Matara Awards


Iv never entered an awards competition before, mostly because I’m still relatively new to the industry and have been so busy with the real important job of serving my couples, I haven’t been able to commit the time to researching, entering and often paying to compete in them. However the Matara Centre made it pretty straight forward when they emailed me asking for my entry!

So into my first ever competition I went submitting the maximum of 5 photo’s. These went to a board of judges to whittle them down to a select few categories, and to my delight I had 3 photo’s make the cut!

As it stands my social media numbers pale when compared to some of the guys and gals who’ve been doing this much longer than I have, so I made the effort to ask friends, family and clients to have a look and vote if they felt inclined. I’m very grateful for all the votes, as after a total of nearly 1200 votes, one of my photo’s came out on top and won the Couples Moment of the year award!r day.

Matara Centre Awards 2017 Lee Hawley Photography Winner photographer

I love this photo so much. It has a heart-breaking back story that makes it even more beautiful in my eyes, but I will keep the details private out of respect for those involved. It is lovely to know though that even judged on face value, it is an image that has motivated people to vote for it.

Thank you if you voted for me. To win an award of any description so early in my wedding photography career is so exciting. Thank you also to everyone at the Matara Centre. It is a wonderful venue to shoot at, and they made me very welcome throughout the day. A truly beautiful venue.

The awards evening itself was brilliant. It was great to meet some other wedding suppliers and talk shop, as well as speaking to other photographers and hear about some of their experiences.

Tara and the team put on a wonderful meal, and a really personal and thoughtful prize giving. It was great to see some of my peers work and nobody could have left the night not feeling how incredibly creative and professional Gloucestershire wedding suppliers are. Despite desperately wanting to, I deliberately left my camera at home as not look like a complete nerd, so had to resort to a few silly Instagram stories!

As a wedding photographer I have to be a web designer, SEO specialist, graphic designer, accountant, finance dept, marketing team, social media expert, salesman, account manager, oh and a photographer! I can now maybe add to that the roll of entering end of year competitions. I’m still to be convinced those type of awards are worth entering. Many of which you have to pay for, and the voting system is by a panel not a public vote. But I can’t lie, it was really nice to win some recognition.

But first, I need to  nail another year of what is the most important thing, which is capturing more creative and natural wedding day moments! I cannot wait!

matara award

Posted by Lee Hawley