Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie: Blog https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog en-us (C) Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie (Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) Mon, 16 Mar 2020 06:58:00 GMT Mon, 16 Mar 2020 06:58:00 GMT https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/img/s/v-12/u330187713-o270452062-50.jpg Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie: Blog https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog 90 120 Kris + Katharine // Cromer Beach // Mariposa Photography https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2016/6/kris-katharine I've been beyond bad at blogging this past year, what with the flat renovation that seems to have gone on and on. But I have stirred myself to tell you about a wedding I shot at the start of June because it was a bit different and more than a bit special.

I've known Katharine for what must be about 15 years so when she and her lovely husband-to-be Kris got in touch and asked if I'd like to shoot their super small and at that point secret wedding at Cromer in Norfolk I jumped at the chance. Googling the place revealed a lovely seafront and a long pier. Photographic jackpot!

The morning of the big day dawned dark and forbidding. An insidious sea fret so thick that the pier was no more than a murky outline crept down my neck as I hunted for locations. However, the forecast promised bright sunshine and so I girded up my lenses and hoofed it over to North Lodge Park for the ceremony.

Your average wedding party tends to be between 70 and 100 people (more than that and I start wishing for a megaphone and/or lassie to round everyone up). Katharine and Kris' day was 12 all in - just family, including Kris' crazy funny twins Imogen and Zachary. No fuss (or very minimal). Everyone turned up together. Beautiful outfits, glasses of fizz, buttonholes on and... the sun came out.

The (very bright) ceremony was held in the garden (and skyped for everyone back home). Hugely emotional and just so full of joy. Poor Imogen was so absolutely overcome (with happiness I should point out) that she spent the proceedings howling like a banshee. A quick legal repeat indoors with just Katharine's brothers and sister and it was time for lots of family shots in the garden. Thank goodness for Dee who marshalled the order with sergeant-majorly precision. Who knew there could be so many combinations - I learn something every day :-)

After that I dragged K&K off for some shots along the seafront and a bit of a breather. It's always lovely to watch the public at these times - everyone is so damn pleased for the happy couple. We wandered from the beach huts at one end back to the pier to rejoin the family. The light got prettier and prettier. Everything was very mellow.

I smiled all the way through that afternoon. I smiled all the way through editing. I hope you like the results x

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) cromer herts london mariposa photography wedding https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2016/6/kris-katharine Sun, 26 Jun 2016 10:12:19 GMT
Jenny + Michael // Suma Park, Victoria // Mariposa Photography - Part 2 https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2015/2/McVassie_wedding2 I won't burden you with more words for the 2nd part of this blog... if you've read the first part then you'll know that in December I shot my beautiful sister Jenny marrying the man of her dreams... here's the final instalment of the photos - a little fieldwork, some beautiful speeches and a kick-arse first dance :-)

 

 

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2015/2/McVassie_wedding2 Wed, 04 Feb 2015 21:50:40 GMT
Jenny + Michael // Suma Park, Victoria // Mariposa Photography - Part 1 https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2015/2/McVassie_wedding1 I don't think there can possibly be a prouder moment in a girl's life than to watch her little sister float down the aisle in acres of white lace to marry the best guy in the world. Except for if she gets to shoot it too. Then it's perfect.

Jenny and Michael got engaged in summer 2013 (the story and shots of which can be found here) in the UK on a visit from Melbourne, where Jen has made her home for the last decade. Very sensibly they opted to have an almost-Christmas wedding in 2014, which in Oz doesn't mean themes of red, green and white, fur stoles and decorative welly boots - it means sunshine, summer dresses and more fizz than you can shake a soggy stick at.

There was no way I could watch anyone else shoot the big day - when you get hitched the only person you see more than your wedding photographer is the person you're actually marrying. What I didn't bargain for is the amount that I'd cry. 

The day, after a week of horror thunderstorms, low temps and mild to severe panic attacks, dawned bright and clear and the temperature began to rise. The champagne flowed, the lovely hair and makeup girls worked wonders and the bride and her best mates were soon giggling away. Over the road Michael and his homies swilled beer and doubled checked they had the required footwear / readings / rings. And rehearsed shampoo commercials. Don't ask.

One vintage busride (bridal party) and old steam train ride (everyone else) later, everyone converged at Queenscliffe for the ceremony. Horribly bright light. Beautiful vows. Seriously, I sobbed so hard I could barely hold the camera still. Goodness knows what will become of the video as I was standing next to the cam and all that's going to be audible is the photographer blowing her nose. Classy.

A walk along the beach for shots and another train ride (a-mazing, people. This is deffo the way to travel) the whole party stopped at Suma Park vineyard and ... well... partied. Properly! It was a real DIY affair. Jenny had been working to make decorations and details for months, my darling mama and my new-kindof-mama-in-law Wendy sewed hundreds of metres of white bunting, Michael's sister Kate did the flowers, his muso papa set up the sound (respect!), my papa gave a speech that made everyone's mascara run and I... well, I ordered everyone around and drank a lot of fizz. Situation normal then. I reckon one of the best bits was when the B&G gave up their sappy Wet Wet Wet first dance half way through, grabbed the mic (Jen) and guitar (Michael) and gave it some serious funk with a cover of Eddie Bo and Inez Cheetham's 'A Lover and a Friend', before handing it over to the evening's band, the ridiculously talented Deep Street Soul.

I tell you the truth... I have never ever seen my sister look so beautiful. I have never seen her look so happy. I've never been to a wedding I've loved so much. I've never been so exhausted and hungover the next day (it's true, I showered in sunglasses). And I'm so happy to have a new brother in law - and a new extra family!

I normally choose somewhere about 80 photos to tell the story of a wedding. You're going to have to indulge me on this one occasion - there are a few more than that... so many that my site host has made me split the blog! Folks, this was one of the best days of my whole life... am so happy to share these shots!

... and when you're done, head to http://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2015/2/McVassie_wedding2 for the 2nd instalment!

 

 

Part 2: http://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2015/2/McVassie_wedding2

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) herts london mariposa melbourne photography wedding https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2015/2/McVassie_wedding1 Tue, 03 Feb 2015 14:13:14 GMT
Walkman wedding! https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2015/1/walkman-wedding I met Chris and Lou a couple of years back at a big winter house party in the Highlands. It was predictably sub zero outside so we all equally predictably stayed inside, got drunk and fought over who got to sit next to the fire. The three of us hit it off like nobody's business - at my advanced age I have little time for those who aren't kind, funny, intelligent and thoughtful. Chris and Lou ticked all of my boxes with plenty to spare. They instantly became my new go-to hosts whenever I'm up in Edinburgh (oftener than you'd think).

We met up in London in 2013 at the tail end of their summer tour of France, and Lou was flashing some brand new sparkly bling on her finger - turns out Chris had got down on one knee in a pretty chateau and proposed. In French. "Oh la la!" you might say. However, one should always make sure that one's intended understands a language before using it to ask life-altering questions. Ergo the first response was "Huh???" Happily, the linguistic obstacles were overcome and the second response was a resounding yes.

The Walkmans tied the knot at big grey Melville Castle outside the Burgh at the end of November. The weather was pretty dubious but the atmosphere inside couldn't have been sunnier. The beautiful bride abandoned once and for all her habitual (and understandable) nerves at having my huge lens stuck in her face and floated down the aisle in a cloud of smiles and lace. The groom quite obviously couldn't believe his luck and had to take a moment out in order to scrape his jaw off the floor. A brilliantly funny ceremony followed (laughed so hard I nearly dropped the cam) with a touching lace and tartan handfasting and truly beautiful vows.

I need not say that the day - and the party that followed - were top notch. The shots speak for themselves. 

Sometimes as a wedding photographer you have to bust your arse to get the best out of people. Sometimes the best is right there in front of you and all you need to do is press the shutter. Here are some of my favourites - I hope you like them.

Oh PS: the pointy thing that keeps turning up... definitely not my fault :-)

 

 
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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) Castle Edinburgh Melville herts london mariposa photography wedding https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2015/1/walkman-wedding Fri, 02 Jan 2015 19:02:57 GMT
Autumn shoot with two awesome little buttons! https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/11/autumn-shoot Sometimes everything just comes together: the air is crisp but not too cold, the afternoon sunlight is just the right strength and colour, the leaves crackle underfoot and the location kicks arse. Add to all this a really lovely family at the top of their game. It's magic!

Ana, Kev and their two wee monkeys, Ethan and Rory, came to meet me at the beautiful ruins of Sopwell Nunnery in St Albans on Saturday. They'd arrived before me and the boys were throwing the new wooden airplanes their papa had made for them (come on, hands up who wants one - even now??). We started with hide and seek...

"OK... Mummy and Daddy will count. You guys hide and... er.... I'll take pictures of you hiding, ok?"  

"OK!"

(God love the under 5s)

I don't know what Ana and Kev had given their pair before the shoot but they were preternaturally cooperative, unfailingly happy and up for everything I suggested with no cajoling required. It was completely amazing! Endless opportunities and everyone looking in the same direction and laughing whenever required (btw this practically never happens, esp with young kids in the mix). I swear, if I could bottle Saturday I'd make a million by Christmas.

I always love shooting with these guys - they're an absolute blast. And so without further ado, here are some of my faves...

Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans Autumn Family photoshoot, St Albans

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/11/autumn-shoot Wed, 05 Nov 2014 21:49:55 GMT
Levitation photography and gratuitous balloons - a tutorial https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/8/levitation-photography-tutorial I confess to being slightly addicted to levitation photography lately. I had a bash in Southwold and ended up with my models looking like they could leap 10 feet from a standing start (pretty cool. Need to post those)... however I wanted to try my hand at something a bit more fun... and what could be more fun than 40 rainbow balloons, a pretty girl and yellowed late summer fields?

I persuaded a good friend (and wonderful model) Alicia and her fella Tony to come over and help me make the experiment... Here's one of the finished shots: 

Levitation photography tutorial

I just love the story it tells. When I posted it on Facebook last night I got enough messages saying 'how the hell do you do that??' that, on top of the Southwold session, I thought I'd demystify levitation shots and prove they doesn't take much in the way in the brains - just patience and basic ability with Photoshop layers. I don't propose to make an actual Photoshop  / Elements tutorial - there are enough around already... just thought I'd share the workflow for a levitation shoot! 

 

1) Work out what you want to achieve. This might sound basic and it is... make sketches (doesn't matter if they're crap - it's about working out what goes where). Think about the logistics. The shoot is going to easily take you an afternoon from start to finish. Think about location. Think about where the light's going to be coming from. Think about shadows.

 

2a) Set up a trial for the posing. Number one objective - keep your model safe. We took a regular stepladder and clamped a couple of pieces of wood to it - and to stakes we hammered in the ground. Two triangles are suddenly a lot safer and Alicia had absolutely no problem standing on one leg right on the top (if your model doesn't have a cracking sense of balance either cover the ground in crash mats or rethink your plans and consider 5 inch levitation rather than two feet! We had fun trying to sort out where tension would sit in the body if Alicia was trying to fly away and Tony was trying to bring her down. Lots of play-acting and a certain amount of whooping :-)

Levitation photography tutorial

 

2b) Blow up a shed load of balloons. Find something heavy that you can tie them to so that they don't make an instant break for freedom in the fresh air. Much hilarity.

Levitation photography tutorial

 

3) Get out to your location (ours was deliciously nearby as they had obligingly not cut the hay on Harpenden common) and work out which way the wind is blowing. You're going to need:

Camera

Tripod

Shutter release cable (I bought one for a couple of quid off Amazon)

Stepladder, wood supports, clamps and a mallet

 

4) Put up stepladder (leave off the supports for the moment unless v wobbly - you only need it there a second) and mark where the legs sit. Get someone to stand on the ladder where you'll need to focus on them. Set focus then switch to manual focus and leave it the hell alone. The only work you're going to do with the camera from now on is press the shutter release button. For the record I shot this on a Canon f2.8 24-70mm IS lens on a 5D mk3 at ISO 160, 24mm, f3.2 1/400 sec.

 

5) Take away ladder and shoot the scene with nothing there at all (actually there's a very small dogwalker, they don't matter. They're not going to appear in final image). This is going to be your background layer in Photoshop.

6) Put up ladder, make it safe this time. Model climbs the ladder and finds a pose that are going to work for the ultimate image. Think about the lines of the arms and legs and the balloon string. Despair that the balloons have somehow plaited themselves together in the wind. Swear loudly as the wind changes direction.

 

7) Make your shots. Yes you've just taken a lovely photo of a ladder. It's going to go away.

Levitation photography tutorial

 

8) Pack up, come home (via the pub) load up your images and decide on your favourites. To make each image you need one background (the same each time unless you were a plonker and moved the camera) and one balloon shot.

 

9) Put your two images into Photoshop / Photoshop Elements. Layer the balloon shot on top of the background. And here's the sneaky bit: you put a 'mask' on the top layer (the balloons) and basically rub out the stepladder. The layer goes transparent and you see the nice clear background shot that's behind. You can see that's what I'm doing here:

 

And so you get your image of floating girl, minus DIY paraphenalia...

Levitation photography tutorial

 

Finally, I added a few colour filters over the top of the combined image, to make it more Mariposa.

You can see it's not perfect - she's still fairly obviously standing. If I'd planned further I'd have had her stand on the other foot, point the first, and then photoshop that in. The light catches the bottom of her feet slightly bizarrely. And If I could have got her above the treeline (it was too high and we were too low) and into the sky I could have done what the heck I wanted with her... had her fly 20 metres above the land. But we get what we get. Next time I'll know more and will plan more. So there you go... It's great fun and is merely a bit fiddly and time-consuming rather than impossibly hard... and looks rather snazzy. Hope it inspires you to have a bash sometime!!

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) balloons harpenden herts levitation pre-wedding tutorial https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/8/levitation-photography-tutorial Mon, 25 Aug 2014 15:25:35 GMT
Kate and Liam's wedding in Kimpton https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/8/kate-and-liams-wedding Kate met Liam in a bar almost exactly two years ago. It became obvious within a few weeks that here was someone pretty special - the big, handsome manly guy we all dream of - who sees us for who we are, flaws and all, and adores us anyway. So they hung out a bit. Then a lot. Then they moved in together (nice place!)... then one day a few months later Liam overcame a most gigantic hangover (he can tell that story) and whisked his lovely lady off for a posh minibreak... and put some BLING on her finger!

When they asked me if I'd shoot their wedding I jumped up and down and squealed a lot. I've known Kate since I was ridiculously small.... distinctly remember several play dates involving My Little Pony. Enough said. We rediscovered each other only a couple of years ago - she owns a kick-ass marketing company http://www.kewmarketing.com/ and needed some head shots. The rest is, as they say, fizz-soaked history.

Arrived at Kate's papa's lovely, light-filled house on the morning of the big day to find everyone chilling with bubbles and getting dolled up. Fell completely in love with Kate's little nieces (you'll see shots). I do love getting ready time... calm / frantic / insane. It's always different. It's always fun.

Gorgeous and super-touching ceremony (they got told off for snogging before it had even started) at St Albans Registry Office. Lots of smiles and tears. It's hard as a photographer when you're welling up too and can't spare a hand to dry your eyes (happens often). Worse though when you're crying with laughter and nearly drop the camera (also happens often - which is why I love my job!)... Registrars always (and it must be said, very sweetly) give a similar spiel when they hand over the marriage certificate... it goes to the person in charge (the bride) - then she hands it over to the 'most responsible' (or somesuch variation) man in her life... which is normally the groom. Except that this time the bride didn't even pause to think, and handed it straight to her papa. How sweet??? Cue total collapse and hysteria of entire room. You'll see the shots where it happened.

After dodging the raindrops we all zoomed over to Kimpton Memorial Hall. Group photos when it keeps raining ain't easy.

Sun shines.

"Everybody out!"

Drizzle starts

"Argh! Everyone in!"

Repeat ad infinitum...

The happy couple had outdone themselves with tons of beautiful handmade decorations. And... wow... a cake table. Not content with one cake, Kate had baked her own, they'd invited a round dozen of bakers to present their wares for the guests' delectation. Dessert time was treat time is all I can say.

Kate and Liam, you're the most amazing and together pair. You were obviously always destined for one another and I'm so happy to be part of your life - and I can't wait to see what crazy stuff you get up to next! 

Here are a few of my favourite shots from the day...

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) herts kimpton london mariposa photography pre-wedding https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/8/kate-and-liams-wedding Sat, 02 Aug 2014 20:09:16 GMT
Ella & Matt's Brighton Wedding (complete with aerobatics display) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/7/ella_matt-brighton It's not unusual for a papa to contribute generously to make his beloved daughter's big day a really special one, but this was the first time I've been given as a present brother to brother. When my friends Alison and Rich got in touch to tell me that they'd in effect be wrapping a big pink bow around me and my kit and posting me down to Brighton to capture Rich's brother Matt marrying his beautiful sweetheart Ella... well I was kind of excited.

My excitement, it turned out, was entirely justified.

Travelling down from London on the morning of the wedding amid endless threatening clouds and even darker prognostications of storms and flooding I wondered what in heaven's name I'd signed up for... Arrived at the seaside hotel to find a preternaturally relaxed bride to be and her mama and two lovely sisters sipping coffee and having their hair done 60s style. Their calm somehow transmitted itself to the forecast and the sun came out and stayed out... a LOT.

Ella travelled to Brighton Bandstand (honestly, could the day get any cooler?) in a lime green vintage VW campervan (the traffic was so bad thanks to the Lovebox festival I wondered if I'd be getting there after her... possibly even after the ceremony), floated up the steps and into Matt's arms. The pair of them grinned like mirror image Cheshire Cats all day. Gorgeous and touching ceremony then everyone headed down towards the beach for a few fun group shots. At which point the day got cooler. Ella is an air traffic controller (so is Matt actually... I leave you to guess how they met)... and she'd secretly arranged for a flying-instructor friend of hers to put on a natty display for us.

Oh, and then we played ping pong.

This pair are pretty damn amazing people. They overflow with love and happiness, and although it was only the second time I'd spent any serious length of time with them they drew me into their day and filled me with their happy energy.

One more cool thing, before I let you cast your eye further down to the shots... neither of them, they confessed, are much inclined to get down and boogie (at least sober and in public), and the idea of a stumbling first dance in front of 90-odd people filled them with the kind of dread normally associated with annual appraisals and prolonged dental surgery... so they'd decided (another surprise) to get up on stage (uh huh... WAY less scary people) and sing Johnny Cash and June Carter's amazing duet - Jackson.

I don't need to tell you that they rocked it, do I?

Anyway, here are some of my favourite shots from the day. Hope you like too!

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/7/ella_matt-brighton Tue, 29 Jul 2014 21:21:32 GMT
Au revoir my dear friends!! https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/7/bye-bye-friends
My all-time favourite mini model Isabel (if you follow my shoots even a very little you'll have seen her) and her family (who I count among my dearest friends in the world) are disappearing off to Abu Dhabi this summer to start a new life.
 
I'm in complete denial. 
 
As of this weekend, David and Rhonda are going to have to endure a couple of ghastly months separated while one starts a new job and sets up said new life and the other winds down the old, so I lugged the old cam over when invited for a (droolsome) Sunday roast (Rhonda, maybe you could fedex me roasties when I get desperate) and did a very unofficial family shoot so they'd all have some current shots to enjoy during David's absence.
 
Gonna miss those guys. Although Rhonda and the kids aren't leaving for a couple of months (watch out for a final Isabel shoot) and I must tell you here that they've already bribed me into going to visit with tales of oases at dawn and Bedouin trips. Oh twist my arm. I'll book my ticket :-)
 
Anyway here are a few of my faves... I think they celebrate everything that's good about fun, family and love. Hope you like too x
 
Family shoot, Hertfordshire. Family shoot, Hertfordshire. Family shoot, Hertfordshire. Family shoot, Hertfordshire. Family shoot, Hertfordshire. Family shoot, Hertfordshire. Family shoot, Hertfordshire. Family shoot, Hertfordshire. Family shoot, Hertfordshire. Family shoot, Hertfordshire. Family shoot, Hertfordshire. Family shoot, Hertfordshire. Family shoot, Hertfordshire. Family shoot, Hertfordshire.
 
 
 
 
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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/7/bye-bye-friends Mon, 28 Jul 2014 10:19:53 GMT
Chris and Louise's Edinburgh Engagement Shoot https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/6/Walkman I met Chris and Lou a little over a year ago now, at a big house party up up up north in snowy Scotland. Instant, massive click. Hours of gasbagging... and by the time we broke camp I'd acquired two awesome new friends. They've become my go-to hosts whenever I'm up in Edinburgh, and I'll never (even if I try) forget attending their Christmas BBQ in a howling December gale.

Anyway, Chris got down on one knee last summer during a road trip around France... he apparently proposed in French, to the bemusement of his intended, who didn't have the foggiest what he was asking :-) Ah... these things are never simple. Anyway, they must have overcome the language barrier as the next time I saw her she had her bling on... and an enormous grin.

I'm super excited that they've asked me to both come to their wedding, and shoot it (I know some people prefer to do one or the other, but I personally love doing both as it means I get to talk to absolutely EVERYONE - and party after I'm done with the shoot) - they've going to be tying the knot in a castle in November. I am not ridiculously excited at all...

A couple of weekends ago I popped up north for a catch up and their engagement shoot. We took a stroll along the river and discovered that Lou does an excellent projection of serene beauty, while Chris got his smug on that he nailed posing pretty much first go.

Here are some of my faves.... Hope you like! x

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/6/Walkman Sun, 01 Jun 2014 12:40:09 GMT
Dawn at Southwold #2 https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/5/dawn-at-southwold-2 If you read www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/5/Southwolddawn then you'll know that I broke a habit of a lifetime and staggered out of bed at 4.30am on the Mayday bank holiday along with my two beautiful models, Alicia and Dee and my co-photographer Alan. We raced along to the dunes on Southwold beach and caught some lovely images as the sun came up. 

 

However, we didn't stop there. The light was clear and bright and fresh and begging for more photography. What better time to pop on a sparkly frock and throw some shapes? To the astonishment of the occasional (well wrapped up) dogwalker... that's exactly what we did. Alan and Dee peeled off to shoot by the (argh! freezing!) waves while Alicia and I stayed well away and got in touch with our inner Herbal Essences. Enjoy!

 

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/5/dawn-at-southwold-2 Wed, 28 May 2014 09:59:09 GMT
Eliza's First Birthday shoot https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/5/elizas-first-birthday-shoot My little almost-niece Eliza (who is to me always and forever going to be Dribble due to her predilection for chewing on my shoulder while long strands of drool slide off my elbow... you get the picture. She's going to hate me for telling you that when she's older) turned one last month. And what with my commitments, my best mate (her mama JP)'s commitments and the general crapness of the so-called English Spring her birthday shoot got postponed and postponed ... until today.

The plan was to head out on to the Common, which is currently a heaven (except for hayfever sufferers) of long grass, dandelions and michelmas daisies, inflate a lot of rainbow balloons with helium (with a bit left over for ridiculous voiceovers), tie them to a big basket and generally use an UP sort of theme to give the shoot some shape.

And as it's bank holiday I think we all know what the weather did. 

Yup.

Downpour.

Cue rethink. No one-year-old is going to appreciate freezing her (bubblegum pink) socks off in the driving rain. Hence we engaged in a bit of furniture adjustment and shot in my dining room. It wasn't ideal but certainly better than the alternative.

I think you'll agree JP and Dribble are an absolute delight together - I could have only wished that Stevo had been free to make it a trio. Next time Boyo... next time!

Here are my faves from the afternoon... and btw I got to keep the red balloons :-)

 

1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot 1st Birthday shoot

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/5/elizas-first-birthday-shoot Mon, 26 May 2014 19:09:24 GMT
Roadtrip to Southwold and some shots in the freezing Spring dawn https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/5/Southwolddawn May every

Sunrise

Hold more

Promise

And every

Sunset

Hold more peace

 

With the hurly-burly of modern life and all its excitements and challenges, it's less often than you'd think, and less often than I'd like, that I get to shoot EXACTLY what I want. So back at the beginning of the year I decided to block out some weekends for my own photography and see who I could get to come along with my ideas and make it happen. Absolute score is all I can say... I sweet-talked a couple of epically beautiful girlfriends, Alicia and Dee, into modelling for me, inveigled my awesome friend Alan (who is a bloody good photographer btw) to come share in the fun and help me lug kit around (I'm a wimp) and persuaded my lovely neighbour to let me borrow his house by the sea in Southwold for the first May bank holiday weekend.

You have never seen anything like the tetris I played to get all of our stuff into the Ce'ed. I'd have taken a shot of it when it was done, except my camera bags were well and truly buried under endless suitcases, outfits, tripods, sleeping bags... you get the picture. Then it was up with the Dirty Dancing soundtrack at the girls' insistence and ho! for Southwold across green fields, flowering hedgerows and the English springtime in all its glorious first fanfare.

My plan was to shoot a very dreamy series of images - to move away from my usual style and into more romance. I'd talked through ideas with  my impossibly glam designer friend, Anna Jauncey www.annajauncey.co.uk who could probably not wash her hair for a month and turn up in a burlap sack and still knock your socks off (actually that goes for Alicia and Dee too. The standard of female beauty around me lately is frankly depressing). She lent us some pieces to experiment with and really talked the girls through their styling (damn woman was in Spain that weekend). Whether or not I succeeded in a dreamy look I'm not sure.

Saturday was spent scouting the area, eating too much and trying out lighting effects I wanted to put into practice the next day. 

The forecast changed at the last minute and heralded a corker of a dawn. We all fell into bed on Saturday night, full of fish & chips and plans. It seemed like no time at all until the alarm broke through my slumber. I opened the curtains and absolutely SCREAMED. Perfect light. The girls were staggering around in ballgowns, bleary eyed and applying fresh, dewy make-up. I think I speak for Alan when I say how happy I was to be required only to put on several layers of woollen clothing and double check my batteries were charged.

We piled outside. Argh! Thick layer of ice across the car.  Sunrise was only 15 minutes away although the sky was already a pale pink. Scrabbled for a cd case and frantically scraped windows clear. Zoomed along the clear quiet country roads until we got to the dunes. Race up the hill, get the girls up on the top, make them remove shoes and outer layers (remember, thick layer of frost)... and shoot some epic silhouettes. 

It was a truly special moment... we were all alone. The girls danced straight and slim in the dawn with the sea murmuring behind them. Someone had dropped a match in the sky and the world came alight. Moments like these you never forget and I hugged myself inside and felt alive.

I'm not going to bombard you all at once with shots from all the sessions we did in one go (tiresome for you) so here are my favourites from when the sun kissed the sky that cold Sunday morning... 

 

 

 

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/5/Southwolddawn Sun, 25 May 2014 18:51:59 GMT
Jenny-Red, some literary adventures and a beautiful bump https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/4/jenny-red A couple of weekends ago I went to visit a very old and dear friend of mine who lives in the beautiful countryside in the surrounds of Newcastle. A couple of months ago, Red phoned me up to announce that a little surprise would be making an appearance this summer, which prompted me to go straight on to the internet and buy myself a train ticket. I arrived bearing all the usual photographic paraphernalia and some extra warm socks (I've visited the north of our fair isle enough to know that you embark on house visits with LAYERS in case the central heating decides to give up the fight, or there's a sudden blizzard, or you have unaccountably grown too long for the bed and your feet stick out the bottom of the blankets).

I digress. Knowing me very well, being book obsessed (she worked in publishing for years) and star location scout that she is, Red helped me deposit most of my impedimenta in the car and led me straight through the doors and up the wide, faded red carpeted staircase of the city's Literary and Philosophical society http://www.litandphil.org.uk/. My jaw clanged open. It probably hasn't changed in 50 years. Hell, it probably hasn't changed in a hundred. Two stories of books, shelves upon shelves. At rather rickety old tables, on rather uncomfortable looking chairs, folk sat reading, or playing chess. They drank strong-looking tea from disposable plastic cups and one got the impression that the place is truly important to the community. If it was in London it'd be full of uber trendy types, and would be nicely restored, and your tea would be served (at £4 a cup rather than 20p) in some whimsical vintage china. I fell in love. And then we took some photos.

Newcastle is just gorgeous. I need to go back there and shoot properly in town. So many arches. So many bridges. Old... New... The city is crying out to frame the people I long to shoot there!

The next day, a lovely lazy Sunday, I shook off the dazed feeling of somehow having drunk most of a bottle of rioja (when one's friend is pregnant suddenly one drinks alone) and we set off on an adventure to Barter Books http://www.barterbooks.co.uk/ - which was once a first class waiting room and is now the most amazing, photogenic and frankly massive secondhand bookshop. Poetry overhead. Random rooms where one can take tea or a hearty sandwich to the side. After we'd taken a few shots of madame lounging on a lovely sofa I found the photography section and settled down to read... 

We finished off with a trip to the beach. My first sight of the sea since I came back from Cuba at the end of January. Beautiful... Amazing... One heck of a backdrop! For the first time since I've known her Red got out of breath walking up the hill on the way back. I guess being 6 months' pregnant is just about an excuse.

Darling Red, I loved spending time with you. I've tried not to gush here in case you get all embarrassed. Thank you for being such a willing and amazing model. I can't wait to meet your little bambino when he puts in an appearance later this year. You can bet your arse I'll be taking his portrait too :-)

 

Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London Red - bump shootPregnancy photography, Harpenden, Herts, London

 

 

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/4/jenny-red Mon, 14 Apr 2014 19:43:00 GMT
Photo-a-Day Challenge - March 2014 https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/3/Photo-a-day-Mar2014 A couple of years back I undertook a 365 challenge - one photo, every day, of something. Had a lot of fun... but felt quite exhausted with the effort of constantly thinking up something to shoot. I meant to go back to it... I really did. But life and injuries and more life got in the way and somehow the idea got lost in amongst the 'proper' shoots I was going.

However... lately inspiration has struck once more. A friend of mine, Rosie, has been doing a monthly challenge set up by an Aussie blogger who calls herself FatMumSlim (like it) and I've been watching fascinatedly for months. The FMS website, if you're interested is http://fatmumslim.com.au/ The idea is that she gives you word prompts and then you get creative within those parameters (and each person finds and grows their own parameters, I can tell you). She's been setting the challenges since January 2012, and somewhere along the line it went supernova. Over 20 million shots have been shared online.

 

Well... why not, I thought? I happened to see the shot list for March, challenged my best mates JP and Rhonda to come up with one too... and it's been a lot of fun! Folks have started to ask me what the word is, and sit around coming up with increasingly outlandish suggestions (I think 'Fresh' was the high point... or possibly the low point). The interesting thing about the project is the way that it causes you to slowly grow. Sometimes your shot is pretty humdrum, but just sometimes you capture something really good. And I encourage every one of you to think about trying a month yourselves. Really, it gets easier. And hey, if you miss a day, or post a week late - well, it's not like anyone's tapping their foot and looking at the watch (well, I'm almost sure). Have a go - and get your mates involved!

Anyway, without further ado, here are 31 phone shots from March. If you're interested in knowing about the apps I use to filter my photos, let me know and I'll make a mini tutorial or something :-)

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 1: YELLOW... No brainer.

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 2: BORROWED. Swiped my papa's shoeshine kit and gave my funky footwear some much-needed tlc

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 3: MY NAME IS Not strictly a photo... But I'm sticking with it as it made me smile on a Monday morning (no mean feat)

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 4: ON MY MIND... Entering new cities at dawn, not knowing what they'll hold or where I'll sleep or who I'll meet and even maybe fall in love with (yes yes, briefly!)... It's the most extraordinary experience, again and again. It's part of who I am. It never leaves me. Blessing and curse!

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 5: SOMETHING BEGINNING WITH I... I have ivy growing on one of my bookshelves and it trails down the bannisters in a prettily haphazard way :-)

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 5: CHAIR. These things are nailed into the ground at London Bridge but I kinda like them.

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 7: FLY... What better than a mariposa?? This year big changes are happening. They're exciting. They're downright frightening. I don't care!

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 8: CORNER... Specifically of the corner of Little Newport Street in Chinatown... On my way to drink improbable cocktails

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 9: 10AM. Can't beat lazy Sunday breakfast, doing the crossword, sipping your fave coffee and hatching plans for a sunny day :-)

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 10: FAR AWAY. Storm coming. Thailand.

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 11: SOMETHING GOOD. Feel like crap this week. Stupid lurg. Good thing is my nice big comfy bed waiting for me :-)

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 12: #partial The sun might be shining but probably best not to go for a dip just yet :-)

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 13: FRESH. All together now... NOM NOM NOM

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 14: CARE Can't get much better than Guy's Hospital. Hats off to the NHS folks, without whom I would not actually be walking any more. It might have its problems, but look around the world and know how lucky we are to have access to free healthcare.

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 15: EVENING. My good mate Tonio came for jambalaya. I told him he's only invited for the wine he brings. No problem, he informed me, he only comes for the food.

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 16: #beautifullyordinary This catcher of good fortune is nailed into the tomato planter on the patio. Had completely forgotten about it... Could do with a little luck right now :-)

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 17: TODAY'S WEATHER Some blue sky. Cool, bordering on chilly. Temperature deffo not what it was yesterday!

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 18: FIVE YEARS AGO...I have to confess to no more than a hazy recollection of each passage of time during the year I wandered slowly up through South America, but I'm pretty sure that 5 years ago I was living in the beautiful sunny white-stone of Arequipa in southern Peru. Happy memories...

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 19: CROPPED. Pressed for time and ideas. Loved these pretty flowers that have suddenly appeared!

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 20: LETTER Was dashing around this morning (late as usual) whilst trying to think of something vaguely original for today's pic. Had forgotten to pull out the box where I keep my old love letters and was drawing a blank. At which point my mama reminded me that we have magnetic scrabble on the fridge. We hastily assembled one of my favourite quotes... Job done!

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 21: FULL...Tin full of felt rainbow raindrops still to sew for Dribble's nursery mobile (this thing is a labour of love, I can tell you). I actually quite like my commute Btw... I get an hour, seated, to catch up on (always lots of) correspondence, sew, read, think. It's not dead time.

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 22: MORNING Decided to treat myself to French toast with beautiful fruit and nut bread. NOM!

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 23: I'M LOVING... bestest time with JP and Dribble. Shopping followed by afternoon tea... And a cheeky chocolate shake :-)

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 24: ONE OF A KIND...Rule Britannia! We're one of a kind and proud of it :-) 

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 25: SOFT... Meet Charlie. I swapped him for my dummy on my 2nd birthday. He's been well loved and much repaired as you can see and now lives in happy retirement on a shelf surrounded by lots of books.

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 26: I AM HERE ...Can you guess??!

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 26: SOMETHING I MADE Easiest task of the month! Here are the components of the mobile I'm just about to put together to celebrate the 1st birthday of my almost niece, Dribble (yes yes I know she has another name). Just waiting for the hoop to be delivered. It's gonna be AWESOME!

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 28: NOSTALGIA.... I know I keep saying it but, especially at this time of year how I miss life on the road... Here's the stuff I considered essential... With it I could record my thoughts and new vocabulary (and hot boys' phone numbers), cross borders, make friends and gather in more strangers as the game progressed, fix stuff, see in the bright sunlight, sooth chapped lips and burnt skin... And maybe take a few snapshots along the way :-)

 

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 29: STICKY you say? I think this counts as sticky don't you?

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 30: SPEED. This is Bluebell, my trusty steed. We like to go WHEEEEEEE!!!!

 

FMS Photo-a-Day by Sas

Day 31: FAUX. With apologies to Elvis Presley, you can do anything but lay off of my faux suede shoes :-)

 

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) 365 engagement fms herts london mariposa photography pre-wedding wedding https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/3/Photo-a-day-Mar2014 Mon, 31 Mar 2014 21:37:19 GMT
London Lights 1 https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/3/london-lights-1 People ask me all the time what I shoot. I say people. They ask why. I say because I really really like people. I like the way I can use my own energy to wake up their energy and then, all of a sudden, we start getting something very special out of our shoot. It's a huge buzz and the reason I love my work so much.

But anyone will tell you that it's not always good to just shoot the thing you're good at (actually that applies to most things)... it makes you complacent. It makes you lazy. So, as I hate lugging around tripods and standing around, I figured the best thing to start with with were the lights of London. My friend and fellow geek Ben met me yesterday evening therefore and we started near Tower Bridge and meandered down to Blackfriars.

It was harder than I'd thought. Landscapes don't just position themselves nicely because you've applied charm and told them to raise their chin a fraction. And what looks beautiful as you stand there and scan it may not in fact fit into your lens. And if it does it might not look half as magical as you're desperately wishing it did.

The rain came down. It splattered on the ground (making some great reflections I'll admit) and up our legs and down our collars. We had to take turns shooting while the other one held a brolly (which kept trying to blow inside out) over the the camera. We huddled under the eaves of St Paul's and ate sandwiches like proper geeks and waited for it to pass (gave up). By the time we got to Blackfriars we were so soggy we decided to leave Waterloo and Westminster (not to mention the West End and Battersea Power Station) for the next time.

Here are a few of my faves. I'm not saying I'd want to necessarily frame these (although I might consider the cheesy Cathedral / bus combo) but everyone has to start somewhere... it's ridiculous expecting to be perfect the first time you really try something. Plus it's woken me up to possibilities. Keep your eyes peeled therefore folks... I'm not done yet!

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/3/london-lights-1 Fri, 21 Mar 2014 20:30:59 GMT
Andrew and Rachel's wedding in Bonny Scotland! https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/2/andrew-and-rachel When my old friend Toadfish (Andrew to anyone who didn't skull innumerable pints with him at the student's union) called me up and asked me to shoot his and Rachel's marriage in my old university town of Edinburgh in January 2014 I did a small jig of excitement around the living room. And then I wondered what on earth I'd done with my thermal unmentionables. Scottish winters can be a bit... brisk.

 

The light in Scotland is extraordinary. I can't ever quite put my finger on exactly what makes it so... it's like the air is clearer (actually, what am I saying? The air IS clearer). It has a different colour and texture. If it wasn't so bloody cold you'd never get me away from the place.

 

Anyway, less of my rambling. Let me tell you a smidgeon of the story of Rachel and Toad. It sounds like it's a bloomin miracle they ever got as far as a first date actually... They met as Venture Scouts way back in 1996 and whilst acquainted in that teenage sort of way, managed to not notice each other especially. In 2003 they managed to live one street away from each other in Gorgie, and despite Rachel inviting Toad for dinner a couple of times, it doesn't sound like he quite realised that the option of more might be on the cards (lesson here ladies: flashing neon lights are often construed as barely a gentle hint by those with a Y chromosome). I gather they even managed to share a tent... there may have been a small element of rescue even... on a Scout rafting tour in Tasmania some years after that. Not sure which one didn't notice that love might just possibly be in the air there.

 

By some amazing luck, they managed to get it together 5 years ago to the day of their wedding (aw!) at a friend's 40th. Thank goodness is all I can say! It only takes 10 seconds to see that they're an amazing team, and their smiles and love just shone out throughout the whole day.

 

The wedding was held at Howies Restaurant. Beautiful, elegant decor. Beautiful elegant dresses (special mention to Rachel's mama who made the bridesmaids' frocks from scratch. Wow is all I can say there). Rather dashing kilts. We battled the howling wind (and hordes of excited tourists) and nipped up Calton Hill for all of ten minutes until the rain threatened to unmake us. We ate the most marvellous Scottish food (did I mention it was Burns Night????!) and the speeches made me laugh so hard I nearly dropped the camera. Genius. A ska band came on after the cutting of the fab cake and then everyone proceded (your friendly neighbourhood photographer included here) to bop until they dropped.

 

I have had an absolute nightmare trying to decide which shots I liked best. Once I got under 100 I gave up whittling. Bear with the series, they're lovely memories of an amazing day. Tons of love to the happy couple - enjoy your fabulous Cuban honeymoon!! xx

 

 

 

Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland Rachel and Andrew's Wedding, Edinburgh, Scotland

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2014/2/andrew-and-rachel Thu, 13 Feb 2014 22:55:21 GMT
Merry Christmas from Mariposa! https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/12/merry-christmas There's something about telling a kid they're going to be your special sparkly Christmas tree that makes them go all spiffy! Here are a few of my favourite little tinkers. Warmest festive greetings to you all :-)

 

and finally, my fave:

 

 

 

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) christmas herts kids london mariposa photography https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/12/merry-christmas Tue, 24 Dec 2013 19:02:34 GMT
Christina, Adrian and a very cute little monkey - Family Photography in London Town https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/11/Dyer When Christina and Adrian got in touch to ask me to join them and their wee boy Rhys in a stroll around Leadenhall Market and its environs I was pretty excited - they're a damn photogenic bunch! We'd already had to cancel once due to gale force winds and hail - this time, rain or shine we were going to make it happen...

I don't actually mind heavy grey skies for shooting. It's a common misconception that photographers want bright midday sun and no shade to shoot in. I can tell you now - it's our worst nightmare. Think about just what harsh overhead light does to the texture of your skin, and where it puts shadows (under your nose)... and the lens flare. Oh the lens flare. Anyway, so interesting clouds and the rich colours brought out by the humidity - I wasn't going to complain.

We had a lovely stroll, gossip and coffee (Rhys needed a break. It wasn't that we were feeling fatigued at all). Adrian and Christina are planning to jack in their London life and head to Canada in the new year, so I think it was a bit of a farewell shoot too. It's super brave of them and I applaud everyone who has the courage to step out of their comfort zone and see what curveballs life is going to throw at them. You don't half have some interesting experiences!

Here are a few of my fave pics. Guys - I loved meeting you, I'm absolutely rooting for you in your new life... all the very best xxx

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/11/Dyer Mon, 04 Nov 2013 22:44:12 GMT
Shoot with Dee on Brick Lane https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/10/dee I met Dee a while back at a party (she's the sister of a friend of mine), and I think within 10 minutes (generous estimate) I'd begged her to model for me. We eventually managed to get our diaries to coincide a few weeks back and decided as a first location to see what Brick Lane had to offer in the way of interesting backdrops. I love the contrast of super elegant girl against vintage doorways and wildly coloured graffiti.

We had a cracking afternoon looking for fab spots to shoot, gossiping madly, chatting up batty old men (see below) and in Dee's case, fending off a couple of offers of marriage on the spot. For sure we'll be collaborating again in the near future - on something a bit more arty and interesting now that the mad wedding season has got quieter and there's time to think. In the meantime, here are some of my fave shots of a truly gorgeous girl. Hope you like!

 

 

- xxx -

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) fashion herts london mariposa photography portrait https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/10/dee Sat, 19 Oct 2013 10:04:49 GMT
Katie and Danny's bump shoot https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/10/katie-and-dannys-bump-shoot I DO love bump shoots! When a girl's expecting her first bambino it's a really special time for her and her fella... they're excited, they're scared, they're wondering what in heaven's name they're letting herself in for, they're drooling over newborn clothes, they're thinking it might be a good idea to paint the nursery... Whatever - big changes are coming! So it's awesome to get them in front of the lens and share the love, the joy (and a modicum of the inevitable pants-wetting arrgghhh!!).

Therefore when lovely Katie and Danny asked me to capture the run up to their first baby I was super excited! They've got a short while to go (have to confess that I can't remember in weeks - only expectant and new mothers count things in weeks - the rest of us stick with things like "three and a bit months"). Anyway, we wandered through beautiful Rothampstead Park in Harpenden and made these shots. Simple yes, but when it's about people then it can be simple, because the important thing - the love - just shines right through.

Here are a few that I love of the happy expectant couple... I esp adore the ones of Katie punking it up in bump and black lace in the middle of the day (we got some interested looks I can tell you). Now that's girl power :-) xx

 

Maternity photography in HarpendenKatie and Danny - bump shoot! Maternity photography in HarpendenKatie and Danny - bump shoot! Maternity photography in HarpendenKatie and Danny - bump shoot! Maternity photography in HarpendenKatie and Danny - bump shoot! Maternity photography in HarpendenKatie and Danny - bump shoot!

 

 

 

 

 

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/10/katie-and-dannys-bump-shoot Wed, 16 Oct 2013 19:16:50 GMT
Judith's birthday polo match! https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/9/judith To celebrate turning the big 4-0, lovely Judith invited a host of friends and family from what seemed like all four corners of Europe to join her at Fifield Polo Club down in Berkshire for a lesson (first), a match (second), half a cow cooked divinely Argie style (if you don't know what I'm talking about book a ticket to Buenos Aires immediately and don't come back until you've eaten your weight in the best beef in the world) and LOTS of lovely beer.

Happy days! As I'd had the forethought to bring along a zoom, here are a few shots I took of the birthday girl's match :-)

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/9/judith Sun, 29 Sep 2013 19:18:19 GMT
Dreaming Spires https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/9/dreaming-spires My sister Jenny and her fella Michael have been over in the UK for a month, visiting from Melbourne. A couple of weeks ago they evinced a strong desire to go to Oxford to get some history in (remember that Oz has only officially 'born' a couple of hundred-odd years ago). So we piled into the car, navigated the mad ring road and landed splat in the middle of town.

First stop Christchurch College (historical and then some), followed by a lazy picnic in the park. Then I caught up with my friends Alex and Francesco and we all went and did the punt thing on the river. Bloody hell I'm glad no one made me get up there with the pole. My sense of balance is appalling at best. Frankie was amazing however, and even Alex, although not convinced of her technique, got us back to the mooring without much fuss (albeit after we'd turned madly in circles like derranged supermarket trollies a few times). It's definitely harder than it looks.

I didn't take that many shots that day - but wanted to share a few of my faves. Hope you like :-)

- xxx -

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/9/dreaming-spires Thu, 12 Sep 2013 16:49:11 GMT
Millie and Jamie's country wedding - and what happens when you paint with sparklers! https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/9/millie-and-jamie-wedding Millie and Jamie are the sweetest couple! We did an engagement shoot together earlier this summer and they're just a dream to work with as they're up for anything... and it's no surprise that the more you can relax and have fun, the better your shots are going to turn out.

The 16th of August dawned dark and sullen. I awoke to the sounds of rain hammering on the roof and my heart sank momentarily. Then remembered - HEY, WE'RE BRITISH! Weddings are about celebrating two people's love and getting everyone in the same place for a massive knees-up. Rain might be a dampener (literally) but there was no way it was going to stop the fun. (I packed wellies and my favourite rainbow umbrellas just in case though).

The downpour slackened. We walked across to the beautiful old church in the village of Aldbury (I love church weddings - I like singing the hymns). The bride floated down the aisle in her beautiful lace dress on the arm of her papa and Jamie couldn't have wiped the grin off his face for a million dollars. They couldn't stop smiling at each other.

The reception was held in a huge marquee in a field 3 minutes walk away. Wildflowers on the table, a message tree, pimms served in decorated jam jars.... We raced out the back to grab a few pics, whereupon the heavens opened and you've never seen a bride kick off her heels and sprint towards cover faster than Millie did.

The speeches were all charming... I'm going to give a special mention to Jamie's best man, Ben here though. Arguably the funniest best man's speech I've seen. He sang it, complete with ukelele... and I had to put the camera down a couple of times as was laughing so hard. He deserved his standing ovation - nice one mate.

An unusual first dance followed... Normally the lights dim, the couple get close and sway (or possibly get their come dancing on) to a favourite tune. This one started thus. However, after 30 seconds the dancefloor exploded with streamers and glitter and everyone went nuts. Apparently, it's what one does in Italy. Total shock to the happy couple couple and photographer alike.

When darkness fell I fetched my tripod and set up some light painting shots with sparklers, thanks to all three Mann brothers who got co-opted as assistants. It's not hard to paint with light - but it does need some setting up. Jamie and Millie were absolutely game and stood still as statues for the long exposures. Make sure you scroll to the bottom to see what we did.

To round off, everyone released beautiful Chinese lanterns over the (soggy) fields, which was an lovely sight. They're not as easy to get going as you'd think.

Anyway, I've had the devil of a time trying to choose which photos to show... and have had to give up trying to slim them down. I loved sharing Millie and Jamie's big day with them - I hope you enjoy the memories from it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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- xxx -

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) herts london mariposa photography wedding https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/9/millie-and-jamie-wedding Wed, 11 Sep 2013 15:40:28 GMT
Jenny & Michael - engagement shoot #1 https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/8/jenny-and-michael-1 Jenny's my little sister. Not so little any more (we don't talk about that though as I stopped aging at 27 in my head). She lives in Melbourne and has done so for best part of a decade now. We haven't seen each other for 5 years, largely as South America got in the way of visits. 5 years!!! Ridiculous. Anyway, she and her fella Michael are visiting for a month. Bahahahaha - I thought... Maximum opportunities for photography!

Yesterday they went out for a posh picnic in the park, somehow taking my mama along as well, which I imagine wasn't quite part of Michael's plan. Be that as it may, I gather that when the former disappeared momentarily, he seized his chance and, amid high pitched squeals of, "ARE YOU SERIOUS??!" he slid a delight of diamonds on to her finger (made by her super talented silversmith friend Moirin of http://www.mqjewellery.com.au. Check her out... If I ever get round to getting hitched she's making the rings).

When I returned home that evening I was met by a ring... and then a grinning sister... then a glass of bolly. Jenny hasn't stopped admiring her hand and smiling goofily yet... 

Today I informed them that, despite the downpour that showed absolutely no inclination towards stopping, we were going to do the first of their shoots to celebrate. And so we did... juggling umbrellas so that models and photographer AND CAMERA stayed comparatively dry. We managed all of about half an hour before the rain renewed its vigour and it got ridiculous. Look out for the next installment folks... and in the meantime, here are my faves from today...

- xxx -

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/8/jenny-and-michael-1 Sat, 24 Aug 2013 17:45:01 GMT
Ana, Kev, two little monkeys and a lot of BUBBLES https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/8/ana-kev On Saturday, lovely Ana and Kev loaded up their gorgeous little monkeys, Ethan and Rory, into the back of the car, along with toys, frisbees and biscuits (never ever underestimate the power of well-placed bribery when shooting small people under the age of 6) and navigated some fairly horrendous traffic to come and shoot with me on Nomansland Common (conveniently by the very nice Wicked Lady Pub, in case you're wondering). Along the way the skies opened. Like, biblically opened. Like, I was wondering whether to pack a dinghy rather than just my red wellies...

But, as is so often the case (maybe I'm blessed, I don't know) just as we drove into the carpark the rain stopped and the skies cleared enough to give us some interesting light. Hurrah! So we all piled on to the common and made with the photogenic faces. I'd brought along my secret weapon... a huge bubble wand, so the boys were pretty happy about that - especially Kev :-)

I've tried and tried to reduce the number of photos that I love down to a judicious handful... but they're so sweet that I can't... so have a look at them all. What a lovely day!

- xxx -

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) children herts kids london mariposa outdoors photography https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/8/ana-kev Fri, 09 Aug 2013 12:06:00 GMT
Lin and Pete's 35th Anniversary https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/lin-and-pete Since she was little, Linda has had fond (!) memories of being teased and tormented by her older cousins Robert and Raymond (the latter being my dear papa). So when she decided to celebrate 35 years of marriage to the lovely Pete with a bit of knees up I'm sure they were top of her list (ahem). At any rate, within two minutes of seeing her they accused her of making her dress from curtains and generally carried on from where they left off. 

I'd decided to take the camera to squeeze off a few shots to mark the happy occasion. After all, 35 is no mean feat. Hell, I'm 35! Actually, it turns out I'm in their wedding photos, a small bundle of white frills dribbling on my mama's shoulder. Be that as it may, the family had a fab time - and here a few shots from early evening. Congratulations guys - here's to 35 more!

 

 

- xxx -

 

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/lin-and-pete Mon, 29 Jul 2013 11:25:06 GMT
Elizabeth and Michael's wedding at Gorton Monastery, Manchester https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/lizzie_michael_wedding Last week I met up with Elizabeth and Michael in St James' in London for a pre-wedding shoot, this weekend (no time wasted here!) I jump on the train to Manchester to shoot their nuptials! The Fulwoods (from long acquaintance) have always been a terrible influence on me (!) so I've made sure that along with spare lenses, batteries and memory cards I've packed a spare liver as well. 

I rock up at the eclectically elegant hotel Lizzie and her sister Naomi have been staying at on the morning of the wedding to find gorgeous Kelly Marie Marshall hard at work making the bride and her bridesmaids look out of this world. The dress is by Caroline Castilagno, a divine and rather imperial Spanish confection of lace and the lightest organza which moves and swirls in its own invisible breeze. A reverential silence is observed upon its unveiling, broken only by my drooling into my camera bag. While I'm naming names, David Wayman Flowers (he's awesome - and a mean dancer) provided the pretty bouquets and decked out the venue in record time with a riot of classy colour.

A fizz of activity (and a glass of fizz) and it's all go. We bundle into the waiting car and race to the venue. Woweeee the venue. Gorton Monastery was built in the 1860s by Franciscan monks, fell into disrepair and has been rescued in the past few years, named a World Heritage Site and is generally pretty fab. http://www.themonastery.co.uk/ if you're interested.

Inside Michael is waiting with his best men, pacing up and down and looking like his stomach contains a whole farm of butterflies. (BTW I have absolutely no idea from which gentlemen's establishment he obtained his form-fitting three piece suit, but he's looking extremely fly).

Lizzie glides down the aisle on her papa's arm and there's no mistaking the fact that Michael is fighting back the tears at how goddamn gorgeous his wife-to-be is looking. The ceremony goes without a hitch, the newlyweds have a massive snog and everyone breathes out and gets ready for a good old knees up!

Cracking party, cracking people, cracking speeches and, I discovered later, cracking wine (see? good thing I packed that spare liver). Elizabeth and Michael - you have the most amazing friends and family. I wish you every joy for the future. And now, without further ado, here are a few of my favourite shots from the day....


 

- xxx -

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) engagement london mariposa photography wedding https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/lizzie_michael_wedding Wed, 24 Jul 2013 09:14:35 GMT
Oscar's nearly 1! https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/oscar When I got Oscar's Christening invitation through from Amy and Jack I thought HURRAH! And then I looked at the date and realised, sausages, I'm going to be in Andalucía. So I had a think about what a really nice present would be and decided he's probably going to be ok on the silver spoon front... what would be much more personal (from me anyway) would be a little family shoot instead. They're such happy loving people - it just gives me a warm fuzzy feeling every time I spend time with them (fizz is often involved too, for which they get extra Sas points).

And so one sunny weekend (well, mostly sunny) I beetled over to their house with lots of nice lenses and spent the most gorgeous day shooting Oscar, who is the biggest smiler you ever met. Honestly, that boy's not even 1 and he twists every woman he meets around his pinkie... and when you see the shots below you'll know exactly WHY!

 

- xxx -

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) baby family family shoot herts london mariposa photography toddler https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/oscar Fri, 19 Jul 2013 09:59:28 GMT
Meet little Tom - very very new! https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/tom If you've been following my work for any length of time you'll know that my most regular young model is Miss Isabel, who is now a whole 3 and a half. She's an absolute delight to shoot as after 3 years in front of my lens you can imagine how unbothered she is by it - although, and I'm going to say arrggghhh just a little, she seems to have picked up that strange plastic school-photo grin all kids seem to acquire between the age of 3 and 5 (gah! where do they get it from?! It drives me NUTS) so I have to be a little more patient to get the real McCoy now.

Ranting aside, Isabel now has a baby brother who's now nearly a whole month new. A fortnight ago I went to visit Rhonda and David and the new addition to their family. Young Tom is cuddly and tiny and I spent a good deal of the day snuggling with him on the sofa. In between I caught some super relaxed shots of the family... and here they are!

 

 

- xxx -

 

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) baby herts london mariposa newborn https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/tom Wed, 17 Jul 2013 11:31:42 GMT
Kate and Ton - a Thai / Scottish wedding! https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/kate-and-ton Earlier this year Kate got in touch and asked if I'd like to shoot her July wedding - which would be a traditional Thai blessing with a Scottish theme held in a marquee at the lovely Sandridgebury farm.

Yup, I scratched my head at that one too, but there's nothing I like better than a challenge! Kate and Ton live in northern Thailand, but hugely fortunately she has a lovely twin sister, Lorna, in Harpenden and a hugely supportive network of family and friends who executed her wishes from afar (anyone who will voluntarily arrange an entire wedding without being paid is gold plated, 5 star, and needs some kind of medal as far as I'm concerned) and so the happy couple were able to arrive reasonably close to the big day and finalise last minute details

And we have a gorgeous day for it. Actually it's so gorgeous that if it wasn't for the pretty carved fans so thoughtfully provided by the bride and groom (who, one supposes, are at least used to 28 degrees and then some) I think half the wedding party might have keeled over :-) 

In a Thai water blessing ceremony, the bride and groom sit at the front of the room, both wearing circlets of string linked together by a long thread and flower garlands around their necks. Each of their guests is invited to come up and bestow their individual blessing upon (and give advice to!) the couple by pouring water from a ceremonial conch shell over their hands, which trickles down into a basin filled with bright flowers. It's unhurried and quiet and personal. Kate and Ton sit smiling and laughing as their friends and family stop by one by one. 

After a quick change into Western apparel (and 10 minutes for photos!) it's time for heartwarming speeches, the breakfast and then... the Scottish side gains ascendancy, girds up its kilt and, as a fiddle begins a merry tune, steps up for an almighty ceilidh! Man I love ceilidhs - they're the quickest way I ever saw to get strangers talking and laughing like old friends. I stand on a wobbly chair and grin my head off as couples whirl and dance. 

A most unusual, informal and super fun day! Congratulations Kate and Ton - safe journey back to Thailand and all good wishes for your life together! Now... here are a few of my favourite shots!

 

- xxx -

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/kate-and-ton Tue, 16 Jul 2013 18:55:56 GMT
Emma and Michael - Pre-Wedding shoot in the lavender https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/emma-and-michael One sunny day in 2010, Emma packed her case and moved to London, ready to start a new chapter as a young, free (and let's infer) irresponsible single. Life always has the odd curve ball for us however, and within a couple of days she had met Mike ("He was VERY intoxicated and being VERY silly - as usual"), although it took them a few months of casual bumping into each other before she worked out that her soul mate was standing right in front of her. The rest, I am told his history. Now they're getting married in a month in Skiathos, and I have to say I'm crying buckets... no.... rivers to not be shooting that one!, although I am very looking forward to joining them, cams in tow at their UK shindig in the autumn, where I will be making the acquaintance of the most lavish and expensive cake I have ever seen (you'll just have to wait).

 

Lavender, its scent and its memories, has a special place in Emma's and Mike's hearts, so it was with great pleasure that we headed to Hitchin Lavender farm on an absolute scorcher of a Sunday afternoon for a vintage style shoot - with smart threads and old cameras included. Lots of laughing and fooling around - and, despite the lavender being a week late in its flowering (thanks very much English Spring!) lots of pretty shots! They all work in both colour and B&W - and I'm frankly very glad I'm not going to have to be the person deciding which ones to frame :-) Hope you like too....

 

 

- xxx -

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/emma-and-michael Mon, 15 Jul 2013 16:13:38 GMT
Lizzie and Michael - a St James-themed pre-wedding shoot https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/lizzie-and-michael-pre-wedding Lizzie and Michael met in Dubai a few years back (actually, that's not true - they met at a party in the UK first but as neither of them remembers the encounter, well, it doesn't count). And after one heck of a ride on the rollercoaster of life they've come back to the UK to get hitched next week.

I like the idea of a shoot around the St James area... the day is hot and the sky is clear. They're recently off the plane and look disgustingly well despite the jetlag. I suggest adjourning to a pub to wait for the afternoon light to wane just a little further (yup, that was exactly why) ... and it pays off. Once we've figured out next Saturday's logistics we head out to make some lovely images. Here are some of my favourites... hope you like them too!

- xxx -

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) engagement herts london mariposa photography pre-wedding wedding https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/lizzie-and-michael-pre-wedding Sun, 14 Jul 2013 19:13:06 GMT
Millie and Jamie's pre-wedding shoot https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/millie-and-jamie One cold day four and a half years ago, Millie's friend Kimmy shooed her into the car, drove a few miles and unceremoniously deposited her on the doorstep of an unknown house. 'You need to meet the guy who lives here', Kimmy told her, driving off. ''He's just right for you'.

And now they're getting married. 

Jamie and Millie that is. Kimmy presumably has some kind of seat of honour at the wedding.

Fabulous how-we-met story notwithstanding, I meet up with this super-sweet couple at Ashridge towards the end of an absolutely sweltering afternoon last weekend. Millie is wearing a cute polkadot sundress and looked cool as a cucmumber. Poor Jamie has opted to swelter (manfully) in a dapper grey suit. Your friendly photographer had forgotten to apply sunscreen and finishes the day with some interesting camera strap-shaped tanlines.

Ah well, the things we do for art.

Had a wicked cool time shooting - and knocking back a couple of ice cold shandies (I'm not ashamed I tell you) after a tour of the venues. I'm not going to spoil the surprise for August but it's pretty certain that come rain or shine it's going to be a corker of a day.

Hope you like this selection from the afternoon - and if you're going to be a guest of Mr and soon-to-be Mrs E well, then I'll be seeing you soon!

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- xxx -

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) engagement herts london mariposa photography pre-wedding wedding https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/millie-and-jamie Fri, 05 Jul 2013 17:10:43 GMT
Clare and Nick's pre-wedding shoot https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/clare-and-nick Last weekend I packed my bag and headed out to Hearts Wood forest near Sandridge for a pre-wedding session with Clare and Nick. Hearts Wood was only planted a very few years ago and is a pretty place for a wander and will soon be blanketed by millions of scarlet poppies - worth a visit! Today we are met by long waving grasses, fields of beautiful outsized daisies, low skies and really epic gusts of wind. Clare debates wrapping up but decides in the end that this is a moment where style must triumph over mere comfort.

She and Nick huddle close for warmth where possible (this is a pre-wedding shoot so not a problem!) and in between a really huge amount of joking around and waiting for the wind to drop enough that dresses don't blow over heads (definitely not the look we're going for!) we have lots of fun and get some lovely shots. 

Looking forward to October guys :-)

 

- xxx -

 

 

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) engagement herts london mariposa photography pre-wedding wedding https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/7/clare-and-nick Tue, 02 Jul 2013 16:51:45 GMT
An English Rose https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/6/Jess Will it rain? Won't it rain? I bite my nails and watch the sky anxiously. However, I needn't have feared. The British summer for once cuts me a little slack (the number of waterlogged wedding shoots this year has been frankly depressing, as brides across the country and my fellow photographers will emphatically attest) and the sun consents to peer out from behind the clouds just in time to give young Jess the beautiful afternoon light she deserves.

It's not often a client is super relaxed from the get-go. It can be pretty nerve wracking to have a massive lens in your face for the first time... So often what happens is you start the session with muscles in spasms of terror, tendons twanging like steel hawsers, shoulders hunched around your ears and a frozen rictus welded on to your face... You're convinced you're going to scorch the camera sensor, have your eyes shut and be sporting at least four chins in every shot.

But... and here's the nice bit... given time, patience, persuasion and a LOT of laughing (mostly at me I regret to say) the fear evaporates and you start to have fun and to... shine. To be and to show your very best. It stands out a mile, the second you start to truly enjoy yourself and connect with the lens. I can always point to the shot where it happens. Gold dust. And that's why I love my job more than anything else in the world (I'm including chocolate coffee beans in this, so you can tell how serious I'm being).

But I digress (as usual). Jess, a true English Rose with the sweetest nature and huge liquid dark eyes, turns out to be an absolute natural and an utter joy to shoot. We wander over the Common in the last of the afternoon, giggling like idiots, shooting the breeze as well as a sweet series of portraits.

You'll definitely be seeing this young lady on the blog again as I've asked her to model for me later in the year. Happy days :-)

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2013/6/Jess Tue, 25 Jun 2013 21:08:13 GMT
Isabel among the lavender fields https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/11/isabel-among-the-lavender-fields  

Since my return to the UK I have probably photographed Isabel more than any other small person. She's an unusual little button in that she's not fussed one way or another by the dirty great lens being stuck in her face, and has an incredible - and highly photogenic - quality I find hard to pin down.

Her mama and papa live very close to the Hitchin Lavender Fields http://www.hitchinlavender.com so when an afternoon freed itself up we shook our fists at the darkening skies and hot-footed it over. For a measly £4 a pop we were presented with cutters and bags and told to help ourselves - extra bargain!

Anyway, despite Isabel suddenly becoming preoccupied with the snails that covered the paths due to all the rain and intermittently refusing to move ("Children and animals, Vassie", they said), and an epic rainstorm at the top of the hill that had us hunched all together in the middle of the field under a couple of huge brollies for a quarter of an hour, we managed to get a series of absolute corkers and I've absolutely fallen in love with the shots. I wouldn't normally post so many but she looks so darn beautiful. Hope you like them too...

 

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/11/isabel-among-the-lavender-fields Thu, 22 Nov 2012 15:10:19 GMT
Amy and Alan... Sunshine, roses and an awesome party! https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/9/amy-and-alan-get-hitched Summer 2012. It rained. And it rained. And then it rained some more. I was starting to wonder if Amy and Al were going to have to give up on the idea of a garden party and build an ark instead. And just when I was packing my wading boots, waterproof camera casing and wondering where my sou'wester had got to the sun came out! And not just a little bit out - suddenly we had SUMMERTIME!!!

Amy and Al, together with their lovely family and friends, had planned a seriously special wedding day. The ceremony took place at the  eye-wateringly beautiful St Mary's Church in Thame (I'm obsessed with churches and this one took the biscuit). Once the hymns were sung and the register signed, the bride, groom and I picked up her full white fairytale dress and gorgeously heavy lace veil (sigh!) and, what with time not being on our side, hotfooted it round the back of the super-photogenic church for the fastest newlywed shoot I have ever done in my life. Speedy Gon-poses. But Amy and Al were FAB. They giggled and snuggled and made big eyes at each other and it was wicked fun. After which it was all back to the entrance for a snowstorm of confetti and an exit in a very snazzy vintage sports car.

But here's where I was reaaaaally impressed. The reception was held in Amy's parents' huge long garden... Today it was full of flowers, a huge marquee with beautiful laid tables and uniformed staff scurrying around making things perfect, swings, a drinks tent, a colourful gazebo and even a splat-the-rat game (colour me impressed). Friends and family had worked long and hard with the newlyweds to make it magical... and it was full bursting with colour and special touches. Guests sipped elderflower cordial, cold white wine and colder beers and all I heard for the whole afternoon were the sounds of a hundred people having a cracking time. I mooched around chatting to many folks and shooting with a long lens. Love it!

Mr and Mrs are relaxed, funny, super-together and lovely to be around. Their wedding was exactly what a wedding should be - full of warmth and love and laughter, and I can't tell you how much I enjoyed myself. I know an amazing life awaits them... in fact - they're living it now :-)

For those die-hards who want to look at the *big* gallery, you can find it here http://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/amyandal . In the meantime here's a selection of some of my faves of the happy couple!


 
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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/9/amy-and-alan-get-hitched Sun, 02 Sep 2012 20:14:58 GMT
Meet Baby Oscar! https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/8/meet-baby-oscar I pretty much always love my job. Photography floats my boat. The challenge and joy of getting people to trust me, relax and show the very best of themselves never fails to make me tingle. But there's something extra special about shooting newborns (that sounds wrong huh?). They're a little miracle all by themselves. All wrinkled like the petals of a new poppy. They blink at you with shiny, unfocused eyes. They yell like air raid sirens for more milk, or for a nappy change, or because it's Tuesday (I don't know here - it's obviously tough being a baby). And they fall asleep, warm and sweet-smelling on your chest, lulled by the comforting thump thump of your heartbeat. Soon they'll be sitting up and getting involved with the world, but for two or three precious weeks they're this tiny little bundle of raw, magical potential. 

Amy, Jack and I did a bump shoot when they were at 6 months, and had an awful lot of fun striding round fields in wellies with their very cuddly and enormous Spinone, Bobby (less of a fur-ball than a fur-barge) and giggling over indoor shots. By the by, some of the pics are on my FB page here: http://tinyurl.com/mariposa-amyandjack ... so when we agreed I'd come back when Oscar was just 2 weeks' new I got all excited and packed my cameras, my lenses, and a whole change of clothing (yeah, newborns dribble and puke milk a lot too. I got caught out once.... never, ever again).

And we had a lovely time! Oscar was in the middle of a mega growth spurt (by the length of his legs he's going to be 6 foot tall by the time he's 2) which meant FEEDING. But hey-ho. We stopped every 10 minutes and the afternoon was filled with cuddles and photos and more cuddles. Amy and Jack have made a house and a life full of love. Can't wait for the next session!

What a soppy plonker I am. Here's a link to the gallery http://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/oscarcornelius and below are some of my faves from our shoot. Hope you enjoy them too...

 

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) baby newborn https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/8/meet-baby-oscar Mon, 27 Aug 2012 07:28:01 GMT
Liz, Rob and the loveliest day :-) https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/8/lizandrobgethitched Some couples just light up the world around them. They know how to laugh at the whole world and themselves most of all... and so surround themselves with like-minded people. I'd loved our pre-wedding shoot (anyone who will salsa in wellies across Nomansland Common gets my vote) and so knew what I was in for on Liz and Rob's big day. 

And I wasn't disappointed. The bride went all 50s in towering heels and an epically beautiful old-style prom dress. Swoon. The bridesmaids (in equally impressive heels - esp for someone like me who can fall off her own bare feet) shimmied in polkadots... and the groom and his partners-in-crime looked surprisingly suave in grey and pink (you have to be a real man to pull that one off, so well done there).

Anyway, clothing commentary aside, these guys were just awesome. They've been together for ever so long. They're best friends as well as partners. The magic is so obviously there. They go off into corners and giggle. Who cared if the rain put an end to their ceremony in the woods? They kept on smiling and the sun came out soon after. Lots of garden games, fizz and lovely guests.  

I loved shooting this wedding! Here are a few shots from the day... oh and if you really fancy checking out the whole gallery you can take a peek here: http://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/lizandrob :-)

 

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) engagement herts london mariposa photography pre-wedding wedding https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/8/lizandrobgethitched Wed, 22 Aug 2012 21:28:23 GMT
Rosie and Daren's bump shoot https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/6/rosie-and-daren-bump-shoot I can count on my fingers the number of weeks until Rosie and Daren will be welcoming a new addition to their family. I get all giddy about bump shoots - especially with first timers - that feeling of standing on the very brink of something momentous fizzes in my blood. I remember being quite undone and bursting into floods of tears the first time I felt a baby kick under my hand. I still feel like that, but happily for bemused mamas-to-be have got a grip on the old waterworks these days.

So when the lovely couple invite me down for a bump shoot / weekend of long overdue gossip (btw oh boy can Rosie cook - I left on Sunday a good 3 kilos heavier than I arrived) we cross our fingers firmly for sunshine with flattering cloudy moments and, 40s hair, make-up and wardrobe choices complete, head out to Bushey Park by Hampton Court to take a leisurely stroll around the lake, the palace and their surrounds and capture some pretty moments (scoffing a nice big ice cream along the way of course).

I love these shots... I hope you do too.

 

Rosie and Daren bump shoot - Hampton Court Rosie and Daren bump shoot - Hampton Court Rosie and Daren bump shoot - Hampton Court Rosie and Daren bump shoot - Hampton Court Rosie and Daren bump shoot - Hampton Court Rosie and Daren bump shoot - Hampton Court Rosie and Daren bump shoot - Hampton Court Rosie and Daren bump shoot - Hampton Court Rosie and Daren bump shoot - Hampton Court Rosie and Daren bump shoot - Hampton Court Rosie and Daren bump shoot - Hampton Court Rosie and Daren bump shoot - Hampton Court Rosie and Daren bump shoot - Hampton Court

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) bump shoot london https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/6/rosie-and-daren-bump-shoot Sun, 10 Jun 2012 17:33:53 GMT
Liz and Rob's pre-wedding shoot https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/6/liz-and-robs-pre-wedding-shoot Given the biblical amounts of rain we've been having lately, Liz and I have been despairing of ever finding a date for her and Rob's pre-wedding shoot before the nuptials next month... so when the weather forecast relents momentarily we seize the opportunity with both hands and hot-foot it to Nomansland Common this morning. Cor blimey there's a lot of wind, but faint-heart never won fair photoshoot...

Liz and Rob are just a joy to shoot (let's be clear here: with a camera) - they're relaxed, they giggle at each other, they're up for whatever daft ideas I come up with and good-naturedly spin and jump like it wasn't half past ten on a Saturday morning when they'd rather be in bed with a nice big cup of coffee. Rob looks slightly alarmed the first time he looks into the 24-105mm but manfully gets on with the task of salsa-ing his wife-to-be across the field.

Enough of my waffle: I can't WAIT to shoot their wedding on 7 July. Happiness, love and a darn fine day are just around the corner. And in the meantime, here are some shots from today's shoot.

Liz & Rob Liz & Rob Liz & Rob Liz & Rob Liz & Rob Liz & Rob Liz & Rob Liz & Rob Liz & Rob Liz & Rob Liz & Rob Liz & Rob Liz & Rob Liz & Rob Liz & Rob

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(Mariposa Photography by Sas Vassie) pre-wedding shoot https://www.mariposaphoto.co.uk/blog/2012/6/liz-and-robs-pre-wedding-shoot Sat, 09 Jun 2012 23:21:33 GMT