Every wedding, like yours I know, will bring it’s own people and personalities and it’s own moments. Not necessarily those expected shots but those that just come together in their own way. These are the gems that are found in the day and there are always more than a few; that’s what I look forward to finding. So I thought I’d share some with you from 2015! 15 of them for now. Just cannot wait to find more in 2016. The best photos are the ones you’ll never think of before they happen..
Karen & Geoff’s Wedding: Out on the hillside for a Tipi wedding. Then the rainbow appears in between the clouds and the rain and we are there. Never planned and just how it should be!
Tracey and Andy’s Wedding: Tracey left individual, personal notes for all of her guests on the table. There was a beautiful silence as everyone read them all at the same time. So touching and none more so than seeing the tears appear soon after.
Fran and Simon’s Wedding: All the way down in sunny Torquay you find a brilliant couple, an artist on the beach and a view from a bridge. It says it all!
Lyndsay & Marcus’s Wedding: Like no other ceremony I’ll be at. If the ring doesn’t want to go on then just give it some welly. Welly and more at this wedding. I love them for all of their moments that day..
Rachel & Paul’s Wedding: Chinese Lanterns. The brilliant day that was carried it’s on sad byline. A family loss before the wedding was saluted by a beautiful send off on one of the very last frames of the day.
Jenna & Matthew’s Wedding: Who goes to their reception on a tractor? In the very ordinary scene of the pub on a road with parked cars…along drives Jenna & Matthew, the newly weds.
Stacey & Mathew’s Wedding: A quirky shot in some ways but the real story behind this was that Mathew was almost killed by the Taliban on duty in Afghanistan. Paying tribute to his mum and dad at the speeches, it wasn’t just his parents that felt the emotion.
Sophie & Lawrence: We’d planned a shoot before the wedding which we had to cancel again and again to disappointment all round. But then the chance came and we went to the Cow & Calf in Ilkley. A there opened up a theatre of light! The stage is set for next year!
Cheryl & Dave’s Wedding: I say!! There’s no need for that young lady! I’m just doing my job……. purely innocent I’m sure
Emma & Stuart’s Wedding: Just a wonderful moment as the sun fell on Emma and Stu’s day. A brilliant couple; just laughter from start to finish and he said he didn’t ever make a good photo…
Kerry and Ian: It always feels like an adventure with people when you meet and know you’ll be there for the most special day of their lives. Like an adventure you want to look around and soak up the moments and the times. As Kerry, Ian and I met up for an afternoon out up looms the bridge at Rivington Pike. It just symbolised that journey and passing through into 2016 and toward their day in July..
Gill and Ray’s Wedding: Mum and daughter just before the ceremony.
Ness & Gaz’s Wedding: Haha! Just defined these two. They never stopped laughing all day. So uplifting and beautiful. So just doing a few shots outside the beautiful old church of St Mary’s in Barnoldswick we ended up with this quirky number. I didn’t ask what it meant…
Kerry & Subir’s Wedding: The place. The place where you get married. Sometimes you walk into that place and you can feel and sense things before they happen. Before a soul witnessed the occasion St Wilfred’s church in Grappenhall opened it’s doors.
Karen & Geoff’s Wedding: Wedding days are about friends as much as family in many ways. This photo has behind it a truly wonderful friendship which has it’s own story. A magic moment that only needs the holding of hands to symbolise that story.
Are you between 18-35, female and Australian? No wonder I’ve ended up with so many pictures of selfies!! It’s the Aussies that gave us selfies and we’ve done a pretty good job of taking it on. About 350,000 a week on Facebook! But do you cock your head to your left or your right when you take your selfie…..? Ah, right! Well apparently you always do it to the left side. I prefer the funny side of a selfie at my weddings…like the shot of Dan, Emma and Frankie at Cheryl and Dave’s wedding. The bath! Why not.Well, Instagram may have over 53 million photos with the hashtag #selfie but it doesn’t take much to get a sneaky shot of the bride and groom with the old selfie stick..Everyone one at a wedding becomes a celebrity. I love seeing people being themselves and just, well….celebrating. A selfie orchestrated during the Oscars by host Ellen DeGeneres is the most re-tweeted image ever. She had twelve Oscar celebs on stage including Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Channing Tatum, Bradley Cooper, Kevin Spacey, Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Lupita Nyong’o, Jared Leto and Jennifer Lawrence. The selfie was re-tweeted over 1.8 million times in the first hour!!
Not quite as many pictures as I take at a wedding in an hour but here are a few more of my faves from the my weddings…
Note the guy on the bottom right. He’s me, the photographer, who’s given up on watching the others photo themselves and is just jumping into a bit of the action for himself. Selfies are a mark of being there. Being there for your family and best friends and being there to acknowledge the love and fun. Long may it continue!
The photos that are best are those you never imagine before the day. That for me is truly natural. If that is hard to imagine try forseeing fire engines turning up when the late night party is getting into full swing…Enter Cheryl and Dave. Never before have I heard the hotel staff shout…”Out!”, “Out!” and then, dragging all my kit and knocking over a few tables on the way, you see the firey splinters spitting out of the hotel roof. Well what do you do? Like the wonderful Cheryl and Dave you put your hands up and get on with it. Cue pictures with the firemen and when the blaze was under control it was back in to finish what was a perfect day with a twist of drama. More pictures on the way…..including fireman…but for now it’s hats off to a very cool couple…
I love my destination and multicultural weddings, as the whole wedding transforms into a completely unique adventure. The place, the big build up, the vows and the party all happen in new surroundings. So here are some weddings worldwide to give you a hint of what traditions and attire are out there.
In this photo originally published in the June 1951 issue of National Geographic, women carrying rosaries and prayer beads pause en route to church in St. Wolfgang, Austria, where mothers for 500 years or more have handed down fan-shaped headdresses to the brides of eldest sons. Photograph by Volkmar Wentzel
In traditional Afghan weddings, brides are unveiled and often wear revealing dresses and heavy makeup. At this wedding in Kabul, Afghanistan, the bride wears green, a color associated with prosperity and paradise in Islamic tradition. Her sober expression reflects the fact that marriage is an enormous milestone in an Afghan woman’s life, not just a celebratory event. Photograph by Lynsey Addario
In the High Atlas Mountains of Morocco, Berber brides are dressed for a traditional mass wedding that includes four days of ceremonial rituals. In one, brides purify themselves with water gathered from a river. Photograph by Alexandra Boulat
Relatives and neighbors fete bridegroom Ameen Ararah (in floral head scarf, at center rear), 21, at his wedding in the Old City of Sanaa, Yemen. In a country where nearly half the population lives on $1.45 a day, wedding expenses—which can exceed $5,000—are prohibitive. Many couples now pool resources and marry in groups. Photograph by Stephanie Sinclair
The Wedding Fair season proper has just kicked off again with another brilliant show from The World Bridal Event. I’m always looking to photograph weddings from different cultures so this is a show to be it (as well as seeing Charlotte and Iram…) and this show saw an even more diverse mix of cultures. Britain, Asia and Africa were all represented well in equal measure and this is driving ever more diverse suppliers and exhibitors. It a must see for any brides-to-be, so go over to the World Bridal Event site.
Karen & Geoff’s wedding was a cracker not just because it was local to me and it had it’s own little quirks – who else would have a little front room chair and fireplace in the middle of a field – but because it was Tipi time! My first Tipi wedding and they just transfrom the whole occasion into something fantastically unique.
Enter Jodie and Craig from Sami Tipi! On the morning of the wedding the Tipis were going through their last checks and standing tall and firm ready for the guests – and the gusts. Pextenement Farm, hosting the big day, is up on the tops around Tod but even the wind didn’t move these wonderfully spacious places that just seemingly pop up and provide a magical setting for a wedding party!
Inspired by the Sami People of Lapland and all professionally put together and looked after on the day you suddenly have this new home lit with fairy lights, all your own touches and a magical Alice in Wonderland kind of feel fills the air. The wooden beams, tables and chairs just add to it all plus you can all huddle round the Tipis’ own fire late into the night. There’s a lovely festival feel and vibe that everyone gets into! People spill out to enjoy life in the freedom of the outdoors and the late night summer light.
When I got the shot of Karen just dancing in the shadow of the big tipi you kinda got the sense that you could let loose – and she did!
And then on into the night of dancing. From being out oin the middle of nowhere you can retreat into a really special atmosphere created by the Tipis. Everyone parties together – there’s even space for a band and a dancefloor….not bad if you want to fling your now wife around like Geoff. Good job there was plenty of room…..