Down by the river

These two crazy kids just make me smile so much!

I knew as soon as I met these two that they’d be so much fun to photograph. Rebecca & Kyle are so unconventional, and just aren’t afraid to get their hands mucky!

I met these two at Studley Royal near Harrogate, and I swear they had me laughing the whole time we were there. We took a wander down to the seven bridges, and after all the dry weather, there was hardly even a river there!

Much as global warming is the absolute devil, the shallow river did mean we could get some pretty cool photos. All three of us kicked off our shoes and went for a paddle! I think Rebecca’s face when trying to cross the river by herself was an absolute treat.

At one point, these two decided to climb up to the top of, quite frankly, a bloody massive hill to get some cool photographs. The fact that this was their idea just shows you how outgoing these two are!

I’m SO excited to photograph their wedding this weekend at Thief Hall in Northallerton. Bring it on!

Inappropriate comments, dogs and cognac

I met these guys at their house ahead of the big wedding this weekend for some photos in the garden, some cognac and some fun with the dogs! I was met at the door with the biggest hugs, and also got to meet the family for the first time!

It’s safe to say that Harry was… ahem… a little apprehensive about having his photos taken? Nancy informed me that she’d spent the majority of the afternoon tanking him up on the cognac… Well, if that’s what it takes, it certainly did the trick!

I don’t think these two even know how gorgeous they are together. They are SO natural with each other – it really is lovely. I found it especially amusing when Harry decided to come out and say ‘let’s turn this PG into an 18’ half way through portraits. After nearly dying of laughter, Nancy composed herself and proceeded to look utterly horrified. It has to be said, this moment is my favourite from the shoot. If Harry’s inappropriate comments produce some great photos, then it’s a yes from me 😉

So excited for the big wedding at Wharfedale Grange this weekend!

The best ever!

When I first started out as a wedding photographer, it genuinely worried me that switching my all time favourite hobby into my job would make me become sick of it. Well, it’s weddings like this that remind me how much I love what I do!

Kirsty & Dom’s wedding was quite possibly the best ever.

In case you haven’t heard, I absolutely love these two. Meeting them for the first time was absolutely hilarious, and ever since we’ve all got on so well.

The wedding was at the Red Lion in Burnsall out in the Dales. I’ve been going there since I was about 3 years old, and never even knew they did weddings!

Photographing Kirsty getting ready was lovely. She was so nervous bless her. And when the moment came for her to walk down the aisle, Dom shed a little tear. It was the most precious moment.

One thing I have to say about this wedding is how much I loved the portraits! Kirsty & Dom are really into their photography, and it was such a pleasure to have them in front of the camera. They are both SO natural with each other, it really is beautiful to see.

Kirsty and Dom had been practicing their first dance for the past 6 weeks, and it was so emotional to watch! Everyone was on the dancefloor from the word go. Kirsty’s darling mother even taught me how to dance! What a treat!

And as if this wedding couldn’t have been any lovelier, I took one of my favourite photos of all time! Thank you Dom and Kirsty for just being the best!

If you go down to the woods today..

For Charlotte & George’s engagement shoot, we headed up to the Pine Woods in Harrogate. We were so lucky with the weather (although we have been every day recently!). It was such a lovely morning.

I met these guys in Betty’s, and we started the day right with some rather lovely raspberry lemonade. Very civilised! We chatted for ages about everything from wedding plans to old cars!

After we’d finished our drinks, we walked up to the Pine Woods for some photographs. It’s safe to say these guys were a little nervous about having their photos taken, but it was so nice to see them become so much more comfortable in front of the camera by the end of the shoot.

Charlotte really does have the most beautiful smile which makes my job so nice! I’m so excited to photograph their wedding in Harrogate this weekend!

At home with the family

I LOVE home sessions so much. And when the little ones are this adorable, it’s just a total dream!

I met these guys at their house in Harrogate and we had the loveliest time. A lot of the time I photograph family shoots out and about in the countryside, but there’s just something about home sessions that are just so special. I think the fact that everyone feels comfortable at home is a big factor.

I think some of my favourite photos from this shoot were just of the children playing. And the ‘eating an ice lolly’ faces were a picture! Literally!

If you’re looking to get some photos done of you and your family, this kind of shoot might be something to bear in mind 🙂

Pure happiness

Pure happiness. That’s the only way I can describe this wedding.

It was clear from the start that this wedding was going to be fun. In all honesty, I probably have never laughed so much at a wedding!

Kris & Deb’s wedding was also my first time shooting a wedding with my awesome gal pal Amy. Amy and I took it in turns to photograph both Kris and Deb getting ready. This was SO lovely because as a photographer, I usually only get to see one bride getting ready!

Emotions were running high on the lead up to the ceremony, and there was so much happiness when Kris and Deb got to see each other in their wedding dresses for the first time. Gray’s Court in York was the most gorgeous venue on such a beautifully sunny day.

These two are so crazily in love with each other – it’s so beautiful to see. I think my favourite part of the entire wedding was the evening reception. Kris and Deb even did their first dance outside because the weather was so gorgeous. It was hilarious to see their reactions when their best friends had written them a rap song especially for the wedding!

An unlikely meeting

When I came round to meeting Kirsty and Dom, it was one of those moments when you look back at yourself and just think ‘I love my job’.

Kirsty and Dom first came to my attention in the most unlikely of scenarios. One day in April, I was having a meeting with another client near Harrogate. When I got home, I was met with the loveliest of emails…

“Hi Lily. We were sitting next to you in the cafe today and I couldn’t help but be blown away by some of the photos I saw on your laptop. We just wanted to ask if you’re free to be our wedding photographer.”

It’s safe to say this put the biggest smile on my face!

I met Kirsty and Dom at Bolton Abbey for their engagement shoot. It really was the most beautiful, sunny morning. As soon as we’d met (properly!), it really felt like I’d known them for years. All 3 of us got on SO well from the second they walked in, and I must say I just absolutely adore these two. They make a photographer’s job very easy indeed.

We had a wander around the Abbey, down to the beach and to the stepping stones. These two legends even brought their wellies with them and jumped in the river. What more could a photographer want!? Dom came to the rescue when a poor child dropped their ice cream in the river whilst on the stepping stones. Ice cream and stepping stones? Probably not the best combination.

A ginger beer and a raspberry lemonade later, we headed our separate ways. As soon as I started driving back to Harrogate, I honestly just sat there with the biggest smile on my face. Granted, I must have looked like a total gimp, but who cares. I absolutely cannot wait to photograph their wedding this weekend!

Start of the wedding season

The wedding season got off to the loveliest start when I was lucky enough to photograph Fran & Lewis’ big day.

Bridal prep was one of the most chilled out wedding mornings I have had the pleasure of photographing! Everyone was so relaxed, and it was lovely to be able to capture such a happy lead up to the wedding. Fran got ready at her parents’ house in Ilkley, and everything had a very personal touch. Fran’s sister did her make up, her mother had made her wedding bouquet, whilst her Dad… poured everyone some Prosecco!

We had a bit of time to spare before heading off to Harrogate. This was the perfect opportunity to get some portraits of the beautiful bride. Fran had been so nervous about having her photograph taken before her engagement shoot, but on her wedding day she was like a different person! She absolutely rocked her portraits. This, ladies and gents, is why engagement shoots are an absolute MUST!

Once the carriages had arrived, it was off to Harrogate we went. Lewis and all the guests were waiting patiently, and there wasn’t a dry eye in the building when Fran walked down the aisle.

Once everyone had congratulated the happy couple, we headed across The Stray for some portraits. The wedding reception was in Scotton, so we set off from Harrogate to meet the rest of the wedding party. Despite only having 20 guests, everybody was in such high spirits. The atmosphere was buzzing from start to finish!

What a lovely wedding to start off the season.

A day out at Harewood House

Harewood House certainly was the perfect backdrop for this lovely family shoot!

When a fellow photographer asks you to do a family photo shoot, it’s a lovely feeling indeed!

We met near Harrogate early in the morning before it got too busy. This meant we pretty much had Harewood House to ourselves! It was the first time I had met gorgeous little Noah. I think the pictures speak for themselves for how cute he is! You can’t go too wrong when you dress your baby up as a teddy bear. So sweet!

We had a wander around the grounds, and it’s not very often on a family shoot that you get to see penguins. AND flamingos!

These guys were such brilliant models, and we even had some time at the end of the shoot to get some photos of Rebecca and Balazs together. And what a beautiful couple they are!

A morning with the lovely Sian

I have actually known Sian since I was about 8 years old, since being at primary school with her sister. Almost 15 years later, I didn’t expect us both to be working together in the wedding industry!

Sian has been running her wedding planning business for just over a year, and I would absolutely recommend her services to anyone. She really is one of the loveliest AND most organised people I’ve ever met! PLUS she colour coordinates her jumpers with her mugs. What more could you want from your wedding planner?

The other week Sian and I met at her gorgeous house in Leeds for a photo shoot. I was a very happy photographer indeed when I saw her insanely gorgeous office space. I think if my office looked like that I’d never leave the house again!

Here’s just a little bit more about the lovely Sian Chaplin Events:

What do you like most/ least about working for yourself?

I love the flexibility you get when working for yourself. Being able to create a working day that works perfectly for me is great. One day I’ll have a full day in the office, and the next I’ll be working on a photo shoot or meeting with a potential client. Every day is so different which I love! If I had to give a negative I guess it would be that often you can feel a little lonely. You have to make the effort to see people or even just have a chat on the phone.

What is your main way of marketing?

For me, I work a lot on Instagram and also SEO for my website. I find that the majority of my clients either find me through Google or Instagram so having a strong presence on both is something I spend a lot of time on. I love how Instagram is so visual with so much great content out there and lots of inspiration for couples!

How can photography help you to grow/ improve your business? 

I think having a collection of professional images is great for your business. They can be used in brochures, your website and across social media to create a really professional and approachable look.

I would definitely recommend a small business photo shoot. It’s such a great way to showcase your brand and to allow people to find out about you and your services. It’s also great to get one done if you are a little camera shy! Having my own branding shoot has made me feel so much more confident in front of the camera.