I get asked this many, many times by couples so I thought I’d just share my experiences with you! The simple answer is “as soon as you can” .i.e. when you get your date.
If I average out my booking times it comes in at at least 18 months. I’ve just taken two bookings for 2020! It seems a bit crazy but there are very good reasons to book “asap”. The key reason is to get the photographer you want. After the cake and the confetti have been eaten and swept away, your photos and your album will become your way back into that day. That’s it; one shot at it. You need to trust your photographer and I have to say those you can do book further in advance. The next reason is to fix the price. Prices may go up as styles and products develop, so getting your photography sorted a year out or more means you get the current prices.
Another snippet of advise is to check you day and see if it’s a special date. I wont be with you on Christmas Day but days like New Year’s Eve, Bank Holiday weekends and of course the middle summer months are very popular. Even days that have a ring to them. I’ve had double figures in inquiries for 18/08/2018. Maybe it’s just a coincidence but it just has that ring to it! (forgive the pun).
No matter what supplier book a meeting before you get your date, or at least get in touch with a them so they know you’re around. See what their diary is like. I’ll happily meet couples and then let them decide in their own time.
So, I’ll leave you to google “when should I book my photographer”. This post is not about you booking with me but I’m always gutted when I meet folk and they come back to me a few weeks later and the date is gone.
Oh……and the photo is of Stuart (on the left). He’s the father of LeAnn, the bride (on the right). Stu was very organised and got it all sorted and booked way in advance. Not sure here whether he’s laughing or crying. Either way I know he was glad he’d made LeAnn very happy..
I’m really into colours and colour combinations and always love the different choices that people make for their wedding palettes. I’ve written articles before on how colours go together well but never really about how they’re found. Well, I think maybe they are something you just know or stumble across. I was out for a family hike and amongst much grasping and grappling I found this on a summer’s mountain side.
How beautiful! A patch where the moss and rock met the lovely shades of pinkish purple heathers, green ferns and oranges just illumated by the sunlight. It all fitted; naturally..
Rather than choose colours you think may work if you look to nature then you can find perfect colours that create palettes for the perfect day!
It’s International Women’s Day and there are some amazing female wedding photographers who inspire me and others and for whom I have the upmost admiration for. Here are a few photographers who, like me, are part of the Fearless wedding photographers group. Striving to bring to the world a forward thinking philosophy where great photography meets the true nature and energy of a couples’ day, these women are truly talented. Thank you for the beautiful, the quirky, the unique, the vision and the love!
Radhika Pandit – India
Sabina Mladi – Romania
Julia Frantova – Russia
Isabelle Hattink – Netherlands
Elisha Stewart – Canada
Citlalli Rico- Mexico
Danette Pascarella – USA
Beena Shah – Kenya
Christelle Rall – South Africa
Paula Boto – Spain
Andrea Giraldo – Morocco
Maira Erlich – Brazil
Erika Mann – Canada
Cati Schmidt – Germany
Donatella Barbera – Italy
Not only is my birthday at the start of autumn, which makes it pretty good, but we turn over gradually to autumnal light. There maybe more hours of light in the summer but autumn sees the start of sun stay lower in the sky for longer, so it’s dreamy light to shoot into. Mix that with some beautiful people and palettes and you have some sumptuous images and memories.
So, whilst tucking into a cinnamon and raisin bagel (any excuse), I thought I’d share some post-summer people, pictures and palettes with you. So below are three of my weddings from autumn just gone, all with a slightly different twist for you to compare. Then there are some palette cards to have a look at to see what might work for you.
First up was Lorna and Paul’s day at the end of October. Plenty of pumpkins and lots of love and warm reds and oranges! Classic, punchy and full of lots of lovely stuff.
Then there’s Sarah and John’s day on Halloween all with a gothic twist. Sarah’s palette had less orange than Lorna’s and was deeper in red. She then went into the blacks with a Tim Burtonesque touch. In the autumnal light the darker side to the palette still works like magic with the natural colours in the late October sun. So distinctive but still with a soft, sumptuous feel. So, take a look at these palettes before we go to the last wedding. Take three key colours close together and then try to use a contrasting colour of the same tone. So you can see that even though you might have three warm colours such as orange, red and brown they can all be set of by a blue or grey of the same tone – or weight. So Lorna’s has a blue thistle and the blue of Paul’s suit and Sarah’s has more a charcoal grey to black. After these we go into late winter light which is even softer. Have a look at the palettes and then have a look at Sophie’s palette for early December at the end. The colours start to reverse the first two palettes with purples, blues and grey that is then accented by the warmer pink. So gorgeous!
So here’s Sophie and Lawrence’s wedding at the beginning of December (still technically autumn!) and she has a really soft palette which the soft light of early December has really picked up. It can work as a really warm palette and be set off visually with a warmer vintage colouring, or, it can work with blue – like the suit of the very dapper Lawrence – to give the whole palette a soft yet cooler feel. The cool neutral sky with the shot of the girls in their gorgeous outfits also compliments the warmer palette and sets it off beautifully (plus the girls were totally warm and lovely too!)If you’d like to chat palette’s just drop me a line. I’d love to know what you’re planning and I’d be happy to help. Don’t forget to see all the weddings above in full. Check them out on these links and you’ll get the sense of the colours that set the day off.
Just love autumn!
It’s wedding fair and booking season at the moment and the most common conversation I have with couples is around ‘a natural’ style. When asked ‘how would you like your wedding photography to be?” this is the most common response; and that sounds spot on to me. A natural style, though, doesn’t mean to say it all has to be pure documentary. It’s often about a mix of spontaneous story telling shots, beautiful yet simple portraits and some family photos with the folks. It’s the approach that allows the day, or the story, to flow naturally. That’s the key to a natural look and feel. Natural photography allows the day to breathe and is about the couple’s wishes and wants and everyone on the day and is not about the photography itself.
Rather than a formulaic, some would say cheesy approach (“photographer decides you must have photos of this, like this and in this way because it’s supposed to be trendy”) it is more about a response to people. People are at the heart of my photography and I’m in the company of people that, apart from the bride and groom, I have usually met for the first time. It’s that chemistry that will give the natural, spontaneous photo that will be unlike any other whether planned or totally unplanned. It’s the people that dictate the photo and not the other way around.
Here’s a few photos that I love for these reasons and why.
Natural is to plan the unplanned. Then people do the rest. Good old Stuart, father of lovely LeAnn, the bride. LeAnn wanted some shots alone with Luke and dad, Stuart, was very chipper and was hanging around. He was having a great time but rather than get the ushers to cart him off you just had to roll with it and this is one of my favourites. He said of it after, “I can’t remember whether I was laughing or crying”. It’s both for me when I look at this, Stu. Completely unplanned.
Gorgeous yet simple portraits. This simple set of photos of Sophie & Lawrence took a few minutes. They just had a few moments to themselves and pretty much forgot I was there. At a nice distance – intimate and private yet a full portrait style – I just let them do their thing and be themselves. The shot of Sally felt so natural to in the way it happened. I was a little way away while she had a moment to herself. She just looked down unprompted. Beautiful.
Special and personal moments. If there’s an idea for a photo or special shot wanted then so be it. Ian’s father had passed before the wedding so he and Kristina wanted to recreate his parents’ old wedding photo with his father’s motorbike. A big biking family, the bike was brought unbeknown to Ian’s mum. So he wanted me to capture the unveiling of the bike, Marie’s reaction to the photo and then recreate the shot. So down to the lake we went. That story then unfolded in it’s own way and we did the shot. Very emotional and beautiful. Back inside before the ceremony Ian’s dad’s jacket hugs the back of his chair and then forward to the emotion of the speeches. Whatever makes the day special and personal to people, photography is always second to that.
..And then there’s photos of the folks. The ‘formal’ group shots with dads, mums, mates and bridesmaids. Most people like to have some of these photos; mums like them very much….! But rather than shoehorn a templated list of all the combinations possible to be done in as little time as possible, the photography should allow them to happen naturally through the day and be relaxed, simple and unfussy. Groups come together naturally, so just let that happen with little prompting. More often that not, when people come together for a photo then it’s the unprompted reactions, that if allowed to flow in a fun and informal way, will be the shot people love. In fact this takes less time, is more relaxed and it feels a whole lot easier. I asked Mike what he wanted and he said, “it’s just about me having a crack with the lads” – and so it was.
So in reality the day is more of a mix of wants, wishes and possibilities; a blend of planned and unplanned elements and with a natural approach to photography that is spontaneous even if it needs a little bit of thought and attention beforehand. So as much as a natural style is about the look of the photos, it is as much about a way of photographing and letting the day unfold itself. And then you always have room for the unexpected…
I’m so chuffed to announce that I’m now a Fearless Photographer. Fearlessphotographers.com is a directory of the best 3000 wedding photographers in the world! I’ve longed to be part of this community of well respected artists. A massive THANK YOU to the wonderful couples and families that I’ve photographed up until now, without you it would not have been possible. To future couples, I’m even more fired up than ever and hopefully together we can win Fearless awards! If you would like to have a Fearless photographer at your wedding you can download the brochure here or simply get in touch! Below are some of the images that go a little way to show our philosophy; simple, natural and truly about the energy and emotion of people on their finest day and in their finest hour.