I have finally finished my new website, yay! It’s been a long winded project and I have worked really hard on it. From now on I will be blogging from the new website and not here on my wordpress site. If you want to find my new blog, go here: Cecelina Photography Blog. However, this blog will stay here and hopefully attract some people my way! You are warmly welcome to share this new adventure with me!
So much I can’t really describe it. It is kind of newly-in-love-excitement or I-have-just-won-the-lottery-happiness or i-can’t-wait-for-this-exciting-challenge-just-put-a-camera-in-my-hands-right-now. I know many photographers shy away from shooting weddings and I can understand why for a number of reasons (the stress, working in ANY kind of weather, the hundreds of people on your workplace, the pressure of things only happening once…) and I know that particularly in the fashion industry, wedding photographers doesn’t really have the status or respect I feel they should have.
I started photographing fashion, that was my main goal and my main ambition. To be a very successful fashion photographer. And though I am completely in love with shooting editorial fashion, somewhere along the way I felt I needed something more from the experience and my work. It is wonderful taking pictures, creating art and get paid for it, but I also wanted my photographs to mean something to people and I wanted to know I made a difference.
I started shooting weddings for friends and quite quickly fell in love with how I felt when delivering images to a couple after their big day had passed. I loved the moments, the challenge, the bright images, the happy people and the meaning a simple photograph could have for someone.
It was really difficult setting up a business. To get accepted and to know how to talk to clients, build a website, start blogging (I really took my time with this, but now it’s my main source of clients). What is my brand and what do I want to be to people? What will Cecelina Photography be? The past three years I have read numerous books, articles and essays, seen lectures and gone to seminars, stayed up through the nights watching Youtube tutorials on a myriad of topics. Branding, social media, lighting techniques, retouching, marketing, organisation, web design, workflow. And I have done all this because it was my dream to do what I adore, be a photographer. And also because I love learning new things. You can’t just copy what everyone else is doing, ultimately you are selling yourself and your art, your time, talent and experience. Your business needs to be YOU. My business needed to be happy, caring, emotional, hard working, slightly shy, loving and new. Just like me.
The wedding photography industry is tough and I have been through a lot of hard times, but it is incredibly rewarding in the end. Every time I book a wedding, meet a couple or get a lovely testimonial sent to me, I do a little happy dance (Yes, I actually have a happy-dance) and my stomach flutters. Like being in love. It’s just SO GREAT to do what I do!
Does that in any way translate how I feel about my job? Today I booked another wedding for next year, got a brand new enquiry, finished editing last weekends engagement shoot, planned this weekends engagement shoot and have done the last bit of tweaking to my new website. Happy, happy, happy!
Do you know what could make me even more happy? If you go to Facebook and share my page to your friends. Spreading my business keeps me being able to do what I love. Thank you to everyone who is and has been supporting me throughout my adventure!
I met up with Jack and Erika in north London for their pre wedding session and the weather seems to finally have realised it is summer! This lovely couple is getting married in Sweden this summer and I couldn’t be more excited! Their wedding day also falls on to my favourite Swedish holiday – Midsummer, a night full of magic in Swedish folklore. Both Jack and Erika have grown up in Britain and went to school together from the age of 11. Being friends developed into something more when they saw each other again at a reunion five years ago.They chose the rural church in south of Sweden for their big day since generations of Erika’s family has got married there. I am sure it will be an amazing day indeed.
A little bit shy at first at the sight of the camera, Jack and Erika soon eased into being very natural and just enjoying their day together. I was there to capture some stunning images of the two of them and I had such a great time (and I think they did too)! More images to come…
Britain Pre Wedding Session Sweden – London Couple Engagements – Swedish Wedding Photographer London
Where is the sun? I bet all London Wedding Photographers are asking the same question right now. We want sunshine, blossoming flowers, deep blue skies and no worried brides! We don’t want to cancel pre wedding session because you can’t get outdoors without being soaked and swept away by cold winds. We want to skip around sunny fields and take pictures of back lit couples in summer clothes. These past few weeks has been really horrible and wet and I (who usually loves rain), has been down and out in a viral infection. No motivation, a bit to much work to do to completely let myself rest and a today who just says no. After a very relaxing weekend in the Lake District this bank holiday, I have managed to get myself back upon my feet and ready to take on new challenges!
My wedding photographer friend Louise Bjorling came over to my house one day last week and had coffee. She snapped off a few pictures of me in the back yard and below is the result. Have you ever seen a more tired wedding photographer than that, who has NOT photographed a 12 hour wedding the night before? I think not. I still had fever at that moment, so excuse me for my lazy expression. The image to the right is taken at Kew Gardens last year.
I. Can’t. Wait. For. Sunshine.
I am meeting a wedding couple today for a wedding in April 2013 and have a pre wedding shoot on Saturday with an amazing British couple getting married in Sweden this summer. May the weather gods be kind!
As my new website is almost up and running I am doing some changes around my web hosting. So for the next week I will only be reached on my personal email firstname.lastname@example.org for all enquiries and availability. My work email email@example.com will not work during this period, but it should be up and running soon again (I will let you know when). Sorry for the inconvenience!
Soon comes the reveal of my new wedding photography blog and website, I am extremely excited about this! For now, here are more wedding photography sweets from St Stephen’s church, a civil ceremony wedding close to my heart.
“Cecelina was recommended to us by a friend and we were thrilled with the service she provided. She was friendly and helpful throughout our planning, and really put us and our guests at ease on the day. And even though we weren’t having a conventional ceremony she seemed to have an instinctive understanding of exactly what we wanted.”
The north London wedding was held in St Stephen’s church near Belsize Park and Hampstead. Wedding photography don’t get more enjoyable than this!
North London Wedding- St Stephen’s Church Wedding Belsize Park – Wedding Photography Candid Style – Natural Wedding Photos
I have been ill. And I hate being ill. There’s just so many things in my life I want to do. Learn how to play the guitar, meet more couples and document their love, photograph people, learn French. So last week when I ended up in bed unable to move or speak I felt again (as I always feel when I’m ill) – what a waste of time! I could be blogging right now, read a French novel or make sure I replace the broken string on my guitar… On the other hand, I also know deep down that I am this ill because I try to do too many things at the same time. I work too hard sometimes, for too little money sometimes, trying to make everyone happy (most of the time) and forget that my business and success is dependant on myself being there to run it.
So I have decided – again – that I need to value my time and my skills better than I have before. So welcome the new Cecelina Photography, soon with a complete new website, updated collections, a portrait section, less focus on the fashion and more focus on what I love most – my couples and all the lovely people I’m lucky enough to photograph. In the meantime I’m going to take care of myself a bit, and actually say no to work I don’t feel I have time with or that won’t be valuable to myself and my business. How do you like them apples?
So I have been absent from the blog for a while (while spending my entire holiday in France in bed), but apart from getting better I have managed to book some new exciting jobs (including promotion images for a talented singer) and I have set up a website for a make up artist. I also worked on a boho bridal photo shoot last weekend, hopefully to be presented online very soon. For now, here are the behind the scenes images from that shoot. We set it at my photographer friend’s (Elyse Marks Photography) studio in Hackney Wick. The sun was shining but the winds were cold and by the end of the day I felt like I had been hit by a bus. But the images turned out great!
Behind the scenes photo shoot – London bridal photographer – make up bridal photo shoot London
Alison and Yang are getting married this year I had the opportunity to photograph them about a week ago when the sun shone high over Hampstead here in London. What ever happened to the fantastic weather, I heard rumours of snow?! We had a stroll in the sunshine with their adorable puppy Moshi, named after a Chinese rice dessert. Have you ever seen a cuter dog? What an amazing couple they are too! They have known each other since their school years and are now tying the knot in London this summer. It’s only 6 months until their wedding, so good luck guys with all your planning and I know your wedding will be amazing!
Part of why I love engagement photography is that I get to meet all these amazing London couples! Pre wedding photography, which is complimentary in all my full day wedding collections, is a great way for me to get to know a couple, how they interact with each other and who they are as individuals as well as in a partnership. An image can be technically stunning, but if it doesn’t show you off as a couple, you will never look on the images as being true. Pre wedding photography is also a great way to try out poses and for me to give tips on poses if you feel that you are uncomfortable in front of the camera (which most people seems to be!).
Have a look at my pre wedding photography portfolio here: Engagements/Couple Photos, and also see my wedding photography prices here: wedding photography quote. I would love to hear your story and what you are planning for your big day, so please email me with your enquiries and wedding date availability!
London Engagement Photography – Couple Photography Hampstead – Wedding Photographer North London – Pre Wedding Photography
A few weeks ago I was at the Four Seasons Hotel at Hyde Park Corner to photograph a children’s birthday party for an incredibly sweet 1-year-old baby girl. As a children’s birthday photographer, I took pictures of the decorations, the kids and the guests, as well as the entertainment put on for the children. I had the chance to try out my new lens (Canon 70-200mm L f2.8 USM IS II) and got some beautiful, candid shots of the children, laughing and playing around. Something I absolutely love about photographing children’s parties are all the vivid colours which makes for beautiful photographs and suits my style of photography very well. Mix that with 20 absolutely adorable kids and we have a recipe for success!
The Four Seasons Hotel is beautiful and the reception room was decorated with balloons, banners, presents and even had a little candy bar or sweet shop! My new lens allows me to stand a bit away from the children and take closeups and at the same time not disturbing them in their play. It makes for very natural and candid photography. When working with children you have to be very friendly and smily while making sure not to be intimidating. A tip for all aspiring children’s portrait photographers out there is to smile a lot, play with the children and be incredibly friendly with the parents too! Not everyone at a party would like their child photographed so be respectful and ask if you are unsure. I absolutely love it!
London Portrait Photographer Children – Kids Birthday Photographer London – Four Seasons Hotel Event Photography – 1 year old Party Decorations
Ooo, I debated whether to write this post or not…
Every now and then I do something that scares me. I strongly believe in order for you to grow you have to face your fears to be more comfortable with yourself and to really get that feeling of “Yeah, I did it!”. I did that when I packed up my bags in Sweden, gave up my home and got on a plane to London three years ago. Most my life I have hated being photographed and made sure I was on the other side of the camera when any picture was taken, I guess it’s girl thing. Or actually, it’s a human thing, as I know in most my wedding couples, it is the groom that has the most fearful feelings against the camera..?
Last year I got the opportunity to be photographed myself, something that initially made me cringe. I seriously considered not going through with it, but three things made me change my mind in the end. First of all, I tell all my clients how important I think it is to have a memory of every stage in your life and that you will regret not having images if yourself when being older. I’m not talking about some party images on Facebook on someone’s iPhone, but professional photographs showing off your personality. Secondly, I felt the need to put myself in the shoes of my clients. How it’s like being on the other end of the lens (especially when you’re not really fond of it). Finally… The challenge-yourself-thing again.
I was lucky to work with a great photographer who knew how to make me relax and I am happy to say I have put my 25th year in existence into history (now let’s hope my grandchildren will be able to view a digital jpg in however many years?).
Last week, I went to a see a film called Up In Smoke and faced another thing that scares me – one of my idols. The film was presented by Dame Vivienne Westwood, a woman I truly respect both for what she has done for the fashion industry, but also for what she does for the environment. For all you who haven’t seen it, you can watch the film online here: Up In Smoke (and I truly recommend it). I got a chance to speak to the Director of the film who also had an experience of putting himself out there, as he had never done a film before he started this project. All the luck and strength to people who challenge themselves (even if it’s just having your picture taken…). Or posting something personal to your blog?