An Edinburgh wedding photographer with Miami blues

Miami may be 4,263 miles from Edinburgh but it’s about 20 degrees warmer at this time of year. So when a special offer appeared it seemed a good idea and time for an Edinburgh Wedding Photographer to visit.
I do photograph subjects other than brides, grooms and weddings! In Miami I was fascinated by the colour blue, which although mainly in the sky, was frequently reflected in the glass of the modern architecture, or contrasted with the white of the older buildings.
Miami Beach is where most of the Art Deco buildings are, and away from the loud night-time music of Ocean Boulevard, is an absolute delight. I gather in summertime it is stiflingly hot, but in late November the temperatures were around 25 degrees – just perfect for aimlessly strolling around with a camera.

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East Lothian wedding photographer in New York

A month ago saw an East Lothian wedding photographer back in New York. This time I barely left Brooklyn – which if it was a city rather than a Borough, would be the 4th largest city in the USA. So there was plenty to explore!
The East River, and it’s ferry, continue to inspire me, whatever the weather. It’s a great, and quick way to cover the distance from Greenpoint in the north (where I was staying) to the midpoint of the Brooklyn Bridge. Once there I walked, and walked, and…got lost.
That’s what I like to do when I’m exploring – just take randome turns and see where the streets lead you. Of course, you’re never really lost in a city with the streets laid out in a numerical grid system, but you know what I mean!
I did venture into Manhattan on a couple of occassions, once to visit the amazing Metropolitan Museum of Art. And I was amazed at the amount of movies being filmed on the streets, with major stars. I saw – from a distance – Will Smith, Dustin Hoffman, Adam Sandler, among many others. And watched as a crew set up a stunt involving a high speed car chase across a busy intersection (although as it was going to be filmed many hours later, I didn’t hang around to watch the actual stunt!)
You mat notice that there’s several photos of bars here. One was the most unusual bar I’ve ever visited. It was at the back of a launderette, entered through a door disguised as a couple of dryers. And once inside the bar there were pinball machines – loads of them!
The other bar featured here is Peggy’s local. I’ve promised not to name it, or ever mention it on TripAdvisor! But it’s like that bar in ‘Cheers.’ It’s the bar where everyone knows everyone’s name (and the bartender knows your favourite tipple.) Just a superb place, and enough to turn you into an alcoholic! Not that this East Lothian wedding photographer would ever partake in drink…. ahem….

An Edinburgh wedding photographer in New York

So, an Edinburgh wedding photographer working in New York? Well, that would be telling – but these are some of my favourite photographs that I took on my few days free in the city.

For a change, I’ve added captions under most of the photos.


Grand Central Station – using a 30 sec shutter speed. That’s an Apple store under the windows at the back!

The whispering arch in Grand Central Station. It’s just like the whispering gallery in St Paul’s Cathedral in London: whisper into the arch and the person standing diagonally opposite can hear you. Although, in this case it looks as though someone didn’t make the restrooms in time…..

Taken from the Staten Island ferry, this is 36 photos joined together in Photoshop. Shot handheld from a moving (up and down as well as towards the subject) boat, it’s amazing what modern technology can do nowadays!

This reminded me of the “Ragged Old Flag” by Johnny Cash

There’s a message here, somewhere….

A few great murals in the Chelsea area

Some arty graffiti on a lamp post….

It was Halloween while I was there. The Pirates of Penzance Brooklyn.

The New York Marathon went straight past where I was staying in Brooklyn.

And some people came out to watch as the 10,000 runners streamed past.

The view of the Empire State Building from the flat (sorry, ‘apartment’!) I was staying in.

‘The Ride’ is a bus tour with a difference: all the seats face sideways and are arranged as a terrace so everyone gets a view. They then stop in front of designated street entertainers who perform for them.

This was in Times Square. And it was several days after Halloween. I think he was emphasising the 50% cuts throughout the store.

My favourite journey was the East River Ferry. The nearest pier was just a 10 minute walk from Peggy’s apartment and it took about 15-20 minutes to get to south Manhattan. The views from the open back deck were amazing. These four photos were all taken as the sun sank into the autumnal sky.

Edinburgh wedding photographer – reflections of New York

An Edinburgh wedding photographer at yet another destination wedding? Well, if you’ve looked at the pictures first, you may be thinking that it was one of those weddings that I’m not allowed to show in any media of any kind, nor mention any names (of which I’ve had a few this year.) And I’m not going to tell you any more!
Suffice to say I have just returned from a few days in the Greatest City in the World (after Edinburgh) where I managed to spend some time with my friend Peggy. I haven’t been in NYC for 15 years so there was plenty for us to see and do and Peggy, a long term resident, was an excellent guide.
Photographically, I have a problem with the city. Almost every view is one I have seen before, whether on TV or in the cinema and I wanted to remember something different.
A piece of advice from a friend came to mind – “Always remember to look up,” they’d said, because with such tall buildings the view of the sky is always varied and interesting. And while looking up, I discovered that those tall buildings reflected other buildings (thanks to modern architect’s predeliction for glass.) So I started hunting for interesting reflections. The amazing weather helped enormously (22c and blue skies almost the whole time!) and a trip to Central Park to view the Fall Colours added a bit of variety to my project.
Finally I have added one of the final ‘reflection’ pictures I took – of the two of us reflected in the window of a subway carriage.
All in all, a wonderful few days reflecting (see what I did there?) on the wonders of being an Edinburgh Wedding Photographer!

East Lothian wedding photographer

As an East Lothian wedding photographer, it’s not often that I get a Saturday off. But today was one such day and I decided to photograph the chimneys of the local Cockenzie power station being demolished. After a bit of research using Google maps I picked my location – the old Blindwells open cast coal mine. The mine used to supply coal to the power station, but it closed in the 1970, has been reclaimed and is covered in grass.
The power station itself opened in 1967 and for 48 years the chimneys have been a dominant feature on the East Lothian coastline. It was being demolished as it is too polluting, and coal fired power stations are being fazed out across the country.
And next week I’ll be back at work as an East Lothian wedding photographer, at a wedding in North Berwick!

A Highlands wedding

The other weekend I photographed a highlands wedding which I can’t write about, or show any photographs from! The couple asked that no photos appear anywhere on the internet, as an increasing number of my clients do nowadays.
However, since my friend Peggy was visiting from Brooklyn, New York, I decided to turn the trip north into a tour of the Highlands, and these are her and my photos. It was, of course, a typically Scottish summer, with no sun and lots of grey cloud, but Peggy seemed to love every moment!
I don’t really do landscapes. To paraphrase Joe McNally, ‘I’ve never seen a good landscape that couldn’t be improved with the inclusion of a person.” In the almost deserted Highlands, that person was Peggy!
We travelled to Lochinver (where the wedding was) via Glen Coe, Loch Ness and Ullapool, and returned via Cromarty, the Cairngorms and Braemar.
And although Peggy was keeping a sharp lookout, she didn’t see the Loch Ness Monster, or a single Haggis on the hills! To make up for the disappointment, on our return I introduced her to my favourite ‘wild’ animal, Freddy.

Working in Marrakech

I’ve been to Marrakech many times over the past 8 years, but this was a visit with a difference – I was working at the American Society of Travel Agents Destination Expo conference. My friend Jennifer, who I met around 20 years ago, and haven’t seen for around 10 years, is the communications director, and she reckoned that the best way for us to meet up after she had flown all the way across the Atlantic, was to employ me! With the added bonus that my flights were cheaper than flying a photographer from the US, and that I already knew Marrakech and Morocco.

And so my 10 days in Marrakech began – with a free first morning which involved me showing some of the US travel writers around the bit of the Medina that I know, and continued into the conference. Every night there was a social event of some sort, which also had to be photographed, as well as all the speakers and exhibitors at the conference. Some very long days followed!

On the last day Jennifer and I joined others on a day trip to outside of the city, and then we had one last day together in Marrakech where Jennifer went shopping in the souks, and watched a craftsman actually make the pair of sandals she bought!

That left three days for me on my own and I explored bits of the Medina that I hadn’t visited before – the southern side, and particularly the El Badi Palace(with its famous nesting storks and selfie mirror) and the story-telling evening at Cafe Clock.

Finally, one last day of work photographing the area around the Riad Porte Royale (it’s in the very non-touristy north west of the Medina) and also of it’s newly painted terrace, to update their web-site.

I just love the mix of old and new in Morocco – the ancient crafts and way of life, mixed with excellent food, good communications (wifi!) and all the convenient modernities we take for granted in the UK. And there are now direct flights from Glasgow! I’ll be back…..