It's with great pleasure that we can say that de la Mare Creative is featured in this month's edition of Cumbria Life alongside the wonderful Liz Newport from Buzy Lizzie Garden Design as well as coverage on In-Cumbria, Cumbria Crack and the Cumberland and Westmorland Gazette. It's been one of the highlights of the year to work with Liz to capture a few of her gardens. I can't recommend her work enough - do contact her to have her work her magic on your outdoor space! You can read the full article below, written by Sally Seed, and if you are interested in recording the seasons of your garden, please do get in touch.
A shared love of gardens is picture perfect
When garden designer, Liz Newport, and photographer, Rachael de la Mare, met at a Dacre yoga class, they didn’t expect to have gardens in common. Today, Liz is supporting Rachael in a new business venture to capture and record the glory of Cumbrian gardens through the seasons.
Liz, who trades as Buzy Lizzie Garden Design, loves the challenge of creating planting schemes and gardens that look good throughout the year. Rachael, who recently worked with Penrith Town Council and the Penrith in Bloom team on a celebratory film, has always enjoyed capturing the personality and life of plants and gardens on camera. Together, they’ve developing Rachael’s concept of creating very special photographic keepsake journals of clients’ gardens.
Rachael, who is originally from Guernsey but now lives near Penrith, has been a professional photographer for over 15 years. “I love to capture stories in my images and gardens have that element of narrative and continual change. They’re also very personal to the gardeners who’ve worked so hard to create them and there are often special memories, particular plants and other nostalgic elements that give the garden character. I want to preserve those memories and moments and reflect the life and personality of the gardeners and their gardens in a way that can be kept and shared. A book is ideal but I’m also aware that some people may prefer a keepsake box of prints or a framed selection instead.”
To make the concept a reality, Rachael was looking for gardens that she could photograph and capture in this way. She wanted to test and hone her ideas and get feedback from the owners and gardeners before launching the idea as a commercial option.
“That’s where I could help,” says Liz, “as I’ve designed and developed over 500 gardens in and around Cumbria during my 15 years in business in a variety of styles, each one fitting a particular client’s brief and the specific location. I was pretty sure that some of my clients would be happy to let Rachael and her camera in through the coming year to capture the different seasons. So far, the response has been really encouraging and it’s definitely looking like something that could develop into a new strand of work for Rachael.”
The pilot project for the new venture covers five different Buzy Lizzie gardens, including a couple at Manor Park in Penrith. “I’m thoroughly enjoying visiting the gardens,” says Rachael, “and I can see that, over the course of a year, I’ll get to know the owners and their gardens really well and learn a lot about how this idea could work out. I am sure there are proud gardeners out there who will see the value and appreciate the pleasure of having a photographic record of their garden through the seasons. I’m already getting interest in commissions to do this sort of work elsewhere so working with Liz to fine tune the ideas has been invaluable.”
Liz is also very conscious of the challenge to design a garden that has something special to enjoy right through the year: “Spring bulbs and June flowering are quite easy but having the evergreen structure in place for the winter frosts and planting for the late summer into the autumn need careful thought. Seeing Rachael capture one of my gardens on camera is giving me new ideas too!”
“For instance, later flowering clematis species are worth including on any trellis or pergola so that there’s flowering later in the year once the roses and honeysuckle are fading,” she says, “and I also love the daisy family (Asteraceae). Rudbeckia, Echinacea and others are at their best in the autumn and bring vivid colour to a garden at this time of year.”
A shared love of gardens and mutual support is definitely creating a flowering business relationship.
For further information about both businesses, please see www.buzylizzie.co.uk and www.delamare-creative.co.uk
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Just before lockdown kicked in, I started filming for this year's Penrith in Bloom film with some spring flowers in the St Andrew's church yard and a seed swap - 'Seedy Saturday' - at the Salvation Army. Very quickly it became clear that life had to change and the filming stopped. To the wonderful credit of the Community Gardeners in Penrith, with the support of the Penrith Town Council, the food production and greening in Penrith continued safely within the restrictions. In the face of a pandemic, the teams worked together to bring smiles to faces, supply fresh produce to those who need it and provide community and pride in Penrith. As Louise says so beautifully in the film, people have appreciated. It's been one of the great joys of 2020 to record their activities - planting is a hopeful act, much needed this year.
Congratulations to the teams who have been recognised by Britain in Bloom and Cumbria in Bloom with awards and certificates for their fantastic work this year. You can see the film here:
It goes without saying that 2020 has been an unusual year. It’s also been a time of change here as, after 15 years, I’ve gone full-time as a photographer and creative. For many years, I’ve had the pleasure of working for a few days each as a graphic designer for Ullswater Community College and have counted celebrating the students of that school as one of the joys of my life. As 2020 began, it felt right to transition my role out and give my time fully to my business after eleven years at UCC. From this summer we’ve had a name change, from de la Mare Photography to de la Mare Creative, and whilst this isn’t necessarily the easiest year to do it in, I’m excited for the changes and opportunities ahead!
Over the next few months there will be updates on our website and social media pages - we have exciting new collaborations happening, some seasonal shoots and a new photographic venture coming too. So follow us and come along for the ride!
You can find us on facebook: www.facebook.com/delamarecreative and on Instagram @delamarecreative
For many years, March meant my annual visit to Eden Boutique at Newton Rigg for a fantastic couple of days shooting the end of year Creative image work from the hairdressers and beauty therapists there. Sadly, due to Coronavirus, this year's shoot had to be cancelled so here's a couple of my favourites from the class of 2019 instead!
A year ago today... Unscripted, a novel by Claire Handscombe, had it's book launch. We had the privilege of giving the book it's own little shoot ahead of the launch. A good book recommendation can go a long way in times like these and if you are looking for a little bit of romance, optimism and escapism then check it out.
A couple of months ago I had the great pleasure of shooting with the Lost Art Theatre Company. The play, Number 8, is based around the life of the Carlisle-born suffragette Maud Mary Brindley. What a performance it was! The subject matter was stirring and, putting the particulars of the politics aside, the story of human endurance and singularity of purpose was interesting in the light of the current climate on freedom, and on freedom fighters. It was wonderful to work with director Jane Reardon again and alongside Jordan Summers from 1Five Events for the performance at the Old Fire Station in Carlisle. If you missed the performances in August, Number 8 will be making a return at the Borderlines Festival in October.
Day 1- rule of thirds
Today my photography challenge was rule of thirds. The first picture is of a door and i took this to experiment on rule of thirds on a angle.
The second picture is of the same door but of the frame and wall, i used rule of thirds by using three different texture types/patterns
The third picture is of a tree trunk, i took this as i thought the trunk would create a nice parallel through the image to create the middle third and i also thought the pattern looked like an eye.
The last image i attempted to use rule of thirds in both directions (horizontal and vertical) in order to draw attention to the focal point/ the cat.
Visuals and updates from de la Mare Creative