Firstly, thank you so much for booking me, every single wedding I have the opportunity to shoot means the world to me, If you haven’t figured out my personality before now then you certainly will after reading this paper.
Secondly, thank you for having patience, If you booked me ages ago and have been waiting for emails or information then thank you for giving me the space to get my head around things whilst I adjust to a bizarre new working year. My first year as an isolated mum of two with a business to run which has been a tad challenging so far this year.
I learnt a hell of a lot when I got married myself in 2015. Yes, I'm still with him, No, nothing changes after you're married and yes, it is a shit load of money for one day, but I wouldn't have changed a single thing, and for those wondering, yes I do regularly look at my wedding photos, especially when I’ve had a crappy day and I just want to be reminded of how happy I can be. I’ve been in your shoes and I was very much a bridezilla, so hopefully I can offer a little advice about how to approach your day and what not to focus all your attention on, even though BRIDES magazine says so!
Hopefully this little paper will offer a few bits of advice so you won’t feel so clueless.
It’s da Bomb!
Smoke bombs and sparklers make for awesome photos and have become more popular than ever. A few words of advice: Sparklers - buy long ones, and buy a blow torch. I personally get a bit worried about Sparklers for a few reasons and would gently advise to reconsider if this is what you're planning. Usually, sparklers have to be done outside and at night time. This often means dragging drunk people off the dance floor to gather outside to handle small hot sticks of fire..... The sparkler shots you see take a good 10-15 minutes to set up too, so it isn’t an easy shot to get, and could be potentially dangerous.. So I’d say sparklers for weddings October onwards to March and then smoke bombs for summer.
Smoke bombs - buy the best, if you’re going to get them, get Enola Gaye. Yes they are expensive, but you’re less likely to blow your hand off. Tip: Buy plastic piping to slot the bomb in so you can hold them safely. Please also inform me if you are planning of having these at your wedding, they require special set ups so I need to be aware. You should also check with your venue if they allow these.
** Please also be aware I take no responsibility for injury to yourselves or guests. Photography insurance does NOT cover explosives. I can send a link to recommended smoke bombs but I cannot under any circumstances purchase them for you.
If you want an awesome confetti shot, then you need a lot of confetti...
Seriously, If you want a decent confetti shot you will have to provide the stuff. Too many times I’ve seen couples rely on guests to crack open the Clinton cards tissue paper confetti horseshoes and it looks, not right (to avoid saying shit). Yes I know it costs more money but here’s a simple tip.... Start collecting the petals off all the flowers your other half gives you (in my case I had to buy the flowers myself because Robin doesn’t do romantic) or do what I did and pick blossoms in the spring, dry them out and use them. Free and easy. Want a confetti shot like this... you need a shit load of confetti! Have a look at Dollz Confetti, a good 8-10 litres will do the job for sure.
Whaaaaat??? Me??? Never!
C’mon we all know your other half will absolutely love this, and no, I do not do cringe/ porno/rubbish/too much!
Just a bit of sass and I mean, the ice will definitely be broken before the big day right!?!
Pre wedding shoot
- Revenge rate!
Groom threatens bride because he’s had enough of “bullshit photos” and just wants to get drunk.
Yes people dread having their phots taken, usually blokes. Pre Shoots are important, some people don’t want them, others do. I’m not judging. It’s important to feel comfortable in front of the camera and waiting until your wedding day to do that can be a risk. I did have a pre shoot with my photographer, even if it meant more money and I still had more useless crap to buy!. I am so glad i did. Had photos and even a spritz with her and we got to the wedding prepared.
A pre shoot is there for two reasons, for you to experience having your photo taken by me and obviously see the end edited result, and for me to understand how you are in front of the camera. Some people are shy, some know how to work it. I will never force a couple to do uncomfortable things if they are not keen, but for me to understand what those boundaries are, I need to find out for myself.
To arrange your pre wedding shoot please get in contact and let’s try and book it in at least 8-10 weeks before your big day.
Pre Shoot Help:
What to wear, first and foremost, something comfy. I will most likely have you walking or flinging each other over shoulders and running around a park. Wear something that you feel confident in, there's nothing worse ladies than fiddling with bras and waistbands and blokes grabbing their crotches because wifey for lifey bought him special pants. Wear clothes that compliment each other, nothing too bright, or patterned and branded - bluergh, you ain't modelling for JD Sports guys! Ladies, I always advise you to get your make- up trial done on the morning of your pre shoot, so that you have a better idea of what your photos will come out like. How you look in the mirror and how the final photographs look are two very different things.
A combination of lighting, editing techniques and angles will change your appearance
Next, how to use your images...
Many of my couples print a few of their images and either use them for invitations if they have it early enough, signing frames, table plans and decor.
You’ll get an online gallery with as many images as I can squeeze in for you to use as you wish. Simply add them to the shopping basket directly on your gallery or download them for free and print from your phone or download them to your desktop/tablet and save to a USB. It’s pretty simple.
People often say that my photographs look natural, which is good, I would hate you to look at your photographs and think “that’s lovely, but the photographer told me to do it, it simply isn't us.” Here are a few ideas of naturally posed photos.
Ideas on unposed posing... Butt squeezes, Hand holds, Face touching, Snogging, waist grabbing, bear hugs, Tickling and laughing all work a treat.
IT’S ALL IN THE DETAILS
I like details... I like details more than I like people. So please give me a lot of details to photo. Shoes, flowers, rings, jewellery, dresses, important shit.... the more the merrier, keeps me out of trouble and stops me capturing nipples and bums! Just try to think of the things that will get chucked away after your wedding. These are the things you need photographing to remember.
What a load of crap.... Group shots can be the most painful things ever. All your guests want to do is take advantage of the bar and do not want to be dragged into shots, but you’ll regret not having them.
I don’t particularly like them either, they are a pain in the ass to organise, for at least 10 minutes of the day, every guests hates me. It’s too cold, too warm, too crowded and too long to spend hanging around for some bossy woman to snap a photo that Uncle bob can probably do in a quarter of the time on his iPhone 6.
Well, as much as I hate them, I'm so so grateful for them. When I have a crappy day the first thing I do is open my Wedding photo book, I sift through the pages and I find the group shots, they felt like forever when they were being taken but I'm forever grateful of those faces now in print. I'm so glad I have those photos!
So the point is, yes they are a pain to stand through but they are important, maybe not on the day, maybe not in ten years time but when your children’s children get married and you’re no longer around they will have a photo. They are important. They do need documenting, even if it's just immediate family. I do say to limit group shots to 8 - 10 because of time restrictions. I cannot guarantee that I will take a photo of every guest. Some guests dodge me, others shout at me, it’s all part of the job. If there is somebody who you really want me to focus on, a grandparent, special friend or guests then please tell me on the day, point them out and I’ll make sure I stalk them.
A few weeks before the wedding I will send you a list that you will have to fill in and send back to me in which you will write who and which group shots you would like on the day.
So group shots are important BUT in my opinion, not as important as natural candid shots of special people being themselves on your wedding day. It’s those moments, when they don’t know I'm watching them that you will look at and say - “Yeah, that’s my dad right there, that’s his laugh, his dodgy lazy eye” Not the ones where he's stood to attention with a bunch of folk.
So remember, group shots are important but they do take time.
Best thing we did at our wedding. (We did lots of cool things, but this was one of my favourite). There’s nothing quite as special as the guest who takes selfies while you’re saying your vows. That’s why you planned the entire event, right? Obviously, your wedding is just an elaborate selfie backdrop. KIDDING. So, here’s a sign that should stop that sort of smartphone dumb antics in their tracks.
No but for real, imagine yourself there, now, would you rather:
a- see everyone holding their phone and pointing it at you and probably sharing those images on Face-ache two seconds later
b- see the faces of your loved ones, spot the auntie crying, see their first reactions..
I'm not one to judge, I like a drink, but what I like more is photographing drunk people. It’s hilarious, you’ll forget, they’ll forget, but photographs of proof will always be there. On a serious note, get as pissed as you like, it makes my job so much more fun, but from one bride to another.... I forgot major parts of my day because I was shit faced. Oh, but be aware, when doing the mates groups shots I do tend to encourage shot buying.... Sorry!