Last week, thanks to the generosity of Katie’s uncle Greg and his wife Inge (and also Katie’s parents), we spent 4 days sailing around the Whitsunday Islands.

Greg and Inge live in London with their 3 sons and one of their favourite activities is sailing. On their previous visit to Australia they invited Katie’s parents to join them and this time they kindly extended the invitation to us. Umm … heck yes! Lachlan (Katie’s little brother) came along for the trip as well.

Highlights of the trip were snorkling, stargazing, an adventure that occurred when our anchor let go at 3am one morning, and achieving a state of total relaxation for the first time in years.

Many people have commented that we seem to live a charmed life and you won’t get much argument from me. This year we have travelled and seen more amazing places than I ever thought we would. Two trips to Sydney, a visit to Melbourne, a month in America including stops in LA, New York, Las Vegas, Nashville and the Grand Canyon, a week in Thailand, and now 4 days sailing around the Whitsundays.

Even amongst all that travel, it’s rare for us to get the opportunity to fully switch off. If my memory serves me correctly, these 4 days away mark the longest period of time since our honeymoon (almost 5 years ago) that we’ve been able to completely switch off and disconnect from work. No e-mail, no phones and definitely no Facebook.

In my experience of the wedding photography industry so far, I’ve found that’s it’s definitely a challenge to hear your own ‘voice’ and have it cut through the digital noise of blogs and Facebook.  There’s also the challenge Katie and I face as a married couple when it comes to separating work and home, and relating to each other as husband and wife rather than as business partners.

It’s amazing the clarity that comes from switching off and disconnecting from our ‘always on/always connected’ lives.  We are extremely grateful for this opportunity to look inwards and chart a course to the future from within, rather than fighting through the noise and clatter of a multitude of external influences.

On the two hour car trip home from Brisbane airport, and after 4 days of not thinking about or mentioning work to each other, Katie and I found the ideas and plans bursting forth like a flood.  Not just business-related ideas but plans for starting a family and also ways to maintain a better work/home balance.  We talked excitedly about these ideas and plans which will see our lives go in a direction we would never have thought possible. Stay tuned for some exciting announcements!

For now, here’s a selection of some of my favourite images from our trip. Note:  In order to fully switch off, Katie has to leave her camera alone.  As a result, all of these images are mine.


Abel Point Marina, Airlie Beach

Within 20 minutes of landing at Proserpine, Katie and I put Lachlan on another plane to receive his 21st birthday present. Sky-diving! 4 days later on Hamilton Island he was still grinning.


Left: Katie found this beautiful heart-shaped rock | Right: Sand from Whitehaven Beach

Whitehaven Beach

Left: Mooring | Right: Our trusty vessel ‘Mystique’


The view from our hatch.

After sunrise the light was so soft and gorgeous.  I dragged Katie out of bed to model for me on the deck as we sailed to our next stop.

One of my favourite images of Katie that I’ve taken.

Work it baby.

Left: Whitehaven Beach | Right: A friendly cockatoo on Hamilton Island

My princess and me.

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  1. Beautiful shots! Katie, you look gorgeous!! Wow. Miss you guys!!
  2. So awesome that you guys got to have some time out. Katie, you are beautiful - and Matt, your love for Katie makes me smile...I can tell the feeling is mutual, which makes me smile even more. Funny story about the "friendly" birds on Hamilton Island...I recently shot a wedding there, and the last portraits we took were backlit in the hotel room with the sliding doors open. We forgot to close them, and the bride and groom arrived back at their room to find a bed and room full of poop, food (packets opened by the birds), and more poop. Eeek! Thank goodness they could see the funny side.......
  3. Fiona said:
    Oh wow, it looks like an amazing trip! Very exciting to hear about your exciting plans too:)(Your kiddies are going to be ridiculously good looking hehe). I'm a lazy commenter, so I will add here- I loved your "Story-within-a-story". Such amazing work! x
  4. julie said:
    awesome images! It's so sweet to see how in love you two are ;) Katie, gorgeous images of you!! Glad to see things are going so well.
  5. Nell said:
    Hey Guys awesome images and great story! isnt my back yard awesome lol! gotta love living up here!
  6. KatherineB said:
    How lucky are you too - what gorgeous pics to remember this by. That whitehaven pic should be a postcard sent all around the world - beautiful!!! Love the last one of you two lovebirds - too cute!
  7. What a lovely way to spend 4 days! Reminds me of my wedding on Hayman, isn't that part of the world just gorgeous! Good to hear you had some much needed down time :)
  8. Lovely images, I spent several years working on one of the Islands up in the Whitsundays years ago so I really enjoyed looking at these photos, Whitehaven Beach is AMAZING!!
  9. Annie said:
    Dang Katie - you look amazing having just been dragged out of bed! :D Matt these shots are incredible. I love the perspective and gorgeous simplicity. I hope you kept the rock!
  10. nancy said:
    thanks you two.. made me feel like I was there.. well.. almost! AND guess what! I collect heart shape shells and rocks.. from all over the world.. <3 <3
  11. Peta said:
    SOOO want to go there RIGHT now! Katie looks very 'rock' in some of those photos. Your talents are endless!
  12. Kellee said:
    Gorgeous pics Matt! I think we could all do with a few days shutdown in the Whitsundays :)
  13. Ngoc said:
    Matt, these images are so beautiful! Thank you for sharing! Glad the two of you had some time to yourselves and were able to be even more lovey dovey than I thought was possible! I can't wait for the exciting news!!! EEEEEkkkk ;)
  14. Lauren said:
    oh, this post bought back some awesome memories :) we sailed the whitsundays 3 years ago and I LOVED it! Those photos of Katie rock too :) so pretty!
  15. WOOOOOOOW!!! That looks AMAZING! Love all of your photos Matt, and especially the gooooorgeous ones of Katie, she's such a stunner!!! Glad you had time to switch off....