Sian and Simons Wedding

Well I have been a little slack at getting back to the blogging since my return from the States but on Saturday 5th April I had the fantastic pleasure of shooting the wedding of Sian and Simon. This was my 2nd wedding of the year and was held at The Beggars Reach, Burton, Pembrokeshire. The Beggars is an amazing wedding venue, the owners William and Gillian attend to every detail personally and the day went as smooth as a Swiss Watch. I should also point out from a photographers point of view I have never been so well looked after at any venue – 10/10 for these guys – Thanks.



This wedding has been on my books for about 18 months and Sian opted coverage of not only the wedding and the reception but of herself getting ready before hand or bridal prep (bridal preparation) I think I will post up some of those images in a post by itself as there are SO MANY great bridal prep pics that you would be here for hours looking at them all.

Since its pretty late I have selected just a few photos from Sian & Simons day (and because they have not seen them yet, I dont want to spoil the surprise)  The weather was pretty kind to the happy couple and we managed to get some nice shots outside including the confetti shot.


Below are a couple more shots from the day.






Sian and Simon were a great couple to work with and have helped produce some great photos, one of which will be going into my portfolio collection on the website.  I think it could be my favorite from the day but with 700 pics to look through and having worked all day, I will reserve judgment until tomorrow !

Anyway it just leaves me to say congratulations to Sian and Simon and leave you with my favorite pic.

Bye for now



gurlywundaApril 19, 2008 - 12:10 pm

If these were my wedding photos I would over the moon with them.

I am Back !

Hello there,

Well I am back! – And what a bumpy landing back in the UK, I flew in Wednesday during the very very high winds. Not being a good flyer at the best of time, all I can say is this was the most frightening flight I have been on. The winds were so bad and the flight so bumpy that we could not land in Birmingham (we tried!) We got diverted to Gatwick L after 2 ½ hours however the winds died down enough to let us as the captain said “try to make a landing at Birmingham” – lucky for me we made it.

Anyway my reason for popping over the States was to visit my best man (my wedding) and my best friend Warren. Unfortunately Warren’s Girlfriend passed away the week before, Lisa was very ill, this was expected but just not this soon, I never got to say goodbye in person as I was going out to say my goodbye’s in a few weeks time. I did not go for the actually Funeral but went over to keep my friend company after all the family had returned home. Warren as usual was the most gracious host and came home feeling he had done a better job of looking after me than I did for him.

While I was away Nikki (my bride) kept me up to date with Joshua’s daily activities and sent over some fantastic photos to keep my daily ‘FIX’ satisfied.

This is my favourite from the photos Nikki sent to me, it’s JD in my chair, looking after the office phone whilst I was away.

The value of photos is priceless to me, because they act as triggers to memories and memories remind me of the people I have loved, had fun with, lost, and enjoyed good times with, shared bad times with and all the other moments that have made up my life so far.

This photo will always remind me of Lisa, my friend Warren, Joshua, my darling wife and that horrible flight back.

I can’t wait to return to New Jersey to visit my friend but will miss Lisa as she was such a great character.



Joahua on the swing……….

Hi there,

I have to pop over to New Jersey USA for 8 days, so no news posts for the next week or so. Since today was Mothers day I asked Nikki what she would like, a new photo of Joshua was the reply.

Since I will my my honey and my boy while I am away, I thought why not ?

We went to Scolton Manor just outside of Haverfordwest on the Cardigan Road.

Nikki had gone there for the first time yesterday with Gail one of her “Boobie Group” mommy friends and it was Joshua’s first experience of sitting in a swing, and guess what – HE LOVED IT!

Shooting photos like these is pretty simple, you only need 4 things.

1. A baby or toddler
2. A park or nice setting
3 An overcast day – created nice LARGE LIGHT SOURCE – more about this later
4 A camera

Thats it, it really is that simple.


In the shot above, it may look like JD (Joshua David) is not swinging but this was taken during mid swing. What I did was choose a focus point, manually focused on that point and then every time JD came into the area I had Pre-Focused on, snapped a photo. I took about 15 shots in total to get this one, I actually got about 5 or 6 I really liked, but this is one of my favorites.

Here are a few more from the swing – another great tip here is to shoot from a kids point of view not from an adults – what that means is I positioned myself at about the same hight as JD when the swing was at its mid or resting point. That way you are not looking down on the subject, the most common mistake people make when shooting kids.






Earlier I said I used a large light source, this is what I was talking about. The way to think of light is to actually think about shadows. Unless your actually looking for very high contrasts in your images or are shooting something you want strong direct light, the “Flatter” or “broader” the light source the better. If you think about a bright sunny day with no clouds this would actually be a very small light source think of a pin prick of light, with nothing to soften or make it spread out (flatten or broaden) the light you get strong shadows and people have to squint etc. On an overcast day clouds smooth out the suns light to create an even, shadowless source of light, hence the whole sky become your light source or become a large light source. This is why fashion photographers mainly use big soft boxes, its like having your own clouds in a box to control and soften the light.

If Today had been a sunny day I would have taken a big white umbrella or a big reflector to hold over JD and put him into shadow – more on that in another post. I could have also shot him under a tree canopy that dappled the sunlight or….Yes your guessed it “softened it”

Just before the last few pics, let me just say this, if you notice all of these photos are what photographers call “Portrait” – We either talk in terms of “Portrait” or “View / Landscape”. One of the BIGGEST mistakes I see people make with there point and shoot camera’s is that they ALWAYS hold it so as to take a “View” or “landscape” image – If I had done this with these, there would have been so much wasted space around JD that he would be really small in the frame. Try turning your camera 90 Degrees and take photos upright of subjects that are upright – they look much better.

So you now know all you need to shoot shots like these – ooops I forgot.

I set the camera totally manually for these photo’s what that means is that I set the Fstop and the shutter speed and the ISO myself. I dont generally carry a light meter with me unless I am working in the studio or at a wedding so what I did was take a meter reading off the grass. The grass is generally a really good thing to meter off as its about a MID tone – more in another post about this later. I knew I wanted to shoot at F5.6 so put my camera into Aperture Priority, Centre weightted Metering and pointed it at the ground – the reading was 320/s at ISO400. I wanted to get a 500th/s so when up to ISO 640 to get the setting I wanted. I took a couple of test shots and looked at the Histogram and liked what I saw – NEVER trust 100 % just looking at the picture on your screen if you have a histogram – check it.

That was it, it was bang on the money, all the shots above and below were shot using

ISO 640
Manual Exposure
500th/Second @ F5.6

Happy shooting, hope this helps,

Here are the rest of the photos from today.








jvaughanMarch 14, 2008 - 3:47 am

Joshua is such a cute Kid…he is precious.

See you guys soon,

Laurie’s portrait shoot – Pembrokeshire

A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of shooting Laurie, the winner of Pembrokeshire Idol 2007. The shoot was going to take place in and around Swansea however for reasons beyond her control Laurie arrived a little late and that ended the chance of Swansea.

We decided to shoot for a little while in and around Haverfordwest and Newgale (beach location) however it was a very cold and windy day. They say nothing stops a professional and Laurie was a trooper to the very end, she ended up with freezing cold, wet feet as her boots got soaked ! – Then she had to walk through Haverfordwest town half naked on a busy Friday night – Lucky for me we had Wayne to act as her bodyguard 🙂

Well we really just shot a few pics at a few locations having decided that we would reschedule for Swansea a little later in the month.

Here are a few pictures from the day – hope you enjoy.






Well lets see how many of you spot my mistake ?

If you watch both of the slide shows, you will see that I have included the same venue photo in each slide show.   There is a reason for that, and the reason is the albums have been created as show albums to test and practice with the software.

The software that creates the slide show only runs on a PC and I generally work on an Apple Mac, when I was putting together Katie and Simons Slideshow, I had pulled a DVD out of the fire safe, The disk I had pulled out did not have the venue photos on it, these were on another disk.  Because I wanted to finish the slideshow today I just snagged the venue shot from Zena and Bens wedding.

Naturally in the next few days I will grab the disk and redo the slideshow over.

Hope you forgive me