Thursday, 19 January 2017

Advice: What to do with your Digital Files - Backup!

Whether you have taken lots of photographs of your little one on your phone, or purchased the digital files from your Professional Photographer the one thing you need to remember to do is back these files up. 

When I was at school we used to save everything onto floppy disc (careful! I'm only 32!) which obviously became obsolete with the introduction of CD's and USB's. But CD's can get scratched (and lost) and USB's can get hidden in a drawer never to be found again.



So, apart from printing your beautiful photographs you've purchased instead of them just sitting in a drawer on your USB, make sure your images are backed up elsewhere. You don't want to be moving house in 3 years time and accidentally throwing away your USB cos you forgot what is on it - or its lost in the house move. Because unless you printed them those images are now gone, and most photographers purge their systems after 12 months so you cannot rely on your photographer still having your images either.

So where can you back up:
You can save images to Google Drive, iCloud, Dropbox and even Amazon Prime has online cloud storage.

You can save images to your computer or external hard-drive - but remember if either of these fail (as things can) then you've possibly lost the images too.
Cloud storage is probably one of the most popular methods of storage now - and whilst some things are free, and some things are paid for, never put all your images just in one place.


Same really goes for phone images. I see so many people devastated when their child has sent their phone swimming, or its had to be reset or its been lost or stolen and people only want their images of their kids back. Whilst uploading them to Facebook is one option, not everyone wants to keep all their photos on it.

So again you can use the above suggested items or even set up an email account, for example bobbysphotos@gmail.com and email them once a week to that email address go in and read the emails check they've sent properly and then they'll always be an attachment on that email!

What ways do you back up your files? Do you have a system in place? Would love to hear your tips and tricks!

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Engagement: Planning on Popping the Question?

It doesn't really matter when you are planning to propose who you are planning to propose to. Some of this information you'll want to follow - and some you'll want to completely ignore and that's fine. 



Have you talked about it?
It might sound really funny - but before you think about proposing, have you actually talked about getting married or spending the rest of your lives together? It's not a definite must, but it's something that could plan how things are going to pan out!

If you've not recently talked about it then look at other things. How long have you been together? Are things good? Are you living together? But most importantly if you feel deep down she's going to say yes - then ask her!

What did Dad say?
Have you asked her Dad? I know it tends to be seen as a bit old-fashioned, but a lot of people still like to think it's not about permission its courtesy. Some women will love the fact that you went to her dad to ask.

Of course if sometimes Dad's aren't in the picture then look at asking mum instead. 


Tell the parents your intentions before buying a ring - just in case it goes drastically wrong!

The Ring
As a woman, we all like to be surprised, and by now you probably have an idea of what type of thing that she is into. There are so many things to think of when choosing a ring, it's not just a case of going in and going "oo this one will do". If need be, ask people who know her the best for feedback. Ask her mum, her best friend or her sister. And if need be, take them with you when buying.

Ready to go shopping?
Jewellers will baffle you with science, and mention the Four C's quite a lot: Colour, Carat, Clarity and Cut.
The Different Cuts of  Diamonds available

Cut is generally one of the most important parts of choosing the diamond - with colour being the next. A big diamond with a poor colour, will cost less than a smaller diamond with a very good grade of colour.


How much should it cost?
Really - it should cost what you can afford, or what you are willing to pay.  You might think that she might want some really big fancy flashy diamond. But she might not either, and she might not want you to get into lots of debts.

A lot of people say it should cost one month's salary, some say two, some even say three. But in general - it's what you can really afford. And if it's something that you are planning in advance you have time to save to get the best you can - without getting into debt. If you leave ring shopping to the last minute - you might have to take out finance or settle for something just because of what your bank balance says.

Where will you say "Will You"?
Are you planning on making a big fuss with the proposal? It doesn't have to be something completely out of the realms of reality. It could be your favourite restaurant - you don't need to book somewhere fancy. It could be where you first met. Or somewhere that has some significance to you both. Are you going to make it a super private affair, or have some friends waiting in the wings to celebrate with you? Just be yourself and don't over think it!



On one Knee?
If you are planning on proposing somewhere like a restaurant, then sometimes there would be a possibility that you may not think about going down on one knee. However, chances are most women have thought about being proposed to since being a child and how things are going to plan out and going down on one knee is one of those. However, bad joints? Bad back then I'm sure she'll forgive you after all you've probably just said lots of gushingly lovely things to her about how you want to spend the rest of your life together.


Good Luck!! 

Saturday, 7 January 2017

Things To Do: 100 Things To Do With the Kids in Yorkshire and Surrounding Areas!

I know it can be hard to think of new places to go with the kids and especially if you've got children of different ages.

So I have come up with, with the help of asking on social media, 100 places to visit with the kids. MOST of the places are in Yorkshire but some are further afield. I can tell you that this list is not exhaustive there is plenty more out there too!


Enjoy!




Barnsley

Leeds

Huddersfield & Halifax
York & North Yorkshire
Derbyshire & The Peak District
Nottinghamshire
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Others


Please click on the links to find out more including opening times, prices and travel directions. And I hope you enjoy making lots of magical memories with your little ones.



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Friday, 30 December 2016

Newborns: 2016 A Year of Squishy Babies

Every child is a different kind of flower, and all together make this world a beautiful garden. (unknown)


2016 has seen lots of wonderful new babies at Blue Lights Photography. I truly do love my job and that so many people allow me to snuggle their babies and create the lasting memories of them being so super tiny.



2016 has seen me photograph 49 beautiful babies. 22 Girls, and 27 Boys.


I have photographed 19 Girl Sessions on their own and 26 Boy Sessions. I had one set of Twin Girls, and one Boy-Girl Twins.


The most popular girls name has been Ella, where I've had 3 baby girls called this - but as for baby boys, the top 3 popular names had 2 of each and these were Elliott, George and Noah.


The most popular busy months were March & September. I would advise if you are expecting a baby in one of these months to book in before your baby arrives. 


You can make a solid booking for your newborn session from your 20 Week Scan. We take provisional bookings from your 12-Week Scan and we book you in via your due date - and then when baby arrives we get a confirmed session date in your diary

To find out more then you can head over to the website - or visit our facebook page.

Tuesday, 27 December 2016

Wedding: Our 2016 Wedding Roundup

Well, what a year 2016 has been for Weddings!

I have photographed 17 Weddings along the following:
3 Church Ceremonies
1 Outdoor Ceremony
13 Civil Ceremonies

I have photographed at SIX new venues to Blue Lights Photography this year and 7 Weddings have been at Waterton Park Hotel.

My Wedding Season started in March at Whitley Hall, and ended in December at Waterton Park Hotel!


I really do love my job. As I photograph a MAXIMUM of 20 Weddings per year and a maximum of 4 Weddings per month this means that the people who book me get the best of me whilst the studio doesn't suffer either.


And whilst we entered The Wedding Industry Awards and we were not a finalist. The comments we received were amazing.


“Adele went above and beyond during the whole wedding planning process helping me in other aspects of the wedding as well as making sure she knew EXACTLY what I wanted from a photographer. I could not be more happy with my photos and I would recommended her to anyone getting married” 
Mrs Amy Holmes


“Adele has been amazing since meeting her at a wedding fair. Not one request we have made has been too much and we never made to feel like hard work. Little hints for tissues and bustling abilities were added extra touches from such an amazing person. All this before I mention the quality and beauty of our wedding pictures. They are stunning and have captured the relaxed pre-shoot, romantic wedding and emotional blessing perfectly!” 
Mrs Hayley Frank (Norrish)


This year I have photographed at Whitley Hall, Sitwell Arms, Manor Golf Club, Holiday Inn Brooklands, Wentworth Castle, Waterton Park, Hazelwood Castle, The Old Deanery, Fishlake Mills, Spiced Pear, Keepmoat Stadium.


And whilst most florals have had pink tones to them - there has been no major stand our trend of colour for Bridesmaid Dresses.


“Me & my husband couldn't have asked for anything better for our wedding photography. Adele gave us everything we asked for & more. She was fantastic with everything from the moment we booked her right through to the end. She was fantastic with the children who really weren't sure and helped out with anything possible throughout our special day, even things that weren't photography related. She really went above and beyond for us and we are truly grateful. Amazing quality & great value for money” 
Mrs Shani Turner 

I want to thank my couples for being so wonderful and allowing me to share their special days with them!


“Adele was absolutely fantastic and made the day extra special for us. She made us feel at ease and not uncomfortable. She was so easy going and still some of my guests are commenting how fantastic she was. She also helped with other aspects of the wedding day such as getting my dress on me!!! She was not just a photographer. She was just simply amazing. The photo's put on the slideshow at the evening do were amazing and I cant wait to see the final thing!!! Can't praise her enough.” 
Mrs Emily Grayson


“Adele was great from start to finish on the day, arrive before the agreed time got all the photo's done as requested. Had a pre-wedding shoot and meeting to arrange all the photo's we wanted. Entertained all the bridesmaids and page boys on the day, FANTASTIC, BRILLIANT would definitely recommend” 
Mrs Vicki Johnson


“I was unfortunate to book a photographer that went into receivership 6 months before our wedding, this was after a long spell of poor communication and many sleepless nights. I then met Adele who really seemed to care, took the time to understand exactly what we wanted, communicated quickly & effectively and made us both feel completely at ease. Adele was amazing in the lead up & on the day ensuring that the photography (and the day!) kept flowing. The photos we have seen are stunning. So happy!” 
Mrs Samantha Kelly


“I have never been more pleased with the work of Blue Lights Photography. Her assistance on, before and after our wedding has been outstanding. The quality of her work still continues to amaze us both. This as added to our memories as it all goes so quick. Her friendly manner made us both at ease as this was a stressful time and she was able to adapt to this. We would both highly recommend Blue Lights Photography to anyone who asked.” 
Mrs Karen Maude 


“We started our shoots with a pre shoot on a very wet September day. It didn't phase Adele, she brought us some pretty umbrellas and took us to a picturesque location. Our photos were lovely! Adele was amazing on our wedding day, helped out with everything and anything as well As taking some of the most gorgeous photos. The little touches were what made all the difference to my new husband and I. We can't wait to see our full album after the previews we have had!!!” 
Mrs Alice Fleming



“Adele provided so much more than just photography services. The advice and guidance she gave us was invaluable both in terms of enabling us to plan our day but also ensuring that the day ran perfectly smoothly. Her approach and empathy to the brides nerves was an amazing and unexpected bonus.” 
Mrs Kate Ryan-Prewett


“Adele was literally my rock on my wedding day! After the Vicor completely forgot how to perform a wedding ceremony, Adele was there to save the day and tell us all what to do! She helped me get ready in the morning and fitted in just like one of the family. She went above and beyond and even stayed longer than she was supposed to when our first dance was running late. I couldn't recommend Adele at blue lights photography highly enough.” 
Mrs Alice Shaw 


Thank you for sharing your love stories with me!


Monday, 26 December 2016

Wedding: Making the Most of Visiting Wedding Fayres

Some Wedding Fayres are bigger than others but with the first big I Do Wedding Exhibition happening in Leeds on Sunday 5th Feb 10am to 4:30pm then here's how you can make the most out of the Wedding exhibitions that you do visit.



Have some idea of what you want for your Wedding
Having some type of vision you want for you Wedding will help narrow down your vision better. Do you want glitter and glam, or vintage chic. Do you want naturals and Hessian, or all sequins! 

Make a List
Whether you are on the beginning of your Wedding planning, or you are just going for the final bits. Make a list of what people you want to go and see before you actual go. Sometimes you can find a vendor list of all exhibitors online to make your job a little easier. I DO Leeds Exhibitor List is here: http://www.ido-weddingexhibitions.co.uk/leeds/who-will-be-there.php

Get organised
Now depending on the type of person and how organised you are on a general basis will depend on how organised you want to get for the Wedding Exhibitions but the best thing to do is make sure you are organised as it will make your job a lot easier Here are some ideas for you!
1. Set up a specific Wedding Email address to give out to vendors for competitions and information - but make sure you will check it!
2. Print sticky labels with your contact details on (get them on ebay pre-done for you!) things to include such as your name and partners name, date and venue if you have it, email address and phone number and even your address as some people prefer to contact via traditional post!
3. Bring your own tote bags, and secretly have a "Yes / Interested" and a "No" bag that way when you take details from everyone you'll have your own filing system and it'll make it easier to book appointments with the people you love.

Set a Budget
If you have a rough overall budget then set smaller budgets for your venue, photographer, cake, dress and details. This will make it easier for you when you are then looking at suppliers to see whether or not that fit into your budget. Love a supplier who's a little out of your budget. See if they have a special deal if you book on the day. Alternatively follow them on social media and their email list and you may find that they send out special offers or details of the next event they are at.

Take Notes
Take a notebook with you to take notes on any exhibitors who stand out to you. Whether it's something they said, a bit of advice they gave or prices you want to make a note of.

Offers & Leaflets
Try and pick up offers and leaflets of different suppliers. Enter the competitions as you never know if you may win! Not only that, keep hold of the leaflets of people you like (if there is more than one person) until you know you are definitely not going to use them. You ever know when something may go wrong and you need to find another supplier that you loved!


Wedding: Making the most out of visiting Wedding Venues


Engaged over the Festive period and now starting to look at what to do next. Here we talk about visiting Wedding Venues and how to make the most out of them!



A lot of Wedding Venues will have Open Days, or hold their own Wedding Fayre. So as we are attending the Waterton Park Open Day on the 19th February 12pm-4pm then I thought I would give you some information on getting the most out of visiting a potential Wedding Venue for the first time!

Budget
Just because a venue looks like it may be out of your budget, don't be afraid to ask. Some venues aren't as expensive as you think that they may be, especially as different venues include different things. The best thing you can do to get the right idea of a budget is to have a rough number of people you will be inviting.

Numbers
Does your venue allow for only a certain number of people? Do you want to invite 100 people but the venue you've fallen in love with only holds a maximum of 50 people? Would you cut down your number of guests for the right venue or would it mean you need to look elsewhere?

Access
Do you have any elderly or disabled guests that you will be inviting? Then don't forget to check out accessibility. How far is the walk from the carpark to the venue? Are their stairs, do they have a lift? Don't take for granted that venues will have lifts, especially older venues and stately homes.

Other Weddings
Check what is the maximum amount of Weddings that the venue holds per day. Some venues give you the option to pay for Exclusivity but do you really need it if there is no way you'll bump into the other bride?

Booking
Look at how far realistically you need to book in advance or their diaries are open for. Some venues will recommend booking a minimum of 18months-2 year in advance to get your desired date. However, if you are planning on getting married on a peak weekend date (bank holidays at Easter / August for example) then you may have to get married on a different date than originally planned if it's already booked.

Happy Planning!

Wedding on a Budget: Monsoon Adults Sale


The Monsoon Sale isn't just for Children there are some great finds for your Wedding for adults too!

Now if you are getting married on a budget or arent a big "wedding dress person" then look at this for you! Down from £399 to £199.50 and available in sizes 8-22!

They have a couple of other dresses available in limited sizes but this one is beautiful in a full range of sizes for an amazing price.




Only having one bridesmaid but want them to dazzle, then what about this beautiful Katy Dress. This is part of Monsoon's Limited Editing collection and is currently £149.50 down from £299. Available in sizes 8 & 10 it won't be around for long!

This Adrianna Maxi dress is £44.50 down from £89 and is a beautiful purple shade (some would say its more burgandy or eggplant but online it says purple!) Available in sizes 8-16 it will suit many of your bridesmaids for an amazing price.




The Harmony Dress is a floor-length occasionan dress with a lace illusion neckline. Available in sizes 8-12 for £69.50 from £139 and only available in this colour at this price.

Juniper is a beautiful one shoulder dress in floral lace and available in sizes 8-14. Currently £69 down from £139 and only available in this colour at this price.


Having a Christmas-time Wedding and thinking of putting your bridesmaids in red? This beautiful floor-length Rose gown is just for you. At an absolute bargain at £49 it won't be around long! Available in sizes 8-18! Grab it whilst it lasts!

Happy Shopping!

Sunday, 25 December 2016

Wedding on a Budget: Monsoon Children's Sale


I will admit that I am a self-confessed bargain hunter. I love quality products and whilst I don't mind paying quality prices, I love a bargain - especially when it comes to sale time!


Monsoon definitely haven't been tight with us this year, with up to 50% off in their sale. So if you are planning a Wedding in 2017 (or 2018) and are thinking about purchasing for the little bridesmaids then definitely look no further than some of the Monsoon Sale items!


I've looked for some items that will go with the most popular colour schemes, or more neutral so will go with anything - and I am sure you will think there are some great finds to be had. But don't wait too long! Things will sell out quick!

The Dresses

Monsoon always have pretty dresses, so there is no surprise that we manage to have some of these pretty ones in the sale. Whilst there is a larger selection on the website the ones that I have chosen have the current widest range of availability and size range according to the website.



The first dress up is the Twinkle Tara dress from £42.00 down from around £60 (depending on sizes) and is currently available in ages 3-11yrs. Classed as gold you would also get away with a copper or rose gold theme by looking at the images however, this would depend on how it looks in person. 

The second dress is called the Therese lace dress and is currently from only £24 down from £48. This 3/4 sleeve lace dress would be perfect for a lace winter wedding for little bridesmaids and is currently available in ages 3-11yrs.



This beautiful Rosia sparkle cascade dress is only available in sizes 7-10YRS at the moment but at £27.50 down from £55 this would go with many colour schemes and look beautiful. Who doesn't love a bit of sparkle!


The Ashlynne dress from Monsoon is classed as Gold with a vintage style twist that comes with a navy sash, however, this is removable and could be given any other colour. Now £27.50 down from £55 and available in sizes 3-10YRS.


The Accessories

We don't just need dresses - we need accessories too! So here we have a couple to show you an idea of what is out there and how you can use them!


If you are getting married in one of the colder months, searching for shrugs for the children can be an expensive turn of events! However, in the Monsoon sale we have the Aida Cape at £22 available in 3-13YRS and the Ayla Cape at £19.50 available in 3-13YRS also. They are sold in 3-year blocks (example 3-6YRS) so lets keep the kiddies warm at a Winter Wedding!

Shoe Shopping can be a nightmare, different colours, flats, wanting matching for different ages! So Stressful.
The first ones have sparkle stone heels and are available in sizes 1-6 for £13.50, or the vintage style ones are £12.50 and available in a variety of sizes from 1-13!



And lastly, we have hair accessories. I know people tend not to want to purchase expensive for children, especially when they'll get taken out - possibly not worn at all, thrown to one side later on in the day you definitely don't want to be spending a lot of money on them. This double diamante Alice Band is £5 and this Lace Rosette Band is an absolute bargain at £2.50!

Happy Shopping guys!

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