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A Photographer’s Insight- Prepping for Valentines PR Shoot

Having just done the Christmas press shots (click the link to see the results), Paul and I moved on to Valentine’s Day. Some may say it is a bit early, but we had to have a quick turn around for magazines that are already planning February editions. If you think about it, it is really only 2 months away

With hundreds of romantic locations and holiday cottages to choose from on our books it was hard to decide which property to do our Valentines PR shoot at. Also what kind of shoot would it be? Subtle romanticism or full-blown red roses, champagne, chocolate, declarations of love shoot?

We decided to go for the latter and opted for The Tower, which has am amazing, ornate, carved wooden four-poster bed in a hexagonal tower complete with gothic windows and fireplace.

We tried to source everything locally, as there is an amazing quality of produce in the area and it is great support local businesses.The tastiest item (and the one I was most looking forward to) of this set was the artisan chocolates, which we got from Black Mountain Gold  in Crickhowell.

(Image: Jules James and Black Mountain Gold logo from blackmountaingold.org)

The Master Chocolatier, Jules James, who was born in Wales and raised in Canada knows A LOT about chocolate and has a great taste for exciting and mouth watering flavours! We wanted a box that had red elements in it with other chocolate looking truffles in a red heart box, Jules had exactly this and created a selection of truffles that had varying colours and textures.

Jules kindly opened especially for Paul and I as Mondays the shop is closed, and let us try a few (try the salted caramel chocolate). You can also have chocolate making days and they do melted hot chocolate in the café! Even looking at the website has started tingling my taste buds. So Good.

Unfortunately Champagne comes from Champagne, and not from the Brecon Beacons (which does do great whisky from the Penderyn distillery http://www.welsh-whisky.co.uk/), so we borrowed a bottle of Veuve Clicquot and silver tray from Peterstone Court, a Georgian country house and local wedding hot spot. If you are looking for fine dining in the area, this family owned group of Country Houses offers locally sourced produce on their menus from Glaisfer, their private farm. Peterstone Court and The Manor in Crickhowell both retain Rosette Awards and offer spa facilities, perfect for treating yourself on a romantic visit to the Beacons. Boat Cottage which is another romantic destination is also linked to Glaisfer Farm.

For the roses we wanted, deep red, large buds that were half open, the only place to really get these was with a local florist, we found one in Abergavenny called Hilary’s Floral Design. A friendly and helpful florist called Charlotte helped us out with these. We then discovered she has won Interflora Florist of the Future and RHS Chelsea Flower Show for a unique creation (which you can see in the shop)!

(Image: Hilary and Charlotte in center from Hilarysflowers.co.uk)

(My image of the flowers several days later- STILL GOING STRONG!- Sorry for the not so great flower arrangement Charlotte. Not as good as you.)

To see the results of our shoot, come back tomorrow!