Wedding Photography at Rossington Hall

Last week I assisted in the delivery of a fantastic Wedding Photography workshop hosted by the talented James Davies Photography.  The chosen venue for the day was the Stunning Rossington Hall near Doncaster, South Yorkshire.

The day focused on being creative with available light and using locations around the property along with the introduction of Off Camera Flash (OCF) techniques to capture the ambience of the venue with our model bride & groom.

The 10 delegates assembled for early introductions, aided by the beautiful pastries with tea & coffee supplied by the venue, and then it was straight into the nitty gritty of how James achieves his images.

Having worked with James on numerous weddings and other photography assignments, I understand the way he works and his approach to achieving his images, but its the way he delivers his theoretical knowledge on his courses in an easy to understand manner that demystifies the technicalities of working with OCF.

Below you can find some ‘behind the scenes’ images which i took, along with examples of images i managed to grab along the way showing what can be achieved.

Throughout the day, all these images were taken on my trusty Fuji X system cameras which i use throughout my wedding & commercial photography and you can find many more examples of my work on my website.

If your a photographer looking to either enhance your photography, or what i’ve shown you here is of particular interest please do get in touch.  James runs numerous courses throughout the year and I’m sure he’d be delighted to have you join him on the next one.

Rossington Hall Doncaster Wedding Photographer Rob FerrolRossington Hall Doncaster Wedding Photographer Rob FerrolRossington Hall Doncaster Wedding Photographer Rob FerrolWedding photography training day at Rossington Hall, DoncasterRossington Hall Doncaster Wedding Photographer Rob FerrolRossington Hall Doncaster Wedding Photographer Rob FerrolRossington Hall Doncaster Wedding Photographer Rob FerrolRossington Hall Doncaster Wedding Photographer Rob FerrolRossington Hall Doncaster Wedding Photographer Rob FerrolRossington Hall Doncaster Wedding Photographer Rob Ferrol

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Mystical Marrakech and beyond.

I’ve been lucky enough to do a fair bit of travelling over the years.  Unfortunately much of this was before the photography bug had bitten me.  Anyway, having planned a surprise birthday treat for my daughter i figured that this would also be a fab opportunity to try my hand at a little travel photography.

I’d visited Morocco some 15+ years ago and had many fond memories of the culture, people and lifestyle of this amazing country.  The sights, smells & tastes of the spice markets & street food were a bewildering attack on all of your senses and i was excited to experience these again, with my daughter, and this time with my camera in hand.

I was also keen to pay a little attention to the amazing architecture that still exists in this country, some of which has not changed its appearance for hundreds of years.  From the mystical medina of Marrakech’s old town to the long abandoned Casbah’s on the edge of the Sahara desert there was certainly plenty to capture our attention.

For the trip i travelled light from a photographers point of view, with just 2 Fuji XT-1’s and a small selection of prime & zoom lens’. The cameras were amazing to work with, especially in the tight confines of the Souks.  I was able to work relatively unnoticed and if you’ve ever been to Marrakech you’ll know how difficult it can sometimes be photographing on the streets.  Many people dont like having their photograph taken and those that do often come asking for money for the privilege.

Marrakech itself is a city that is full of life, it never seems to sleep.  That said, it’s at night that it seems its liveliest.  We travelled in July and, true to our expectations, the heat of the day was pretty much unbearable, hence the reason many stay indoors during the day and emerge at night when the temperature had dropped a little.  Talking of the temperature, towards the end of our stay the temp was 45 degrees Celsius and with the heat index of the stiff Saharan wind this felt more like 49 degrees celsius.   Anyway, the buzz of the Medina at night, especially on the Jemaa El-Fnaa is a must for any traveller to Morocco but watch out for the Snakes & Monkeys!!

So, enough of the blurb heres a selection of images from our trip which includes Marrakech and our excursion through the High Atlas Mountains to the edge of the Sahara Desert to visit the ancient Casbah’s of Telouet and Ait Ben-Haddou.

Moroccan Flag.

The Moroccan Flag. The green pentagram represents the 5 Pillars of Islam.

With Snake charmers, Monkeys, food & entertainers the square of Jemaa El-Fnaa (square of the dead) is a full-on sensory overload but certainly a must see!!  The Koutoubia Mosque, the largest in Africa, sits close by to the west of the square and if the towering minaret doesn’t grab your attention the call to prayer certainly will.  Views of all the activity are best viewed from one of the many cafes that offer roof top terraces and one of my favs was the Le Grande Balcon Du Cafe which offered panoramic views and there most amazing spot for capturing the sunset, but get there early to secure your space.

Morocco, Marrakech, Jemaa El-Fnaa, Sign

The tanneries are somewhat of an experience and if your a little sensitive to strong odours then maybe its not for you.  But, if you do visit you’ll be given a bunch of mint leaves to ward off the smells a little and a whistle stop tour finishing of being taken to see the “finished products” AKA the leather shop.  Here you will experience the most amazing display of leather goods but also the most amazing level of pressure sales you’ll probably ever come across.  Don’t be forced into buying if you dont want anything but if you do, be sure to bargain hard and firm.

Morocco LR-5888

The tropical gardens, Jardin Marjorelle, offer some respite from the madness of Jemaa El-Fnaa with their abundant collection of exotic Cactus and other plants & palms set around the deep blue of the buildings that were once an artists studio.  Until 2008 the gardens were owned by the designer Yves Saint Laurent.

Jardin Majorelle Marrakech

The alleyways of the souks are a maze and getting lost is all part of the fun.  Almost anything is on sale from skins to bones and treasures to tatt.  If you can’t find it in there then i dont think it exists. Be prepared to haggle and walk away if you dont get the price you like, very often they will chase you and agree to your offer.  Their sales patter/technique can sometimes appear aggressive but dont let that stop you bargaining.  Also watch out for the ‘ever helpful’ guides – young males who seem to be everywhere to help guide the lost looking tourist.  As we found out they can, and will, lead you the wrong way, or the long way (but not always though) and expect a little payment at the end. Having already visited the Souks of Fez one thing i did notice in the Souks of Marrakech was the abundance of mopeds.  The booming things were everywhere, even in the most crowded of places they were intent on pushing their way through and on the quieter alleyways they seemed to travel at some speed so do watch out for them.  It’s something that i do not recall being an issue in Fez.

Medina & Souk, Marrakech, Morocco.

The Palais La Bahia, Palais El Badi and the Medersa Ben Youssef each display fine examples of Moroccan architecture from the ages.  With intricate mosaics, carved cedar wood and the finest moulded plaster walls that any modern day architect would find difficult to emulate.  Listen for the Storks nesting on the walls of the Palais El Badi, they make the strangest noise at dawn & dusk.

Morocco, Marrakech travel photography by Rob Ferrol

We ventured out to the edges of there Sahara desert passing through the high Altas mountains, along twisting roads and the Tizi n’Tichka, the highest mountain pass in North Africa, to the Casbah’s of Telouete and Ait Ben-Haddou, the latter of which has been the backdrop of many films including The Mummy, Gladiator and the more recent The Game of thrones.  Although we didn’t make it to the Sandy “dunes’ part of the Sahara, which was another days travel away, with was certainly very barren and a world away from the hustle & bustle of Marrakech.  We even had time for a Camel ride but thats another story 🙂

"Berber TV"  at the Casbah of Telouet.

“Berber TV” at the Casbah of Telouet.

Morocco is truly an amazing place and has much to offer any traveller, certainly more than one visit could cover anyway, so im hoping to make a return visit myself sometime soon.  If you’d like to experience a different lifestyle & culture then be sure to put it on your bucket list.  As always, if you enjoyed this little blog please do leave me a comment and also feel free to share it on your social media sites.

http://www.robferrol.com

Derbyshire Wedding Photographer, Ringwood Hall – Laura & Robbie

It was massive pleasure to capture the special day of Laura & Robbie a few weeks ago.  They contacted me after being guests at a wedding of one of their friends and loved the work i produced for them.  Both of them looked fantastic and i’ve included a few links from their chosen wedding suppliers.

The venue for their big day was the wonderful Ringwood Hall, near Chesterfield, which boasts some beautiful period features, glittering chandeliers and some wonderful ornate gardens offering plenty of photographic opportunities.  It really is a pleasure to photograph weddings at this venue.  A big thank you to the staff a Ringwood Hall too, who very helpful and a pleasure to work with.

Laura & Robbie Booked our full day package that allows us to capture images from bridal & groom prep right through to the cake cutting & first dance.  This captures the full essence of your special day and creates a compelling storybook portfolio of images.

Here are a few of their images from their special day.  If you’d like to find out more about our wedding photography please visit our website or feel  free to get in touch, we’d love to hear from you.

Venue – Ringwood Hall

Dress – Nora Eve

Makeup – Bridal Creative

Hair – I Heart Hair

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Beautiful Pre-Wedding Photoshoot – Ringwood Hall, Derbyshire – Laura & Robbie

Laura & Robbie’s wedding is only a few weeks away and it was fantastic catching up with them both for their pre-wedding photoshoot at Ringwood Hall in Derbyshire.  The couple booked me as their wedding photographer back in 2013 after seeing how i worked and the images i produced at they were both guests at.

They are certainly full of fun and energy and i know that their big day will be a blast.  After a brief chat over coffee to go over their schedule/timings for the wedding we headed out into the grounds of Ringwood Hall to create some beautiful natural couple portraits.  Ringwood Hall offers some beautiful secluded spots with sone fillies and hidden seating areas that will be a great setting for some stunning emotive wedding images.

So, until their big day, here are a few images from their engagement session.  If you’d like to find out more about my wedding photography please do get in touch or see my website.

Couples engagement photoshoot by Rob Ferrol Couples engagement photoshoot by Rob Ferrol Couples engagement photoshoot by Rob Ferrol Couples engagement photoshoot by Rob Ferrol Couples engagement photoshoot by Rob Ferrol Couples engagement photoshoot by Rob Ferrol Couples engagement photoshoot by Rob Ferrol Couples engagement photoshoot by Rob Ferrol Couples engagement photoshoot by Rob Ferrol Couples engagement photoshoot by Rob Ferrol Couples engagement photoshoot by Rob Ferrol Couples engagement photoshoot by Rob Ferrol Couples engagement photoshoot by Rob Ferrol

Every 3 days

Many of you already know that my son was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes almost three years ago now, but I’d just like to take this opportunity to blog not about photography for a change and give you a little insight into what my six year old son has to endure every three days, the dreaded cannula change.

Since his diagnosis his life, and ours, has been changed immensely. Type 1 Diabetes is a very life changing condition that requires a somewhat regimented lifestyle, to some degree anyway. Andrew started his first 9 weeks as a Diabetic with 4 daily insulin injections. Insulin is the essential hormone that is required for our cells to use and absorb the fuel from the foods we eat. Life cannot exists with out insulin, just like the air we breathe. Under normal circumstances our bodies produce insulin in the Pancreas to match demand depending on what we eat. In a Type 1 Diabetic the cells in the pancreas have been destroyed. This destruction can be manifested in a number of ways such as genetic/hereditary factors, environmental and predominantly an autoimmune response to infection or illness. Type 1 diabetes is not related poor lifestyle/dietary factors like the much more prominent Type 2 Diabetes. It’s a sad fact though that many people think a child with Type 1 Diabetes has been caused by “eating too many sweets”, it couldn’t be further from the truth.

Anyway, back to Andrew. After 9 weeks of injections we were lucky enough to live in an area that promoted the use of Insulin pump therapy and Andrew was given his first pump. This was a lifestyle breakthrough, he could eat like any other normal child and have the odd snack between meals if he needed without the need for extra injections. The downside to the pump is the cannula change and even after almost 3 years it’s still an unpleasant time for Andrew. There is lots of research ongoing into other ways of administering this life sustaining hormone but for now this is the way it has to be.

Below are a series of images depicting the the process we go though every 3 days.

Here are all the items we need for a cannula change.

Here are all the items we need for a cannula change.

We have to load the cartridge with insulin.

We have to load the cartridge with insulin.

Then we have to attach the super fine tubing.

Then we have to attach the tubing.

Now the fiddly bit.  We have to prime the tubing and remove all the air bubbles.  This process can take a little while but is very important ans air bubbles can create an air-lock or affect the measured dose of insulin during pump operation.

Now the fiddly bit. We have to prime the tubing and remove all the air bubbles. This process can take a little while but is very important as air bubbles can create an air-lock which will affect the measured dose of insulin during pump operation.

Here if the cannula, a superfine tube attached to a sticky pad. A 1 cm steel needle sits in the tube.

Here if the cannula, a superfine tube attached to a sticky pad. A 1 cm steel needle sits in the tube.

Here is the cannula all ready and primed for firing in the insertion device.  Andrew calls this the 'Kerchunker'.  This fires the cannula into Andrews skin while at the same time securing the sticky pad.

Here is the cannula all ready and primed for firing in the insertion device. Andrew calls this the ‘Kerchunker’.
This fires the cannula into Andrews skin while at the same time securing the sticky pad.

Once the cannula is in place we remove the steel needle.

Once the cannula is in place we remove the steel needle.

Andrew then has to wear a specila back-pack that contains his pump.   We like to involve Andrew in all aspects of his care.  He love being able to reconnect his tubing.

Andrew then has to wear a special back-pack that contains his pump.
We like to involve Andrew in all aspects of his care. He love being able to reconnect his tubing.

Cannula change over for another 3 days.  Andrew is a happy we boy again.

Cannula change over for another 3 days. Andrew is a happy we boy again.

FREE Adobe CS2

Just a quick blog and heads up that Adobe have released their CS2 suite for FREE.  This represents a great opportunity for people starting off in photography and for those who have found the latest versions of Adobe Photoshop too expensive and out of reach.

This is a full version download with all the original features and although a few years old now it will open up a whole new level of creativity if you have never used Adobe Photoshop before.

You can download the software here after creating an Adobe Account.

This software have some limitations though, it’s not compatible with the MAC OS Lion (10.7) & Mountain Lion (10.8) and there may be compatibility issues with Windows 7 or 8.  Full information can be found on the Adobe website.

Adobe CS2

A Charitable Success

You may remember sometime ago I blogged, and probably blogged again, about an exciting project that I had started.  I wanted to create a unique charity event for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), a charity close to my heart since my son had been diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes out of the blue.  For those not in the know, Type 1 diabetes is not lifestyle related or age related like type 2, it is manifested mainly by the immune system attacking the crucial cells in the pancreas that produce insulin.  Insulin is needed to maintain life just as much as you and i breathe oxygen, without it you will die – blunt i know but that’s the truth.  It requires multiple daily injections of insulin or insulin delivered via cannula.  Its a condition that’s is hard to cope with as an adult so think what it is like for a 4 year old child.  JDRF exists to find a cure and to improve the care of those affected.  Here is another hard fact – Type 1 Diabetes research gets NO direct government funding unlike that of its counterpart Type 2.

So, with the aim of raising awareness of Type 1 and raising funds, I conceived the idea of bringing a bunch of models together at a stunning scenic location and invite photographers along to hone their portrait skills in a fun and friendly atmosphere.  I wanted everyone involved to get something back from the day and I think I created an event where everyone was a winner.

MUA Charlii working with Model Emily
Image by Daniel Torridon

MUA Lydia with First Time Model Ashleigh
Image by Daniel Torridon

The day took place at Rufford Abbey in Nottinghamshire last weekend where we assembled on mass by the old Abbey ruins.  I had 9 models with a mix of experience from beginner to professional, 2 fantastic makeup artists, 30 photographers, again, with a mix of experience and a whole bunch of support staff.

Group Image on the Steps Of Rufford Abbey
Image by Jason Hicking

The day started early for myself and a few others setting up the reception area and sorting the room kindly donated by Rufford Abbey for the MUAs and models to prepare.  My friends Bryn & Mike were a great help at this point as i had to be in about ten places at the same time, lol.  The staff at Rufford were fantastic and a great support throughout the day and i cant thank them enough for allowing me to use this stunning Nottinghamshire venue. Lydia and Charlii, the two MUAs, created some truly stunning looks that complimented the models outfits perfectly, they kindly donated their time and deserve a special mention, thank you both.  A special thanks also need to go to Kerri Miller from Starstruck Designs who provided some beautiful wedding dresses and wedding accessories for the models to use.  Her hand made pieces are absoloutley stunning and the perfect accompanyment to a brides special day.

Jessica & Luke
Image by Rob Ferrol

It soon became a hive of activity when the photographers and models started to arrive and i  felt like i had to be in ten places at once.  With the models ready and the photographers looking like a hungry pack of paparazzi the photography was soon under way and the last minute nerves were soon forgotten about. 

Photographers and Models in Action
Image by Marisa Cashill

The models were absolute stars and all deserved a medal, they had to brave the very cold winds and occasional rain shower while facing the barrage of lens’s pointing in their direction.  As mentioned earlier, a couple of them were on their very first photoshoot and the way they coped is a credit to them all.  Many photographers took time out to pass on some kind word of praise to me about how well they were doing.  Each and every one of them should be proud of how well the did.

Model Emily
Image by Sara Hazeldine

Model Dixie
Image by J Benton

Model Lucie
Image by Beata Ryske

Model Richie
Image by Rob Ferrol

The photographers seemed to be having a great time too!  There was lots of joviality and banter as everyone was helping each other with techniques and advice while forming new friendships and doing a little business networking.  My good friend Daniel was also instrumental at offering guidance on using natural light creatively.  It was great to see people making use of both flash and natural light and the possibilities at Rufford were endless.  The quality of the work produced was outstanding and it was nice to see how others view and edit a similar shot.

Model Ashleigh
Image by Rob Ferrol

Overall the day was a resounding success, it totally exceeded any of my expectations.  Everyone went home in high spirits and with memory cards full of great images.  The portfolios of the models, photographers and MUAs will be bursting at the seams and the charity, thanks to all the donations, is now £1267 better off, an absolutely fantastic figure and far more than i ever expected to raise.  It’s not too late to donate though, you can still make donation throuigh my justgiving page here.

Model Shannon
Image by Serene Miller

I was asked by many on the day if i would arrange another such event and some asked for tutorial sessions too and who am i to disappoint?  I hope to have another such event later in the year so keep dropping by my facebook page for updates or subscribe to my newsletter and this blog.

Model Leigh-Ann

Image by Bryn Graves

Finally I’d just like to thank everyone who helped in any way at all from the re-tweets on Twitter for the fantastic prize donations, they all had a big impact on making this day the success that it was.  A special thanks must also go to Pete Bridgewood for arranging my appearance on BBC Radio Nottingham last month, you can read the blog  about that little escapade here.

Image by Jason Hicking

The images in this blog only highlight a very small selection from all the wonderful photographers who attended the event, it would be an extremely long blog if i included everyone.   Thank you all for allowing me to use them.  Lets see if we can make the next event bigger and better…….