Welcome to my blog! My name is Laura Shimili and this is the blog for Laura Shimili Mears Photography. This is where I share updates about my photography mainly but also sometimes about my life as a mum to two boys, an Albanian married to an English and living in London since 2008. I have also lived in Paris where I graduated with a Master’s degree in Philosophy of Economics. 

Since the beginning of this year I decided to do more photography and develop a professional photography portfolio. I opened a facebook page to share my images and portfolio and it has been great as I have worked with many people. I am now building a portfolio specialising in:

  • Portraits and headshots 
  • Family photography
  • Maternity and newborn  

My interest in photography started during my student years in Paris (15 years ago) when I purchased my first semi-pro film camera. At the moment I shoot with a digital SLR. I have attended a number of courses and private tuitions with professional photographers and will start a formal qualification with the Society of Wedding and Portrait photographers later in the year. 

Apart from photography I have a long list of interests and activities that are dear to me. And I also have a job which I enjoy, in Business Development and Marketing in housing.

I am part of Help Them Grow, an initiative we have set up with 4 other Albanian mums living in London. We collect second hand toys and books and send them to Albanian state nurseries. We have helped 1550 children so far and continue to help more.

I support whenever I can initiatives that help refugees affected by the recent war in Syria and I follow and support Samara’s Aid Appeal in particular. I am planning to organise an event in July to raise funds through a ‘Headshort party’ event, stay tuned. 

I met my ‘English husband’, Roger who is from Devon, in Albania. He is a well-travelled man and went working oversees as a civil engineer. We had an amazing “Albanian wedding” after which we decided to move to London.   

If you visit this blog, I would love to hear from you. My facebook photography page is Laura Shimili Mears Photography I am also on twitter @shimili and on Instagram @shimilimearsphotography it would be great to be in touch.

Our Albanian wedding! 

Albanian traditional dance, the 'Eagles'

This is me and Roger, at our wedding in Tirana, performing a traditional dance ‘the Eagles’ wearing traditional Albanian costumes. Dancing is the most important part of an Albanian wedding (even more than food) and as such my English husband-to-be and I took lessons, to perfect it 😉

Have a lovely journey!

15 thoughts on “About

  1. Agree…..a fab photo! Looks timeless. Taking lessons was a good idea. My wife Jo is of Cypriot origin and our wedding was full of traditional dancing too……some done very badly by me. Luckily it was analogue days so evidence to post.

    Enjoying your blog…..and excited about ‘speaking’ with my first ever Albanian.


    • Hi John, thanks for your comment and for visiting my blog. The Cypriot dances must be similar to Albanians, I guess, they would have similar influences. I am pleased I’m the first Albanian you’ve met. Keep in touch.


    • I like your blog and reading your posts when I see them on wordpress reader. I started a project 365 which has slowed down at the moment as I cannot find the time to post every day. It lasted for 21 days though 🙂 But i am continuing to post photos regularly so in a way it is still going on… Lovely to meet you.


  2. How amazing! As a fellow Albanian, having lived in the US for 20 years now I am always curious about how others perceive and experience this unique country! Well done!


    • As you say, a unique country in many regards. You have lived in the US for longer than me in the UK (5 years so far) but I love to read other people’s views about Albania too, curiosity and a desire to compare thoughts and experiences I guess… Thank you for passing by and I hope to see you again


  3. Hi Laura

    Do you have an email address to get in contact with you about an exciting autumn photography feature Resident’s Journal at Run Wild Media would like to do for our November issue?


  4. Your wedding photo is gorgeous, and timeless. We’re also raising our children in 2 languages. Not easy every day, but so worth it in the end. Where did you study in Paris? I studied there too? (Sorbonne Nouvelle) Mel


    • Hi Mel, thank you so much. Our wedding was in the Albanian style, so like a big party with all our favourite people… Is it English and French you talking to you children? It can be quite frustrating doing that, right? I studied at Paris 1 (Pantheon-Sorbonne) and Paris 4 (Sorbonne). How amazing! What did you study? Laura x


  5. Hi Laura ! It’s a pleasure to read you ! Can you say a bit more about the LSJ ? I’m thinking of taking one of their journalism course. Would you recommend it ?


    • Hi Elise, thank you for your comment 🙂 I am happy to have a chat about the LSJ, they were very good, the tutor was very good and attentive. I did enjoy doing the course with them and i learnt a lot. It was the first thing i had ever done in learning about journalism and i did get a good grasp of how the industry works, how to pitch for work, the content and headlines, your sources, interviewing people, looking for stories and maintaining contacts with editors.
      I would recommend it certainly and what you’re going to do with it depends on your circumstances really. For me it was to have a first go at understanding journalism, and it was also related to my work at the time of policy work. It is still useful in my current role of business development and marketing as i have a good understanding of how press releases, writing copy etc works.
      It was also very satisfying to have had an article published in a national newspaper online, the guardian for which i also got paid. That was thanks to the course. I am happy to have a chat on the phone, if you need more detail.


      • Hello Laura, thank you for your reply ! It’s been very interesting. I wouldn’t refuse a chat on the phone or further email exchanges, if you don’t mind. I’m just starting in this journalism idea and might have further questions for you 🙂


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