A very special autumnal engagement shoot in The New Forest!

This makes me so happy to say; my wonderful big brother is getting married to the beautiful lady he has been with for the last 15 years!

I actually don't remember the first time I met Amy. She seems to have always been a part of our lives and our family. What's not to love about a Harry Potter enthusiast, who likes Busted and McFly (almost) as much as me!? We actually went to the same University, studied the same subject, and worked at the same museum, though we had nothing to do with each other, and I can claim no credit in introducing her to my brother's life.

When I was just starting to get into photographing people rather than scenery, I asked Sam and Amy if they would mind being models for me. They agreed, and we spent a while down at our local beach taking some photos. I was terrified. I didn't know how to use my camera on manual mode, and I knew nothing about lighting or posing. Basically, I spent the entire time in a state of panic! I shot the whole session in jpeg, so I had nothing to edit afterwards. In fact, I didn't even own Lightroom back then, which is something I now couldn't survive without.

I've had a look back at those photos recently, and I was really expecting to cringe when I looked at them. But, do you know what? They really aren't as awful as I was expecting! That's not saying much really, they are still pretty bad, but everyone has to start somewhere. Everyone who dreams of being a wedding photographer needs those family and friends who are willing to step out of their comfort zone for you and let you have a go. And, at the time, yes, I was very proud of those photos.

Looking at these new photos of Sam and Amy, shows me just how far I've come in the world of photography. I've learnt my trade. I've invested in education, equipment and given myself time to really know and understand what I'm doing.

Now, every photo shoot I do is my favourite photo shoot ever. That means that I'm always giving my best effort and I'm always proud of the photos I deliver.

I will always be grateful to my brother and his lovely fiancee (ahhhh!) for modelling for me all those years ago, and now for trusting me to take photos of one of the most important days of your lives! I can't wait for the wedding! But in the meantime, here are some photos from their engagement session in the gorgeous Wilverley Inclosure; a place where Sam and I spent many a happy childhood holiday, collecting sticks, building shelters and pony watching.