Family films by TaraD

As someone who is used to shooting weddings, a day full of beautiful things and beautiful beaming people, this last year has been a great challenge to stop and view what I shoot differently.

I am used to making everything look “perfect”, often ignoring the “mess” and creating the beautiful finished look.

Without weddings I have chosen to look at every day things in a fresh way that is equally as beautiful. 


These are often the things that we take for granted. If the last year has taught us anything, it should be not to take anything for granted again. 
Planting strawberries is a simple task but now I have recorded it in such a way, that it is a beautiful memory for me and my husband and I know it will also be a beautiful memory for our boys to relive, maybe with their children. 

Family films were born out of the idea to stop living for tomorrow and wanting this all “to be over”. Instead let’s start living for today.

Let’s find the beautiful in today because when we start to look, it is everywhere. 


Take a look…. 

If you would like me to capture your family story please get in touch and I can book you in for this summer.

Past clients can avail of a fantastic offer for 2021.

Dates can be rescheduled if needed. 

We will be working in line with all government guidelines. 


Lets create beautiful memories for the future. 

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Why should I have more than one photographer? by TaraD

Your photos will be one the most important things you get to keep for memories throughout your life, they will be available for future generations and they will capture the special moments of your day forever.

We’ve had cases where we captured a photograph and it later turned out to be the last photograph of that person. It is often that moment when people realise the true value of a photograph. It then becomes absolutely priceless. This is just an example of why capturing as much of your special day as possible is important. With that said, we list a few quick tips on why this is better achieved with a team instead of a single photographer.

A team can be in multiple places at once

It is standard now to capture both bride and groom pre-ceremony and often this happens at different locations. A team can split up and cover the different events of the morning. This also applies to the most important part of the ceremony as the bride walks up the aisle or venue. One photographer can be at the front while another one can be at the back. This ensures that the reaction of both partners is captured in the photos, as well as the reaction from the guests.

Each photographer has their own personality / style that is reflected in their photos. By having multiple photographers you will get photos that vary in perspective and style while still blending the story of your day. One photographer might be more into the small details, another photographer might specialize in capturing people’s expressions throughout the day, another photographer might be really good at aerial photography. You will have more variety to choose from for your album.

An obvious advantage is that you will get more photos to choose from than if you choose a single photographer as they are covering more ground. That goes hand in hand with the fact that you will also have more special moments of the day. Multiple photographers can cover different parts of the reception simultaneously and they can capture the first dance from different locations and angles for example.

 

 

 

 

A team can also save you time throughout the day and make sure things are running smoothly and on schedule. While one photographer is shooting, another one can be fixing the poses, the dresses or arranging other details. One photographer can get to a next location ahead of the bridal party and be ready ahead of time, while another photographer finishes the previous location. There are several instances throughout the day, where the team can split up to save precious time.

If you choose a team that has both genders (husband/wife) or (man/woman) you also get a slightly different perspective to your photos. Women and men look at the wedding day from slightly different viewpoints. A female might better understand the brides concerns during pre-ceremony and try to capture those special moments and often help with details of makeup, dresses and heirlooms and so on.

A male might better blend in with the boys throughout the day and put them more at ease to capture funny and special moments. We are not implying this is always the case and that if the situation were reversed they can’t do a fantastic job for the day! We’re just saying that traditionally this set up puts everyone more at ease!

When planning a wedding on a budget it’s sometimes difficult to decide where to ‘save’.

Should it be the florist, the venue, or the photographers? Keep in mind the wedding lasts one day (in most cultures) and the venue, the music, the flowers will become a memory, but your photos will be all you have left to remember all those details and that can capture the love and joy of your special day. Not just for now, but for future generations to see also.

Diana x

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International Chocolate Day by TaraD

Do you know anybody that doesn’t like chocolate?

We don’t, we’ve never met anyone who doesn’t like that sweet, smooth little piece of heaven.

Today is International Chocolate Day, and yes, that is a thing! We seem to celebrate so many other things, so why not celebrate something we all love so much?

Let’s admit it, we all find excuses to buy, eat of gift chocolates, so why not actually eat them on the day we’re celebrating it?

For those of you who like fun facts, chocolate has been around since 1750BC, as evidence found in Mexico.
Chocolate originates with the cocoa tree and it takes roughly 400 cocoa beans to make 1 pound of chocolate and 2-
4 days to make a chocolate bar. No wonder it’s considered a luxury.
Lindt, Godiva, Ferrero are all names that most people recognise globally. But who needs those when we have our own amazing chocolates right here in our backyard?

Ireland and Germany rate as the third biggest consumers of chocolate in the world! And it’s no wonder when we have our own brands of delicious chocolate being produced all over the country.

Many of them are hand-made and unique…and what can beat that as a gift? This is the gift that can’t ever go wrong.
If you have a special occasion coming up, like your wedding, or you’re celebrating Valentine’s Day, an anniversary,
birthdays, Mother’s Day, here is a short list of some of Ireland’s best chocolates:

Butlers Chocolates and Cafes https://www.butlerschocolates.com/en

Cadbury Ireland https://www.cadbury.ie/ 
Skelligs Chocolate Factory in Co. Kerry – https://skelligschocolate.com/

Hand made chocolates and an amazing day trip for the family as well to visit the factory and watch the chocolates being made.
Lily O’Brien personalised chocolates and great options for wedding gifts too. https://lilyobriens.ie

https://trufflefairy.ie/ – hand made chocolates. Requires a bit of travelling to Kilkenny but so worth the trip if you’re
into award winning chocolates!
https://chocolategarden.ie/ – another choice for award winning hand-made chocolates, straight out of Co. Carlow.
They accept school tours too!
Regardless of which one you choose, you’ll make a great choice!

Yum yum!

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Postponing your wedding? You may want to read this…. by TaraD

From Heartbroken to excited…..

Since we shot our last wedding on the 14th March 2020, I, (like many others) have been dealing with a rollercoaster of emotions.

I have learnt so much from the last month and feel that I have really grown as a human being (and not just physically with all the extra food I’m snacking on!).

We have been chatting to lots of brides and one mentioned that I had changed her perspective from “heartbroken” to “excited again”.

Just think about that for a moment, from “heartbroken” to “excited” completely opposite emotions.

I then went onto have a business call with a group of business owners and I mentioned in conversation, how I had switched someone’s perspective and it made everyone stop. It was almost a mic drop moment. They felt that my words had potentially changed that woman’s life in a great way and I hadn’t thought of it. They asked how the rest of her day would have continued with her fiancee? Her family? Her friends? To go from upset and heartbreak to being excited again just by reading a heartfelt message that I had sent to her. How would her next phone call go? Instead of tears it would be “but we can do that now instead, we have more time to save for this etc….!”

For me its all about perspective, it is about seeing things from a different point of view. Life has always been that way for me. I studied “To kill a mockingbird” in school and recently again during this lockdown with my 8 year old. I explained to him a quote that has stuck with me ever since. “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view.. until you climb into his skin and walk around in it”.

I think by nature we often become so focused on our own problems that we don’t see others. Not because we are selfish, or careless but because it doesn’t necessarily affect us.

I have noticed online in various wedding groups and heard lots and lots of couples using words like “devastated”…. “heartbroken” …..“torn”.  I began to feel that I was missing something, or maybe they were (un-intentionally of course!). Those words are associated with grief and death, which I could relate to the virus. But I wouldn’t associate them with rescheduling a wedding.

Why? Well, we aren’t talking about cancelling a wedding which is associated with loss and grief when a relationship dissolves. We are talking about postponing. Simply moving the celebration to a later date. This is a chance to breathe. We are always so busy with life and planning a wedding is even more hectic than the everyday stress. Now you have an opportunity to literally just breathe! Have fun together, go for walks (within 2k!), learn more about each other than you ever knew before.

This unprecedented time is like an intense pre marriage course! You are with your spouse 24/7. This time will help you to adjust, to give each other space, even if you can’t physically! You will learn to share jobs at home that you never had to do before. You will learn how to come up with solutions to keep each other sane! 🙂

If you are already parents, you will have a whole other range of challenges and learning opportunities thrown into the mix! 🙂 All the parents reading this are currently saying “HELL YEAH!” 🙂

This time together is incredible. This pause is giving you the opportunity to focus on what you REALLY WANT, without all of the daily distractions and pressures that are normally happening while trying to plan a wedding. You can give it your complete attention now, or very little if you choose to take a break from the planning! Both are perfectly ok, you choose what works for you!

For me  instead of focusing on the fact that I don’t know when we will get to shoot a wedding again. (Just to clarify this is our livelihood. Like many other suppliers, to potentially loose all our weddings this year is not something we can brush off lightly). I am looking at all the opportunities this last month has given me and I am incredibly grateful for that.

Instead of feeling sad every time I get an email with someone changing their wedding date, I am feeling happy that they are now stress free. They can now look forward to their wedding instead of being scared on the lead up to it.

Every morning I start with a coffee and my notebook and list 10 things that I am grateful for. This may sound completely crazy, (or pointless) I know, I thought so too when I was first asked to try it! But what have you got to loose? Try it and see how it makes you feel, how it switches your PERSPECTIVE on things.

How you start to realise how incredibly lucky you really are! You have your health and you are safe. In the world we are living in right now that is worth celebrating.

So lets switch our perspective and see how it makes you feel.

Instead of stressing over how I am going to make ends meet, I am grateful for the amazing amount of focused quality time with my children. I am learning about them, watching them grow, teaching them daily life skills as well as the home schooling! I have got to know them both better which seems crazy, but we now have much more time to sit and talk. It isn’t rushed or interrupted by me looking at the screen editing/emailing/designing while agreeing and nodding to them. (I know, great parenting! As I said at the beginning I have learnt a lot!).

I have also learnt how much I genuinely love my career and I can’t wait to return to telling people’s stories. I really miss it!

I miss creating, but now I am capturing my own story and my children’s story, for their futures.

Today I am grateful for the gorgeous sunrise and another opportunity to work in my garden. I am grateful for my family and friends health, my morning coffee, my husband, as we are continuing to work great as a team keeping everyone upbeat. The roof over our heads, the chats I will have with friends, the books I now have time to read, the memories I am getting the opportunity to create.

I am grateful for you, if you took the time to read the longest post I have ever written! I hope it helps!

With love,

Tara x

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Irish Wedding Awards, Creative Photographer of the Year! by TaraD

Irish Wedding Awards, Creative Photographer of the Year
Winners of Creative Photographer of the Year 2020.

 

Wow what an incredible way to start the year!
We decided to go to Dublin last Monday as we were finalists in the category of:
“Creative Photographer of the Year” for the Irish Wedding awards.
We have never been nominated or attended these national awards before.

 

 

As it was on a Monday night in January and we knew a few other suppliers attending, one being a lovely past couple of ours Karen and Anthony (Karen is a florist and was also a finalist in the awards, https://www.facebook.com/flowersbykarenlimerick/ ).
We thought it would be a great excuse to go away for an evening and catch up with them and some other fantastic people, including Sharon from Ballyseede Castle!
Little did we know it would turn into a night of massive celebrations as WE WON!!!!
So there are not too many pictures taken that night by ourselves as we were too busy celebrating! But there are hundreds taken by the fabulous Nina Val and you can see those on the Irish Wedding Awards page. Thank you Nina for capturing the moments for all of us suppliers.

It is an AMAZING boost for us in January as we have been making huge plans for 2020 and we are starting it in the best possible way! I must say a huge thank you, for those of you who nominated us (that was a surprise in itself!) and for the judges who felt we deserved such an accolade. We are extremely grateful!

Just after we hit post on this blog another email pinged through to say we are one of the IRISH TOP 100 WEDDING SUPPLIERS! Wahoooo! 🙂

 

Winners badge

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Dunloe Hotel & Gardens by TaraD

The Dunloe Hotel and Gardens is set in a 64 acre estate, overlooking the beautiful Gap of Dunloe in Co. Kerry.

After its recent renovation, we had the pleasure of spending a day at the hotel, creating and directing a Wedding Inspirational Photoshoot which has since been featured in the Wedding Journal Magazine.

Our inspiration was led largely by the venue, the modern, yet sophisticated edge that it has. We co ordinated with suppliers who think outside the box, creating something different while still appealing to a wide range of brides.

We were delighted to work with some fantastic local suppliers such as Cathy Troth, who designed all the incredible headpieces for our models. I have had the pleasure of knowing Cathy even before her business began. She is an incredible artist who pays close attention to her clients needs and is able to create something special from the most random of starting points! It is inspiring to watch. So if you need a headpiece for a wedding or an event I would suggest that you give her a call!

Suzanne from Designer flowers by Kerry Wedding Flowers, who created the amazing floral bouquets! I mean have any of you ever seen something so different? WOW!

 

   

Tricia from Tricia O Sullivan hair and beauty http://kerryhairdresser.ie can literally do hair with her eyes closed. Her talents never cease to amaze me!

Likewise with Georgina who works her magic as a make up artist, you can see more of her work here https://georginamackessymakeup.com

They are a great team to work with and I always recommend them for wedding days as you need experienced, talented suppliers to make your day run smoothly!

 

The dresses were all supplied by Laura Kate’s Bridal boutique and I have honestly never seen such beautiful gowns before.

Our two amazing models Savannagh and Sarah Jane from the Norma O Donoghue model agency, showed all of our work with glamour and grace.

Thank you to all of you involved and a special thank you to the staff and management at The Dunloe for supporting our creativity and letting us explore the amazing setting that is ideal for any wedding day.

I hope some of our ideas, have given you ideas for your special day!

If you would like to see some of our real weddings at The Dunloe please contact us!

 

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Fairytale Weddings by TaraD

I often refer to Ballyseede Castle as my second home, (a girl can dream can’t she?)….

There is always such as the incredibly warm welcome received from the moment you step over Mr Higgins or Molly (the irish wolfhounds) who are often found lying on the steps of the castle.

So when you are planning your special day, it would be silly not to consider a castle for the perfect setting!

It is a Photographer’s dream as well as a couples. You can get married on site, in or outside. The gardens and various rooms of the castle mean that you do not need to travel off site for your photo shoot giving you more time to spend with your guests!

The food is AMAZING, the decor is beautiful and it is located only minutes from Tralee town and Kerry airport which makes it super easy for your guests!

Don’t just take our word for it, look at some of the features that have been published of our weddings there….

Danica & Jack

 

A Charming Ballyseede Castle Wedding by Tara Donoghue Photography

 

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