What I loved this month: September

Well hello dear friends and welcome to autumn! It’s been a glorious indian summer and I’ve barely had to crack out a more seasonal wardrobe yet. This month theres quite a lot of entertainment I’ve been loving – with weddings slimming down I’m beginning to have more time for me! So here comes what I’ve loved this month….

  1. The Circle

I haven’t watched any ‘live’ television in forever (apart from Bake Off).. most of our TV preferences are box sets from Netflix. The concept of this show intrigued me and I’ve become hooked. Yes, its ultimately junk and is basically Big Brother for millennials, but its an entertaining watch!

American Horror Story Cult Review

2. American Horror Story: Cult 

I know there is an even newer series of AHS just out, but with me being behind thanks to Netflix I only watched Cult this month. It definitely wouldn’t be autumn without AHS! Its themed around what I keep referring to as a dystopia where Trump won the election.. but obviously he actually did ha! This takes he anger/mixed emotions from that election and made this series into a bit of a social commentary on politics, feminism and the state of America atm. Really interesting and a great direction for AHS to go in. I didn’t even finish the series before that because it was too gory, but this actually had a lot more thought around it. PS: just me that found Evan Peters with a blue top knot hot still?

3. The Indie Show with Jack Saunders

I feel like Radio 1 has been missing something since Zane Lowe left – I’ve rarely listened since he left, and been missing my fill of new indie. This month, R1 introduced the Indie Show with Jack Saunders and I have to say, its brilliant. Straight away my new music radar has got better and I’m feeling like my music collection has been refreshed. Each show has so many bangers, plus I’m loving the Thursday Night Indie Disco.. its basically a disco from my college/Uni days, which hands down was the best era for indie.

4. New Music 

The Indie Show has led me to some new fav music finds this month. To name but a few, I’m loving: Dream Wife, King Nun, Spring King and Ten Tonnes. Also big hello to supergroup Mini Mansions who are made up of QOTSA , Last Shadow Puppets and Arctic Monkeys members. What a roster. Fav new song of the month though goes to Yungblud:

It’s different, super playful and makes me immediately want to jump around.

5. Ending wedding season on a high

Zanna & Ben’s wedding was my last of 2018 and although it rained for the whole day it was a real high to end the season on. I loved hanging out with Zanna and her bridesmaids in the morning and capturing the rest of the day as they tied the knot. The whole thing was super relaxed and everyone was so friendly. I can’t tell you how gorgeous their venue and setup was .. absolutely stunning!!! The foliage, candles and chandeliers gave a grand but cosy feel to their day. More to come soon – I’m literally exporting their images as I write this!

Shot of a lake with a boat house behind in rainy Cotswolds

6. Harry Potter Studios

This feels so long ago as it was right at the start of the month, but as a belated birthday present my OH took us to the Harry Potter Studios! I wrote a full blog post on it here, but will quickly say that is absolutely great. I can’t believe the amount of set that was truly built rather than done with CGI, and the sheer number of props/detail was incredibly impressive. Any fellow Harry Potter fans, get yourself down there!

7. Short/Spontaneous trips 

After shooting Zanna & Ben’s wedding I decided I would stay in the Cotswolds for the night and do a little road trip around them the next day. I woke up to a disgusting day with heavy rain and nearly drove home.. but so glad I didn’t! The weather did (eventually) clear and the villages of the Cotswolds were so picturesque and perfect it was just a great way to spend a Sunday. I’ll write a full blog on it soon!

The next day, I was up at 4.30am to fly to Vienna to direct a video and photography shoot there. It was an intense few days but fun all the same! We were staying at the Grand Hotel Wien, which looked like it was straight out of a Wes Anderson movie! Unbelievably, I got upgraded to an executive suite so I had a VERY jammy night in the biggest bed I’ve ever slept in.

A huge plush pink bed in Vienna hotel

Reading list this month:

  1. You Are a Badass – Jen Sincero 3.5/5 – The fact that I’ve forgotten most of the main points of this book kind of says a lot I guess, but it was a motivational read! It definitely helped me make a leap I’ve been putting off for a while, so was good for that. (You’ll hear about the leap soon) 😉
  2. Get Your Shit Together – Sarah Knight 2/5 – Sarah’s books have been catching my interest for a while and this one was on offer for Kindle so I delved in. I was kind of hoping for more time management tips but really this book offered nothing new to what I’ve read before.
  3. Reasons to Stay Alive – Matt Haig 4/5 – Written about Matt’s experience of depression, this is an insightful read and reminds you to be grateful for even the smallest things in life.
  4. Buddhism for Beginners – Gabriel Shaw 2/5 – I’m an atheist but recently have been drawn to the principles of Buddhism as it seems like more of a way to live, rather than focused on the worship of a deity. I’m only giving it 2/5 as this book was not very well written, but the concepts were interesting and it definitely made me want to look into Buddhism more!

Let me know what you’ve been reading/generally loving this month. Have a good October all! If you are getting married, I am currently offering 10% off all 2019 weddings if booked before 31st Oct. Drop me a message now to save your date.

Caroline x

What I loved this month: July 2018

I’m not quite sure where July went, its absolutely stormed by. Amazed that it is already time for me to right this blog, and to be honest struggling to remember what I did this month apart from masses of editing! I was shooting Rosie & Davide’s wedding last weekend and now have a 6 week break before the next – I’m not quite sure what I’ll do on my Saturdays now!

Here is what I loved in July:

  1. My bike

With the heatwave sweeping the UK, by the middle of June, and after 4 years of sweating it out, I decided enough was enough on the central line. I had been deliberating buying a bike to cycle into work for a few months but always put it straight out of mind thinking it was too far/dangerous. But I was fed up of dreading my commute home so went ahead and bit the bullet. I did a few test runs on an OFO bike and after the first run was in love with cycling. I bought myself a Dawes Duchess and it is my new baby! This was my first full week cycling everyday and its been so great – my commute now feels like a little adventure and I appreciate London so much more – being able to cycle through Victoria and the Olympic Park every day is a real joy. Admittedly.. my opinion may change when the colder, wet weather creeps in but I’m determined that my central line days are over.

My Duchess Dawes blue bike in Victoria Park

2. How Not To Die

In my last post I had just started reading this but raved about how interesting it was. The book is essentially a list of the worse diseases and how your diet can help to prevent/cure them – your diet being a plant based one. It’s really eye opening and I can recommend it to anyone.

How Not to Die review

3. Buddha bowls

Influenced by the book above I’ve been trying to eat more of the ‘Daily Dozen’, which are the 12 ideal foods to eat everyday to fight off disease. With the summer heat as well, my fav dinner has become a buddha bowl where I can just chuck in all sorts of veggies, protein and some grain. Topped with hummus, always.

4. The Staircase

Our show of the month on Netflix was definitely The Staircase. For any Making a Murderer fans.. this is for you! Following the story of a man who found his wife lying at the bottom of their stairs dead and the subsequent police investigation, this will be your next binge. I’m not going to give much away so just go watch.

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Reading wise this month, apart from How Not To Die, I’ve been limited – normally I would read for about an hour everyday on the tube but thats now gone! So the only other book I read this month:

The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks: This was part of Amazon’s 100 books to read in your Lifetime so I decided to tick that one off. It was a very dark read, and as a vegan, with the numerous cases of animal cruelty in it, I had to remember this was just a book. I really enjoyed it though and the ending was a huge twist! 3/5

Caroline x

London Wedding Photographer: 5 Tips for Planning Your Wedding Day Timings

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If you are planning your wedding and trying to figure out the perfect timings for your day, have a quick read of my 5 top tips to consider:

1. Leave time for you and your new spouse

This may sound obvious/stupid, but you would be surprised at the number of couples who tell me their day went by in a flash and they hardly saw each other! Try and enjoy some time out together, even if its just a 10 minute walk after the wedding breakfast. I also always think your portrait time is a perfect opportunity to get some quality time together and step back from the day (if you excuse the third wheel) 😉

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2. Set aside plenty of time for group shots and portraits

Ideally I would suggest setting aside between an hour / an hour and a half before your wedding breakfast for group shots and portraits. However, this will largely vary on the number of group shots you want. Make a list of the groups you want, and chat with your photographer about timings. If you want a photo of the whole wedding party, this alone can take 20 minutes to organise! Provide entertainment for your guests while you are away, and have your ushers or bridesmaids on hand to round up the troops for the group shots.

3. Revel in your bridal prep 

Am I the only one who thinks part of the enjoyment of a big girls night out is getting ready? I think the same applies to your bridal prep! Start early to avoid a mad rush at the end and factor in time for distractions.. inevitably you’ll have people popping in and out to say hello/check on final preparations. Most importantly, make sure you eat as it’s a long time before the wedding breakfast and that bubbly will be in full flow after the ceremony 😉

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4. Hellos & Congratulations

Factor in some extra time straight after the ceremony for congratulations/ hellos with your long lost family/ friends you haven’t said hi to yet. I would suggest 15-20 minutes of mingling. If your ceremony is in a different location from the reception, don’t forget to work out how long it will take people to get there (and allow an extra bit of time for the dawdlers / people getting lost).

5. Consider sunset portraits 

The standard time for portraits is in between the ceremony and the wedding breakfast. However, photographically this isn’t the best time to do it: light is harsh in the middle of the day, particularly if it is a completely clear summer afternoon. Light in the evening will be a lot softer and frankly, gorgeous, so consider doing some sunset portraits. These can be either before your first dance or after, dependant on when in the year your wedding is. I’m sure by that point in the day you will be in full party mode, but 10-15 minutes is enough. Bring it up with your photographer – I am sure they wouldn’t be adverse to the idea. Sunset portraits are my personal favourites.

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Follow me on Facebook for more tips and blogs, or get in touch now to book your 2018 wedding!

Caroline x

London Wedding Photographer: 20 Alternative First Dance Songs

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If anyone knows me or follows my Instagram account, they will know I am a huge music fan. Rock and indie makes my heart glow. Having witnessed a lot of first dances I often wonder what I would pick. I know a lot of couples I chat to don’t want to go for a traditional cheesey love song, or Thinking Out Loud by Ed Sheeran – the most popular first dance song of 2017.

 I’ve compiled a little list of some alternative options to get your first dance inspiration flowing:

  1. Yellow – Coldplay

  2. Angels – The XX

  3. You’ve Got The Love – Florence and the Machine

  4. Toothpaste Kisses – The Maccabees

  5. Everlong – The Foo Fighters

  6. The Most Beautiful Girl in the World – Prince

  7.   You Always Make me Smile – Kyle Andrews

  8.   I could Die For You – RHCP

  9.  Anyone Else But You – The Moldy Peaches

  10.  All I Want Is You  – Barry Louis Polisar

  11.  I Would Do Anything For You – Foster the People

  12. Only love – Ben Howard

  13.  I’ll Be Yours – Those Dancing Days

  14. You Make My Dreams – Daryl Hall & John Oates

  15. XO – John Mayer

  16.  Everlasting Light – The Black Keys

  17. You and I (Forever) – Jessie Ware

  18. Still Into You – Paramore

  19. She’s Got You High – Mumm-Ra

  20.  Wonderwall – Oasis

    Check out my Spotify playlist below so you can listen to all the songs. Let me know in the comments what you think – or what you personally would have 🙂

    My summer 2018 is also getting booked up quickly, so contact me now to save your date!

    Caroline x

https://open.spotify.com/embed/user/missfunkymonks/playlist/5yIeBgCEp0YIb6Rq7HBKQw

 

 

London Wedding Photographer: A Couple’s Guide to Posing for your Wedding Photos

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When realising that you need to book a wedding photographer, I’m sure most couples thoughts go to ‘OMG but I hate being in front of a camera’, ‘I hate cheesy, posed shots’, ‘what if we look really awkward together?’.

You are most definitely not alone in these thoughts – even people who like the camera are probably not used to being overly affectionate with their partner in front of a stranger and their camera. I know I am totally useless at photos.. I’ve become so used to being behind it anytime someone turns a camera on me I default to stupid face mode.

Posing is one of the most important parts of capturing good photos of you and your fiancé. Done wrong, it can look horribly awkward, or make you feel uncomfortable, which will show in your photos. Whilst there are things you can do to get the best out of your photos, I think it is down to the photographer to lead the way. I’ve put together this blog to give you an insight into posing.

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Firstly, I can’t emphasise enough how important I think an engagement shoot is before the big day. This is the perfect chance to meet your photographer, get to know them on a personal level, and get comfortable with their presence. More importantly, from my side it is a chance to see how you naturally interact with your fiancé, and to try out what works and what doesn’t. This is essentially a test run – you don’t want to be testing out posing on the big day, as time will be limited. I am very relaxed and tend to chat with my couples and see how they naturally fall together while we get to know each other. This immediately gives me an idea of how much guidance is needed, what poses would work, and what wouldn’t. I then go ahead and try a few different options, in 3 or 4 different settings,  so by the time I leave I know exactly which poses I would use again for the big day, and how to make you feel relaxed quickly.

On the big day, giving your hands something to do is really important. Hands can so easily look really awkward if left hanging! For walking shots, you will be holding hands, so this isn’t a big deal, but what about when stood still? I tend to pose my brides holding their bouquet, either down at their hip to the side, or out to the front at a low angle. I normally then pose up the groom with his hands around the bride’s waist, resting on the hip, or one hand in his trouser pocket for a more relaxed casual look.

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Most importantly, I want you to relax! This may be harder on an engagement shoot when you’ve just met me, but I will work hard to get you to feel comfortable around me. This has to translate into your body posture though – I’m not talking about slouching, but relax your legs and knees, loosen and drop your shoulders a bit. (Any fellow yogis out there may find this easier!).  Don’t feel you have to be stiff and proper – it will look stand off-ish and separate you from your partner.

The walking shot is a really good way to start off a shoot – I can let you slowly get into the idea of me taking pictures. I encourage my couples to chat as much as possible – this is when you get the really natural moments of interaction. These are the moments which really shine, and always end up being my favourite photos.

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Depending on height, the groom stood behind the bride with arms around her is also a really lovely pose. Again this is only one I try after an engagement shoot as some couples find it awkward and unnatural. This kind of shot is also really good for close ups of the rings.

Hopefully that has given you a little bit of insight into what to expect during either an engagement shoot or your wedding day, and therefore will make you feel more relaxed already! If you would like to work with me, head over to my contact page – I would love to hear from you.

Caroline

Happy New Year & Welcome to my new Website!

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A very Happy New Year to all of you. I hope you are feeling sufficiently stuffed and relaxed after Christmas and ready to take on the coming year. For all of you getting married in 2018… this is it!! I’m also going to take a good guess that  there are a number of you who got engaged over the festive period.. congratulations.

I would like to welcome you to my new website. A while in the planning, it took me until the Christmas wind down to find the time to build this. The benefit of this timing is that at least I’ve had an excuse to be sat with a glass of mulled wine while creating it 😉

Hopefully this site will provide you with more information than the previous one, and work better on mobile. I’ve also added in a new page – go check out my testimonials. There are still things I want to add and change about the site,  so keep visiting back to check out what things I have been updating. If you see anything that isn’t working, comment here and let me know so I can fix it 🙂

You can also expect more regular blogs – including a personal based one where I round up my fav things at the end of each month. As always, my blog is still a resource for brides to be – if there are any specific topics you want me to cover, or have questions, drop me a line!

Go have a peruse and a play. Get in touch here to book  your date for next year, or just tell me all about your big day/ plans for 2018/ whats rocking with you. Would love to hear from you.

Caroline x