softwares Silver Efx Pro 2




Photo of the Week – January 22nd 2012

This weeks photo was actually taken yesterday at the totally amazing Blenheim Palace, I was there to shoot the engagement session of Hannah and Andy

The main house (if you can call the Palace a house) is stunning and a beautiful and reminds me of Downtown Abbey

We walked for what seems like miles and toured the lakes, woods, parkland and visited the main house albeit it was closed to the public for renovations.

Although the house was closed there were still a lot of tourists wondering around and the roadway between the main house gates and the rest of the estate was very busy, with careful use of photoshop and the timing of taking this photo, I was able to make it seem like the couple were all alone, well all alone with Merlin.

The editing of this photo took a good good while, its not as punchy, contrasty or saturated as a lot of my photography but I just love the feel of this image.

The sky is real, when we first arrived the sun was behind the Palace so we waited for the sun to move around and didn’t hurry.  Often there is nothing you can do about lighting when your battling with the sun so you just have to be patient and bide your time – if you do, you are often rewarded.

I know you cant see the couple but we have lots of those shots also, I often shoot my couple from behind and think they create an air of mystique  and tell a totally different story, one that you can only tell by body language etc.

Anyway,  for the photographers out there (Hannah included) here are the technicals

ISO400  1/320th sec  F5.0  Shady white balance – Nikon D3  70-200mm Lens @ 105mm  (I am about 75 feet away from the couple – barking out instructions)