People

B&W studio portraiture

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Studio portrait in B&W
Black and white studio photography by Bennetto Photography

I had a fabulous time photographing JP recently. He wasn’t expecting such an elaborate studio lighting setup nor the large number of shots taken but the end results were well worth it.

He really embraced the session bringing with him a change of clothes and props to help us get the range of shots we wanted. It was a thoroughly enjoyable photoshoot with a genuinely nice guy (I am showing my age now). The most difficult things to photograph are often when subjects have the same tonal ranges so getting the lighting right was key with this shot.

Events

Cliveden Literary Festival

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Cliveden Literary Festival

I photographed the inaugural Cliveden Literary Festival at the weekend for the fabulous ITM AV

Cliveden is the magnificent English country house (now a five star hotel) with its unique and extraordinary 350 year history of politics and intrigue, aristocracy and espionage, sex and scandal. The literary festival evoked the spirit of the great writers who have stayed there.

I photographed the house and gardens, the Clock Tower Marquee (which hosted ‘Living in the Age of Pussy – Where funny meets fury: the comic novelist on his savage Trump satire’ where John Preston talked to Howard Jacobson) and in the Great Hall (which hosted ‘Behind the scenes at our museums: how the treasures of the past and present shape our future’. Chair: Simon Jenkins Panellists: Nicholas Cullinan, Yana Peel and Hannah Rothschild).

Education

Welcome to the University of Reading

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Welcome Week 2017

Welcome Week 2017 at the University of Reading was colourful, vibrant, exciting, diverse, hectic and highly entertaining. There were far too many activities to put into one post: Volunteering Fayre, Academic Success Fair, RUSU Societies & Media Fayre, Chaplaincy BBQ, study advice sessions, campus tours and loads more. Everyone was getting to know the campus, their halls, the services on offer, the academics and of course, meeting new friends and experiencing University life.

Welcome Week has always been been highly entertaining to photograph so here is a dancing lion with the Reading Knights cheerleaders – nothing more to say!

Objects

Teddy bears and more

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I’ve just completed an exciting project photographing old and antique objects in the studio.  They included an original 1930’s wooden Mickey Mouse, a three owls brooch, a lead bear, scent bottles, porcelain figurines and a teddy bear named Dill.

It was intricate and painstaking getting the right lighting, reflections, shadows, highlights on each item so tiny changes made massive differences in the results. However, I ended up with a brilliant set of images (if I do say so myself). You know you’ve been working too much on your own when you start talking to a teddy bear – don’t worry, Dill has been returned to his owner safely and I have returned to talking to myself!

Education

Colourful close-ups: The Ridgeline Trust garden

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Sunflower in The Ridgeline Trust Garden, Reading

Based in Reading, The Ridgeline Trust provides horticultural therapy for people with experience of learning, mental or physical disabilities, whether temporary or permanent, and for others with particular needs. I spend a couple of very enjoyable afternoons photographing them at work. Here are some colourful closeups taken this week.

For more information on The Ridgeline Trust, visit their website: The Ridgeline Trust

And, in case you are interested, their harvest fete is on Sunday 17 September 2017 between 1pm and 4pm. There will be: produce and plants, homemade cakes, tombola, second-hand books, studio pottery seconds, kids’ games and activities, BBQ and refreshments, pumpkins and more…

Education

Graduation celebrations!

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Reading School of Pharmacy Graduation 2017

Congratulations to everyone from the University of Reading who graduated this week. I photographed the Reading School of Pharmacy and Food & Nutritional Sciences graduation receptions. It was good to be back in the familiar surroundings of the MERL gardens offering the perfect setting to celebrate graduation with family, friends and faculty staff. Also great for group photographs – especially if the photographer is leaning out a first floor window shouting instructions!

Architecture

St Giles’ Church, Reading: images and insights

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St Giles' Church Reading

I had such a lovely time photographing St Giles’ Church, Reading. I’ve had access to areas and artefacts never photographed before: inside the church steeple, the clock workings and above the bells to name a few. It’s been a real insight into a truly remarkable building, it’s people and it’s history.

St Giles’ was one of the three original parish churches, along with St Mary’s and St Laurence’s serving the medieval borough of Reading. Original parts of the church date back to the 12th century: Richard I (Richard the Lionheart) was the reigning monarch at the time. In 1539, John Eynon, the then priest of St Giles’, was found guilty of high treason and along with Hugh Cook Faringdon, the abbot of Reading Abbey, was hanged in front of the abbey gateway (reigning monarch at that time was Henry VIII).

Education

Rare prints found at the University of Reading

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Bennetto Photography William Caxton print from the 1470s

As reported by the BBC, the University has found incredibly rare printed pages by William Caxton believed to date from the 1470s. The only other pages from this book known to be in existence are eight leaves held by the British Library. I photographed Erika Delbecque, special collections librarian at the University along with the 500 year old printed pages. It’s good to see the images on the BBC!

The pages will go on public display from 10 to 30 May at the Museum of English Rural Life at the University of Reading.

 

BBC article
To read the full BBC article online visit: BBC: Incredibly rare William Caxton prints found

Events

Magic time for Notcutts

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Bennetto Photography: Notcutts event Marlow, Crowne Plaza

Magician Michael J Fitch entertains at the Notcutts event hosted at the Crowne Plaza, Marlow. Notcutts celebrated 120 years in their industry with multi-session seminars, fun, laughter, learning topped off with an awards filled evening to recognise their talented members of staff.

Magician Michael J Fitch has been on many TV programmes (Channel 4’s ‘Freaky Magic’, and BBC’s ‘Sorcerer’s Apprentice’) and his close up magic certainly entertained everyone at Notcutts. And, yes, his magic was too fast for my camera – I never caught anything that would help explain what we all witnessed! Doh! See more about Michael at his website

Events

Have you got the X Factor?

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X Factor auditions at the Broad Street Mall, Reading

X Factor Auditions at the Broad Street Mall, Reading as photographed by Bennetto Photography. Many gathered at the Broad Street Mall, Reading last week to audition for the X Factor: here are just two! Young and old alike auditioned for the X Factor – many thanks to everyone who allowed me to photograph them. Many were carrying their guitars or accessories and there were plenty of characters (as you would expect).

Good luck to those who are through to the next stage!