Friday, May 30, 2008

Caithness Photographic site back up and running!

At long last the site is back working. I had problems getting the domain transferred but it's back to normal now. Anyone who sent e-mails to, I need to apologise as they won't have arrived as the address attached to the website was also out of action.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Wick Academy

I was lucky enough to have no weddings on the last 2 Saturdays of the Highland League season, as this allowed me to cover Academy's games v Deveronvale and Fraserburgh. Academy won both games 3-2 in a great end to the season. Well done to everyone connected to the club for a very good season. The guys running the club now have really transformed things in recent times and I am delighted to be part of it from time to time. It's a great club and I wish them every success for next season. A few images from the Fraserburgh game.

Rory Stone for Mey Selections

Last week I did a shoot with Rory Stone of Highland Fine Cheeses in Tain. He travelled North to a dairy at Sibster, near Wick where we did some images of him, his cheese and some dairy cows. These worked out well, with this being the favourite! Not saying whether the cow liked the cheese or not! :-)


Here are a few more tasters from fairly recent shoots with Natalie, all part of an exciting project for 2008. I'm saving the best images for later in the year, but these will give people an idea of what I've been doing. We are really working well together as a team at the moment and I think it shows in the images.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Sunday Times Style

Delighted to see my work featured in today's Sunday Times Style Magazine in their Trash The Dress feature. Delighted to see one of Ami Simpson /Dundas on it as that was 2 years ago, before the Trash The Dress phenomenon had even started. I am quite proud that I was headed in that direction so long ago. Who said we don't set trends up here in Caithness!!

Trash the Dress is a great idea, although I feel it's badly named. A lot of brides are put off by the title, as the dress doesn't actually get trashed (unless you want it to!!). I call mine a 'Post Wedding Fashion Shoot', and these are great fun. One of my favourite photographers, John Michael Cooper was the guy who started the whole thing off in the US and his work is awesome. I've done a fair number of these now, and actually have a few weddings booked further South this year purely on brides seeing the TTD images and wanting to do the same.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Yekaterina & Iain 26th April

Travelled to Monymusk in Aberdeenshire for this one. I have to say this was one of my favourite weddings ever. It was a great day, gorgeous venue, great couple, especially Katia who was really into the whole photography thing!! I really enjoyed the whole day.
Wedding was at Monymusk Church, and I thought Monymusk was really beautiful. Reception was at Craighaar Hotel, Bucksburn.

Vicky and Paul 19th April

Victoria Wardrop and Paul Whittock, both of Ardgay, were married at Dornoch Cathedral. The reception was at Carbisdale Castle. It was a great day - lots of fun, and they had a cool wedding car -an Aston Martin DB9! I love weddings at Dornoch Cathedral - always good to photograph there, and the minister Susan is great.

Copying my work

I came in for a bit of criticism amongst certain circles last week for commenting on a certain somebody copying my work. I think it's worth pointing out that I am not saying someone can't take pictures in the same locations as me. I am not 'slagging off the competition' as someone said. I am merely expressing my feelings after spending several years having to deal with this. So, on the subject of style and copying I'm going to say my bit again. I know there is no copyright on style, but this is not a case of me finding someone on the other side of the world who, by coincidence, has a similar way of working.

The point is right from day one when I started up here I set out to be different to the rest. As a result my work has become popular not only amongst customers, but also amongst other photographers. Now someone has seen this happening and rather than invest time and effort into doing their own thing and carving out their own style within the same small market, they have decided to do exactly what I do, much cheaper. To an untrained eye, the product does not look that different, only cheaper.Therefore this does directly affect my business, and there is a very good reason for feeling annoyed.

The point is every time I try to offer something different to the area, it is not different for very long. I also realise that this happens in other businesses, but in this case it's my personal artistic style which is being abused, by someone who cant be bothered putting the work in themselves. It would be nice to see other photographers in the area being imaginitive and forward thinking, and most of them are and most of them are also good friends of mine. It's just a bit of a shame that one person is short of imagination, and that all they can offer is an imitation of someone elses work. They are of course cheating themselves as well, by not attempting to have their own style, which to me is one of the most important aspects of being a photographer. We are all influenced by other people in life, but I have never wanted to be the same as the guy next door. Surely that shows your own shortcomings more than anything. I would think that developing your own style would actually make you a better photographer than copying someone else anyway.

Until you are in a job or career where your imagination and art is being badly imitated, and as a result business being stolen, I feel it's a bit unfair of a few people (and I know who they are and what their motives are) to say that I have no right to be angry and that I should 'accept' this and get on with it. I'll wait for the usual suspects to start having a go, but I'd like the rest of the people who read this to have an idea of my feelings on this subject, as most of them do understand what is going on.

Also worth pointing out that I am regularly sharing my ideas, thoughts and skills with hundreds of other photographers, both locally, nationally and internationally, through the SWPP and also personal contacts. I also have many people who I mentor in one way or another again locally and nationally. If I was the kind of person who didn't like others getting on I wouldn't do that. I attend the local camera club and give them talks at least once a year, and regularly pass things on to other local photographers. Difference is I know these people will take away what I say and add some ideas to their own style. I'd be bitterly disappointed if I saw any of them entering a copy of one of my images in a print competition, but would be proud and flattered if I saw a huge improvement in their own style of work, and that being entered.

I am always around to help other photographers, and get a hell of a lot of enjoyment from it. It's just a shame people outside photography cannot see how frustrating it is to keep coming up with great new ideas only to see it somewhere else 2 weeks later. I'd appreciate if anyone wants to comment this time, that they are good enough to leave contact details so I can answer their questions etc.

Friday, May 09, 2008


A few people have asked to see some images from Paris, so here's a few of the place. I was only there a couple of days, and it rained a fair bit, but I still managed a few shots. I'll post some of the fashion shots later on as they are for a magazine and I'd rather wait until published.

First visit to Paris and I have to say it's once of the best places I've been to. Amazing city. Lovely, friendly people and it was a real buzz seeing some of the more famous landmarks. When I arrived my first real glimpse of the city was driving up The Champs Elysees towards the Arc De Triomphe and it just felt amazing. All that was missing for me was seeing Lance Armstrong riding up there in the yellow jersey of the Tour De France.

2008 SWPP Gold Awards

Thought I'd update on my Gold awards so far this year. Been very pleased to get twelve so far this year, despite some pretty tough and sometimes contraversial judging.

Bridal Portrait

Contemporary Portrait
Environmental Portrait

Contemporary Wedding

Contemporary Portrait


Environmental Portrait


Contemporary Portrait

Sunday, May 04, 2008

New Portrait Competition

About to launch a new portrait competition, with huge prizes. Look out for local press for details :-)