Wow, has this week flown or what? I had such plans for this week and was hoping to get everything on my to-do list ticked off while the kids were at school and pre-school but turns out I am a little bit over optimistic on the time front! I think that stuff will take me 10 minutes and it ends up being an hour…story of my life…

We’ve got a nice quiet weekend planned, there’s a few fun things happening in and around our village over the weekend that we’re going to check out and I’m off shooting a couple of family sessions too which I love. The last couple of afternoons have had the prettiest light (geek).

If you take part in the Living Arrows project, you may have spotted a couple of new faces in the line up…I was chatting to people when we met up in the summer holidays and decided that I really wanted to feature some new faces so the line up will change each month. Donna is one of the mums taking part this month so I’ve asked her to share a few favourite photos and talk photography.

How would you describe your style and what advice can you offer on finding your personal style or aesthetic?

I think I am still finding my own style really so don’t have a consistent style when I take photographs but I am always trying to learn more about photography and the kind of pictures I like to take so the best advice I can give is to learn what photos you like from other people and adapt it to suit the way shoot.

What subjects interest you the most? 

The children mainly. Or kids in general. I love watching children play, watching how they use their imaginations and the huge range of facial expressions they have.


What’s your favourite season for taking photos and why?

I love spring. Taking photos in winter is harder as there’s less natural light and the days are shorter so the longer days of spring and the days being generally brighter is such a gift after the winter months and something I really appreciate.

When it comes to taking photos, do you have more of a staged set-up or to be spontaneous?

I don’t really ever stage photos unless I’m trying to take a photo of all four of us. The most I’ll ever do is move clutter out of a shot if we’re at home or get the children to play somewhere with better light. Out and about I’ll occasionally get them to sit somewhere that looks pretty but other than that all my photos are spontaneous.


If you could only use one lens forever, what would you choose?

I only have 2 lenses, my kit lens and a 50mm. For me, the 50mm gives that loves background blur that I love but my camera body isn’t good enough to really do it justice as you have to stand quite far back to take the photos. When I upgrade my camera I’m sure the ‘nifty fifty’ will be the lens for me but until then I stick with the kit lens in most situations and work with it the best I can.


What do you use for editing and what do you like about it?

I think with this I am definitely in the minority. I don’t edit photos really. I crop them if needed but apart from that I don’t do anything else. I’ve always believed in the honesty of unedited photos and I like the photos I take to be a clear reflection of the moments I have captured so I keep them as they are, straight from the camera.

Is there anything you struggle with photography wise?

I forget to change perspective sometimes. You can get such different photos by getting down lower, standing on something or changing the angle and I often just forget to move!

Do you have any bad photography habits?

I’m not sure what would be classed as a bad habit. I still don’t shoot fully in manual and a times I take a hundred photos just for one that I’ll use. I also never keep my camera in a camera bag, forget to put the lens cap back on and generally should look after it better!


Donna’s Blog | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

  • Donna - Thanks so much for having me! Such a honour to be part of the Living Arrows featured contributors xReplyCancel

With the kids back at school & preschool and with so much free time now (12 hours a week – GET IN!), my attention has turned to the beautification of my house and first up is the kitchen. According to my Pinterest, the style I seem to be favouring at the moment  is “modern vintage” and if you’ve ever met me, you’ll know that label is me to a tee. At one time I turned my nose up at things that weren’t *authentically* vintage but as I’ve grown older and more practically minded, I’ve seen the benefit (let’s not mention all the light coloured walls with two messy children….). I’d really love an eclectic mix of eras and colour, you enter our house via the kitchen and so I’d like it to be a really bright and happy room. Mismatching is my current love de jour and along with anything I can sand and chalk paint, I am always on the lookout for gorgeous tableware, I can’t pass a charity shop without popping in to see what they have in the way of plates! When it comes to glasses, I’m all about a goblet. Yes, even for Prosecco. Come to think of it, perhaps my goblet love means my friends and I am partly responsible for the current Prosecco shortage?

House of Fraser have the most fabulous vintage inspired collection of wine glasses at the moment and I’m a huge fan of the multi-coloured sets. Perfect for a mismatched table! I also love a lot of their 50s style homeware. Such a glamourous era.

Vintage look - 1950s inspired


If you’re over on Pinterest, you might like to follow along to see the latest kitchen makeover plans!

Follow Hayley’s board Kitchen on Pinterest.

*This post is in collaboration with House of Fraser

  • Vickie - I love the Modern Vintage look too and some of those pieces are definitely calling to me. I especially like the set of 3 Le Creuset dishes in pale pink!ReplyCancel

Donna Living Arrows

Donna | What the Redhead said


Hayley | Shutterflies


Lauren | Real Housewife of Suffolk County

Natalie Living Arrows

Natalie | Little Jam Pot Life

Living Arrows Goblin ChildAmber | The Goblin Child

* * * * *

Today’s the 5th time I’ve done this, the start of another school year and it’s as bittersweet as ever. They say the days are long and the years are short, wow is that true! I can’t believe how quickly September has come around again. It sort of makes me anxious, the realisation that time is passing so quickly. One year of lower school left, I almost can’t bear it!


Living Arrows
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  • Carie - Oh wow, I can’t imagine being on the fifth time round, I’m still just about coping with having done the very first one!ReplyCancel

  • Charlotte - We start school next year and already I’m dreading it a bit! Good luck with this new term. X
    Love the light in Amber’s shot, love the mess in Natalie’s and I love all the selfies!ReplyCancel

  • Kerri-Ann - Aww what a cute photo, and wow 5th time round, first for us tomorrow! #livingarrows xReplyCancel

  • Donna - Thanks so much for hosting and featuring us again! B looks so grown up! xReplyCancel

  • Nikki Thomas - That first photo is a familiar sight in this house. Loving the cuddles with mum shot that is gorgeousReplyCancel

  • Amy @ Very Much So... - Thanks for hosting. What a lovely selection of pictures as usual. Wow, 5th time. At the moment the idea of my daughter going off to school seems so far away but I know that it will be here before I know it!ReplyCancel

  • Polka Dot Family - I love Natalie’s photo, there is something cute about seeing a little one covered in mudReplyCancel