How I Work
My style is very much documentary, blending into the background with a creative edge, capturing the moments of your day as they unfold. 90% of what I do is totally unscripted documentary unstaged moments, the other 10% is portraits and family group photos. The most important thing is that you and your guests have an amazing day, and to get the best out of your photography, the key is to keep your day flowing; I have noted a few pointers below, which can help us with this.
Schedule of your day
To help me understand and visualise what’s happening and when, please provide a brief schedule of the key events of your day, so I can be sure to be in the right place at the right time.
If your day is in winter remember it gets dark early, so you may want to consider this when planning your ceremony time.
Also, in your schedule be sure to allow time for any group photos, or photos of just the two of you. Please see my advice below on timings for these.
I like to allow at least two hours photography for Bridal preparation.
Be sure to allow plenty of time whilst getting ready, giving you plenty of time to relax, making time for everyone’s hair and make up to be done, for present giving and receiving, parents/ friends arriving, bubbly and travel to your ceremony of course.
Anything in particular you would like to be photographed, just leave it out and I’ll be sure to spot it. I’m not a photographer who will move things and photograph the details for ages, I shoot things as I see them.
I always like to try to leave at least half a hour ahead of the Bride for the ceremony, with this in mind, you may want to consider any photographs you might like before your ceremony (i.e dress going on, Father of the Brides arrival). If you’d like me to travel with you to your ceremony, just let me know.
It’s important to check to see if there are any photography restrictions during your ceremony. Church weddings in particular can have strict rules and regulations, meaning that some parts of your ceremony may not be able to be photographed.
Exiting your Ceremony
Usually, as a newly married couple, you will be the first to exit down the aisle after your ceremony, shortly followed by your wedding party and all of your guests. From experience, I have found that from here there can sometimes be a long waiting time with everyone queuing to exit your ceremony. To help keep the flow, I have discovered this to be the perfect time for you both to have a few moments alone. By walking away from the ceremony exit, hidden from your guests for just a few minutes, this time allows everyone to get out much quicker, get confetti ready and also allows me to grab a few photos of you both alone.
If confetti is permitted and you’d like it on your day, make sure you have plenty of it, the more the merrier! Go for big chunky petals or biodegradable paper, which will show up better in your photos. If given out in baskets, guests can grab large handfuls, making it a nice, easy and quick process. Have your Bridesmaids and Groomsmen help organise everyone ready with confetti, keep ignoring me and enjoy it.
As a documentary wedding photographer, staged group photos aren’t really my thing. However, I understand that with family and friends are gathered together, you may want some formal photographs. Please be mindful that these can affect the schedule and timings of the day. I tend to keep these to a maximum of 6 group photographs variations i.e Brides family, Grooms family etc. I’d say to allow at least half an hour for up to 6 different family group photos, I like to keep these quick and relaxed so you can get back to celebrating. After your ceremony and before your meal is the best time for your group photos to take place. It is also a good idea have someone to help gather and organise everyone together for these photos. This is also the only time you should really notice me, and where you will be directly looking at the camera. Please note that unless I have prior knowledge of any group photos/ a focus on any specific individuals, the remaining day will be documentary photography.
Just the two of you
It’s a great idea to put aside some time for photos of just the two of you. I like to keep these fun, relaxed (bellies full and a glass of bubbly in hand) and as natural as possible, a walk in or around your venue, it’s all about having some time together and taking it all in. The more time you allow for this the better and the more relaxed you’ll be. My favourite time of the day for these photos is at golden hour, which is about an hour before Sunset. Depending on location, this usually takes about half an hour, but of course please feel free to allow more time if you’d like, especially if you are considering going to a different location.
Yes rain, well we are in the UK. If it rains on your day don’t worry, embrace it, have brollies at the ready and I’ll have a wet weather photography contingency plan in place.
If you have any surprises planned in the day such as cars to and from your ceremony, confetti cannons, sparklers, fireworks, or even special guests, please keep me in the loop so I can be sure not to miss them.
Nobody likes their photo being taken when they are eating, during your meal this is the time I’ll put my cameras down and also eat. I always come prepared with on the go snacks for myself, but food from your caterers is always very much appreciated.
Most importantly on the day… ignore me
Remember to ignore me and focus on your family and friends, the best photos are when you forget I’m there.
I hope these points are helpful. A bit of forward planning, really does help create a smooth flowing day with more authentic moments.