do the earth a favour, don't hide your magic

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU to Alice, Gareth and to Heather at Braw Brides for today’s feature. Click here to see Alice and Gareth’s ace day at Colstoun House last Spring, featuring a ‘surprise’ performance of The Book of Love by our groom, shit table football and totally lush loved up times in amongst the fig plants.


Wedding couples, don’t forget you can come say hi to me and the gold star top wedding creatives of all the lands on the evening of Thursday July 18 at The Engine Works in Glasgow.

Ticket info here.

These evening Wedding Collective markets are always a brilliant place to get totally overwhelmed with love and ideas and creative outpourings of awesome so just do yerselves a favour and come and get the pros to hug you through the stresses and strains of wedding planning.


Families of all shapes and sizes -

Sign up to my mailing list for 20% off a cheeky wee summer family shoot. More info on my last blog post here.

We go for a wander and you do what you do and I creep about and it’s fun, honest! July/August times available for the ‘summer’ school holidays so subscribe and noise me up with some dates.

You can read a little about what the images in the little slideshow there meant to Kris over on her Bon Tot instagram page here and here.

I’m guilty of always putting this off as I hate being photographed but having shot with Kris, Graham and CC, it made me really wish I’d sort my shit out so I can keep these little memories for my boy and I. CC has just the most expressive wee face and it’s a treat to have those captured to keep safe as she grows up.

So, aye. DAE IT —————>


do the earth a favour, don’t hide your magic
— yung pueblo

So last time I started a wee introduction to sharing some stuff from yer actual genius wedding industry suppliers with a wee bit about how Cori from Makeup by Cori deals with anxious times. Next up is Audrey Barnes.

Audrey and I worked together in a previous life at Electric Circus. I’ve photographed her beautiful face while chatting to her beautiful soul many times too. So it is really great that she is one of the first few folks to participate in my Unhelpful Words portrait series.

When i asked Audrey a few questions about dealing with anxiety and stress when event planning, inclusivity at weddings and the like, she sent me just the best answers that she’s going to have to be a blog post all on her own cos (although she said I should) I don’t want to edit that shit down….so for now, here’s a wee introduction to what she does now and why she took part in the portrait series. Her super helpful and insightful event chat will be coming soon and you’ll find it totally useful, I promise.

Hey! I’m a wee tech and creative industries nerd, with a background in events, content creation, design, organisational strategy, and intercultural communications – championing equality and inclusion where ‘ere I go!

You can find me at workshops and events, as an organiser, facilitator, and/or visitor. Or, hanging out in the digital space, writing about, cheering on, and celebrating the ways we can bring joy to more folks in the world.

My unhelpful words portrait – aside from being a wonderful opportunity to collab with one of my favourite creatives – was a message for us all on being gentle with ourselves, in world that pushes us for constant productivity and perseverance. That’s why I chose the word ‘Resilient’ – a word that gets thrown around a lot by “motivational” folks, and those congratulating others when they accomplish great things despite the odds.

While often there’s good intentions behind comments made to those who have been resilient, there’s a wide-spread neglect that accompanies it. A neglect to explicitly recognise the dark side of resilience. That is, the impacts of keeping going without rest, and experiences of trauma – whether they be rooted in internal or external sources.

For example – you may know, or be, someone who experienced bullying. Yet, kept going, and made a life. Perhaps succeeding spectacularly (in whatever way success manifests for you/them). People who know what was overcome may shout “Wow! So resilient!”. Seeing you as strong, and a person to turn to for advice and/or support, since you come with wisdom as a result of your journey. This can be very unhelpful when we don’t slow down to check in, recognising that the memories and impacts of things remain, weighing down possibilities for genuine joy and health.

If you have a resilient friend who you can turn to, that’s so friggin’ wonderful! But make sure you recognise the cost for them – they need rest, compassion, and a person to turn to, too. If you are that person, be kind to yourself. Remember “don’t set yourself on fire to keep others warm” – good boundaries and the timely saying of “no” is a gift to all around you.

We all have mental health, we all have times of struggle and I think the more we make discussing our mental health commonplace the better for everyone, wherever they’re at. Aye, so…email me on hello@solenphotography.co.uk if you’d like get involved in the portrait project.


Busy times around here with stuff and things…But what Audrey says about stepping back and slowing down to check in with things is totally true and something I’ve been making a wee bit of time for in amongst all this photographing and typing and pacing about my beach as I do…I’m reading Inward by Yung Pueblo just now and it’s blowing my tiny preoccupied mind. So insightful and I feel zen as heck after a few of his words about letting go of past emotional pain and learning to fully understand ourselves. Follow him on instagram and get in about his stories as he posts daily ‘3 thoughts’ stories which are just the bees knees.

Jeezo, I could rant on, I have much to say and share but I need to pace myself cos we only just talked about that.

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