articulating ourselves...

This is my first post where I'm expressing my opinion and I am actually pondering a) whether to write it and b) what's going to come out as I type but I have a fire feeling in my belly which means I have to let it out... so lets see what happens...
Over the past few weeks I have been told about or witnessed quite a bit of negativity regarding my photographs. I really want to stress at this point that this post isn't about how hurt I was or how much it has dented my confidence as actually I've surprised myself with how much it hasn't effected me in this way. The real issue is the subject of art... both in photography and politeness.
When I was looking for a wedding photographer for myself I couldn't find the kind of photography that was in my head so I decided to take the kind of photos I liked, nothing to do with anyone else... it was my art. It just so happened that a few other people had the same sort of thing in their heads too... hence my little photography business started.
For me, photography is about feeling. I absolutely adore with all my heart capturing the emotion and the feeling of a moment and to have the freedom of creativity. Actually the more I'm learning about the scientific side of photography (the technical side) the more I'm able to play with the creative side (getting a good sunflare took a bit of practice!) so I feel that I'm in a good place. I'd hate to have the technical side down but not be able to stop 'thinking' and start 'feeling'.
But I also have to accept that art goes hand in hand with opinion and not everyone will like or get what you do as an artist.... I actually felt quite empowered that people had taken the time to voice their opinion and that I didn't crumble over it. In fact I felt confident in my own art... I think it's easy to feel confident when you receive a lot of positive feedback but it can be very different when it's negative... I felt quite proud of my own acceptance.
I personally have styles of photography that I like and some that really isn't my cup of tea but I don't feel the need to comment on how much I dislike it... I simply move on to the next website or blog and look at things I like... same with anything... films, music, books.. I just don't feel the need to get angry at things that are different. But there seems to be a small minority that are somehow threatened by something different... but there is room for all of us, all of our styles and we should embrace our differences... it would be pretty dull if we were all the same!
The one other thing I do want to mention is the effect that a negative comment on someone's wedding pictures can have. Those photographs are a reminder of their wonderful, emotional, beautiful and most precious day so to comment negatively and publicly can't be very nice for the couple to see... I think sometimes we forget that these are real people that we're photographing...
So what is this post really about?.... I'm not really sure... maybe about following your heart, being more open and accepting, being true to what you believe in, listening to your own inspiration or simply just Emma having a rant.... whatever it is it feels good :)

I thought I better balance this post with a photo so here's me and my boy in a lift in France.


  1. not ranty at all. very well said. i hate when people feel the need to make themselves feel better by slagging others off. your photographs are unique, incredible and beautiful and of course there will always be a small minority of people who dont 'get' that but screw them.

    As i always say, being a 'niche' you will never be as popular or always liked by everyone but thats great imho. you'll get the clients you want who love what you do and who you are. screw the rest of them.

  2. fabulous photo and well written post. yay you - keep doing what you doing, its awesome!

  3. Fair point. Wedding photography has to be about personal taste and emotional response. I see selective colour and I want to shriek, but I don't go a-hunting down people who do it - their clients will go to them because they like that - and more power to them.
    I think sometimes people forget that there are real individuals putting themselves out there in these images. Politeness really does cost nothing!

  4. Quoting "following your heart, being more open and accepting, being true to what you believe in, listening to your own inspiration" ---- and i say loudly AMEN to you Emma!!!! and in my world, you always ROCK! xoxo

  5. I can't even wrap my head around the fact that anyone would have anything negative to say about your work...let alone saying it publicly. Your work is absolutely incredible, and very obviously from your heart - which is what truly matters in creating art. And yes, for those naysayers out there - wedding photography IS art. Well said, thanks for putting this out in the world...

  6. well said... both on people commenting on your photos and putting a dampener on someone's wedding memories. bad form I say – especially as your photos are superb!

  7. oh emma. i don't know what comments you're talking about...but whoever posted them, they are KA-RAZY! your work is wonderful and always pushes me to take my work to the next level.

    i've found the beauty of this style of photography is there are so many options of "good", even if people don't always "get it". it's opened a whole new world for me. i was kinda hurt the first time my mom said "but you messed the pic up shannon". lol it was a good lesson in realizing not everyone is going to like my style, but as long as me and my clients do, that's all that really truly matters.

    keep snapping emma...i love coming back now and again and seeing what new stuff you have posted. :)

  8. I don't understand, I really don't... Every time I see a new post from you I think just how much you were in 'the moment' completely, what more could anyone want from a photographer. I struggled to find a photographer for my wedding and still don't think I managed to find the right one, then I found you all be it too late! You share the same passion for details, love and happiness that I and ALOT of people do. Yes you have to take into account personal taste but that's why there are so many photographers out there to chose from! I'm really shocked to hear that someone would publicly write negative comments, what were they trying to achieve? I can only assume that jealously is at the root of it all and who wouldn't be jealous of your talent! You have a raw gift for artistic and emotional photography brought to life by real everyday like-minded people as yourself!

    Keep articulating Emma...the world is a better place for it :)

  9. VERY well said Emma, my photography style is very different from yours, although I do also love your style, it is not even about that its about having respect for others work, others wedding images etc some people like Andy Wahol, others don't its as simple as that. There is no need to make negative comments. So many people take things to seriously and I would imagine that it is just jelousy that you are sucessful doing what you love when soooo many people are stuck behind a desk only dreaming about it. I think the same when someone decides not to book me for their wedding pics for whatever reason, its not personal its just that people like different things! Glad you kept your chin up! x

  10. Very well said Emma, I have never understood why people find the need and take the time to comment negatively on something that just isn't their cup of tea. The whole notion is very strange to me.

    I'm not going to use this particular comment box as a place to tell you how much I love your work because I don't think you're asking to hear that here....

    But I'm sure I will on your next post!!

  11. Emma, your style and photographs are absolutely wonderful, and you have admirers all over the world (my friend and I here in Sacramento, California included). The fact that some people feel the need to spread their negativity about an artform has always baffled me, and when clients are involved, I'd just have to call that poor taste. For lack of a better phrase, "they're just haters!!" There are a lot of highly regarded and sucessful professionals in the business whose style doesn't appeal to me in the least, regardless of how technically well done their work is or how popular they may be. Have we all forgotten that photography is a subjective art form?

  12. Emma, you're amazing and your style is awesome. Be proud of what you do and how you do it :D Thanks for sharing your thoughts. We know how much negative comments hurt and they come in all shapes and strange means, but positive comments are some of the most uplifting and incredible things and I really believe that we need more of these in the world in general!
    Style is such a personal thing and such a heart felt thing and I hope you know that your style is appreciated and loved and that you shouldn't change because you are truly awesome and so talented at what YOU do!
    Good on you for being able to share this.Always love seeing your work and cant wait to see more of it...Anyhow..Im glad we are all so different, the world would be a boring place if we all had the same ideas! x x Big photo-taking love :D Charis

  13. "Here Here" or "Hear Hear" or whatever it is you say in court. Generally speaking Emma darling, it's those who are jealous or insecure in their own ability that would feel the need to criticise. I love your originality and think you are awesome. Really, truly awesome.

  14. Posting negative comments on your business website is simply rude. There's no need. I'd imagine Emma, its a response to your big success in the business in such a short time. Some people will always be jealous when others are doing better they are.

    Keep up the good work!

  15. I don't think I need to comment on the beauty of your work and how it comes from an instinctual, artful and heartfelt place but I guess I just did...haha... I always kind of felt like if people react negatively then you're doing something right, it's means you're effecting people! If someone actually takes the time to say something negative then you did something that engaged them enough to put the energy into commenting in the first place. I may not be saying this so much to you as you seem to have handled the negativity quite well, maybe I'm just reminding myself. Like said above, negativity comes from a place of fear, either fearful of their ideas of beauty being challenged, feeling denied some attention or fearful of a changing market that could take business away. I notice this a lot with old school wedding photographers, things are changing and they are scared and I read a lot of lashing out. But art has no specific form, it is personal and subjective and there really is no reason to be negative about it unless a person is out asking for a harsh critique but even then it's just stepping stones to finding some sort of personal path. I agree about negative comments on people's wedding photographs too, it's really not the appropriate time to be giving a critical evaluation of someone's work, it's about the love shared between these people and that captured love deserves respect. Sorry, I went on a bit...

  16. Crikey. Having an opinion on an individual's art is one thing, but being miserable/bitter/insecure/jealous and downright rude enough to share unconstructive negative feelings about what is unarguably (though I do admit I'm (a) biased and (b) biased) a gorgeous blog full of beautiful, personal photographs of lovely people celebrating the most important day of their lives WHATEVER one's preferences of style might be *gasps for breath* is quite another. Seriously, what is the point? Mega big up to you for giving them what for, Miss Case. As Dr Dietz would say... don't even ignore them :) xxx

  17. Again, as others have said, I don't really understand why anyone would voice negative opinions about your photography-I happen to find it very natural, beautiful, creative and most importantly from the heart which is certainly what any bride and groom I work with are looking for. I'm also a strong believer that there is work out there for everyone, not everyone wants the same thing and everyone has their own unique way of doing it-that's what working in this industry is all about. There's no blueprint, you make your own way. Keep doing it!

  18. Good work Ms Case. Very well put. It wasn't ranty at all and even if it was it doesn't matter because it's YOUR blog, so you can do whatever the heck you like with it. Ditto your photos. Ditto your business.

    And there's one or two people out there who quite like what you do with all those things, so keep on persevering and being uniquely strong as only you can.

  19. Emma,
    Good for you darling that you have the spirit not to take the disliker's too seriously. I believe that if these people have time to write their (usually badly spelled, hastily written, stinging comments) then they perhaps need to (a) go away and evaluate how they spend their time, and (b) learn how to be able to critically evaluate the work of others without the need to provide unnecessarily rude/harmful/offensive feedback.

    These commentators are probably (possibly without even realising it) jealous of your success, or maybe feeling threatening in some small way, because their own photography hasn't received the same critical acclaim, attention or love from wedding blogs and the other outlets in which you promote your work. Either way, their leaving such comments on wedding blogs is highly inappropriate (as you say - what about the poor Bride & Groom?!?) and for them not to realise that is a huge professional misjudgement.

    There will always be that kind around my love - trick is to continue to rise about the unnecessary remarks and keep on believing in YOU, your brand, and the incredible service and style that you have worked hard to be able to offer.
    As the old saying goes, if you haven't got anything 'nice' to say, why say anything at all?
    You are an amazingly talented photographer - keep on doing what you do best...
    And if it means zilch, I think you're one of the fabbest UK Photographers out there - you have your own signature style and a beautiful personality and together, that brings a little bit of happiness and inspiration and love into the lives of many! As for the ones for whom it doesn't - well, who cares, really?
    I would feel very honoured indeed to be able to feature more of your fabulous photography on my blog in the future :)
    Much love,
    Annabel xXx

  20. Well said Emma. Just keep doing what you do...

  21. I have been sitting here trying to think of a nice, balanced comment about opinions, but I start to type it and all I want to say is that anyone who doesn't like your photos is an absolute div who should just be quiet!

  22. Well said, my friend.

    Unfortunately people really abuse the anonymity that the internet provides. And I agree with everyone who said that this is a consequence of your success... haters to the left, as Beyonce might say!


  23. I think and I know that your photographs are beautiful. It's an art to take pictures and yours truly inspires me ♥
    And like what you said..."but there is room for all of us, all of our styles and we should embrace our differences... it would be pretty dull if we were all the same!"... I definitely agree, it would be pretty dull if we were all the same...and the world is big enough for everyone to do their own.

  24. Hi Emma - Wow! When I found your website, it linked me into a whole bunch of other kindred spirits in the feild of photography - who were capturing photos with all of their hearts. Your work and the other photographers I have come into contact with through your site have made me feel empowered and strong and reaffirmed in my belief that photography is best when its from your heart. I found this really amazing article not long ago that I think you might enjoy:


    Not that I think you are lacking in confidence - but that it speaks alot of truths about the photography arena.

    You are AMAZING and a massive inspiration. Art is and always should be subjective - it is like any other medium - so heres hoping it stays that way and we arent all forced into a little box with a formula.

    Keep up all your wonderful ways.
    Love Rach

  25. i love your photos.. i'm even a little in love with you - in non creepy way..

    i read through your blog when I first came on hear.. learning how you self taught yourself, read and learn more.. hugely inspiring and something i'm trying to do more of.

    never understand negativity.. surely we're all different and like somethings and dislike others.. why be negative just move on.

  26. hear hear! I hope I can react in such a level headed way next time I read something upsetting about my work. This post is an inspiration to at least try...x

  27. Like you say, if you don't like what I do, move on. I love what you do and have stayed. Love your work, love you attitude, hate rudeness with a passion. I really enjoy your blog, your beautiful images and I'm always struck by the exquisite moments you capture.

    There is a time and a place for constructive criticism, we all learn and grow from that. I'm just glad to hear that some ill-thought comments haven't dampened your spirit. It is lovely to think of all those blissful couples who will treasure their photographs because you are there to capture it.

    The wide old web can bring a whole barrel of bad things, but Emma dear, it also brought me you and your work.

  28. Well, Em - you said it. It's all to do with not only following your heart but believing in it. I still haven't got remotely anywhere near as much support as you - but I shall persevere with my singing and writing until I get the recognition I deserve, Even if it's when I'm 60. We have to experience the bad stuff to be as appreciate the good, and to be as brilliant as we are. Because it makes you want to stand proud and show them otherwise. We all love your work and I think you capture emotion with a great passion. There will be many artists who do what they do without it - it may be good, but I'm not going to believe it if there's no passion there. Which is why I believe you and your art. You're a true talent. Keep it up. xxx

  29. I am so sorry that someone has been rude about your photographs! I don't consider you to be a niche photographer at all - you have a beautiful style that is accessible to anyone, whatever their personal style.

    This happened to a podcaster friend of mine recently, and the words we told him apply to you 100% - take the number of comments here today as evidence of how appreciated your work is, and that person's negativity as a sign that you have hit the big time.


  30. Someone made a NEGATIVE comment about YOUR work?! Were they vision impaired?!!

  31. I don't understand the point in posting negative comments on peoples blogs. It has no benefit to anyone. The only thing I can think is that there person is jealous of the talent dispalyed on this blog.
    How anyone can be negative about the photos you have posted is beyond me. I am always overwhelmed by emotion when i look at your photo's. There is so much love, joy and personality in your images that I only hope can be captured at my own wedding.
    As long as you are happy with the images and the couple you photograph love them, who cares what other people think.
    You have an ever growing client list and fanbase that are a testiment to your talent and passion for photography.

    You rock...keep doing what you are doing!

  32. Without some negative critique you cannot grow. Indeed you will always be learning yet for one so new to the business I think you are marvellous and handling your fears and worries rather well.

  33. Emma just trawl around the internet and you'll find people who spend their time making negative comments and picking fights - I'm sure they've nothing better to do with their sad little lives. They're the ones with the problem - not you and your amazing photographs! Like everyone who has commented here I love your style and have also been inspired by your pictures. keep up the great work girl and "Nil bastardo carborundum" !!


  34. Morning Emma.

    We're having some photos taken with you in a couple of weeks, as a family and in all honesty, your site was the only one I found which epitomised the photographic style I was looking for.

    I can't really add a different view on all the comments you've received on this post so far, I agree with most of them, especially that without criticism we can't grow. However, its the way in which these comments are communicated. If people really want to help, genuinely, they will deliver their comments with dignity and compassion. For those who don't want to help, those people who are sadly bitter and jealous, they won't care how they hurt other people, as they're attempting to transfer their hurt onto someone else.
    Armchair critics are a measly portion of society, they're the one who phone into the Jeremy Vine show and rant about issues they can't change, they're the ones who write into Points of View. No one listens to them in their world, so they force it on others who won't have a choice but to listen.

    Anyway, I'm sure you get what I mean. Regardless of the negative comments you've received, it doesn't change anything in my mind. Your photography is unique. And thats because it comes from your soul and I really look forward to meeting you in two weeks for you to capture our souls in our family photographs.

  35. There is not much more I can add to the comments above as they all express exactly how I feel about this. The only thing I can add is that I have shown your pictures to lots of friends and family and they all love what you do (so much so that many of them regularly check your blog out now themselves).

    It is so special for a couple to have images of their wedding day that are not only images, they are bespoke pieces of art. If I ever have a big event in my future (not only weddings but family shots, portraits, work, etc), you will be the first photographer I approach. Best of luck to you honey and I hope your success snowballs even more!

  36. hi Emma,
    love your work, one of the best i think in vintage style :O)
    the moments you capture and the framing is really cool also. must have been some miserable old git who did'nt like what you were doing! makes me smile now when i receive negativity from people like that as i would be more offended if they did like it because they probably just want a nice dollop of blandness and a side dish of same old same old!!
    keep doing your thing - its great ;O)


  37. Hi Emma
    I would have to i find your style of photography fresh and inspiring to me as a learning photographer.The world if full of these people that have nothing better to do but to bring successful and talented people down.
    All i have to say is keep up the fantastic work and keep inspiring people like myself.