Fine Art Portraits // Falkirk Studio

Our first blog post of 2018!  We've got so much to look forward to this year.  We have lots of plans for the business and exciting new things we're bringing in.  The biggest changes are to our family shoots.  We've realised that by the time we photograph a wedding we have met the couple a good few times prior to the day, but most often than not when we're booked for a family shoot our first encounter with them is when we're all wandering around the agreed meeting point trying to figure out who's who!  So, now we are inviting everyone to come into the studio before the shoot day to chat, get to know one another, meet the kids, and plan the session.  That way by the time we get to photographing you we will already be at ease with one another, and hopefully the kids will remember us as those funny folks that are going to take their picture.  After the shoot, when your images are edited, we'll get you back into the studio to see your images and we'll be there to help you pick out favourites and show you the beautiful new products we have.  It's exciting and means we'll build much better relationships with you and you'll know we're there with you every step of the way offering our help.

Today was our first time back in the studio after a lovely Christmas and New Year with our family.  We asked Trini to come in for us to model for some portraits we wanted to try out.   We love natural light and the lovely soft glow it gives.  Today was pretty dark and rainy so we weren't sure how we were going to get on with no lights on in the room but we love the final result!  We told Trini we were just going to play around and take some pretty pictures.  We'd already chatted beforehand about clothes and make up and what our desired final look was so we were well prepared by the time it came to shooting the session.  And can we just say; how gorgeous is Trini?  I certainly didn't look like this at her age.  

Here are our favourites! 

Edinburgh Christmas Market // Couples Shoot

We love the Edinburgh Christmas Market.  Every year we take the kids and it's always a lovely day out, getting us in the festive spirit.  When Doshie and Curtis arranged a couples shoot with us as they were visiting Edinburgh for a few days before heading off to spend Christmas in Paris, we knew this was exactly where we wanted to take them.

Doshie and Curtis are from Houston, Texas but currently living in Germany.  They love to travel and we had such a great time with them shooting their portraits.  Doshie is also a photographer so we gave them minimal direction and they were fantastic.

Here are some of our favourites.

Supplier Collaboration // The Parsonage

We were delighted to be asked to photograph this collaboration of some local wedding suppliers.  The whole thing came together beautifully thanks to the organisation by Leigh at Regal Rocks.  The main thing for this shoot was to show off the talents of some key people who are local to the Central Scotland area and are available as suppliers for your wedding.

It was great fun meeting up at Olivia Cameron in Falkirk to go dress shopping for the shoot!  We came away with 4 dresses we loved and thought would work well for The Parsonage.

Then we nipped downstairs to Stewart Highland and spoke to Ewan about what we had in mind for our male model Sam.

We were lucky enough to get Chisholm Hunter involved and they provided some gorgeous watches and jewellery for us to use.  We highly recommend them when you are looking for your wedding jewellery - the pieces are stunning and the customer service in the Falkirk branch is fantastic.  Let Jo the manager know we sent you!

When we arrived on the morning of the shoot, hair and make up were in full swing so we got some great behind the scenes shots of the Me Time girls at work before having loads of fun with our models with the portraits.

Leigh from Regal Rocks had brought along some stunning pieces from her collection and we were all loving the finishing touch they gave to the bridal outfits.

Sam looked amazing in the formal wear from Stewart Highland.  Kilts are traditional but it is really nice to see a groom in a gorgeous suit and we loved these two that Ewan sent along for us.

We've always loved the bouquets we've seen from Pretty Little Flowers and it was really nice to work with Elaine again.  Her work set off this shoot perfectly.

Thanks also to the Parsonage for hosting the shoot.  It's a venue that has everything you need with rooms to get ready in, a beautiful big house, lovely grounds and big marquees for the party later at night.


Mutley's Snaps - Finlay and Flo's photoshoot.

If you follow us on Facebook or Instagram you'll know that we recently got our little Dachshund puppy Flo.  She was 18 weeks this Friday and she's a little bundle of naughty!! She does give awesome cuddles though so she gets away with it.

Although we are photographers, we're people photographers and animals are a whole other ball game.  Our friend Ewan owns Mutley's Snaps Pet Photography in Falkirk and we couldn't wait to get into his studio with our little fur babies and have their photos done.  Ewan's work is absolutely stunning!  We all thought a trade of services would work out really well for us, we'd get gorgeous portraits and Ewan would get some behind the scenes images of him at work.

What we really wanted from the session was a photo of Finlay and Flo together.  We thought this was going to be mission impossible and told Ewan this but he didn't seem fazed by the task at all!  We came away thinking we knew we had lots of gorgeous photos of them individually and if there was one of them together it would just be a bonus.  Well, that night Ewan sent us the cutest, most gorgeous image of Finlay and Flo sitting together on one of his chair props.  We were totally over the moon! It now has pride of place in our living room.  Yip, we don't let our photos rot on a USB - photos are made for printing and enjoying every day :) 

To start with Ewan let the dogs get used to him - hot dog treats works wonders.  Then he started with Flo up on his stage with the pretty pink backdrop for some individual portraits.   There was lots to keep the dogs attention - peanut butter, bubbles, toys, silly noises.  We have tried and failed on a few occasions to get Finlay our 9 year old border collie onto our own studio for a picture but he just hated it.  Ewan worked his magic and we've got such great images of him that we never imagined we'd be able to get.

If you're looking for pet portraits, Ewan is definitely the guy to go to.  He works so hard to make sure he gets the shots, and because his studio is in Falkirk he's perfectly placed for anyone in the Central Scotland belt, but we'd say he is worth the drive for anyone further afield too.

Mansfield Traquair Wedding // Jayne & Ross

We'll always remember this wedding as just being so absolutely stunning.  We felt right at home because there were past bride and grooms aswell as people who we've done family shoots for there, and everyone else made us feel so welcome.  

The Mansfield Traquair is breathtaking.  When you drive past and see the red doors you have no idea what is waiting inside and it literally makes you stop and take it all in when you step through.

Morning preparations went well and everyone was feeling excited.  We all couldn't wait to see Jayne in her Jenny Packham dress as it looked beautiful on the hanger.  Due to timings we had to leave for the venue before Jayne got her dress on so it was as lovely for us to see her step out of the car.

The ceremony set against the fairy light backdrop was beautiful and the family photos afterwards went without any hitches.   The best men were on top form gathering everyone up for us.

We stayed within the garden at Mansfield Traquair for Jayne and Ross' bridal portraits but after dinner we took them out for some street photography and we love those too.

Here are some of our favourite images from the day.

Eskmills Wedding Venue // Ruth & Liam

Ruth and Liam got in touch with us last year about photographing their wedding at Eskmills Wedding Venue, and we were really looking forward to it because it was going to be our first time there.  It's always really nice to go to a venue for the first time and create new images.

The day started off with bride and groom preparations and both mornings went really well.  Ruth had all her bridesmaid and flower girls there with her and there was lots of buzz and excitement.  Ruth was quite nervous but she handled it well and looked absolutely beautiful.  There were some familiar faces at this wedding and it's always really nice to catch up with people we've worked with before.

The ceremony was conducted by Kirsty Harvey, who we always enjoy spending time with.  She's so cool and quirky and really brings your story to life.

The weather wasn't on our side when it came to family photos so we decided to stay indoors and use the fairy lights as a backdrop which worked really well for the more formal portraits.  We kept an eye out for a break in the rain and grabbed Ruth and Liam when we saw a window of opportunity just before dinner for their portrait session.  We did as much as we could in the time we had but we hoped to get them back out again after they'd eaten, and thankfully the rain went completely off and we got some more shots later on.

Here are some of our favourites from the day.

Arta, Glasgow wedding // Jacqueline & Jason

We have huge heart eyes for this wedding! Back in the summer Jacqueline and Jason got married at Arta in Glasgow, and looking over the images for this blog reminded us how amazing a day it was.  It's in our top 3 favourites of this year :)

The day started off with prep at each of their parents houses.  Jen C was there to make up the girls and Jennifer Thomson created their gorgeous hair do's.  Jacqueline's dress was stunning.  We do love a blush pink wedding gown! 

A white cab brought Jacqueline and her dad to Arta, where Kirsty Harvey conducted a beautiful humanist ceremony.  It was really emotional, and in the atmospheric surrounding of Arta we all felt how much Jacqueline and Jason love each other.

Afterwards we did some family photos out on the street before taking our gorgeous couple away for their bridal portraits.  They look so good together that several passers by thought they were models out on a fashion shoot.

After dinner, we took them back out and headed onto Buchanan Street, where they became celebrities amongst the tourists who all wanted to have a photo with them.  We had so much fun and got some more lovely images.

The first dance at Arta is just gorgeous as the staff throw hand picked rose petals down on the couple, it's just so romantic! 

Here are some of our favourite images from the day.

Kirknewton House Stables wedding // Ingham & Kevin

We had a fantastic time at our first wedding at Kirknewton House Stables.  We'd visited the venue with Ingham and Kevin a few months before the day to have a look around and took some pre-wedding photos to get an idea of what we might do on the day.  So we did have a plan of sorts in our minds.  The only thing we can't plan for is the weather, and in typical Scottish style we didn't have a typical summer's day.  Despite being the end of July it was rainy and foggy. 

The day started with bridal preparations at nearby Norton House which was great as there was plenty space for everyone to get ready and it was only a 10 minute journey to the venue.  The guys got ready at Ingham and Kevin's house and headed to the venue in plenty time to greet the arriving guests.  It was a lovely humanist ceremony, and the fairy light backdrop is so beautiful in the images.  After the ceremony we decided to just keep an eye on the weather and nip in and out when we could.  There was a small break in the rain and we managed to get through the list of family photos the couple wanted but unfortunately it was shortlived and everyone moved back inside to mingle.  

Speeches took place before everyone ate and we heard some great stories about the couple and there was even a maths test in best man Lee's speech because it's not Kevin's strong point even though he works for a bank!  It was all very entertaining.

After dinner the weather was still looking a bit grim but we spoke with Ingham and Kevin and thankfully they trusted us and agreed that beautiful wedding images are more important than having a pristine dress hanging up in the wardrobe.  We absolutely love what we came away with and think the mist adds a lot of atmosphere to the pictures.  

We loved their Colin the Caterpillar wedding cake!

Here are some of our favourite images from the day.

House for An Art Lover wedding // Lauren & James

Lauren and her mum came to our studio to book us for Lauren's House for An Art Lover wedding after seeing a previous blog of another wedding we'd done there.  We absolutely love this venue, and we knew we'd look forward to the day as Lauren and her mum were so lovely.  Lauren lives in London with James and so a lot of people travelled up for the wedding and everyone had a fantastic time.

We started off with bridal prep at Lauren's parent's house.  Lana from Cameo Bridal Styling made an amazing look with Hollywood waves on Lauren and the bridesmaids and Mum's hair all looked stunning.  Lana's work is always so swoon-worthy!  Stephanie Graham complimented the look with gorgeous make up.

It was a nice registrar ceremony and once they were made husband and wife we headed out for a few group shots with family before moving on to the bridal portrait session.  There are so many great spots at House for An Art Lover both inside and on the grounds that we're spoiled for choice.  The great thing about a summer wedding is that there's still plenty of light after dinner to head back out for some evening light and by then the couple are much more relaxed and we can have a bit of fun - I'm sure Lauren and James never imagined they'd be playing on a swing set in their wedding outfits but they did and we had such a laugh with it! 

Here are some of our favourite shots from the day.



St Michael's Church & Carlowrie Castle Wedding // Rhian & David

This was a beautiful wedding.  St Michael's church is a stunning place to get married and Carlowrie Castle has everything you need for your photos and gorgeous backdrops.  

Rhian looked amazing in her silk wedding gown and the guys looked fab in their kilts.  We loved the big red bus Rhian and David hired to transport their guests between venues and we also thought the pizza cabin at night was a fantastic idea.  

The day started off with prep photos for both the bride and groom and then we worked together from the ceremony onwards.  The main focus of this wedding was for candid photos as Rhian and David really didn't want many posed shots.

Here are some of our favourites.

Hamilton Park Racecourse Wedding // Claire & Kieran

Back in June we photographed this really fun wedding.  Claire and Kieran were married at Hamilton Park racecourse and we had such a great time with them.  Their wee girl Skye is just so adorable!  We were firm friends by the end of the day :) There were a few obstacles in our way with road works and torrential rain but in the couple of dry spots we got we think they got lovely images.  Claire really wanted an outdoor ceremony and they were so lucky that it stayed off with *just* enough time for them to sign the marriage schedule and then run back down the aisle! 

The girls got ready at Claire and Kieran's flat with Lyn Mackenzie on hair and makeup, and Bryan captured the boys once they arrived at the venue.  We had a campervan take us to Hamilton Park and the ceremony, conducted by Norrie Flowers, was outside in front of the weighing room.   As the rain started to pelt down everyone headed indoors for drinks and canapes while we kept a keen eye on the weather to get family groups and bridal portraits done.  

Dinner was served in the marquee and Claire and Kieran had gone for a really cool film themed decor.

Here are some of our favourites from their day! 

Siân and Family // Adult Cake Smash!!

We can without a doubt say this was the most fun session we have ever photographed!  When Siân got in touch with us through Facebook, she said she had an idea for a photoshoot she would like to do for her 30th birthday and could we help?  Hell yes!

The day started off with Siân in Lynsey's make up chair at Viva Beauty in Brightons.  It really does make a difference getting your makeup professionally done for a photoshoot and Siân looked absolutely gorgeous. 

We met up in the car park at Cockleroy and instantly we all clicked and knew the shoot was going to go really well.  Wee April wasn't even unclipped from her car seat and she was chatting away!  We loved the two girls, they're so cute.

We started the session with some family photos.  As usual we set off on a wee walk and photographed Siân, Charlie and the girls having a lovely time being together.  They were great in front of the camera and so natural which was great for us, we hardly had to give them any pointers at all.  We were mega impressed at Siân walking up the hill in those heels!

Once we were happy we had some nice family images for them we moved to a quiet spot and set up for the main purpose of the shoot.......cake smash! We've never done a cake smash before so we were all kind of winging it but Siân had put lots of effort in with her outfit, balloons, baking a cake and chalk board that it all fell into place itself.  It was SO MUCH FUN!! Here are some of our favourites from the session.

Balbirnie House Wedding // Nikki & Steven

Today Nikki & Steven picked up their gorgeous wedding album and we realised we'd not blogged their images yet.  We really love Balbirnie House weddings and we always have a great time there.  Nikki and Steven both got ready at the venue which was fantastic as it gives us so much more time with not having to travel between locations.  The pearl suite at Balbirnie is just fantastic for photos, it's beautiful and light with plenty of space for everyone.  It was great to work with Cameo Bridal Styling doing the ladies hair and Sophie Alexis MakeUp creating their stunning looks.

Graeme McKay gave a fantastic Humanist ceremony which we always enjoy as it feels like we know our couples so much more after hearing a bit about how they got together, and some stories about what they've gotten up to! 

After the ceremony it was raining A LOT.  So we decided to put off family formals in the hope it would clear later on but went ahead with some portraits in and around the house with our bride and groom.  We did manage to get out for some shots on the lawn too and in the courtyard which gave some nice variety to the set.

Thankfully the rain did stop for a bit after dinner so we got some family shots on the front steps of the house and a couple more of Nikki and Steven.

Nikki and Steven and their families were so fantastic to work with - they are great fun and we could tell they were all really enjoying their day.

Here are some favourites! 

Family shoots - how they should be!

You know those family portrait sessions you go to where you all wear your best clothes, or maybe you all go for denim and white tshirts, and you pose against a white backdrop or you maybe go on location and all sit on a wall/log/stand in a line?  You desperately try to get the two year old to smile and look at the camera, and then when he/she does granny is blinking?  We all really love those experiences don't we?.............nah, us neither!! It's stressful for the family and stressful for the photographer.  

The best memories of family days out are from long walks, lots of happy smiles, the sun coming through the trees, the kids squealing in joy, the two year old falling into a mucky puddle and everyone laughing about it.  Capture that!! Those are the memories you want to come flooding back, not the stress of a staged family formal.

We love to get outdoors, and we love to photograph families being families.  As in, letting them just do what they do, we're not there to set anything up or have a list of shots to get through.  Please DO NOT send us your Pinterest board of photos you'd like to get during your session - what's the chances of your kids actually doing what you expect them to?  Slim to none!  Wouldn't you rather see a genuine image of them?  The time that they did really smile at their brother/sister saying something inappropriate, or mum running away from a buzzy bee?  

What does a family shoot with us entail?  Well, we go for a walk.  That's it! Yes, we'll try to get one of you all together smiling and having a good time, but if it's not one of you all looking and smiling at the camera, no biggie.  We really prefer genuine interactions and so our method is just to keep shooting while you play with the kids, walk hand in hand, do the things that make your family yours.  It doesn't stop there though.  Once you get your image files what are you going to do with them?  If you've got old CD's of photos you'll know they are now practically defunct! Hard drives can fail and then you've lost all your photos.  Please get them printed.  The best way to display this type of family shoot is to put them into an album - that way you can really tell the story through the images.  You really get that emotional connection through actually holding your photos in your hands and seeing them printed in high quality - you just don't get that from a computer screen.

Yesterday, we had the Wolfe family who were visiting from America for a family shoot and it was fantastic.  We clicked with them from the minute we stepped out of our cars; the kids Tessa and Gavin are super sweet, Kurt and Cassie are beautiful together, and it was just a big hit all round.  

Here are some of our favourites from our time with them.



Carlowrie Castle Wedding // Nicola & Blair

Last month we photographed the gorgeous wedding of Nicola and Blair at Carlowrie Castle.  We were really excited for our first time at this venue and it certainly didn't disappoint!  We were really pleased to be back there a couple of weeks later for Rhian and David's wedding which we'll also blog once they receive their images.

The day started off with preparations at the parents houses and everything went well and to plan.  Nicola's Dad was at the venue first thing to oversee the marquee as it's his own business and it was absolutely stunning.  Once he came back the girls were ready to get into the limo to head to the castle and finish getting ready there.  I was lucky enough to ride with them in the limo and managed to get some lovely shots.  Bryan had a great morning with the guys - they were really chilled out and Bryan fitted right in - there was some definite bromance going on with Bryan and Blair -but that only makes for a great day and we all felt so at ease with each other which made great images.  We feel so privileged to be photographing weddings and when we click so much with a couple it really is the icing on the cake for us.

Carlowrie Castle has a stunning apartment downstairs which the girls were using to get dressed and finish off hair and make up and it meant they were well out of the way when the guys arrived.  It was great weather so they got lots of time outside to greet guests and get some pictures taken.

It was a humanist ceremony conducted by Peter MacDonald, and we make no secret of the fact we love humanist weddings.  They are so personal and we really feel we know the couple so much more afterwards.

The grounds are fantastic for photo opportunites and after the formal family groups we took Nicola and Blair for a quick portrait session before they were called into dinner.  The table set up was gorgeous and the speeches were lovely.  After the main course there was a surprise for everyone as Nicola and Blair had organised singing waiters and they were fantastic! The whole room was up on their feet singing and dancing - at first we said we'll get a few shots of them singing but we stayed for the whole set as they were so good! 

Corra were the band for the evening and again they were fantastic and our gorgeous couple had a beautiful first dance.

We also worked alongside Big Day Movies for the first time.

Here are some of our favourite images from the day.