Catherine Candlin Photography: Blog en-us (C) Catherine Candlin Photography (Catherine Candlin Photography) Mon, 29 Jun 2020 19:31:00 GMT Mon, 29 Jun 2020 19:31:00 GMT Catherine Candlin Photography: Blog 80 120 The Victorian Dress Project I'd like to tell you a little bit about a project that I first got involved in back in 2014 with the very talented Heather Audin.  Heather is the curator for The Quilters' Guild Collection of British patchwork and quilting for The Quilters' Guild and also the maker extraordinaire of Peacock Costumiers. The combination of these two roles and her love of historical fashion (in particular, Victorian dress making) have brought to life this amazing book, Making Victorian Costumes for Women which has just been published by The Crowood Press.


I have had the honour of photographing most of the costumes featured in the book whilst marveling at their beauty, the skill Heather has to make them and occasionally wondering if I would have ever survived in the Victorian era as I swung between loving the idea of swishing around in lovely big  dresses (every day might feel like my wedding day) and back to being very grateful I can sit here and type in my jeans and a cosy gillet whilst outside the wind blows and the sleet comes down.

There are some gorgeous dresses here, with styles dating from the 1840s (think Jane Ayre for the dresses on the left in the image below) to the 1890s showing the progression of styles through the Victorian era.

Heather's book gives a fantastic insight into the fashions of the time with fashion plates, photographs of women wearing the dresses (nothing has changed much - even then we idolised a body image for fashion seen on the plates which really has no bearing on what most of us look like) and a wealth of fascinating history. Each dress has a scalable pattern and full instructions with photography by Heather of all the processes each step of the way, so you can be sure to guided through safely through making each dress.

It's rather hard to chose a favourite dress, but I think the one that calls to me most is this beautiful 1880s brown wool, velvet and gold damask bustle dress. Theres' something about the richness of the colour and the tailored top that really appeals.

Funnily enough, one of Heather's favourites is the same dress but in a completely different fabric and with a few minor tweaks to the details. This results in such a different dress (can't you just see yourself promenading down the pier in this one accessorised with parasol and a good looking gentleman?).

If you'd like to own your own copy Making Victorian Costume for Women can be bought directly from the publisher, and at the time or writing they have a discount available when buying directly. RRP £25, ISBN 978-1-78500-051-5. Visit The Crowood Press page here  (which will open a new page) They also have a more books in the series for Edwardian and Georgian costume.



]]> (Catherine Candlin Photography) bustle dress costume Crowood dressmaking Heather Audin steam punk Victorian Victorian dress Thu, 14 Jan 2016 12:07:04 GMT
Chris and Brigid This October had I had the absolute pleasure of photographing Chris and Brigid's wedding. Theirs is a beautiful love story that began in their youth with a friendship built on annual meetings at St Joseph's church each Christmas. How perfect then to be married in St Josephs RC Church in Wetherby.

Brigid's day started with getting ready at her sister's house on a rather soggy October morning with her bridesmaids. If there were nerves, it didn't show through her infectious excitement.



Chris and his brother were ably assisted at the church by their amazing little ushers who charmed every guest on their arrival while they waited for Brigid and her brother Michael, who had the honour of giving her away and also won the prize for biggest distance travelled as he and his family came over from Australia!


The beautiful service was given by Canon Nunan who reminded us of the heritage of love which belongs to us all and comes as the product of many generations before us, and how much love therefore has nurtured Brigid and Chris to allow them to enter the full and deep promises of marriage. The ceremony was full of proof of how loved they are as it was filled with family and friends who read, sang, made offerings and prayed for them.



After the service it was off to the Chvein Surprise View just outside Otley.  If you have the chance, it's well worth going to check out this gorgeous beauty spot which has stunning views over the valley. As we left Wetherby the weather brightened to give us the Chevin at its best. Brigid was a bit of a legend as she braved the cold wind at the top whilst we took a few more intimate photo's, Chris and I had the pleasure of having a few more layers on!




Back at the Chevin Country Hotel guests were waiting to welcome the newly weds, a few photo's later and celebrations went in to full swing with the wedding breakfast, speeches and dancing to party the night away...




]]> (Catherine Candlin Photography) Autumn wedding Chevin Chevin Country Park Hotel and Spa Chevin Surprise View October Otley photography wedding Wetherby Yorkshire wedding Thu, 17 Dec 2015 13:28:04 GMT
Jurassic Star Wars Jurassic Star Wars; an epic adventure in family portraiture.

For those of us of old enough to have enjoyed the originals 2015 has been a great film year with new films in the Jurassic Park and Star Wars story lines (much excitement in our house about the Star Wars release). I thought now was a good time to finally write this post about a photo project from last October in honour of Daddy's birthday. We wanted to get him something from the children without a high price tag but with a lot of family love.

I'd like to introduce you to my concept artist, Ed.  As you might be able to tell he has a bit of a cheeky side and one if his favourite hobbies is climbing up stuff.  Like a lot of 7 years olds he has a brilliant imagination which only had to be reined in on account of my skills in producing some of the crazy things he came up with.


Originally we talked about re-creating a film poster for either Star Wars or Jurassic Park (two of Daddy's favourite films), but quite frankly it was a bit too tricky as they were very art rather than photographically led.  After much deliberation we decided to create our own scene.  What follows below is how we pulled it off...

Meet the family, and stars of this production;


We chose to shoot on Strensall Common, a gorgeous nature reserve to the north of York, late afternoon on a lovely Autumnal day in October.  What you can't tell in the photo is just how wet their shoes are - in our dedication to find the perfect spot I accidentely dragged them through a rather large bog. 

We must also thank our dear friends the Dean family for an excellent Christmas gift in the form of the dinosaur and the seller at a car boot sale for the purchase a few years earlier of the Millennium Falcon.  With Ed's help I took a few images form different angles and against the backgrounds that would be closest to how the toys would appear in the final image.  I also asked him to hold them in a couple of different ways to give me a bit more to work with in Photoshop if I needed it.




I also asked the kids to run around and look scared in a few different locations


The best image turned out to be the one where they nearly fell over their own feet (and the tufts of grass) as I tried to get them to run at full pelt towards the camera - rather than relying on their excellent acting skills. 

The final three pictures that make up the composite were these;


The toys were cut out in Photoshop and placed into the image with the kids, I added a little bit of blur and then some laser fire with the help of this lovely little tutorial by Captured (thank you).  The results have amused Daddy and our friends and given him a much more interesting family photo for his desk at work  - and besides, experience tells me that getting both of them to smile nicely and genuinely would be much more hard work and a lot less fun than our silly afternoon out.


PS to any Star Wars geeks out there - forgive me for I have sinned, I now knoweth that the Falcon doth shoot its blasters from turrets at the top and bottom, not from the sides as depicted above.

]]> (Catherine Candlin Photography) Catherine Candlin Jurassic Park Star Wars Strensall Common York composite dinosaur family photo millennium falcon photogrpah photoshop Sun, 18 Oct 2015 08:22:29 GMT
Zhan and Elina  This February I had the great pleasure of photographing Zhan and Elina as they celebrated their marriage. The ceremony was in the heart of York at the historic St Michael le Belfry church and the was filled with their friends and church family (York Chinese Church).  We then had a quick trip for some portraits around York and to take in some of the stunning beauty of this gorgeous city.  Elina deserves special credit as we had been expecting snow, but braved the cold weather for a few photo's without her coat to show off her stunning dress. 

I hope you enjoy looking at a few of their pictures, and my thanks to Zhan and Elina for inviting me to be such an intimate part of their day and for all their generosity and kindness. I also have to award this wedding top marks for excellent use of the selfie stick and apologise as I'm pretty sure I photo-bombed a couple of them.

]]> (Catherine Candlin Photography) Chinese Chinese Church St Michael le Belfry York bride groom marriage photography portraits wedding winter wedding Sat, 28 Feb 2015 19:07:17 GMT
A Walk in the Woods I love a good Autumn shoot and this OctoberI had the pleasure of the company of Ed and Laura and their two delightful children.  We had a lovely walk and explore through Hagg Woods on the outskirts of York. 

As we wound our merry way through the woods, two year old,  Katy treated me to a beautiful theatrical rendition of 'Let it Go', though I'm reliably informed she doesn't actually like the film, her knowledge of the song was pretty amazing!


One year old Thomas is a complete charmer, and I love his gorgeous grin as he peaked over his daddy's arm.  I really enjoy the beautiful little interactions between children and their parents, you know - those moments when they are completely absorbed in being in your company.  It's also something I love about photography  - the chance to capture it.  I know we all dream of the beautiful family photo where we're all looking and smiling at the camera (easier said than done - right) but it's still the little moments that I think describe family love at its best.

]]> (Catherine Candlin Photography) baby children family family photography family portrait hagg woods toddler York Wed, 29 Oct 2014 21:50:24 GMT
Setting the Scene Every now and then my professional lives collide and recently I had pleasure of photographing some film and TV period drama costumes for the Quilt Museum and Gallery.  The Quilt Museum is currently exhibiting an exhibition called Setting the Scene which features costumes made by Cosprop for Jane Eyre, Downton Abbey, Pride and Prejudice, The Duchess and Portrait of a Lady.


If you'd like to see these beautiful costumes and quilts and patchwork from the period pop along to the Quilt Museum and Gallery in York, Setting the Scene is on display until 31st August 2014.


]]> (Catherine Candlin Photography) Downton Jane Eyre period costumes quilt museum Mon, 16 Jun 2014 19:26:15 GMT
If music be the food of love... "If music be the food of love, play on..."

I had the honour of photographing a most amazing couple this week.  Mark and Vanessa were married at St Michael le Belfry in the shadow of York Minster.  Easter tourists gathered outside the church to admire the bride - who was remarkably early - and guests packed into the church to witness the marriage of two very special people.

Mark and Vanessa are both very talented musicians (or should I say Dr Mark... he really is a clever chap) and as you might imagine their wedding service was full to bursting with music, from the string quartet which played them in to the wonderful 18 strong youth band lead the hymns and the congregation who raised the rafters singing with them.

Mark and Vanessa are also much loved - to fill a church the size of St Mikes with those who love and know you is no small feat. It was wonderful to see so many shining faces filled with joy to witness these two on their wedding day, and to know that whatever adventures life takes them on - there is a small army of those who love them on hand to share it with.

They also made a very good tourist attraction, and were very obliging in posing for a group of Japanese visitors.  Perhaps they should wear their wedding livery every week and start busking - I suspect they might have a roaring trade.

In the evening the Mark and Vanessa had found a fantastic barn in Barmby Moor.  The barn bounced with the awesome music and wild dancing (good job it was in the middle of a field really).

So to Mark and Vanessa, where love and music abound - I hope that's where we shall always find you.

]]> (Catherine Candlin Photography) Thu, 10 Apr 2014 21:39:37 GMT