Friday Afternoon Confessionals - Friday Vibes

This week I’m sharing an adventurous, fearless, wild, brave spirit with a cheeky, compassionate soul.

‘Ellen the Adventurer’ (my new nik name for her). There was no tree un-climbed, no stretch of sand un touched as we rambled our way around Frensham Little Pond in Surrey a couple of late Monday evenings ago with two gorgeous dogs and fabulous Mum Maria in tow..

I recognise the tom boy spirit, that energy of youth + the props collected along the way came in VERY handy a little later on. We laughed, danced, ran + waded into the pond in the hope of capturing an awesome shot and not getting nibbled by the giant carp that inhabit the area.

The light, that summer light, later in the day, was divine and enriched colours + skin tones……bliss x

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funnies + out takes……..

there are always funny moments, serious moments, moments of mania, dancing usually and lots of laughter and I am smiling sharing these moments in particular, the dancing and then the leggings rolled up to my knees in the water to get the shot because as we were walking I just in a split second saw a frame and knew if I ignored it I would regret it. The only way to get it was in the water too and hilariously Maria caught it! I am so pleased, I love behind the scenes ‘action’ pictures!! Thanks so much Maria xx

freedom feels like……….

freedom feels like……….

Clementine

When Monday feels all snuggles and snoozes

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Remember Naomi’s baby bump cuteness???

Ahh yes…..this gorgeousness!!

Ahh yes…..this gorgeousness!!

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Wellllll……….Clementine has arrived and is a super gorgeous bebe with full dark hair and ooodles of cuteness!!

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November was a busy baby month x

It was such a joy to meet so many new babies during November and my birthday month!! 

Baby Grace, gently holds her Dad's finger whilst gazing towards the camera and figuring out that 'clicking' noise came from me!!

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It's been an amazing 10 days....

Talking, chatting, demonstrating, acts of kindness, smiles, laughter, photography, yoga....

Sometimes you go along and you're super aware and engaged with your surroundings and sometimes you're just not, life is hectic, things get in the way, weeks fly by in what seems a blink of an eye or a sneeze and whoosh! it's gone.

I've just gotten over the flu and it was not pretty AT ALL...I was a sneezing, snivelling germ bag walking around in a cloud of garlic....how people came near me I'm not sure, my cough alone sounded like I smoked a million cigars since I was 2 years old and well it's amazing I feel better at all ...lol ok, ok...perhaps I'm tipping in to man flu territory now lol...I digress...

Amongst me feeling absolutely dreadful were wondrous moments which made me sparkle (I knew I was sparkling but I have a feeling the snot hid it for a while!!)  I'm wondering if I noticed them more because I wasn't racing at a million miles an hour and my brain couldn't do its normal multi tasking thing or the universe was just delighted I'd slowed down...I'm not sure BUT I wanted to share these moments because they are so lovely and too good not to share and pass my smile on...share it around, feel the love and delight, warm up on it, beam...

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FIRSTLY....I had an AWESOME photo session in London with Aparna & Jayesh...such a wonderful couple, super cute together and so much fun and not only really natural in front of the camera, super playful too and busted out some fab dance moves and brilliant lifts! 

The very next day still delighted with the session in London I headed to the beach! I am happiest like a little piggy in do do when in my shorts and wellies with my camera in hand AND I was doing all this AT. THE. BEACH. sooooo cool! Above is the last shot of the day where Ellen made a funny face and whilst it's soft focus I love it because she is such a live wire. 

This is our annual photo session and I was so delighted when I approached her car to meet her and her daddy, she saw me and just lit up, excited for pictures and to run around on the beach I think..it's really special to photograph little people and watch them grow + I think this is our 5th photo session....so precious.

Wednesday came around that week and I participated in a fabulous night of Photography as part of Photomonth London. Luke Dodd of the Guardian and Observer spoke about the influence of Jane Bown for our 'Girl Town' residence + we followed with a panel discussion on influential women in the industry. The panel comprised of an awesome line up : David McCoy, Creative Imaging Manager at the Guardian, Karen Harvey of ShutterHub, Dan Gaba, Photo editor of the Wall St. Journal, Maggie, Founder of Photomonth, Becky Warnock, Projects Manager at Photovoice and me (Me in action above!!) 

Some of our FAB speakers in action (photo courtesy of Kate O'Neil)

Images: Top: Melanie Eclare, Wendy Ewald, Jane Bown, Bottom: Mary Ellen Mark

OK, so that was just a few days.....I rolled on with the flu.....edited, photographed..AND THEN.....the weekend rolled around and a few amazing things happened. I didn't really tell many people what was on the horizon as to be honest I was a little nervous! I have spoken about photography and taught photography for years so I can stand up and chat away BUT this weekend I spoke for the first time on Yoga. (my other passion!) I was so excited and delighted to be asked to join my wonderful friend Yvonne Bishop Weston and discuss stress and how yoga can assist in managing it. Yvonne is a nutritionist and so these two talks complimented each other perfectly and enabled us to form pieces of a jigsaw puzzle when it comes to healthy ways to tackle stress, OH and the talk was at OLYMPIA...yes the one in London, the big venue lol

IT. WAS. AMAZING.a whole room doing alternate nostril breathing, chair yoga + being given tools to help manage their stress. The goose bumps I had as I left carried me all the way home and well in to the following week. I guess now would be a good time to confess that when I'm not photographing, I teach yoga + I love the combination of this dual career :-) My yoga instagram snap below.

OH + whilst I was traveling by train to the venue, hacking like an old women about to loose a lung, the guy next to me offered me a mint...how kind and what a lovely gesture....for a few seconds I hesitated worried it was drugged or laced with something nasty (because that happens so often right!!! omg!!) + then I quickly thought, it's a packed train, I'll be ok and accepted his SUPER KIND offer and we started chatting. so lovely+ so rare to have a whole conversation on the train, but it was so wonderful, such a lovely act of kindness that I really treasured and appreciated.

Two speaking events, on two of my fav subjects in one week was just incredible. So inspiring and uplifting. London, the beach...photographing in great locations AND......

My dad surprised me too - I've been looking (this is not photo related at all) but I've been looking for a bench to go with my dining room table, a well loved, bashed up a bit, shabby chic number..we've had a few chats about where I could find one and my hunt has been consistent......that was until visiting my parents last week they suddenly said "Oh, we found you a bench"...oh my goodness what a find! What joy...when I asked where, Dad just said he bought me one and as mum led me to the garage she tutted," he didn't buy it, he MADE it"!!!! So in time for my birthday next week, my dearest dad has made me a wooden bench + I love it! No pictures yet as he's still painting it, but what AMAZINGNESS!

Have an awesome week everyone! Smile at everything (without looking like a nutter) + enjoy the incredible array of colours Autumn is blessing us with this year xx

An American pregnancy in London.....

Ashley has written a beautiful blog piece on her experience of being an expat pregnant in London and it's super informative!! I had the complete pleasure of working with Ashley and Jeff for Flytographer creating fun 'bump' pictures in Notting Hill before Xmas and then when Margot arrived in January + at 11 days young we captured gorgeous new born pictures......

" have someone else find you a photographer. // Being in a new city means limited resources — and since none of our friends here had hired a maternity photographer before, I wasn’t sure who to ask. I started to poke around online a few times, but I was always overwhelmed… when your only requirement is “NOT CHEESY,” Google doesn’t really deliver the goods.

After one too many websites full of photos of hand-hearts on bumps in cornfields (you know the ones), I realized that DUH, I didn’t need to find other personal recommendations — Flytographer already has access to some of the best photographers in London. We booked a 30 minute shoot, and as soon as we met Jackie, it was like hanging out with an old friend. Best of all, she didn’t ask Jeff to kiss my bare belly ONCE.

Obviously, it was a no-brainer to ask her to take our newborn photos, too."