Sarah and Nikki Wedding

This week I was pleased to be invited to take the photographs at a friends weddings. It was my first Mrs and Mrs Wedding and also my first Humanist wedding. The wedding was at a quirky pub in Shrewsbury and after an exhausting journey over there it was an absolutely beautiful day with a delightfully personal ceremony that suited the brides completely.

Here are a few of the photos that I took.

I’ve never known a couple to laugh so much, it was a great day and I loved being a part of it. Sarah and Nikki have some lovely friends and it was a privilege to meet them all.

Thankfully the brides are pleased with their photographs I had a text message from Sarah saying that they had been looking at them and crying with joy in the restaurant the night before they flew on their honeymoon!

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Bolton-Tillbrook Wedding

A few weeks ago I had the privilege of photographing the wedding of the new Mr and Mrs Tillbrook at a beautiful setting in Oxfordshire. I had visited them at the end of last year to visit the venue and take a few engagement photographs in order to familiarise myself with the area and to help the couple be comfortable in front of the camera. Just a couple of weeks before the big day the bride asked if I would bring a second photographer to the wedding in order to photograph people arriving at the church and take some of the more candid shots so I arranged to take along a friend that I have worked with previously.

We arrived in Oxfordshire in time to go to the rehearsal at the church and speak to the parish priest about where best to stand. The bride was asking guests not to take photographs during the service – only the official photographers, so we wanted to get the usual shots but also didn’t want to be intrusive and distract from anything that was going on in the church.

The next day, my friend went to the church and I spent some time with the bride.

These area few of the photos I took at the bride’s home.

These are a few of the photos we took at the church.

There were a few formal photographs taken at the church, but most were taken at the reception venue. The bride and groom were a very willing couple and I perhaps took longer doing these than I should have done. There are a few improvements I would like to have made but on the whole I am actually quite proud of these.

The speeches were very good and had the bride and all the guests laughing one minute, crying the next and then laughing again within moments. More guests arrived in the evening and the party went on much later than I could stay up for.

We took so many photos that it has been very hard to select just a few that tell the story of the day. When Tom Arran came to visit us in class he said that he uses short bursts of photographs so that in at least one of them everyone should have their eyes open. I tried this and it is a technique I will use again but it does mean that there are loads of photos to sort through.

I also need to remember to synchronise the times on all cameras so that when I drop them into Lightroom they automatically sort into time order.

I spent a lot of time editing the photographs, not because they needed lots of editing but because I wanted to give all the photographs a uniform romantic look. I started by doing a large batch and then decided that I wasn’t happy with it. I also spent time creatiScreen Shot 2016-05-19 at 13.10.18ng a vintage look but again I didn’t think it really suited the feel of the wedding. In the end I set up presets in Lightroom, one that simply boosted the vibrancy and softened the clarity of the colour photos and another that gave me the black and white settings and a slight vignette that I liked.

I have spent a good 30 hours editing the photos just this week and I shall need to build that editing time into the fee that I charge for future weddings.

The bride was impatient for the photos so I have used WeTransfer to send her copies. Feedback has been very positive so I can breathe a sigh of relief. I have been unable to afford to keep my Smugmug account this year so I have also uploaded the best of the photos to a Photobox free gallery that she can use to share and order prints with friends and family. Since doing that I have also come across 3XM which is a kind of pay-as-you-go service for photographers. As a trial I have uploaded a few photos onto a gallery there and will perhaps use this for my next wedding in a couple months time.

Mr and Mrs Marwood

Last week I had the pleasure of photographing the wedding of the new Mr and Mrs Marwood. It was a small registry office wedding surrounded by friends and family.

I began at the brides home, followed her to the registry office and then continued on to the reception venue. We took the ‘official photos’ outside but it was a bitterly cold day and I had to work very quickly so that the wedding party didn’t freeze.

It was a lovely day and I have included here a few of my favourite photographs of the day.

Thankfully Mr and Mrs Marwood are very happy with their photos.

Bolton Tillbook Engagement Photo Shoot

This week I travelled down to Oxfordshire to take some photos of Hannah and Mike before their wedding next spring. After a lovely morning visiting the church and the reception venue we headed over to Wittenham Clumps to practice some poses that we might use in the wedding photographs.

The couple had some ideas of poses that they wanted to try and chose the location as one that was sentimental to them. It had been a sunny morning but as we climbed the hill it became quite overcast, windy and very chilly. So I needed to work quickly in order to get us back into the car to warm up.

All of the photos from the shoot can be seen via my website www.ajrweddings.uk/featured-portraits

Destroyed

Following on from the emotional portraits I took at a friends hen party, I printed the photos out in black and white and had them ready at the wedding. During the reception I asked each of the hens to destroy the photos by writing over them, draw on them or even colouring them in.

These are the final results. I think they are great and more importantly, so does the bride!

Wedding Recommitment

A few weeks ago I was asked to take photographs at a wedding recommitment service at a local church.

The brief was to take a portrait photograph of each of the seven couples so that the church could present each couple with a framed memento of the day.

I visited the church a week or so beforehand to check out the room and finalise details with the team there. It was agreed that I would take a couple of studio lights and a backdrop that hid the orange wallpaper in the room. I was to arrive and set up anytime before the service started at 10.00.

On the day, I arrived at the church at 8.30 and began to set up. I was shortly after advised that the couples were beginning to arrive and as there wouldn’t be much time after the service, would I take photographs before the service started. I was also told that I had free reign to wander around the church and take photographs during the service – I took that to mean that they would like informal photos of the service as well as the portraits!

When the couples arrived, so did their families and I was asked to include children and grandchildren in the portraits too. This caused a problem because the background I had brought was only really wide enough for two people. I photographed smaller groups where I could and explained the situation to those families that insisted that I photograph a larger group.

I had some trouble avoiding the very bright spotlights in the church but in the end I managed to capture the photographs that the church wanted, most of what the family wanted and get some nice informal photos of the service.