All posts by jbpadmin

Studio Session – Baby Harley

Thank heavens for little girls

It’s a baby girl!

It feels like an age since I had a baby girl in the studio so when Miss Harley came in at 15 days new it was love at first sight – well for me anyway 🙂

Baby Girl - JB Moments Photography

Look at those cheeks and those rosebud lips. Absolute perfection!

Flower Power

Mum had mentioned in the pre-shoot questionnaire that she loved flowers and fairies but was happy to be guided by me. I didn’t have anything fairy related for a baby but flowers, flowers I could do.

Baby Girl - JB Moments Photography

I had been wanting to use this sunflower composite for ages and this was just the excuse I needed (just in case you’d thought I’d somehow shrunk the baby or found a humungous sunflower!!).

She looks very peaceful in her sunflower slumber but soon she was wide awake and looking straight at me!

Baby Girl - JB Moments Photography
This wasn’t what I meant when I said ‘bucket list’!
Baby Mugshots

So I used the fact that she was awake to my advantage to try out my new mugshot style. These are simple black and white images that focus on expressions. My plan is to also offer them at my 4, 8 and 12 month grow with me sessions and I think it will be cool to see how their little personalities develop over the year.

Baby Girl - JB Moments Photography

In terms of wall art, black and white images are timeless classics.

When two become three

Miss Harley’s parents weren’t sure they were up for being in the images at first but they soon came around, especially for a silhouette image that focuses purely on their connection and love as a new family unit.

Family Photography by JB Moments Photography

I just adore these images so much 🙂

Up, up and away

Harley was a total dreamboat to work with. Even when she decided that she was done with sleeping she just watched me with her big blue eyes, quite content. Our session was over far too quickly. I made good use of the time mum and dad needed to put on their coats to get as many snuggles with Harley as possible. And yes if I’m honest there may have been some head sniffing going on as well!

Baby Girl - JB Moments Photography

Dream big, little one.

Dalmeny Kirk – Mary & John’s Wedding

Rain on your wedding day is good luck because it signifies that your marriage will last. As you know, a knot that becomes wet is extremely hard to untie – therefore, when you ‘tie the knot’ on a rainy day, your marriage is supposedly just as hard to unravel!

Storm Dennis

So rain on your wedding day is good luck, what about Storm Dennis? Yup the day that Mary and John tied the knot we were treated to a months worth of rain in one day and gale force winds! Not that Mary and John need any luck. They got together over 30 years ago and had always talked about marriage but just hadn’t gotten around to it. Then at Christmas, they surprised their families by announcing they had been secretly organising a February wedding for 6 months!

 Solid foundations

Wedding at Dalmeny Kirk by JB Moments Photography

The wedding ceremony was held at Dalmeny Kirk Scotlands oldest Norman Kirk. I nipped outside to grab a quick image before the bride arrived. Not my best composition but speed was of the essence to get back inside from the weather.

Wedding at Dalmeny Kirk by JB Moments Photography

On my way back inside I also spotted some snowdrops to capture, then I really had to get back inside!

Family affair

Mary and John’s wedding was an intimate affair involving their nearest and dearest.

Wedding at Dalmeny Kirk by JB Moments Photography

John’s brother Frank was his best man.

Wedding at Dalmeny Kirk by JB Moments Photography

One of Mary’s sons drove her to church and the other gave her away. Doesn’t she look beautiful? I love how she used John’s tartan for her shawl and she made her bouquet and that of her bridesmaid herself. Oh and her bridesmaid, John’s daughter. 🙂

A most romantic setting

Wedding at Dalmeny Kirk by JB Moments Photography

With Storm Dennis rattling all the doors and lashing down outside, the kirk really was a beautiful setting for John and Mary to exchange their vows and rings. The warm stone softly illuminated by candlelight added to the atmosphere.

Wedding at Dalmeny Kirk by JB Moments Photography

Outside for group photos?

Wedding at Dalmeny Kirk by JB Moments Photography

Hahahahahaha I don’t think so. We took all the group photos and bride and groom portraits inside. I always have an inside Plan B as being a wedding photographer in Scotland means that good weather is never guaranteed. Nobody wanted to go outside in that Storm!

Wedding at Dalmeny Kirk by JB Moments Photography

I always carry wedding umbrellas as well, as sometimes bride and groom portraits in the rain, can look stunning. But not in gale-force winds. I did cajole Mary and John to the entrance of the kirk so we could document the weather on their wedding day.

Wedding at Dalmeny Kirk by JB Moments Photography

I got a broken umbrella for my troubles!

On the shore

Mary and John held their wedding reception at The Boathouse in South Queensferry. Originally I had planned to get some images on the shore with the iconic bridges in the background but when I got to the venue I got this.

Wedding at The Boat House by JB Moments Photography

What you don’t get from this image is a sense of the howling wind and horizontal rain! Everyone was far better off inside the cosy restaurant, where they could still enjoy the beautiful views.

Wedding at The Boat House by JB Moments Photography

Mary and John were a super chilled, laid back couple who just wanted to enjoy the celebration with their family and close friends. And regardless of Storm Dennis, they did just that!

Congratulations Mr and Mrs Strachan.

 

Studio Sessions – Birthday Smashing & Splashing

Every birthday counts…especially the first one!

Miss Amber – the birthday girl

Amber’s mum got in touch for a studio session for Amber to celebrate her first birthday milestone. It always makes my heart sing when clients return again and again. Miss Amber is no exception. I’ve been lucky enough to see this lovely a few times now.

In my pre-shoot questionnaire, I always ask if there are any particular themes or colours and mum asked for a pastel theme. I had just the thing!

First birthday images by JB Moments Photography

I always like to start without the cake (or whatever the birthday girl/boy is smashing) so I can get some ‘clean’ shots for the parents and grandparents to commemorate the milestone.

Did somebody say Cake?

Then comes the fun starts! I like to introduce the food that is being smashed with a wooden spoon as some children like to bash the food with a spoon and others (see Alex later) prefer a more hands-on approach!

First birthday images by JB Moments Photography
Mmmmmm cake!

Miss Amber choose to start with the spoon but then found her hands much more effective.

First birthday images by JB Moments Photography

Maximum mess, this girl definitely got the memo 🙂

First birthday images by JB Moments Photography
I’m having a smashing time!
Bubbly good fun

I introduced the ‘Splash’ element last year for two reasons: 1. the bubble bath, tin bath and rubber ducks add another look for the client’s overall gallery and; 2. it helps clean up the little person!

First birthday images by JB Moments Photography

Miss Amber loved the bubble machine. She also enjoyed getting in and out of the bath and I got some super cute images of her little bottom that are too cheeky (see what I did there!) to share here. Mum asked for those images in black and white so she can create a gorgeous image for her bathroom. Love that idea!

Happy birthday beautiful x

Master Alex – the birthday boy

Talking of returning clients. I have loved seeing Master Alex every 4 months or so to document his first year. His Granny took my “Grow with Me” package after his newborn session. This culminated in his first birthday smash and splash.

First birthday images by JB Moments Photography

A very hands-on approach

When Master Alex was introduced to the cake and spoon he took one look at the spoon and dismissed it immediately. He went straight in for a huge handful!

First birthday images by JB Moments Photography

And straight after….another!

First birthday images by JB Moments Photography

I think he liked it!

First birthday images by JB Moments Photography
Finger licking good
Tub Time

Master Alex had managed to get hundreds and thousands everywhere, including up his nose! So it was time for his clean up.

First birthday images by JB Moments Photography

Which he thoroughly enjoyed.

Happy birthday dude x

 

Tips for choosing your Wedding Colour Scheme

Picking your wedding colours is sometimes easier said than done, but it’s an important step in your planning process. In addition to being an extension of your personal styles as a couple, a carefully chosen colour palette can make all the difference when creating a cohesive wedding look. It’s a good idea to start thinking about your wedding colours shortly after you’ve set a date and chosen a venue, but how should you begin? By considering your basic wedding details, such as season, location, and theme, you can start to narrow down the colours that will play into the look you want. Once you’ve decided on your colours, all of the other details will fall into place, from flowers and stationery to wedding party attire, table linens, and more.

Choose a base colour

Your base colour will be the one that’s used most prominently throughout your wedding. The base colour can be anything from soft blush pink or peach to elegant navy blue, punchy yellow, or even dramatic jade green, depending on the overall vibe you want to create. Most importantly, it should be a colour you genuinely love! Once you have your base colour, the next step is to choose a handful of complementary “accent” colours — generally two or three of them. These accents will round out your wedding palette, adding dimension and variation to prevent the colours from being over-the-top matchy-matchy or kitschy. Your accents can be anything from bold, contrasting hues on the opposite side of the colour wheel, to neutral tones like grey, white, black, or beige. No base colour yet? Keep reading for more advice on how to pick your wedding colours from scratch.
Wedding photographer - JB Moments Photography

Think about your wedding season

While there’s nothing written in stone that says your wedding colours should match up with your wedding season, we can’t argue that some colours lend themselves naturally to certain times of the year. If you’re feeling stuck when choosing a colour palette, look to your wedding season for a bit of inspiration. Dark jewel tones, such as emerald green, plum purple, navy blue, and marsala red, for example, tend fit in better with cold weather surroundings, like changing foliage in the autumn or white snow in the winter. Bold and bright colours are generally more appropriate for a summer celebration, while pastel hues are traditionally associated with springtime weddings.

What about your Venue

Consider the colours of your chosen venue. Are there any particularly distinctive tones on any of the walls, carpets or furniture? If so, it’s worth working with that colour rather than against it, either incorporating it into your scheme or choosing complementary shades – there’s nothing worse than a room full of décor that clashes with the carpet!

If your venue offers more of a blank canvas – a barn, for example – then consider the amount of light and the size of the space available. Opt for light colours in a smaller venue to make it feel brighter. Darker colours can still be used, but be aware that they will create an intimate feel that might not suit every couple’s tastes.

Flowers

If your heart is set on a specific bloom and you really don’t want to swap, you might want to base your wedding colour scheme around the shades of your chosen flowers. So if blue hydrangeas or bold sunflowers are on your must-have list, make blue your accent colour throughout, paired with a complementary tone.

Wedding photographer - JB Moments Photography

Clothing

Likewise, if you’re desperate to choose a grey, gold, blush or pale blue gown or your partner only wants to wear hunter green, it’s probably worth adapting your colour palette to fit. Make sure your bridesmaids and groomsmen’s outfits work well with the scheme, too. After all, they all need to look good together for the photos!

Accessories

If you’re still struggling to pin down a wedding colour scheme, look to your accessories for inspiration. Have you chosen a statement handbag or pair of shoes? Gemstone jewellery? Take the colour of your accessory and let it influence the rest of your décor decisions, using it as your accent colour for a pretty palette.

Play up your palette with gradient

Can’t decide on a collection of colours that look good together? Keep it simple by sticking with one colour and opting for an ombré-inspired palette instead. You don’t need an assortment of different colours to create a gorgeous palette. For example, a wedding with three or four shades of blue (or whichever colour you like best!) can look just as beautiful as one with a rainbow of colours. This option is also excellent for creating a more modern, monochromatic look with your wedding decor.

 

What will your wedding colour scheme be?

Studio Session – Baby Sebastian

First we had each other then we had you now we have everything.

Family Photography by JB Moments Photography

First baby of 2020

Baby Sebastian was 19 days new when he came into the studio on the 2nd day of 2020 and completely stole my heart.

Years ago I worked with his mum’s bestie (if by work you mean meeting for copious cups of tea and bitching about the place we worked at – then we worked hard!). She got in touch to buy a newborn photoshoot as a baby gift. That’s the perfect BFF right there!

Wide awake club

I’d established with mum that Sebastian was most sleepy in the afternoon so that’s when we booked the session. However, as I always tell parents their baby will always choose the day of their photoshoot to change their routine. Sebastian was no exception! But that’s okay because I get beautiful wide awake images for their gallery as well as sleepy ones. Plus it means I get more time snuggling with the baby as I attempt to get them to nod off. Win-win!

Baby Boy - JB Moments Photography
Nope, counting sheep isn’t going to send me to sleep!
What the heck are you doing to me?

I thought with one of the backdrops I was using my mohair teddy bonnet would look super cute on Sebastian.

Baby Boy - JB Moments Photography

And it did, but I also love his angry expression in this image. It’s like he is totally mad at me for daring to put him in the hat!

Being a model is exhausting

Eventually being fed and swaddled started to work its magic.

Baby Boy - JB Moments Photography
I’m so tired of being admired.

Master Sebastian decided my bucket prop was the perfect place to take a little power nap.

Baby Boy - JB Moments Photography

Look at those pouty lips and perfectly kissable cheeks. Baby perfection right there!

Family is a beautiful word

I always ask mum and dad at the beginning of the session if they want pictures of them with their new bundle of joy. A lot of parents are self-conscious and not sure if they want to be in front of the camera. Being parents is all-new, as is not getting much sleep. Sebastian’s parents were no exception. I always say the same thing. These images are not for you, they are for your baby when they get old enough to understand – you want them to see how loved they were as soon as they were born. I ease them into it with a silhouette image like the one at the beginning of this blog and then if they want to stop there it’s fine. But I’m delighted that Sebastian’s parents then choose to have images taken with him individually and together as a family unit. I think Sebastian is going to adore these images when he is older and be in absolutely no doubt about how utterly loved he is.

Family Photography by JB Moments Photography

 

Airth Castle – Audrey and Johnny’s Wedding

I Love Ewe

My sheep puns are so baaaaaaa-d (sorry, not sorry!) but I couldn’t resist. You see when Audrey Lamb and her Clydesdale Horses met Johnny and his sheep at the Royal Highland Show it was a match made in farming community heaven. So much so that Johnny proposed at the Highland Show a few years later. Audrey said, ‘Baby don’t herd me’. No, she didn’t – I’m going to stop horsing around now. Okay, I really am finished now!

Last wedding of the year

On the 30th December 2019, literally with one day of the year left to spare this wonderful couple tied the knot in the beautiful opulence of Airth Castle. I was delighted to have been chosen to capture the day for them as it was a day full of love and laughter with all their friends and family around them.

What an old romantic

The night before the wedding Johnny presented Audrey with a gift to wear on the day. A stunning pair of diamond earrings.

Wedding Photographer - JB Moments Photography

They were a lovely ‘something new’. Her something ‘old’ was her mum’s amazing veil.

An Irishman

Wedding at Airth Castle by JB Moments Photography

Johnny and his family are from Ireland and opted for waistcoats and tails as their wedding attire. His brother and his nephew were his best men whilst his other brother and friend were ushers. The one Scot did his bit and wore a kilt! Don’t they all look handsome?

The weather miraculously stayed dry when we needed it to. Whilst it threatened to rain most of the day it didn’t and stayed uncharacteristically mild for the time of year. Whilst I would have loved to take wedding images in the crisp white snow. the reality would have been more slushy and bad weather may have stopped guests from getting there.

 A lovely ceremony

The ceremony was held in the old castle in a gorgeous high ceilinged room in front of a stunning fireplace and ornate mirror.

Wedding at Airth Castle by JB Moments Photography

As  Audrey’s brother walked the beautiful bride down the aisle I think it all became very real and emotional for her.

Wedding at Airth Castle by JB Moments Photography

The minister soon helped to calm any nerves and had the couple (and the congregation) laughing and singing during the service.

Due to that big and beautiful mirror above the fireplace, I spent most of the service on my knees in order to make sure I wasn’t captured in the reflection! I did like the perspective it gave the images though.

Whilst the new Mr and Mrs Aiken signed the register with the bridal party Audrey’s cousin sang for the wedding guests. A very talented family (more on that later).

A full house

There were c. 100 guests during the day to celebrate the union between Audrey and Johnny. Sometimes this sort of group size brings me out in a cold sweat as the venue doesn’t always have a great space to capture the group photos in a pleasing way. For this wedding, I had no such issues. The steps outside the old castle are just perfect.

Wedding at Airth Castle by JB Moments Photography

Despite being mild for the time of year it was still too cold to keep everybody outside for long. When I had met Audrey at the venue for our pre-wedding consultation I had decided that one of the formal reception rooms would be perfect. Once I did a little rearranging of the furniture and lugged the wing-backed chairs over to the fireplace!

Wedding at Airth Castle by JB Moments Photography

I think the images have a slight royal wedding vibe! Love it 🙂

A new version of a classic

Also at the pre-wedding consultation, Audrey’s mum mentioned an image from her own wedding that she would love Audrey to recreate. She was stood at the top of the staircase and her beautiful veil was the star of the show. As Audrey was using her veil it would be nice to do it again.  We found a suitable staircase in the castle and I hope I’ve done it justice.

Wedding at Airth Castle by JB Moments Photography

Whilst we were wrangling the stairs we also made use of the top balcony for some bride and groom portraits.

Wedding at Airth Castle by JB Moments Photography

As I am mean I still got the bride and groom outside for some natural portraits and I just love the results.

Wedding at Airth Castle by JB Moments Photography

The speeches

Ohhh emmm geee the speeches! Full kudos has to go to Johhny’s brother for his best man speech. So much planning had gone into it. Shortly after he started his speech he claimed he couldn’t find his remaining notes. He dashed out of the room and a pre-made video started of him ‘allegedly’ running out of the venue into his car back to his house and various other places to the tune of the Benny Hill theme tune!!! I can’t share what he got up to in the video here (keeping it PG, folks) but everybody was in absolute stitches.

Wedding at Airth Castle by JB Moments Photography

The video ended with him running back into the room and then his son and daughter (who was also a bridesmaid) read out a poem they had written. Everyone was laughing so hard, including me – it was difficult to stop my camera shaking!

Wedding at Airth Castle by JB Moments Photography

It was also during the speeches that I learned that Audrey had come 2nd in the world sheep handling trials. Told you it was a talented family!

Let them eat cake and dance

With the evening guests arrived it was time to cut the stunning three-tier cake decorated with thistles.

Wedding at Airth Castle by JB Moments Photography

Then Audrey and Johnny’s first dance as husband and wife.

Wedding at Airth Castle by JB Moments Photography

This wedding was an absolute joy to capture. So much love, laughter and well wishes emanated from all their family and friends as well as the couple themselves. It was time for me to take my leave but the party looked set to run well into the small hours.

Congratulations Mr and Mrs Aiken.

Wedding at Airth Castle by JB Moments Photography

 

Studio Session – Rhys and Ellie’s Gift

The gift of memories

Rhys (12) and Ellie’s (9) gran got in touch with me early November last year to ask if I would shoot her two grandkids as a Christmas surprise for her daughter. It wasn’t until they came into the studio at the end of November that I realised it was their idea. Rhys and Ellie had come up with the present idea for their mum. Then they had convinced gran to be their accomplice!

Christmas surprise

Now I love the idea of the gift of memories.  Christmas time is when I sell the most gift vouchers for family sessions and the like. But these guys wanted to give their mum something physical to unwrap and I was totally up for being part of the conspiracy 😉

I feel like the session was ages ago now and I have been itching to share their cute images. But mum was literally the word and any sharing might have spoiled the surprise.

Sunday Best

Rhys and Ellie came dressed in their best outfits. I think they had snuck out of the house in them on the pretence of going out to lunch with gran and grandad afterwards. Any way to warm them up I took some pictures of them individually as well as together. As well as making sure they had lots of options to make their selection from.

Miss Ellie

Child photography by JB Moments Photography

I mean how pretty is this little lady? (Answer: very). Not only that she was super polite and thoughtful. She clearly doted on her big brother as well. I loved the fullness of her checked party dress so I had lots of fun getting her to twirl around in it.

Master Rhys

Child photography by JB Moments Photography

Despite being almost a teenager big brother Rhys was charming. He was such a cool dude in his skinny jeans and polo shirt.

The winning shot

I could’ve taken images of these two all-day – they were such good kids. We even got gran involved in some of them. But as usual, I was checking the back of my camera and saw this image and knew I’d nailed it.

Child photography by JB Moments Photography

And I was right! It was the picture the kids picked and had printed and framed for their mum. Rhys even emailed me himself to order the prints and to thank me for the gallery.

What I didn’t realise was that they actually lived at the top of my street so after Christmas when I was walking the dogs this woman came running over to me. ‘I’m Rhys and Ellie’s mum’ she said, ‘their gift made me cry, it was so beautiful, thank you’. That, dear friends, is job satisfaction right there 🙂

 

Wedding Stress Management: How To Reduce Stress While Planning Your Big Day

January Blues

Now that you’re back at work the excitement of your Christmas or New Year proposal can feel a distant memory and as you stare out the window at the dank, dismal weather all you can think of is ‘where do I start?’

Planning a wedding is incredibly exciting, but it can also be very stressful. On the surface, many brides and grooms try to hide the pressure and anxiety they’re feeling, and might even feel ashamed that they’re struggling to cope with stress during a period that should be the “happiest time of their life”.

But the truth is that every aspect of putting together an event as big as a wedding is a mammoth task in itself. It’s only natural that between worrying about your budget and how to make everyone happy, your mental health can fall down your list of priorities.

But if you begin dealing with your stress and finding tricks to help you manage, it is possible to enjoy the process of wedding planning and put the focus back on you, your relationship and your upcoming marriage.

Mental health charity Mind suggests the warning symptoms of stress that you should look out for and the best ways to reduce stress.

Stress Symptoms

An event as big as a wedding does require you to juggle lots of commitments and financial concerns so it’s natural to feel some stress, says Stephen Buckley, Head of Information at Mind.

“Being under pressure is a normal part of life and can be useful in small amounts. But if you become overwhelmed by stress, these feelings could start to be a problem.

“Stress in itself is not a mental health problem, but prolonged, unmanageable stress can lead to mental health problems like depression or anxiety,” he says.

The effects of stress can be emotional, mental and physical, and it won’t always be obvious that you’re suffering from stress so it’s important to know what to look out for.

“Unmanageable stress affects us all in different ways, but there are signs to look out for, such as feeling irritated, drinking or smoking excessively, finding it hard to sleep or struggling to concentrate.

“You may feel really upset and emotional, or feel like crying. You might also notice some physical signs, like headaches, upset stomach, or difficulty breathing. Severe stress can affect your blood pressure too,” Stephen says.

When the behaviour of a bride changes, she can often be dismissed as a “bridezilla”, but it could be time to step back and ask whether stress is becoming an issue for you. Behavioural changes include snapping at people; being tearful; constantly worrying, and you might find it harder to make decisions which can make you even more frustrated with yourself.

For a full list of symptoms, visit Mind’s website

How To Reduce Stress

Here are the best self-care tips to cope with stress and help protect your mental health during wedding planning (and if self-care sounds like a word you’d hate, I promise you won’t hate this sensible advice.

Spend Time With Your Support Network

Connecting with people is so important for our mental wellbeing. Don’t isolate yourself from friends or family in favour of your to-do list.

Brides, if you really can’t let go of the wedding preparations then get your bridesmaids around and do some décor crafting with them. It’ll tick one thing off your list and you get some good quality girl time too. Grooms, get your mates together for a kickabout, to play some video games or watch a match.

Family, however well-meaning, can be a big stressor during wedding planning. Get your parents or siblings over for a Sunday roast, ban the topic of weddings for a few hours and just catch-up. If they’re truly toxic to your health though, don’t feel bad about taking some time away for a while.

Go On A Digital Detox

If Pinterest has basically replaced your partner, take a social media detox. A number of studies have linked social media use with depression, anxiety, sleep problems and body image and body confidence issues. Whether it’s creating a wedding way beyond your budget on Pinterest or staring at the bodies of Victoria’s Secret models on Instagram, social media can be a great source of dissatisfaction and anxiety.

going on a digital detox

Try deleting the apps from your mobile so your access is limited to when you’re at your laptop. Alternatively made a rule where both of you put your phone to one side for a couple of hours to have dinner and watch an episode on Netflix. Your relationship will benefit as will your mental health.

Re-Discover Activities That Make You Happy

If every evening is spent with your Excel spreadsheets and your lunch break is spent calling suppliers, then you’re unlikely to be devoting as much time to the activities that used to make you happy and relaxed.

Whether it’s going for a walk, zoning out with an audiobook, painting, taking a bath, listening to music or even watching your favourite trashy TV show, make sure you get that ‘me time’ every day when you focus on no one else’s needs but your own

take a bath

Make A Done List

At the end of every day (or at least once a week), note down all the things you’ve completed that day and celebrate the small wins. To-do lists can send you into a panic and actually hinder your effectiveness, but an “I’ve done” list makes you feel proud and strengthens your motivation.

Evidence has shown the importance of writing it down too, not just keeping it inside your head. Read them and marvel at how amazing you are and all the things you’ve achieved (however small those tasks may seem). You got this!

Get Some Fresh Air

Stephen says that three big factors in managing your stress are “eating healthily, sleeping well and making time for exercise.”

Reaching for the nearest chocolate bar or glass of wine are often our go-to responses to stress, but emotional eating and drinking can make problems even worse. Focus instead on following a balanced diet and finding an exercise regime that works for you. This doesn’t have to be strenuous: the NHS recommends 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity a week, and swimming, yoga or gentle walking are great places to start.

Evidence shows exercise can lower our risk of depression by 30%, improve sleep quality,  increase self-confidence and help us manage stress and anxiety. Grab one of your bridesmaids or groomsmen and sign up to a fitness class if having a buddy is more likely to get you moving. Just don’t beat yourself up if you miss a day!

If You’re On A Crash Diet, Stop!

We all want to look our best on our wedding day. But severely restricting your calorie intake will make you feel lethargic and irritable, give you headaches and bad breath, and could have some serious side effects on your mental health. According to the NHS, depriving your body of the nutrients it needs could lead to thinning hair and dull skin. Not ideal for your wedding photos!

On restricted calories, your body will go into starvation mode and your metabolic rate will plummet so you’ll actually find it harder to lose weight. The NHS suggests sensible weight loss is 1-2lbs a week, which equates to a healthy calorie deficit of 500-600 calories a day. For an average woman, that means eating 1,400-1,500 calories a day. Your body and mental health will thank you.

Establish A Sleep Routine

When you’re sleep-deprived, irritability and anger levels increase, while your ability to deal with stress decreases. It’s not always as easy as going to bed earlier. Often poor sleep leads to worrying, which leads to poor sleep, and so on in a vicious cycle.

establish a sleep routine

But it can be useful to establish a sleep routine: give yourself an hour before bed where you don’t look at any screens as the blue light can interfere with hormone production; establish a bedtime routine by going to bed and waking up at the same time every day; and find ways to help you relax such as taking a bath, meditating (YouTube has lots of sleep meditations you can follow) or trying some breathing exercises.

Learn To Say No

To that party or work meeting or volunteer project. Your time and energy are precious and it isn’t selfish to set boundaries, establish your needs and focus on the things that bring you joy. Don’t push people away, but don’t feel obliged to go to that dinner party.

learn to say no

To say no without the guilt, avoid feeling like you have to be “nice” and give a firm but polite no with a simple reason, like you’re already busy, not a list of excuses.

Write Down Your Worries

If you suffer from anxiety, then it can be really hard to stop worrying, but there are ways to help you control your anxiety.

Some people find that setting aside a specific time to focus on their worries can help, as can writing down what you’re worried about and keeping those thoughts in once place like a notebook.

Share Your Workload

The sheer number of things to do during wedding planning can be overwhelming but there are some practical ways to help. Firstly, break your list down into manageable tasks. Secondly, remember it doesn’t all have to fall on you and your partner’s shoulders!

Enlist trusted bridesmaids, groomsmen, parents and friends and delegate. In the final few weeks before the wedding, good tasks to allocate out include packing up items to take to the venue, confirming supplier arrangements (put someone very trusted in charge of this) and any wedding DIY tasks. On the day, have them meeting, greeting and directing suppliers, managing guests and keeping the day on schedule

share your workload

If you have the budget, consider bringing in a wedding planner. There’s a lot of misconceptions over cost and how involved they need to be, but most have a mixture of packages and their involvement is up to you.

Be Open

Planning a wedding should be a joint process so be open with your partner if you’re struggling. Your wedding isn’t about cute table settings; it’s about making a commitment to that person to share your futures together and your health is so much more important.

Stephen at Mind emphasises how crucial speaking to your partner, family or friends can be for reducing stress. “It’s very important to open up about how you feel to someone you trust. Bottling things up only increases the pressure on you,” he warns.

You might be worrying so much that you begin to worry whether it’s cold feet. If that happens take some time out to reconnect with your partner and remember why you’re marrying them. And reassure them that you freaking out isn’t about not wanting to marry, because that’s probably stressing them out too!

Be Kind To Yourself

Forgive yourself when you make a mistake or don’t finish your tasks for that day. Nobody’s perfect and extra pressure on yourself doesn’t help. Be realistic and remember that it’s OK to need a longer engagement and it’s OK to not have every quirky bit of DIY décor you’ve seen on Pinterest. You are not a terrible bride, don’t beat yourself up.

For more information and advice, contact Mind or your local GP.

Studio Session – Baby Callum

GRRRRRRRRR!

It is not like me to start a baby post with an angry rant, but please bear with me. Mums, especially brand new mums are made to feel guilty about everything. Are they breastfeeding? Is the baby eating enough, sleeping enough, going to the toilet enough? Have they got them too warm, too cold? Are they stimulated enough, too much? it goes on and on. What they absolutely do not need is baby photographers telling them their new bundle of joy is too old for newborn photos!!!

Guilt-free zone

Imagine being made to feel like you’d ‘missed’ an important milestone in your new babies life because you didn’t get them photographed as soon as you come out of hospital? I know that newborn babies can be easier to photograph in their first two weeks of life and as professional photographers we all love that. But, if mum has had a difficult labour or has lots of stitches she may not be ready to leave the house right away. Add to that being parents for the first time doesn’t come with an instruction manual. That first couple of weeks whizz by.

So when Callum’s mum came to me asking for newborn shoots for her baby who was 3 weeks old, after being told he was too old. I was more than happy to help. Because making sure my clients get a great experience and memories to treasure is the most important thing. ***Climbs off soapbox – rant over***.

Meet baby perfection

Introducing Master Callum.

Baby Boy - JB Moments Photography

Look at all that hair! Those pouty lips. Kissable cheeks. Button nose and eyelashes. Utter perfection! Mum and Dad had waited a very long time for this little dude to come into their lives. He was absolutely worth the wait and you could see they were utterly besotted with him. As was Gran who came along to watch this first milestone as well.

Look into my eyes

Callum was a very good boy sleeping between feeds. But he also treated us to some time awake. I love capturing your baby both awake and asleep. Callum’s facial expressions were hilarious and I had great fun capturing as many of them as possible.

Baby Boy - JB Moments Photography
Who are you and why are you pointing that camera at me?
Just hanging around

To be fair, he was pulling the cutest faces when he was sleeping as well.

Baby Boy - JB Moments Photography

He looks very pleased with himself in this one!

Christmas cheer

With his photography shoot being right at the end of November I had to introduce a little Christmas magic into Callum’s session.

Baby Boy - JB Moments Photography

Luckily he had fallen into a deep sleep so he couldn’t object to me turning him into the cutest little elf you ever did see!

Baby Boy - JB Moments Photography

Have your ELF a Merry Christmas Callum (sorry, not sorry!).

Studio Session – The Johnston Family

What do you get the glamorous mum for her birthday that already has it all…? A handsome husband, 4 gorgeous grown-up kids, a daughter-in-law (that is good at organising presents) and a brand new cute as a button two-month-old granddaughter. An updated family photoshoot, that’s what you get her!

I’m totally all for presents that give an experience rather than stuff and a gift of memories is one of the most precious gifts of all. Daughter in law Katie did good, very good (I’m just a bit worried that she has set the bar too high for Christmas now!!).

Meet the birthday girl

Family Photographer near Falkirk - JB Moments Photography

Woot woot! See what I mean about glamorous? You’d certainly never guess they had 4 adult kids, would you?

The Family Photo that started it all

Mum bought with her a photo that they’d had done as a family a few years ago and asked me if I could recreate it now her babies are all grown up. Such a fun idea and we included the original picture in the new one as well!

Family Photographer near Falkirk - JB Moments Photography

The boys have clearly had a growth spurt since the original!! The original image was on a brilliant white background.  I gave them a version of this image with the same background. But I must confess I prefer the more flattering cream tones of this background.

Of course, there are now two more additions to the family so to update the image properly let’s add in Katie and baby Elsie.

Family Photographer near Falkirk - JB Moments Photography

Look at Elsie, she’s a natural in front of the camera already!

Families within Families

As I give all the edited digital images to the family I made sure that we captured all the combinations. Including the newest little family.

Family Photographer near Falkirk - JB Moments Photography

Back to the Birthday Girl

I had to pose mum with her twin daughters.

Family Photographer near Falkirk - JB Moments Photography

As you can see good looks clearly run in the family.

And when I have grown up sons in the studio I love to have them kiss their mama. It always delights mum and makes the guys squirm a little!

Family Photographer near Falkirk - JB Moments Photography

Look at that grin!

The undisputed star of the Show!

Everybody wanted their photo with Miss Elsie. Mum, Dad, Granny, Grandad, Aunties and even her Uncle! I think the birthday girl was very happy to share the spotlight with this little cutie and as the first grandchild and niece, she is absolutely doted on. And rightly so.

I couldn’t resist finishing up with some photos of her by herself.

Family Photographer near Falkirk - JB Moments Photography

And just like that, after multiple combinations and lots of fun and laughter, the session was over. Have I mentioned I have the best job in the world?!