Friday, 14 December 2012

Reasons Not To Be A Prick

So, usually I write blog posts with slightly nicer undertones, but all of which hopefully have some kind of helpful message.

Today is going to be no different, but this time I am going to write something I don't really like writing.

When I was about 15, I learned a very important lesson. I was a total bitch. I was mean about people behind their backs, I was selfish and not particularly kind. I was friendly to people who were friendly to me, and not as easily swayed to break friendships with people out of loyalty as others, but still, I was not Nice. Certainly not good enough, and yet I still felt like I was a "good person". I still felt like it was unfair when bad things happened to me.

Shit Happens

Then, when I was ostracised by a group of girls in the summer before my final year, I decided that enough was enough. I felt SO upset, SO alone and sad, that I decided things had to change. I decided that in my final year, no one was going to have any reason to be mean to me, because I was gonna become the nicest person ever. If I wasn't ever nasty about people (even if they were nasty towards me), then at least I knew in my heart that they must be wrong about me. I started to only think bad things, with the aim of one day not even thinking them. When I walked down the street, instead of thinking how horrible someone's outfit was, I tried to think about the things I liked about it - the colours, the way they had tried to pick out something to flatter them. I alienated myself from most of the groups - instead upholding friendly acquaintances and just trying to be nice in passing to people. I spent lunchtimes in the libraries and art room, looking up photography and starting out what would become my passion and my career.

I Will Not Sink

After I left school and went onto 6th form, my attitude got better and better, life seemed nicer and nicer. I didn't really belong to a group of friends in particular in 6th form, but was nice enough to everyone and got on well enough with everyone, without having the loyalties of a particular group to maintain.

Life seemed magical. I was so happy. I felt so good, I felt like I had figured something out that was SO precious. I would never need other things to make me happy - just love for people as a whole and love for life. People were nice to me in return. Strangers would stop me in a crowd and ask me for directions, which made me feel approachable. I got genuine compliments about my personality, and for the first time I didn't feel smug and like it was owed to me and "someone had realised" - I felt like I had seen something lovely in someone else, and that made me happy. To this day, when someone compliments me on something, I always think "they may or may not be right, but they are definitely a lovely person" or something along those lines. 

What you say about others says more about you than it does about them.

So, that leads me to today. Reasons Not To Be A Prick.

See, writing this makes me a prick. Because calling someone a bitch only makes you a bitch. So whilst I am a bit hypocritical in writing this, I wanted to be able to maybe set off a few lightbulbs in those who maybe aren't as nice as they could be or want to be, or maybe just comfort others who have already realised this.

Here We Go.

1) Don't call other people prick's, because it makes you the prick. 
I like to think that because this isn't a direct insult to anyone in particular, that makes me slightly less of a prick.

2) People can automatically question how your parents raised you. Sure - it's your responsibility to how you turn out. But if you love your parents and you want to make them proud - don't be a prick. Imagine when you have kids - do you want them to be calling people names, bullying people, being nasty and unfair? No! So don't be like that yourself.

3) It will only make you unhappy in the long run. There's a quote somewhere which sums this up really well. Something along the lines of "we dislike in others what we dislike in ourselves". The more good you see in people, the less you have to worry about yourself. What often picks me up after I've had a bad experience is knowing I didn't have bad intentions, and that I tried my hardest to get a good outcome. Sometimes it just doesn't work out, but if you apologise and mean it, there's not much else you can do.

4) There are no good outcomes. People like to think that if they call someone out for violating some moral code (Real Housewives is the perfect example of this), then someone will have an epiphany of their wrongdoings, come begging for their forgiveness and become a better person, almost as good as you. WRONG WRONG WRONG. Usually, this is what happens. You call someone out, they dislike you more, or they do something extreme and kill themselves etc, they go about with an even more disfigured trust in the human race and so do you. A la Real Housewives. All those women are SO wrapped up in being good people, and doing what is right according to themselves, that they forget that we all have different experiences and different opinions of what is right and wrong. You can't hold it against people - unless it's something universally wrong, like murder, theft, violence, racism etc. Most people start out with good intentions. If someone upsets you, all you can do is be nice about it - sit them down, explain you understand they probably had no idea on how it would make you feel and now they know for next time. They'll probably be grateful you were so nice, faith in humanity is restored and THEN they may become a better person for it!

5) You will never be able to lead a happy, fulfilled life. Extreme, I know. But think about it. If you live your life with a horrible realism that people are assholes, life is unfair and that you don't deserve any of this - then you will feel at times like your partner is one of those assholes. It holds you back from loving someone unconditionally - and I'm sure those of you who have been with partners for 30+ odd years can agree that sometimes it's unconditional love which bridges the gaps where sometimes other people can fall in. 
THE BEST BET you can EVER make is this:

If you live your life to the best of your ability - you give as much as you can, you are as nice, loving and kind as you can be. You always head out with good intentions, when people anger you - you forgive. You keep forgiving. You look on the bright side. You get up, and try again. If you can look back and think - well, I've done bloody well and really, really tried. Even though it was fucking hard. Then you can know that the bad shit isn't because you deserve it, and maybe the bad shit will teach you something and make you stronger and better. Not being a prick is the best thing you can do in life.


Thursday, 29 November 2012

Things I Have Learned

Woah, jeez, I just logged on here and saw it's been 4 MONTHS since I updated on here.

This is pretty terrible!

I think lately it's been dawning on me that I have been pretty slack on certain areas of my life, and overdosing on other parts. I've learned to loooove running a photography business again - hosting the wedding workshops, introducing the editing dvd, doing 1-1 sessions with people and shooting musicians and weddings has been awesome this year! I really wanted to "knock every shoot out of the park" - at least, that was what I wrote down as my aim last year, when I was listing my life away :)

But on the other hand, where in some ways I feel successful - I've done well for my bank account this year, saved up and made money (which technically is great, and I should be proud) I have neglected other areas which kind of make the clog turn.

Like this blog.

I've been so consumed with emails about my business, I have neglected the lovely ones from people just stopping by to say "hi". I went through them the other day, replied to about 20 of these, and I got so many nice, understanding replies back from people saying "Aw, I'm just glad you replied!" that it made my heart a little sad. 

It's great to feel like you're being successful from a financial point of view, but what I have learned recently, is that if I neglect the non-finanicial aspects of running a business - being a friend to people, being helpful, being grateful and nice; then the fun work starts to slowly fade out, and you're left being offered to shoot still life photographs of books for a leaflet. Eep.

So, I have decided to become a rambler.

And I will try not to promote this blog in anyone's face, as I have also learned that treating people like spambots doesn't do you any favours, either! But I will quietly ramble to myself about general day to day musings - and put in some pictures too, for those who like ze visuals!

I will try not to promote any products or services I may provide, unless I have had an experience which I think makes for a good learning lesson that is useful to share. Because after all, who wants to hear about that stuff all the time? That's what twitter is for :) ;)

So this shall be my ramble blog, for my general day to day updates on what I've learned, what I'm learning. I've refrained from being so open in the past about my personal life, because I know that the people who are involved in my personal life don't necessarily want their lives blogged about, too.

That said, this is my life - and I am a sharer. So I will try and do it as fairly as possible :) 

I'm actually pretty excited about this. Wellies on, it's time for a ramble.

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Lavender Wedding Workshop!

Lavender Wedding Workshop!

I had an amazing time on Wednesday down near London hosting my Lavender Wedding Workshop!

The wedding workshops are designed to give participating photographers, amateur or pro, a chance to broaden their portfolio into the wedding industry with a little edge, or just spruce up their portfolio with some stunning new shots!

As a wedding photographer myself, sometimes in real mile-a-minute weddings you just don't get the chance to sit and think properly about poses, locations, lighting and have the chance to properly create something that really stands out in your portfolio. When I do weddings, I plan a few "standout" portraits in advance, and the rest is left to my brain on the day! So these workshops have been great for me as well as everyone else who has come so far - not only do I get a chance to get some kickass wedding pictures, but I get to make a mental storage of poses, locations etc that work well for portraits!

Also, I don't know about you lucky Americans, but people in England generally don't have lovely outdoor wedding receptions - probably due to the fact that it absolutely pours it down 95% of the time!! For some odd reason every workshop I've planned so far has landed on a miraculously warm, sunny day, so it's been great getting pictures of a set-up table that people can also put in their portfolios.

Here are my pictures from the day! It was absolutely brilliant, every person who came was warm and friendly, we had so much good banter and Emma & James (our "bride" and "groom") were superstars - spending the whole day kissing and cuddling, you'd have thought they were made for the job ;)

 Make-up was done by Tabby Casto - who went through an epic journey to get to the workout and STILL brought so much energy and fun to the day!! Tabby is amazing!

 We hijacked some of the picnic benches, and set up this table! Some young schoolgirls found it while we were shooting in an opposite field and I think it made their day! They kept running up to us asking if they'd just got married! Aww!

Thankyou SO MUCH to everyone who came - I left that day exhausted but so HAPPY and feeling like I had made 20 new friends! Hopefully I will see everyone again for more madness or just drinks and cinema mmm! I will put all behind the scenes on the facebook page! :D

Yay! xx

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Losing Myself and The Last Two (and a half) Years

It's crazy to think that it was just under three years ago that I was nearing the end of my 365 days. When I first started shooting properly, when I fell in love with creating pictures, I was 17. I look back on those days, and I wasn't just in love with photography - I was in love with the world. I think I was the happiest I've ever been - totally naive and very aware of it, enjoying the sunshine, the snow, the rain, the wind. It was a period of self-discovery where I felt like I was in control of creating myself - and very simply, I was going to be AWESOME.

20/365 - You know it's summer when builders get their tops off and hairy chests out!

Things got a bit messy a long the way - life kicked in. I lost my identity during a relationship which was bad for me, and became someone I disliked. It took me a long long time to become okay with my dreams crumbling for the first time. I had to take a deep breath and let it go, and even that breath took months of preparation.


Finding my feet again, with just myself to find them, seemed impossible at first - but within months of being home, being young and having nothing to do but smile, I was pretty sorted. I was in another great place in my head, as happy as before - just slightly less naive and very wary that that could be quite dangerous.

Spines to rest your spine

Stress really kicked in when I moved into my first flat in 2011 - all of a sudden, I had responsibilities! I'd only had a few months practice of earning money, a few awesome things had happened and I figured "hey - I can bank on this happening every month, I'll be fiiiine" not quite realizing the ginormity of the mountain I had taken on.

Blindsided On An Idle Tuesday
Being a newly turned 20 year old and renting quite a plush flat in the city centre, purely from your own money from your own business is quite a cool achievement. I got a bit of a rush from that. But I found myself constantly plauged by financial worries, with the stresses of a 30 year old on my head. I didn't plan ahead, got myself right down to an empty bank account every month, and had quite a few little breakdowns. I was so focused on client work that I had no choice but to completely ignore my personal work - only squeezing in flickr uploads max once a month, and generally feeling confused about my style, my passion and questioning whether I'd made a stupid choice trying to be this awesome person with this awesome life.
Shit Happens

The more I started to get into personal shooting again, and the more active I became online, the more negativity cropped up - criticism of myself, my life, my morals and my past were all common occurrences of my web inbox. It was a lot to handle, so I decided to withdraw myself. I tweeted once a day, blogged occasionally about client work, and tried to keep myself to myself. Inside my head I became very much "on the fence" in terror of upsetting someone, being someone worthy of hating and questioning. Instead, I threw myself into what made me happy - my boyfriend, earning money and shooting weddings.

the superhero in me is tired

Towards the end of last year, I managed to build up a small sum of savings to ease the financial stress. I spent less on personal things, more on business. I thank god I don't have to buy anymore kit! But as I was finally getting the business balance right, though I'd lost so much passion for what I was doing. I'd become a muted version of my 17year old self, too tired to let go and enjoy myself because I was consumed by being a grown up.
drizzle, not a hurricane

This took it's toll on my relationship, my expectations were sky high and I was needy and the majority of my happiness got loaded onto my poor boyfriend. Things came to a head a few months ago, we took a month apart to decide whether we were right for each other and whether we could give each other what we needed.
The Journey Home

In that month apart, I completed what I will call Phase 1 of "Aha! There you are!". I was forced into doing my work, enjoying it. I rediscovered old friends and made new ones who are irreplaceable to me. I took pride in being independent again, I enjoyed it! 

Phase 2 was learning how to balance the relationship with this new independence once the month was up, and make sure I was doing it all for the right reasons - not to avoid being on my own, but because it made me happier.

Phase 3 seems to have made me come full circle to 17year old me. I've let go of all my bitterness - people are just people, I am just me. I still want to be AWESOME. But in order to do that, I have to let go of the struggle and let it embrace me on it's own, as hippy-ish as that sounds. 

I'm enjoying my client work - making it my personal work. I'm starting to do personal shoots once a week, just for my mind to empty out the bad thoughts like I used to. My relationship is flourishing because I no longer have unrealistic expectations for it to provide all my happiness needs - and I feel like I'm back, and ready to swing into action and begin an amazing career, a life to be proud of, to eventually be a mother somewhere near as good as my mother, and to truly truly love someone and to radiate that love every single day.

oh, it was all yellow

 My therapist said to me: "Why is it so important to you that you do so well in life? That you score 10/10 on every life box?"

Well, I still don't know that. But all I know is that instead of sitting by my computer, listening to music which makes me imagine things and moments that don't exist yet, dreaming of all the amazing memories I am going to have - I am going to get out there and make them happen. It is just me in this world, I will always be on my own inside my mind. But I will share it, and share it with as many people who want to know - if it puts a smile on their face or helps them realize something they forgot, then I've done something good. Something AWESOME.

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Wedding Workshops!

So... last week I held my very first Wedding Workshop!

Needless to say, I was terrified! Wedding photography is such a tricky thing to teach to anyone, because so much of it is personal taste, so much of it is out of your control (light, venue, people, clothes, reactions & emotions) - pretty much the only thing a photographer gets to decide is their composition, which lens they whack on the end of their camera and how much attention they are willing to pay to their surroundings ;)

So, with that in mind, I tried to put together a workshop which would help photographers (both new and familiar to the wedding industry) get to grips with some of the techniques and thought-processes I go through when I shoot my weddings, and let them get some pretty snazzy portfolio pictures along the way :P

SO! What on earth goes into a wedding workshop!? First off, I booked a bride and a groom - Camilla and Ben.

Camilla is a professional model, whereas Ben is a plumber. I really wanted everyone who came along to get to grips with shooting with people who were "real" people (so to speak) - the majority of couples who hire you for their wedding have little t no experience in-front of a camera, so it seemed a bit off if I were to book pro models. This way everyone got to practice posing and talking to the couple in a way which naturally generates lovely moments for pictures!

I "propped up" quite a lot for this workshop. Expenses (on top of bridal attire and groom's outfit) included a door, a bicycle, a wedding arch, a ton of artifical blossom and other flowers, a blow up mattress to set sail, a "happy easter" sign turned into a "just married" sign, some white acrylic paint and a Jurrassic park painting kit which provided me with the worlds smallest paintbrush, picture frames, "Love" and "Mr &Mrs" lettering, a dalmation dog, a bouquet, as well as a whole ton of petrol to transport all this stuff to and from the location :P

One of the things I really wanted people to get from this workshop is a portfolio building experience. Not only did everyone come away telling me they felt loads more confident and excited about shooting their up-coming weddings (many of them would be their first), but also that they now felt like they were "bookable" because they now had images of a bride and groom - which is probably one of the most difficult things a photographer can get when transitioning to weddings, (unless you're lucky enough to be a guest granted with camera control) as - how do you book a wedding without any experience whatsoever?

Below are some of my wonderful workshopee's pictures from the day and links to their sites! I am so blown away with what people have come away with, impressed and CHUFFED that everyone had such a good time!!! :D

The next Wedding Workshop will be held on 2nd-3rd May 2012, and you can receive an info pack by emailing me at
To see what is booked and the moodboard for the next wedding workshop, head on over to click here!

and to have your say on where future workshops are held and for general updates:

Sending a massive thankyou to the 20 photographers who came along to my first wedding workshop, I'm so glad I met you all and hopefully see some of your faces on future workshops, or just round for dinner ;)

Rosie xx

Photos from all the workshopee's on the day :D

Nina Pang:
Sam Gbasai:

Kate Wheeler:

Claire Basiuk

Simon Healey

Stephanie Humphries:

Stephanie Sellers:

Jayne Strathdee:

Mark Nuttall:

Eleni Caulcott:

Stacey Portelly

Leah Holding:

"I have been shooting weddings for two years now and I can honestly say that I learned more in the few hours with Rosie on this workshop.
Everything was covered, EVERYTHING. From props to posing and final editing. I couldn't be happier with how my images turned out and the knowledge I learnt to continue throughout my next weddings. The entire day was relaxed and full of fun and if all this wasn't enough, I met the best group of people who's images are equally amazing :) I now feel 100% more confident in directing the couple, shooting the images and editing. I cant thank Rosie enough, but to tell her how much she helped me and to prove it with the images :)"

Amy Showler

Laura Debourde:

"Ok, so where do I even start?! Words can't even describe how fun and mindblowingly awesome Rosie's wedding workshop was! If you want to build up your wedding portfolio, DO IT. If you want to learn more about photographing weddings, get fantastic tips on how to shoot your couple and how to make your photographs stand out then I highly recommend! Being my second workshop I've attended of Rosie's, I didn't think it was possible to be astonished by her upbeat enthusiasm and encouragement, but I was! She is absolutely lovely to work with, and puts herself out completely for other people who are working in Photography. The props that Rosie took time to collect, buy and decorate were absolutely stunning, as well as all the little details such as finding us beautiful models to work with, Ben and Camilla were just little factors that made the day perfect. Not only did I get some awesome photographs, I met some amazing people and it was great to be around Photographer's to share stories and swap tips with each other. Everyone was so lovely! Since the workshop, I have already got my first paid wedding booked, and really, it's down to Rosie for helping me to build up my portfolio beautifully. So thank you so much. Anyone who is contemplating going to one of the workshops, just do it, Rosie is such an inspiration and you will not regret it one bit! xxx"

Andy Wilkinson:

Stephanie Mabon:

Well done everyone :D So happy and hope you all had an awesome day!!!