It's been a crazy, weird and unsettling few months. Life has been turned upside down and my heart goes out to those couples that have had to postpone their wedding day this year.
I am proud of my little business built entirely on my own and it's personally devastating to not be able to shoot weddings or family sessions for months, but I am fit, healthy and resilient.
We have all been affected by the virus in so many different ways. It's butterfly effect is massive and on-going, but it's so important to stay safe, live in the moment, appreciate each day as it comes and be as kind as you can.
With wedding season on hold, I hoped to use this time to edit my photographs from my recent trip to India, a trip I realise I was so lucky to go and come back from. I wanted to get blogging, update my website and generally look back, reflect and see how far I have come, but since taking on a temporary job in my local supermarket working nights, I'm adjusting to my own new slightly upside down world, not staying home as many of us are. In the sunny days we've been lucky enough to have recently, in between my shifts I've needed some vitamin D, and also realised how important it has been for me take a bit of time for some self-care. I have wondered the empty streets of Bristol alone with my camera, reminding me how much I love my city and what I do (I hope to share some of these images soon).
I'm writing this on a rainy day, I quite like the odd rainy day; rain freshens everything up, makes me sit still (a little) and gets me blogging. Today I've been taking a bit of time to look back at a wonderful little style shoot I organised this time last year at South Devon's stunning new venue, Sturtlebury Barn where my sister got married in 2018. Owners of the barn Rich and Elaine welcomed me back last spring and I had my own style shoot, which I decided to put together with an amazing team to talented ladies.
Style shoots are oh so very different to a usual wedding day, but a chance to create specific images, be the perfectionist I am, work with wonderful like minded creatives and share and spark ideas off each other. Working together, the aim was to highlight our skills showing off beautiful wedding dresses, our gorgeous inside and out model Abi and this stunning Devon venue.
With only a few emails sent back and forth sharing photos of the barn and my ideas, this wonderful team where the backbone in making my vision come alive. Stephanie dyed and styled model Abi's light pastel pink hair which I adored. Shelley created fabulous floristry, the most stunning bouquets and a delicate boho style floral headpiece. Make up artist Nic gave Abi a natural and flawless look complimenting the perfectly fitting elegant dresses, lent to us from Danielle at Rock the Frock Bridal, we where all set.
I'm a fan of keeping things simple, our overall look was one of modern minimalism and subtle detail allowing the venues and it's beauty natural surroundings to shine. Spoilt for choice, the Barn effortlessly provided us with a multitude of beautiful backdrops. Overlooking the River Avon, the barn is nestled in a valley with jaw-dropping views amongst winding country lanes, blossom trees and rolling fields. I hadn't planned many shots inside but to my delight the barns contemporary and rustic interior gave plenty of inspiration and was the perfect contrast to the green outdoors.
Shelley and Nic aka Courtney & Hutch team up as super stylists; here they brought the wedding decorations and little details together for me inside the barn. The barns long banquet tables where styled with gold crockery, patterned tableware and luxe accessories, an art deco edge with a glamorous twist. My talented friend Kate also illustrated floral-inspired stationary, stone place names, and iced shortbread favours delicately hand drawn on with edible pen, so pretty and unique.
The day of our shoot was grey and rainy, you know... "That fine rain that soaks you through. It's spitting! it's spitting" (Pete Kay) Once we got started, brollies at the ready, I quickly remembered how beautiful flat light is on a overcast day and so flattering, something always worth reminding myself and others. My favourite of our images has to be Abi sitting pretty on a vintage coral armchair discovered by Nic. Again, an unplanned shot, I love that lane spiralling up and the sheep you can just make out in the background, so gloriously green, so Devon. We had a giggle shooting this with us all and the chair having to quickly get in the hedge when cars came by.
Only my third style shoot, I loved it and learnt so much. Please see the very bottom of the blog for a link to so a small feature we had in Wed Magazine last year.
Next year I'd love to shoot another style photo shoot in complete contrast in my home city Bristol, so please get in touch if you are a Bristol venue or wedding supplier and would like to be apart of a relaxed and fun wedding styled shoot.
Stay safe and keep smiling :)
p.s ..... 2021 weddings are going to be epic!xx
Feature in Wed Magazine: https://www.wedmagazine.co.uk/country-weddings-devon.html
Venue - Sturtlebury Barn
Styling - Courtney & Hutch
Flowers - Shelley Hutcheon, Oakenham
Make-up - Nic Courtney
Model - Abigail Read
Hair - Stephanie Davis
Stationary - Kate Pennington-Wilson, Little Penn Illustration