Well 2020 what a year its been... Theres been highs and lows for all of us but 2020 has given me some incredible memories and moments and I would love to share a few with you!
At the start of the year I headed off on a magical trip to Kenya with my dad. I have always wanted to go on safari in the Maasai Mara and It did not disappoint. We stayed at the beautiful Ol Seki Mara. The staff were so so lovely and were incredibly knowledgeable about the land and its animals and gave us such a personal experience. Africa holds a special place in my heart and I hope to go back in 2021, lets keep our fingers crossed that traveling will seam a bit more normal next year.
For more wildlife images head to my wildlife photography page @megsdonati
Zanzibar & Nairobi
Following on from kenya we hopped on a small plane to Zanzibar for some sun and sea! I have never seen water so blue in my life and the heat was like being kissed by the sun! I highly recommend going away while its freezing in the U.K, Its just what my chilly bones needed!
After enjoying some down time on the beach we headed back to Kenya for a short break in Nairobi where I was so excited to visit the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust as I have been supporting them for the last few years. They do truly inspiring work with wildlife and rehabilitating orphan elephants back into the wild. I didn't leave there with dry eyes that's for sure.
We also went to Nairobi National park which was so beautiful and the Giraffe centre where I got a kiss from a giraffe! Possible one of my best moments of my life let alone this year!
After my travels I attended a photography workshop created by my friend Mindy Coe Photography and it was so much fun! We started off with Yoga which was so blissful as Mindy is also a yoga teacher and then we photographed the brilliant Poppy and Seb. It was pouring with rain this day but we weren't going to let that put us off. We headed outside to get some fun shots and when we went back inside we looked like drowned rats but we had the best time and got some epic shots!
Hair and Make up: @melissaoldridge
Models: @Lovell.10 @sebastian_mmst
Florist : @mad_lilies
Dress : @storyofmydressbridal
Workshop Day with: @mindycoephotography
First wedding of 2020
First wedding of the year! February 29th was my first wedding of 2020 and it was a great one! I was working with the fabulous Mindy Coe photography and together we captured Laura and Michel's very special day. They had the most amazing weather, a gorgeous family and a sweetie table! You can't beat a sweetie table at a wedding, even if the chocolate buttons did melt in the sun!
Then there was lockdown (the original 3 month stint)!
This was such a scary time as being self employed I had no idea what was going to happen as I potentially had 3 months with no work and no money coming in. I may have freaked out a tad!
Luckily the self employed government scheme was announced and things seamed a bit less scary. However the thought of doing nothing for three months filled me with dread. So I sat down and created a list of all of the things that I wanted to achieve during lockdown and got cracking!
Improving in Yoga was on this list but I would be lying if I said this was successful! I had seen a few fellow photographers from the uk had been taking photos of families on their doorsteps and I thought what a lovely idea and what a great thing to offer people in my community and if I can make even one person happy by doing this then I would be over the moon! It was so much fun and I met so many lovely neighbours.
You can read the full story behind my inspiration for door step photos here.
Outdoor newborn Shoots
During lockdown I was contacted by a lovely lady whose sister had just had a baby but was unable to have a newborn photography session due to lockdown restrictions. She heard about the doorstep photos and wondered if I would be able to take some for her sisters new family. Of course I said yes and I couldn't wait!
Instead of doorstep photos I had a think and found a way to create a safe outdoor mini newborn session. Millies session went so well I offered sessions to other local parents and families absolutely loved them! To read more about these sessions click here.
Once we were all "released back into civilisation" it was full steam ahead! With dates having to change for weddings and both couples and photographers having to be super flexible this meant I had the opportunity to shoot for some really amazing weddings for photographers who weren't able to photograph on their couples new wedding date.
I shot some beautiful Micro weddings this year and they were full of laughter, fun, joy and relief that they were finally getting married!
Here are some images from my favourite micro weddings this year. some of the images below I was shooting for @mindycoephotography, @katiefinnphotography and myself.
2020 has been a great year for couple, family and pet shoots. I personally think these are some of my favourite lifestyle shoots ever! In a year where we have spent both a lot of time with and without family its been great getting to know you and hear your 2020 tales.
Seeing people truely be themselves and getting to capture moments naturally and authentically without too much fluff is why I love what I do!
In a year that has been so detrimental for business I had the pleasure of photographing some amazing brand shoots for local businesses. This was really special as being able to capture someones brand message for them and showcase the face behind the business fills me with all kinds of happiness!
"Take me to the Lakes"
For all you Taylor Swift fans out there!
In 2019 I visited my friend Mindy who lives in the Lake District and I fell in love with the ruggedness that is the lakes! When you're there it feels magical, so peaceful and is a beautiful place to explore!
I couldn't wait to go bask and this year I got to visit twice. It was incredible. The first visit I went to do a brand shoot for Mindys wellness & lifestyle brand Mindy Pearl Coe and we went for a trip out in her converted camper van Rosie!
Im now seriously debating doing a van project myself in 2021... The second time I headed up with my dogs and stayed in the sweetest glampsite Howgills hideaway and explored Buttermere and we even took my two dogs and Mindy's collie out on a rowboat! 2 women and three dogs what could go wrong... Luckily nothing and it was the most incredible trip!
I can't wait to go again!
These are just a few of my stand out moments for 2020. This year has really taught me to really appreciate what I have and has forced me to slow down and "smell the roses" as they say. No one could have predicted the last 12 months and its definitely been tough year but ill cherish the moments 2020 has given me and I hope you have had some good come out of their year too. Sending love to all of you and here's to seeing what 2021 brings!