Sian Lewis Photography: Blog en-us (C) Sian Lewis Photo. All content is protected under copyright law and may not be copied or reproduced. (Sian Lewis Photography) Sat, 06 Jan 2024 15:00:00 GMT Sat, 06 Jan 2024 15:00:00 GMT Sian Lewis Photography: Blog 120 80 Choosing a wedding photographer If you're reading this, there's every chance you're a looking for a wedding photographer. Congratulations, you're in the right place. If you're not getting married but you know someone who is, feel free to share this blog with them.

You may already have started looking for someone to capture your special day, in which case, you'll most likely be aware of just how many people there are out there offering wedding photography services. So how do you go about choosing the right person? I'm glad you asked. 

First things first, choose a photographer you vibe with! You'll be spending a significant chunk of your special day together, so finding someone whose company you enjoy is key. It's like picking a wedding buddy with a camera. You'll find that the right person will end up doing so much more than just taking photos. An experienced photographer will be able to help guide you seamlessly through your day whilst also helping with dresses, shoes, buttonholes, ties, and a hundred and one other things that may pop up on the day.

Next on the checklist: insurance. Yes, it might sound unromantic, but trust me, it's a must. Photographers should hold both public liability and professional indemnity insurance (you'll find that many venues will require your photographer to carry public liability so it really is a must). 


Ask potential photographers if you can see at least two full wedding galleries. Most photographers will post one or two wow shots to their social media accounts (we all want to showcase our best work) but you need to make sure your photographer is competent at capturing beautiful images of your whole day and in every situation. 

Are they a natural light photographer or are they competent at using off camera flash? Using additional lighting can turn a good shot into an amazing shot and really make your wedding photographs pop. Not being dependent on ambient light will also give your photographer far more scope to create beautiful images for you. 


Now, let's talk tech! Look for a photographer with a camera sporting dual memory slots. Why? Because memories are priceless, and having a backup is like a safety net for those once-in-a-lifetime moments. You also need to make sure they have a backup camera and multiple lenses because equipment can and does fail. If something happens to one camera, your photographer needs to be able to carry on shooting and that is why a backup camera is vital. 
It's also important to check what type of backup system your photographer has for keeping your images safe after your big day. 


So there you have it. You now hopefully have a good idea of everything you need to consider before you
book your photographer. If you still have questions, any photographer worth their salt will be more than happy to talk you through everything you need to know. 

'The photographer you use depends very much on how important your photographs are to you'.

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(Sian Lewis Photography) Sat, 06 Jan 2024 11:41:02 GMT
Craftsman qualification It's been just over three years since I gained my Craftsman qualification with The Guild of Photographers (time flies when you're having fun and running a busy photography studio). Though I posted about it on my Facebook page at the time, I've realised that I still haven't blogged about it so it's time to rectify that. 

So what exactly does it mean to be a Craftsman and what does it entail? Craftsman status is the next level up from Qualified status and requires entrants to submit a panel of 20 photos which must fit together as a cohesive set of images. Once printed and mounted, the panel of images is assessed by an experienced team of judges at the Guid of Photographer's HQ in Stoke. In addition to their printed panel, entrants must also submit a mission statement, a sample product, and a book of the images. 

I had originally intended to photograph people in a variety of different uniforms (which was inspired by a portrait I shot of my brother in his paramedic uniform). However, following a huge number of applications from local Scouts and Brownies, I decided to base my panel on the scouting movement, incorporating Scouts, Brownies, Sea Scouts, Cubs and Scout leaders. 

All the images were shot in my studio using the same background and lighting set up (one large octabox to the left of the camera) to create consistency within the panel. I just adore classically lit portraits and it worked so perfectly for this set of images. 

Once I'd finalised and edited my images, they were printed and mounted on fine art paper by the good people at Digitalab who did a great job. 

Presenting my panel at the Guild HQ was probably one of the most nerve-racking things I've ever done but being told I'd passed made every moment of stress totally worth it. 

At the time of writing, I am the only person in Wales to hold the title of Craftsman in portraiture. 

(Sian Lewis Photography) Tue, 23 Aug 2022 14:47:01 GMT
Choosing a newborn photographer  

Newborn photography is one of the fastest-growing genres in the photography industry, you only have to ask for a recommendation on Facebook to see just how many newborn photographers are out there. As with most industries, there is a broad spectrum when it comes to both quality and pricing. So how do you go about finding the right newborn photographer for you? I'm glad you asked. Here's my handy guide to finding the perfect photographer for your new baby. 

•Safety - This is the most important one of all! - Does the photographer work safely? There is a saying that the camera never lies but I know that Photoshop is a prolific fibber. Many of the images you see will be composites, ie photos made up from more than one image that are cleverly combined in post-production to make it look like one image. This is typically used for the lovely head in hands shot and babies in hammocks (babies shouldn't ever actually be suspended). If a baby is placed in a prop, such as a bucket or a basket, there should be a spotter next to the baby at all times. Your baby should be safe and secure at all times. 

•Style - Take a look at the photographer's portfolio to see the kind of images they produce. All photographers have a different style so try to pick someone who produces work that you like.

•Quality - Does the photographer produce consistently good images? Are they well lit and in focus?

•Insurance - This is a huge point! Please don't ever hand your baby over to a photographer who isn't insured. 

•Posing - How are the babies posed? Do they look comfortable? If a baby's arms or head are resting on the edge of the prop, there should be plenty of padding, they should never, ever be directly on the edge of a bucket, basket, crate etc. Are their arms and legs inside the prop? Having arms or legs overhanging can be uncomfortable and leave the baby unbalanced and certain positions can affect their circulation. 

•Training - Has the photographer undertaken training in the art of newborn photography? Adequate training is vitally important for all newborn photographers. Don't be afraid to ask the photographer who they have trained with.

•Qualifications - Does your photographer hold a qualification in newborn photography? A qualification from a professional body demonstrates that the photographer is consistently working at a professional standard.

•Pricing - Now we all like a bargain but when it comes to photography, the old adage of 'you get what you pay for' rings true for the most part (a bargain is only a bargain if you get a useable product). The price a photographer charges will be a reflection of their skill level; if you want a fully trained, experienced photographer, you can expect to pay a decent amount. A good photographer will have spent a lot of time and money perfecting their craft. If someone is charging very low prices, it should set alarm bells ringing. Is it worth compromising the safety of your baby to save money?

The long and the short of it is this, choose a photographer who will safely capture beautiful images of your baby that you're going to love forever. 


Safety first! There should always be someone next to a baby when they are on a prop. 


Whilst it looks like the baby is being held in the air, he's actually safely snuggled on my beanbag.

Here is an example of how we merge multiple photos to create one final image. In the first photo, we have Mila (the dog) with the empty saddle.
In the second image, Amelia's mummy supports her head with her right hand and has her left hand supporting Amelia behind the saddle. 
In the third image, mum has her arm around the back of Amelia with her hand on her bottom to keep her safe and secure.

The second and third image are then merged together before being added to the first image to create the final photo.

The 'bum up' pose is one of the most popular poses done by newborn photographers. Here's an example of how it should be done: Hand flat under the cheek, chin touching the shoulder, elbow and knee touching, back foot crossed over the front foot. The position of the feet stops the baby from being able to push themselves forward if they startle (this is very important from a safety perspective). It's also more comfortable for them.
You'll also notice that his skin is beautifully creamy; whilst some of this is down to the lighting, it also shows that he was lovely and warm - if you notice that a baby has mottled skin in a photo, it means that the photographer didn't keep the baby warm enough.
Lastly, the shadow under his nose shows that the lighting is coming from his head and sweeping down his body. If you see shadows going up the face (known as horror lighting) it means the baby has been lit from their feet. Babies should always be lit from the head down. Noticing these details in a photo is normally a good indication of whether the photographer has received adequate training. 


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(Sian Lewis Photography) best newborn photographer South Wales newborn photographer Barry newborn photographer South Wales newborn photographer Vale of Glamorgan Thu, 30 Jan 2020 15:03:10 GMT
Qualified newborn photographer After years of promising several people that I'd do it, I have finally achieved my qualified status with The Guild Of Photographers, making me one of very few photographers in Wales to hold this status in newborn photography.

Though I photograph across a multitude of genres, I felt gaining my qualification in newborn photography was particularly important due to the specialised nature of photographing newborns. I also feel it's imperative for parents to be assured that their precious baby is being handled by someone who can clearly demonstrate their skill and expertise in this area. 

To obtain qualified status, photographers must submit 21 images consisting of 3 photos from 7 different sessions. These images are then assessed by a highly experienced panel of judges who decided whether the images are of a professional standard. They consider several different elements including lighting, storytelling and post-processing. I'm delighted to say that my panel passed unanimously. 

I'd like to say a massive thank you to everyone who has supported and encouraged me over the years.


(Sian Lewis Photography) baby photographer best newborn photographer newborn photographer Sun, 06 May 2018 12:58:00 GMT
Pete and Jayne at Pencoed House  

If ever there was a couple who were absolutely meant to be together, it's Pete and Jayne! 
They first met on holiday in Ibiza when they were just 18 and Pete 'accidentally' missed his flight home so he could stay on an extra week. Upon returning to the UK they dated for a while before going their separate ways and then lost contact. Eight years later, after joining a new website called 'Facebook', Pete tracked Jayne down and they rekindled their holiday romance. The rest, as they say, is history. 

I didn't actually meet Pete and Jayne until the day of their wedding which is unusual as I will normally meet up with couples in advance to talk about their plans. However, Pete and Jayne arranged their whole wedding in just six weeks which didn't give us a whole lot of time to catch up before the big day. After speaking with Jayne on the phone, I knew we'd get on just fine. 

On the morning of the wedding, Jayne got ready at the Copthorne Hotel along with her bridesmaids and flower girls (one of them being her daughter Savannah). Jayne was so calm and easy going and smiled the whole way though her bridal prep. 
And I fell in love with her Jimmy Choo's.


After I'd finished photographing Jayne getting ready, I headed over to the beautiful Pencoed House where I met Pete and his best men and ushers (two of whom bore an uncanny resemblance to little Ant and Dec). 
Like his bride to be, Pete was super chilled and smiley and he took to posing like an absolute pro!


When Jayne arrived she was still smiling from ear to ear and there wasn't the slightest trace of nerves.

Jayne's dad was absolutely beaming with pride as he walked her up the aisle to meet Pete.
During the ceremony there were tears of joy along with a moment of hilarity when the registrar called Pete by the wrong name. Oops!

After the ceremony it was time to start on group photos. Pencoed House makes a great backdrop for these; the steps in particular are great for posing people on. 

Once we'd finished with the groups, I took Pete and Jayne off for their bride and groom portraits. I really love this part of the day, especially when I have such beautiful grounds to work in and the tree lined driveway leading to Pencoed House is just gorgeous. 

Wedding days always seem to fly by and Pete and Jayne's was no exception. In what seemed like no time at all, it was time for their first dance and they busted out some great moves on the dance floor. 

I loved every moment of Pete and Jayne's wedding, they are such a wonderful couple and their friends and family made me feel so welcome. I left Pencoed House feeling like I'd made some great new friends.
I wish Pete, Jayne and Savannah much love and happiness for the future. 


(Sian Lewis Photography) South Vale Wales photographer photography wedding Mon, 03 Oct 2016 22:35:19 GMT
Karen and Ieuan I put together some of my favourite images from Karen and Ieuan's wedding. Such a great day for a lovely couple! Please click the HD option for the best quality. 




(Sian Lewis Photography) Mon, 04 Jul 2016 16:48:40 GMT
Chris and Anwen got married I have to start this blog with the story of Chris' proposal to Anwen simply because they really don't get any more epic than a proposal on top of mount Kilimanjaro! The engagement ring was slightly unconventional - Chris used a piece of his bootlace which he tied around Anwen's finger. It was duly replaced with a proper ring but the bootlace has been kept safe. 

I've known Anwen pretty much my whole life as her mum and my dad are first cousins (which I think makes us second cousins once removed or something like that). I have very fond memories of playing with dolls in her playroom and eating homemade Welsh cakes and mince pies. 

Naturally, I was over the moon when Chris and Anwen asked me to photograph their wedding, not least of all because it meant getting to spend a few days in West Wales right before Christmas. 

Anwen got ready at her parents home; a gorgeous little bungalow nestled on the side of the beautiful Preseli Mountains. It was funny being back in the playroom again which was exactly as I remembered it from my childhood. 


Anwen's mum is super creative (she makes the most amazing corn dollies) and she crocheted Anwen's bouquet for her. There's nothing quite like the personal touch. To go with her handmade bouquet, Anwen also had her own perfume made for her. 

One of my favourite parts of the bridal prep is when the bride's mum does up her wedding dress, it's normally the last time she will ever help her daughter dress (and yes sometimes that makes me a little emotional). 

Once Anwen was ready, I headed down to Bethlehem Chapel in Newport where I found a remarkably calm Chris looking very dapper. Luckily it was still dry enough to be able to get some shots outside and Chris pulled his best modelling poses out of the bag.

I'm not sure if Chris was looking for diving inspiration in the photo below or maybe he was just collecting his thoughts knowing his bride was about to make her entrance. Either way, I love his expression. 

This is another favourite moment of mine during the day, watching the groom's reaction as his bride enters. Chris could barely contain his excitement at seeing Anwen. 

Now if there's one thing the Welsh are known for, it's their singing voices and the guests in the chapel certainly stayed true to form. I'm not sure I've ever heard Calon Lan and Cwm Rhondda sung so beautifully and with such gusto. 

If you've ever read any of my other blogs or spent any time on my Facebook page, you'll know I am totally obsessed with light (like seriously obsessed with it). Despite the now awful weather outside, there was beautiful light coming in through the chapel window and a conveniently placed staircase meant I could place Chris and Anwen right in it. 

After the ceremony, the wedding party moved onto the reception at LLwyngwair Holiday Park. Chris and Anwen chose this particular venue as it's where Anwen's parents had their wedding reception. I'd already taken note of the fabulous windows the day before and knew they'd be a perfect backdrop to show off Anwen's dress. 


How's this for a wedding cake! Such an amazing way to incorporate Chris' proposal. 

As well as lighting, I also have a thing for reflections and this huge, shiny table was just perfect. I've been working for quite a while to balance my flash with ambient lighting and I finally got there. 

I'd hoped that the wind and rain might have eased off come the evening but it was still blowing a gale so we rounded of Chris and Anwen's photos in a cosy corner of the hotel.

I can't finish this blog without talking about Chris and Anwen's honeymoon. A few days after their wedding, they jetted off New York City and did the things that most people visiting the Big Apple do; taking in the sights, strolling round Central Park and they also ran the Brooklyn Marathon! What a way to start married life. 

Chris and Anwen, thank you so much for choosing me to capture your special day, I wish you a lifetime of love and happiness. 


(Sian Lewis Photography) Wed, 27 Jan 2016 01:27:10 GMT
Is your baby in safe hands? If you're a regular visitor to my Facebook page, you'll no doubt have seen me talking about baby safety during newborn sessions. It's something that I take incredibly seriously because if someone is trusting me enough to take the first professional images of their precious newborn, the very least I can do is make sure that baby is safe. 

Over the past couple of days, there have been several articles posted by regional newspapers about two separate incidents which occurred at a large, well-known studio franchise. In the first incident, a baby rolled off a posing prop and in the second, a baby's head was left unsupported and allowed to flop down whilst attempting to do the much-loved head in the hands pose. Both situations are completely unacceptable and could have led to serious injuries. 

Last year, in order to show my commitment to baby safety, I joined BANPAS (Baby and Newborn Photographers Association). All applications are assessed to make sure that they are working safely and competently which means when parents choose a BANPAS registered photographer, they can be sure their baby's safety wont be compromised. And in a totally unregulated industry where literally anyone can pick up a camera and call themselves a photographer, I feel it's incredibly important that such an organisation exists to help educate parents. 

So, in an ever-growing market, how do know which photographers are working safely whilst keeping your baby comfortable during their session? The BANPAS website is a great place to start, you can use their search facility to find registered photographers in your area. Here are some key elements to look out for in photographs:

  • Baby's skin - Is the skin mottled? Mottled skin means that the baby is cold which in turn means the photographer hasn't made the studio warm enough. As babies can't regulate their own body temperature, they need to be kept very warm during their session. A cold baby is not a happy baby.
  • Arms and legs - if the baby is placed in/on a prop, are the arms and legs safely inside? Babies should look safe and secure rather than precariously dangling out of a prop. It's especially important to make sure that their arms are not resting on the edges of a prop as this can affect their circulation, not to mention it's very uncomfortable. 
  • Purple hands or feet - if the baby's hands or feet are purple, this can indicate that their circulation has been cut off. It's vital to keep a check on this during the session. 
  • Composite - a composite image is a photo made up of 2 or more images to create one final image. This is done to ensure that the baby is never left unsupported or put in an unsafe situation where they could fall or injure themselves. My composite images will always be labelled as such.

    I used two photos to create this final image of little Quinn. Firstly, I photographed just the stool to use as a base image. Then I settled Quinn onto the seat and posed with him with his feet tucked under his bottom. Babies have surprisingly strong legs and even at such a young age they can push themselves forward. Tucking their feet under them like this stops them being able to push forward. 
    I had Quinn's mum keep her hands on him to keep him safe and settled until I was ready to take the shot. On my count, his mum removed her hands for a split second whilst I took the photo and then put them back on him. The top and bottom photos were then merged to complete this final image. 

The image below has become very popular with my clients and it's one of my favourites for showing just how tiny the baby is in their daddy's hands. Whilst it looks like the baby is being held in the air, they are in fact lying safely on a beanbag.

If you want any further information on newborn safety, checkout the BANPAS website by clicking here.

(Sian Lewis Photography) Cardiff Glamorgan Newborn South Vale Wales baby of photographer photography Tue, 19 May 2015 21:32:56 GMT
Autism Heroes Awards A couple of weeks ago I was asked to photograph the Autism Heroes Awards launch at the Welsh Assembly Building. The winners will be announced at Holly's Ball which helps raise money for autism charities. You can find out more information about the awards here

I love shooting in the Senedd because even on fairly gloomy days, it has the most amazing natural light (and if you've read my other blogs, you will know how much I love natural light). I'm also fascinated by the ceiling in there.

The event coincided with World Autism Awareness Day and it was great to see so many people supporting this brilliant cause. There were some very inspiring speakers and some beautiful singing from a Welsh choir and two young solo singers. The event was rounded off by blowing bubbles on the steps of the Senedd. 

Below are some of the photos from the day. If you'd like to keep up to date with Holly's Ball, you can follow their Facebook page.





(Sian Lewis Photography) Wed, 15 Apr 2015 20:14:36 GMT
Lauren and Dave are having a baby. I first got to know Lauren many years ago when we were both members of an amateur dramatics company so I was delighted when she asked me to photograph her forthcoming wedding to her fiancee Dave. And I was even more delighted when Lauren and Dave announced they were expecting a baby!

Needless to say they booked in for a newborn session (which is going to be just 5 weeks before their wedding) and though they originally wanted to keep the sex of the baby a secret, Lauren loved the idea of doing a gender reveal session.

So yesterday afternoon, armed with a big bunch of pink and blue balloons, a few props and the utterly adorable Pixie dog, Lauren, Dave and myself headed off to Cosmeston Country Park in Penarth for their gender reveal shoot.

I use strobes for all my studio sessions so it was a really nice change to get outside and make use of the beautiful early afternoon light. If you've read some of my previous blog posts you'll know how much I love shooting during the golden hour when the light is warm and soft and creates beautiful shadows and yesterday's light was absolutely perfect. 

Cosmeston is a wonderful location for shoots because it provides so many gorgeous natural backdrops. I just loved the way the rushes were backlit by the setting sun, they almost looked like they were glowing. I love to backlight people whenever I can and in this case it helped emphasise Lauren's lovely baby bump and created a beautiful warmth and softness in the images. 

Pixie was really keen to be involved in the session as well and she posed very beautifully with her little pink and blue ribbons. 

After getting a variety of different shots, it was time for the big reveal! Team pink or team blue?

It's team blue!! Lauren and Dave will be having a baby boy.

Pixie is very excited to be getting a little brother.

Quite often I can see the shots I want to get before we even start a session. I've always been a sucker for a shallow depth of field and I wanted to get a few shots with the balloons in focus and Lauren and Dave out of focus behind them. Tying the slate to the balloons was originally just to stop them from flying off in the wide blue yonder but as the heart was so pretty, I thought it would be nice to make a proper feature out of it. 

We finished off the session with another reveal shot this time using just a single balloon. 

I absolutely loved doing this session, it was so much fun and Lauren and Dave were brilliant (and so was Pixie). 

Gender reveal sessions are already huge in the USA and I've got no doubt they're going to grow in popularity here in the UK too. If you'd like a novel way of announcing the gender of your baby, please get in touch. 

(Sian Lewis Photography) Maternity South Wales baby be mum newborn photographer photoshoot to Wed, 11 Mar 2015 22:13:43 GMT
Choosing a newborn photographer

Choosing a photographer can be a bit of a minefield, especially when it comes to choosing one to photograph your precious newborn baby.

No doubt you'll have seen many beautiful images of sleeping babies curled up in various props and wearing adorable little outfits. It may seem like they've just been plopped into a bucket or a basket but the truth is, there is a huge amount of time and skill that goes into creating these images. So how do you go about finding a photographer to create these images for you?


When you are looking for a baby photographer, there are several things to look out for. 
•Style - Take a look at the photographer's portfolio to see the kind of images they produce. All photographers have a different style so try to pick someone who produces work that you like.
•Quality - Does the photographer produce consistently good images? Are they will lit and in focus?

•Insurance - This is
•Posing - How are the babies posed? Do they look comfortable? If a baby's arms or head are resting on the edge of the prop, there should be plenty of padding, they should never, ever be directly on the edge of a bucket, basket, crate etc. Are their arms and legs inside the prop? Having arms or legs overhanging can be uncomfortable and leave the baby unbalanced and certain positions can affect their circulation. 
huge point! Please don't ever hand your baby over to a photographer who isn't insured. 
•Professional memberships - Are they a member of a professional body specifically for newborn photographers? Choosing a photographer who is a member of
BANPAS (Baby and Newborn Photographers Association) means you can be certain that the photographer is insured and has also demonstrated the ability to work safely and competently.
•Training - Has the photographer undertaken training in the art of newborn photography? Adequate training is vitally important for all newborn photographers. Don't be afraid to ask the photographer who they have trained with.
•Safety - Does the photographer work safely? There is a saying that the camera never lies but I know that Photoshop is a prolific fibber. Many of the images you see will be composites, ie photos made up from more than one image that are cleverly combined in
post production
to make it look like one image. This is typically used for the lovely head in hands shot and babies in hammocks (babies shouldn't ever actually be suspended). If a baby is placed in a prop, such as a bucket or a basket, there should be a spotter next to the baby at all times.
•Qualifications - Does your photographer hold a qualification in newborn photography? A qualification from a professional body demonstrates that the photographer is consistently working at a professional standard.


A final thing to look out for when looking at the work of newborn photographers is the baby's skin. Babies need to be kept very warm during their shoot in order to help them sleep (and let's face it, no one particularly likes to be cold). If a baby has mottled skin it means they are cold so if you see this in a newborn image, it's very possible that the photographer doesn't understand the need for the baby to be warm. 

This great blog post by
BANPAS explains a few more things in greater detail


Though it looks like the baby in this photo is being held in the air, she is in fact safely nestled on my beanbag.

Having a spotter next to the baby is very important for their safety. 






(Sian Lewis Photography) baby photographer barry baby photographer cardiff baby photographer penarth newborn photographer Fri, 12 Dec 2014 19:29:30 GMT
Canada Lodge Wedding Photography It's been all go at Sian Lewis Photography for the last 6 weeks and so my blog has been a little neglected and I have a few posts to catch up on.

We're starting with Rhian and Jarred's wedding at the beautiful Canada Lodge. It was my first time at this venue and I totally fell in love with it. In fact, I'd go as far to say that Canada Lodge is now one of my favourite wedding venues. 

I arrived at Rhian's parents house in the morning to photograph the bridal prep. Like many girls, I have a real thing for shoes and an undying love for 'Sex and the City' so when Rhian handed me her Jimmy Choos, I was in my element. I could easily devote an entire album page to those shoes!

Bridal prep always seems to go so quickly, in what seemed like no time at all, Rhian was in her beautiful dress and walking down the stairs to be met by her dad who looked like he might just burst with pride. 

Once I'd finished with the girls, it was a short drive over to Canada Lodge to photograph Jarred and the boys. Thankfully, at this point in the day, the rain clouds which had been hanging around during the morning decided to go elsewhere and were replaced with big, beautifully fluffy white clouds which gave me the most amazing lighting and backdrop for the groom and groomsmen photos. 


Just as we were finishing the boys shots, the bridesmaids arrived so Jarred was swiftly ushered inside to await the arrival of his bride.
The bridesmaids arrived in a VW camper van and Rhian and her dad were driven in a white convertible VW Beetle courtesy of
LoveDub Weddings.

After a few photos outside, it was time to get the ceremony started. Jarred looked remarkably calm as we waited for Rhian to make her entrance and once again, her dad looked as if he might burst with pride. 

The light in the ceremony room at Canada Lodge is just wonderful thanks to the floor to ceiling windows which let in so much ambient light. It really does make photographing there an absolute joy and is another reason why Canada Lodge has become one my favourite venues. 

Straight after the ceremony, Rhian and Jarred hopped into the VW's for a few photos before we started the group shots. At this point, I have to thank Paul from LoveDub Weddings for helping me balance on the front bumper of the Beetle for some high perspective shots.

If I get the opportunity to shoot down on guests for the group shots then I normally take it but Canada Lodge is too pretty not to use as backdrop. With everyone stood on the balcony and the beautiful fluffy clouds and pine trees behind, it really did make a spectacular shot. 

After the formal group shots it was time to have a little fun with the bridal party photos. It's fair to say that they really entered into the spirit of things and we got really great images.

Once we'd completed all the group photos, it was time for one of my favourite parts of the day, the bride and groom portraits. Canada Lodge has no shortage of fabulous places to use and I was quite spoiled for choice but I knew we just had to use the swing for some feature shots. The cloudy sky really came into its own here!


After the speeches (which I can honestly say were some of the best I've ever heard) Rhian and Jarred cut their beautiful cake which was adorned with sugar paste flowers and topped off with a miniature Eiffel Tower which completed their Parisian themed table plan and place settings. 

Shortly after the cake-cutting, the evening guests stared arriving and Rhian and Jarred took to the floor for the first dance. 
As the sun started to set, we nipped out onto the balcony for my signature umbrella shot and then one final image of Jarred and the groomsmen. 

I loved capturing every moment of Rhian and Jarred's wedding, both they and their families and friends were so incredibly welcoming and friendly, it made the day an absolute pleasure from start to finish.
Seeing how much love and support Rhian and Jarred have from the people around them, I have no doubt that their marriage will go strength to strength and I wish them all the very best for the future. 

(Sian Lewis Photography) Canada Lake and Lodge', 'wedding photography', 'beautiful wedding photography', 'award winning wedding photographer', weddings South Wales Wedding photographer Wed, 01 Oct 2014 15:10:42 GMT
Amy and Tim got married I've known Amy for just over 30 years; we built a firm friendship during nursery school thanks to a mutual love of eating play dough. Our friendship continued throughout primary and secondary school (even after Amy broke a school window with my head when we were 9 years old). We would always partner up at our tap and jazz class on a Wednesday evening and also at our Saturday morning drama class. It's safe to say that we were as thick as thieves and always getting up to some sort of mischief. 

It goes without saying that I was over the moon when Amy asked me to photograph her wedding and as we discussed her plans and she filled me in on all the details, I knew it was going to be a really special day.

On the morning of the wedding, I arrived at Amy's Bristol home in the middle of torrential rain and a thunder and lightening storm (that wasn't the weather I ordered from Mother Nature). I kept my fingers crossed that it would have stopped by the time we were ready to leave for the registry office.

Amy was remarkably calm when I arrived as were her bridesmaids, Gemma, Michelle and Jen. We've all been friends since school and it was lovely to be able to spend time with them on such a special occasion. 


Once the girls had put on their 50s style bridesmaid dresses, they helped Amy into her beautiful dress. This is one of my favourite moments of the day and it's normally at this point that it all becomes very real for the bride.

I headed off the registry office ahead of the bridal party and thankfully it had stopped raining by the time I arrived. 
I love Bristol Registry Office, it used to be the town hall and has retained all the beautiful original features inside. The ceiling of the Lantern Room is just exquisite and I was very glad that Tim and Amy had chosen it for their ceremony. 

This was the first time that I'd met Tim and like his bride-to-be, he was also very calm and relaxed.

The bridesmaids led the way into the ceremony followed by Tim and Amy's daughters, Seren and Ava, who did a great job as flower girls.

Tim and Amy wrote their own vows to say during the exchanging of rings and at this point, I knew that they were clearly destined to be together! They both made reference to various 80s films and TV shows; they both started by stating their names followed by 'by the power of Greyskull' and Amy declared that Tim was the Corey to her Topanga, a wonderful reference to the show Boy Meets World which was a firm favourite of ours.

Amy's elder sister, Louise, did a beautiful reading as did Seren who recited 'I want to be your personal penguin'.

Before heading off to the reception, there was just time for a few photos on the registry office steps and a few of Tim and Amy in their wedding car, which in this case was a fabulous VW camper van!

The reception venue was the utterly delightful village hall at Westbury on Trym which really is the most gorgeous building and had been so beautifully decorated. 

After some fun and quirky group shots, it was time for the wedding breakfast followed by the speeches. Amy's dad, Brian, had some wonderful tales to tell which were enhanced by a variety of photos, some of which also brought back very happy memories for me.
The speeches were rounded off by bridesmaid Michelle who reduced just about everyone to tears.

After the cake cutting and first dance, I took Tim and Amy outside for a few final photos in the soft evening light which is my favourite time to shoot. The warm, inviting lights in the village hall made such a pretty backdrop for them.

I wish Tim, Amy, Seren and Ava all the love and happiness for the future and I'll always look back on their day with very fond memories. 

(Sian Lewis Photography) Thu, 31 Jul 2014 11:05:12 GMT
Sara and Mo are getting married! I first met Sara and Mo a couple of years ago through a mutual friend. They're a great couple who I get on really well with so I was delighted when they asked me to capture their wedding.

I try to reflect a couple's personality during pre wedding shoots so I knew that Sara and Mo's shoot needed to be fun. We chose to shoot at Porthkerry Park as the viaduct makes a pretty awesome backdrop for photos.

Mid evening is my favourite time to shoot because of the amazing quality of the light; the low sun gives everything a golden glow and gives everything wonderful definition thanks to the shadows. It's easy to see why it's called the golden hour.

Sara and Mo have a very relaxed, easygoing relationship and I think their photos really convey just how comfortable they are in each others company. Shooting with my zoom lens gave them plenty of room to be themselves and to let their hair down.

I'm so excited to shoot their wedding at Canada Lodge next month, fingers crossed we'll have equally gorgeous weather. 


(Sian Lewis Photography) Mon, 21 Jul 2014 00:20:21 GMT
Emily and Andy Got Married Last week I had a particularly special wedding, that of my cousin Emily and her fiancee Andy who were married at the  beautiful New House Country Hotel on the outskirts of Cardiff.

Emily, her mum Liz and bridesmaids began their bridal prep at Belle Toujours on Cathedral Road. The lavish decor provided a wonderful setting for the bridal prep photos (I totally fell in love with their mirrors!) 


Once the ladies were looking beautiful (and boy did they look beautiful) it was back to Liz's house for the final stages of getting ready.

I really love this part of the day, it's like the ultimate girl bonding session and it gives  me the opportunity to capture some nice little details. 

Once Liz had helped Emily put her dress on, the bridesmaids, headed up by Emily's sister Lucy, were on hand to help with the final touches. 

Emily chose for her grandfather (my great uncle Duncan who is 91 years old) to give her away. When he arrived with my great aunt Jean, I realised just how hard it was going to be to keep my emotions under control. 
The look on his face as Emily made her way down the stairs was just wonderful.

Finally it was time to head to the venue. When I arrived it was trying very hard to rain but thankfully it held off. I was grateful for the clouds though as they make the light very soft and pretty.

Uncle Duncan looked so very proud as he and Emily arrived in a beautiful white Rolls Royce.

I knew right from the start that there were likely to be tears as uncle Duncan walked Emily up the aisle but thankfully I wasn't the only one crying (I did have the luxury of being able to hide behind my camera though)

Watching Emily and Andy exchange their vows was a wonderful experience and I couldn't help but think how lucky I was to be able to capture those moments for them.

Once the formal part of the day was over, it was time for mingling with guests before capturing the group photos. I like to mix things up a little for these so in addition to formal shots, I throw in a few fun ones (because let's face it, no one stands still with their hands at their sides during a wedding). There's normally an unspoken rivalry between the girls and the boys as to who can out-pose each other (to date it's always a draw)

Following a truly delicious wedding breakfast, it was time for the speeches. Liz's beautiful words about Emily got the tears flowing (which reminds me that I need to invest in waterproof mascara). Andy's adoration for his new bride was very much apparent and best man Andrew finished up by making everyone laugh with a short but well written speech.

Emily and Andy opted for a one tier cake with lots of beautifully decorated cupcakes, something which is becoming more and more popular with couples. 

After the speeches and cake, I stole Emily and Andy away for their bride and groom portrait session. The rain scuppered our plans for going outside but thankfully the New House Hotel has some really beautiful areas inside and we made full use of them.

Finally the sun obliged and the rain cleared and we managed to get outside to make use of the fantastic view across Cardiff (I have to say, I fell a little bit more in love with my city that evening)

I find that wedding days fly by really quickly and Emily and Andy's was no exception. In what seemed like no time at all, the evening celebrations were kicking off and it was time for the first dance. 

We finished off the day with a few more shots and used off camera flash to create some beautiful low light portraits. 

I had the most amazing day capturing Emily and Andy's day and I wish them all the love, luck and happiness in the world. 



(Sian Lewis Photography) Cardiff Country Glamorgan Hotel House New South Vale Wales Wedding of photography wedding Tue, 08 Jul 2014 12:02:57 GMT
Beautiful Lily High Street has welcomed some lovely new shops in recent months, including the fantastic new florist Beautiful Lily which opened in February of this year. 

Owned and run by Helen Huggins, Beautiful Lily offer a fantastic range of flowers and garden and outdoor gifts (I especially love the floral wellies from the Laura Ashley range)
With bouquets starting at just £15 there's something to suit everyones budget and there is free local delivery for orders over £25.

Helen has been a florist since 2003 and loves that her job allows her to be creative with flowers. Her favourite aspect of the job is being able to have creative license with arrangements. 

Getting married? Beautiful Lily offer a full wedding service with everything from button holes to centre pieces and stunning bridal bouquets. You can either pop in to see Helen at 92 High Street or give her a call on 01446 677010 OR 07547 433889

(Sian Lewis Photography) Sat, 31 May 2014 11:52:45 GMT
Carys' fairy photo shoot It may have been a wet and miserable day yesterday but that didn't stop Carys from sporting a big smile during her fairy photo shoot! 

Typically, when I ask a little girl what her favourite colour is the answer is pink. However, Carys informed me her favourite colour is blue (which also happens to be my favourite colour). Her mum told me that a few months ago it was pink and that the change is attributed to a certain princess from 'Frozen'. I'm wondering how many other girls are going to have changed their favourite colour in favour of Elsa's beautiful blue gown.....

Carys picked out a beautiful pink and purple dress, purple wings and a purple flowered headband and she looked every inch the perfect little flower fairy. 

Like many of the girls who come along for a shoot, Carys was a little shy to begin with but before long, she was posing like a pro.

I think my favourite part of the fairy dell experience is going through the images during the viewing session and it was lovely to see the reaction of Carys' mum and grandma as the images came up on the screen. Now I can't wait to hand over their prints. 


(Sian Lewis Photography) fairy photo shoots Sun, 25 May 2014 17:53:40 GMT
Monthly Awards Every month I enter the Guild of Photographers image of the month contest (and then spend the rest of the month trying to forget about it).

It's an agonising wait on the 21st of each month when the results are released and this month was no exception. Given that the judging criteria seems to have become a little more stringent recently, I was convinced that my 3 images weren't going to get anything. So it was a huge relief to log in and find that all 3 images had received bronze bars (with 1 of them being just 2 points away from a silver bar).

This months results brings my total award tally to 12 bronze and 2 silver bars. 

So what exactly do these awards mean? They basically mean that the image has been judged by a panel of professional photographers to be of a good professional standard:

"Images that are very well crafted at a professional level (A Silver Bar)

Images of a strong standard at a professional level (A Bronze Bar)

Now that the excitement of results day is over, it's time to decide which images to enter this month, and begin the waiting game all over again. 

(Sian Lewis Photography) Fri, 23 May 2014 19:26:41 GMT
Lord Mayor of London On Wednesday of last week I had the pleasure of photographing the Lord Mayor of London, Alderman Fiona Woolf, during her visit to Atradius in Cardiff Bay.

Ms Woolf was introduced to young people on Atradius' graduate scheme before being given a guided tour of the building

I always enjoy shooting at Atradius, particularly on a nice day as it has the most wonderful light not to mention a phenomenal view from the top floor. 


(Sian Lewis Photography) Wed, 30 Apr 2014 12:50:03 GMT
Peter and Jenny got married! After such a fantastic pre wedding shoot I was really excited to shoot Peter and Jenny's wedding and it was everything that I hoped for and more. 

Getting ready

Jenny got ready at her parents house which had the most beautiful natural light (and anyone who knows me will know how much I love beautiful light) 

Everyone was remarkably calm and relaxed so we had plenty of time to get lots of beautiful shots. I really love this part of the day!


Here come the boys


Peter elected to have two best men and they arrived in style in a beautiful vintage VW camper van. They only had a short (and slightly nervous) wait until Jenny arrived with her dad.


Here come the girls

The bridesmaids arrived in a gorgeous vintage car along with Peter and Jenny's daughter, Layla, who was their flower girl. She waited very patiently for her mummy to arrive and proudly showed off her butterfly wand to the arriving guests. 


Here comes the bride

Jenny looked totally radiant and every inch the perfect bride when she arrived with a very proud looking dad. The emotion on Peter's face as he turned to glimpse his bride for the first time was beautiful. 

The ceremony

The ceremony was beautiful with readings from family and friends and as with most ceremonies, it seemed to fly by. It's always a wonderful feeling to see two people exchange their vows surrounded by people who love them. 

Bride and groom shots

After the ceremony, the wedding party headed back to the beautiful Angel Hotel in the centre of Cardiff and following the group photos, it was time for some bride and groom portraits. Peter and Jenny were just as relaxed and amiable as they were during their pre wedding shoot and we got some really beautiful photos. 

The party

For Peter and Jenny's first dance, they were beautifully serenaded by X Factor contestant James Williams who got the party off to a swinging start with a fantastic medley of Rat Pack songs. Then it was Peter's turn to grace with the stage with an awesome rendition of 'Miss Jones' (and let me tell you, the boy can sing!)

All in all, I loved being a part of Peter and Jenny's special day and wish them all the love and happiness in the world. 

(Sian Lewis Photography) Tue, 29 Apr 2014 18:28:49 GMT
Stephanie and Anthony got married When Stephanie and Anthony came to the studio with their daughter just over a month ago, I knew right away that they were going to be great to work with on their wedding day. 

Like most wedding photographers, I keep a close eye on the weather reports in the run up to a wedding - rain and bright sunshine both bring their fair share of problems; I actually love days with lots of clouds to keep the light soft and beautiful and yesterday, mother nature certainly obliged me.

It was my first visit to Ty Newydd Country Hotel which sits on the outskirts of the Brecon Beacons (one of my favourite places in the world) and as I drove up the winding driveway I could see there would be no shortage of lovely places to shoot Stephanie and Anthony's bride and groom portraits.

The day played out perfectly and it was so touching to see Anthony shed a few tears as he awaited the arrival of his beautiful bride.

It's always nice to come away from a wedding having had a great day and knowing that you have gorgeous photos for your bride and groom and yesterday I left on a real high.

Congratulations Stephanie and Anthony and thank you for making me part of your special day. 

(Sian Lewis Photography) Country Hotel Newydd Ty Sun, 13 Apr 2014 18:26:03 GMT
Peter and Jenny are getting married! I first met Peter and Jenny in December 2012 when they came to the studio for a family photoshoot. I remember that day particularly well because it was the day that my iMac computer went a little crazy and died on me. By a stroke of luck/fate, it turned out that Peter worked at a computer repair shop and to cut a long story short, he got it all fixed for me 

A few months later I got a message from Peter asking if he and Jenny could have a chat about their wedding photography. I of course said yes! It seemed so far off when they booked it but it's come around really quickly and I am so looking forward to capturing their special day.

A couple of weeks ago the three of us headed over to Cosmeston Lakes Country Park for a relaxed, informal pre wedding shoot. I love these sessions, they're normally lots of fun and I get a good idea how the couple will be in front of the camera on the day. With couples that I don't already know, it's a really good way to build a nice relationship with them, something which I feel is really important. 

Peter and Jenny were both great to photograph and I know we are going to have so much fun on their wedding day.

(Sian Lewis Photography) Fri, 04 Apr 2014 13:28:34 GMT
Katie and Martin got married, Pencoed House Wedding I first met with Katie and Martin a few months ago when we did their pre wedding consultation at the glorious Pencoed House Estate. As venues go, it's entirely perfect and I was very excited about going back for the actual wedding. 

Katie and Martin were married at St Teilo's church in Whitchurch and had the most wonderful ceremony complete with a folk group and two fabulous singers who wowed the other guests with their amazing voices whilst the register was being signed. 

Then it was back to Pencoed House where the guests were welcomed with champagne and canapes. Whilst everyone was mingling, Katie, Martin and I snuck off for some lovely bride and groom portraits. Judy, who owns and lives in the house along with husband Clive, was on hand to help with Katie's beautiful dress and veil. 

There was no shortage of beautiful spots to shoot in, it really is a photographers paradise. 

Best wishes to Katie and Martin for the future. 

(Sian Lewis Photography) House Pencoed South Wales bride glamorgan groom of photography vale weddings Fri, 09 Aug 2013 14:27:30 GMT
Jessica and Ryan's wedding Towards the end of last year, I had the pleasure of photographing Jessica and Ryan and their gorgeous new baby, Samuel.

A few months ago I received a message from Jessica to say she and Ryan were getting married and was I available to do the photos. Luckily, their wedding was scheduled on one of the only days when I wasn't photographing another wedding so I happily accepted. 

It was a very small wedding with just a few family and friends at a lovely church in Llandaff. It was made all the more special as Jessica's uncle presided over the vows. 

After some lovely informal shots in the church ground, the bridal party headed into the church hall for cake and champagne. 

I consider it a real honour to be asked to be part of such a special day, even more so it's a couple I've worked with before. 


(Sian Lewis Photography) Llandaff Vale and bride glamorgan groom of south wales wedding weddings Mon, 15 Jul 2013 15:09:13 GMT
Website update!


You may have noticed that the website has undergone a fairly radical update! We've now come up to date with our branding and some gorgeous new photos from recent weddings and portrait sessions. 

Speaking of weddings, wedding season is well and truly underway and there have been some absolute beauties recently! As a photographer, I feel so lucky playing such an important part in the proceedings. 

(Sian Lewis Photography) Mon, 13 May 2013 19:40:27 GMT
Busy busy Phew, what a busy few months it's been! So much so that there's been very little time to blog. Hopefully you've been kept up to date via the Facebook page but just in case you missed it, here's what's been happening as Sian Lewis Photo. 

November saw the 1st anniversary of the studio along with the huge development of moving to a bigger and better studio. Thankfully the new premises are just 6 doors down from the old shop so it was a quick and easy move. 
The new studio is perfect and allows me so much more room to work and provides me with a huge amount of storage space. It's just perfect! There are still some finishing touches to get done but I'm getting there!

I finished off 2012 with two lovely weddings... and started 2013 off with the most beautiful snowy wedding at Decourceys Manor which closely resembled Narnia! 

Wedding season has well and truly kicked off and this weekend will bring my 9th and 10th wedding of the year so far. 

So what else is new? Well the fairy dell shoots have been launched and are so far proving very popular. We've had some beautiful fairies in! Cake smash shoots have also been very popular though I'm still not sure who has the most fun during the sessions. 

In the next few weeks you'll notice a few changes to the website so keep your eyes peeled for those. We'll also be releasing details of a brand new very exclusive shoot which has got us really fired up. As if that wasn't enough, we're launching an amazing new contest! 

So that's all for now, ciao bellas!



(Sian Lewis Photography) Thu, 18 Apr 2013 17:46:32 GMT
Fairy shoots! Our fairy dresses have started arriving which means that fairy shoots are just around the corner! 

The shoots will last roughly 25 minutes during which time your little girl will be transformed into a beautiful fairy with a fairy dress, wings and a wand.

Full details have yet to be finalised but the shoots will come as part of a package. For example, package A will include the photo shoot and a 9x6 print for £40. Other packages will include various other products and we have some seriously beautiful products which will be available, most of which will have a fairy theme.

We anticipate that these shoots are going to be very popular (we've already received a lot of enquiries) so early booking is going to be essential.

We're also looking to extend the shoot into a party format for up to 6 children. Upon arrival, each child will be given a fairy dress, wings and a wand then they'll head into the salon which adjoins our studio. Here their hair will be curled or pinned up before being finished off with some glitter spray (all fairies have to sparkle). 
Then it's back to the studio for a mini photo shoot with each child having an individual photo before finishing off with a group shot. 

Price will be £30 per child and each child will receive a 6x4 print of the group shot as a special reminder of their fairy experience. 



(Sian Lewis Photography) Sat, 14 Jul 2012 00:16:43 GMT
New products This month we're very excited to introduce some brand new and exclusive products! Designed in-house, they are completely unique to Sian Lewis Photo. We proudly present the Candy Stripe Canvas. 

In addition to this, we also have the Pretty Pictures Canvas

And our very patriotic Red, White and Blue canvas

All canvasses measure 18x10 inches and are hand stretched onto wooden frames and finished with a protective coating to give them a beautiful sheen. The introductory price is just £85!! These can also be created using your own photos, contact us for details. 

(Sian Lewis Photography) Wed, 07 Mar 2012 01:14:20 GMT