weshootlondon: Blog https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog en-us (C) weshootlondon info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Mon, 16 Mar 2020 06:56:00 GMT Mon, 16 Mar 2020 06:56:00 GMT https://www.weshootlondon.com/img/s/v-12/u380608566-o293419585-50.jpg weshootlondon: Blog https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog 90 120 Back To The Future With Fuji X-Pro 2 and Pentax 645D https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2016/4/back-to-the-future-with-fuji-x-pro-2-and-pentax-645d Why the reference to the classic Michael J Fox movie? Well I've switched camera systems from Canon to Fuji X... Ever the procrastinator I hung on to one of my Canon 5D3 bodies and a few of the lenses, and for good reason which I'll eventually explain.

I bought the Fuji X-Pro 1 when it first came thinking it would be perfect for weddings and events where it wasn't practical to have a huge SLR kit. But I didn't keep it for long because as much as I liked it I couldn't get it to work well enough for the type of work I was doing. Fast forward a few years and I believe the X-Pro 2 has addressed the issues I had all those years ago. I'm still getting used to it but it so far so good. The coffee shop image was from a day in the life of shoot with Fitness & Health Expert Pete Williams who needed a range of images for his website. 

I won't bore you with all the technical details and camera settings other than to say it was shot at 3200 iso yet produces a lovely file with a lovely film-like grain and looks great at 100%.

Selling off a lot of the Canon gear meant that i was able to pick up a Pentax 645D on-line at a steal of a price. The 645D is a 5 year old cameras so i guess digitally it's really old. But my association with the Pentax 645 goes back much further to the original film version which handled so well that I used it to cover professional boxing as well as weddings.

For this shoot I used the 645D as well as the Canon 5D3 (I will post images). The Canon I used with the 17mm Tilt-Shift lens to shoot an interior and couldn't have got that picture with the other 2 cameras, which is part of the reason why I kept a 5D3. See I'm not just a habitual-hoarder ;)

 

Coffee To Start The DayPete Williams Fitness & Health Expert

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Fuji X-Pro 2 Pete Williams Portrait Reportage https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2016/4/back-to-the-future-with-fuji-x-pro-2-and-pentax-645d Thu, 14 Apr 2016 00:20:01 GMT
Cutting Cardboard https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/9/cardboard

Working on some concepts for Asendia. Just finished Norway. Have Spain, America, Germany and the Nordic Regions to go. Looking good but sore fingers from cutting out all this cardboard.

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Assendia Christmas Tree Norway cardboard editorial concept https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/9/cardboard Wed, 09 Sep 2015 01:18:55 GMT
Finding Niru https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/8/finding-niru Photographed an aptly named marine conservationist called Niru (pronounced Nero) for the Marine Professional Magazine. A co-founder of Whalefish, he has just spent the best part of two Months working on the Eastern side of Russia. Welcome home Niru!

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Marine Marine Mammal Biologist Sea Whalefish conservation conservationist daylight portrait water https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/8/finding-niru Fri, 28 Aug 2015 17:45:53 GMT
Brogues in 50mm https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/8/brogues-in-fifty-mill Brogues in 50mmWedding Preparation: Detail shot of Groom's shoes

Dontcha just love a man in brogues. Isn't that a saying? Well it should be if it isn't. This fine pair belonged to Redmond whom I was photographing on the morning of his wedding at his flat in Tooting. All the groomsmen including page-boy were decked out in similarly fine shoes but I'd say Redmond just about nicked it. 

I shot this using my Canon EF 50mm f1.4. a lens i don't often use much because when I'm bang on it it usually miss-focusses a frame or two, but as you can see when I've time to compose and lock that focus the results are great.. really sharp on point of focus then falling of into that dreamy blurry bokeh we photographers all love (and go on about just a wee bit too much). Must endeavour to find more occasions to use this lens.

Canon 5D Mk III, 1/60sec, f1.8, ISO 1600

 

 

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Bokeh Brogues Canon Eos 5D3 Depth of Field Event Photography London Wedding London Wedding photographer Shoes Wedding Photography Wedding Prep groom suit https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/8/brogues-in-fifty-mill Wed, 05 Aug 2015 14:50:04 GMT
Auntie Val's Jams https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/7/auntie-vals-jams Val and Andy of Auntie Val's KitchenVal and Andy of Auntie Val's Kitchen shot for Redactive Media

 

Richard had the pleasure of going down to Auntie Vals's Limited in Pulborough where he was to shoot Val and her husband Andy for Redactive Media. He came away pleased that he got the shot but left feeling very impressed and a little humbled by the good work that they do employing the disabled and those with special needs. He also pointed out that their jams were pretty damned tasty too.

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Redactive Media Special Needs chutney disability disabled elderly couple jam jars magazine cover portrait https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/7/auntie-vals-jams Wed, 15 Jul 2015 12:49:40 GMT
Abbey Road Wedding https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/6/abbey-road-wedding

Back at Abbey Road again but this time not in the studio but at a synagogue for Hannah & Nick's (and my first) Jewish wedding. All wedding photographers should be  obliged to do at least one of these before they hang up their cameras… it is an unforgettable experience. It was a loooooong long day... 13 hours long to be exact. It began at 11:00 am Hendon Hall Hotel for the bridal prep then on to The New London Synagogue for the ceremony and ended just after midnight on the dance floor in the Pemeberton Suite of Hendon Hall Hotel where the bride had the last word.
 
At that point my flat aching feet had just about given up the ghost and all I wanted to do was fall into the bed but of course that wasn’t going to happen as Nick & Hannah insisted I have a few drinks with them.
 
But let me back up a little. If this was a typical Jewish wedding then Jewish weddings rooool! This is a proper celebration of marriage with singing and dancing at breakbeat intervals starting in the synagogue and continuing through to breakfast the following morning. You really needed to have your wits about you with good technique and not a little bravery to capture the amazing, sometimes intricate, sometimes violent dance routines. In fact Rahul my second shooter who also shoots live bands remarked that it was crazier than the mosh-pit at a Prodigy concert - but he was quite at home being point blank range from a groom being propelled towards him by enthusiastic groomsmen. Me I preferred the serenity of the parachute dance but then again I’ve always been a bit of a wimp.
 
I’m still editing the images and hope to show some others soon but for now I’ve chosen this one to post because... I don’t know, it’s Abbey Road innit.
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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Abbey Road Abbey Road Studios Canon Eos 5D3 George Harrison Jewish Wedding John Lennon London Wedding London Wedding photographer Wedding dress Wedding photography Wedding veil Zebra crossing blue sky bolero bouquet bride button hole groom suit https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/6/abbey-road-wedding Tue, 23 Jun 2015 15:07:12 GMT
At Abbey Road... Again https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/5/at-abbey-road-again Abbey Road Studio 2: A Steinway Model D concert grand piano at Abbey Road Studios.

 

The first time I went to Abbey Road Studios was as a competition winner a couple of years ago to see one of my favourite musicians (like ever) Paul Weller play live in Studio One. So excited was I about seeing him that I completely overlooked the fact that Abbey Road studios is a quite special place (understatement) and does indeed come with quite a bit more history than four stoned dudes crossing the nearby zebra-crossing. In fact i was inteviewed for TV at the Weller gig about what it meant to be here. I was really really enthusiastic, honest I was but I think they wanted me to be at least a little bit enthusiastic about being in The Abbey Road Studios as I was about seeing Weller. But the truth of the matter was that we could have been anywhere. I was just excited about seeing Paul Weller play in venue so intimate that I could reach out and touch him. I somehow doubt they used the footage.

So I was back there last week shooting a corporate event for a new client. And it was a quite fantastic party... oh to be a guest at this one. But I wasn't and I worked my socks off as usual but I did get to hear some of the tour and heard amongst other things some amazing Rock 'n' Roll anecdotes.

My assistant Lucy was busy shooting selfies against all bits of musical history. Like I said I was working my socks off but I did manage to snap the beautiful Steinway Grand as we were packing the gear away.

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Abbey Road Studios Canon Eos 5D3 Event Photography Film Grain George Harrison John Lennon Let it Be London Event Photography Low point of view Low-Light Photography Merrill Corporation Parquet Flooring Paul McCartney Paul Weller Ringo Starr The Beatles https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/5/at-abbey-road-again Thu, 14 May 2015 00:15:27 GMT
Paparazzo For a Day At The Asian Awards 2015 https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/4/paparazzo-for-a-day-at-the-asian-awards-2015

I was part of the paparazzi massives on Friday night covering the Asian Awards for a friend. It promised to be exciting with all kinds of big names supposedly attending including the recently departed One Direction band member Zayn Malik. Not that many of the ‘papz’ believed he or any big name would turn up. So the first lesson I learned is that 'cynicism is a norm’.

It’s a little chaotic with fans holding their iPhones and selfie sticks overrunning the press pen. Security eventually move them out and some kind of order is restored. The paparazzi all handi in their NUJ cards to a designated leader who draws them ‘out of a hat’ and allocates a space in the pen in accordingly. Not having an NUJ card (must sort that out) and not realising what’s going on until most spaces have been taken I find a space on what I guess is the 3rd row. It is inhabited solely by me. I’m pretty tall I’ll be fine I tell myself… wrong. Everyone on the second row has steps and the guy infront of me (let’s call him Nikon Man)  is quite short so he has really tall steps. I don’t have many options and despair a little.
 
Sure enough when the celebs start to arrive, i find myself shooting through the gaps in Nikon mans arms or just holding my camera over his head and shooting blind. This really isn’t ideal but I do manage to get the odd shot. After 20 minutes of this it turns out that there is an unused ladder which a Getty Images photographer is kind enough to let me use. I must say it does make a difference when the celebs can see you and actually look in your direction a la Colin Jackson and Meere Syal & Sanjeev Bhaskar.
 
There is a kind of order to these things i notice. The press guys seem to have a system that in theory should allow them all to get their images with minimal fuss but with the paparazzi outside of the pen also desperate to get shots there is a lot of barking instructions at the celebs at all directions… It all seems a little demeaning at times for all parties but I guess that’s just the way it is. 
 
The show is about to start and a certain ex One Direction member has not arrived. Is he even coming? No according to the hardened cynics. Still there’s plenty of banter and eggy farts to while away the time in case he does. It’s always worth a sneaky peek at the event organisers clipboard or it’s digital equivalent iPad and sure enough it looks as if one is about to tweet that Zayn Malik has arrived. I tell the guys around me and we shoot the hell out of the next car that pulls up. It’s occupant isn’t a celebrity at all but I think she really loved the 3 seconds of fame. 
 
The next car however is Zayn and all hell breaks loose.
 
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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Colin Jackson Event Photography Gurinder Chadha Jasmin Walia London Event Photography Meera Syal Naughty Boy One Direction PR Photography Paparazzi Preeya Kalidas Sanjeev Baskhar Tasmin Lucia Khan The Asian Awards Zayn Malik https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/4/paparazzo-for-a-day-at-the-asian-awards-2015 Mon, 20 Apr 2015 15:50:05 GMT
A Not Too Conventional Company Portrait https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/4/a-not-too-conventional-company-portrait Love this staff photograph of the 'This Place' team. The Shoreditch-based User Interface/User Experience agency. You may also recognise somebody that we've worked with recently in this picture. A certain Mr Hew Leith of utilitarian PR company 10x. This picture came about because Hew's company shares some rather nice office space with 'This Place' and on a recent shoot for Hew it was expedient for all to grab a portrait of the 'This Place' team. Yes there were a few pictures where not everybody was being silly and even a couple where everyone faced the camera. I have to say the Frank the office dog was remarkably well behaved considering.

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Corporate Photography Office dog Staff portraits Team Photograph User Experience User Interface portrait utilitarian PR' We Shoot London Portraits https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/4/a-not-too-conventional-company-portrait Fri, 17 Apr 2015 12:13:41 GMT
Foreign & Commonwealth Office https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/4/emma-wade-obe Emma Wade OBE at The Foreign & Commonwealth OfficeEmma Wade OBE, foreign and security policy counsellor and FCO global champion for flexible working, British Embassy Washington DC, gets an ovation from the audience at the Women Of The Future Ambassadors Event at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office.

I was at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office recently covering The Women of The Future Ambassadors Programme. I'd never been there before and I have to say it is a pretty impressive building. It came with the usual and understandable security caveats so I couldn't photograph certain areas but this picture gives an idea of just how grand the building is. 

Equally as impressive were the speakers who were there to inspire and motivate the sixth form school girls chosen for the programme. The highlight of which appeared to be Farah Pandith who served in the White House under both George W Bush and Barack Obama. 

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Event Photography Foreign & Commonwealth Office Interior Photography PR Photography Public-Speaking We Shoot London Event Photography https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/4/emma-wade-obe Mon, 13 Apr 2015 12:01:33 GMT
Nobody Gives A Sh!t About Event Photography, Not Even Event Organisers! Discuss. https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/2/nobody-gives-a-sh1t-about-event-photography-not-even-event-organisers-discuss

Nobody gives a shit about event photography not even event organisers! 

I guess I should start by qualifying that statement: It doesn’t apply to event photographers. 

I’d also say most of my regular clients clearly give a shit (to a degree) and try to make sure that the event environment is conducive to good photography. Other event organisers may give a... but don't know how to ensure that the event environment is conducive to producing good photography and so make honest mistakes: such as hiring a brilliant bank of UV lights that turns everybody that weird night-club colour and gives them uber-white teeth.

But, there is another group that don't give photography much thought and probably only have a photographer because the sponsor wants photographs of the event. They will do nothing to ensure that the environment is capable of producing good photography as their primary concern seems to be the bottom line. Nothing wrong with that you may argue and there need not be if that 'bottom line fixation' doesn’t actually hinder good photography. (Deciding to have zero budget for lighting definitely falls into the 'hindering good photography' category).

And those people in the last group, why are they the most demanding? They expect you to produce gorgeous Rembrandt-lit images from near-darkness....Do they think it's just a case of turning up with a digital camera and magic will happen. There is no doubting that camera sensor technology has come a long way but photographers still need a little bit of light to produce great photography.  In fact some conferences are so dark that if I was a delegate I’d be distraught not to find a pair of military-issue night vision goggles in my conference pack. Ok I'm being flippant but you get my point.

The irony is that spending a bit of money on creating the right environment could actually help the bottom-line. Now I haven’t anything empirical to back this up, what with this being an off-the-cuff rant and all, but I will say that two of my smaller clients have told me they are happy to pay for my services because I make them appear bigger and more established than what they are and this they tell me has a 'direct' effect on their revenue.

I hope to share my new experiences of all the different types of event work that I do in forthcoming blogs and those experiences may or may not disprove the opening statement. But I will end for now with a scene all too familiar to us event photographers. You're walking through the lobby of a grand hotel armed with a couple of super sensitive digital SLRs and a peli-case full of the best low-light lenses available. You are the Chuck Norris of event photography and feel confident that you can beat the daylights out of anything the event demons can throw at you. You confidently push open the heavy ballroom door as if it was a prop from a 30’s B-movie strut inside then realise that the whole event is lit solely by the ballroom chandelier. Aarrghhh!

 
 

 

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Ballroom Ballroom Chandelier Bottom Line Chuck Norris Event Organisers Event Photography Event Sponsor Grand Hotel Great Event Photography London Event Photography PR Photography SLR conference digital camera lighting low-light sensor https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/2/nobody-gives-a-sh1t-about-event-photography-not-even-event-organisers-discuss Wed, 18 Feb 2015 16:28:38 GMT
Watch This Space https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/1/watch-this-space

 

This is from a shoot we did for a very cool start-up called 10x. A company that I'm sure you'll be hearing a lot about in the near-future. When their MD and founder Hew Leith briefed us he had a very specific shot in mind which Richard and I were very excited about executing. We had been hoping for a nice day but it was the 23rd December so weren't overly optimistic. But, as it happened the morning of the shoot was gorgeous and blue-skyed, however it was just a tease because as we got closer to the scheduled time the sun was flitting in and out of great patches of cloud before finally disappearing (just as we started shooting) behind some serious rain clouds. 

 

The wind wasn't being kind either (understatement if ever) so we had to abandon any idea of using softboxes and our favourite Photek 60" softlighter, which was a shame, but I had visions of being the defendant in a Gross negligence trial and could imagine counsel for the prosecution saying... 

"So, Mr Jones you really didn't think it was foreseeable that using a 5-foot umbrella on a high roof-top in gale force conditions could result in your equipment and unfortunate assistant being blown onto the live railway tracks below

It really wasn't worth the risk, so we improvised and Hannah our assistant was worth her weight in gold in helping us get a pretty decent set of shots on a quite challenging day.

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) 10x London Corporate Photography PR Photography Urban landscape photography Utilitarian PR We Shoot London Portraits weare10x weshootlondon https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2015/1/watch-this-space Tue, 20 Jan 2015 14:26:54 GMT
John Obi Mikel of Chelsea FC & Nigeria https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2014/11/john-obi-mikel

One Tuesday afternoon I get a phone call from Hannah at High Life Productions (our production partners)  asking if we're available to do a shoot the following day. Of course we are. Who is it, where, and what's the brief? It's a Chelsea footballer. Where is undecided and the brief is on its way. Okay we usually have a little bit more to work with but those were the conditions and we'd deal with it. We booked the large cove in The Worx Studios as we expected the footballer in question to be volleying some balls over our heads and showing of his range of nifty ball skills. As it happens we only needed to shoot him from the waist up in his kit, but hey whatcha gonna do. The footballer in question turned out to be John Obi Mikel and he would be promoting an energy drink (Bullet) that would be shown on billboards in his home country Nigeria.

 John and his crew arrived (a little late) and thought that they would be in and out in 20 minutes. We said it would be nearer 3 hours. Cue Mexican-standoff (I exaggerate of course). No, we happily agreed a compromise and shook on it. I have to say he was the perfect gent and model throughout and was quite the joker which I would never have guessed from his demeanour when he plays football. I guess that's what you look like when you have to play for Jose Mourinho!

Here's the first test shot before he went into wardrobe and make-up. We'll be posting some of the billboards shot at a later time, subject to clearance.

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Billboard Chelsea Energy Drink FC High Life Productions Jose Mourinho Nigerian Premier League Studio The Worx drink footballer midfielder portrait studio https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2014/11/john-obi-mikel Thu, 27 Nov 2014 23:10:44 GMT
A Little Irreverence Lightens The Day https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2014/7/the_quiet_ones

This is an image from Heather & Lincoln's wedding. I've known them both for some time and whilst I wouldn't say Lincoln was reserved (far from it) he would be the last person that I would expect to put on a performance during such a serious occasion. Weddings needn't necessarily be serious, you may say and I would agree but up until this point this wedding had taken on a relatively sombre mood. Father Alfred, confronted by a din of chattering guests, felt sufficiently annoyed to admonish everyone for being 'disrespectful of his church' and then admonished them once more when he felt the first telling-off hadn't worked. Cue scared silence.

So providing light entertainment during the key moments of the wedding might not have been the wisest thing for Lincoln to do. But as you can see it went down a storm with the audience and I'm happy to report with clergy too.

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Bride Catholic Church Groom Kiss Laugh Laughter Marriage Mixed Couple We shoot London Weddings Wedding applause https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2014/7/the_quiet_ones Sat, 19 Jul 2014 23:20:39 GMT
Penny At Her First Networking Event https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2014/7/penny-topson Penny Topson, Multiplication RulesPenny Topson, Multiplication RulesPenny Topson founder of 'Multiplication Rules' seems lost in a sea of dark suits at the Inspirational Women's Networking hosted by JP Morgan, Canary Wharf.

 

Penny (centre wearing flowery dress) is founder of a company called 'Multiplication Rules' which devises learning aids to helps autistic kids with their understanding of maths. I suggested that she attend one of the women's networks that I photograph so that she could meet other entrepreneurial women who could maybe help her take her business on to a new level. Being a little diffident I could see she wasn't too keen on the idea but to give her credit she went along and despite trying to sneak out early she was persuaded to stay till near the end.

When I looked back through the pictures of the night I was pleased by how this turned out as it sums up how she must have felt being at this event: a maverick alone amongst a blur of high-powered dark suits... I did feel a little bad about it. But the camera does lie a little and she is in fact talking to the lady left of centre and another lady obscured to her right.

 

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Corporate Event Photography Entrepreneurs London Event Photography Pinky Lilani OBE Tilt-Shift Women Networking Women's Network https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2014/7/penny-topson Sat, 19 Jul 2014 22:51:17 GMT
How Do You Make a Roomful of Entrepreneurs Laugh? https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2013/7/Entrepreneurs_laugh Events, Awards, Roundtables, Conferences

Don't let anyone ever tell you cricketers are boring. Ex-England captain Graham Gooch was in fine form when he filled the final slot of the Real Business 'Entrepreneurs Summit'. It had already proven to be a brilliant event with near-messianic performances from Lord Bilimoria (Cobra Beer) and Richard Reed (Innocent) so I was probably not alone in feeling a little worried for Mr Gooch having to follow such class acts. But as the picture attests there was no need to for fear because he had the crowd eating out of his hand. Somewhere in amongst the cricketing anecdotes there were references to leadership and entrepreneurial spirit... a little tenuous one could confidently argue but I'm not sure that anyone minded in the slightest.

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info@weshootlondon.co.uk (weshootlondon) Business Cobra Beer Cricket Entrepreneur Graham Gooch Innocent drinks Investec Leadership London Event Photography Lord Karan Bilimoria Richard Reed SME https://www.weshootlondon.com/blog/2013/7/Entrepreneurs_laugh Tue, 16 Jul 2013 18:14:50 GMT