Barbara Leatham Photography: Blog en-us 2021 Barbara Leatham Photography – all rights reserved (Barbara Leatham Photography) Fri, 20 Aug 2021 04:02:00 GMT Fri, 20 Aug 2021 04:02:00 GMT Barbara Leatham Photography: Blog 80 120 Murder, Margaret and Me. a must see for any Agatha fan How Can You Say No...

Murder, Margaret and Me, Salisbury PlayhouseMurder, Margaret and Me, Salisbury PlayhouseSalisbury Playhouse rehersal shoot for Murder, Margaret and Me. Images for Press, PR and social media use.

By Philip Meeks

Thursday 1 – Saturday 24 February

Agatha Christie turns sleuth to uncover a real-life mystery in this comedy thriller.

Agatha Christie and Margaret Rutherford, two of our greatest and most celebrated national treasures, should never have been friends. But they were. Their paths crossed when they found themselves at the heart of one of British cinema’s most successful franchises. However, the Miss Marple films almost didn’t get made.

Agatha didn’t want Margaret to bring her precious spinster to life and Margaret was mortified at the thought of upsetting her fans with something as sordid as murder. But this wasn’t her only reason for resisting the part. Margaret had a terrible secret. One that she’d lived with for a lifetime.

Murder, Margaret and Me is a story of friendship in the long-lost world of the silver screen. As Agatha and Margaret play tug of war with Marple, Agatha (being a woman who wasn’t without a secret or two herself) unearths the shocking truth buried in Margaret’s past.

Staring Kate Brown, Tina Gray and Sarah Parks
Director Damian Cruden; Designer Dawn Allsopp; Lighting Designer Richard G Jones; Sound Designer Yvonne Gilbert

Rehearsal image from Murder Margaret and Me


...when you are are asked by Salisbury Playhouse in Wiltshire to photograph the rehearsals of their latest show, Murder Margaret and Me? Well I simply couldn't. 

Besides having a genuine fascination for the way plays come together, getting to see behind the scenes of the Playhouse would have been reason enough, but to see something of the play that has characters close to my heart; there was just no way I couldn't do this job.

My first memories of watching an Agatha Christie film was ironically Murder at the Gallops, which stars Margaret Rutherford. I had no idea, until this play, that there was so much more to the relationship between the leading lady, Margaret, and the author, Agatha herself.

There's a certain kind of magic that I think we all feel when going to the theatre; watching something bought to life, with inflictions of the voice, a movement of the hand there, a turning of the eye to the audience.  Being with the actors and the director for less than an hour, capturing them go through their lines, working out where things work best, the engagement between themselves and the drawing in of the audience, I didn't want to leave. I was desperate to find out what happened in the story, so two tickets later, I was booked in for the opening night. 

Now, as all good Agatha fans know, it's not good to tell you how it all ends, best that you should go and see for yourself, but I can tell you it is a wonderful show, a really heart felt story and something I would go and see again.

All of three characters were bought to life by the actors. Kate Brown plays Agatha, and she brings to the performance the frustrations that the author must have felt when her Miss Marple was being bought to life on the silver screen. Tina Gray plays Miss Marple, who gives the audience more understanding of the things that are going through the minds of the other two characters. She links the scenes, adds narrative, and gives insights. 

I have to give special mention to Sarah Parks, who plays Margaret Rutherford. All of her mannerisms, her quirks, her voice, just mesmerising and a pleasure to watch. I think because there's very little footage of Agatha Christie so it's not easy for me to say if an actor has caught everything about them, and Miss Marple has been done by so many, she's hard to define, and I think we all have our favourites... But Margaret Rutherford is such a distinctive actor, her knowing looks, her slight tongue in cheek, her posture, Sarah nails it all!

You'll be pleased to know that the show is on until February 24th 2018, so there's still time to see it. Whether you are a fan of Agatha Christie, Margaret Rutherford, Miss Marple or just love a good mystery, this is for you.

In the mean time, please check out some of my images from the rehearsal I photographed. This is not the final production, so please don't think this is what you see if you go to the show. But rehearsals are magical in their own way, unpolished, evolving and special, and an honour to photograph. (and if you pick up a program at the show, you'll see some of my images in print - what a surprise and delight that was for me.








]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) and commercial margaret me murder photos playhouse pr rehearsal salisbury wiltshire Thu, 08 Feb 2018 15:32:41 GMT
The Power Of Photography The Power Of Photography, Walking With A Camera

Life can be very unpredictable when you are self-employed. One minute everything is ticking along at a manageable level and the next you are feeling completely overwhelmed as those jobs you quoted for several weeks ago all get back to you at the same time and all are suddenly very urgent. Add in all the usual "Mum Duties" and all of a sudden you find yourself wondering when you will find time to sleep and stress levels soar. For me there’s one activity that is guaranteed to completely take my mind away from the stresses of daily life and allow me to completely unwind and recharge my batteries.......

Wiltshire Photography Walks (1)Wiltshire Photography Walks (1)

And that activity, believe it or not, is photography!

Yes, even though photography is my business there’s nothing more relaxing and therapeutic than a walk with my camera, connecting with my surroundings and shooting purely for pleasure. I’ve lived in my little Wiltshire village for several years now but every single time I wander around it with my camera it’s like seeing it all through a fresh pair of eyes. Photography allows us all to reconnect with all those little details that we stop seeing in the hurry of everyday life. It gives us the opportunity to slow down and really see the beauty of our surroundings. Regardless of where we live there are endless photo opportunities and beauty all around once we learn to see to them.


Wiltshire Photography Walks (2)Wiltshire Photography Walks (2)

Photography gives me the excuse to go out for long walks, sometimes on my own and sometimes with friends with cameras. The combination of fresh air, creativity and exercise is meditative, calming, inspiring and thought provoking. Every time I return from a ramble with my camera I feel refreshed and revived and ready to take on the world!


Wiltshire Photography Walks (4)Wiltshire Photography Walks (4)

I know I’m not alone in my pursuit of a quiet mind through photography, increasingly more people are coming to recognise it as a therapeutic pastime and many people now engage with photography as part of a wider mindfulness practice. But I also realise that I’m in a minority when I say that I’m happy to wander off alone with my camera so in spring and summer I will be organising a series of photo walks for people of all ages and abilities. These walks will be an opportunity to walk, chat and shoot at a relaxed pace, they won’t be a training course but I will be on hand to offer tips and guidance. Best of all they will end with coffee and cake, or tea and scones, and a chance to compare photos and marvel over how we all see the same things so very differently.

Dates and details will be announced on my Facebook Page but if you would like to receive an email as well head to the Contact Page and send me a quick message.


Wiltshire Photography Walks (3)Wiltshire Photography Walks (3)

The photos accompanying this blog post were taken on my most recent walk around the village, after a few wet days we had a misty morning and I knew I needed to escape with my camera. The sun broke through the mist and the light was just beautiful.......


]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) photo walks in wiltshire photography and mindfulness wiltshire photographer wiltshire photography walks Thu, 01 Feb 2018 10:00:00 GMT
Keeping Your Business Relevant Keeping Your Business Relevant - Advice From A Wiltshire Photographer

Wiltshire Commercial Photographer, Wiltshire Commercial PhotographerCommercial photography services in Wiltshire and surrounding areas. Business portraits, product photography, events. Website and Social media photography.

Who can believe that we are already more than halfway through January? After all it seems like only last week that we were in a panic over Christmas, have we forgotten anyone’s present, if we shop tomorrow would the sprouts still be fresh on Christmas day, if we leave it any longer will we still get that brand of mince pie we love? You know how it is, endless questions going through our minds as we analyse the smallest of details and then all of a sudden it’s mid-January and all forgotten.

Unfortunately we often treat our businesses in the same way as Christmas. As we prepare to launch a new business, a rebrand or a new product or service we plan and pay attention to every tiny detail making sure that nothing gets overlooked. But then time flies by faster than we realise and before we know it all that careful planning is long behind us and maybe things have evolved and changed within the business.

When did you last take the time to sit down and cast a really critical eye over the public persona of your business?

If you can’t remember now might be a good time to grab yourself a cup of tea and really analyse the outward appearance of your business. Over time our businesses evolve, product ranges change, our personal style develops or maybe we even set off in a different direction. Outside influences come into play too, styles change and something that was once unique and on trend might now be very commonplace and maybe even a little clichéd.

Try to view your business as a potential customer and evaluate every aspect. Is your tone of voice consistent throughout your website and social media? Is your logo still unique and relevant? Sometimes a style of logo can suddenly become really popular and you might find that your logo which was once eye catching no longer stands out.

Cast an extra critical eye over the images you are using, people often form a lasting first impression based on images alone and you don’t want that first impression to be the wrong one. If your business has evolved do your images still give the correct brand message? Are you using any images of discontinued product lines? If you are a creative business have your images kept up with changes in your style?

And finally, take a look around and see what styles of images other businesses are using, trends change and you don’t want to be left behind using photos that make your business look outdated. Business portraits are a perfect example, they no longer need to be a very formal headshot on a white background (unless of course that’s in keeping with your brand). They can be fun and quirky, relaxed and friendly or they could even be documentary in style. Customers increasingly want to feel like they know the person behind the brand so pay careful attention to this area of your photography.

Why am I sharing all this with you? Because just last week I realised that some of the images I was using in my portfolios were over three years old and weren’t a fair reflection of my business or my photographic style.

If you are confused about what style of business portraits are appropriate for your business this blog post may help. If you’d like to have a chat about your photography please head over to the Contact Page and get in touch.

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) commercial photography salisbury headshot photographer in wiltshire product photography salisbury photographer wiltshire business photographer Thu, 18 Jan 2018 09:55:00 GMT
Signs of Spring New Beginnings


Spring 2018, snowdrops, flower art,Snowdrops, a sign of SpringSpring images taken in Hampshire on Sunday 14th January 2018 copyright Barbara Leatham Photography all rights reserved Snowdrops


Every year after Christmas I look for signs of Spring, the new shoots breaking through the frozen ground, the hopes that the season will bring with it a little more warmth. 

It's not that I'm fair weathered, I like to go out what ever the season, but Spring always makes me feel like the sluggishness of the winter will soon be over and the days will be getting longer. Ultimately that gives me more light for photography, a better reason to be out and about, when exercise doesn't feel like exercise, because it's combined with something I love doing.

I've realised that when I'm out with the camera, I'm walking, planking, squatting, lunging, using my inner core, and filling my lungs with fresh air.

At the weekend I walked about 6 and a half miles, I also took a whole bunch of photos, and I did it with my family, so all in all a great day, here are a few of the images I captured.



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) art commercial family flower flowers: fun hampshire leatham photography snowdrops spring wiltshire Tue, 16 Jan 2018 11:57:34 GMT
Great Odds Production Inspiration at the Playhouse to take you into Christmas.



Great Odds by Ester McAuley, Salisbury PlayhouseSophie Coward, Hime Fish, Charlotte Arrowsmith staring in Great Odds at Salisbury Playhouse Summer 2017


In the summer I had the pleasure to watch a production by Esther McAuley called Great Odds at the Salisbury Playhouse in Wiltshire. It tells the story of what it means to follow a dream and if you don't fit in, what to do when the odds are against you.

I took my children with me, James age 11 and Robyn age 10. Many of the other children in the audience were younger, and it was interesting to see how my two interpreted the show, where and when they laughed and responded to the actors compared to the younger ones. A true sign that they are growing up and changing towards being teenagers. They question more than ever and don't take things at face value anymore. Part of me misses their innocence, where the other part of me knows and understands they are preparing for adulthood and all it's multifaceted aspects.

After the show I asked my children what they thought about the play.   James said "I like Marco, he was fun, especially when they picked the name I suggested to the character" He also said "I love that they used sign language so that everyone who was at the show could enjoy it". 
Initially he seemed to respond to the feel of the show, but after a time he said he, "liked how they were telling you not to give up, no matter what happens". So although there was a great deal of entertainment, the under pinning story line did sink in.

Robyn, being that little bit younger, said she liked everything (very diplomatic), and said, "it's good for all ages!" She noted that the parents seemed to be enjoying the show as much as the children, and it was quite heart warming that she was able to see more than just the show, that she took in the reaction of the people watching.

For me, I loved that everyone seemed to leave the show and many of them were humming lots of the tunes, it obviously made an impact to many people in lots of way, but most of all, we left feeling inspired.


I don't usually post a review like this on my website, but I wanted to say that having chased my dreams of being a photographer for many years, that there have been lots of highs and lows, that it is important not to give up. Surround yourself with people who inspire and support you and find a way to make it happen.

So this Christmas, when you are talking to family and friends, and they tell you they have some crazy idea of doing something, rather than pointing out the things that might go wrong, instead put your energy into looking at all the brilliant things that might happen when they succeed. 

And if you get the opportunity to see Great Odds, please go and watch it. Let it remind you that even though we are adults, we still have our dreams too and shouldn't let things get in the way of making them come true.

Great Odds by Esther McAuley at Salisbury Playhouse

Photos supplied by Salisbury Playhouse and MAC's Arcadian and Lighthouse


]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) and arcadian arrowsmith caroline charlotte coward esther family fish fun great jim lighthouse mac's mcauley odds parker photography playhouse salisbury sophie wiltshire Fri, 01 Dec 2017 10:15:00 GMT
Learning When To Say No Reflecting On 10 Years In Business - Advice For a New Business Owner

Ten years of trading is a major business milestone and it’s one I’m very proud to say that Barbara Leatham Photography achieved this year. Like every owner of a small business I’ve needed to adapt and evolve over time, I’d be the first to admit that I’ve made some mistakes along the way but I’ve also learned so much about being in business. I’m often asked what is the most important piece of advice I would give to a new business owner. I’m sure most people will give great advice on marketing, social media, branding etc., but I’d like to share a very different lesson that I wish I’d learned sooner.

The best piece of advice I can give to any creative business owner is that sometimes you need to turn away business. It’s not always easy to say no to a prospective client but it’s really important to work out when no is better for your business than yes. Remember it’s YOUR business and YOU can decide what sort of work you undertake, your business does not need to look the same as every other business in your sector. When you work with the right clients on the right sort of projects your creativity will be ignited, you will produce your best work and your business will flourish. If you don’t become confident in turning away the wrong sort of work you will soon feel creatively stifled and trapped.

Wiltshire Wedding PhotographerWiltshire Wedding Photographer

Set yourself some guidelines to help you feel comfortable saying no.

Let’s use my business as an example. I love to photograph families and I work outdoors to create images full of emotion and narrative. I don’t offer the carefully posed, high key, white background style of some high street studios. I’m able to shoot that way but it’s not to my personal taste so if a family come to me specifically wanting that style I’m happy to refer them elsewhere knowing that I won’t create my best work with them.

For commercial shoots I love to work with clients who have a strong sense of brand and are looking for images full of narrative. The sort of business I would say no to isn’t quite so clearly defined as it is with families but as an example I would decline a commission to shoot a brand new car in a showroom in the style often used in brochures. I would however be bursting with creative ideas if I was shooting a quirky camper van or a vintage car in a great venue with lots of fun styling.

Wedding photography is something I’ve thought long and hard about as part of my business. I eventually came to realise that the only way I could remain fresh and inspired with weddings was reverse the more typical photography business model and make weddings just a very small part of my business. By being very selective and only working alongside couples who I feel have shared values and a strong creative connection means that I am totally inspired by the very small number of weddings I cover. I get to work with couples who are madly in love and open to having a little fun with their wedding photos. Unfortunately it means that I turn away far more weddings than I accept but I’m always happy to recommend other talented and trusted photographers.

If you are a fellow creative business owner I hope my own guidelines will help you create your own boundaries to enable you to do your best work. If you are a prospective client and I recommend another photographer I hope you will understand I have both our best interests at heart!

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) salisbury advice for creative businesses business advice commercial photographer fun family photography salisbury family photography wiltshire photographer wiltshire wedding photographer Thu, 28 Sep 2017 15:19:19 GMT
Autumn Family Photography, My Gift To You Autumn Lifestyle Family Photoshoots, A Gift to Celebrate the Season

Can you feel that hint of autumn in the morning air?

Here in Wiltshire it feels like the seasons are changing earlier than usual this year and although I’m a little sad to see the end of summer I must admit that autumn is my absolute favourite season.

Family lifestyle photography in SalisburyFamily Lifestyle Photography in WiltshireI took the kids to the woods to have fun with the leaves and find conkers. They came home with pockes stuffed full of them and had the best time

I love to see the leaves changing to their beautiful rich autumnal hues. I love that sunsets come earlier and are full of colour and I even get excited about the misty mornings. There’s nothing better than getting all wrapped up in snuggly jumpers, woolly scarves, gloves and wellies and heading off for an autumn adventure with the kids.

Family Lifestyle photography in SalisburyFamily Lifestyle photography in Salisbury

It’s also my favourite time of year for family lifestyle photoshoots, children can relax and let off steam and parents have great fun too. We can go hunting for mushrooms and picking blackberries, collecting conkers and fallen acorns and splashing in puddles. And all the time I’ll be capturing some beautiful, relaxed and natural portraits that will become treasured family keepsakes.

I’m celebrating my favourite season with a special gift for all families who book a lifestyle photoshoot during September or October. Every family having an outdoor autumn session will receive the gift of one of their images as a beautiful desk frame alongside their order.

Autumn Family Photography WiltshireAutumn Family Photography WiltshireI took the kids to the woods to have fun with the leaves and find conkers. They came home with pockes stuffed full of them and had the best time

Autumn is a busy time with lots of families booking photoshoots so they can use the images for Christmas gifts for grandparents and other family members. Don’t leave it too late to book your session!

Click here for more information about lifestyle family photography or head over to the Contact Page to get in touch and book your session.

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) berkshire & hampshire family photography family portraits fun family photography salisbury family photography wiltshire photographer Mon, 11 Sep 2017 15:19:14 GMT
Christmas In July Seasonal Themed Commercial Photography - Why Planning Ahead is Essential

Commercial product photography Salisbury, WiltshireSeasonal themed commercial photoshoots in Wiltshire and surroundings


This year more than ever before I seem to keep stumbling across references to “Christmas In July”. It’s a phrase with different meanings and traditions in different countries but here in the UK it tends to be associated with the large retailers and brands presenting their Christmas offerings to the media.

As a parent it’s a phrase that triggers a moment of panic, after all I’m only just dealing with the summer holidays, surely I can’t be expected to be thinking about Christmas at the same time! But as a business owner it serves as a timely reminder about the importance of planning ahead to avoid adding unnecessary stress to an already busy season. Most of us start January by planning out the upcoming year, I’m now trying to use Christmas in July as a reminder to revisit my plans, make sure everything is on track and that nothing is likely to take me by surprise as the busy season approaches.

Thinking about Christmas in summertime is especially important for any business that needs to update their imagery to match the season and it's something that I always discuss with my regular clients. Love to B are makers of natural skincare products and we’ve recently completed their festive photoshoot. They now have a set of beautifully themed seasonal product images ready to share on their website and social media without any last minute panic.


Commercial photography, Christmas themed, Salisbury WiltshireSeasonal themed commercial photography, London and surroundings

Perhaps you are a designer or artisan with a seasonal product line or maybe you have a restaurant or hotel with festive events. Whatever your business, if you require seasonal images I would encourage you to be planning them now and booking your photographer as a matter of urgency. Leave it too late and you may find that your preferred photographer simply can’t squeeze your photoshoot into their diary.

If you’d like to ensure you are visually prepared for the festive season why not take advantage of my current Christmas In Summer offer. Book your seasonally themed commercial photoshoot during August and you will receive 50% extra images with your chosen package.

If you are concerned about how to make summer look like Christmas I’m always happy to offer suggestions and I often work alongside fabulous editorial stylists Tinker Jo who are capable of magically transforming any scene with their fantastic props and styling skills.

I only have a limited number of commercial photoshoots available on this offer so please call me on 07548 219047 or send a message via the Contact Page to request further details or reserve your slot.

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) berkshire commercial photographer bespoke branding photography salisbury hampshire commercial photographer professional website photography wiltshire wiltshire commercial photographer wiltshire photographer wiltshire photography Fri, 28 Jul 2017 15:15:19 GMT
Butterfly Wishes and Julia's House When something talks straight to your heart


A different blog post from the usual but I really wanted to do everything I possibly can to help raise awareness of two fantastic organisations. Both are organisations that do wonderful work with families who have children with life shortening conditions.

The Butterfly Wishes Network.

Butterfly Wishes Network is a UK wide not-for-profit organisation which provides free professional photography for families with children with various life limiting or life shortening conditions. Butterfly Wishes was started by a group of photographers who met through social media, they wanted to use their skills to provide lasting memories for families who may not otherwise engage a professional photographer.

(Images courtesy of Butterfly Wishes Network)

(Images above courtesy of Butterfly Wishes Network)

Along with almost 400 other professional photographers I volunteer my services for this fantastic organisation. My services have rarely been called on and when they have it’s been for families outside of Wiltshire. Of course I’m happy to travel and I would love to say I haven’t been needed more locally because there aren’t any families that qualify for a shoot but I know that isn’t true.

Some families may be concerned that the experience may be awkward or difficult but all Butterfly Wishes photographers are professional photographers and fully insured and they approach a Butterfly session with the same professionalism that they approach all their shoots. At the same time they are sensitive to the fact that a family may have some additional needs. Many people ask if there is a "catch" and I can say, hand on heart, there is no catch. 

It's important for families to know that they only have to say and the Butterflies Network will not share the photos taken of their families on the Butterflies website. Of course it is always lovely when families kindly let us share on our website, but the most important thing, from the start to the end, is the family.


Juila’s House Childrens Hospices in Wiltshire and Dorset.

Many families just aren’t aware that Butterfly Wishes exists and this was the reason for my visit to Julia’s House children’s hospice in Devizes. Julia’s House is a truly inspiring space, they provide tailored care and support to children with serious medical conditions and their families. I visited to explain the service that is available from Butterfly Wishes and was given a tour of their amazing facilities by Ged Montgomery and Heather Philpotts 

I’m delighted to know that Julia’s House will be telling all their families about Butterfly Wishes, and they will even allow families under their care at home to come into the hospice for their photo shoot if they prefer!

You don't have to wait

The saddest reason that many families don’t receive the services of a Butterfly Wishes photographer is that it’s simply left too late. I can’t stress how important it is not to wait until a child is receiving end of life treatment before applying to Butterfly Wishes. The volunteer photographers will do everything possible to fit in a Butterfly Photo Shoot in a short time frame but unfortunately sometimes it just isn’t possible. The Julia’s House staff will be helping to raise awareness that a family can apply for a Butterfly photographer at any time after a diagnosis and that it’s not a service that is only available in end of life care.

I would love to ask for your help too.....

Wherever you are in the country, if you know a family with a child who has a life limiting condition or an organisation that supports these families, please tell them about Butterfly Wishes and pass on the details below.

And if you happen to be in Wiltshire or Dorset please make sure they are aware of the fantastic Julia’s House.

Butterfly Wishes Network - - email

Julia's House Hospice - - email via the Contact Page.

You can also share this blog on your social media platforms - The Butterfly Wishes, Julia's House and myself, thank you.


If you're a professional photographer and would like to gift your services as a Butterfly Wishes Network photographer then please check out the FAQ on the BWN website - the application form is on there too, and it's so easy to join. #payitforward



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) BWN Butterfly wishes network Julias house butterfly photographer child photography children photography creating memories family family photography professional photographer supporting families wiltshire wiltshire children wiltshire families wiltshire photographer Mon, 10 Jul 2017 08:41:56 GMT
Celebrating World Gin Day  

GIN! How Do You Drink Yours?


World Gin Day 2017 Tiger Gin inspired commercial imageCelebrating World Gin Day June 10th 2017 Barbara Leatham Photography created a set of commercial images inspired by Tiger Gin's unexpected gift of a miniature bottle Totally British - with Tiger Gin are!


What was this quiet Wiltshire photographer to do when a lovely company like Tiger Gin sent such an unexpected, but delightful gift?

Use it as a perfect excuse to test some new studio lights!


World Gin Day Tiger Gin inspired Commercial Image 2017Celebrating World Gin Day June 10th 2017 Barbara Leatham Photography created a set of commercial images inspired by Tiger Gin's unexpected gift of a miniature bottle Best Decisions are Crystal Clear, like Gin!

A diamond in the rough. Read the story behind Tiger Gin's "David and Goliath"


World Gin Day Tiger Gin inspired Commercial Image 2017Celebrating World Gin Day June 10th 2017 Barbara Leatham Photography created a set of commercial images inspired by Tiger Gin's unexpected gift of a miniature bottle Fire and Ice...? Just add Gin

Do you get this one?? A gentle play on words, but one of my favourites


World Gin day Tiger Gin Inspired Commercial Image 2017Celebrating World Gin Day June 10th 2017 Barbara Leatham Photography created a set of commercial images inspired by Tiger Gin's unexpected gift of a miniature bottle Focus on the good things = positive affirmations

Focus on the important things in life, and Gin


World Gin Day Tiger Gin Inspired Commercial Image 2017Celebrating World Gin Day June 10th 2017 Barbara Leatham Photography created a set of commercial images inspired by Tiger Gin's unexpected gift of a miniature bottle Keep Calm and Drink Gin

Being a big tea drinker, I had to do this one


World Gin Day Tiger Gin Inspired Commercial Image 2017Celebrating World Gin Day June 10th 2017 Barbara Leatham Photography created a set of commercial images inspired by Tiger Gin's unexpected gift of a miniature bottle Gin-gle All The Way

Possibly the hardest of the images, but so pretty, and now ready for the festive season


World Gin Day Tiger Gin Inspired Commercial Image 2017Celebrating World Gin Day June 10th 2017 Barbara Leatham Photography created a set of commercial images inspired by Tiger Gin's unexpected gift of a miniature bottle Have a Gin-tastic Christmas

In the world of commercial photography it's not unusual to shoot Christmas images in the middle of summer, like a Boy Scout, be prepared!


World Gin Day Tiger Gin Inspired Commercial Image 2017Celebrating World Gin Day June 10th 2017 Barbara Leatham Photography created a set of commercial images inspired by Tiger Gin's unexpected gift of a miniature bottle There's always time - for gin, for life

Make time for living life, spending it with family and friends and celebrating every moment


And then of course, drink it! Tiger Gin recommend orange as a mixer for their tipple, looking forward to trying it

From me here at Barbara Leatham Photography "Happy World Gin Day"



Are you a company with a product that requires images to show it off? Why not get in touch and see how I can help create some fun/inspiring/creative images for you

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Berkshire Hampshire Salisbury Wiltshire berkshire commercial photographer bespoke commercial fun gin hampsire commercial photographer hi key photography keep calm photography product photography tiger gin wiltshire wiltshire commercial photography world gin day Thu, 08 Jun 2017 09:00:00 GMT
Spring Floral Fine Art Photography The Power of Personal Projects

It’s very easy once you’ve established yourself as a professional photographer to find yourself only getting out the camera when you have a paying client. For the very small minority of photographers who only took up photography as a means to earn money it’s not a problem, but for the vast majority who first fell in love with photography as a hobby and means of creative expression personal work is essential.

When I’m not working for clients you can still find me with a camera of some sort in my hands. Some days that might only be my phone camera as I capture the beautiful Wiltshire countryside while I’m out and about. On other days you will find me with my “proper” camera on hand as I document my family’s daily life or create artistic images, often of flowers.

It may not initially seem that fine art flower photography has much in common with the work I carry out for my clients but I firmly believe that my personal photography makes me a much stronger commercial photographer.


fine art floral photography, bluebellsfine art floral photography, bluebells

When photographing these flowers from my garden I need to take time to study their shape, colour and texture. I need to decide which of the features are important and how I want to display these features in my photographs. I’ll need to think about lighting and how I can use the light to enhance the beauty of the flowers. The styling and layout needs to be considered, do I want to keep the images simple and powerful or do I want to add some styling and props and create an image with a lifestyle feel. For this particular set of images I don't want anything to distract from the beauty of the flowers so I've opted for a simple white background and a more graphic feel for the images.

fine art floral photographyfine art floral photography

Exactly the same thought process is involved when creating images for my commercial photography clients, the only difference is the choice of subject and how the subject is portrayed is entirely my own.

That freedom of choice allows me to exercise my creativity and explore different approaches and techniques, such as image stacking for the anemones above. Image stacking is a technique that involves combining a series of images in Photoshop to produce a final image with a maximum depth of field. It’s a technique that can be useful for photographing jewellery and other products with details that need to be clearly displayed.

If you are a photographer reading this I would strongly encourage you to pursue some form of personal photography project, choose something that interests or inspires you and explore all the different ways that you can photograph it. Use your personal work to try out different approaches, perhaps a different lens, a different lighting approach or a new editing technique. Taking time out to be creative will help you approach your client work with a new found enthusiasm.

If photography is a hobby and you are interested in exploring some new techniques but don't know where to start why not book a bespoke 1-2-1 training session? Click here for more information.

Looking for some floral art work for your home? Did you know I have an extensive catalogue of images for sale as prints? Click here to view!

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Bespoke Photography Training Commercial Photography Wiltshire Fine Art floral photography Photography Training Photography Training Salisbury Spring flower photographs Mon, 22 May 2017 09:00:00 GMT
Business Portraits – Capturing the Personality of Your Business Relaxed and Natural Business Portrait Photography

As a commercial photographer I get to meet all sorts of interesting people and businesses right across Wiltshire, and often much further afield. In fact I meet so many that I couldn’t possibly share all of them on the blog but now and again there is one that really stands out and needs to be shared.

Business Branding Photography, SalisburyBusiness Branding Photography, SalisburyBusiness branding photography for websites and social media images.

This recent commercial photoshoot with violinist Lucy Pelger is one that I really wanted to share. It’s a perfect example of how avoiding the traditional corporate portrait style of photography and taking a more lifestyle approach can really allow the passion of the owner and personality of the business to shine through in the images. Of course there are some businesses that need more formal portraits and I’m more than happy to shoot these too but I do love the opportunity to really get to understand a business and get creative with their photography.

Business Headshot Photographer, WiltshireBusiness Headshot Photographer, WiltshireNatural and relaxed portraits for business owners in Wiltshire and surrounding areas

Business Portrait Photography, WitshireBusiness Portrait Photography, WitshireRelaxed and natural business portraits in Salisbury, Wiltshire and surrounding areas. Lucy contacted me when she was new to the area and needed some images for the business she was about to launch. I like to take the time to really understand my clients businesses and it soon became apparent that it was important to Lucy that her images not only showed her passion for music but were also more personal and showed her as the warm and friendly person she is. As well as a series of relaxed portraits with and without her violin we decided that to including Lucy’s daughter in the photoshoot would really add the personal feel that we decided was important.

NAtural Business portraits, Salisbury, WiltshireNAtural Business portraits, Salisbury, WiltshireCommercial photography for small business owners in Salisbury, Wiltshire and surrounding areas Commercial photography in Salisbury, Witshire.Commercial photography in Salisbury, Witshire.Commercial photography for business owners. Commercial photographer in Salisbury, Witshire.Commercial photographer in Salisbury, Witshire.Commercial photography services for business owners in the South West of England

As you have probably gathered from the images Lucy is a music teacher. She teaches people of all ages but is especially keen to encourage a love of music in younger people and it certainly looks like her daughter is following in her footsteps!

What story do your businesses images tell? If you'd like to refresh your online presence and inject some personality into your imagery why not get in touch, I'd love to have a chat about how I can help.

You can always see more portraits in my commercial gallery 

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Berkshire Salisbury Salisbury Photographer Wiltshire bespoke business branding photoshoot business headshot photography business photography business portrait photography commercial commercial photography commercial photography Wiltshire portrait wiltshire Mon, 08 May 2017 10:49:28 GMT
Wiltshire Commercial Headshot Photography - Why Your Image Matters Getting Your Business In Front Of The Camera - And Why You Shouldn't Use A "Selfie".

For every business owner there comes a time when they need to put themselves in front of a camera. Whether it’s for the About Page on your website, your LinkedIn account or your Facebook and Twitter profiles, it’s impossible to avoid that need for an image.

But do you really need a professional photographer?

After all when you post a “selfie” on Facebook you get such a lot of likes, and so many people comment to say what a great photo it is. So why not just crop out your friends and family from the picture and use it for your business profile?

The harsh reality is that those people who say “great photo” aren’t really commenting on your camera skills, they are just pleased to see you having a great time. Those people who click like, at best they like that you look happy, in reality you probably just popped in their feed and they clicked that button and moved on to the next post hardly even noticing your picture.

So those likes and comments aren’t really an endorsement of your skills as a photographer and yet it saddens me to see so many business owners using exactly this sort of picture to represent their business. It saddens me not because I’m potentially missing out on business but because these business owners are not giving themselves the best chance of success.

If you happen to be in need of an accountant or solicitor who are you most likely trust, the one with a Linkedin profile picture from a night out with friends or the one with a well-lit headshot where they look professional and approachable? Most people will instinctively trust the one with the professional photo.

The same applies to any sort of business, whilst a corporate looking headshot may not be right for your business, a professional commercial or environmental portrait shows prospective customers that you take your business seriously. Not only does it build trust but it also helps you stand apart from all the other similar businesses that have settled for a quick phone snap.

So how do you know what sort of portrait will be suitable for your business?

Below there’s a quick guide and some examples to help you decide what is most appropriate to attract your ideal customers to your brand. Better still why not give me a call, I’d be happy to have a chat about your business and give you some guidance on portrait styles.

Business Headshots

These are usually just head and shoulders but the same style also works for a three-quarter body shot. They will generally use a plain background, often white, and some form of photographic lighting. These are well suited to professional businesses and businesses that require a number of staff to be photographed in a consistent style. They are great for corporate brochures and “meet the team” boards often found in reception areas.

Business Headshot photographer in Salisbury, WiltshireBusiness Headshot photographer in Salisbury, WiltshireProfessional business headshots, Wiltshire, Hampshire, London and surroundings

Commercial Portraits

Although these can also be head and shoulder shots they often include more of the body, they could be a three-quarter shot or maybe someone sitting at a desk or in a chair. Generally a photographic background won’t be used but a location will be chosen where the background isn’t a distraction, these portraits may use photographic lighting or natural light. These are a less formal than a headshot but can still portray a professional image, they are often used on an About Page of a website to give a friendly and approachable feel to a business.

Commercial portrait photography WiltshireCommercial portrait photography WiltshireProfessional business portrait photography in Wiltshire, Hampshire and London Wiltshire commercial portrait photographyWiltshire commercial portrait photography Business Portrait Photography in WiltshireBusiness Portrait Photography in WiltshireProfessional business portrait photography in Salisbury and surrounding areas

Environmental Portraits

These are the least formal portrait type but are every bit as worthwhile as the others. These portraits will include more of the surroundings, they are often unposed and can be documentary in style. They may well use available light although sometimes additional light will be needed. They are often taken in the working environment and are used to tell the story of a business. Environmental portraits are particularly suited to creative businesses but work equally well for any business that wants to tell an added story with their portraits.

Environmental business portrait photography SalisburyEnvironmental business portrait photography SalisburyBusiness branding photography, Wilstshire and surrounding areas Environmental portraits Salisbury, WiltshireEnvironmental portraits Salisbury, WiltshireEnvironmental portrait photographer based in Wiltshire Environmental portrait photography for Wiltshire business ownersEnvironmental portrait photography for Wiltshire business owners

If you feel your business photos aren't creating the best impression please get in touch via the Contact Page, I'd love to chat about creating images that will really help your business stand out.

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Business Commercial Environmental for Owners Photographer Photography Portrait Salisbury Wiltshire Tue, 31 Jan 2017 10:00:00 GMT
Commercial Photography - Is It Time To Make Your Business Eye Catching? Will 2017 Be The Year You Make Your Business Stand Out From The Crowd?

PR and Fashion PhotographyPR and Fashion PhotographyCommercial photography services, PR Photography, Headshots, Business Portraits, Product Photography. Salisbury, Wiltshire. London. Hampshire & Berkshire.


Although we are only in December like lots of business owners my thoughts have already turned to the New Year. I’m always excited by the start of a New Year, it’s a great time to really look at the business and give it a good “spring clean” ready for the year ahead.

Commercial Shoot Pinewood Lodge, Poole, DorsetCommercial Shoot Pinewood Lodge, Poole, DorsetCommercial photography services, PR Photography, Headshots, Business Portraits, Product Photography. Salisbury, Wiltshire. London. Hampshire & Berkshire.

I look at every area of my business with a critical eye, my branding, my website, my business cards etc. and I decide which areas are ready to be refreshed and updated. Next I ask myself whether I have the skillset to do that update myself and whether it’s a good way to use my time. If I find myself saying no to either of these questions it’s time to outsource that work to an expert and spend my time in a way that has more benefit to the business. I would highly recommended that every business has a spring clean, it really helps you start off the year feeling like you are heading in the right direction. Even if you aren’t able spring clean everything you’d like to you can get a plan in place for the rest of year!

It’s really exciting time to be a business owner, as the internet and social media help to create more and more opportunities we really are in an age where anyone can start and run a business of their own. And every year more people decide that having their own business is a path they want to pursue.

business portrait photographerbusiness portrait photographerCommercial photography services, PR Photography, Headshots, Business Portraits, Product Photography. Salisbury, Wiltshire. London. Hampshire & Berkshire.

But with that wonderful world of possibility comes a downside. If anyone can start a business, and so many people are doing, how on earth can you stand out from the crowd?

The answer is simple. By using quality images that showcase your business, match your brand and tell your story.

Attention spans are dwindling, we make almost instant decisions whether we find online content appealing enough to carry on reading or whether to move straight onto the next thing that is clamouring for our attention. Whether we are aware of it or not out attention is drawn to pictures ahead of text. If the picture grabs a reader’s attention they are more likely to carry on and read the rest of the post, click on the link or visit other pages on a website. If the picture is a poor quality uninspiring snap it’s highly likely that you will lose the reader within the first 2 or 3 seconds.

Alongside the shortening of attention spans we’ve had an explosion in mobile technology that has put a great camera in everyone’s pocket. And there’s a great temptation to use it, to take a quick selfie to use on your about page, to snap your latest product for your online shop. After all that’s what everyone else seems to be doing these days, isn’t it? Yes it is, it’s exactly what everyone else is doing. And that makes it really easy to stand out by choosing to use high quality, bespoke imagery.

business headshot portraits salisbury and wiltshirebusiness headshot portraits salisbury and wiltshireProfessional commercial portrait photography to reflect the branding of the business. Commercial photography services, PR Photography, Headshots, Business Portraits, Product Photography. Salisbury, Wiltshire. London. Hampshire & Berkshire.

This is where I come in, I can help you with your own business spring cleaning. By taking time to get to know you and understand your business I can create a portfolio of high quality, bespoke images that reflect your brand values and your business personality. Whether you need business portraits, product images, storytelling images or a combination of all these I can work with you to ensure that your images make you stand out from the crowd on your website and social media.

Lifestyle product photographyBranding & storytelling photography for websites and social mediaCommercial photography services, PR Photography, Headshots, Business Portraits, Product Photography. Salisbury, Wiltshire. London. Hampshire & Berkshire. Lifestyle product photographyBranding & storytelling photography for websites and social mediaCommercial photography services, PR Photography, Headshots, Business Portraits, Product Photography. Salisbury, Wiltshire. London. Hampshire & Berkshire.

Because I’m so passionate about the idea of business spring cleaning and because I’d love to help you make your business stand out I’m offering 50% extra images with any of my commercial photography packages booked during January or February.

If you are ready to make your business stand out in 2017 please call me  on 07548 219047 or send a message via the Contact Page. I only have a limited number of commercial photoshoots available on this offer so please reserve yours as soon as possible.



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Berkshire Business Branding Photography Business Headshots Commercial Photography Commercial Photography London Food Photography Hampshire Salisbury Photographer Wiltshire Mon, 12 Dec 2016 10:00:00 GMT
Because We Are Here, Remembering the Somme in Salisbury #wearehere

In Salisbury on July 1st 2016 the Somme was remembered 

How would you feel if you were asked to photograph an event that was going to make the whole of the country stop and think, stop and remember?

Well I was asked, and it was an honour and a privilege to be a very small part of an incredible "living memorial" 

Below tells you more about the whole project, those involved and the story behind the concept, please take the time to read.

In the mean time, please enjoy some of the images that I captured during the day, I've picked just a few, so if you'd like to see more you can see the full collection on my website, please use the password wearehere 

You can download a low res image for free, or if you'd like to purchase a full res image (£3 each) £1 from very file ordered will be donated to the Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund and £1 will be donated to The British Legion - being ex RAF, both charities mean a lot to me, they continue to help forces families all over the UK.

Please note that if you are viewing this on a mobile device, the slide show might not work automatically and you'll have to scroll through the images.


Thousands of volunteers take part in UK-wide work by Jeremy Deller to commemorate the centenary of the Somme

Thousands of volunteers took part in a UK-wide event today, 1 July 2016, as a modern memorial to mark the centenary of the Battle of the Somme.  Commissioned by 14-18 NOW, the UK’s arts programme for the First World War centenary, the work was conceived and created by Turner Prize-winning artist Jeremy Deller in collaboration with Rufus Norris, Director of the National Theatre.


‘we’re here because we’re here saw some 1400 voluntary participants dressed in First World War uniform appear unexpectedly in locations across the UK. 27 organisations collaborated on the event, which was produced by Birmingham Repertory Theatre and the National Theatre, working in close collaboration with partners including: Lyric Theatre Belfast, Manchester Royal Exchange, National Theatre of Scotland, National Theatre Wales, Northern Stage, Playhouse Derry-Londonderry, Salisbury Playhouse, Sheffield Theatres and Theatre Royal Plymouth.


The project breaks new ground in terms of its scale, breadth, reach and the number of partners and participants involved. This is the first time the three national theatres have worked together on a joint project, and the first time so many theatres have worked together on a UK-wide participation project.


The participants who walked the streets today were a reminder of the 19,240 men who were killed on 1 July 1916, the first day of the Battle of the Somme.  Each participant represented an individual soldier who was killed on that day. The work is partly inspired by tales of sightings during and after the First World War by people who believed they had seen a dead loved one.


The participants wore historically accurate uniforms, representing 15 of the regiments that suffered losses in the first day of the Battle. The soldiers did not speak, but at points throughout the day would sing the song ‘we’re here because we’re here’ to the tune of Auld Lang Syne, which was sung in the trenches during the First World War. They handed out cards to members of the public with the name and regiment of the soldier they represented, and, where known, the age of the soldier when he died on 1 July 1916.


The daylong work ran from 7am to 7pm and covered the width and breadth of the UK, from Shetland to Plymouth. Sites they visited included shopping centres, train stations, beaches, car parks and high streets – taking the memorial to contemporary Britain and bringing an intervention into people’s daily lives where it was least expected.

The volunteers were men aged between 16-52, reflecting the men who would have fought in the Somme. They were not trained actors but come from a range of professions, including a sheep farmer, flight attendant, doctor, lawyer, social worker, shop assistant, portrait artist and GCSE student. They came together to rehearse in theatres across the UK over a month-long period in the run-up to the performance.  ‘we’re here because we’re here’ is one of the largest arts participation projects ever staged in the UK, with hundreds of additional volunteers working behind the scenes.


Jeremy Deller said:

"I wanted to make a contemporary memorial to mark the centenary of the Battle of the Somme, one that moved around the UK with an unpredictability in which the participants took the work directly to the public.”

Rufus Norris, Director of the National Theatre, said:

“This work by Jeremy Deller is a truly national piece of theatre and is a powerful way to remember the men who went off to fight 100 years ago. I also hope it will serve as a catalyst to strengthen ties with theatres and communities across the UK.”

Jenny Waldman, Director of 14-18 NOW, said:

"1 July 1916 saw 57,470 casualties on the first day of the Battle of the Somme, of whom nearly 20,000 died: it was the bloodiest day in British military history. Taking part in 'we're here because we're here' has given hundreds of young people across the UK the chance to find out more about the Somme, and in some cases discover the stories of family members who fought in the war. Working alongside brilliant artists, directors and theatres on this astonishing project will be an experience they will never forget."

Stuart Rogers, Executive Director at Birmingham Repertory Theatre, said:

“It has been a huge privilege and joy for The REP to work with the National Theatre to deliver Jeremy Deller's extraordinary vision for this event. It has had a dramatic impact both on the hundreds of participants and on the millions of people it has reached, reminding us all in a very powerful and unique way of the tragedy of the Battle of the Somme and conflict in general.”

The project was supported by: Aberystwyth Arts Centre, The Belgrade Theatre, Bolton Octagon, Bristol Old Vic, Storyhouse, Left Coast, Leicester Curve, Nuffield Theatre, Oldham Coliseum, Pontio, Shetland Arts, Sutton Coldfield College BMet, The Artrix Bromsgrove, The Garrick Lichfield and Volcano.

Media partner: BBC

we’re here because we’re here’ was made possible by an Ambition for Excellence Award from Arts Council England and by the Heritage Lottery Fund, with additional support from Paul Hamlyn Foundation, Creative Scotland and Art Fund. 14-18 NOW is principally funded by the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund and Arts Council England, and by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.


Jeremy Deller and Rufus Norris will discuss ‘we’re here because we’re here’ at the Dorfman Theatre, National Theatre on Monday 11 July at 6pm. 

Tickets on sale via the NT Box Office (020) 7452 3000 and online at


]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) #wearehere 14-18 Now Battle of the Somme PR Salisbury Salisbury Playhouse Somme Somme100 because we are here event photography journalism soldiers wiltshire Sun, 03 Jul 2016 23:11:38 GMT
Wiltshire Silk Painting Artist Wiltshire Silk Painting Artist


Commercial photo shoot of Wiltshire based Diana Kisirauskiene Silks by DianaDiana Kisirauskiene Silks by DianaProcess photography of how Diana designs and creates a silk design. Based in Swindon, Diana works on her own to create bespoke hand made silk painted scarlves and cushion covers


One of the most exciting things about being a commercial photographer is Wiltshire is the amazing hidden talents you come across when you least expect it...

Let me introduce you to Diana, a wonderfully talented artist based in Swindon, Wiltshire.


Designer Silks by DianaCommercial photo shoot of Wiltshire based Diana Kisirauskiene Silks by Diana


Diana is originally from Lithuania. But came to the UK in 2011.

She was inspired by the oriental silk painters. Her teacher Ele Tamasauskiene. Fuelled her passion for this medium and loaned her a beautiful book that to this day still inspires her art and paintings.


Commercial photo shoot of Wiltshire based Diana Kisirauskiene Silks by DianaDiana's source of inspiration for her designsDiana finds inspiration for her designs from books, calendars, paintings, oriental and the internet, Pinterest


Diana turned her passion into a beautiful business creating bespoke, hand painted silk scarves. She has since gone on to create bolero style wraps and tunics, tops, pictures, hanging wall scrolls, ties, curtains.

I visited Diana where she works and photographed her as she showed me what inspired her, how she is influenced by nature and how she turned this into pieces of art that can be worn.

There is a whole set of skills and techniques to preparing the silk ready to be painted. Stretching the material in frames that hold it rigid, this is accomplished with special pin grips called Frames pins or with delicate hooks that hold it in place but does no damage to the final piece.


Commercial photo shoot of Wiltshire based Diana Kisirauskiene Silks by DianaPreparing the silk for paintingDiana uses frames to stretch out the silk ready for painting, then draws on her tempted design


The design for the piece is added as a delicate outline in pencil. Sometimes a piece is so detailed, or it is going on a big piece of silk, it needs to be drawn on to a paper template that she then traces over; other times she draws freehand. Her pencil marks are confident and sure, showing her innate skill for art; it's a pleasure to watch.

There are many styles to use with silk painting. Defining an edge for a design Diana uses water based gutta. Which when dried creates a barrier to stop the inks from bleeding into areas that she needs to be different.



Other ways for adding definition includes a clear barrier that once completes allows the original colour of the silk to come through, not unlike water colour painters using masking fluid.



One of the beautiful things to know about Diana is that she, like a traditional artist, mixes her own colours from raw minerals. They come in powered form and are mixed with hot water. The intensity of the colour can be intensified or diluted with the amount of water used.



The time I spent with Diana today makes me feel like we only scratched the surface of the possibilities her skills. 

Each scarf takes on average 30 hours to make, some of the more detailed/larger pieces can take closer to 60 hours - it is a true labour of love and you know that she puts her heart and soul into her work. 

I'm very excited to be photographing Diana and she shows me the different levels of her work, from the very basic, to the intermediate, to the fully detailed and intricate work that can go into one of her most requested designs. I look forward to sharing this journey with you throughout the year.


Diana Kisirauskiene Silks by DianaDiana Kisirauskiene Silks by DianaProcess photography of how Diana designs and creates a silk design. Based in Swindon, Diana works on her own to create bespoke hand made silk painted scarlves and cushion covers


Price is obviously dependant on design, with each scarf being hand crafted it comes down to the design as well as the amount of detail and therefore time it takes to create. If you wish to find out more, including costs, please contact Diana directly through her website Designer Silks By Diana

Please be inspired by this photo story, and check out her website to see more of her designs and commissions. 

You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. If you want to see what inspires her then follow her on Pinterest.


​If you know any Wiltshire based artisans who are keeping old skills alive please let me have their details. I want to tell more stories like Diana's and she with you the hidden treasures in Wiltshire


]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Diana Editorial PR Wiltshire art bespoke commercial commercial photographer commercial photography photography silk silks by Diana story telling Wed, 20 Apr 2016 09:36:18 GMT
Are We Losing Our Memories What are we risking?


get it framed !It's important to get pictures off the computer and into print


I wanted to share with you a wonderful piece my husbands aunt sent to me this week and it really resonated. 

It's a piece from The Times newspaper that talks about the fact we live in a world where we can potential lose our memories. It resonated because as a photographer I am constantly asked if I'll sell the digital files to my clients, and although I now do this, in my heart I wish they would purchase a physical photograph, something framed that they can hang on their walls and revisit the memory of every time they see it. Or a memory album that tells a bigger picture of a special time that they cherish. 

I hope this inspires you to print your photos, stop leaving them on discs that can corrupt, and computers than might break, or USB's that can get lost. 

Thanks to the digital age we’re all losing our memory

THE Russian Federal Guard Service, the body given the task of protecting the country’s top officials, recently invested in 20 old-fashioned portable typewriters. These were to be used to ensure that documents of a particularly sensitive nature would not be written electronically and stored digitally, but typed out by hand and then filed away. 

The message was clear and as old as writing itself: if you want to preserve something, write it on paper and then put it somewhere safe.
The digital age was supposed to render obsolete the traditional ways of preserving the past. Everything written, recorded, filmed or photographed could now be safeguarded for ever at the push of a button. No more filing, storage or dusty archives: the present would be captured and the past curated by the machines themselves. Increased computer power and ever-expanding digital storage would ensure infinite memory-retention, an end to forgetting.
The reality has proved very different. Digital memory has proven fragile, evanescent and only too easy to lose. Technology has moved on so fast that the tools used to access stored material have become obsolete: CD-roms degrade, tapes crumble, hard disks fall apart; the laser disk and the floppy disk have gone, soon to be followed, no doubt, by the USB and memory card. I have half a novel, written 20 years ago on what was then a cutting edge Amstrad and “saved” on a 3.5in disk. I will never know how unreadable it really is, because I now have no way to read it.
As the internet pioneer Vint Cerf warned recently, the disappearance of hardware needed to read old media means we are “nonchalantly throwing all of our data into what could become a digital black hole”. In 1986, the BBC Domesday project set out to record the economic, social and cultural state of Britain on 12in videodiscs. Today, those disks cannot be read, unlike the Domesday Book itself, written a thousand years earlier.
The internet will carry more data this year than was created in the entire 20th century — some 330 petabytes, or enough capacity to transfer every character of every book ever published 20 times over — but our descendants may be unable to read it.
Quite apart from the technical inaccessibility of the past, the assumption of digital permanence has eroded the habit of archival hoarding. Earlier generations wrote letters, diaries, postcards and notes, on paper, stored them, and forgot them. Who archives their emails, let alone texts, tweets, or posts?
We blithely assume that these are being preserved somewhere, when most are simply evaporating into the ether. The old-fashioned photo album has given way to the digital photo-file — as prone to sudden wipe-out and technical obsolescence as every other “saved” electronic artefact. The images of your grandparents may be better preserved than those of your grandchildren.
What looks like never-ending growth on the internet is really a form of endless decay. The average lifespan of a web page is 44 days. Pages are constantly being updated, overwritten, shifted or left to expire in the process known as “reference rot”. We may lecture our children that anything posted on the net will be there for ever, but in fact it’s true of very little on this strange, unstable, ephemeral medium.
A web page link that leads only to a “page not found” message encapsulates the transitory nature of digital data: solid information that has shifted into nothingness, with no clue to where it has gone.
Historians looking back on our time will face a mighty challenge, with a patchy digital record and a culture lulled into believing that the past is being preserved every time the save button is pressed.
Bizarrely, despite the vastly larger flood of daily information, we may end up knowing more about the beginning of the 20th century than we will know about the start of the 21st.
The world is waking up to the danger of collective memory loss. Cerf has called for the creation of “digital vellum”, technology that can take a digital snapshot, at the time of storage, of all the processes needed to read it at later date. The British Library now routinely gathers information from millions of public websites as well as tweets and Facebook entries, to create a constant, rolling record of the digital present. The American Library of Congress is archiving the whole of Twitter.
Immediately after the Charlie Hebdo massacre in Paris, the Bibliotheque Nationale de France set out to gather the rolling digital story and the web response — media reportage, public reaction, blogs, Twitter, online commentary — to create a genuine digital archive of the moment.
A similar shift in attitude towards digital preservation is needed in the wider culture. Psychological studies show that people who gather evidence of their own lives are happier and more self-confident.
Just as our grandparents hoarded the physical evidence of their worlds, so we should print out the photographs, preserve the emails, write, cut, paste, and print the stories, memories and relics of our own lives and times, and put them all in the attic.
Thankfully, as the Russians know, a machine has already been invented that can solve the problem of digital impermanence: the typewriter.
The Times



Barbara Leatham Photography is based in the small village of Tilshead in the middle of the Salisbury Plains in Wiltshire. Specialising in lifestyle family photography, excellent commercial photography for small to medium businesses and beautiful weddings in and around Wiltshire, Berkshire, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, London and the rest of the UK. Barbara also teaches photography and runs some workshops for beginners, enthusiasts and amateur photographers

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Digital Loosing photos The Times loosing memories losing digital files memories photos salisbury wiltshire Wed, 11 Mar 2015 12:29:01 GMT
Spring cleaning your business Spring Cleaning Your Business


Spring time in WiltshireSigns of Spring time in the village of Tilshead in Salisbury, Wiltshire

Time to dust off the old to make way for the new

I'm lucky to live in the beautiful county of Wiltshire, in the heart of the Salisbury Plains, but even for me the winter months can be a drag. All business owners will usually have been marketing and working hard in the lead up to Christmas and then it's like one big sigh when it's all over. Sometimes getting back into work mode in the New Year can seem like a real trudge. 

I'm sure that with the shorter days and the lack of warm sunshine we are more inclined to want to curl up with a good book and some hot chocolate, and then hibernate until the Spring.

Well Spring seems to be truly showing it's beautiful face, finally. The days are getting longer, the temperatures are warming bit by bit, and the flowers are sharing their beauty with us and reminding us that there is new life on the way.

Without fail, waking up on a glorious sun filled Spring day I get the urge to blitz the house. Freshen everything up, embracing the energy that seems to come from the day. A house that's been sitting idle and cosy for the Winter months always needs a quick spritz to bring it back to life...

... and your business is no different.


So, how do you Spring Clean your business?

In my case it's a time to trawl through the office and clear out anything that hasn't moved for six months, if it's been sat still for that long I can't really need it. I also go through and clear up the folders on my computer, the longest and most boring job ever, BUT.... when I go back to my computer and it's all organised and looking tidy I feel ready to take on new challenges, it's one of life's little victories that makes me feel good inside even though no one else knows it's happened.

I also go through the images on my website. You'll be amazed how the year(s) can pass and people never think to do this. I know for certain that the business I was running this time last year will have evolved and moved forward, so it stands to reason that my website, my electronic shop-window to the world, needs to reflect where I am and what I am doing now.

Ask yourself, when was the last time you reviewed your website? Does it do the job you want it to? Does it address the needs of your customers and does it represent the service or products you provide? Knowing how important good images are to any business, what are your images saying about yours? Does your business portrait look like you? Are you using out of date images or ones where the styling looks dated because the fashions have changed and although you've addresses it in the work place your online presence has taken a back seat...?

How important is it to look as individual as your business is?

I think it's very important. Brand awareness and how you present your business is one of the things that distinguishes us from everyone else. Having the right wording and the right images that are presented in the right way all help towards engaging with our clients.


Tea roses in tea cups at Gullicks FloristWindow display for Mothers Day this Spring at Gullicks Florists in Salisbury, Wiltshire


So a few things to do while you're motivated to do your Business Spring Clean.

  • Ask others to help you. One or two trusted people who know your business well, get them to go through your website and find fault. If they can find it so can your customers. Make sure you fix any faults, don't leave them thinking it's not making a difference, it will if you ignore them.
  • Invest in professional images that are personal to your branding. Stock images are great, but others can buy them too. They can date quickly, or look too generic - especially if you are a new business that is evolving and finding your feet quickly. It's easy to do a website that will "do for now so I've got a presence online" but as your business grows you need to review your online world and make sure it's in sync with everything else.
    Working with a professional photographer that understands your business and can reflect it in top quality imagery will make a big difference.
  • Make sure that your commercial portrait is true to you. Using a holiday snap or one that "will do for now" is never good business sense. Ask yourself how you respond to someones image, we are all guilty of judging quickly when we see a photo of someone, good or bad it stays with us even before we have spoken to them.
    Your image should reflect your personality as well as the position you hold in your business, and it should showcase your business too. It's not just about having a head shot; commercial portraits can be environmentally based, it's not all about being "suited and booted".
  • Get inspired! See what is trending in the fashion industry (Pantone always release the colours for the seasons that are coming and they are trend setters for anything related to fashion). Find ways to make this work for your business. Whether it's styling of your products, or the styling of you. Be on trend somewhere so that people can see that you are aware of the world around you and not stuck in a rut.
  • Check out the films that are coming in the year, they are also trend setters, but usually hit the high street the following year (think of The Great Gatsby and how that has influenced trends).
  • Set some goals for the year. Imagine that you had to write a review on December 31st of this year, what would it say about everything you have achieved? These become your goals, all you need to do then is set some time frames and make it happen.
  • If you're feeling flat after the festivities of the season, then it's a great time to get out and about networking and meeting new people. Getting your mojo back is all part of it.

My final thoughts...

It's really hard if you are running a business on your own, I know because I've been doing it for years now. Keeping motivated when things are quiet as well as exploring new ways to reinvent the wheel takes a lot of mojo energy. It's important to book time in the diary to reflect and review. Just imagine that the Spring Clean of your business is an extended version of this. Don't feel guilty about taking the time you need, it will pay dividends in the end.


Commercial PortraitsEnvironmental and commercial professional portraits


If you are feeling inspired and think that new imagery for your business is something you want to talk more about then please get in touch. I have some great packages that are concise and cost effective. I offer options for new businesses as well as existing ones, you can find more details on my commercial pages.
And if you are looking to update your Commercial Portrait then please get in touch. I'd be delighted to help you create some unique, bespoke and beautiful images that capture you and your work.


Barbara Leatham Photography is based in the small village of Tilshead in the middle of the Salisbury Plains in Wiltshire. Specialising in lifestyle family photography, excellent commercial photography for small to medium businesses and beautiful weddings in and around Wiltshire, Berkshire, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, London and the rest of the UK. Barbara also teaches photography and runs some workshops for beginners, enthusiasts and amateur photographers


]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Berkshire Dorset Hampshire Wiltshire bespoke commercial commercial photography commercial portraits fashion lifestyle photography trends unique Thu, 05 Mar 2015 11:06:21 GMT
Choosing Your Wedding Photographer How Do You Choose Your Wedding Photographer?


New Jersey weddingMy first international wedding in New Jersey, America, USA by Wiltshire wedding photographer Barbara Leatham


What have I learned over the years?

I've learned that on this one special day of your life, your photographs are going to be one of the few things what will still be around long after the confetti has been swept up, the cake has been eaten and the flowers have faded. You really want to make sure that your photographer is going to capture your day in a way that resonates with you.

So how do you choose the best photographer for your day?

Well it's not easy, for many there's a budget involved; no doubt there will have been much researching online, deciding on what can be afforded as well as what is included in the price; but there's much more to finding your ideal photographer than this. For example, do you like their style? Do you like them?

The last question may possibly be one of the most important. Like any relationship that brings people together, be it business or personal, the magic happens when you all get on together.

As a photographer, asking your bride and groom to trust you comes from empathy and understanding them and they you. You are being invited to be part of their day - and not just any day - it's the day they are sharing with family and friends; and although you are there to deliver a service, you also find that you often become a friend to them, supporting them in the lead up to their big day as well as on the day, and often afterwards.

We are often privy to the most intense moments so trust is very important.

Here are some other things that I think couples should think about when choosing their photographer

  • Most professional photographers offer or include an "engagement shoot" also known as a "pre wedding shoot" which is an ideal time to get used to being in front of your photographers camera.
  • They usually always have a gallery of pictures on their website, but often these can be the "very best" or even images taken during photography training days and may not give you a true idea of a full day of images.
    I always offer to give the password to recent weddings I have done so that a couple can get a good idea of the coverage I give. Make sure you ask your photographer about this.
  • Talking to previous couples. I always ask my bride and grooms if they are happy for me to pass on their contact details to future couples.
    Testimonials are wonderful for a photographer to have, but there's nothing quite like talking to someone who has been in front of your preferred photographers camera on their big day to give you a good indication of what it might be like for you.
  • Make sure you meet face to face. I love to meet with my couples, whenever possible, over a coffee/tea so we can have a good chat.
    Getting to talk to your photographer, especially if you are booking with a studio that has many photographers is essential. You need to know who you will be trusting with your special day. This is the time when you'll start to get a feel about how well you'll gel on your day.
  • If in doubt, meet with them again before you book them. But likewise, if you know instantly that they aren't the photographer for you then tell them. There are only so many days in the year and while a photographer is holding a day for you they may loose another enquiry. Of course we are always disappointed when a couple choose someone else, but it's harder when we don't hear back at all.
  • Make sure they are insured. Seriously important that they are covered.
  • Do they have a network of reliable professional photographers? Should the worse ever happen and they can't cover your day can they make sure that you are not without a photographer?
  • Do they have back up equipment? A simple question, but if you are trusting your day to someone with just one camera and one card then you are taking a big risk should something fail to work on the day. Unlike a portrait shoot where a booking can be rescheduled your wedding day is a once in a life time event.
  • How booked up are they, are they shooting back to back weddings? Can they give you the time and energy they need to on your day to deliver the best images they can for you?

Choosing the wrong photographer can cost a lot, and I'm not talking about the financial aspect, although this is important


Do you get what you pay for??

Often the answer is yes. You have to remember that the actual cost of getting married is quite inexpensive. Going to a registry office or even a church, without the luxury of a dress, the suit(s), the reception, flowers, favours and yes, even the photography, you can get married to the person of your dreams for a really good price. But I think that we all want to share our day and then we want it to look beautiful when we do, and finally we want someone to record it for prosperity. All of these cost and you have to decide where you invest your hard earned money.

I always tell a couple to invest in three things

  • Your wedding rings. You wear these for the rest of your life, make them something you truly love and cherish
  • The bridal underwear. Invest in something beautiful that makes your feel like a queen every time you wear it, even if it's just under your comfy joggers.
  • Your photography. Remember that a good professional photographer can make your wedding look amazing no matter where else you try to keep the costs down.


Be realistic about your budget, on average the cost of a UK wedding is now £20,000. The average professional wedding photographer charges £2,000 upwards. But they will have invested in good quality equipment, professional photography training, business insurance and will have vast experience with difficult situations that they can master.

I hope that this has been useful to you. With over 20 years of experience I've heard so many heart breaking stories of couples who have been let down because they choose someone without researching. But with a few choice questions, like those I've suggested here, in your pocket you should find it less likely to happen to you.


If you are getting married in the future and would like to talk to me about your special day then please get in touch, there's always time for a chat, so please include your phone number and a good time to call you. You can always find more details about the services I offer on my Wedding Page



Barbara Leatham Photography is based in the small village of Tilshead in the middle of the Salisbury Plains in Wiltshire. Specialising in lifestyle family photography, beautiful weddings and excellent commercial photography for small to medium businesses in Wiltshire, Berkshire, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, London and the rest of the UK. Barbara also teaches photography and runs some workshops for beginners, enthusiasts and amateur photographers

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Berkshire Dorset Hampshire Salisbury Warminster Wedding Wedding photographer Wiltshire Wilton Wiltshire wedding photographer Dorset wedding photographer Hampshire wedding photographer Warminster wedding photography Wed, 11 Feb 2015 15:48:33 GMT
Photographing Children Hints and Tips Salisbury Lifestyle Photographer Barbara Leatham Taking Better Photos of Your Children

taking better photos of childrenMy top tips for taking better photos of your own children

Do you ever get frustrated and want to take better photos of your children?

Isn’t it funny that many people automatically think that I must have amazing photos of my children all the time, and sometimes, when the kids are in the right frame of mind, occasionally I can get great shots, other times they treat it like the plague and I've more chance of photographing the lesser-known spotted pink monkey. 

If you're the kind of parent I am, you see your children doing stuff all the time that you think would make such a great picture, but when you take a "snap" and look at the image are you disappointed with what you see? You won't believe it but I have days like that too - seriously. After all, my kids seem to have radar for when I've got my camera in my hand. Then it's a 50/50 chance whether they let me get my shot.

Over the years I've learned a few "tactical" skills on how to capture my own children so I thought I'd put together my top tips for you in the hopes that you can get better pictures too.

1. Don't make it obvious

So you see your kids doing something and you quickly grab your camera....

.....don't call them to look over to catch their attention instead let them carry on what they are doing get your first shot, then assuming they still aren't noticing, get in closer and take more. There's a chance now that they might have seen you, that's when you can get them to "look this way".
Sometimes the detail photos are as important, so don't feel that you have to get the big picture when the little pictures can all add up to tell a bigger story.

2. Actually create your own shoot.

Get the kids to make a den in the garden, or go for an adventure in the woods, stage a reason to take some photos. Kids aren't good at standing and posing, they are much better if you give them something to do, the chances are they will want to show off a little, but if they are engaged in something they will mind the camera less.

3. Watch for the light

Most of the time images can look bad because we aren't looking where the light is coming from. Our eyes read a scene refocusing and reading the light a gazillion times a second; our brains can compute that information rapidly, cameras just don't work that way. Without going into the science, they don't have the range to get details we see with our own eyes. If you are at home, or in a building you need to give yourself the best possible chance so put yourself between the light and what you are photographing so the light is on the subject.  It is important to note that you should never ask people to look into the sun or a bright light source.

4. Be prepared

For anything - and I'm not just talking about having your camera ready just in case a photo opportunity comes along, I'm assuming you'd do that anyway. Sometimes to get the images I want I have to hand my camera over to my kids so they can take a photo of me, fair is fair after all. Sometimes I have to be prepared to act the fool, or to lie on the floor to get a better angle, or to get a little dirty. Mostly I just get philosophical, clothes can go in the wash and I can get a bath, but if I'm prepared to do something then the chances are they'll be prepared to do something in return.

5. Have fun

The most important thing of all, have fun. It's easy to get frustrated with our children when they don't do what you want them to, and something as simple as them looking and getting them to engage with the camera can lead to even the most qualified of photographers getting stressed and irritated. Remember that kids have a short attention span, if all you are doing is telling them to "look this way" or "smile" then they will likely get bored very quickly and not want to "play that game" for very long. So, my best advice is to have fun, engage and don't worry if you don't get the photo, it's more important to have fun, create a memory and be in the moment with them.


6. Hand over the camera to someone else.

If you are the one who always takes the photos then the chances are you are never in them. So you look back over the photos in years to come and someone says, "where were you...?" 
Most of us hide behind the camera to avoid being in the front of it, but you have to remember that part of taking these photos isn't just for us to remember, it's for our children to remember too. As much as I don't truly enjoy being in front of the camera I think my children would be more shattered should there be a day when I'm no longer here that they don't have images of us together to remember. Getting in front of the camera educates the next generation how important it is for the future.

I was once asked how important it is to have photos taken and I said off handily "oh well it's not like it's life and death" I was quite young then and I hadn't lost someone who was important to me. When I did I made sure I had every photograph I could find of them, the sad thing is that the ones of me and them together are few and far between and I can never change that now, but I can change it for my children.

So from one parent to another, even though you may not love the camera, remember that you love your children and they love you x


the importance of photosremember to be in the photos too, one day someone won't be there


Taking photos of your children is natural, whether it's on a camera or your mobile phone. If you do nothing else today, upload your images to an online photo shop and get them printed out. We live in a digital world, but having physical images that you can look through is a wonderful thing to share.


If you want to get better at taking photos, if you want to learn how to use your camera with more confidence please get in touch. I offer 1-2-1 and 2-2-1 training as well as some workshops for parents to help them set their camera up so they can focus on getting better images of their children


Barbara Leatham Photography is based in the small village of Tilshead in the middle of the Salisbury Plains in Wiltshire. Specialising in lifestyle family photography and excellent commercial photography for small to medium businesses in Wiltshire, Berkshire, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, London and the rest of the UK. Barbara also teaches photography and runs some workshops for beginners, enthusiasts and amateur photographers

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) children children's photography family family photos kids kids photographer lifestyle top tips Fri, 30 Jan 2015 14:12:47 GMT
Looking back and Looking Forward Part Two Looking forward to 2015


Autumn Sunset in Tilshead, WiltshireTaken in late autumn, this is a panoramic joiner landscape of the sunset in Tilshead, Wiltshire in 2014.


Part two

2014 has been a year for me to explore Wiltshire, Somerset, Dorset and the surrounding areas. When I'm not busy photographing commercial images, weddings and family portraits I can be found working on my personal work; these have come from days out with other artists, friends and family. Often the sunsets, sunrises and rainbow images were taken in my village (Tilshead) here in the middle of the Salisbury Plains. In fact, when you drive into the village, there's a welcome post saying "Welcome to Tilshead, the heart of the Salisbury Plains" it's so true. 

It's a privilege to wake up to stunning scenes day in and day out; even when it's grey and raining, it's truly beautiful here. I hope these images capture your heart like Wiltshire has captured mine.



Many of the images in my personal work are available to buy, you can always contact me is there's something here that inspires you and you'd like to buy as a fine art print.

Competition Images

In 2014 I entered several images into a monthly competition with The Guild of Photographers. There's 100's of entries from photographers all over the UK every single month. Images are scored out of 100 with the minimum industry standard scoring 70 points, or a Bar. Above that are Bronze, Silver and Gold. There is a Platinum but no one has ever won one of these yet, but I'm working on it. 



I'm in the process of updating my profile on The Guilds brand new website, but you can find it here

And if you haven't seen part one of this review of 2014 please take a look. It's full of portraits, weddings and commercial inspired images.

What is planned for the future?

It's been wonderful looking back on 2014, but I'm already planning for 2015.

I'm focusing hard on commercial photography this year. It's important to me to keep my skills fine tuned and focused (no pun intended). Commercial work is different, from still life to portraits, action shots to creative lighting, there's always exciting things to photograph. I want to leave businesses with beautiful images that truly represent their business.

Family work is always important to me; I always want to deliver the best images presented in beautiful products for every family I photograph, something that really shows them together.

Photography training is something that I really love doing, and last year I did more 1-2-1 and 2-2-1 training days than every before; each one was different and really heart warming. Training people allows me to pass on my skills and hopefully inspire another photographer to go on to take better pictures.

"What about weddings?" I hear you ask... it is always an honour to be asked to be part of someones special day. I've had four enquiries already since Christmas, but with only doing a few each year I won't be increasing my intake of weddings. They are intense and amazing days to be part of and I'd never want to deliver anything but my absolute best for my couples. 
I always hope for something special or unique, and this year I'm wondering if I'll finally get a handfasting ceremony - living this close to Stonehenge, it's got to happen one day.


Thank you to everyone who has been part of my journey through 2014. To my family and friends, thank you for your patience and for putting up with me talking about photography at any given moment, you're all amazing and you all make it possible for me to do what I love.

Finally to my clients, many of whom have become friends, you've allowed me to create some of my best images yet, you're all amazing, thank you x


Barbara Leatham Photography is based in the small village of Tilshead in the middle of the Salisbury Plains in Wiltshire. Specialising in lifestyle family photography and excellent commercial photography for small to medium businesses in Wiltshire, Berkshire, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, London and the rest of the UK. Barbara also teaches photography and runs some workshops for beginners, enthusiasts and amateur photographers




]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Art Fine Landscape Portraits Salisbury bespoke commercial family macro photography portrait scenic wedding wiltshire Tue, 20 Jan 2015 10:15:00 GMT
Looking back and Looking Forward Looking back on 2014

Hellebores flowersHellebore pink flowers, fine art flowers by Barbara Leatham Photography, Wiltshire

Part One

We've been in Wiltshire for two full years now, and although the business is older than this every time you move to a new place it's like starting over from scratch.

The fact that at the end of the year I feel I'm further ahead than I was the year before tells me that it is becoming a successful business in it's own little way. Not that I'm planning blazing trails or world domination (just yet) but my world is the better for being here in this beautiful county with my family around me and friends beside me.

I wanted to share some of the shoots that I've done in the last 12 months. I've split this blog into two parts, I didn't realise just how many shoots I'd done last year. So part one shares the weddings, portraits and commercial shoots and part two I will share the personal work and the images that have won me awards.

First, Wedding and Portraits. I'd like to give thanks to all my clients for trusting me with capturing their personal, intimate and important times, it's always an honour and a privilege; something I never take for granted or lightly - you were all amazing

Click the play button to start the slideshow x 



Commercial work in 2014 was incredible; varied and keeping me on my toes, these are just some of the images from the shoots last year.

All of my clients have been amazing, many call me back year after year and have become friends in the process. It's exciting to see how their businesses have evolved and it's a pleasure to be part of their journey, seeing them succeed and knowing that in a small way I've helped too.



It's been wonderful looking back on last year, but it's also exciting to look forward to this year as well. In part two I'll be revisiting some of my personal work, the images that won me awards and I'll be sharing some of my plans for 2015.

You can always contact me about any of the photography that I offer, it would be lovely to hear from you



Barbara Leatham Photography is based in the small village of Tilshead in the middle of the Salisbury Plains in Wiltshire. Specialising in lifestyle family photography and excellent commercial photography for small to medium businesses in Wiltshire, Berkshire, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, London and the rest of the UK. Barbara also teaches photography and runs some workshops for beginners, enthusiasts and amateur photographers

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) 2014 Review Salisbury commercial photography photography training photography workshops portrait revisit wedding wiltshire Wed, 14 Jan 2015 20:00:00 GMT
Scooter Rally at Ryde Scooter Rally at Ryde




The lads from The Reading Comedy MODS Scooters at Ryde by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014The lads from The Reading Comedy MODS Scooters on the sea front at Ryde in the Isle of Wight for the Scooter Rally August Bank Holiday weekend 2014

The lads from The Reading Comedy MODS Scooters at Ryde

What A Heavenly Surprise

Last week I was in the Isle of Wight to watch and support my hubby while he took part in the Isle of Wight Challenge (a small run around the Isle's coastal path, a mere 106k) 

After taking him to the start at 0730hrs I dashed back to the chalet and took the kids, and my mother-in-law, to Ryde for the morning. There has never been a day I was so grateful to have taken a camera with me. Little did I know, but there was a HUGE Scooter Rally that weekend. It was amazing. Vespa and Lambretta heaven, MODS all over the place. Every where I turned was a fabulous photo opportunity.

I stole a photo of a set of bikes that had taken up residence along the wall overlooking the sea front; then I went over to talk to the guys, my eyes lighting up when I saw they were from Reading (Berkshire) and not far from where I used to live - proof that the world is smaller every day.

My two kids were invited to sit on the bikes, and proud to say they opted to the one with the RAF Roundel flag on the back - being ex RAF I'd have had it no other way.

So here are the images from the morning; I can only wish it had been for longer than the hour I had. My sincere thanks to the gentlemen from The Reading Comedy MODS Scooters for letting my kids fall in love with their scooters and allowing me the opportunity to take the photos.


Comedy MODS Reading Branch at Ryde in the Isle of Wight by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014Comedy MODS Reading Branch at the sea front in Ryde on the Isle of Wight.

Reading Comedy MODS at the Ryde Scooter Rally August 2014 by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014Comedy MODS Reading Branch at Ryde in the Isle of Wight My son and daughter sitting one a beautiful scooter on the sea front of Ryde

Scooter details at the Ryde Scooter Rally August 2014 by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014Scooter details at the Ryde Scooter Rally August 2014. Red helmet, a hung monkey, chrome, detailed paintwork

Scooter details at the Ryde Scooter Rally August 2014 by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014Parked up on the high street, these scooters looking stunning in the sunshine. With a union flag helmet and an alternative roundel

Scooter details at the Ryde Scooter Rally August 2014 by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014Iconic classic details, Union flags, lots of lights, classic colours, fabulous scooters - Vespa, Lambretta heaven

Scooter details at the Ryde Scooter Rally August 2014 by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014This scooter is customised to the max. Serious paint work

Scooter details at the Ryde Scooter Rally August 2014 by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014Lights, paintwork, chrome, Vespa and Lambretta customised and looking fantastic in the sunshine

Scooter details at the Ryde Scooter Rally August 2014 by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014Vespa and Lambretta scooters on the promenade at Ryde on the Isle of Wight

The Ryde Scooter Rally August 2014 by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014A dapper looking gentleman on his scooter giving directions to a fellow scooterist at Ryde's Scooter Rally in the August Bank Holiday Weekend

The Ryde Scooter Rally August 2014 by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014These two battered scooters looking authentic and pretty amazing in contrast to the bikes around them - at the Ryde Scooter Rally

Scooter details at the Ryde Scooter Rally August 2014 by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014I love these details, the pale green Roundel really caught my eye, but especially the Bad Manners cartoon Ska at it's best

Scooter all lined up at the Ryde Scooter Rally August 2014 by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014These scooters were just a fraction of those riding about the Island over the three days of the Rally. Amazing to see so many all together.

Scooter details at the Ryde Scooter Rally August 2014 by Barbara Leatham Photography (c) 2014This Vespa detail is possibly my favourite of the day, a simple chrome union flag on a silver scooter, quality


I hope I get to the Isle again in the future just to have the opportunity to capture more of these amazing scooters, as well as more of the people who actually own them. It's a real culture that's thriving all over the UK and other countries, but it really comes to life when you get all of these people together.


]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Comedy Commercial Isle of Wight Lambretta MODS Photography Rally Ryde Scooter Vespa Wiltshire art Fri, 29 Aug 2014 10:44:24 GMT
Spending Time With Dad Spending Time With Dad

Precious Time



Who else has noticed that time is so busy and full of work that we almost have to book slots of time into our diaries to be parents so we can be with our children...?

I recently photographed a family, a dad with three boys, and we had the most fun. But even he was saying that juggling time for his business and time for his boys was a constant battle and it really resinated with me.

James, with his boys, Nathan (12), Kieran (10) and Cameron (7) travelled to me in Wiltshire all the way from London for their shoot; we headed to a little known place that I use in my village, which all year round is beautiful and inspiring. Afterwards we headed to the local park, where the kids could run about, climb, swing and just hang out with dad for a bit. And I'm so glad I got to photograph Nathan before he got too much older, teens change so fast, they start turning into adults before you know it; these images are going to become all the more precious for that.


Father and his three boys enjoying family timeA family shoot taken in Tilshead, Salisbury, Wiltshire. Images of fun, laughter and happy times



Quality time with family can be pretty hard to find, and one of the things I love about doing family shoots is that I feel like I'm giving them some quality time together, the permission they sometimes need to relax, have fun, enjoy and be carefree, as well as capturing these moments forever.

We get so caught up in the day to day mundane that it's easy to forget simply how to have fun.

"Time is free, but it's priceless. You can't own it, but you can use it. You can't keep it, but you can spend it. Once you've lost it, you can never get it back"

Harvey Mackay

If you are looking to book a family shoot then why not get in touch, or if you want to know more about family shoots then check out my portrait page



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Family London Salisbury dad fun lifestyle photography portrait quality time wiltshire Mon, 25 Aug 2014 09:30:00 GMT
It's All About The Art It's All About The Art

Cream Teas are not our only passion

I've blogged about two cream tea visits recently, but cream teas aren't the only reason that Selena and I head out every month or so. As artists we are constantly looking for inspiration. We try to include a visit to somewhere that is showing some art or exhibition; a little culture to keep us motivated, a beautiful place and if we are lucky, a cream tea too.

Over the year and more we have visited lots of beautiful places. Lacock Abbey, Stourhead, Castle Combe, New Forest Lavender, Lavington and West Woods, plus many more.

We both take cameras, and where Selena captures images to paint, I capture images to refine my skills and create beautiful things that I may not always have the time to do otherwise. Although with many of the venues we visit being National Trust places I can't sell my images. Until now, they have been sitting on my computer, which seems such a shame.

This blog shows you how a day out can lead to all sorts of inspiration. And with so many images I've done a mini AV for you, so please sit back, relax and enjoy the images that keep me, and Selena, inspired.

This was a visit to Castle Combe, where we had a little cream tea in the tearoom (you'll see the pictures in the AV) but we also visited the church, which had some beautiful details in it, and some lovely stained glass windows. We explored the whole village, before heading to Lavington and an open garden day that was showcasing some stunning sculptures and garden art. I've shared my favourites, but there was much more.




So, I hope these leave you inspired. Did you have a favourite image? And are you now wanting to go and visit Castle Combe??
The next time you go somewhere, why not take your camera too and perhaps capture more than the obvious. Please let me know where you end up - and if they had a good cream tea!

If you haven't already seen the cream tea from Bradford on Avon, or the more recent one from the New Forest Lavender then please click on either link below

Bradford on Avon

Lavender Tea Rooms

If you feel you're not getting the most from your camera and would like to get images like these then why not book a day or half day training with me, I teach 1-2-1 and 2-2-1 and you can find the details on my Training Page

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Art Castle Combe Cream Tea Inspiration Lavington Open Garden Mon, 18 Aug 2014 09:00:00 GMT
Lavender And Cream Teas New Forest Lavender Tea Room


Lavender Tea Rooms New Forest HampsireThe lavender plants at the Lavender Tea Rooms in Hampshires New Forest Including their dedicated garden to the anniversary to the 1st world war


It's all about the Lavender

I was dashing to a meeting one day and saw the sign for the Lavender Tea Rooms, which is actually the New Forest Lavender, so once I got home I contacted Selena, my co-cream tea friend, and we fixed a date to go and sample their Lavender Cream Tea.

As you might imagine, there's quite a collection of cakes, pastries and other goodies to choose from, some of which are sprinkled with lavender from the very grounds we were seated in. I was really tempted by the lemon curd cake, and also the lavender shortcake.

We opted for the Lavender Scone and a Plain Scone. Sadly there wasn't a fruit one, our usual preferred choice, but what was served was lovely.


Lavender cream teaThe lavender scone, heart shaped, at the Lavender tea rooms - cream teas


The plates arrived, the scones themselves,  although only one on each plate, were generous, and heart shaped!! And there was a good amount of jam, although we both would have liked a little more cream; They were lightly dusted in icing sugar and decorated with some sprigs of lavender, which we took home as souvenirs.  


Lavender tea room in New Forest in HampshirePurple tea pot, a purple table, lavender scones and lavender sprigs at the Lavender tea rooms in Hampshires New Forest


We had the Breakfast Tea, which was good; and considering it was so early we didn't quibble over the lack of a pot of hot water to top it up (although I'm sure if we had asked we'd have got one). And of course, I was personally delighted that the teapot was purple!

The scones themselves were light, and very tasty. The lavender one is an experience. Although not my favourite flavour in the world, I wouldn't not eat it if someone bought me another, but would probably opt for the plain on in the future if I was buying for myself. I think Selena felt the same. However I would totally recommend trying them. If you love lavender then you will love the scone. We can't mark it down because of personal taste, the quality of the scone was excellent, just not our most favourite of flavours.

We got to the venue just after it opened and it was packed! If you got for a visit - which we both totally recommend that you do - don't dally, it gets pretty busy.

As you can tell from the images, it was an incredibly hot sunny day. Sitting outside, watching the birds, smelling the scents of the flowers (not just lavender) it was a wonderful place to just be.



I mentioned the birds, there were lots! Including finches and wagtails, some others I wasn't sure about. We shared our cream tea with the very cheeky little robin that was keeping an eye out for any crumbs... This one was lucky enough to get quite a big crumb!

So, marks out of ten, we gave a lovely 8/10 and really loved our visit.  If you are in the New Forest, don't pass them by, it's a beautiful place and well worth a look, as well as trying their Lavender scone, or cake if you prefer.


Have you been inspired by the lavender flavour?

Lavender is used for so much, the Lavender Tea Rooms really bought it home to us about it's use in food. SO we started to wonder what other flavours people might add to their scones. Personally I love a good Christmas flavoured scone, with cinnamon, nutmeg, orange vest and served up with raspberry jam and champagne clotted cream.  Selena says she's after a really good/naughty Chocolate one!

We'd love to hear your ideas, please share in the comments below, and please share this with other Cream Tea lovers


New Forest Lavender Lavender cream teaThe cream tea at New Forest Lavender tea rooms Sprig of lavender and a purple teapot


Hand Picked Hotels are running a competition to win an Afternoon Tea for Two at any one of their hotels, which are gorgeous, why not enter and if you win, tell me all about it


If you would like to visit the Lavender Tea Rooms their contact details are

New Forest Lavender/Lavender Tea Rooms
Giles Lane

email -

Tel 01794 323314


New Forest Lavender New Forest Lavender, lavender tea rooms in the New Forest, lavender plants, dried lavender and a pathway of lavender


]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Hampshire Lavender Lavender tea rooms New Forest South England bespoke commercial photography purple scone scones tea tea rooms wiltshire Sat, 16 Aug 2014 14:30:00 GMT
Cream Tea Madness Creams Teas and Fun Ideas


Traditional Cream TeaThe stunning cream tea from The Bridge Tea Rooms in Bradford on Avon Scones, jam, clotted cream

The story so far...

About a year ago my friend and fellow artist, Selena Wright, and I started taking the odd day out to explore Wiltshire and visit art inspired places and savour some culture to recharge our hearts and souls.
It must have been the second time we went out, to Lacock Abbey, and it was a wonderful warm day so we decided we'd crown it with a traditional cream tea; i
t was rather delicious.

The next time we went out we joked that we'd have to check out another cream tea. After the third time this happened we joked that we should blog our experiences and give our marks out of ten.

Now, we aren't qualified chefs, just two people who LOVE a good cream tea. But almost a year later, and after many "yes we must do that" we've decided that today is as good a day as any to start blogging about our adventures.

So, finding ourselves recently in the beautiful town of Bradford on Avon, and having worked up an appetite, we found a wonderful little tea room just opposite the Informations centre. Called The Bridge Tea Rooms, this beautiful tea room and restaurant was formerly a blacksmiths cottage dating back to 1502. It's full of qwerky original features that come with an old building - you can read more on their website.

The menu boasted the "best cream tea" and if you go this time of year you can experience seven amazing options of afternoon tea, including a Champagne one.

We chose our teas, and with our orders made we waited and enjoyed the time to take in all the bits decorating the walls. It's an artists little spot of paradise.


Tea Cup and the menu from The Bridge Tea Rooms in Bradford on AvonAn ivy decorated teacup and saucer and a close up of the menu detailing the Empress of Peking Tea from The Bridge Tea Rooms in Bradford on Avon


Matching teapots and teacups The table was laid out with matching tea pots and tea cups. tea strainers for the loose tea and a full jug of milk


The tables were set with matching tea sets. Two generous teapots (one with breakfast tea, the other with Empress of Peking Tea - loose tea leaves in both cases. Then another large teapot of hot water for topping up our teapots. I love the fact we didn't have to ask for this, they really understand tea drinkers.



When the cream tea arrived it came with two good sized scones, one plain and one with fruit (my personal favourite). It also came with two generous helpings of home made jam. One was raspberry and the other damson, both of which were delicious. Finally, the clotted cream; a mountain of it. We were told it was from a local supplier, just six miles from the Tea Room. It was very very good. I must add, this was for one person, my friend had a matching plate of goodies.

Is your mouth watering too??

What makes a good cream tea?

We've realised over the year leading up to this first blog, that size isn't everything. We've had big scones that weren't very exciting, and small ones that were divine, so we have put it down to taste, and quality. In the case of the jam and clotted cream - as well as how good they tasted we also decided that how much we were given did make a difference, you can't skimp on this area after all...

What did we think about this Cream Tea

It's a very good one. They have earned their right to be quoted as the best cream tea. The scones were fresh and not too heavy; definitely home made and generous with the fruit. The jams were tasty, you could really taste the fruit and they married well to the texture of the scones. The Clotted Cream was the finishing touch, really very good indeed. And in all cases, the tea, the scones, the jams and the cream, all were generous portions.

Although we aren't marking the service I have to note that the ladies who served us were friendly, helpful and excellent at their jobs, it's certainly a place of pride and it shows in their bearing and service.

We wanted to give this 10 out of 10 but worried we'd give ourselves no room to find a better one. However, it has set the bar high and leaves us a benchmark for futures cream teas! 9.5 out of 10 


Jam, or cream first?

Selena and I have giggled over this debate every time we sit down to a cream tea. I'm a Jam first, she's a cream first... She tells me that she treats the cream like a butter and then piles on the jam. I prefer to use the jam first so I can pile of the cream. My logic being that if you put the cream on first that the jam can slide off it...

Tell me what you think, especially if you're from Devon or Cornwall, where I hear there is much debate over the subject.

And do you know any other traditions that comes with eating Creams Teas?


Our thanks to everyone at The Bridge Tea Rooms.

If you are inspired to visit them after this little blog you can find them at

24a Bridge Street
Bradford on Avon
BA15 1BY

This time of year they suggest booking a table, you can contact them on 01225 865537

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Artist Barbara Leatham Bradford on Avon Cream tea Wiltshire commercial fun photography selena wright tea tea drinkers Fri, 18 Jul 2014 09:28:47 GMT
WIltshire collaboration When Happy Accidents and (some) Hard Work Meet


Mix a model, a jeweller, a florist and a photographer...

… and you get an morning of chatting, shopping and a collaborative shoot. 

I have to admit to this not being THE most planned shoot I've ever done. Seriously, it started with the lovely Sophie Fisher (Our gorgeous model for the day) getting in touch with me a couple of months ago, asking if I'd be interested in working with her and setting up some shoots for her portfolio.

We finally set a date for the shoot and then a week before I remembered I was doing it I realised we'd not set a venue, theme, a make-up artist (MUA) or anything
Most people panic, but as I am the personification of the 11th hour I wasn't stressed at all, after all, if you don't have a plan then it can't go wrong.

I posted a casting call on my Facebook page for a MUA and although I have made some contacts sadly no one could make the date. However, here comes the happy accident! The lovely Maria from Pinn Studio in Salisbury did contact me and asked if I'd be interested in using some of the beautiful jewellery they had created. Well I nearly bit her hand off! 

On the morning of the shoot I ran into Gullicks Florist where Heather, one of the wonderful ladies who works there, supplied me with some simple flowers for the models hair. I can't thank them enough, they are always sorting flowers for me at short notice, totally recommend them every time.
You can see the blog I did on Gullicks Florist for Mothers Day last year. If you're in Salisbury you should pop in and say hello.

Sophie, Maria and I met at the Boston Tea Party in Salisbury, (I did a blog on them too) still a favourite haunt for me to meet clients, and we spent a good hour chatting and getting excited, not necessarily about the shoot we were about to do, as we knew it was just about having a little bit of fun and getting to know each other, but about the shoots we will be doing in the future.  

So, the resulting images are what comes when we aren't very organised, well planned out or with an art director. We had no MUA, stylist or anything else that usually comes with a collaborative shoot. But we did have enthusiasm, fun and lots of tea/coffee and cake ( a staple diet of anyone on these kinds of ventures.

Can you imagine what we'll come up with when we are more organised….!

In case you're wondering where the shopping came into the mix, we had a good old rummage throughout the local charity shops and managed to come away with a black pencil skirt, a black and white bag and a rather large orange wooden bangle. It was pretty good fun 

Sophie wasn't able to keep a straight face forever, a beautiful smile caught as a little "behind the scenes" moment

My thanks to Sophie Fisher for being such a wonderful model

To Maria and Matthew from Pinn Studio for supplying the very beautiful jewellery

And to Heather and the ladies at Gullicks Florist for always wearing their super girl pants when ever I'm desperately in need of their services

I look forward, very much, to working with you both again


If you are a model, a makeup artist, a hair stylist, or a designer, who would love to get together for a collaboration then please get in touch





]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Fashion Salisbury Wiltshire art bespoke fun model photographer photography portfolio portrait Wed, 26 Mar 2014 18:10:23 GMT
Mothers Day in Wiltshire Mothers Love on Mothers Day


Mothers day photo, Mothers day photo shoot by Wiltshire photographer Barbara Leatham Close up images of mum and daughter holding hands


Why is having photos with your children important - for them.

Since having my children I've come to understand the need to have photos taken with them every year. It's a great excuse to have fun, and give yourself time from the day to day grind of life. but mostly because I need to leave my children with memories, pictures of us together that they can cherish when (in a very long time yet I hope) there will be a time that I'm no longer here.

Mother's Day is a constant reminder that being a mum as well as a daughter, I need to remember to have pictures with my own mum too.

That is one of the reasons why Mothers Days shoots are so wonderful to be part of, the opportunity to create fabulous memories for another mother and daughter. I'm sure that many people will instantly think I'm talking about a mum with a young daughter, but this shoot was with two wonderful ladies, Liv (who is in her 20's) and her fantastic mum Jo (I'm too polite to share her age).


These are their images, and these are their words


Mothers Day styled shootLiv and Jo on their Mothers Day shoot sat on the veranda laughing copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham photography

Mother and daughter Mothers Day shootmental moments with Liv and Jo having fun on their shoot Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

Memories, happiness and balletMum and daughter cherish memories of childhood happiness on their shoot Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

full of lovemum and daughter, jo and liv, sharing cuddles and laughter on the veranda Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

Messing aboutMum and daughter messing about with the led heart Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

art portraitsmontage of art portraits from the Mothers Day shoot with Liv and Jo Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography



As you can tell from Barbara's lovely pictures, my mum, is a very elegant, classy lady. She is great fun and more of a friend to me than a mum. She treats me like a grown up, but makes allowances for my rather ditzy nature, which must leave her a bit exasperated with me at times. She is very encouraging and supportive as you would expect from a mum, but she really goes the extra mile to help me and nothing is too much trouble.

From my very earliest memories of her scrunching my hair up to put it in a bun for ballet and slipping me into my leotard to more recently helping me move myself to London at short notice to follow my career, I know I can always count on her for her. I probably don't tell her enough what she means to me and I know I am a very lucky lady to have such a beautiful mum.

Mum has always captured my sister and I growing over the years and there are photos of us at varying ages all around her house. However, there are very few of mum and I together as she is usually the one behind the camera. Being able to arrange this photo shoot was incredibly important to me as I knew it would be a Mother's Day present that mum will treasure forever. We had great fun reminiscing over events from the past and with Barbara's warm and friendly approach, we soon relaxed into having our photos taken. 
A big thank you to Babs for making my mum's Mother's Day such a special one!


Favourite pictureJo showing her favourite picture from when her daughter was little Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

favourite childhood pictureLiv sharing her favourite childhood picture Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

Hugs are bestHanging out with mum is still cool, capturing the images forever is precious Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

Ballet slippers and bunny earsMessing about the the ballet slippers, don't take life too seriously Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

rare quiet momentjust appreciating being together, quality time for mum and daughter Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

Mothers Day, a perfect dayMemories all around, and still creating new ones Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

Mothers PrideMothers pride and a daughters love, so perfect Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

Say CheeseMessing about with the camera, taking over the shoot - so much fun Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

Never too seriousso much fun with these two. funny faces, dancing the tango Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

Skipping the light fantasticLiv and Jo dancing, laughing, having fun, enjoying the time and creating memories Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

Eskimo kissesEskimo kisses and trying not to laugh, priceless Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography

Piggy-back funFabulous end to an amazing shoot. This Mothers Day will last forever Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography



I am a pretty modern mum and I have tried to give Liv the confidence to not be afraid to try anything once and to give life a go. My husband and I did our best to instil into both Liv and her sister, Clarice, an attitude that anything is possible in life and you just have to go out there and do your best to achieve it. This attitude has obviously resonated with Liv as two years ago she gave up work at MAC, to pursue a hair and make-up career in TV, Film or theatre.  She graduated from Delamar Academy, at Ealing Studio's,  and after networking like crazy she has her dream job working at the musical Wicked in London and is happily helping Elphaba every night to turn green.
Liv wasn't your typical teenager. We rarely had tantrums, she was a delight to be around and is a warm, funny and lovely caring person to be with. The photo of Liv giggling, captures her personality completely.  My gorgeous girl is following her dream and I couldn't be prouder of her.
With Liv now working full time in London, we wanted to take this opportunity to capture this stage of our lives together as she embarks on her new career in London's theatre land and her new life. A photo shoot was something we had wanted to do for some time as it gave us an opportunity to spend some quality time together, which was hugely important to us both at this time as our busy lives will somewhat get in the way of that for the foreseeable future.
We chose Barbara because Liv had worked with her on a number of weddings last year and loved her professionalism and relaxed approach and the beautiful pictures she produced. Her ideas for the prop's from Liv's youth were inspired I.e. the gorgeous pictures of her and her sister, Clarice, and they added a lovely backdrop to some of the photos Barbara took.
As we'd expected, we had a truly relaxed, fun and enjoyable morning in Wiltshire and Barbara made us want to express ourselves like the showgirls we are underneath. Barbara found us a perfect venue for the shoot and we found ourselves giggling and reminiscing all morning, which was just what we both wanted. It was a morning neither if us will forget and we have some wonderful photos and memories we can look back on in years to come with pride and much love. 

So much loveA beautiful day, with amazing people, creating stunning memories forever Copyright 2014 Barbara Leatham Photography


I've got an amazing Mothers Day offer from me to my clients until the end of March 2014 You can find the details here or you can check out my Portraits page for more information



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Mothers Day Salisbury daughter family fun joy love mum portraits portraiture wiltshire Wed, 12 Mar 2014 10:00:00 GMT
2013 What a journey! 2013 Has Been Quite A Year


my family by Siobhan Murphy

Photograph, by Siobhan Murphy


I wanted to put together some of the highs and lows that have happened in 2013 for the business and myself. Looking back at the highlights I see that many of them came from when times were difficult.

In the middle of 2012 I phoned up a lovely lady called Catherine Conner and spelled out to her that if I couldn't get to grips with my business I would have to hang up my camera and find a job. I was heart broken and wondering what on earth I was going to do.

After a good chat, a few giggles and a long hard look at my situation Catherine suggested I pop along to the Bespoke Insight Day at Aspire Photography Training. The course is 12 months long, and it's hard work. They give you the tools for the job, but the bottom line is that you are the one who has to put in the time and work to make things happen.

Deciding to go on the course wasn't easy, I was already at breaking point and even now I've no idea how on earth I managed to do it all, but I have and it was the best thing ever that I could have done for myself and my business.

During the year I learned a few home truths, including the fact that it's not a bad thing to be a good photographer, but that you have to love the business or it won't love you back - and they are so right! I'm more aware of my strengths, and my weaknesses are just obstacles that I need to overcome to be successful.

I need to give a massively HUGE thank you to Jane Breakell (business guru at Aspire), for being my sounding board, my voice of reason and a wonderful friend when things got tough. I also need to thank the other 13 delegates of Group 38, with special mention to Michelle and Janet, for being so wonderful, supportive and helpful too. Much of what I've learned over the 12 months came from their support as well as that of the Aspire team - you guys rock!

The biggest difficulty with getting my business established was the fact we kept getting posted to different parts of the country. In two years we moved from Suffolk to Berkshire and finally we moved and settled in WIltshire. Every time I got settled and started to get the business known locally we had to move. The cost of getting re-established every time was draining the business. But even buying a house didn't make things completely trouble free. Less than a year after buying our home, and the week after I'd paid my first instalment on my course, my husband found out he was going to be doing a four month deployment in Afghanistan - seriously bad timing for me, right at the start of the summer holidays, with two children wanting to be entertained and a business to run AND towards what was going to be the end of my course. However, thanks to the gratefully received support and help from our families we all managed to get through it.

People close to me that I need to thank

I want to take this time to give a special mention of thanks to my sister-In-law, Catherine Leatham.  One of the hardest things about being a creative and trying to start/run your own business is that many people close to you see it more like a hobby than a career choice. Getting them to understand that your "hobby" can actually pay the bills and isn't just a passing phase is something most of us have to deal with.

Always an avid supporter of my work, Cathy understands what it means for me to do the job I love. She's constantly putting my name forward for commissions and anything that is remotely linked to photography. And this year I had the chance to repay her support by doing some work for Maxx Design Ltd. The company that she, Dermot and Jackie have invested many years in to create. Last year I worked on some amazing projects with them; it's reminded me that Commercial Photography is something I really love doing and that it is a way for me to explore my skills, not only as a people photographer, but as someone who works well under pressure in unusual circumstances. 
My thanks to Dermot as well, for the insightful chats during the drive to and from London on commercial jobs, I'm more sure about many areas of photography, and more philosophical about life too.

Along with the support of Cathy, I really have to thank my awesome husband David, who has always told me to "go for it".
Even when it was likely to plunge us into debt; he always has more faith in me than I do myself. When things are hard he's there for me, (and he does all the ironing AND my book keeping too, he's a saint!)
He sees all the late nights/early mornings I put in when I'm trying to finish a job for someone, the worrying, huffing and puffing as well as the funny faces I pull when things aren't quite the way I want them to - and he doesn't mock me - too much. He thinks I'm somewhere between a perfectionist and a suffer of OCD… He may have a small point.

Although he still doesn't "get" photography the way I do, he does see how I light up when I've done a job that I love more than any other (always the last job I've done I'm sure) and he sees the child-like excitement that exudes from me when someone is happy with the images I have captured for them. He's my rock and saving grace; along with my children (who give the best mummy hugs in the world) he keeps me grounded and mostly sound of mind too.

Thanks also to my friends Nikki, Sally, Nedine, Rachel and Tania for letting me rant at them when things get tough and helping me find my sense of humour when I think it's run off with my mojo - lots of tea drinking, cake eating and long phone calls!

To all my wonderful clients, many whom have become friends, Thank You. For trusting and investing in my work, allowing me to be part of your lives for a small amount of time and to have the opportunity to create beautiful images for you.

I know there are many more people I should be thanking for this last year, although I've not listed you all here I am grateful for your support. Thank you guys!

Things that stick in your mind...

Two of the jobs that really stuck out for me last year are both family shoots. Firstly, the Williams/White family shoot; the family wanted to capture some magical times before Claire got more ill and wasn't able to join in. In the last 12 months since she was diagnosed her symptoms have escalated to the point where moving about or just talking is a lot of hard work for her. Seeing her share a magical day with her family was priceless. Since the shoot she's had her favourite images framed and are now sitting proudly on her wall to help her have a reason to smile every day. She reminds me to count my blessings every day.

The second shoot was the Cole family. Melissa spoke to me over a year before to arrange the shoot and between one thing and another it never happened. We finally did the shoot a couple of months ago, it was supposed to be of her two children, but I squeezed her in a few of the shots too and she loves them. These are so precious to her because not too long ago she lost her own mum. It's a constant reminder to me that there will be a day when I won't be here for my children and all they will have left are the memories and the photographs. 

William, Ella and mumAutumn portraits of Ella, William and Mum taken in Chittern park, Salisbury, Wiltshire, on November 5th 2013


Bring on 2014

So, 2014, what is in store. I've absolutely no idea to be honest. I've got plans to do more commercial work while I build up the portrait side of the business. I'm also working on a personal project that I hope will be good enough for an exhibition. I have two weddings in April, one of which is in America (making me excited and scared in equal measure) and then I think I'll be focusing on finding new subjects to create photographic stories about so I can keep blogging. 

I've also registered with a charity group called Butterfly Wishes Network. An amazing group of professional photographers who give their time to photograph families whose children have potentially life shortening illnesses. I'm hoping that I'll be doing my bit this year for some families who I know will cherish the images I'll create for them.

I'd love to teach in a school as a visiting lecturer and go on to inspire a whole new generation of photographers the way my tutor (thanks Carl Hopley) inspired me. Otherwise I'll be hoping to make my mark in the Wiltshire area, making new contacts and networking with like minded businesses, but most of all, making the most emotive, heart warming and inspiring images I can. 

I hope you'll all keep with me for the forth coming adventure. I'm so excited and feeling truly positive about everything - it's going to be a hell of a journey!


The Artist is nothing without the gift, but the gift is nothing without work - Emile Zola



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Barbara Bespoke Leatham Salisbury Wiltshire fun photographer photography review Thu, 09 Jan 2014 11:00:00 GMT
If friendship was measured in miles…. Friendship That Crosses Distances


When you get asked to photograph two friends you know that there's bound to be something magical in the images.



Heather and Sarah-Jane have kindly written their own words that talk about their friendship. Neither knows what they other has written, so this blog will be the very first time they read what they other has put. 

I only got to spend a little time with the two them, but I could see that theirs is a friendship that can't be measured by time or distance.

First to send me her words, Sarah-Jane, here's what she says...

I guess I should start with how I know this person that I look so pleased to be photographed with.

Heather and I did not grow up together but we fit so comfortably into each others lives that it feels like we've known each other forever.
I grew up in New Zealand and Heather in England. 
For a brief but amazing period in our early twenties we lived, played, trained, studied and grew up a little bit together in Australia. Sydney was our stomping ground and the carefree summers spent there were pretty glorious!

Currently I am living in a particularly hard to get to part of New Zealand and Heather is back in England, so we don't see each other a whole lot.
On a recent holiday when I went to stay with Heather and her family in England we had the chance to do this shoot with Barbara. For me these pictures are a record of a holiday and a long distance friendship where any time spent together is precious. 

It is cool to have a record of the 'normal time', the day to day stuff that makes a good friendship what it is. We're not glammed up, we had not achieved anything especially great that morning and there is no event or celebration to go to after, the photos are just about us and that in itself is quite special.

As we left the shoot, Barbara asked us to think and then write about what it is that we value most about this friendship. After a lot of thought I have realised that what I value when we are in the same place is the same as what I miss most about Heather when we are countries or hemispheres apart.
It is the comfort that comes with spending time with someone who knows me too well. All the good chats, the easy silences, the peaceful naps and the pants wetting laughter.

Thanks Barbara for taking such beautiful photos between (and during) the giggle fits and thanks Heather for entrenching yourself in my life, I'm pretty glad you did! XX



Magic of friendshipSarah and Heather sharing a magical hour before my camera. Making memories and captured forever. Photos by Barbara leatham Photography, Wiltshire, Salisbury based

Here are Heathers words

The first thing I remember Sarah-Jane saying to me when we met six years ago was, ‘I think it’s awesome that you moved to Australia for Ben.’ I had just postponed university for a guy on the other side of the world and her easy and direct judgment was breath of fresh air after months of self-doubt and questioning.  Turns out, it was a sign of what was to come: in the past six years we’ve always been frank with and supportive of one another.

Eighteen months after that meeting Sarah-Jane moved in with me, the afore-mentioned Ben, and another two friends. That year went quickly. We baked daily, napped often and studied rarely. Often, one of us would make an attempt at studying only to have the other sabotage the effort with cookies or just general gossip.

We quickly understood that we were often thinking the same thing, whether it was about what to cook for dinner or judging someone’s outfit. Although it was incredibly comfortable and like living with an extension of your self, I don’t think we took it for granted. I know I was grateful for every giggle, every piece of advice and every wardrobe steal that passed between us.

Our specialty was (and still is) costume parties. A few times a year we would plan a house party with a much-deliberated costume theme and then spend weeks working on our outfits. We would scour charity shops across Sydney for the perfect dress or jumpsuit, often purchasing several options, and then adorn it with ridiculous embellishments. Artemis, Medusa, drag queens, 80s revival, Sherlock Holmes, WW2 nurse – no detail was left unattended. Years later it stood us in good stead for my wedding; we just treated it like another fantastic party with fabulous costumes.

In 2009, Sarah moved back home to New Zealand and left a big hole in my life. We were a mess at the airport but didn’t need to say much because we understood one another so well. We were determined the distance was going to make as minimal a difference as possible. We still share everything and send each other recipes, costume ideas, and unproductive procrastination ideas. We’ve flown between Australia and New Zealand to see each other and also between New Zealand and the UK. Every time we start off exactly as we left and whether the trip is a week or a month we still work best when we are living in each other’s back pocket.

When Barbara took these photos of us, it was the day before Sarah-Jane flew back to New Zealand after visiting us in the UK. Ben and I weren’t due to leave the UK for another 9 months and so Sarah-Jane and I were unsure of when we would see each other again, not helped by the fact I was also 6 and a half months pregnant. For that reason the morning was beautiful, fun, emotional and at times bittersweet. I think Barbara captured all of that and more.

A fortnight later, it looked like Ben and I would be heading back to Australia sooner than planned. Flying 7 weeks before my due date, leaving my family in the UK again, and preparing for a new arrival in Australia, I was in upheaval. Trust Sarah to say the right thing again: ‘You know I’ll fly over when you need me, don’t you?’ And I know she will. 


You can tell from the words the girls have written that they had no idea what the other was going to write, but from what they have written I think it shows more about their friendship and what they value from each other.

Please take a little time to watch the slideshow from their shoot


I remember thinking that I need to arrange a photo shoot with my best friends, that it would give us some photos that will see us into our doddering old age - how we can look back on them, laugh at the fun things we've done over the years and that it would be a great way to capture a moment that has been the many years of our friendship. Mostly how we can cherish for a long time to come something that will always be important to us.

Friendships can come from people we live close to, and people who are close to us but live far away, distance has no bearing on the depth of that friendship. It shows itself in small ways, a silent understanding, laughing at the same things, knowing each others thoughts, most of all, being there for each other when things get tough, knowing that you don't have to say a thing because being there is enough to give the other one strength.


Don't put off for another time the chance to capture your friendship with your bestie. I love photographing friends, there's an energy that comes out of the session that leaves everyone smiling from ear to ear. Maybe that's the untold stories of getting into trouble together over the years, the original guilty pleasure.


You can find out more details about photo shoots here or you can contact me - and if you leave a comment here telling me that this blog inspired you to arrange a shoot with your best friend(s) you'll get a best friend 10% discount off your shoot.

Please share this blog with your friends too, I hope it inspires lots of people x


]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Friends WIltshire family fun happiness joy photo photographer salisbury shoot Wed, 08 Jan 2014 12:56:10 GMT
Christmas Scones and Kids Post Christmas Treats


Christmas Scones, flour everywhereMy daughter covered in flour after making Christmas Scones. Christmas in Tilshead, Wiltshire


How do you entertain your kids at Christmas?

Entertaining the kids during the Christmas Holibobs can seem quite daunting. The excitement leading up to the big day, the unwrapping of gifts, then the lead up the day when they go back to school. Well this Christmas I found myself searching out interesting things to cook with the kids.

I remember a friend and fellow photographer (David Goodier) who had been tasked to do a photographic essay, he used the opportunity of cooking  and it inspired me to capture the fun my daughter had making Christmas Scones.



Take a small step (so she can reach), a recipe from the internet, a little imagination, some ingredients and lots of excitement, it doesn't take very much really to entertain my kids.


Measure, mix, measure and sievemeasuring out the ingredients, beating up eggs, sieving the flour


Robyn loves cooking with mummy, it was sometimes hard to remember to take the photos, but I'm so glad I did.


Learning new techniquesLearning to sieve flour is quite hard mummy


I think Robyn prefers measuring out the ingredients to sieving the flour, it's a wonder there was any left in the bowl. But adding the Christmas spices is easy and they smell good too.


Oranges and lemonsRobyn eating the oranges after I've peeled the zest


The recipe called for the zest of an orange, for some reason that was fair game for my kids to eat the orange afterwards, I didn't get a look in, however….



….daddy sneaked in and pinched a little.


Making breadcrumbsTime to get messing making bread crumbs, then turning out the mixture and rolling it ready for cutting


Making breadcrumbs was interesting, and messy. Rolling out the mixture was fun too. and the cutters at the ready.

Now, for some reason things got busy with cutting and then putting in the oven, and, believe it or not, I totally forgot I was taking photos, so you have to take my word for it that these things happened. and the proof - as they say - is in the eating.


looking proudthe scones turned out well in the end future Wiltshire baker of the year


I can tell you that they tasted great and went down well with jam and champagne clotted cream (for the adults) - Robyn just had jam!


Was it fun? Yes. Was it hard work? Yes, Was it worth it? Well, look at the smile on my little girls face.


Creating photographic stories is the basis of all my work, whether it's weddings, family portraits or commercial work, there has to be narrative.

The next time you make something with your kids, take photos. The getting ready, the making and the end results all help with the story, but the best part of the narrative is you making memories for them. 

If this inspires you then why not share your photo stories with me on my Facebook Page, I can't wait to see if people do this and what they take photos of x

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Salisbury christmas family fun holidays photography scones wiltshire Mon, 06 Jan 2014 10:30:00 GMT
Exposure for Tilshead Sunsets and Exposures


Do you ever try and take a photo of a sunset or sunrise only to look at the taken image and get disappointed with the results?


WIltshire SunsetsSunset in Tilshead, Salisbury, Wiltshire. December 6th 2013

The first images is what the camera said it should be, the second is what I could see myself


I've been taking photos for years, and every day I'm still learning new skills. One instance was about five or six years ago, dashing out the door with my little compact camera because of a fantastic sunset, scattered clouds and stunning colours (sound familiar??) However, I had the camera set on Auto and the images I saw on the back of the camera was nothing like what I was seeing with my own eyes.

Auto settings on a camera will read the scene and think that it's far too dark, therefore it will either increase your exposure, or open up the aperture to get the image. You then end up with a bright sky and sadly, none of the gorgeous colours or details you can see right in front of you. It's so frustrating !!

Most cameras now allow you choose your own exposure,even compact ones, and this will be come your best friend when trying to capture the scene you can see. You need to expose for the brighter parts of the sky, it will usually mean the shutter is reasonably fast. (which is great, no one wants camera shake in their photos). But when you recompose the shot the camera might try and argue with you but telling you that the exposure is wrong. Ignore it and take the shot, see what you get, I bet you'll be pleasantly surprised.


Playing with the exposure means you can refine the final image. There's 1/3rd of a stop difference in the exposures between each of these images


Cameras are only as intelligent as the data stored in their chips; sometimes you just need to argue with the camera to get the exposure you want. You are the photographer, not the camera; which, at the end of the day, is just a box that allows light to travel through it to a sensor or a film. You control the amount of light, and for how long - these two controls make you the artist, never forget that x


The first image was because I'd made the rookie error of not checking my exposure before I took the shot


Sunsets don't last for long, sometimes you can rush and not check your settings, but sometimes you get happy accidents that leave you with a photo you might not have had otherwise. 

Using a telephoto lens will compact an image, drawing the background into the foreground, compressing the image. A wide-angle lens will do the opposite, stretching the background out and giving a completely different feel to a scene


The first image is with a telephoto lens, compressing the scene; the next two are wider focal lengths, the last shot was to match the exposure to the first shot, which is a truer exposure to what I could see with my own eyes


Cropping the scene can make a difference too. Not all landscape pictures are shot in a landscape format. When you have so much detail in the sky you might decide that it's more important than the rest of the image, so make it a statement and feature it in the final image. You might decide that it's all about the sky, so cut the land out completely and create some abstract art. 


Portrait of a sunsetPortrait of a Sunset in Tilshead, Salisbury, Wiltshire. December 6th 2013

Top left, cropped square with no land in the scene making it more abstract. Bottom left, as I first felt the scene was best presented. Right the final crop, a portrait panoramic landscape.


At the end of the day, the final images you create are down to you. Your camera is way to capture that you see with your eyes, but more importantly, what you see with your heart. 

I'm very lucky that all these images were taken in less than ten minutes and were quite literally on my door step. This field overlooks my front door, or rather my front door overlooks this field. When my living room wall looks like it's on fire then I dash out with my camera and take as many images as I can in the small amount of time I've got before the light fades, the colours dim and the darkness settles in for the night. 


If you've been inspired by these images, then please share your work with me on my Facebook Page I would love to see what inspires you. If you feel that you want to get these kinds of shots but you're not getting this from your camera, maybe a little 1-2-1 training would help you. 



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Salisbury art fine art landscape photography sunsets teaching training wiltshire Thu, 12 Dec 2013 11:10:11 GMT
Creating Heavenly Cupcakes Christmas Magic at Cupcake Heaven

Every wondered how the magic happens…?

Every weekend the wonderful people at Cupcake Heaven create "Something Special for the Weekend" So, knowing I wanted to do a photo story on them I set them a challenge for this weekend coming. 

Now, for me, mixing two things that I love, cake AND Christmas means that inspiration should have been over flowing, and to be honest, I wasn't doing too bad. But what follows in the next few images proves that your starting point is hardly ever your ending point.

Last Monday (Dec 2nd) I left Sandy and Sharon thinking about Mistletoe and Wine, and Holly and the Ivy….


Brain storming for Cupcake HeavenSandy and Sharon are busy thinking about inspiration for their "something for the weekend" cupcake


Usually their brain storming happens with Paul and Graham at a local pub over a glass of something festive and a tasty morsel of food, however, this time it started in the shop, although it may not have ended here.


Taking notes of cake ideasCupcake Heaven in Salisbury like to make notes about ideas for their cake ideas, hand written and with sketches


Everything about Cupcake Heaven is the personal touch, including the fact that note taking is all done by hand, scribbled notes and lots of A4 pads of paper filled with ideas and musings.



Having left Sandy and Sharon on the Monday with Christmas song titles to inspire them, I went home thinking about a million other things. What do you think about when you think of Christmas, I have crackers and sweets, brandy snaps and stockings, decorations and everything was just whizzing about in my head. However I've learned that having all the ideas is all well and good, but someone then has to turn these ideas into cakes!


Prepping or experimentsIcing bags, cakes and colouring at the ready


Things like chocolate or vanilla cake??? Red icing and red cake cases??? Do we add anything into the cake mixture itself, maybe mixing a flavour with the icing… Thankfully I'm not the one making the deciding factors.

Sharon has been baking for a few years now (being a lady I didn't ask how long) but she's incredibly talented and was kind enough to share some tips of her trade. So if you've ever wondered how to get a bit of colour in your icing (like an ice-cream Mr Whippy) you need two pipping bags, one set ready with the nozzle, the other snipped just at the end with a small hole for the coloured icing to be pipped down the bag of the main icing bag.

Then you run a line of the coloured icing down one side of the main icing bag before filling with normal vanilla icing; it's so easy, why I never figured this before I don't know.


Adding colour to your icingAdding a little colour to the main icing bag before putting the main white icing in makes for a fabulous decoration on a cupcake

And doesn't it look amazing!


It seemed that Sandy and Sharon had set on the idea of a peppermint candy themed cake, and I instantly got excited about the possibilities. However, on this first try we decided that there was just a little too much red - it reminded me of the clove flavoured gob-stoppers I used to get as a kid, a little too red hot, so….


Mixing up green icing Mixing green icing for Cupcake Heaven's Something for the Weekend cupcakes


We thought that green might be a better colour… mixing up more icing and prepping the icing bag ready



Adding there green to the piping bag and then topping with vanilla, it was really starting to come together. But it's always the attention to detail that makes the different between something thrown together and something well thought out and professional.



Now, a big decision, do the candy canes look better sitting on the icing, or pushed into it, we actually debated this at some length


Sprinkles on cupcakestrying different sprinkles, edible glitter on christmas candy cane cupcakes


And should pearlescent or silver edible glitter be used? I bet you didn't think it would be so difficult to choose. 


Taste testing Christmas CupcakesServed up and ready to eat, candy cane cupcakes


They do look delicious don't they, and we were about to sign off on the decision before I got all excited and suggested something else


Candy crush cupcakescrushed up candy canes sprinkled on top of the cupcakes


So, what would happen if the candy cane is crushed…?


Good enough to eatCandy crush cupcakes by Cupcake Heaven and photographed by Barbara leatham photography, Wiltshire and Salisbury based


Now, I'm not saying that this is the final evolution of this particular cake, so you'll just have to pop along to Cupcake Heaven this weekend to find out! But I do think that if I ever hang up my camera I could take a job in creating cupcakes - just as long as there's somewhere like Cupcake Heaven that can make them for me.

Is it me or do you feel like cake right now?


You can find Cupcake Heaven here

9 The Maltings

Phone 01722 340344


In the mean time, you can read more about Cupcake Heaven in my first blog about them "It Really Is Cupcake Heaven"

My huge thanks to Sandy, Paul, Sharon and all the staff at Cupcake Heaven for letting me sneak into their world and share it with you; Salisbury is a richer place having you guys in town x



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Salisbury cakes candy canes christmas cupcake heaven photo story photography wiltshire Wed, 11 Dec 2013 10:30:00 GMT
It Really Is Cupcake Heaven Always Time For Cake!


The secret haven for cake lovers

There's a wonderful little shop in Salisbury called Cupcake Heaven, and it really is just that. Full of delicious cakes all tempting you to buy them, and lots of tea (even enough for me), coffee and hot chocolate to warm you up on these chilly winter days; it's got to be one of the best places to recharge during the Christmas holiday shopping!

Time for teateapots, tea cups, coffees and hot chocolate, and best of all, lots of cakes at Cupcake heaven in Salisbury, Wiltshire

Cupcake Heaven was relatively recently taken over by the lovely Sandy and Paul Gregory. Paul, it seems, harboured a dream, or what Sandy called a "Plan B" from his normal day to day work.

A cup of teaPouring a hot cup of tea and people watching

Having had a childhood of happy memories, firstly from watching his mum, who worked at Le Croquembouche - in Plymouth - and then later as a teenager actually helping out with the cooking and the waiting, he remembered it always as having a "good vibe" about it; it had "good coffees and cakes" and this was something he wanted to share with others, and so the search began to find a likely place in Wiltshire.

Sandy and Paul did rigorous research, all hard work and grafting; that is visiting likely venues for ideas, concepts and positioning in the local area. Obviously the compulsory trying of the products had to be included and scored.

Research for a coffee/cake shop in Salisbury and surrounding area

In March 2012 they visited Cupcake Heaven. It ticked lots of their key things, which included the size and the location, so they took it on as a going concern.

A cupcake a day...A busy Tuesday morning for Cupcake Heaven, lots of people stopping either on their way to or from the town centre for a hot drink and a tasty treat


There were big challenges, it was at that point making a loss and the change over in staff can often be quite trying. Their first weekend included facing the prospect of being closed by the Monday because there wasn't enough stock and the baker had handed in their notice. They looked into getting suppliers so they could survive the following week, one of which was a local cake maker - a lovely lady called Sharon - who just so happened to be looking for a change in direction for her career. Some would call this a match made in heaven, I like to think it's more a match made for Cupcake Heaven! Sharon started work that Monday and she's still there now concocting marvellous creations for the shop. It's really fantastic to know where this little company have come from and where it wants to go; Sandy told me that they are all still "learning together".

There's now a whole collection of staff working there, and as of this week, Cupcake Heaven have embarked on a local government scheme to help mum's gain work experience prior to going back to work after having a child. It's wonderful to see how they support the local community.


savoury snacks are Cupcake HeavenHot buttered toast, a slices of cake, or a delicious panini, all available at Cupcake Heaven

More than just cupcakesBread and butter pudding, cupcakes and flapjack, fresh out of the oven and ready for finishing before going into the shop for sale


Things in the shop have changed in the time since it was taken over; they now offer savoury snacks, including panini's, sandwiches, home made soups, toast and more. Their menu is inspired by the seasons and it's allowed them to cater to a wider audience. Lunch times are now busy where they used to be quiet, and new customers as well as the regulars are finding more reason to pop in and try the delights on offer. Something that has had a huge impact has been the addition of Gluten free cakes for customers, now just about everyone has the chance to indulge a little bit. You can also order celebration cakes, made to order and with fantastic detailing and decorations. You can see some of their client orders here


fancy a cake...lemon drizzle cake, raspberry cake, all made from scratch and tasting wonderful Delicious Lemon Drizzle Cupcakes, or Raspberry Cupcakes, too many choices!!


freshly made cakes to tempt youSharon, from Cupcake Heaven just finished making Lemon Drizzle Cupcakes and Raspberry Cupcakes ready for sale in the shop

Sharon about to take her creations into the shop for selling


Some interesting things you might not know about Cupcake Heaven,

  • They teach cake decorating courses
  • They attend the Salisbury Fashion show twice a year
  • They also attend the Salisbury Indulgence Show
  • They are regular contributors to charities and events
  • The promote local artists (artwork is on show and for sale in the shop)
  • They have made cakes for music artists, including Eric Johnson
  • Their experimental gluten free cake went world-wide on FaceBook, a photographic record!


While I was spending the morning with them I got to see how some of the creations come to life. These are Chocolate Orange Cupcakes, and Mars Bar Cupcakes

Chocolate orange cupcakesChocolate orange cupcakes, the finishing touches, including the gooey orange middle and the chocolate icing and Terries Chocolate Orange on top


Mars Bar cupcakesCupcake Heaven isn't complete without a serious indulgent Mars Bar cupcake, complete with caramel, chocolate icing, Mars Bar and more caramel


Chocolate Orange or Mars Bar HeavenChocolate Orange or Mars Bar Heaven, cupcakes ready for sale in Cupcake Heaven, Salisbury, Wiltshire - near The Maltings

- which ones do you think you'd go for?? The Mars Bar one is winning me over I think.


I'm rather a fan of afternoon tea and scones, so I was totally delighted to see that Scones were on the menu, and you can have them served warm or cold. Made from a recipe that has been altered to meet with Sharon's exacting standards, from start to finish they look fab.


Afternoon tea and sconesAfternoon tea and scones, freshly made, very tempting and smelt fantastic, served up with clotted cream and jam

Scones, with jam and clotted cream, perfect any time of the day, week, month, year!


Every weekend, Cupcake Heaven do "something Special for the Weekend" A cake and/or cupcakes that are themed for an event, season or just something unique. Obviously these next few weekends are themed for Christmas, so make sure you pop along to see what they have this weekend.


I can thoroughly recommend Cupcake Heaven as a place to go and hibernate from the cold with a good book, or catch up with a friend over a guilty pleasure, and even a place to go with the kids as a treat after a day racing around the shops. The weekends are always busy, but Cupcake Heaven is just the place to stop and recharge, eat good food and pick up on the good vibes that are in the air. 


This Wednesday (11th Dec) I'll be blogging again about Cupcake Heaven, specifically about their "Something for the Weekend" specials. I have a behind the scenes photo story of how they brain storm (often in a local pub over dinner - a winner as far as I'm concerned!) and how a little trial and error helps create some really fabulously festive treats for you. So, if you want a little heads up before next weekend of whats going to be in store, be sure to check out my blog on Wednesday!

Until then here is Cupcake Heaven's address, pop in and see them and tell them I said Hello!

9 The Maltings

Phone 01722 340344


And just in case the images I've included so far haven't tempted up, check out these yummy cakes

Mince Meat and Brandy, Mocha, Vanilla Flake, Blueberry (Gluten Free), Peanut Butter (Gluten Free) and finally Chocolate Egg - nom nom nom nom nom!


Cup cakes galoreCupcakes from Cupcake Heaven in Salisbury, Wiltshire. Mince Meat and Brandy, Mocha, Vanilla Flake, Blueberry (Gluten Free), Peanut Butter (Gluten Free) and finally Chocolate Egg


Professional commercial photography can make a real difference to a company and their online presence. If you are looking for some professional images please get in touch and please check out my commercial gallery. You can also find details on my prices etc here


]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Photography Salisbury cakes commercial cupcake heaven cupcakes heaven photo story photographer wiltshire Sat, 07 Dec 2013 17:42:16 GMT
Special Autumn Days Autumn Memories


The following words are from my wonderful guest blogger, Natalie. She booked me for a family shoot for her sister and herself and their families. The words here are hers, unedited. Please take the time to read them and watch the small AV of images afterwards. Thank you


My big sister Claire was always been there to make me feel better and look out for me as a child and as adults we became even closer when we unexpectedly became pregnant at the same time. We had our daughters Amelia and Megan on the same day in 2003 and since then have always been there for each other.
Nine and a half years later I thought that life was perfect, I had two more children Eliza and Evan and Claire had a son Oliver and was expecting a third child. About half way through her pregnancy it appeared that Claire was ‘not right’ at first sounding just like she had a cold, then rapidly her speech began to slur. She was referred to a specialist just before her due date and after 4 days of tests, received the awful news that she had Motor Neurone disease, a terminal illness with no cure. Thankfully the baby was not thought to be affected by the illness and Benjamin was delivered safely on October 1st 2012.
This time last year we were pushing our pushchairs around the shops in town and chatting over tea and cake in cafes like any other sisters. Despite the MND affecting her speech, Claire was still able to walk like anyone else and with the pushchair to hold onto a slight limp was the only outward sign of the disease. We even got disapproving looks from pensioners when we unloaded the pushchairs from the car in the disabled parking bays! but as Ben’s 1st birthday approached, I thought about the massive difference in Claire, who now uses a walker to get about the house and an electric wheelchair when she is accompanied out and how this has changed her children’s lives.
I wanted to mark the occasion with a family outing so that we could all have some fun with the children as we used to (this year has been hard on the children too). So I arranged a day at Bradgate Park, to go for a stroll in the autumn sunshine. Claire loves the autumn leaves. My joy of my nephews first birthday plans, were tinged with sadness though as I wondered how many birthdays he might have his mum here for and if it were not to be many, then how would he remember her?
A friend put me in touch with Barbara Leatham, a photographer; who I discovered has a portfolio full of breath taking countryside family photo shoots. So Barbara accompanied us for a weekend photo shoot. A family stroll to capture for Ben, Oliver and Amelia a time with their mum, being a mum. For Megan, Eliza and Evan a happy time with their Auntie and cousins, precious photos for them to cherish in the future. A birthday gift which I hope will be with Ben and all of us forever.
Thank you so much Barbara for helping me be there for my sister and for capturing the love and fun a family share forever.



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Autumn Children Couples Family Groups Happiness Kids Leatham Leicester Love Photographer Photography Portrait Salisbury Wiltshire Thu, 07 Nov 2013 10:50:00 GMT
Wiltshire Autumn Fun Wiltshire Autumn Fun


Edwards autumn shootEdward dressed up for his Autumn shoot by Wiltshire photographer Barbara Leatham

Autumn shoots are the most magical


"Delicious Autumn! My very soul is wedded to it. And if I was a bird I would fly about the Earth seeking the successive Autumns" - George Eliot


There is something really delicious about Autumn, since I was a child I loved the idea of crunching the leaves that had fallen in the night on the way to school, that sharp crisp noise that comes from being the first one to step on the leaves that had dried - just for you.

Having leaf fights with family and friends, being buried up to your neck, building a den, or a nest for animals;  so that your hair is covered in the bits, but you know you had had a fantastic day. Later to snuggle up with hot chocolate, eating toffee apples and knowing that there was always the chance of a late hazy indian summer that allowed you to take magical walks in the woods.

The earthy smell as you take in the deep breath of autumn, filling your eyes with the magic of the season, the colours that change so quickly, seem to be fleeting moments of joy to remind us of the summer we had just had. And finding your heart filled with happiness, the sense of anticipation, that Christmas is going to be just around the corner.

Or when the rains come and there are puddles, no child can resist the urge to put their wellies on and go splashing, after all, your skin is water proof and wet clothes can always go in the washing machine, but your day will be filled with fun memories of making big splashes, loud squishing noises and the permission to be young and care free, even for a little while.


Meet Edward and his mummy Sarah


Autumn Portrait of Edward and Sarah SinclairAutumn Portrait of Edward and Sarah Sinclair Walking through the farmers field, exploring, jumping, having fun. Tilshead, Salisbury, WIltshire by WIltshire photographer Barbara Leatham


Edward is a gorgeous little man who lives with his mummy and daddy, and some chickens, in my village. He was just the excuse I needed to go out with my camera. Short notice, wellies on, hat on, snuggled up warm ready for anything, let the adventure begin.


exploring the autumn fieldsEdwards checks to see if it's safe to venture into the autumn adventure ahead By Salisbury photographer Barbara Leatham


The intrepid explorer checks to see if it's safe to go out....

...I spy a puddle, oh no!


Puddle jumpingEdward jumping in the puddle with he bright red wellies By Marlborough, Wiltshire photographer Barbara Leatham


Come on mummy


Mummy and son puddle jumpingEdward and his mummy jumping in the puddles having a splashing time By Wiltshire portrait photographer Barbara Leatham


Can we go this way, I see some more puddles


Portrait of Edward and a multi colour umbrellaAutumn Portrait of Edward - splashing and jumping in the puddles, with red wellies and a colourful umbrella, he's ready for anything By Salisbury based wedding photographer Barbara Leatham


You're safe mummy, I've got my umbrella with me


Autumn portrait shoot with Edward SinclairAutumn Portrait of Edward - with his red wellies and a colourful umbrella, he's ready for anything By Salisbury based wedding photographer Barbara Leatham


I'm off to feed the dragons mummy


Feeding the chickensAutumn Portrait of Edward - feeding the chickens By Wiltshire based portrait photographer Barbara Leatham


He's bought his friends, best get some more food!


Feeding the chickens with EdwardAutumn Portrait shoot of Edward - feeding his chickens in the back garden By Salisbury based portrait photographer Barbara Leatham


Gene Kelly moments


Edward doing Gene Kelly, singing in the rainEdward doing Gene Kelly, singing in the rain. Autumn portrait shoot by Barbara Leatham, based near Devizes, WIltshire



Autumn photo adventure with EdwardEdward doing playing in the garden during his autumn shoot. by Wiltshire photographer Barbara Leatham


Adventures don't have to be complicated, and they are only limited by your own imagination



It was a magical day with this gorgeous young man and his wonderful mummy. Thank you both for being such fantastic models.

I know that my love of autumn is starting to rub off on my children and I'm sure that I can't be the only one to think that Autumn is the most magical time of the year.

An autumn shoot is an adventure, a time for laughter, fun and happiness. The joy comes from sharing time with people that we love, seeing their inner child come out when they realise that autumn is a secret door back to their childhood. It allows us to be explorers, adventurers, autumn fairies, den builders, silly monsters, time travellers and mystical animals. You are only limited by your own imagination.

Don't leave it another year to find the time to have your adventure, and if you book me for your shoot I promise when I come along for your magical adventure I will capture it so that you can keep escaping back to your amazing day time and time again.

You can contact me now to arrange booking your autumn shoot, It's October 11th 2013, the next few weeks will be full of amazing colours, the following few weeks will have more leaves on the floor for those awesome leaf fights, the bit in the middle is the best of all!


The wind is rising and the air is wild with leaves, we have had our summer evenings: Now for October Eves!

Humbert Wolfe, Poet 1885-1940



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Autumn Salisbury Wiltshire adventure bespoke family fun portrait wiltshire Fri, 11 Oct 2013 13:36:44 GMT
wiltshire through my eyes Inspired by Wiltshire

Business for me is usually commercial photography, family portraits and exclusive weddings, but there are days when I need to recharge my creative juices and just go out for fun and take photos.

You may have noticed that it's been quite a while since I last blogged, and I've taken the time to reflect on what I wanted to write about next. Some of my blogs have been about other people and their businesses, and other blogs have included stories of shoots that I've done such as weddings or engagement shoots. But this time I thought I'd share some of the imagery I take when I'm allowed to go off and explore, or, as is often the case, the images I take when I'm out with my family and friends.

As a family we moved to Wiltshire in April 2012, finally buying a home and setting down roots was paramount to us as we had been posted all over the UK and hadn't really found somewhere we could call home. Moving into Tilshead village and exploring Wiltshire has been an exciting adventure so far, and one that I hope will be a long lasting relationship of constant surprises.

I think that I'm proof that photographers who live and breathe their art don't so much have a day off, and when we do take time off work we chill by taking photos that we love for ourselves and not just stuff we get paid for (which is nice too!)

So below are a collection of images I've taken in Wiltshire over the last year. I do have some winter ones but I'm not going to post them here as you can find them on my previous post of Tilshead in the Snow

And please, leave a comment below, let me know which ones you love and why, and did any of them inspire you to go out and take your own images x


Skies over Salisbury by Wiltshire photographer Barbara Leatham

I was traveling home from a family shoot and I looked over to see an amazing sky covering Salisbury, so powerful, the kind of skies that make the colours in the world just explode with intensity.

Rainbow in WIltshire by Salisbury photographer Barbara Leatham

I'm lucky enough that I overlook fields front and back, so I get opportunities to see scenes like this one. The important thing is not to miss the shot when you see it!

Storm clouds at sunset near Orcheston and Tilshead by WIltshire photographer Barbara Leatham

Driving home from a shoot in Salisbury, just coming through Orcheston, near Shrewton, it was the end of the day, the sun was setting, but these beautiful, dramatic skies greeted me on the crest of the hill. I can still smell the threat of thunder in the air, it was fantastic.

A collection of skies over Wiltshire by Wiltshire wedding photographer Barbara Leatham

A collection of skies from the last year, all taken in Wiltshire. How do you choose your favourite when they are all so powerful yet different.

Cloud breaking sunset by Wiltshire photographer Barbara Leatham, taken in Tilshead

My inspiration for this post came from last nights sunset (taken August 15th 2013) I noticed there was a strong circle of orange shining through my drawn curtains, I dashed outside to see the sun seemingly burning a hole in the clouds, the rays of light were so defined, it was breath taking, and the photo doesn't truly do it justice.

Light after dark, storm skies in Wiltshire by wedding photographer Barbara Leatham

Just before the storms hit the village, these dark clouds seemed to fight with the sun for a while before defeating it.

The road between Tilshead and West Lavington, Wiltshire by photographer Barbara Leatham

There's a road between my village and the next and there's a bend in the road that allows for a split second to give you the "perfect" scene. I haven't quite nailed it yet, but I'll head back this autumn to try again, I'm hoping for some strong winds to blow the leaves wild.

Imber, the ghost village, in WIltshire by photographer Barbara Leatham

Access to Imber village is restricted, but the church there is one of the few buildings that is standing, a testament to the life it used to have there before taken over by the MOD

Tizzles, Spikies, taken near West Down Camp in WIltshire by wedding photographer Barbara Leatham

For years I've called these plants "spikies" and I'd driven past them for a few weeks thinking I should stop one day and take some photos. So what made me finally stop? It was the image in the top right where there was a stunning green plant, a contrasting juxtaposed moment to the rest of the scene. The mist cleared but not before I'd got these images.

The locks on the Kennet and Avon canal in Devizes by Wiltshire wedding photographer Barbara Leatham

I posted one of these images (far right) on my Facebook page and the amount of people who knew it was the set of Locks on the Kennet and Avon canal in Devizes really surprised me. Obviously this is a renowned set to go through. 

Amazing wind gliders and parachutists at the White Horse in Westbury, Wiltshire by wedding photographer Barbara Leatham

Wiltshire is very well known for it's White Horses, and this one at Westbury had the added thrill of being a place where you can glide or paraglide. The unexpected arial feast of gliders meant that I was there for much longer than I'd planned. I plan to go back again in the autumn to see the scenery changing and I'm hoping for a sunset that will set the skies on fire.

The secret scenery of Tilshead, Wiltshire by Barbara Leatham Photography

Walking around TIlshead with another villager allowed me to see my home in a new light. And not just because it was a winter sky either! It can look full of life in one direction and then desolate in another. 

Frosty mornings by Wiltshire photographer Barbara Leatham


Stunning grounds of Stourhead by Wiltshire photographer Barbara Leatham

This is taken at Stourhead, a rather beautiful National Trust venue not far from where I live. I've been back so many times I can't count, but I love it,

Every season is an inspiration. Our family day out always turns into an image fest!

The truly beautiful grounds of Stourhead by Wiltshire photographer Barbara Leatham

Another beautiful National Trust venue is Lacock Abbey, the home of Fox Talbot, for many he's the father of photography.

The doors of Lacock in WIltshire by photographer Barbara Leatham


inside the church at Lacock in Wiltshire by wedding photographer Barbara Leatham

Many of you will know that other than the Autumn, my favourite time of the year is May when the bluebells are out in the West Woods. I've never found another place quite like it, with carpets of bluebells that leave you breathless. Wiltshire is a total box of delights.

The beautiful bluebell woods at West Woods in WIltshire, by wedding photographer Barbara Leatham


Avebury Stones, WIltshire, by Barbara Leatham Photography

Avebury Stones and surrounding area are just beautiful. Like something out of a Tolkien Book it's a place that leaves you full of wonder

Avebury Stones in Wiltshire by Wiltshire Wedding photographer, Barbara Leatham

I bet you didn't know you can see elephants or horses in the Stone..... or maybe it's just my imagination?

My favourite scene from Avebury, by Wiltshire based Wedding photographer, Barbara Leatham

This is me relaxing with some of my family at Wilton House, near Salisbury. It's so rare for me to hand over the camera to someone else, but these images are very precious to me. My sincere thanks to Siobhan Murphy (fellow photography artist) for taking this for me.

Taken by Siobhan Murphy Photography Artist at Wilton House near Salisbury, Wiltshire. A small part of my family. Based in WIltshire, Barbara Leatham Photography

And my thanks to you for letting me share my favourite (so far) places of Wiltshire. I know there's going to be more that I'll add as the years go by, it's been a wonderful start to our lives here, we are very lucky.

Dashing back for more at Stourhead in Wiltshire by photographer Barbara Leatham Now, you don't have to dash off! If you would like to see more of my landscapes from all over the UK you can check them out in my Fine Art Landscape Gallery, if you like details and close ups you see more of what inspires me in my FIne Art Everything Else


Thank you for looking through, I hope they have caught your imagination and inspired you a little, don't forget to leave a comment below and let me know.


P.S. If you would like to use any of the scene images they are available to licence or buy, please contact me for more information, of you can buy limited edition images from my Fine Art Gallerys - including the links above.

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Art Landscape Salisbury Stunning skies Wedding Wiltshire bespoke photographer scenes storms weather Mon, 26 Aug 2013 15:34:30 GMT
Why you should have a pre wedding shoot Time to practice the "to have and to hold"


Pre wedding shoots, what is all the fuss?

Pre wedding shoots seem to have become the norm with many of us photographers over the last few years. Offering the chance to get the couple in front of our camera before their big day might have started out as an incentive to have customers book us over our competition, but many of us have realised the value of this precious time before the wedding day.


pre wedding shoot with Emma and Toby Mowatt in Reading, Berkshire by Salisbury, WIltshire wedding photographer Barbara Leatham

Putting a couple at ease is worth the time spent with them, but I also use the time to explore the style of the shoot for the wedding day, to find out more about the couple and how they are together, and to give them an idea what their wedding day will be like; filled with fun, moments of "lets go and do this quickly it'll be amazing" and showing them that they are allowed to hold hands. Although I get excited about what I do, and I may ask them to push their boundaries, really all I am there to do is get the best out of them so their wedding photos are the most amazing I can create for them.


Pre wedding shoot of Sally and Mark Peacock (PKO) in Kings Heath, Birmingham by Wiltshire wedding photographer Barbara Leatham

It's a my way of earning trust with them. It gives them a little time together to talk about how fantastic their day is going to be and how much they are looking forward to all the different bits. But mostly it's a chance for me to learn more about them, and for them to learn about me and how I work.


Pre wedding shoot with Nikki and Ashley MacDonald in Suffolk by Salisbury wedding photographer, Barbara Leatham

I use the images for little cards that I leave for family and friends on the wedding day; on one side there's the details of the online gallery where the wedding images will be posted once the couple have seen them, and on the other side is one of a selection of images from the pre wedding shoot that fit just perfectly into a wallet or purse.


Pre wedding shoot of Jayne and Mark at Kings Heath in Birmingham by Wiltshire and Salisbury based wedding photographer Barbara Leatham

But I have also had couples use an image on a signing board, or on their invitations, sometimes just as a framed image on their wedding day to decorate their reception.


Sara and Dan

If you are getting married and you haven't decided on your photographer yet you can take a look at my Wedding Gallery, or you can find out more information on my Wedding Page


Pre wedding shoot of Hannah and Mark in West Woods near Marlborough by Barbara Leatham Photography, a Wiltshire wedding photographer


And if you haven't seen my blog on one of the the weddings I did last year, these links will give you a really good idea of my work, and the kind of images that would be taken on your wedding day

Wedding blog Part One  Part two and Part Three 



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Pre wedding shoot Salisbury bespoke fun pre wedding salisbury wedding photographer wedding wedding photographer wiltshire Tue, 18 Jun 2013 12:40:57 GMT
Father's Day, parks, books shops, skimming, crosswords and more Pt3 Some Dad's are like fine wines...


...the older they get the better they are. Or Maybe they are like Peter Pan, and they never grow up; I'm certain that my husband is that kind of dad.

When I first started asking for fathers and children to help me with my "father's Day blogs" I expected to have responses from mums who thought their partner and children would be ideal, but what I got most was from older men who either had a son they loved or a dad that meant the world to them. These next two stories are prime examples of the replies to my add.

This is Peter and his son Chris. As a child growing up Chris spent a great deal of time here at Wilton House, where his Grandfather worked for many years on the grounds. Peter taught Chris to learn to ride his bike here and I gather it was just the most magical place to grow up.


going back to a childhood place on Father


Learning to ride a bike seems to be one of those things many parents are desperate for their kids to learn, but the actual teaching can sometimes be quite testing. It was fun to get these two reliving that trusting moment when a dad lets go so they can ride on their own. Almost a metaphor for many things in a parent and child's relationship - magical, inspiring and just amazing to see when children finally find their feet in lives little journeys.


Learning to ride a bike, dad, Peter, just making sure that Chris is sturdy on his pedals


letting go, dad letting go of the bike. Magical moments in a child life, no matter their age, or if they are actually riding a bike


Peter and Chris have a quietness about them that seems to come from their bond between father and son. The sense of respect and love that's built from shared times, lessons learned and ties of blood.


quiet times, talking about life and remembering fun times


His Son, father and son spending a moment of quiet


Peter and Chris showed me some of their favourite places around the grounds. WIlton House is a stunning setting to have as part of your childhood, if you are local or visiting then go in and see for yourself. Take your kids and make some magical memories. And if they ask you how you heard about them, please tell them my name x


Competitive times, Peter and Chris race to the bridge. No matter the age some men never grow up


We headed up to the most stunning the bridge; the boys were just walking along, then one turned to the other and there's a look of "race ya'!!" before they took off. Competitive and fun, when they finally stopped they were giggling like young kids who had broken some unsaid rule of adulthood.


breaking rules, sitting on the forbidden bridge, sometimes it


When we got up to the bridge Peter and Chris sat on the wall; it was one of those moments when you know you probably shouldn't, but that inner child that likes to break the rules a little was just too much to resist


father and son, sitting on the wall, who will stay and who will fall...


Peter was telling me that before he had his own business he was a fireman, and Chris has followed in his father's footsteps and now serves as a fireman himself. It seems that these two share more than a cheeky smile and a sense of humour...


Time to explore the grounds of Wilton House, Salisbury, Wiltshire


Come on son, no dawdling :)


Sitting by the river, quality time with dad


The river the bridge crosses, runs along a beautiful pathway towards other parts of the grounds. a scattering of benches, and wonderful views; it's easy to understand how important this place would have been to this family when growing up. Three generations coming to love the place, so much so that was just the perfect place to have this shoot. Sharing quality time with your parents is really important, to both of you. Hanging out with your dad away from the day to day stresses of life is such a perfect way to spend a day.


Skimming stones by the river in WIlton, Salisbury. Pete East and Chris East


What is it with boys and rivers?? Any excuse, as if they need it, to skim stones and see who can get the most skims in a throw. I can see that this is not a generation thing, from my previous fathers day blog, skimming is just the excuse boys need to get near the water and be kids again.


skimming stones, father and son sharing quality time together and reliving childhood memories


A father's love...


... can be seen in a look, a gesture, a smile and laughter; a sons pride in his father is mirrored in his eyes.

This is Steve and his dad, Trevor are a couple of cheeky chappies. Steve volunteered them for the shoot and after taking a sneaky peak at some FaceBook images I got the impression that these two are much more like best mates than father and son. Steve told me that his dad was seriously cool and brilliant to hang out with.


Trevor and Steve at the Grasmere Hotel in Salisbury, Wiltshire


Like peas from the same pod, they're obviously used to each others crazy ways.


Looking cool and suave. Trevor and Chris hanging out together


I'm wondering if there's ever a moment where these two are serious when they are together. There's no falseness to the smiles with these two, it starts on their faces, reaches their eyes and touches the hearts of everyone who sees them.


Doing a little synchronised Kung Fu


Steve has a history and passion for Kung Fu. He's been teaching his dad all about it. Perhaps a little cruel of me to suggest the pose when wearing jeans/trousers, but they stepped up and did themselves proud. I think I'd be impressed if I could kick like that now, ever mind when I was over 55 ;)



I asked the guys if they'd just pose a little by the water, and the seriousness lasted for a bout 30 seconds before they messed about. It was just too easy to join in the laughter, these two would never leave you feeling miserable.


The river at Grasmere House Hotel, Steve and Trevor trying to be serious


The Grasmere House Hotel is lovely, the grounds aren't huge, and the weather was trying to rain over our shoot, but that didn't stop Chris from finding another place to have fun. With Dad's direction, Steve tried to climb the tree, or at least hang upside down from it. Sadly (or thankfully depending on your point of view) the tree won and we had to walk away defeated - although still laughing!


Climbing trees, any excuse for family fun


When the shoot was originally arranged it was planned just to be Steve and his dad. Just as it happened, a happy accident at that, Jeni, Trevor's daughter, was here too. It was too good an opportunity not to get some images with her too.


Steve, Trevor and Jeni. Son, father and daughter


Fun, laughter and love. Dad with his children for father


You've got to agree that Trevor has THE most infectious smile. From ear to ear, splitting his face in pure joy. Awesome!


Round and round the garden like a teddy bear....


It seems that dad is very VERY ticklish. 


A really cool dad with his fun filled kids at the Grasmere House Hotel in Salisbury, Wiltshire


Kisses for you dad on Father's Day and every day



A fathers pride and the love of his children.


My sincere thanks to Peter and Chris as well as Steve, Trevor and Jeni, for your time and hard work, and for allowing me to share the wonderful relationships you all have. 


These blogs have been such a wonderful experience. Seeing dads/fathers and their children sharing precious time together. Before the children go to school. when they move away because of circumstances, when they grow up and leave the family home. Going back and spending time with your dad can be the best way to celebrate Father's Day this year. 


If you have been inspired by these blogs (See the first and the second father's day blogs) and you would like to book a shoot then please get in touch. Or you can find more information about portrait shoots on my Portraits Page.


Wishing you all a truly magical Happy Father's day on June 16th 



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Dad Fathers Fathers Day Fathers Day Shoot Photographer Salisbury Wiltshire bespoke family fun Wed, 12 Jun 2013 13:51:56 GMT
Father's Day, parks, books shops, skimming, crosswords and more Pt2 "My Dad Means The World To Me...."


This is what young Callum said to me when I asked him about his dad, Peter. Not bad going from a 16 year old really; in fact I think that if any of my kids said that about me at that age I'd be a big pile of goo from my heart melting.

Callum and his dad have a fantastic relationship, built on love and friendship, they are pretty switched on to how each other are. Callum lives in the Isle of Wight, and dad Peter lives near Newbury, so every second weekend they get together and have some top quality time together. Callum has a little sister he dotes on and a step-mum that he obviously gets on well with. But the magic comes from seeing son and dad together.


The old mill in Salisbury, Callum and Peter skimming stones together



Thoughtful and in tune, these two are on par with each other. It's pretty cool to see them together.


Competitive skimming with Callum and Peter at The Old Mill in Salisbury


Funny old thing, it really doesn't take too much before someone tries their luck and acts truly kid-like. It's all taken in fun, but you get the feeling that someone will get their own back soon enough...


Banter and fun with father and son at The Old Mill Wiltshire


Leap frog, dad and son have fun and laughing together


When I asked the guys what kind of stuff they got up to when Callum was younger there was an interesting collection of memories, football, crosswords and Jaffa-cakes...




There's a certain kind of magic with these two.



And even they are serious for two minutes they are still tuned into each other, Callum is a chip of the old block!



We had a little break during the shoot, and got the crossword out, I'm still not sure how good the answers where, but I got the distinct impression that it was the time together that was important and not if the answers where right.





I said for both of them to write something in the spaces for the other one to read, Callum obvious had no patience



The Old Mill is a lovely place to go as a family, besides an excellent place to skim stones, there's lots of nooks and crannies which were brilliant photo opportunities.



Tickle time!



For those who have never been in front of my camera, I love to get you working a little, so in this instance I asked Callum and Peter to hide behind the post from each other and we proceeded to pull as many silly faces as we could. I only stopped taking photos because I couldn't stop laughing, we all walked away from this giggling. Lots of people passing by left with smiles too, it's pretty infectious once you start.



It's hard to decide who is more proud of who with these two, this was such an awesome shoot to be part of (thanks guys) and at a time when some teenagers are notorious for neither wanting to be in front of the camera, or with their family. But sometimes there are true diamonds who prove that it's not a golden rule.



Wonderful times, wonderful memories


Hanging out in Salisbury, father and son, Peter and Callum doing piggy-back races


Having fun in Salisbury, Wiltshire, here Peter and Callum doing piggy-back races, Callum showing off going hands free


This time Callum gives his dad a piggy-back, it


An amazing father and son team, Peter and his teenage son, Callum, fantastic father


So you must be wondering about the Jaffa-cakes... Nothing too complicated, just Callum's totally favourite food ever! And he's even been teaching his little sister to love them too.


Jaffa cakes, fathers day shoot with Callum and Peter in Salisbury, Wiltshire


When I posted the Calling Cast online looking for a father and daughter/and/or/son to allow me to photograph them for this blog I was overwhelmed by the response I got. 
What surprised me most was the fact that the men got in touch, and it struck me that whether you are the dad or the son, there are times in your life that are cherished and mean the world to you both.
It showed me that I had thought that all the girls would want photos with their daddies, how wrong was I?? It was really cool that the guys responded and I was thrilled with the shoots I've done for these blogs.

Of all the shoots I've done, this one really tugged at my heart strings.
I LOVED the fact that Peter had put himself and his son forward, but the bit that made me truly inspired was when he told me that Callum felt this was a "way cool idea" and he was so up for it. He not only thanked me of the day of the shoot, but more importantly he thanked his dad that they had this time together.

I am always thanking my lucky stars that I get to do the job I love most in the world. Sometimes it's about creating beautiful images, but mostly it's about giving people the opportunity and the time together that very often our busy lives don't always allow for.  When you think that many families have both parents working, the kids are at school and we are all running at a hundred miles an hour, getting family time becomes a precious commodity.

Fathers Day may be just the excuse you need to have some time together, remember that you don't get this time back, but you can pause for a day  and take some time out together and make some magical moments.

If you would love to book some quality time with your family, create some magical moments and have some cherished photos please check out my Portraits page or contact me here


If you have loved this blog and want to be inspired even more, you can check out the first in this series of Father's Day blogs - Part 1








]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Day Fathers Fathers Day Fathers Day Shoot Photographer Salisbury Wiltshire Tue, 28 May 2013 06:30:00 GMT
Father's Day, parks, books shops, skimming, crosswords and more Every Day Should Be A Father's Day


Having time together

It was way back at the start of the year that I knew I wanted to do a blog leading up to Father's Day. I had done a mini blog on the Boston Tea Party (based in Salisbury) and during the shoot there was this amazingly gorgeous snippet of a scene, with a dad, obviously working hard on his laptop, and his daughter, sat next to him, with what looked like a laptop but was in fact an iPad. Either way, it was seriously cute.


Boston Tea Party Salisbury, father and daughter having breakfast


After blogging the BTP I asked Dad, (Hugh), if he and his gorgeous little girl, Lara, would allow me to photograph them for a Fathers Day blog. So four months later, back in Salisbury, we met for a coffee and the start of our morning adventure together....


salisbury photography shoot for fathers day blog in The Cosy Club


Lara and her daddy manage to spend some mornings together before she goes to nursery, which is really special for the both of them. Having lived and worked in the big smoke, Salisbury was a good place for the family to settle down and I think the slower pace of life is something they have embraced rather well.
Lara has a big sister who is already at school, but these moments for Lara and her daddy are very precious, all too soon Lara will be heading to school herself and the time alone with daddy will be even rarer.

We met at The Cosy Club where I got the impression that Lara and her daddy come often; she knows her way about the place, especially where the games and toys are, and she's rather fond of her baby latte (warmed milk with chocolate powder on top served in a little expresso cup - yum yum!)


building blocks at the Cosy Club in Salisbury


It's a very chilled out start to the day, there's no rush and it's a nice feeling


Time for tea, Salisbury makes a great place to catch up, chat, brunch, lunch or just having a cup of tea


Lara wanted to make sure I'd had all my tea before we left to check out their regular haunts around Salisbury town.


All gone daddy, baby latte drained to the last, it


Look, it's all gone! Can we go to the park now please?


On our way to the Queen Elizabeth park in Salisbury


Lara takes her daddy to the bridge on the way to the park, she's really chatty and very confident, she loves these mornings when they can play on the swings.



Stopping quickly to see the swan from the bridge, it's a great excuse to have a cuddle.


heading to the park, daddy and his daughter playing chase

Playing chase and heading to the park, we got distracted when we found this yellow door...

fun by the yellow door, pulling faces and making daddy laugh


...a great place to check out different expressions. Far too cute.


sitting on a bench by the riverside in Salisbury, wiltshire


It was a good time to practice "People Watching, is it every too early to learn this social skill?? But soon it was time to finally reach the park.


At the park with daddy. The Queen Elizabeth park in Salisbury


Lara and her daddy had lots of fun, there's always so much to do in the park and they seem to try out everything. 


spinning on the round-a-bout

on the swings, push higher daddy

climbing the spiders web, daddy needs to help, it

kisses for daddy, lots of love x

With kisses for her daddy, Lara has had a great morning; but it makes you really hungry with all that running about, so we head to The Boston Tea Party for a little refreshment...


fun at the park, but it


Lara likes checking out the pictures in the paper with her daddy, she's at that wonderful age where she thinks she can read, so she makes up magic sounding words from the ones on the pages. It's enchanting and full of joyful innocence - it's wonderful being young and carefree, I think that being around young children is a great way to remember that life is full of happy little moments that can carry you through the day.


time for tea, and time for tickles

time to go to the book shop


After the snack break, we headed to the local book shop. A magical place that Lara takes her daddy to. Some days during the week they have story time and other events for young readers. Lara obviously loves it here. There's fish in a built in fish tank, and a box in the middle of the room with lots of activities, noisy and fun, it's a delight to watch the two of them together exploring.


a visit to the book store, checking out the fishes in Salisbury Waterstones shop

exploring the toys in the bookshop

The shoot ended here, but it wasn't the end to Lara's day with her daddy. They were heading for lunch before she was taken to nursery, but I had to leave. It was wonderful to see them together; but time can creep by so fast, and all too soon you look back and realise that these moments stopped but you're never quite sure when it happened.

At the end of this shoot I realised just how important it is to have time with your dad. Sadly for me, I know I can never have time with my dad again. I lost him almost three years ago.
I have so few photos with him, I found some of my brother and I when we were kids when we were going through his things; day when we had visited my grandparents and some odd days out, but there were so few.

Many would say that there are so few images in our pasts because photography wasn't so popular as it is now, and to some extent that is true, however, now we have the problem where there are more people taking photos, but often there is a parent who is not in the shots simply because they are the ones taking the photos.

This Father's Day (June 16th) make a special effort to have time with your dad. And remember to take some photos, you'll never get this time back once it's gone, thinking you'll do it tomorrow or another day, or another year, might mean that there will be a tomorrow when you can no longer have this time together.

When you are thinking about what to get your dad this Father's Day make it something you can't wrap up in paper and tape, make it something you can wrap up in happiness. A ton of memories, a sprinkle of laughter, a day of togetherness all wrapped up in love and joy x

I will be blogging some more shoots over this week, all fathers spending time with their kids. keep an eye out, there are some wonderful magical moments, and some tender memories relived from childhoods.


You can now read Father's Day blog two and three for more inspiration. If you love the images and you think you would love to have a magical time with your dad then why not book a shoot, you can find details on my shoots and prices on my Portrait Page


Happy Father's Day x



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Boston Tea Party Cosy Club Fathers Salisbury children daughter day family fun photography wiltshire. Fri, 24 May 2013 16:30:00 GMT
Easter Treats It's Good Friday! Two more days and it will be ever chocoholic's dream day, Easter Sunday.

I wanted to do a blog on a Chocolatiers, and I found one in Salisbury who allowed me a little time today to tantalise you with their collection of cocoa treats. Based just a few 100 yards from the Salisbury Cathedral, Salisbury Chocolate Bar and Patisserie will great you with yummy smells of chocolate and warm welcoming smiles from their staff. 

I must warn you, if you are tempted to pop in after seeing these images, they are only open Saturday. Easter Sunday they will be closed.




This is one seriously HUGE piece of chocolate, the other half of the egg is under the table - pretty amazing stuff.



A bird of more manageable size, these little ducks looked almost too good to eat. But if you could resist you would be tempted my the spring flowers, the nests or the bunnies



Go on, take a closer look




These are all wrapped up and ready to go. I was totally enthralled with the tiny Hot Cross Bunds made out of marzipan, totally gorgeous



On the counter was this amazing bowl of tiny chocolate eggs. Good job I don't work there, far too many temptations, this bowl would have been empty by the end of the day!



Eggs, bunnies, eggs, chicks, oh and some eggs. Everything you could want for Easter, catering to all tastes






The room has a scattering of eggs just about everywhere, including hanging from the ceiling!




These three boxes are full of Easter Goodies, ready and waiting for the customer to take home and surprise three very lucky recipients. Salisbury Chocolate Bar & Patisserie are happy to make up orders for their discerning clients, adding the little touches, like the tiny eggs that tie the labels to the boxes.
These attentions to detail all adds to the service you would expect from this shop, nothing is too much effort; such as the fact that they let me in before the shop opened to the public so I could do my shoot (which I thank them gratefully), and in the process had numerous customers "nip in" just for a couple of bits, but rather than locking the door, the customers got served.



People were queuing up to get in as I left, it's obviously a popular place to go for chocolate treats. The excitement of Easter apparent by the faces pressed up against the windows.

You may have noticed that there aren't many staff members in my images, I can promise you that they were there. and to prove it, a fleeting glimpse of the owner



I would like to give my thanks to everyone this morning in helping me with creating some of these shots, and also for their patience while I pottered about.

I would like to wish everyone a very very Happy Easter. I hope the Easter Bunny leaves you something nice, and if you're very lucky it will have come from The Salisbury Chocolate Bar & Patisserie


You can find out more about this wonderful shop (and even order online) here  And if you pop in to see them, please tell them I said hello :)


33 High Street

01722 327422


]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) The Salisbury Chocolate Bar & Patisserie chocolate easter salisbury Fri, 29 Mar 2013 21:32:32 GMT
A wedding that's a cut above Pt 3 This is the final part of the wedding blog. It's all about the party

If you haven't read Pt 1 here's the link Bridal Prep and you can find Pt 2 here The Service


Time to Party

Arriving at the reception





A little time with the guests before the wedding breakfast



Table treats



A little confetti and kisses



All together x



Some serious photos of the wedding party...



...very serious...



...seriously serious x



The stunning dress on a gorgeous bride, Mrs M, you're looking amazing!




Stealing some time with the Bride and Groom









A cheeky moment














Time for the speeches, although I've not included the images here - it would have meant another blog post, but needless to say, it was full of laughter and tears of joy (and nothing too incriminating)



Someone bet the bridesmaids couldn't beat the boys in a race - not competitive at all...



Some of the boys striking a pose and mainly just looking gorgeous



Oh yes, work it boys!!



Girls really aren't competitive are they? Although the boys didn't seem to mind



And in the mean time, it's time to get ready to cut the cake...




...and the first dance...





...and the band played on




This was such a fantastic wedding to shoot. I still smile when ever I see the images and I love the fact that I'm still in touch with the family. Shooting a wedding allows you an insight into someone else's world, their loves, hopes and dreams as well as their worries and their fears. But the time you have with them allows you to capture forever something totally special and unique. 

Every wedding tells a story, a coming together of two families and the hope that this day, this totally special day is just a start for them, a beginning


My thanks to Emma and Toby for allowing me to share their day with you all. 







]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Berkshire Reading bespoke bridal prep emma mowatt photographs toby wedding Thu, 28 Mar 2013 20:52:45 GMT
A wedding that's a cut above Pt 2 As promised from Pt 1, this is all about the wedding. With guests arriving, then the bridesmaids, finally the bride and her father, through to the service itself and the happy ever after. 

If you haven't already ready Pt 1 you can find it here. Bridal Prep


The BEST MEN and the groom


Wedding photography showing groom and best men


guests gathering at the wedding of emma and toby


wedding guests waiting outside the church in Reading, Berkshire


It was an incredibly sunny day, even in these black and white images you can see the contrast 


wedding guests waiting for the bridal party


There was an exciting buzz in the air, everyone wondering when the gorgeous bride was going to turn up


Groom and vicar having a chat prior to the wedding service


bridesmaids arriving in the vintage car at the church


The Bridesmaids


the bridesmaids, the best men, the ushers and the groom


the groom and best men laughing just before the bride arrives


With Best Men like these what chance does Toby really stand?? 


the groom takes a cheeky nip of whiskey


Maybe the Best Men have had a good example??


the beautiful vintage car arrives with the bride and her father


The Bride, the Bride, here comes the Bride


Father of the bride and the gorgeous bride arrive to an audience of children


Greeted with cheers, smiles and waves from the nursery children who had waited to see the "princess"




walking down the isle, the first time the groom sees his bride


The wedding service


emma and toby at the alter


the bride and groom lighting the candle


saying their vows


The service was as much fun as the rest of the day


with this ring


i thee wed. Giving of the wedding rings


Wouldn't you just love to know what was said?? Me too


you can now kiss the bride


You may kiss the bride, well he certainly did. I can honestly tell you that the whole room was buzzing and erupted with applause. Truly magical


the signing of the register, it


Even the legal bit was gorgeous, a very very happy union 


mr and mrs, the bride and groom walk down the isle as husband and wife


Kissing at the door of the church in Reading, Berkshire


Mr and Mrs Mowatt x


Husband and wife head off to the reception


Time to get to the party!


I promise I wasn't taking the photo this time, instead I scared the bridesmaid when I asked her to get the shot for me while I drove.
It shows you that the skills of a photographer far exceed just "pressing a button" - maybe the skills of a wedding photographer will be good for another blog. Until then, I hope I've shown how the service, although can sometimes can be seen as a solemn affair, it can still be filled with smiles, laughter and fun.


I can't wait to show the final part, it's all about the party - and the cake - and the dancing - and most importantly, the love x


You can find part three here The Party  




]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Berkshire Reading bespoke bridal prep emma mowatt photographs toby wedding Wed, 27 Mar 2013 14:07:00 GMT
A wedding that's a cut above I wanted to share a wedding shoot that I did in 2012. It's coming up to their first anniversary and every time I catch up with the bride we always talk about it.

Emma is my hair dresser, and she's wonderful. She's married to a lovely man called Toby and their wedding day was just amazing.

Even thought I had technically hung up my camera for weddings, when I got asked to do this wedding I just couldn't refuse. Here is a collection of images taken from the day. It shows the beginning, middle and end of the day, but even now I look back on these images and smile, reliving the joy of the day and the love that was everywhere for this couple.

It was a true privilege and honour and I'm so glad to did this wedding x


I've broken the photos into three parts, the Bridal Prep, The Wedding and The party, this is Pt 1


Bridal Prep


brides favourite childhood teddies


Even the bears were washed ready for the big day


The brides shoes


Time to get ready


watching the brides maids getting their hair styled


emma getting her make up done by Liv Burton Hair and Makeup


Make-up by Liv Burton


Drinking a little champers before the bride gets into her dress. Very vintage


Gorgeous, even in PJ's and slippers


fantastic bride moments, smiles with close friends


wedding flowers, grooms button holes and a message from the groom


Flowers, with love


the florist delivering the wedding flowers which includes a flower menu


details of flowers, mauve, pinks and vintage colours


bridal hair, time to get some finishing touches


A very chilled time with friends and family




the brides brother and the make up artist, a perfect combination


Brides brother just making sure everything is good


the brides jewellery, garter, earrings, bracelet and perfume, all the little details


It's all about the details...


The maid of honour putting the bride into her dress, doing up the buttons


...and the dress


bridal prep almost done, a quick check in the mirror to reflect


beautiful vintage wedding dress on a stunning bride


A moment of quiet thought...


putting on the garter and sharing laughter


...that lasts nearly a whole minute before laughter fills the house again


putting on the wedding shoes, never easy in your wedding dress


the first time the brides dad sees his little girl in her dress, magical wedding day moment


Daddy's little princess on her big day 


You can find part two of this blog here The Service and you can find part three here The Party

If you are planning your wedding and are interested in booking me you can find all my wedding details on my wedding page



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Reading bespoke bridal prep emma mowatt photographs toby wedding Tue, 26 Mar 2013 22:15:53 GMT
Mothers are like Flowers Pt 2 As promised on my last blog, a step by step photo essay of a florist putting together a beautiful bouquet of flowers.

If you haven't read Pt 1 yet then remember to pop along and read it before you leave


The start of each day there is a collection of orders that need to be created ready for delivery or pick up. Customers have the choice of picking from a design book but there is also a bespoke service, where the ladies who work at Gullicks use their years of experience to create something personal and stunning.

Heather kindly showed me how she makes a hand tied bouquet, one that isn't standard in the design book, but one that is inspired for Mother's Day.

First, the decision of which flowers to use. Heather picks a select colour pallet of blues, purples and pinks, but she also uses an accent colour of white to keep the design looking dynamic.


It's easy to get excited already just by the flowers chosen, tulips, hyacinths; gorgeous deep pinks, purples and blues...


A quick snip of the scissors and she's got her ribbon ready for tying. Time to get things in place, preparation prevents mistakes and saves times.

It was the small attentions to detail and care that struck me quite strong. Heather 'wires' the more delicate flowers. A sign of quality from your florist, a sign that they care about how the flowers will last once they have been delivered.


The choice of green foliage was as important as the flowers themselves. A mixtures of complimentary hues and textures to work with the bouquet.

Heather starts to construct and build the bouquet. It's easy to see why this is called a Hand Tied Bouquet. Heather tells me that sometimes the bouquet can get so big you have to have help with someone else holding it while it's being made. As it is, this one is almost to Heather's maximum hold. (I'm rather glad it's not me doing this I've rather small hands, I think I'd be asking for help all the time!)

A little tweaking to make sure the flowers are in place and then it's time to tie off the stems and secure the design.

Next, preparing the wrapping...


...with a couple of staples to keep the fold sharp, it's nearly time to wrap the bouquet.


First, the stems are trimmed so that the bouquet can stand on it's own.


I've come to the conclusion that you need to be a contortionist to wrap a bouquet. Heather is fast and adept in her skills, she makes it look incredibly easy. Once the fancy wrapping is fixed, a clear wrapping is also fixed so that water can be added to the bouquet to ensure the flowers reach the recipient in perfect condition.


Heather's attention to detail means that even with the water the bouquet stands up on it's own.
The final bits of detailing are added. Some cerise ribbon tied to the bouquet; some "after care" instructions tied to the bag, and then the flowers are ready for delivery.


If you're received flowers on this Mother's Day you can rest assured that if they came from Gullicks Florist in Salisbury, they'll have been hand picked, designed, wrapped and tweaked to within and inch of it's life, and then delivered with much love. 

The ladies who work here tirelessly every day are proud of their work, and justifiably so. Having spent just two mornings with them it has bought it home to me that artists come in all shapes and sizes. Our mediums may be different but our passions aren't.

My sincere thanks to Anita and her wonderful ladies for allowing me a glimpse into their amazing world, and for letting me share with you all how talented they are,



You can visit Gullicks Florist in Salisbury Monday to Saturday. you can find more inspiration on their website

109 Fisherton Street

Telephone: 01722 336575

Opening Hours:
Monday to Friday 8.30 - 5pm
Saturday 8.30 - 4pm







]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Florist Gullicks Salisbury mother's day photographic story wiltshire Sun, 10 Mar 2013 01:20:18 GMT
Mothers are like flowers... pt 1 This week I've been in Salisbury and spending time with the wonderful ladies who work at Gullicks Florist. This wonderful shop has been in Salisbury for over 100 years, with the current owner, Anita, having been there for the last 13 years.

Anita has an army of consummate florists working with her. Heather, Kieun, Vicky and Allison; each lady skilled and accredited in creating the most stunning of arrangements; and seriously fast too.
I think I would be still picking out the flowers when they would be adding the ribbons and finishing touches. It really is a pleasure to watch such accomplished artisans putting into practice their talents.

The first time you walk into the shop you are overwhelmed by the scent of the flowers as well as the stunning display of varieties that frame the walls of the shop.

It was just after 9.30 when I turned up on Tuesday and the shop had already been open for an hour. Scattered about the shop were the latest delivery of flowers. Leading up to Mother's Day means the deliveries are bigger than normal and it is a daily occurrence leading up to the weekend; it's an amazing atmosphere to be in. The five ladies, each moving about the space like a delicate dance of efficiency that comes from working together for a long time, each have an understanding of what needs to be done with the skills of experience that comes from people who love their work.


The flowers and foliage are taken out of their plastic packaging that they arrive in. They are trimmed, the excess leaves removed and then wrapped in brown paper before being put into buckets or tubs of water. Some of the flowers are put out the back in a chilled part of the building to keep the flowers in a mild hibernation until they are needed to create customers orders. Others are put out in the shop ready for sale immediately.
Each part of the delivery is checked and double checked against the delivery list. It is important to get the shop cleared so they can start creating the stunning bouquets and baskets that have been ordered by customers for that day's delivery.
They know that tomorrow will be bringing another deliver and so it will start all over again.


Just a few examples of the flowers delivered on Tuesday and Wednesday. Truly amazing colours. On their own they are stunning, when they are picked and presented in bouquets they are breathtaking. A testament to the knowledge of the ladies who work in this shop of magic. 


Along with the flowers, the ribbons, and the packaging that ties the finite details together. Often it's the choices of ribbon, the card or the trimming that can complete the order and make it look so personal. Whether instinctive or just experience, there's little wavering on the decisions made by these ladies. You know that when you order flowers from here it will have been picked, created and presented with love.


Gullicks Florist shop window has a stunning display for Mother's Day (as always) with a delectable selection of inspirational ideas. From Tea cups with Tea Roses, Boxes of scented delights, baskets of glorious flowers and much more; if you are short of ideas this is surely the place to come, Gullicks is a mere two minutes walk from the Salisbury Train station, pop in and say hello, you will be warmly welcomed. (Address at the bottom of this blog).


I'll be blogging a step by step bouquet created by Heather and destined for Mother's Day ready for Sunday. Come back and visit soon! Until then, get inspired with more ideas at Gullicks Florist website

You can now find the second part to this blog here

109 Fisherton Street

Telephone: 01722 336575

Opening Hours:
Monday to Friday 8.30 - 5pm
Saturday 8.30 - 4pm







]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Florist Gullicks Salisbury mother's day photographic story wiltshire Fri, 08 Mar 2013 14:43:21 GMT
For the love of it Pt 3 - the final chapter For those of you who haven't read parts one and two, please read them first so you can appreciate the whole story. You can find them at the following links


Elinor called me on Friday with the exciting news that the sliver work had come back from the hall markers; could I pop over to shoot the final part of the story so she could have the piece ready for Valentines?
It felt providential as this was a story about love. The love of a jeweller; the reinvention of a loved piece of jewellery, and my love as a photographer, feeling that photographic stories can say more than my simple words. Getting this all ready for Valentines, a day devoted to love.



It was agreed that Elinor would set three of the most difficult stones. It was important that she concentrated on them to ensure they were set without problems, and as small as I am, hovering with a lens can be added pressure that delicate work doesn't need. So when I arrived I found Elinor prepping to set the final stones.


It was the little things that caught my eye. The fact the clamp had specific places where Elinor put it for different needs during the process. The use of a hair dryer (and I thought this was the sole area of hair dressers and photographers...) The use of blue-tack to help position and reposition the stones. All of these things showed the love this lady has for her work.

Elinor puts the silver piece on to what looks like grey plasticine, but is in fact called "Thermo Loc" or the common name is called "setters cement".
The hair dryer is used to soften it enough to allow the pendant to be held so that the stones can be added and set in place.


Using much loved and well worn tools, such as this Bezel Pusher, she begins to secure the stones into place. Attention to detail doesn't come close to the care that Elinor shows when she's doing this work 


This mushroom shaped tool, a Bezel Roller, continues the setting, bending the silver over tighter to hold the stones in their mounts. There's a sense of things really coming together with every tiny little tap of the hammer.


I smiled when Elinor told me that one of her specialist pieces of equipment is a piece of a tooth brush. Part of the experience that a jeweller picks up is the knowledge that some stones are so big, or fragile, or both, that the normal commercial tools means there's an increased risk of danger of damaging the stones. It is assumed that a jeweller will find their own "specialist" tools that are suited to specific jobs. I have to say, it worked a treat and seemed a reasonably natural choice. After an intense period of tapping the stones are secure and you can see that the piece is going to look stunning. It is this attention to detail that separates Elinor from her peers.


Once the stones are set you can see that the edges need to be smoothed. Traditionally a jeweller uses a horn shaped tool called a Burnisher. With small repetitive movements, the sliver is smoothed and finished to a high quality. This is a hugely time consuming way to finish a very intricate piece of jewellery, so Elinor chooses to use her years of experience to finish the piece using more up to date methods.


We talked at length about the decision to use the polishing wheels. She tells me that it would only be with years of experience that she would ever consider this as an option to finish a piece. it is a true reflection of her skills that she finishes this piece in this method and it looks stunning.


Putting the final polish on the piece, it's almost ready for the client.


Isn't it stunning.


From these simple pieces of raw silver, through the design skills of this very talented young lady, to the final piece, this really has been a truly inspiring journey to capture.



If you want to see more of Elinor Cambray's work, please go along to her website

Or you can visit her at Fisherton Mill, 108 Fisherton Street, Salisbury, SP2 7QY

I would like to take this opportunity to give my sincere thanks to Elinor, for her time, her patience, and for allowing me the chance to cover this amazing story. It's very hard to walk out of her work space and not feel the desire to own something she has created. Her work is amazing, inspiring and just simply beautiful.




]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Cambray Elinor Salisbury bespoke fisherton mill jeweller narrative silver wiltshire Wed, 13 Feb 2013 22:50:52 GMT
For the love of it Pt 2 If you haven't already read the first part of this story, please check out the following link


I had a call from Elinor telling me that the silver had finally been delivered and did I want to head over, nothing was going to stop me. So I dropped the kids off at school and hot footed it over to capture the next instalment of this story.


Elinor had been busy already with mapping out the different pieces. Measuring out the silver, bending and manipulating each piece into it's required shape. Then some filing, and sanding (with each sanding block a little finer every time) and finally polishing to a high shine. This is not a five minute job.


Once all the pieces have been built, Elinor then puts them into place on the 'map' ready. You can start to visualise just how beautiful this piece will be, and the stones aren't even set yet...


It takes a little while for Elinor to decide which pieces to start joining together. This is the kind of knowledge, understanding of how the piece can play against each other, that makes her a mistress of her craft.


It's amazing, and mesmerising to see how the elements of the pieces coming together start to define the uniqueness of this piece.
I learned a few little helpful hints while watching (and asking questions) like why Elinor has to heat the whole piece every time she binds one piece to another. It ensures there are no weaknesses in the silver - it's tempered and strong. It's just so fascinating.


With all the tarnish from the heating process, it's hard to imagine that this will soon be polished up and glimmering ready to wear.  I think you must have a true passion for this work to create such intricate pieces.


The soldering leaves some rough edged that need to be taken down and smoothed. Also the back needs to be prepped ready for the piece of silver that will form the loop where the chain will go through so this piece can be worn.


Elinor preps the silver by rolling it through the press, hammering it and bending it into shape. Compared to the rest of the piece this is quite small, but it is very important.


Tried, filed and tried again. The little piece of silver is made to measure and fit perfectly. Then it's a case of bind the two pieces together.


Using a bonding solder that melts at a lower temperature than the other solder Elinor had been using; it looks like a soggy clay and it also smokes quite a bit when it reaches temperature; it doesn't smell of roses, but it creates great images.


Finally, the completed sliver work is finished and goes into the 'pickle' to prepare it ready for polishing. From the pickle it dries in the bowl of gravel looking cereal. 
Afterwards, one of the longest processes of the whole job begins; with hand tools and electrical ones, the polishing starts. This is when the piece starts to come to life. It'll be ready for the stones to be set, but first the sliver needs to head off to London to be Hallmarked.

Patience is a very important part of this whole process, whether polishing or waiting, some things that are worth doing well can often take time.

I've had a call from Elinor to arrange for the final shoot, which is when she'll set the stones into the mounts. I'm really looking forward to seeing this piece finished. It's been a wonderful journey and although I've got a little more knowledge, I'm also aware how just how much there is still to know about this craft.

If you want to see more of Elinor Cambray's work, please go along to her website

Or you can visit her at Fisherton Mill, 108 Fisherton Street, Salisbury, SP2 7QY


Importantly, watch out for the third and final instalment to see how this piece looks when it's finished.





]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Cambray Elinor Salisbury bespoke family fun jeweller silver wiltshire Thu, 07 Feb 2013 21:47:49 GMT
For the love of it.... Let me introduce to you to the lovely, and very talented Elinor Cambray. 

Elinor is a bespoke jeweller based at the Fisherton Mill gallery, Salisbury, where she has a working studio on the first floor.

Her work station is covered in equipment and tools that look like they could be as much implements of torture as they are devices to create the most stunning pieces of jewellery.



I was very taken with some very pretty pieces on the desk. beautiful in their own way. Diamond tipped filling/drill bits, tiny but gorgeous.


I asked Elinor if she would mind very much if I did a photographic story based on her next commission. I wanted it to be something that was personal and perhaps even linked to Valentines day, but certainly linked to love.

Elinor's current commission is from a lady, whose husband had bought her a Peridot necklace, but she wanted it revamped because she wasn't wearing it. The Citrine was bought by her husband while overseas. She has asked Elinor to reset the stones in a new design, that allows both the peridots and the citrine to be worn together; this is a great opportunity to bring the two pieces together into something individual and wonderful. 



I loved this story instantly. All too often Valentines is aimed at people who have been together for a short time, or even to people who are in love from afar. But what of the people who have been together for years and what does love mean to them?

The design had already been created for the new piece. Elinor draws out her template ready for building up the individual pieces. Her attention to details is inspiring. 

Then she starts removing the delicate peridot stones from their old setting.

People often ask why she doesn't just use the old setting, but she explains that the metal has so much solder on it that it's not worth much beyond scrap. It is also much more work than just removing the stones and building again from scratch.

The saw she uses is so fine it can hardly be seen. It takes patience and skill to go through the old setting without damaging the stones. Elinor does this four times, slowly and delicately. It's mesmerising to watch and a testament to her ability.


Once the stones are all free Elinor starts to construct the new mounts. Not a great fan of the claw style mounts, she makes a new setting, called a "rub-over" or "bezel," for each of the stones to sit in. 


Folding the silver around the stones to get the shape and size is just the start of the process. Once shaped and soldered, a smaller inner piece has to be made to sit snug inside so that the stones can sit without fear of dropping out. It looks simple, but I know that the years of training means that it only looks easy with experience.



Like an alchemist, the chemistry of metal, heat and the skills of an artist, the magic starts to come to life



Once the pieces are shaped, soldered and allowed to cool, they soaked in a bath of "pickle" to remove the oxides off the surface of the metal. Afterwards they sit in a bowl of gravel looking cereal to dry out.

From there Elinor chooses her weapons of choice to sand, craft, shape and bring to a glossy shine each of the settings.



There's a leaf in the design, delicate and a key component of many of Elinor's pieces. 

After hammering the silver a little, the shape of the leaf is drawn on the silver. The saw is prepped and finally, carefully, it is cut out to size. The edges are smoothed before having the leave design imprinted on the surface.


After going through the press, the silver comes out with the leaf pattern set. A quick file to reshape and ensure the edges are smooth and so another piece of this pendant is ready.

I love the idea that this story is about the reinvention of an existing piece, that in a society where there are too many people who will just go and get a replacement, this lady was keeping something precious to her and reusing them, making them viable, and keeping the love alive.

The old days of make do and mend seem to be coming back, and what better way to show this than at Valentines, where too often the shops can be filled with consumables that don't last and won't stand the test of time; but buying something that will last a life time or more, even with a make over, shows the depth of love that some people can share. 

I'll be heading back this week to see how the rest of the pendant comes together. Watch out for my next blog


You can see more of Elinor's pieces on her website:

Or you can visit her at Fisherton Mill, 108 Fisherton Street, Salisbury, SP2 7QY



]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Cambray Elinor Salisbury Wedding Rings bespoke jeweller wiltshire wedding Sun, 27 Jan 2013 12:02:13 GMT
Tilshead in the snow I happen to have moved to a wonderful village in Salisbury called Tilshead. It's got approximately 150 houses and has an eclectic style that makes it as unique as the wonderful people who live in it.


As you can imagine, Friday we had a little bit of snow (which I had been hoping for, purely for photographic reasons) and it turned the village into something truly wonderful.


I went out with my family, heading to the other end of the village where there's a wonderful hill perfect for sledging on, and on the way I photographed some of the beautiful cottages and houses. Here are a few of them x



I feel very lucky to live here. So my thanks to everyone who has made my family and I feel so welcome x

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) January Tilshead cottages fun home snow snow day village Sun, 20 Jan 2013 10:19:07 GMT
"Boston" for a cuppa I was taking five minutes out from my much needed office sorting day yesterday when I spied a comment on FaceBook from the Boston Tea Party (in Salisbury) An invitation to enjoy the Monday when all the kids had gone back to school. Except mine hadn't...
So, working on the theory that if I made a comment I'd have to deliver on it, I apologised for not being able to make it yesterday, but said I would be in today instead. The idea of the hot chocolate and home made cookies was just too strong.



When you walk in you are met with the delicious smell of coffees, teas, home baked goodies and the warm greetings of Thom (the assistant manager) and Joe, the Latte crafter extraordinaire. I also met, fleetingly, the lovely Imogen, who, I found out, had posted the initial comment on their Facebook page ( She was running about non stop baking the lovely cookies and other tasty morsels.

Your first decision, if you can get past the cake counter, is what drink to have... Lots of teas and coffees, and not forgetting the hot chocolate (which I was on a promise for).


But very soon you're tempted back to the naughty treats that are there to tempt you off your diet. But I figured that as I was meeting my friend there, she could have my calories and I'd have hers, that way they didn't count.


The atmosphere of the Boston Tea Party is relaxed, welcoming, friendly and just pretty all round wonderful really.



When I moved to Wiltshire back in April (2012 - I can say last year now) I met up with my friend, Louise, to have a nosy around Salisbury and a good old catch up. We spent our lunchtime in the BTP, so it seemed right that it was Louise I was going to share my "the kids have gone back to school, yippee" moment with.

We both opted for the hot chocolate and a slice of spiced apple cake.
AND - Oh My Goodness - how lovely was this! The hot chocolate was the kind that has a little bit of bitterness it is so it's not too sweet, and the cake, moist, full of flavour and just yummy. (very very yummy). Loaded with apples, spices and walnuts. 

But one of the best bits was watching Joe, (you remember him, the Latte crafter extraordinaire....) create some stunning art on the tops of the drinks


I got the impression that he could have done this all day long. He had great pride in his creations, to the point where one of the hot chocolates didn't look as good as the other, so he made another one for us. Wonderful!


One of the things that the BTP is also known for is their "tell us what you think" board, which is right by the counter. It's amazing to see how people have expressed their thoughts, sometimes in words, often in doodles and drawings. I asked Thom and Joe to point out their favourites, but really, the best thing is for you guys to pop in yourself, order a drink, a bite to eat and add your own thoughts to their board.

I know that I haven't met all the team at BTP Salisbury but I'm sure I will when I pop in again then next time I'm in town, after all, there's always time for a hot drink, with friends.

My thanks to Thom, Joe, Imogen and all the team I haven't met yet. I'll see you guys soon










]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Boston Tea Party Hot Chocolate cake coffee friends salisbury wiltshire Tue, 08 Jan 2013 19:04:07 GMT
Always better with friends I am truly truly lucky, to be able to do the job I love most in the world, and better yet, to create something precious for clients who are first and foremost, friends.

Fiona and I met at the school gates, her oldest daughter and my youngest son were in the same class. Occasionally you can meet people who you have known for a very short amount of physical time, but in reality there is the feeling as if it has been all our lives.

Over the two years since we met she has seen my work evolve and change, and many was the time where she said she "really must book a shoot for the family" Well knock me over, if we didn't finally get around to it last month.

Fiona Jason Becky and Fran Chamberlain 2012

It started off really quietly, and completely professionally...

Fiona Jason Becky and Fran Chamberlain 2012

That lasted for about five whole minutes, it seemed the girls had other ideas!

Fiona Jason Becky and Fran Chamberlain 2012


Fiona Jason Becky and Fran Chamberlain 2012

I figured that to gain some sort of control I should split them up, in the process I managed to get some timeless images of the girls that I know mum and dad are going to cherish.

Fiona Jason Becky and Fran Chamberlain 2012

And better yet, a photo of mum and dad that the girls will value in the years ahead.

Fiona Jason Becky and Fran Chamberlain 2012

The serious stuff didn't last too long...

Fiona Jason Becky and Fran Chamberlain 2012
So I took the hint, it was time to head outside for some action images; a great opportunity for the girls to burn off some energy. Bring on the fun stuff

Fiona Jason Becky and Fran Chamberlain 2012

Fiona Jason Becky and Fran Chamberlain 2012

Fiona Jason Becky and Fran Chamberlain 2012

Fiona Jason Becky and Fran Chamberlain 2012

Fiona Jason Becky and Fran Chamberlain 2012

Fiona Jason Becky and Fran Chamberlain 2012


So, a small sample from one of my favourite shoots. a fabulous family, a great venue and really just a pretty amazing day all round.
HUGE thanks to Fi and her family for finally booking me. Now I just have to wait while she picks her favourite images... :)


]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Berkshire Wiltshire family family shoot portrait portraiture Sun, 21 Oct 2012 21:24:20 GMT
Lovoka Launch Party

I've had the pleasure to be working with Lovoka UK for the last few months, and Wednesday just gone was their brilliant launch party at Beach Blanket Babylon in London. 

A little background on Lovoka UK. It's a South African brand, triple distilled vodka liqueur that comes in glorious caramel and sensational chocolate. I have to say that I'm rather partial to the caramel, and that comes from someone who really doesn't like vodka, but there really is something special about this particular brand.

It comes in a rather sexy brushed aluminium bottle and it keeps very well in the freezer. Once really chilled it oozes out of the bottle and tastes great over ice or as a cocktail.  (I'm starting to think I should get paid extra for all the plugging I've been doing, but it really is very yummy)


So on to the party. 

Preparations for the launch began in earnest, and I was rather taken by these rather tasty little chocolate shot cups. Every ladies dream (?) a luxurious drink served up in delicious chocolate. Perfect! This was how the guests were going to be greeted, and then it was on to the cocktails. But first the guests had to get here!


And what better way than to get around London than in a traditional Red London Bus!! Decked out in black satin, the Lovoka Bus toured around London before bringing the guests the Beach Blanket Babylon to enjoy the rest of the evening.



In the down stairs of the venue guests were greeted by this amazing ice sculpture



And so the party really started; with great music from resident DJ Ben Ricci married together with decadent Lovoka cocktails
You can hear DJ Ben Ricci here -



Enjoying a decadent chocolate Lovoka cocktail



Sharing Lovoka with friends!



The talented staff of Beach Blanket Babylon mixing up Lovoka delights for the guests... well as serving chilled over ice.



Even the lads from the X Factor show "Times Red" came along and joined in the party


Luke White busy showing the rest of the party how it's done, much to the amusement of the rest of the band


And so the party rocked on into the rest of the night.


Lovoka UK is owned by two wonderful people, Anne and Richard Calderia, Usually they stay quietly behind the scenes making sure that everyone has a great time, and I have to say, I had a brilliant time. Thank you both for asking me to cover your launch party. I look forward to working with you again soon.


If you would like to see the rest of the party please go to
The password is "lovoka" 

If you want to know more about Lovoka UK you can check out their website or you can find them on FaceBook and you can follow them on Twitter at

All images are subject to copyright. It is illegal to copy, steal, rip, screen grab or take by any other means any of the images at Barbara Leatham Photography; any breach of copyright will lead to prosecution.

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) London Cocktail Week PR photography launch party lovoka Sat, 13 Oct 2012 10:05:58 GMT
Steam Punk meets Dick Turpin, well almost... Mixing steampunk and the love of horses


steph and mr horse face. horse portrait and steampunk


There are, on occasions, times when I get an idea that I want to play about with, but you can't really do that with a paying client. So, for those of us in the business of creating, we collaborate with fellow creatives and experiment with our ideas to see what happens.

I had this crazy idea about mixing the theme of Steam Punk with a horse; which in turn lead to the idea of Dick Turpin. Sadly Dick didn't make an appearance, he was rather shy on the day - BUT - five of us got together and had a complete blast.

This is what happens when creatives get together

In the first picture you can see Steph and "Mr Horse Face" I know it's rather rude not to remember a name, (and I'm the worst for it) but it was Hannah's fault - in the next picture - it was all she kept calling him.

Hannah and Mr Horse Face, gorgeous horse portrait

Hannah and Mr Horse Face seemed to hit if off pretty well at the start. So while Hannah ( part time actress and soon to be nurse), Nedine (fellow photographer and fluffer for the day), Liv (amazing Make Up Artist) and myself went to get a few things together ready for the shoot, Steph said she would give Mr Horse Face a little run out to calm him before the shoot. Everything was going fine so far, but you know something is coming.

You'll never guess what happened next...

Mr HF did a runner! And not just out of the yard; oh no - he went down the road and in the end, four (Yes that's FOUR) miles towards Newbury/Compton way. Well, what's a photographer to do?? No, I don't know either.

After a phone call, a quick delivery of a horse riding harness (by Hannah to Steph who had chased off after Mr HF) and a few phone calls, Hannah came back, shortly followed by Mr HF and the rather annoyed (at the horse I might add) Steph. 

So, everything is back on track and so the shoot began. Sadly, because our wonder horse wasn't playing nicely I couldn't get any photos of Hannah on him, but we did manage to get some great atmospheric images.

As it happened, on the day, we had the most amazing dark (thunder loaded) clouds. It all added to the drama of the shoot. I'd like to say that I planned it that way, but to be honest it was pure luck.

loving horse picture, in the stables in Newbury


I think even Steph managed to forgive Mr HF in the end, and I have to say, he is a stunning horse. 


wearing masks, playing in hay and having fun. Friends portraits

Mr Horse Face wasn't the only one to 'horse around' during the shoot. No chance of anything truly serious was ever going to take place after we'd had the Great Escape, so we embraced the fun, made light of the day but still came away with some great memories.

behind the scenes with Nedine and Hannah, they found a friend to fuss

BTW, this is Nedine fussing the dog - who was also a bit of a show stealer. I can't understand how Liv managed to avoid my camera, but I promise she was there x


I'm always thinking of ideas that I'd like to try out for shoots. If you are an aspiring model, a creative make-up artist or you feel you've got a crazy idea that you want to try out, let me know, maybe it's something that will inspire me too.
Collaborations are the times when people like me can push our work and create something new and ground breaking. I'm not sure what came out of this particular shoot, although I do know I want to work with all four ladies again some time soon!

My thanks to Hannah Belton, Steph Bird, Nedine O'Brien and Liv Burton.

If you live in the Reading area and you are looking for a Make Up Artist then give Liv a shout, she is brilliant and very dedicated to her trade.

You can see a few more of the images from this shoot on my FaceBook Gallery


]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Art Dick Turpin Portraits Punk Steam Steam Punk collaboration corsets Mon, 08 Oct 2012 15:34:09 GMT
Happy Accidents I love happy accidents x

Occasionally circumstances can throw people together who may never have met; this happened to me a few months ago.

I'd got my domain name registered with a company who had gone into liquidation. Stressed didn't come close to the panic and worry, not only that I had effectively lost my website address, but that I may never get it back.
It was a rare occasion where I truly wore my heart on my sleeve all over FaceBook, and it was just as well that I did. Through a mutual acquaintance, at 10pm at night when I thought I was never going to get my site back, I had a phone call from a gentleman called Darren Candler from Metadas. I'd never met him before and I certainly wasn't expecting the call; but after 20 minutes of me panicking Darren was on the job of fixing the problem.

The next day, between his hard work and communicating between my hosting company and a few of his contacts my site was saved - phew!! (and then some!!)

So how do you put a price on this 'to the rescue' act of kindness?? I offered to take some photos of his pride and joy, Rune, Rune is a stunning dog, full of bounce and the kind of dog you have to be quick to capture. There was a very obvious bond between Rune and Darren and it was a pleasure to be able to capture it.

I just wanted to share some of the images of the day and add my public thanks to Darren, I hate to think where I'd be now had he not been there to help. If you find yourself in the terrors of the computers and the web then get in touch with him.


You can see more of my pet images in my portraits gallery

]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) animal dog old pet portrait portraits salisbury sarum wiltshire Mon, 10 Sep 2012 06:59:25 GMT
Farewell to the old and hello to the start of a new adventure... It's a brand new start and I can't wait for the adventure to begin!


"Bring on the fun stuff"

It's been quite a journey over the last few years. When I started Barbara Leatham Photography back in 2007 I never thought I'd have moved three times across the UK and gained my Masters Degree in Photography, but it goes to show you that you never know what life has in store for you and that you need to take opportunities when they tap you on the shoulder.

I joined the Royal Air Force in October 2002. I remember going into the AFCO the year before with my mum, (even at 28 you still like to get your mum's approval) sitting and waiting for someone to come and ask me why I was there. The Cpl behind the desk asked "Can I help you?" and I said, "I'm a photographer, I'd like to join the Air Force" 

I've always known that I wanted to take photos. Dad had an SLR which he gave to me when I started my A-level photography all those years ago. I never thought it would lead me to the RAF. 
I certainly wasn't your average recruit; at 4' 11" aged 29 and single parent of a then eight year old boy, I was at the extreme of the recruiting limits.
I remember asking mum if she'd look after my son while I went through basic and trade training. It was going to be hard for a year, but the pay off would be worth it, and it was. I jokingly said to her, "what's the worse they can do, post me to the top of Scotland??" I ate those words when my first posting the following year was to RAF Kinloss; when you get up to Inverness - turn right.

I met my husband when I was trade training at RAF Cosford. It was very frowned upon, AC's were not encouraged to get involved with any one of rank. David was a Sgt in the medical centre, so what my Training Staff didn't know they couldn't charge me over. He was single dad of three boys all older than my son; it was a crash course in having a big family, but it was fantastic. Our boys aged 9-14 at that point.

In 2005, having spent two years commuting between RAF Kinloss and RAF Cosford, we finally got a co-location posting to East Anglia (RAF Honington) and were married. 
I left the RAF In 2007 after the birth of our son (who arrived in March 2006, and then our daughter (July 2007). That was the year I started my business. Quickly followed by my MA. 

You may notice that I don't do things by halves, it's often commented on that I never seem happier than when I'm under stress, and I suppose that to some extent people are right. 
I'm passionate about two things in my life, my family and photography.

So what's happening now...?

It's all about to change in the business. It's taken me until now to find the direction that I want to go in and with a (sort of) plan in mind I'm expecting to look back over the next 12 months and wonder how I managed, (again). I'm sure there will be days of "OMG" as well as "it's never going to happen" and probably some "I'm going to pack it all in and get a 9 to 5 job."
But the reality is I will make the changes required to get the very best out of my business, to make it everything I've envisioned and something to be proud of. When my children look back at it and realise that their mum may have been a little crazy sometimes, but sometimes being a little crazy helps.

If I can spend my working days creating some stunning images that brings joy and happiness to my clients through some fantastic memories that will be immortalised in albums, framed for their walls, encapsulated in acrylic or emblazoned on aluminium - as well as having the most amount of fun that can be squeezed into a photo shoot, then I think I'll have made my version of Maslow's self-actualisation.

Henry Ford once wrote "whether you think you can or whether you think you can't, you're right"

I've been quoting this to my children for years and it's something I say to myself all the time too. Seize the day, make it happen. Spend all that energy you have into positive thoughts and hard work, you'll be surprised where it can take you.

I'd like to thank my mum for helping me take the first step on this adventure; thanks also to my husband for supporting me though all of my crazy days, super happy days and not so entertaining stressy days; and especially for helping me with my accounts (you have no idea how much I loath that job!) To our kids, you have been a fantastic learning curve to my photography (when you let me) and a constant source of love when things get difficult, you guys rock!

Special thanks to the rest of my family and to my closest friends, who have seen me evolved over the years. You have all influenced the person I am today, you've been my ears to bend, my smiles when I'm excited about things, even when you "don't get it" - my sounding board and my rocks. You're all awesome.

Here's to the future, it's going to be quite an adventure and I hope you'll join in this next chapter x


]]> (Barbara Leatham Photography) Photography adventure business entertaining excitement family fun journey passionate Fri, 31 Aug 2012 08:00:00 GMT