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Showing posts from 2008

We Hope You Have a Great Christmas & New Year!

Well the year is finally coming to a close. It has been a great year for the business and we are really looking forward to the new year and all that we have planned. I can't wait to reveal some of our plans but as I don't want to jinx anything I am going to wait until everything is well and truly on its way.
Not a lot has happened over the past month as I have spent most of it just filling orders in time for Christmas. Its a great worry of mind that I might miss something vital before Christmas. I would hate to disapppoint anyone. As far as I am aware at this moment in time I haven't let any one down.
Well here is our annual Christmas photo in front of the tree. Its a photo of my two step children and my daughter. As you can imagine, they are so fed up of having their photo taken. I try now to limit it to a couple of times a year but even then they need to be bribed.

Anyway, we hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and we very much look forward to seeing you in the new y…

And One More Gold for the Year!

I've been given another gold in the SWPP Monthly competition. So that gives me a total of 4 images that will go forward into the annual competition in January at the SWPP Convention in London. The competition is fierce so I'm not holding my breath as typically it takes a truly spectacular image to win one of the annual categories.
But I am already getting geared up for new images I can create in hopes of winning an annual award next year. I can only imagine the feeling of winning one of these, which must be fantastic. Last year I saw one of my images appear in the shortlist for Traditional Portraiture and knowing that I was in the top 4 was enough to leave me elated for the remainder of the evening and probably most of the following week. The high I would be on after actually winning one of these awards would surely last well into spring if I ever do someday receive this honour.
I have great plans for next year so one can only hope.
Here are the other 3 gold winners for this y…

Our Long Awaited Portrait Albums

I have been very excited about announcing this new product as portrait books and albums have always been something of great interest to myself. Ever since I can remember I have been creating personal albums and scrapbooks from my family snaps and now a whole new world of magazine style photo books has opened up, giving me endless possibilities both personally and professionally.

It has taken many months of sourcing an appropriate supplier of these books but we have finally decided on the one we feel provides the best quality with the most impressive results. So it is with great pleasure that I display these photos of my most recent creation.

Our books are more like coffee table books than portrait albums, making it even more impressive. They look equally as professional as any book purchased from a bookstore only they are comprised of very personal portraits.
Not only can our books include images but you are also welcome to submit to us any text that you would like included. This coul…

My First Clique Party with Boys and it was Great!

I was surprised when asked if it was okay to bring a few boys to one of our Clique sessions. I thought it was great but based on the experiences with my step daughter who seems to want nothing to do with boys I was not expecting to have this opportunity. But I am glad I did. It made it a totally different experience and the photos turned out great. In fact it has made me think that it may even be possible to have a party entirely for boys. Although I won't be suggesting this to my step son. I can just imagine the look on his face if I did. He prefers something a bit more on the adventurous side like rock climbing. But then again, he is rather sick of being stuck in front of the camera as he gets it a lot from me.
In this case though, these boys truly seemed to enjoy being in front of the camera. That made it so much more fun for me and so much easier. I think a couple of them have been practicing in front of the mirror before coming out. They seemed to know exactly how to smile (o…

My Work Experience by Zak Millard

My name is Zak Millard and I am 15 years old. For my two weeks work experience I chose to incorporate a passion of mine, photography.

Christina is a very competent photographer and a easy person to get on with, she is also patient which was good for me because I often forgot something or had to ask twice about an instruction.


My two weeks with Christina have been very helpful. Though I am a aspiring photographer there is much I have learnt, including:
Different lights and there uses.Different light set ups.Key photoshop skills.Exposure compensation.AV/TV settings.Composition.How to keep children's interest!One of the most useful things Christina has taught me is that of photo editing. Photography isn't all about taking the pictures though obviously this is important. The little tweaks made here and there make a lot of difference and in all honesty before Christina showed me these tweaks I would never have made them myself, so thank you Christina for opening up to me the massiv…

I Got Me a Gold

Nearly every month I enter an online competition with the SWPP (Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers). Each month nearly 2000 images are entered in various categories from photographers all over the world. They are judged by a highly qualified professional and given a score of either Bronze, Silver or Gold. All Gold winners are put forward into the annual competition where they have the chance to win Photographer of the Year for its category.
Well this month I was awarded a Gold in the Pet Category with the image below.

This isn't the first gold I have been awarded, just the first since I started my blog. If you wish to see my other gold images please visit my website and check out our awards section.
Click here to see my awards page
Hopefully I will have many more of these to show you in the future.

I have finally photographed some of our products

I have been meaning to do this for ages but as there was no pressing need for it I have been putting it off, saying 'I'll have to remember to do that next week'. Well with the kids back at school and a little more time on my hands I thought it was about time I finally did what I said I was going to. Although I still have more to do, at least now I have something to show you all so you can see a little of what you can get by coming to us for your portraits.



First we have our framed products. We have two ways of framing, one we call standard and the other premium. The difference between the two is in the size and finish of the moulding as well as in the way in which we mount the photos within the frame. The frame shown above is an example of our premium frames. Standard frame options, as seen here on the right, are generally used as gifts or as desktop prints rather than wall mounted prints.

I like to create collections that can be hung together to create more of a focal point…

I Photographed My First Horses

It has been such a pleasure being able to add so many new ventures to my repertoire this year. I shot my first wedding, my first Mayor, first portfolio, and now my first horses. And what a joy that has been. Horses are such naturally beautiful and interesting creatures. It was difficult not to get good shots really. Although, as it turns out I did get a couple of bad ones. Apparently Harry looked fat as he ran towards the field in my direction and I didn't capture him in the best light at that time.

Sharon approached me to photograph her horses after receiving the magazine cover for her daughter, Jo, from one of my Clique parties. I was asked to photograph Jo along with their horses, of which they have 3. I was ever so keen to try this out as I had never done anything like it. Having done so now, I look forward to having the opportunity to do it again. I had so much fun both taking and enhancing the images.
Sharon attended the viewing recently and she loved the images. She said s…

Wedding Workshop in Nottingham

On Wednesday of this week I made the trek up to Nottingham (which wasn't actually much of a trek compared to most of the other delegates who travelled from as far as Glasgow, Portsmouth and South Wales) for a workshop held at Crash Taylor's home. Crash, a very talented photographer, specialising in weddings is someone I can highly recommend to anyone.

Apart from spending the morning getting to know the other photographers we then spent the afternoon photographing a hired model, in her own wedding dress, as we wandered through Nottingham Castle. It provided me a chance to see how other photographers handled their weddings as well as a chance to experiment with equipment I haven't had a chance to play around with. Like in this image to the right. Here I used my flash, mounted on a tripod off to the side. This allowed me to achieve studio quality lighting out of the studio, a technique I will be using in my environmental portraiture.


I can't seem to make up my mind on whic…

Photographing Dee - She may be famous someday

I have recently had the pleasure of photographing Dee Short, a recent graduate of Phil Winston's Theatreworks College in Blackpool. Dee had already had portfolio photographs from another photographer with whom she was unhappy with so I asked her to bring them along to see what it was she didn't like. Having seen them I saw straight away what was missing. Dee did not look comfortable or relaxed. They were lacking a sense of naturalness that I feel is essential for a performers portfolio collection.

So we set out to create a more natural selection of images. This will be done in 3 stages. For the first we decided to do a black background for a dramatic and classic look.


Admittedly, it isn't always easy getting a subject to relax and be themselves. You can look at someone and see that they are beautiful but that doesn't automatically mean it will be easy to get a good photograph. A good photographer though should be able to get their subject to relax and become comfortab…

Lands End to John O'Groats with our Friends, the Hall McNairs ~ Part III

Now this is the final entry regarding this trip. I think I have taken up enough space on something that really isn't even that closely related to my photography business, even though it does contain a lot of photographs.

So, where were we? Oh yes, the good weather had ended. It was Saturday August 9th and the Highland Games in Mey were due to start that afternoon. We managed to get the tent and everything packed away in the dry but it didn't take long for the rain to start. By the time we arrived at the Highland Games it was typical, horrid, Scottish weather. And of course, I forgot to pack proper rain gear for us all. But we weren't going to let that stop us, particularly since this was the closest we were ever going to get to royalty.

I must admit that I knew very little about the Highland Games. I certainly didn't know that the public could enter on the day. Having seen that very few people were entered anyway my step son decided he'd like to enter. My husband and…