{The Ordinary Moments 15} #31 ‘My Camera and I’

I was sat in the garden of my Dads house yesterday, we had gone over there for the morning to see my Grandparents who were visiting from Wales. The girls were running around in the sunshine, we were all just chatting and relaxing at the table, and my 93 year old Grandpa turned to me and said ‘The only thing is there is something missing today- where’s your big camera Katie?’

It made me smile, firstly because he called it my big camera which is actually what I call it too, and secondly he noticed that I wasn’t snapping away- usually if the weather is nice and we are outside, the camera will be there too. The funny thing was it actually was in the car I just hadn’t bought it in yet, every time my Grandparents are here we take a few photos of them and the girls as I absolutely love capturing those memories. In a slightly morbid way, they are 93 and 90 and I just want to capture every single memory I can.

nanagrandpa july15a

I ended up taking this photo, but it got me thinking about my camera and my love of photography. It’s a running joke on both sides of my family now that if we are having any sort of special occasion, or sometimes even just utterly normal days too, then my big camera will be there. And if I haven’t bothered to bring that then no doubt I will take at least a couple of photos on my iPhone instead. It’s just become completely normal to me to take photos every single day, mainly on my phone more than anything else, but I guess that’s our generation- we snap, share, take and preserve memories more than ever before.

I have always been ‘the one’ who likes to take photos. At school and then at uni, I was the one snapping every single moment of our nights out, so much so that my friends wouldn’t ever bother taking their cameras out as they knew I would have mine and would capture the memories for us. Every time we went out at uni, bearing in mind that would be a few times a week, I would buy a disposable camera to take out with me. Even though I had a digital camera, I loved that feeling of going into Boots and getting them developed- we would spend ages laughing over our drunken antics and things from the night that we had forgotten.

In my final year of uni I met Mr E and we became great friends. He was quite interested in photography and on one holiday to Dubai with my Mum I decided to invest in my first DSLR while we were in duty free at the airport. I still remember being so excited about having this big camera and while we were on holiday I artistically shot photographs of cocktails and the beautiful surroundings of our hotel. When I got back to Leeds I got it into my head that I wanted to go back to university and study photography as I was at a little bit of a crossroads over what I wanted to do with my life. Luckily my parents said that was just not going to happen, at least not with them funding it, so that crazy idea never got put in place.

For a while I took lots of photos with my DSLR, but I didn’t really know what to take them of. I had this lovely big camera but didn’t really know how to use it, just using it on auto with the flash, and I didn’t really like the results I was getting with it. I wasn’t interested in taking photos of buildings, or nature, and so while I still took them of friends, eventually I got a little bored and so my DSLR went under the bed.

Fast forward a few years and Mads was born. For a while I still used my regular old compact digital camera as I was still in that period of time where you would go somewhere and then upload 112 photos to Facebook of your day out. (Does anyone else remember those days?!) But after a while I dusted off the thick layer of dust from my DSLR and got snapping.

For ages I snapped away on auto and then I started to get more into blogging and sharing photos, so I wanted to learn how to use my camera more. I started trying to teach myself how to shoot in manual and I think that’s when my love of photography really exploded. I loved sharing my photos on my blog, loved taking photos of the girls and loved the buzz of when I took a lovely photo. I was suppose it was a little bit of everything that made me love taking photos- the fact I had my blog, the fact that I genuinely love photography and the fact that of course I was recording so many moments of my childrens lives. It genuinely has become one of my biggest passions.

I dread to think how many photos I have taken over the years. I go through ‘phases’ with my big camera, sometimes I won’t get it out for a couple of weeks, preferring to use my iPhone, but on a holiday I may take up to 600 photos. Most of those I delete after we get home, I am quite ruthless with deleting them as you don’t need 20 photos of the same scene, but I just love that I am capturing so much of our family life. Of course, my camera isn’t out constantly, that wouldn’t be much fun at all, but usually I take a couple of photos at the start of whatever we are doing, a couple in the middle and a couple at the end, and that generally works for me. Every year I make huge photo books of our year as a keep sake, although I still haven’t made 2014- it’s a mammoth job and I just don’t have time at the moment, I really need to start making it.

I hope that when the girls are older, they will really appreciate having these moments recorded and I know when I am old and grey, I will love looking back at them all as well. I am so thankful to blogging for in part helping me capture these memories, of course I would have taken them anyway if I didn’t have my blog, but perhaps I wouldn’t have learnt to use my camera properly, or gone off to do certain things as a result, or perhaps take quite as many photos as I do now- and I am sure lots of other bloggers would agree with me.

I couldn’t possibly pick a favourite photo out of all I have taken, in fact I couldn’t probably even narrow it down to even twenty, but I thought I would set myself a little challenge to find fifteen photos that I really love- I wouldn’t say they are my favourites of all time, but they are pretty high up in the ones I love. I have a photography page on my blog where I put photos I love on that has more, but here are fifteen of my favourites from over the years…






hiring bikes4


a trip to scarborough8





stockholm 2015j



I love that my love of photography and of blogging has helped capture our most ordinary moments.


  • Donna says:

    I normally link up and then come back later, when I have more time, to comment but I couldn’t help but read your post today. I relate a lot to your uni self – taking photos on auto although I don’t use the flash – I’ve actually just invested in a ‘proper’ flash but need to learn how to use it. I don’t actually use auto anymore, mainly TV and AV mode – and I know that TV is better for light and moving things and AV is better for background blur BUT that’s about as far as it gets. My project for next year is to take some time to learn more about the science of photography as I love taking photos but I know they could be better. Love your collection of photos at the end! x

  • Your photography is such an inspiration for me. I too have my “big camera” and since I broke the camera on my phone I’ve definitely got into using it a lot more – it had become rather neglected since having my little man. I never seemed to have the time to edit and sort them.

    And I understand the need to capture the moments with Great Grandparents – thankfully my own maternal grandparents are still in good health, but both of my paternal grandparents passed away before little man was born. My husband has his maternal grandmother still, but she is in ill health – we’re actually off to see her today, and the plan is to take as many photos on the big camera as I can to decorate her room as her memory is fading.

    Photography has started to really mean something to me now, rather than just pressing the shutter and hoping for a nice picture. I’m desperately gathering memories for my son so we can discuss all the amazing people who were in his life when he was younger.

  • Beth says:

    Oh wow. Those photos are beautiful. I especially love the first photo. xx

  • Carie says:

    It must have been so hard to choose your favourites for this post, you take so many lovely photos! I remember having disposable cameras, I used to buy a handful for summer holidays and nights out and there was always great excitement getting the envelopes back in the post. Then I had a film camera which went everywhere with me until H and I bought a compact digital. But my big camera is my fourth baby – isn’t it great that blogging gives us an outlet and inspiration 🙂

  • You have such a talent Katie! I love looking at the pictures on your blog. When I started blogging, I didn’t realise how important it was to include at least one image with each post. I do now, but still only use my iPhone and hope to at some point hone my skills and get a better camera. My our fifteen favourites are stunners!! I feel a bit ashamed of my pics now!! X

  • Oh Katie, I’m nowhere near your level of photography skills but I completely understand what you’re saying. For me, it’s all about capturing the different shades of green where we live. I could take pictures of the countryside all day long. I probably wouldn’t have found that interest if I hadn’t started blogging. I find it hugely therapeutic, too. I still adore the picture of LL in the glasses. I smile every time I see it. It’s the height of cuteness.

  • Caro says:

    I’m another admirer of your photography – both your creativity and composition as well as the technical aspects. I find myself curious about the lens and settings choices and edit process for some of your shots! Your girls are such fantastic subjects too – sadly Thomas hates having his picture taken at the moment, which makes me sad (but I do have to respect too). I feel like I don’t get the opportunity to experiment in the ways I’d like to, as he would be my subject of choice.

    My biggest downfall with photographs is actually doing anything with them though. I really need to get on and get some more recent ones printed and framed, but it’s often such a big task!

  • Jenny says:

    Katie gorgeous captures and I think they have been over the years all my favorites too. I love your photography page and without sounding like a complete stalker and creep I wish I could take photos of my kids like you do yours. We are driving down for a family photoshoot with you someday as they are so beautiful to look back on when we are old and grey and the way you take them from all perspectives and angles is heart melting. Your little girls will appreciate it so much especially these you take over and over with your grandparents as they might not be able to remember all of those younger days and I think it’s amazing that your family calls it your big camera. My family here in the usa always asks me where’s the big one? lol If I don’t have it around my neck. I did the same I bought my camera and shot on auto so long and hated my photos. I still am never satisfied fully but there is such a great feeling when you captures the perfect memory or photo to share and I love that feeling it feels me with sunshine if that makes sense. What a lovely post, just finishing my link up now. (too funny I have a foot photo this week too) Great minds think alike. Miss you tons and tons. 🙂 Thanks for hosting beautiful. Great round up of faves although I do love your iphone little bits of life too!!!

  • LauraCYMFT says:

    Such gorgeous photos. I’ve always loved taking photographs. I was the girl who took a disposable camera to school at least twice a month. I miss getting photos developed but it is so much easier these days to share your photos with friends and family. x

  • Your photos always amaze me Katie you are so good at getting great shots, I have just got my first DSLR a couple of months ago so am still learning but I love it. There’s nothing better when you’ve had a fun day to look back through the photos is there! x

  • Mary says:

    Katie I absolutely love all of the photos you take – big camera or not haha theyre just so vibrant and clear and say so much. I love that one with your grandparents, how much in the way of picture taking must have changed in their life time. I love to see my kids with their great granddad too, its such a special moment and like you say one that wont be here for a huge part of their life.

    Id love to invest in a “big camera” too, ive not really had an interest in photography until I started blogging and now I just want to capture all of these memories and moments. I love to take pictures too and its only luck that some actually look good haha

    Im in Leeds – did you study here? its a fab city isnt it? x

  • I can relate hugely to this. I am always the one to take photos and always have been, though have never owned a really decent camera. B moans all the time that the camera is out for everything-even more so since I’ve been blogging and I really do want to capture the moment. Your photos are an inspiration-they always look fantastic and I can’t wait to see another fb or Instagram post to see what you’ve captured next. x

  • Kerri-Ann says:

    Absolutely stunning pictures, these are definitely some of my favourites of yours too. I found myself nodding! I love this post. Although I don’t yet have a big camera I too have this relationship with my iPhone and my family and friends often joke about it. Yet they love all the memories! x

  • ann Winters says:

    These are amazing captures! You are a great photographer, I love your images which always inspire me 🙂
    It is great to keep these moments forever stored. I usually browse my old photographs and always remember some sweet moment that otherwise might be forgotten. x

  • I am always blown away by the colour in your photographs and how you make them look so effortless. I love your family pictures – and how beautiful to have them for the years to come. I love taking snaps and am getting into it more – but find the technical elements so hard! I’m a point and shoot kind of girl! Such a lovely post xx

  • Katie, you always take such beautiful photos. You are my inspiration for getting better at taking them – I rely too much on my trusty iPhone and for too long have been too scared to properly figure out my DSLR!

    Ooh and yes, I remember the days of uploading 122 photos to Facebook, and shamefully never editing them. There are some HORRIFIC ones of me still from University… xxx

  • Notmyyearoff says:

    They are some very fantastic photos and I was reading it wondering what my favourite pics are on your blog having read it for so many years. I love the one in the rapeseed field where Mads is being chucked into the air and I think all the ones where Mads is reaching out for someones ear as her comfort thing 🙂

  • Ali says:

    I absolutely love your photos – I think you are an amazing photographer and you amongst others inspired me to invest in my first DSLR. Now I just need to teach myself how to do it in manual mode! I don’t think I’ll ever be as good as you though – you have a natural talent and flair x

  • SJ says:

    Katie your photos are just gorgeous! Can I ask what kind of DSLR/lens you use? I usually use a 50mm 1.4 but am thinking of upgrading soon 🙂

  • I loved reading this Katie and I could easily have written some of it myself! I have always been ‘the one’ taking photos too and my old nickname was Paparazzi Pardoe (my maiden name) because I was always snapping away and things haven’t changed much though the kids are what I take photos of more than anything else now. Your photos are amazing though and you really do have a talent for photography! Xx

  • Hi Katie,
    I am in exactly the same position! I love my ‘big camera’ but I sometimes feel I don’t know how to use it properly, so I tend to take photos on my phone when out and about because I can snap a moment more easily without fiddling with the settings. I’d love to know more though! Are you self-taught? What resources did you use?

  • Mummy Fever says:

    Amazing pics – love the lavender shot 🙂

  • Kate✚ says:

    Oh Katie, your photos are so beautiful. You have such a gift and capture a moment so beautifully. I love photography too, but have so much to learn. I’m still a bit of an ‘auto’ girl really… but I’m getting better x

  • Alex Bump to Baby says:

    The photos that you take are my absolute favourite. There’s never ever been a blog post that I’ve clicked on to read of yours where your photography hasn’t quite literally blown me away! I wish you could teach me!

    Oh and that photo of your Grandparents is just absolutely lovely Katie! xx

  • I love that I can look through these photos and remember them and what you have written about them, that first one of Mads is still fantastic! I’ve started making photobooks of our year too and the twins have become fascinated with them. I hope one day to have the time and money to do more with photography, I take so many photos ALL the time! I have all our old family photographs in my house in the hopes of doing more with them one day. These photos are especially sweet with your Grandparents, lovely to see the youngest with the oldest! xx

    • Katie Ellison says:

      Thanks lovely, I think those photo books are such a lovely way of looking back on things. And your photos are just lovely too, the most important thing is the memories.x

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