Top Marques Monaco 2014

I have had the pleasure of photographing many Super Cars over the past year so I was very excited to be going to Monaco last month to visit the Top Marques event, the most exclusive Super Car Show in the World!

It took place over the Easter Bank holiday, but luckily for me it started on Thursday 17th April so I could get there just for the day on the first flight out of Gatwick and the last one back before Monaco was heaving with all the Easter holiday makers on Good Friday.

My Journey

I flew to Nice airport and got the train from a little train station a short bus ride from the airport called “Nice St Augustin”. For a few euros I took the 30 minute journey along the coast line which must be one of the prettiest train journeys I’ve taken, it certainly beats the East Grinstead to Victoria line that I’m more familiar with.

We stopped at seven stations on the way and the train was certainly filling up with many people visiting Monaco for the tennis or the Top Marque Show. Once I got to Monaco it was an easy walk to the Grimaldi Forum home of the show. As I was approaching the forum I was just in the right place at the right time to photograph the arrival of the Lamborghini Aventador which took pride of place at the entrance to the show and was supplied by aaarentcars .

A Little Bit About Monaco

Monaco, officially the principality of Monaco is the second most densely populated country in the world! Prince Albert II is the head of state and has immense political power. Monaco has a coast line of 2.5 miles and the state has no income tax, low business tax and is well known for being a tax haven and is understandably attractive to the super wealthy.

The roads were very congested due to the ongoing building work as the new Yacht Club takes shape and the preparation for the Grand Prix in May.

Grimaldi Forum

The Grimaldi Forum is the main exhibition centre and very impressive too. On arrival I was just in time to join in the walk about that was going on with Prince Albert II, I managed to tag along with the press to get a few shots.

The cars on display were an incredible array of dynamic performance and aesthetic genius. With the added option of being able to test drive a selected few, this I’m sure was a big attraction to the many visitors over this four day event!

Super Cars

On display were cars by a variety of manufacturers Noble, Ferrari, Jaguar, McLaren, Quant, Tushek, Tesla, Lexus, Mercedes, Bentley, to name just a few. I was there to promote my photography of Classic and Super Cars and met with the dealers and spectators to show case my book which is designed with the serious collector in mind who would like to have their car or cars photographed to add value to their collection, but most importantly to document their car as a work of art and to reflect the owners lifestyle and finished in a bespoke limited edition book, this part of my website will tell you more.


I met many interesting people all with a passion for cars and the finer things in life. One lady in particular, a local resident, just passing the time of day was very keen to do a brief interview about me on her iphone for a blog she wanted to start.

If you would like to take time out in Monaco next year the Top Marques Show is from April 16th-19th April 2015, I’ll be back again to soak up a little more of my passion and of course the Cote D’Azur.


Thanks for reading.


The Alzheimers Society Fund Raising Evening

Thank you to everyone who visited us at our late night shopping evening in December 2013. We were very proud to showcase our photo booth courtesy of Booth Mania.

Michelle and John from Booth Mania set up their unit in the reception area here at SMS Creative Photography and did a great job in ensuring the evening was a hit with everyone! What a transformation it worked so well! Groups of up to six people wishing to join in could choose a hat, glasses or other fancy dress item to wear for the four different shots that were taken and presented on one sheet in seconds!

It was reminiscent of my childhood days of going into photo booths whilst out shopping with friends that gave us so much fun. The children don’t look at booths in the same way nowadays and are fortunate enough to enjoy the spontaneity of using their phones to capture images with their friends and share on social media (how neat is that).

We were taking donations in aid of the local Alzheimer’s  Society and raised £164, so thanks to everyone for their generosity in supporting this very worthy cause.

Take a look below for a glimpse of what went on, if you would like to hire out the booth for your event I can highly recommend Michelle and John from Booth Mania for a stress free fun packed time. Nothing was too much trouble for them and they certainly added to the atmosphere.

This is me presenting Andrew Cornwall a volunteer from local The Alzheimer’s Society with a cheque.

If you would like to have your own event to raise money for The Alzheimer’s Society please get in touch with Hannah Miller Community Fundraiser Surrey and West Sussex - East Region.

The Alzheimer's Society Fund Raising Evening 1
The Alzheimer's Society Fund Raising Evening 2

Thanks for reading



Each image we produce goes through a post production process to spruce it up and take out any blemishes and to colour correct. It is unlikely you'll produce a digital file that is true in colour, we make sure through a series of actions and layers that the colour balance is corrected. Take a look at the short video Fee has produced of her at work on the before and after image you can see below.

So now you are more familiar with what our skilled digital artists do. During the course of our Newsletters this year we will be giving you tips and advice as to how we work and how you can improve your photography.

SMS Creative Photography Retouching



Autumn Family Location Shoot

I love this time of year when the weather is chilly in the morning but still warm during the day with plenty of sunshine to remind us summer is just behind us, and ideal time for a Autumn Family Location Shoot. The days are getting shorter and the leaves are turning different shades of reds, yellows, browns and greens, so captivating. A perfect time to get your cameras out and experiment photographing at different times of day. I find the best time to photograph is early morning just as the sun is coming up you get some amazing light with the morning mist. Experiment using different lenses and don't be afraid to change your exposure to get different effects and lie on the ground to get different angles too. The afternoon sun is also great if you want to get some back light seeping through the trees just remember to put in your diary to have an Autumn Family Location Shoot.

We aren't short of locations here in Surrey especially in Oxted a picturesque backdrop for your family location shoot, ideal to furnish your walls and choose some for Christmas gifts too!

Autumn Family Location Shoot selection of photographs.

SMS Creative Photography Autumn Family Location Shoot

Happy shooting, make the most of the good weather over the weekend.


Lord Taverners versus Yankee Wanderers

On Tuesday Oxted & Limpsfield Cricket Club were playing host to a very special cricket match, The Lord Taverners versus the Yankee Wanderers for a charity game. Amongst the celebrities playing were Phil Tufnell, Jon Lewis, Andy Caddick, Vikram Solanki, Gareth Batty, Phil Spencer from Location Location and umpiring was Mike Gatting. I had the pleasure of photographing some of the event. This took place ahead of the Oxted & Limpsfield Beer Festival which opens on Friday 19th July at 7pm until Sunday 21st July 2013. Try and make time to go we are sponsoring a firkin "Eye Opener" try it and let me know what you think. There will be live music and cricket to entertain you and delicious food to satisfy those hunger pangs from The Gurkha Kitchen, Bang Wok and The Mobile Pizzeria. 

SMS Creative PhotographyLord Taverners versus Yankee Wanderers

Mike Gatting

SMS Creative PhotographyLord Taverners versus Yankee Wanderers  1

Phil Tufnell

SMS Creative PhotographyLord Taverners versus Yankee Wanderers  2

Lord Taverners versus Yankee Wanderers

I'll be back next week with photographs from the Beer Festival enjoy the weekend.


Review Gurkha Kitchen Oxted Tom Parker Bowles

Last Monday I received a phone call from Event Magazine the Mail on Sunday requesting the use of a photograph I took at the Gurkha Kitchen our amazing Nepalese restaurant here in Oxted. They went on to explain that Tom Parker Bowles the restaurant critic had recently visited the restaurant and they were looking for a photograph to accompany his write up in Sunday's magazine, they had seen my photographs on the Gurkha Kitchen's website and chose one best to suit his culinary experience.

Take a look at the online version as well as the feature in the Event magazine supplement.

SMS Creative Photography Review Gurkha Kitchen Oxted Tom Parker Bowles

I'll be back tomorrow with details and photographs about a garden here in Tandridge at the Chauffeur's Flat that is well worth a visit and open until 23rd June.