Valentine's Portraits

Back in November I was asked by my son’s nursery, Britannia Day Nursery, if I would take part in the Strictly Top Dancer competition. Teams of 5 novices are paired with a professional dancer and we have to create a dance and perform it in front of a room full of people in May. Those of you that know me will understand my fear of wearing heels.. I literally live in flip flops and hiking boots, I constantly fall over when I do venture out in heels and I even chose flat shoes on my wedding day. The fear is real. Dancing shoes have heels and I am expecting to have a few blunders, or a twisted ankle or to make a complete fool of myself on stage..

However it’s all for charity and that’s where the photography comes in. Each team has to raise £1500 towards the Breast Centre in Llandough Hospital. Fundraising in a world where everyone is asking for money is really difficult and you constantly feel you are sponsoring one thing or another. So I decided to take a day out and do voluntary valentine’s portraits at Britannia Day Nursery. The cost was quite small because I wanted to encourage people to take the opportunity and I raised £330. There might even be more as I am waiting for some parents to make their final choices. Thank you to all the parents that helped support me.

The Breast Centre at University Hospital Llandough treats between 450 and 500 new breast cancer patients every year; for initial investigations, follow-up treatment and patients returning for results. The new Breast Centre houses out-patient clinics and diagnostic radiology services together. Patients can have a mammogram or ultrasound and get their results on the same day; then if further investigations are needed these can also be carried out at the Centre. Donations to the Breast Centre Appeal are used to provide patients with additional services outside the NHS support.

If you’d like to donate you can show your support here. Thank you.

Below are some of the images I took. The beautiful canvas backdrop is from Intuition Backgrounds and was borrowed from my good friend Steph Keily Photography.

Pershore Confetti Fields

My best friend and I love flowers. We've been talking abut visiting flower fields and going to flower shows for years but never gotten around to it. It seems that having children who are about to start school in September has given us a kick to start doing all these long awaited day trips and make the most of the time we have left. 

So the confetti fields in Wick, just outside of Pershore seemed like the place to go and it didn't disappoint. Admittedly I thought the fields would be much larger and replicate the flower fields I once visited in Hokkaido Japan, but for 2 fourty somethings and 2 kids under 5 there was enough to do, playing hide and seek amongst the flowers, climbing on hay bales, playing on the tractor, eating ice-cream and of course taking some photos. 

As a photographer the conditions were dreadful.. we happened to meet at 11.30am so had the challenge of bright hot midday sun, there was absolutely no shade and my boy had a straw hat with holes in causing sun speckles all over his face. Shutter speed up really high to shoot at F2:8 and I couldn't even see through the view finder for most of it. So when I got home and downloaded these I couldn't be happier. Virtually no editing either - just a little playing with tones and shadows / highlights in Lightroom.