2015

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In reviewing the weddings that I photographed during 2014 I stated that it “may well have been the most intriguingly interwoven year that I’ve experienced as a wedding photographer.” I’m not certain that 2015 proved to be any more intriguingly interwoven but I dare say that it proved at least equally so, interlinked from beginning to end quite literally if not throughout exclusively.

My first wedding of the year took place in the middle of January in Bedfordshire, my final in the middle of December in Dorset. That first wedding saw Tom marry Nicki. The last saw another Tom marrying Lizzie. Both Toms served as ushers at each others weddings and indeed the ushers teams at both weddings included grooms from weddings I’d photographed in previous years – Huw whose marriage to Kim I’d photographed in 2010, and Ben whose marriage to Lit I’d photographed the following year – and both Toms had served as ushers at those weddings too. A neatly sewn up pattern that gave me pleasure to behold and all the more pleasure again to weave myself into the fabric of, even more so – yet again – by virtue of the fact that both Toms, Huw and Ben, and a number of others again at all of these weddings had been students of mine during the previous decade.

This is some of what I saw then – and in between – throughout 2015… View full post »

Somerset Wedding Photography : Aaron & Natalie

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My trusty SatNav had told me that the bed and breakfast I’d stayed at was ten minutes drive from Aaron & Natalie’s Bristol home, so I allocated twenty minutes to get there. As it happened, I was ready to leave thirty minutes before my allotted arrival time so off I went. Ten minutes later, I was not much more than a tenth of the way there. It seemed the whole car driving world had a liking for Bristol as great as mine – it is indeed a vibrant city with a great deal to offer – and they’d all set off an extra minute ahead of me. Thirty minutes later I completed that ten minute journey so I was on time after all. Had I been stressed by that journey in the slightest – which I was but very much in the slightest, I’ll add – then my first meeting with Aaron would have dissipated any tension immediately, and indeed it did; a beaming tower of affability and positive energy. He and Natalie would marry at Priston Mill amidst gently rolling West Country hills later in the day and in later meeting her, too, I found the equation balanced perfectly; another positive person to be in the presence of. I had an exciting time of it all from beginning to end, surrounded by people of great warmth and plentiful exuberance, all the makings of a celebration to be remembered. This is the story of Aaron & Natalie’s wedding day, with an occasional detour down the side roads of my mind… View full post »

Dublin Wedding Photography : Stephen & Isobel

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I was bought, as a wedding present, for Stephen & Isobel by Stephen’s brother, Gavin. More accurately speaking, perhaps, my services as a photographer were bought for them by Gavin. I got to return to my other life afterwards with fantastically rich memories of people and place to carry with me, such memories to wrap up and deliver back to Stephen & Isobel. Gavin had been a student of mine, many moons ago. As it happens, I’d enjoyed being a guest at his and Becky’s wedding – Becky having also been a student of mine – several years back, before I’d set out on my journey as a wedding photographer. I’d gone on to photograph the two of them, here and there, as guests at the wedding of another pair or former students, Kath & Ian, during the interim years.

Each of those weddings was populated by brilliant people and such would be the case, I was certain, come time to immerse myself in Stephen & Isobel’s wedding day. My certainty was perfectly well placed. Stephen & Isobel live in London but first got together some years ago as students of philosophy at university in Dublin. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know them on their wedding day; intelligent, witty, warm-hearted characters that knew how to put on and enjoy a hearty celebration.

Now I’ve been to paradise but I’d never been to Meath before (I’ve my fingers crossed that at least a few Irish readers will get the reference, but that particular song is from some way back so I’ll uncross them to facilitate ongoing use of my keyboard) and it was in that county, in the village of Ballymagarvey, that Stephen & Isobel did the deed and partied with aplomb. With a fleeting prologue featuring a day of my own as I immersed myself in a particular aspect of Irish landscape that I especially love myself – I always provide myself with a buffer day when photographing weddings outside of the UK mainland, just to be safe and all – this is the story of their wedding day. View full post »

Sopley Mill Wedding Photography : Harriet & Gellan

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It rubs off on you. People’s energy. It rubs off on you and sinks deep below the pores and when that energy is abundantly positive, when it’s intertwined with compassion of spirit, emotional creativity and a thirst for what’s right in life, well, that’s just so good a thing to bathe yourself in, from time to time, to absorb, to carry with you beyond. Dip a toe in. Take a paddle. Plunge. Glide across the surface and swim deep below. It rubs off on you, it journeys in to you, and it lasts. In memories. Memories that can trigger those same feelings all over again. Energy can be neither created nor be destroyed, but it transforms from one form to another.

Harriet & Gellan married at St. Alban’s church in the Charminster district of Bournemouth, Dorset, and celebrated at Sopley Mill in splendidly rustic countryside just across the border into Hampshire. Working with them, serving as their story-teller in images that are still, relating a story effervescent with the motion of life; all provided me with a solid recharging of the old emotional batteries.

I’ll plug them in here. Tell a story. The story of Harriet & Gellan’s wedding day. View full post »

Lulworth Castle Wedding Photography : Hannah & James

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Something struck me quite deeply as I was performing the initial image review from the set of photographs that I’d taken on Hannah & James’s wedding day. It was something that does often strike me when undertaking such reviews, but on this particular occasion there was something that moved me to put pen to paper (maybe it was the particular alignment of my chair with my computer monitor at that moment, maybe the momentarily distinct hue of the Spring sunlight attempting to radiate its way through the window blinds in my darkened editing room, maybe the cooing of a dove perched on the windowsill at the top of my stairs – at least I assume it was a dove; the blinds on that window were drawn against the light, too). I quickly reconsidered the logistics involved in employing pen and paper and resorted to putting finger to keyboard instead; I sent an email to Hannah & James; it hadn’t been with the intention of weaving those same words into a blog feature on their wedding but now that I come to penning… rather, typing that feature, it seemed fitting to me to relate what I’d had to say.

“It’s always my hope that my clients will not only be reminded of the material and chronological details of their wedding day when they look back on their photographs down the years, but that they’ll also feel the same feelings they’d experienced that day, over and over again. I was reminded of this notion somewhat strongly when curating the full delivery set of your photographs, prior to commencing work on editing the individual images. I met so many lovely people on your wedding day and witnessed so many lovely things, from the tender to the outright hilarious, and it did all come flooding back for me (people I’d spoken with and really, really liked, speeches that only failed to completely buckle me in half with laughter as I had to keep a grip in favour of actually taking photographs, jaw-dropping feats of dancing and so on) so I trust it will do likewise and more again for you.”

And that is what I’d felt, and that is how I’d felt about the people I’d spent that day amongst, and… and what of Hannah & James themselves? I’ll let their vicar speak on my behalf, as what she had to say about the two echoed perfectly what I felt about them myself. I may need to paraphrase – certainly I’ll be able to capture the essence – I wasn’t taking notes as my hands were busy with my camera but I was listening, intently so. What one hears can oftentimes inform the making of an image as much as what one sees. Add to that the remaining senses, usually something more again. Hannah & James’s vicar said that you know good people when you meet them, and that’s just what these two are.

Hannah & James married at Lulworth Castle in Dorset, in a church within the castle grounds, celebrating into the night within the castle walls. This is the story of their wedding day… View full post »