I’m always looking to adapt, improve and find new ways to further my business. If I’m not innovating then I would stagnate and that’s as bad as moving backwards as far as I’m concerned! This constant drive has led to the introduction of two new websites alongside my main social & commercial photography site (christaylorphoto.co.uk).
In 2014 I qualified as a commercial drone pilot with the CAA and launched Aerovisuals – offering aerial photography and video throughout Norfolk and the UK. It’s brought me some amazing commissions and experiences and I became the world’s first RNLI accredited drone operator. Taking off & landing a drone from the foredeck of a Tamar All-weather lifeboat when the boat is drifting with the tide & wind, pitching & rolling on the swell and the drone is wavering in the wind takes some nerve!
I’ve also become a BBC Approved Supplier for aerial video footage and had work featured on various BBC programs including The One Show, Saving Lives at Sea, The Politics Show and national & local BBC news. I’ve had work published in the Daily Telegraph, The Times & Mail Online and had video featured on Sky News, ITN national news and on Channel 5’s extreme weather programs twice.
The new angles and opportunities the drones offer has transformed what I can provide my clients, not only media/press jobs but so much more. Aerial photography has become invaluable for property photography – imagine you have a holiday home near the coast and can now have aerial photos/video on your website to show potential clients just how close you are without having to hire a real helicopter & pilot! At weddings I will often put the drone up for a few quick shots to provide that general view shot (GV), all important in storytelling as an opening shot to set the scene. I’ve done roof surveys for people within an hour, cutting out the time, expense & inconvenience of having scaffolding on their house, filmed hole-by-hole aerial fly-by’s at golf courses (always reminds me of the golf video games where you can fly over each hole before playing it!). The list goes on but I won’t bore you as this post was supposed to be about my newest site – Aquavisuals which I’ll come to next.
Aquavisuals is a new line in my business aimed specifically at the marine industry. It offers high-quality, professional photography & filmmaking to sailing organisations, boat manufacturers, coastal leisure companies and more. Basically any business connected to/using the sea.
I have always loved the water, being on it, in it, near it and I really enjoy any shoots I have on the coast, especially if they involve being on boats!
Combining my photography and the sea can only be a good thing for me and they always say ‘do what you know’ and ‘do what you love’. I sailed on Barton Broad at school in the summers, have a degree in marine biology, been RNLI lifeboat crew here at Sheringham since 2000, own two boats myself (plus two kayaks, does that make it four boats?!) and enjoy surfing, scuba diving, mackerel fishing and beachcombing so it was a bit of a no-brainer to take my business in a nautical direction.
Aquavisuals was launched a couple of weeks ago, and already 2018 has been a fruitful year with lots of projects in the pipeline. We went to the London Boat Show in early January & made some good contacts, I’ve been in conversation, through a mutual friend, with the official photographer of the Land Rover BAR America’s Cup racing team which has been invaluable. We have an apartment booked right by the yacht club for Cowes Week this year and plans are in place for a spot on the media boats which will awesome! I also have dates booked to photograph some local boat-building businesses and this Thursday I’m off to photograph and film a local rowing club who make their own boats.
For more information on my marine photography please visit my Aquavisuals site but fear not, this doesn’t mean I’m not going to be photographing weddings in the future, it’s just a side-line which I hope will bring me some swashbuckling new adventures on the high seas!
• Marine photographers UK • Yachting photographers • Boat photography • Yachting video • Yacht photography •
So yesterday I decided to have a little count up of the number of views my aerial videos have had across the various online & social media platforms and was amazed to find it came to over 9 million!
Most of my aerial work tends to be based around our beautiful North Norfolk coastline so when it comes to producing captivating imagery I have it pretty easy. Especially when some of my subjects last year included the Household Cavalry on Holkham beach, Cromer & Sheringham RNLI lifeboats and some good stormy weather. Also I was lucky enough to make films for the Lotus Driving Academy at the Lotus test track in Hethell and of the Wildcats Aerobatic Display Team while flying upside down over Southwold Pier!
It was an amazing year with my work being featured on the BBC Saving Lives at Sea series, Nadia’s British Food Adventure (again on the BBC), BBC News, ITN News, Sky News, Channel 4 and Channel 5’s Wildest Weather program.
Some of my favourite Norfolk aerial videos of last year were…
• Warnings of gales – a film showing the two sides of the Autumn weather at Sheringham & Cromer, featuring a soundtrack composed specially by talented local composer Reg Length
• Cromer and Sheringham Lifeboats on exercise – a fair few clips from this were used in the Saving Lives at Sea series
• The Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment annual ride-out on Holkham beach – this one alone had 2.4M view on the BBC News East FB page
• Storm Surge – the storm surge and resulting destruction at Cromer in January last year, footage of this was used on new channels all around the world (so I’m told!)
• Wildcat Aerobatics Team – this was a new one for me – flying the drone above two aeroplanes while they take off (with full permission from the pilots obviously!) plus getting to ride in the planes after for a flight with rolls & turns!
For more information about my aerial photography & video in Norfolk please have a look at my aerial imaging site – Aerovisuals. I have some very interesting plans & trips ahead in 2018 so watch this space for some serious nautical aerial goodness!
• Aerial photographers in Norfolk • Commercial drone operators in Norfolk • Drone video Norfolk • Drone photo Norfolk • Aerial video Norfolk •
Last week we were lucky enough to go to sunny Spain for work – I was commissioned to photograph some family portraits for a lovely couple whose wedding I photographed a couple of years back. I instantly got on really well with Fiona & Lee on their pre-wedding shoot at Cromer pier and their wedding a short while later at Chaucer Barn so I was really pleased to be asked to head over to their house in the mountains in Andalucia to do some family shots for them now that they had a new addition to their family – the gorgeous Amelia!
I’m always one for making the most of every journey so we tacked on a couple of days in Seville before driving down to see Fiona, Lee & Amelia in the mountains of Andalucia.
Wow! Seville! What an incredible city. I had found the hotel on an online Daily Telegraph travel article and we weren’t disappointed. About as central as you could possible get in the historic old quarter of Seville, the Casa De Colon is a perfect base from which to explore the incredible architecture and tapas bars, about 30 seconds walk to the cathedral and only a couple more minutes to the stunning Alcazar.
We started our first morning with a wander to the Alcázar, the Moorish royal palace and filming location for Game of Thrones (not that we watch it but apparently it’s ‘The Watergardens of Dorne’ in the program). I had no preconceptions of what we were about to see and it’s fair to say we were both totally blown away by the beauty of the gardens, the architecture and the artwork/mosaics that fill this incredible place. I’m not sure that my photos really do it justice but below are a few shots I took while walking round, mostly mouth agape, in awe at the spectacular views!
After lunch (involving Iberico ham, yes, I am completely addicted to it, have been for years so coming to the region it originates from was just a massive bonus for me) we decided to take in Seville cathedral, which is apparently the third largest church in the world, over 600 years old and once again utterly awe-inspiring with great views of the city from the top of the bell tower…
On Fiona’s advice I had also booked myself & Leanne into the Aire ancient baths & spa for a 45 minute massage and to experience the various thermal pools. It was a truly special experience that neither of us will forget, the massages were amazing but I think the highlight for both of us was the ‘Floatarium’ – a salt pool in which you can just lay back & float in the warm water. Literally the most relaxing experience we’ve ever had. After the pools & massages we were then lucky enough to head up to the rooftop pool to see the sun set over Seville, having the pool to ourselves was just a bonus. What a perfect day!
The below shot, taken at the rooftop pool (of Leanne looking very chilled out) is the only one in this post which was taken on my phone but the iphone 7 does a pretty good job and I don’t think it looks too out of place amongst the pro dlsr shots! Crazy really.
The next morning while walking to get coffees we spotted tour guides selling Segway Tours of Seville so we grabbed our coffees and spent the next 90 minutes whizzing around on two wheels, seeing far more than we could have done on foot in the time we had. It was great fun!
After our Segway experience it was time to pick up the hire car & head into the mountains to Fiona & Lee’s house. The scenery and little villages in the mountain are so picturesque, I think we are going to have to head back in spring to see some more. I took my latest drone (the DJI Mavic Pro) with us and got a few shots in the mountains plus some great footage of the many motorcyclists enjoying the winding roads & scenery.
The final day we were there was shoot day so we headed to an amazing village in the mountains in view of Fiona & Lee’s house, called Zahara. Fiona’s parents joined us for the shoot since they live out there a couple of hours drive away and we took a wander around the village & up to the castle at the top. What a location! And look at little Amelia in her sunglasses!! Here’s a handful of pictures from their shoot. It was lovely to receive a thank you message from Fiona & Lee shortly after I sent them the link to their gallery: “WOW!!!!! Thank you, you’re a genius. As with the wedding photos I can’t put into words how much this means.”
I’d like to say a huge thank you to Fiona & Lee for making this trip possible, it was so good to take in the beautiful city of Seville and to see parts of Spain I had never seen before. It’s made me realise that there is so much more to Spain than the coast that so many of us seem to stick to. It was also amazing to be able to spend time with Fiona, Lee & Amelia, we are already planning our next trip back there in 2018 to continue the adventure, watch this space!
• Travel photography Spain • UK destination lifestyle portrait photographer • Portrait photography in Spain • Seville travel photography•
We were so lucky with the weather on Sunday for Guy & Anna’s family portrait shoot at Felbrigg Hall.
The shoot was one of my ‘Autumn in North Norfolk’ themed discount family portrait sessions and the combination of the golden autumnal light, fallen leaves and this lovely little family really made some gorgeous photos that I know will be treasured. There wasn’t much of a plan for the shoot, as is often the case, just take a wander & see what interesting spots for photos we find along the way. I like to get a mixture of loosely directed shots (not going to leave everything to chance!) and also a good collection of natural shots of the family just being themselves & having some fun.
One other feature of the Autumn shoots which I am going to make a habit from now on for my portrait photography is to keep it really simple gear-wise – one camera, one lens (the Sigma 50mm f1.4 Art lens before you ask) and no flashes whatsoever – all natural light. Apart from loving the look of the images through this lens I think it’s a great focal length since it’s the closest to how our eyes see so the images are as natural as you can get. I enjoy the fact that just having one lens makes me really think about the compositions and my placement in relation to the subjects (rather than just grabbing the zoom ring & changing the focal length to suit). Plus I’m not lugging all sorts of gear around so I can be pretty nimble & reactive if I need to be and it takes away any decisions on what lens to use so I can really concentrate on the subjects.
Anyway that’s enough geek talk, here’s just a handful of the photos we got on Sunday….
I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing the results of our little wander at Felbrigg, sadly the half price deal is now closed but I am offering vouchers for Family Lifestyle Portrait shoots like this in North Norfolk between now and Christmas 2017 at the reduced rate of £150 per session (usually £200), valid for use until the end of 2018, the shoots last 60-90 mins and include two 12×8 inch prints of your choice (worth £40) plus the option to order more prints starting at £10 each or customised coffee-table books and USB drives with all of the high resolution finished image files to make prints/share at your leisure.
Please drop me a line if you’d like to give a special family in your life something unique and truly personalised this Christmas.
I can be found using any of the following numbers or letters: 07941009745 / 01263 821589 • email@example.com
…or go to the Contact Page of my website & put in your details and I will email you a pdf with all the information you could need about the lifestyle shoots.
• Lifestyle family portrait photographers in North Norfolk • Norfolk portrait photographers • Natural photography in Norfolk •
Sorry to drop the C-word in November but CHRISTMAS is coming and now is a great time to be getting a lovely, natural set of family photos ready to give to your loved ones this year. Not only that but we all know how quickly the little ones grow up and before you know it the moment has passed and all you have are your memories, a few blurry iphone shots (which are unlikely ever to be printed out and therefore eventually lost into the ether) and a stack of starchy school photos!
For the next three weeks (until 3rd Dec) I am offering half price family lifestyle portrait shoots in the North Norfolk area. The shoots are £100 (usually £200) for an hour or so in the North Norfolk countryside or coast for up to 5 family members and include two 12x8in prints (usually £20 each) plus an online gallery and the option to purchase additional prints (starting at £10), hard-backed coffee table books or all of the high resolution image files on USB drive so you can make your own prints/mugs/t-towels/keyrings if that’s your bag!
Using just one 50mm lens and one camera body, purely ambient light and no flashes the shoots are really relaxed & natural and involve a fun walk at your choice of North Norfolk location below. The local NT parks are great for the golden leaves but equally the coastal spots offer some lovely backdrops for your family portrait shoot North Norfolk-style.
The locations available for this offer include Sheringham Park, Felbrigg park, Sheringham cliffs, Sheringham beach, Cromer beach, Cromer pier, Morston Saltmarsh and Blakeney harbour.
So grab your wellies and a woolly hat & scarf and let’s get out into that fresh air!
Below are some example shots from a great little shoot last week at Sheringham Park with David, Becci & Amelie. To book your HALF PRICE autumn family portrait shoot drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or give me a call on 01263 821589/07941009745
• North Norfolk portrait photographers • Portrait photography in Norfolk • Norfolk lifestyle photos •
It’s that time of year when the wedding season has drawn to a close and the commercial work comes in dribs & drabs so I like to keep the creative juices flowing with some personal projects. Since owning the drones I have got into film-making and really enjoy the process from initial planning, through to filming and final edit.
This latest short film is one which I am really pleased with and showcases some of the beautiful North Norfolk coast in Autumn time. The soundtrack is by a talented local composer who goes by the name of Reg Length. Reg has written scores for films and commercials amongst other jobs so it’s a real honour to have him compose a piece to accompany this aerial video of the coast. I am sure you will agree it compliments the video footage beautifully.
If you’d like to hear more of Reg’s work his website is reglength.com and more of his work can be found on Soundcloud here. Sadly Reg’s dog Buddy passed away on the day that the video was finally published so I’d like to dedicate it to Buddy.
Charlie & Ben’s wedding was second of three weddings for me over the August Bank Holiday weekend and once again it was a beautiful summer’s day (on a bank holiday weekend! How is that possible?!)
They had chosen to get married at beautiful Bayfield Hall just outside Holt in North Norfolk, with Charlie & her bridesmaids using Brecks House on the Bayfield estate to get ready so that’s where I started the day’s wedding photography coverage.
The house was a hive of activity with make-up being done by the talented Holly Wright and hair by Jo Jordan….
With the ladies all ready I headed down the farm track to Bayfield Hall to catch up with Ben and the guests who were gathering under the awning up by the amazing old church ruin at the hall…
Shortly the girls arrived in a VW camper followed by Charlie…
After a lovely outdoor ceremony with stunning views across the grounds to the lake everyone headed down the hill, the guests were given champagne while Ben & Charlie & their parents headed into the hall for the second part of the ceremony. This is how the Marry in Norfolk duo ceremonies work – you can have a ceremony anywhere you like (even on the beach!) and the official part needs to be done in the registry office or in a licensed, approved venue. A brilliant idea!
With the official part completed and confetti thrown we cracked on with a few quick groups which Charlie & Ben had requested. Starting with a shot of everyone from one of the upstairs windows of the hall. There were also a few shots of family & friends plus of course the groomsmen & bridesmaids. Ben’s groomsmen decided they wanted to form a human pyramid for a shot, I have the say this wasn’t my idea and I was a bit worried how it was going to go but these guys are clearly experienced ‘pyramiders’ and did a brilliant job of it!
After a gorgeous afternoon enjoying champagne & canapes in the sunshine everyone headed down to the marquee by the lake for the wedding breakfast. The hospitality & catering were taken care of by the talented team at Hatter Events. I was lucky enough to photograph the wedding of the owners of Hatter events – Tom & Hayley – a few years back and I can vouch for their incredible standard of service, organisation and amazing food.
Charlie & Ben are/were very keen hockey players (as are many of their friends) so they prepared a surprise hockey ‘guard of honour’ for their entrance to the marquee…
Once everyone was seated the speeches commenced. I thought it was really nice that Charlie & Ben did a joint speech, after all why shouldn’t the bride get to say a few words on her wedding day as well?! I’ve seen this at a few weddings this year and I think it’s a great idea.
As the meal was served I left them to eat, (no one is going to thank me for taking photos of them putting food in their mouth!), and got the drone up in the air for a few aerial shots of this stunning Norfolk wedding venue, and what a beautiful evening for it!
Charlie’s brother saw me flying the drone and revealed he also had a drone with him, a brilliant little DJI Spark, so he put that up too and was also getting some aerial shots. Boys and their toys eh (guilty as charged)? Gotta love it!
Meal over it was party time and boy did these guys know how to rock a party! Starting with the first dance followed by some super energetic dancing by pretty much everyone!
What a fun wedding to photograph and after shooting two full day’s weddings in a row I was expecting to be pretty exhausted but the fun of the weekend’s weddings so far really had me energised and I could have happily carried on shooting all night!
• Bayfield Hall wedding photographers • Wedding photographers in North Norfolk • Wedding photographers Holt •
Back in late August this year I was excited to be returning to the stunning Bruisyard Hall & barn in Suffolk for Brooke & Mario’s wedding. Set in 700 acres of land, the hall is truly magnificent and with their newly refurbished medieval barn for the reception it really is a venue that has it all.
The girls were getting ready in the main hall and the lads just down a short path at the barn which allowed me to get some shots of both parties getting ready.
I think for this blog post I’ll let the photos do the talking but as you can see it was a stunning wedding to photograph and a Suffolk wedding venue which I will always love shooting at…
• Suffolk wedding photographers • Wedding photographers at Bruisyard Hall • Bruisyard Barn wedding photos •
In the last couple of years I’ve been lucky enough to be commissioned to photograph and make short films for Sheringham Golf Club and the Royal Cromer Golf Club (although at the time of writing their website is down so the link may not work).
Golf course photography really does require the right weather, light and seasonal course conditions to work well so it takes some planning (and luck with the weather!). Photographing the course itself is just a part of the coverage I offer, I also like to capture the features and views which make each course unique along with the clubhouse facilities and pro shop.
In many shots the course looks better without anyone cluttering the place up but some shots of people enjoying the course are always good, I just have to make sure they have a good-looking swing!
I also offer aerial photography and video of the golf courses which really help to show the layout of the holes and topography of the course. For Sheringham I was commissioned to make a short film showing off the course at it’s best, I used a combination of aerial and ground-based video to produce the below film for them…
Below are a selection of stills shot for the club for their website and club brochure. They were photographed over a few sessions to capture the different light at different times of the day…
Next are a small handful of the shots I did for the Royal Cromer Golf Club…
Finally below is a hole-by-hole aerial video I did for Sheringham for a virtual round at this beautiful links course here on the North Norfolk coast…
If you are the manager or pro at a golf course and would like more information on my golf course photography & video service please contact me on email@example.com or call for a chat on 01263 821589.
• Golf course photographers in Norfolk • Golf course photographers in Suffolk • Aerial golf course photography • Golf course drone filming •
My penultimate wedding of 2017 and it was with great pleasure that I revisited two locations I hadn’t shot at in a few years for Catherine & Olly’s wedding – the stunning Roman Catholic Cathedral in Norwich followed by a reception at beautiful Elms Barn just over the border in Suffolk.
I started the day’s coverage at Catherine’s parents’ house for some preparation shots.
It was a hive of activity, the dresses hanging ready to be put on, make-up stations in the conservatory and everyone had a chance to get their hair done, chaps included!
Before long it was time to head in to the city and hunt for a parking space close to the cathedral. Luckily I found a spot pretty much next door so could get straight in and capture the guests arriving…
The cathedral really is a beautiful place to photograph, especially when the sun catches the smoke from the incense and creates these evocative streaks of light streaming in through the leaded windows…
…and look at that architecture!
Formal part of the day completed it was over to Elms Barn for the wedding reception…
During Olly’s speech a bat decided to perform some aerial manoeuvres in the barn much to everyone’s delight (it may have even been two now I look at the two different directions people are looking/pointing in this shot!). As a big Batman fan I think Olly was the most pleased and took it as a sign!
Once everyone was eating I took the opportunity to break out the drone for some aerial shots of Elms barn and the site. Always good to get a different perspective on things….
It was great to get back to Elms Barn after not having photographed a wedding there for about five years. I’d forgotten what a great venue it is, not the lightest of rooms in the main barn but a lovely atmosphere and loads of good spots in & around the grounds for photos.
For the full gallery of Catherine & Olly’s wedding at Norwich Cathedral and Elms Barn click here.
• Norwich cathedral wedding photos • Photographers at Elms Barn, Beccles • Wedding photographers in Norwich • Suffolk wedding photographers •