I often get asked 'where do you find all these beautiful locations?'. Sometimes I think people assume they are secret places that only photographers visit! I have spent a lot of time scouting the local area in the different seasons; trying to find bluebells, daffodils, lavender, evergreen forests, autumnal archways, red ivy. So I thought I'd list my favourite places to visit with my camera and show you some of the results. That way you can consider them for future photographs or just visit them for the fun that they bring!
Langley Park and Black Park
Langley Park - I think I was here nearly every weekend during the autumn season. It is just beautiful. There are so many different shades of colour on the trees at this time of year and some really quirky places to take photos (interesting brickwork, steps, archways etc). It's beautiful all year round; with the rhododendron's making a beautiful backdrop in the summer months. I'm a mum of two boys and it's got something for everyone; a lovely coffee shop with super friendly staff and nice food, a playground for the kids, endless places to walk the dogs, big open fields for picnics and games of frisbee. It's one of my favourite places around.
Black Park - Just down the road from Langley Park, it is again a winner for the kids and the dogs! Playground, big cafe, water for dogs to splash in, a lake to walk around. We have also done some great activities there too - most recently we took part in an elf and fairy trail which the kids loved. Photography wise it has a beautiful lake backdrop, bright pink summer flowers and a forest setting to explore in the winter months.
Oakley Court Hotel
I don't live too far from here but it was only when a client suggested this as a location recently that I decided to visit. I am so glad they did it is beautiful. Not only is the house stunning, but the grounds are set on the river and you really feel like you're exploring a bit of history when you walk around. It's a photographers dream; there are archways of leaves that lead to 'secret tree tunnels', Ivy covering brickwork, shady spots by the river. I haven't visited in the summer months yet but i'm told it's a fantastic place to have an 'al fresco' meal.
The staff are so helpful and very child friendly. You don't have to be a guest to enjoy it. I have since been with the children and they have crawled around in the library quite happily while we sip our coffee's before going outside.
This is situated in between Cookham Dean and Bisham and is a little gem when it comes to spring time. The towering trees provide some beautiful shade for photographs and there are blankets of bluebells around May time. I have visited the last two years and can't wait to return this spring. It's a lovely walk and a great place to explore
Mayfield Lavender farm
This was a new find for me last year and I fell in love with it big time. I already have a number of people booked in for photographs this year as well. It's quite something to sit on the floor and just see purple for miles. The farm is a beautiful, tranquil place to visit, with a separate nursery in Epsom selling their own produce and gifts.
The Look Out Discovery Centre Bracknell
If you haven't been it's a fantastic place for kids of all ages. The forest aside, there is a huge wooden playground and an indoor science discovery centre packed with fun, hands on activities for the kids. My favourite day to visit is a bright one, as you can walk through the forest and catch the sun's rays beaming through the trees. This photo was taken on a crisp winters day just after christmas.
Local recreational grounds
Another thing to say is that I don't discount local parks as locations. If you are clever about angles you can get some fantastic shots while avoiding buildings / playgrounds / bins etc! Last year I did two sessions that were taken in Kidwells park Maidenhead for example. It's surrounded by roads and buildings but we still managed to get some stunning photos. One thing I have learned is that kids love leaves - so if there is an abundance of leaves you're onto a winner. The plus side for the children is that if they are good they get to visit the park straight after! A little bit of bribery can work wonders ;-)
Local Fields and open space
Big open spaces are great for sunset photos. Especially of children as they can run free with the sun shining behind them or have plenty of space to pose them without them being watched and feeling intimidated. I have used many different places but the one i like to go to is Clewer park. There are enough trees that the light shines through the to create some stunning sunsets.
I do hope you find this useful.
More from these locations below....
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