I never thought wildlife photography was easy. The natural elements are unpredictable; the wildlife won’t necessarily pose at my whim. That was what I was thinking as I sat in the Bat Sanctuary at College Lake. The weather suddenly turned unpleasant, and numpty here did not prepare for ill weather. In my defense it was quite warm merely an hour ago.
I brought my Nikon D7000 along with a cheap 70-300 hoping that could handle today; but no. The birds are a fair distance away. The drizzle of rain is making the images hazy. I can hear them, but cannot get near enough for an image I would be happy with.
As I ponder my next move (and wait for the drizzle to ease) I am left wondering what the Pro wildlife photographers do? Maybe they’re more prepared than I am? I did not think to pack food; I’ve only got a bottle of water with me.
Perhaps the skill of a wildlife photography lies in patience an know where the best observation places are?
I moved on to the main hide which they called the Octagon. I was the only one there. The weather had eased so I thought I would wait for some birds to get close to. However as I waited the weather become worse. I was essentially stuck until the rain settled. But I could not see a break in the clouds.
A reasonable amount of time had passed and I could not imagine the rain surrendering. I had no choice but to pack my gear into my LowePro backpack, and make a run for it.
Ultimately it was a disappointing trip photographically. I did see wildlife, but they were so few and far away that I did not capture anything to the standard I expect from myself. But it was still a nice afternoon out. It gave me time to be away from people and to be alone with my thoughts. I intend to go the College Lake again but this time with a bigger lens! Something else to put on my expensive ‘want list’ of camera equipment!
When I look at people I often wonder about their aspirations. You see couples just walking together, sharing little private jokes and happy knowing they are with someone special. In my job, not only do I get to photograph a diverse range of people, but I also get to know them a little bit and just for a very short moment they let me see a small part of their private world. Martina and Anthony were no exception when they opened their world to me as we walked around Watermead in Aylesbury to do our Pre Wedding photoshoot.
They arrived a little late but they are such lovely people they apologised immediately. The came in separate cars; Martina’s boot was loaded with a suitcase full of clothes. I thought they took my suggestion of bringing a case full of clothes literally, but as it so happens they were on their way back from an overnight social gathering. Already I could see the dynamics between them; I had begun to gauge how to conduct this photo shoot the moment we said hello, but when I saw how their were together I wanted to try a few rarely used compositions.
Anyone who lives in Aylesbury will be familiar with Watermead; as photographic playgrounds go it does have many features to play with. My style of photography, if I were to label it, is motion in stilled life. When I direct my couples I rarely ask them to ‘just pose’. I ask them to move and to be as interactive with each other and me as much as possible; I get the best results by setting an imaginary moment, very much like a movie director would, and ask the couple to ‘go there’. Martina and Anthony were fantastic at this. I frequently asked them to feel what they mean to each other; every time that ‘feeling’ would surface into expressions my Nikon would capture.
The shoot was enormous fun, we chatted about life, relationships and of course their wedding at the end of June 2013.
Pow Pow Pictures is exciting to have them as clients. If we can get these types of photos in a couple of hours, imagine what we could do together during a wedding day…
Much love and peace. God bless.
If I am going to spend a few hours photographing a couple for their pre wedding shoot, then it has to be someplace special. I am local to Buckinghamshire so I had no knowledge of a location near my clients Aileen and Tim called Windsor Great Park. It is huge; so big in fact I had to ask Aileen to give very specific instructions of where to meet up.
That day was a bank holiday and sunny, which meant it was very busy. The long car queue was worth it though. The shoot was very spontaneous and creative. As we walked through the woods there was inspiration everywhere. There were bridges, trees (naturally), Blue Bells, rivers, logs and even doggies!
I had a great time with Aileen and Tim. Pow Pow Pictures will be shooting their wedding very soon and cannot wait!!
Here are a few preview shots. Please LIKE below if you like!
The Starlight Childrens Foundation is an establish charity design to help seriously ill children in Hospitals and Hospices provide support, stimulation and comfort to both the children and their family. In the past 12 months they have helped 500,000 poorly children. This charity is the subject of last night’s gig organized by Victoria Norris and her volunteers.
Victoria Norris has organized music fundraisers a few times which I have covered so I was already familiar with the setup. In all the of her events she is in the middle of setup, seating, planning, set list and a hundred other things. She is incredibly modest and has time for everybody she encounters! I had no idea how she does it; remain incredibly calm and seemingly pull it off with ease!
The event was held at The Distillers Pub in Hammersmith; a quaint and lively pub in South London. Upstairs is the Regal Room. A modest sized venue for intimate events. Personally I wish they had better lighting to make the artists on stage really pop, but I’m just being a picky photographer. The Regal Room is perfect for those cosy acoustic songs played to friends and music lovers.
There were six musicians on the tiny stage that night. Here are some of my personal highlights.
If I were to describe Freddie it would be a gifted and sensitive young soul. The fact that she’s sixteen is irrelevant because, regardless of age, if you can hold an audience’s attention through your words then you have star power.
There’s no denying she’s pretty and photogenic. I managed to get a short moment with her to get some nice portrait poses done. She was very natural in front of my Nikon. She took directions well and was very capable of improvising. She is definitely one to look out for. With right guidance and management she can break the music scene.
To be in the room with Jamie is something very special. On first impressions he is an unassuming guy who you would not notice in a crowded room such as The Regal Room. I could not tell he was one of the acts that evening. Aimee, our host for the evening, announced Jamie on stage. He plugged himself him; said a short and soft introduction and then began to sing.
Jamie’s voice I would describe as gentle, warm and humble. The ambient chatter in the room was hushed very quickly as everyone was enchanted by Jamie’s words. There was just the right amount of guitar level to compliment his voice. Pow Pow Pictures was mesmerized. Jamie was not physically dynamic on the small stage, but he did not need to be. His performance was through his singing.
Between songs he would interact with the audience with an easy tone. He is naturally funny and engaging. He made a joke about wanting people to buy his new EP on iTunes; apparently if “five people buy his EP he would shoot up the iTunes charts!”.
Pow Pow Pictures has known Ellie for a few years now ever since her band Slashed Seat Affair came into my town. That is all sentimental history now. Ellie has formed a very new act with musician Alan Bond. Together they came on to perform three new songs; one of them they had only written days earlier!
Ellie owned the stage, but there were moments she looked vulnerable which made her more endearing. There’s no doubt that all eyes were on Ellie; personally I would have liked a longer set rather than just the 2 songs from Ellie. Pow Pow Pictures would like to hear her take on a cover; the Regal Room is perfect for intimate and individual expression. Perhaps next time Ellie!?
Ellie was oozing confidence with moments of wildness; she was fun to watch and always great to listen to. We have missed her on stage.
Afterwards I caught up with Ellie. She seemed excited to be back on stage.
If you have an event you would live to be covered, then please email [email protected]
Yesterday was great fun, I was invited to photograph at the Distillers pub in Hammersmith last night. I am writing a more detailed account of the evening in the Pow Pow Newsletter which you can sign up for here. In the meantime, here is a quick montage of the event.
Just a sneak peek from yesterday’s wedding.
First of all, I want to thank God (in every sense) for providing a glorious day! The sun was just beautiful.
This wedding was funny, emotional, entertaining and just full of amazing moments. Some of the guests were fantastic fun. I cannot remember the last time I laughed so much with wedding guests!
I just wanted to post a few quickly edited photos from the Greigs wedding. If you want to see more then please visit www.facebook.com/powpowpictures where I post more frequently.
Please click LIKE to support these photos.
Way back in October 2012 I was invited to visit Halfway To New York hard work, erm… work on their new album. I only had a few hours in my schedule so wasn’t able to stay as long as I would like, but the lads were very hospitable and accommodating as I weaved in and out of them recording.
The lads worked hard but also I was able to capture the chemistry between them. they all seem to have their personality ‘roles’ which was fun to witness and photograph.
I hope you like them. I haven’t seen the lads since but I follow them on the old BookFace at https://www.facebook.com/halfwaytonewyork