As an experienced Wedding Photographer, shooting weddings in places like London, Surrey, and the world, I know how much hard work and time is taken to plan a wedding wherever it is. I want your photography experience to be the most relaxed process in your planning.
This is why I’ve created this guide, and I hope you find it’s useful and informative.
Throughout the wedding day, I focus my attention on capturing the genuine and true moments. My photos capture moments & emotions in time. Weddings can be emotional roller coasters (good ones!). I aim to capture your feelings – from the pre-ceremony butterflies and thrill of being pronounced as being married, to the delight at the best man’s speech and romance of your first dance – so you can re-live these emotions again and again.
I have an expert eye for capturing the spontaneous moments – raw, undocumented and unscripted. From the joyous, unbridled laughter to the bitter-sweet smiles as you remember those who couldn’t attend. These ‘in-between’ moments narrate your story, beautifully and uniquely. With so much going on, it’s hard to see the ‘big picture’ of your day. That’s my job. I inconspicuously collect the reactions, gestures, and interactions you don’t see.
• Get ready with your closest friends and family
• Wherever you're getting ready, try to finf a location with beautiful natural light
• Add cushion time to the timeline - to allow for any unexpected things happening
• Have as many bridesmaids as possible ready before you, so they can help and look good in the photos too. However, you also don't want to be last, especially crucial if time is running out to get ready.
• If you want me to shoot you getting into the dress, then it would be fabulous to have your bridesmaids dressed already, and it take place close to a window
• Allow enough time to get photos of getting into your dress bearing in mind I have to leave for the ceremony
• Stuff might go wrong. That’s normal, so don’t stress. No-one will notice
• Take a comfort break before getting into your dress
• Eat a good breakfast. It might be several hours until you sit down to eat
• Relax, have fun and enjoy yourself. It will show in the photos !!! I truly believe this, so have repeated it again!!!
Having photos from this part of the day helps to tell the complete story of your wedding day!
Have trusted family and friends ready for any last minute delegation of tasks. Relax and enjoy the start of the wedding day with your family and friends. The time will fly by.
I normally arrive 2 hours before the ceremony time, to photograph the final touches of the bride having her makeup done. The ideal getting ready space would be light, spacious and free of clutter. Don’t worry if it isn’t spacious or free of clutter.
Having good light makes a big difference to the photos. Ideally, you want to have your make up done where there is natural light falling onto you (and bridesmaids). Do check if the place you are getting ready has natural light.
If it doesn’t (windowless rooms do exist), then consider moving to where there is. If it’s at the venue, there might be another room that has better light. If the groom is getting ready nearby, or at the same venue, then itmight be possible for me to get photos of him and the groomsmen in the final stages of getting ready, such as putting on ties and adding cufflinks.
If the wedding is happening in several locations, then time management becomes even more crucial so that I’m in the right place at the right time, and not stuck in traffic. When the logistics have allowed, I have ridden with the bride and her father on the way to the ceremony several times, and got some amazing photos.
If I need to take my car, especially in urban venues, then I would appreciate knowing if there is car parking available at or near to the venue. As I will have all my photography gear with, the closer the better!
I like to arrive a little earlier than scheduled, so I can hang out with everyone there, and introduce myself and grab a coffee with you.
This way, you will all be more relaxed when I start photographing the natural moments and emotions that happen.
The part of the day why everyone is here. Check beforehand if there are any photography restrictions at the ceremony location, so you are not disappointed afterwards.
Please ask if the officiant in charge of the wedding is happy to have me documenting your vows. I rarely use flash and never in a church, unless given permission to do so. I have been sent to the back of the room before, and in a few cases, a total ban on photos during the ceremony. Please do let me know if there are any special events happening during the ceremony. I have seen pet dogs run up the aisle with the rings. I can be ready to capture these lovely moments.
Be present and enjoy the moments during the ceremony and day. Enjoy the celebratory happy hugs and kisses from the guests. If you plan to have confetti or sparklers then do let me know. With planning we can make sure it is captured perfectly.
The ideal time for Group Photos is either just after the ceremony at the Ceremony venue, if there is space, or at the Reception venue (if it’s different).
Each Group Photo takes between 3-5 minutes, so you might want to keeping this to a minimum if you want to spend the maximum time with your guests.
I keep the posing to a minimal and try to get these classic photos out the way quickly so you can enjoy the celebrations with your guests. It’s always advisable to have designated people to round up the guests for each group to speed it along. Please let the people involved in the Group Photos know when they are required. I once had a dad that went missing for 20 minutes!
Whether you are camera shy or super easy in front of the camera, this part of the day is a great time for you both to get away from all the guests.
I always start by asking my couples to go for a walk together and to spend time together, alone, as a couple. I may use a longer lens and capture the moments as they happen from a distance out of earshot. It’s really up to my couples to decide how much time they want to spend getting some amazing portraits for their walls and for their album.
The Portraits can be broken up to provide different looks through the rest of the wedding day. If there’s an amazing sunset (when the light is golden) and there is beautiful light, I might ask if you’re up for a quick portrait. I’m also very experienced with using flash to create stunning and amazing portraits, whether it’s outside or indoors, dark or not.
I’m always looking for creative, super fun portraits that represent you both, and a little different from other portraits already taken at your reception venue.
Embrace the rain. We can create amazing portraits in nearly any weather condition. The beauty being it will give an additional look to the photos in your album.
It’s time to relax, and celebrate with your guests. After capturing the reception details, I focus on getting candid photos of you and your guests having the time of your lives!!! Make the Reception a reflection of who you are. Add touches to make it unique. One of my couple’s had the best man and his band play live for them. For speeches, think about the backdrop for the photos. Where the speeches will take place. If there are big pieces (usually floral) on the table obscuring you or the speakers.
I like to light my speeches, using flash on a light-stand and on-camera flash. I usually put my cameras down when you’re eating. Who wants to be photographed with a mouthful of food? This is also the perfect time for me to eat.
Weddings are physically and mentally demanding, and I’d appreciate if food is provided so I can recharge too. This way, I will be ready to capture moments for the rest of the day.
The first dance is one of the romantic moments of the wedding reception. Everyone loves watching you as you dance to a song that you love. If you feel stiff and clumsy, then practise dancing to the song before the wedding day. For wedding dresses with a long train, consider bustling it so you don’t trip over it.
Do let me know in advance if there are surprises for either of you, or for the guests. It will allow me to be ready to capture the surprise and not be the surprised !!!