Longleat Adventure | Photo Diary

Ah, hello again! How nice it feels to be able to post something here again. I've changed up the format a little bit of this site too. It's now mostly going to be a blog of my work and everyday photos with a portfolio on the side rather than totally targeted towards getting commission work. I feel like this is so much more 'me' and I love to be able to communicate with people in a much authentic and honest way.

This last week was spent chilling out on holiday at the wonderful Longleat Forest in the heart of Wiltshire, England. 

I remembered how to do nothing but have fun.
I remembered that walking in nature recharges my batteries.
Laughing with friends is the best medication.
I feel like someone has pressed my reset button.
I'm grateful for everything this week. Thank you, thank you for this experience.
I met some amazing animals - skunks, owls and giant rabbits.
I took a nap in many beautiful places.

Anyway, with all that said and done: here are my memories.

Penseive, Love & Melancholy

A new little series of double exposures I'm working on πŸ˜‡ I can't wait to work on this series more, it's so much fun to experiment and create.

I'm posting a few behind the scenes and work in progress shots over on my Instagram, so please give me a follow over there if it's something you're interested in.

Thanks for looking!

Jas xo

Handling 'The Off Season' for Photographers

If you are a photographer that gets consistent work and inspiration all the year round, then I admire you. For myself - and many other photographers - things start to dip a bit around December - March time, whether that be through lack of people wanting photos in the cold and rain or through the world outside seeming quite a bit less inspiring. 

I know that right now, I am totally in that slump - dreaming of sunshine and running through woods with models, and in reality lying in bed trying to get inspiration and motivation to get up and do yoga. The winter leaves me an exhausted human being.

Regardless, that itch to create doesn't go away!

  1. Accept that you're in an uninspiring environment and do not beat yourself up about it. Seasonal sadness is an actual thing, so try and be kind to yourself.
  2. Take a break for yourself. Don't think about it for a little while, a few days, a week, a month. Let yourself want to get back into it, and miss it a little bit.
  3. Read some inspiring books while cuddled under a blanket. Whether it's by your favourite artist, an autobiography of someone you admire or some fantastic young adult fantasy -just escape into a imaginative new world.
  4. Keep a journal of your inspirations for a later date. Draw, write, document, stick in.
  5. Blog your work from last year. This is the perfect opportunity to blog any work done previously - it should remind you of working at your peak and also draw more people to your work and your blog (bonus!).
  6. Start collecting props for your future work. Look through places like Ebay and Etsy. I like the challenge of looking through charity shops to see what treasures I can find for a budget of Β£10, Β£20 etc.
  7. Learn something new. While you're not shooting, take the time to learn instead. Keep a journal of the things you learn, whether you enrol in an online editing course, take a free course in biology or buy a book on baking.
  8. Chances are that in a few months you'll have not much time to dedicate to yourself, so take this chance to do some yoga, download a meditation app or sign up to Race for Life.
  9. Start a new Pinterest - I recently created a brand new account on Pinterest and starting again from the ground up was thrilling (yes, that's thrilling to me, okay?). Surround yourself with the positive quotes, beautiful houses, and recipes you'll probably never try.
  10. Try a different kind of art. There is plenty of creative outlets out there that do not require sunlight or warmer weather. Things like crochet, knitting, drawing, journalling and many more are just some examples of having a creative outlet you can do in an evening.

I hope this helps someone out there! I definitely got a little more motivation by just writing all these down πŸ’ͺ🏼 If you experience the same thing in the winter months, or have any other ideas to add then please do add them in the comments below.

Please feel free to give me a follow on instagram, it would mean a lot.

Have a great day! Jas x

Witchlight

This year I'm planning to work on my conceptual portfolio and make some magical and wondrous photos whenever I can. Here's my first venture into my series - 'Witchlight'.

Witchlight

Reading dusty tomes by moonlight often became tricky and cumbersome. She preferred to read in the comforting blanket of darkness, away from the stares and giggles of her peers. Here she could pour over text for what felt like forever, uninterrupted apart from the drip drip of rain on the rooftop above, hypnotically losing herself in the words on the page. When the moonlight became too sparse she lit the end of her finger by simply thinking about it - one moment the markings where lost in darkness, and the next a flame had appeared, fidgeting in the breeze - it never hurt. it was a gift she had kept hidden for the last few weeks, something told her others wouldn't be as accepting and welcoming as her. It was all new, it felt like she was at the very beginning of something huge and fantastic. If she could do this, then what else would she discover? Anyway, she preferred reading by candle light... Finger light?...No, Witchlight.

Favourite Photos of 2016

It's the end of another year and time to look back on my favourite photos of 2016. Thank you to each and every person who has made this year special, and an extra special shoutout to my wonderful clients in these photos. 

Happy new year! I hope 2017 is a good one.

I am always looking to work with new models, creatives, families and people so please do get in contact and give me a follow on social media to keep up to date.

Jas xo

Buried Treasure

Last night we had our staff party where I work - it was the first time in ages I had the opportunity to buy a nice dress, put on some make up and dance wildly to really loud music whilst being surrounded by people I love. Recently I've been feeling like a total zombie, and I'm pretty sure seasonal affective disorder has something to do with it. This party perked me up a bit though, and today I woke up with more energy and motivation.

I doodled this little self portrait out a little while ago.

I always have portrait ideas like this is my head, but it's not until I do it and study it that I realise how reflective it is. Originally I thought 'this portrait is about finding love'. I still think it is, but I think it also portrays finding love of yourself. There is no map to discovering your emotional and spiritual self. As a 23 year old, I'm sure many of you can relate, I feel like I'm discovering my place in the world more and more every day. Finding my own path to personal fulfilment and happiness.

If I'm honest, I was a bit nervous about posting this photo online - it's probably the most skin I've ever shown in a self portrait. I soothed myself by saying things like 'it's almost like you're wearing a strapless dress and you can't see it' which is true, but not really the point. If I had taken this photo of someone else, it wouldn't be a problem for me at all. 

Thank you for reading! If you'd like to connect on social media, please do give me a follow and a comment so I can look at your profile too.

If I don't write before, have a brilliant Christmas.

Jas x

A Dystopian Photoshoot

A couple of weeks ago I had the idea of doing a photoshoot based on a dystopian / post apocalyptic theme. A photoshoot that I cast / style / create / concept entirely by myself pushed me out of my comfort zone, but it was bloomin' amazing, and I've learned so much from it.

My inspirations for this shoot was mainly young adult dystopian fiction - think The Hunger Games or Divergent. Particularly the book The Fifth Wave comes to mind too!

My wonderful models here were Onyxeia and Noah - they were both so lovely and talented to work with and really made the photos special. We shot these photos in Priory Park in Chichester - just as we started the beautiful golden hour sun came through the clouds.

There were many occasions during the planning part of this shoot that I almost thought "what's the point it's not going to be good enough" but I'm so glad that I stuck with it and just thought "let's see what I can create instead". 

The costumes from this shoot where the result of my raiding the charity shops of Farnham, and i total cost me around Β£15 - bargain! I went to town a bit adding holes, mud and blood. Making the costume makes me feel so connected to these images, and in future I definitely want to spend more time in creating the details myself.

Steph & Dave's Alice in Wonderland Wedding πŸ’’ Bickley Manor Hotel

I first met Dave while studying for my BA(hons) Photography as he was on the same course. Fast-forward a few years and Dave and his then fiance (now wife!) Steph asked my to photograph their Alice in Wonderland themed wedding at Bickley Manor Hotel.

The attention to detail was gorgeous, and I really wish the two of them an amazing life together πŸ’›

Jas x

Family Photography Update

I thought I would post a little update gallery of some of the family photography I've been doing over the past few months. It's really something I've come to love deeply over the last couple of years as it's a type of documentary photography that's filled with so much love and hope. As well as that, it acts as a frozen moment that the family can treasure as life moves forward. It makes me feel warm and fuzzy.

Stars of the show: Leo, Chester & Archer

Locations: Hindhead, Farnham, Waverley Abbey

If you're interested in working with me please do get in touch.

Jas x

Dark City

Ah, the big smoke. I don't get to travel to London very often, but when I do it's always fun and inspiring. I would love to work in London one day, and this trip made it seem like it was much more of a possible thing. I didn't take too many photos - we where there to see a show (School of Rock!) and we didn't have too much time. What time we did have we definitely spent in Forbidden Planet (and Kikki K... shhh!).

At the moment I'm reading a book that's all about witches and vampires, plus it's just been Halloween, so I'm pretty sure that had something to do with my experiments in underexposed black and white photography.

Where's your favourite place in central London?

Comparing Yourself to other Artists

The phrase 'don't compare yourself to others' is well known, but I reckon it's also well forgotten too. It's certainly something that I forget, sometimes getting pulled into a spiral of wondering why my work is not as 'good' as my favourite photographers.

Firstly, I just want to say that as an artist, comparing yourself to other artists is okay. Essential, even. It helps you:

  • Know what you like, aesthetically
  • Find what kind of direction to go in
  • Keeps you inspired
  • Keeps you wanting to improve
  • Keeps you 'in the loop' of the industry
  • Makes you want to try new things

What is not okay, is when we get caught up thinking that our work is not as good as x y or z because we are simply not good enough. The thing to remember is that everyone is on a different journey. Shall I say that again? EVERYONE IS ON A DIFFERENT JOURNEY. One person might take to things like a fish to water at the beginning of their career and another might spend years of effort to create something similar. Some people learn faster. Some people are lucky. One is not better than the other, and one is not just because that person is more talented. People have different lives, and the only one YOU need to focus on is creating your own around you. Create the life you want.

Remember that the artist you really love will have years of different experiences than you. If everyone was the same, what would make your work unique?

I once heard someone say that the work you want to create in your head will always be 5 years ahead of what you can do right now. And y'know what? Five years ago I would have LOVED to create what I do now.

So, basically - keep following those artists you love. Keep creating and keep learning.

Jas x

FOMO As An Freelance Creator

The Test 1/52

Something I've been pondering on for a while is, you guessed it - FOMO. For those who haven't heard of it before, FOMO is 'fear of missing out' and is generally associated with social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram. You see a highlight reel of the people you know swimming with dolphins, getting a promotion at work, getting cocktails and having children. FOMO leaves you thinking - am I doing enough? Is everyone else achieving so much more than me? And the answer is - no, they're probably not, but all of it together in one feed that you stare at constantly is probably enough to make anyone think that.

In terms of being a freelance creator (photography for me!) I think it's no different. When I log on to facebook, I have liked many photography pages, joined groups, and generally have a lot of people in the industry's life on my feed. The thoughts in my head are 'they seem to be getting so much more work than me, maybe I'm just not that good', 'they can afford a house! Their photography must be earning them so much money, why isn't mine?', 'look at this work they've been doing! I feel like I've done nothing anywhere near as good, I must be lazy. Work harder!' - not exactly the most productive thoughts, and definitely not something that should be perpetually going around your head voluntarily. For some people I'm sure this is fine, but for others not so much.

Facebook is also one of the most useful tools for me, the communities I have joined and the friends I have made on there is something I am very grateful for. But maybe just being aware of these feelings that arise and noticing that they are not true can help just a tiny little bit. Sometimes we all need a little break from tech.

Let me know what you think! Do you experience FOMO as a creator?

Jas x

5 Reasons Why Autumn Portraits are Super Magical

1 - The Colours

Maybe the most obvious ones, right? There's something about all the different shades of red, orange and brown that is so warm and comforting. Add a bit of trees turning red into the back of a photo and it immediately bring character and context. The colours signify changing of seasons. moving on, and the start of the holiday season.

2 - The Weather & Sky

Okay, so hear me out on this one. In autumn, yes there is probably a good chance of rain, but that's not always a bad thing. Cloudy skies act like huge lighting soft-boxes which gives one of my all-time favourite lighting in photos. It's really very flattering for portraits. If there is a higher chance of rain - although, it's England, so who knows - the big brooding storm clouds can look ah-mazing in photos. If it was my choice, most of my photos would be accompanied my amazing dramatic skies.

3 - A Break from the Dark

So, by this point we are all probably over the summer holidays and breaks, and back into working hard and wrapping up from the cold. Getting out with your camera, photographing clients, going for a walk with your loved ones - it's more important than before to get some time in the fresh air. With the nights drawing in too, taking the daytime to photograph outside is a great way to get your allocated fresh air / sunshine time.

4 - Golden Hour

Golden hour is that magical time of the day when the sun is setting, and the light turns a beautiful shade of gold. It sometimes only lasts minutes. During the winter this happens much earlier in the day. In the summer it can be as late as about 9:00pm, it can get as early as 4:00pm over the colder months. This means that photo sessions can be scheduled at a more reasonable hour, and you can still try and catch that gorgeous golden light. Add this in with the colours of the trees and you are win-ning.

5 - Autumn Make Up & Clothing

One of my favourite things about autumn is breaking out the darker lipsticks, smokey eyes and warmer clothing.

5 Things About Me

35/52 - Secrets

35/52 - Secrets

Okay, so these kind of posts have been floating around for a while. But as this blog is sort of new-ish, I thought - why not? 

1 - I was born on the summer solstice. β˜€οΈ
Yep, my birthday is the longest day of the year and almost slap bang in the middle of summer - 21st June. I believe there is a lot of astrological significance to this - it's also the day of the year that people celebrate the sunrise at Stone Henge because the sun is in line with the stones. I'm not huge on horoscopes, but it puts me right on the cusp between Gemini and Cancer (personally I've always identified as a gemini shhh...).

2 - I live a vegan and cruelty free lifestyle. πŸƒ
To the best of my ability and knowledge, anyway. I don't believe that anything can be 100% of either, but I try to be honest and kind about the choices I make and the products that I buy.

3 - I'm a Potterhead. ⚑️
From the age of seven I grew up reading and listening to the Harry Potter series, and I still do now. The series is so special to me, and I find so much meaning in it. Hermione inspired me to do well in school, Harry encouraged me to be brave and Ron taught me the value of family and friendship. Right now I am re-reading the seventh book, and it is so dark and just... all the tears...😒

4 - I love journalling. πŸ“–
My journal is my lifeline and I love it so very much. I've been journalling or a few years now, but a few months ago I also started a bullet journal where I keep track of goals, ideas, appointments, health, and emotions. It's also a place for me to be creative and to not to hide. I thoroughly recommend starting a journal or a bullet journal to everyone. Seriously. Give it a go.

5 - I play video games. πŸ•Ή
Not very well, mind you, but I've always been a sucker for games that are open world, city building or very story led. I adore Pokemon, Skyrim, City Skylines, Fallout 4, The Sims and so many more. I'm not the greatest at them, and my attention span for them can be a bit rocky, but sometimes spending a few hours in a different world is so relaxing.

That's it! Thank you for reading. If there is ever anything you'd like to know about photography, or a particular post that you'd like to see please do let me know :

Jas xo

Jack Jewers, Director - Portrait Photography

A few weeks ago I had the absolute pleasure of working with the truly brilliant director - Jack Jewers for a portrait session in Farnham, Surrey. After watching his showreel, I was immediately excited to meet Jack, and we were able to bounce ideas off of each other from the get-go.

The goal was to create some images for Jack to use for promotional purposes, but to stay away from the posed/formal studio photos that usually come with the 'headshot' tag attached to them.

I wanted to find somewhere with great stone and rock textures, and of course - Farnham came up trumps in that department. We all know that superheroes have alliterative names - Jack Jewers - I'm just throwing that out there...

Find out more about Jack Jewers at jackjewers.co.uk
(You should also give him a follow on twitter too)

Samus Zero Suit Cosplay Photography - Onyxeia

This week I had the absolute pleasure of shooting with the amazing Onyxeia. She is so relaxed and brilliant behind the camera. I definitely recommend you head over to her Facebook and Instagram and give her a follow.

Model & Makeup: Onyxeia
Cosplay: Samus, Zero Suit

With these photos I really wanted to focus on silhouette and curves, as well as the amazing blue colour.

At first, trying to find a place that was urban looking in Farnham was quite baffling. I mean, I love all the quaint little roads and rose bushes but for this we needed something relatively plain but definitely more industrial. In the end it came to me - perhaps the only part of town that reminds me of the big smoke - a subway under the roundabout under the Shepherd and Flock pub. It just goes to show that sometimes all you need for a good location is a subway under the road and some creativity πŸ’ͺ🏼

It was one of the hottest days of the year, I was wearing shorts and a vest, so a bloomin' well done to Onyxeia for not complaining about the zero suit heat even once.

Can't wait for any future photoshoots together, watch this space 😎

Blue Hues

A couple of weeks ago I had the absolute pleasure of photographing Clara who has such awesome blue hair. As it turned out, she lives about 100m away from me, so it was a super chilled out photo session where we got to chat and say hello, as well as getting some great photos.

My aim with this photo session was trifold - firstly, I was meeting Clara for the first time so I wanted to get to know her and make things much less awkward. Secondly, I wanted to provide Clara with some great images and thirdly I wanted to potentially photograph some images to submit to a book cover agency that I belong to. I consider the result a resounding success!

Clara's beautiful hair colour immediate sets the tone for the whole photo, and it was such a new thing for me to edit, but it was great to work with such different colours and tones.

I'm always open to working with new and aspiring models, so if you're ever interested please do send me a message :)

Jas x

Chester in Chichester

The way I love to photograph families is not through careful posing and rigidly set up photos, but is to capture their family essence in a much more authentic way. I like to spend some time with families, and capture moments as they happen naturally. 

Here are some photos from a photo session with little Chester and his family last weekend - our plans where to have some fun at their holiday home in Chichester and then go for a walk along the nearby beach. 

There’s a certain a lot of things we did to encourage the photos - mostly involving making sure that Chester was interested and happy and planning some little exertions, but the best photographs are sometimes in the unexpected. The little ducks at the top just happened to wander by, they were so friendly and tame and Chester loved them to pieces.

These are the kind of moments I would rather remember.

Jas x