Why I Love Bridal & Groom Prep

Getting ready bridal prep photos

There’s nothing quite like the hustle and bustle of a wedding morning! There’s a heady mix of excitement and nervous tension as the wedding party prepares for the momentous day ahead – everyone you cherish is there with you. Your Mum, bridesmaids, Best man / men, best friends, siblings – they’re all sharing in your excitement. The makeup artist arrives, and then the hairdresser – the flowers are delivered, and the excitement and anticipation builds.

For me, it’s one of the best parts of the day, and here’s why.

1. Get used to the camera

If you’ve had an engagement session with me then you’ll know what to expect, but if you haven’t – bridal prep is a fantastic way to see how I work. Of course, you’ll be too busy getting ready to notice what I’m doing, but it’s a brilliant opportunity for us to get to know each other a little better, and for you to see how laid back and non-shouty I am!

I find that people are generally self conscious for the first ten minutes following my arrival, but after that? You won’t even notice I’m there, and you’ll wonder why you ever felt awkward in front of the camera.

2. Emotions!

Of course, wedding days are emotionally charged events, and getting ready is packed full of them. The excitement of your bridesmaids. The tears of your bridal party when you step into your dress for the first time, and the look on your father’s face when he sees you for a first look. These are all really important, emotionally charged events that are all too easy to forget.

3. It’s all in the details

For me, weddings are all about moments – the first kiss, the first dance, the way you look at your other half during the ceremony…but let’s not forget your beautiful dress, shoes, and jewellery that may have been passed down from generation to generation. These are all important elements of your day, and bridal prep is an ideal time to photograph these things in a creative way that just won’t be possible later in the day.

4. Telling a story

Finally, your wedding isn’t just about walking down the aisle, or the speeches, or the first dance…getting ready photos are an important part of the day for the reasons outlined above, and as such should be photographed to complete your wedding day story.

Hints & Tips!

  • If you’d like getting ready photos, plan your timeline accordingly. I like to allow a good two hours to capture everything I need – this gives me time to say hello to everyone, photograph hair, makeup and details, and then leave in good time for the ceremony
  • Also, if you and your partner would both like getting ready photos, you may need a second photographer depending on location and timings
  • Speaking about location – how large is the room you’ll be getting ready in? If it’s a small hotel room and there are 15 bridesmaids getting ready with you, then a rethink may be needed.
  • Make sure clutter is kept to a minimum. Of course, once the Prosecco starts to flow you won’t particularly care, but if you don’t want Jaffa Cake boxes or crisp packets in your photos, make sure they’re deposited of accordingly before I arrive…!
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NEW! Wedding Videography and Photography Package!

Wedding Videography Package

A lot of couples often ask me if I offer videography alongside my wedding photography service. My response has always been, “What, that moving image stuff? Why would you want that? AREN’T PHOTOGRAPHS ENOUGH DAMMIT?!”, before locking myself in a darkened room and weeping gently for twenty minutes or so.

Then it occurred to me like a bolt out of the blue. “Why don’t I team up with someone who understands all this video witchcraft malarkey, and offer a combined photography and videography package?! What a great idea! WE’LL RULE THE WORLD I TELL YOU!!”

So that’s what I did.

I’m absolutely thrilled to announce my partnership with Matt from Matt Roper Films, and as you’ll see from this gorgeous wedding video he clearly knows what he’s doing when it comes to the moving image!

What’s included?


Videography!

  • Full day of shooting alongside Dan
  • Drone footage
  • Highlights Film (approx 3 mins)
  • Extended Highlights Film (approx 5-15 mins)
  • Ceremony Film
  • Speeches Film
  • Full Feature Film

Photography!

  • all day coverage (until late!)
  • around 400 full resolution digital files in an online gallery
  • USB presentation box & 10 prints
  • 25% album credit
  • Tears of joy guaranteed!

For more information about this fab videography and photography package, please click the big shiny button below and drop me a line!

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Best Wedding Photos of 2019

The Old Kent Barn Wedding Photography

What a year it’s been! I’m not normally a gushy person, but I feel this post may contain a certain amount of…well…gush, for want of a better word?!

When I first picked up a camera in anger just over ten years ago, I never dreamed I’d be photographing weddings, visiting so many amazing locations and photographing lots of gorgeous couples. Fast forward a decade and it’s been a year packed full of wonderful wedding moments, some of which are featured below.

Before that, I’d just like to say a few thanks. First (and most) of all, to each and every couple whose wedding I photographed this year. I’m not exaggerating when I say that all of you were utterly brilliant. You made my job much easier – no fuss, no drama, just genuine couples who were all up for relaxing and having a great time on their wedding day. I can’t thank you enough.

Secondly, to all the amazing suppliers and vendors I worked with in 2019. From wedding planners, to hair and makeup artists, to cake makers, florists, videographers, dressmakers…I’ve worked with some insanely talented people over the last 12 months.

Lastly, I’d like to thank my regular assistant Sian. Not only is she a brilliant photographer, she’s also great company and ridiculously easy to get on with. She’s also a calming influence when stressful moments arise, so I’d like to thank her from the bottom of my heart.  A big thanks must go to Terry as well for his help and support this year – cheers fella!

Bring on 2020!

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Stoke By Nayland Hotel Wedding Photography | Louise & Graeme

Stoke by Nayland Essex Wedding Photography

One of the great things about weddings is that you get to spend lots of quality time with family and friends.

In fact, some of them you may not have seen for a long time, possibly years, which makes your wedding day extra special.

At Louise and Graeme’s wedding at the Stoke By Nayland Hotel, Essex, that was especially true for me, because Graeme’s my cousin!

I’m not going to embarrass him by telling tales of how we used to watch Raiders of the Lost Ark as kids, and then attempt to reenact some of the scenes from the film by lashing ourselves to my Auntie’s stair banister with a piece of cord (it’s Indiana Jones’ whip, you see).

Erm, I think I might have said a bit too much there…:)

Anyway, I have loads of other brilliant memories of growing up with Graeme. For example, watching Blazing Saddles and laughing far too hard at the campfire scene. Cheering on Jimmy White while he lost yet another Snooker World Championship to Stephen Hendry. Oh Jimmy, how you broke our hearts. Playing cricket on Frinton Beach. The list literally goes on and on.

So to photograph his wedding to the lovely Louise was indeed a pleasure, an honour and a privilege.

Also, it gave my parents who were also guests lots of opportunity to embarrass me while I was working (I’m joking folks, love you really! ♥️)

So huge congrats to both Louise and Graeme, and here’s to a lifetime of married bliss!

Thanks!

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Christ Church Erith Wedding Photography – Demi & Sean

Christ Church Erith Wedding Photography

There are a few things you must never do when meeting someone who plays rugby:

  1. Say, “Rugby? Nah, football’s more my thing!”
  2. Crack the old gag about rugby being played by men with funny shaped balls, and
  3. Mention anything that may upset them in any way shape or form, because they’re generally fitter, younger and bigger / stronger than you.

When I first met Demi and Sean to chat about their wedding, I thankfully managed to avoid all of those things (phew!) They were absolutely lovely, had just adopted a couple of cats (that automatically makes them wonderful people in my book), and were looking for relaxed, natural wedding photographs. Sorted.

This is the second wedding I’ve photographed at the magnificent Christ Church in Erith, and I’d like to thank Demi & Sean and all their family and friends for being great fun during the day!

Thanks!

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Kristi & Jack Sneak Peek! | Five Oaks Events, West Sussex

Five Oaks Events Sussex Wedding Photography

What a day.

Take one gorgeous couple, one sunny day, two ceremonies (one small, one large, both lovely) and one fantastic wedding venue, stir together with a healthy dose of joy, laughter and love and the end result is Kristi & Jack’s beautiful wedding at Five Oaks Events, West Sussex.

During the bridal prep one of the bridesmaids said, “It’s a long day for you and there’s a lot of work”. To be honest, it doesn’t feel like work when you’re photographing a wedding such as this. Yes, I was up at 6am and didn’t get home until 11am, but to be honest time became insignificant. There was so much going on and so many beautiful moments occurred that I totally lost track of the hours ticking by.

Massive congratulations to Kristi & Jack, and thanks for keeping myself and my assistant Sian thoroughly entertained throughout the day! We both wish you all the happiness in the world, and enjoy your honeymoon!

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Clare & Harry Sneak Peek! | Morden Hall Weddings

Morden Hall Wedding Sneak Peek

There was a lot of swooning going on yesterday, and it wasn’t solely due to the sweltering conditions.

First of all, the venue. Morden Hall Weddings is absolutely stunning – it exudes a sumptuous air of regality which was entirely befitting of Clare & Harry’s gorgeous wedding.

Secondly, as mentioned, it was a blistering day. Luckily Harry and his groomsmen were bedecked in kilts which meant that there was…how can I put this…a certain level of ventilation occurring. Ahem.

Finally, Clare & Harry themselves. Clare looked absolutely breathtaking in her beautiful wedding dress, and Harry extremely dapper in his tartan, sporran and kilt.

I’d like to thank you both for being welcoming, patient, kind and funny throughout the entirety of the day, and I wish you all the happiness in the world for your lives together. Enjoy your honeymoon!

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Gemma & Tom Sneak Peek! | Rowhill Grange Hotel

Rowhill Grange Hotel Sneak Peek

What can you say about Gemma and Tom?

They’re the sort of people who are so open and friendly that they just get on with everyone. A few weeks ago I popped over for a final pre-wedding chat (they live just up the road from me), and we had croissants and coffee in the garden. It felt more like meeting old friends for a cuppa and a chinwag rather than to discuss the finer details of the wedding – that’s how friendly and welcoming they are!

Their wedding reflected that openness and warmth, and we were blessed with wonderful weather as well.

Huge congratulations to you both, and here are some photos from the day – plenty more to come soon 🙂

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Alex & Gary Sneak Peek! | The Talbot, Woking, Surrey

Talbot Inn Woking Wedding Photography

“Out of adversity comes opportunity”

Apparently, Benjamin Franklin once said this. Oh, how I could have done with him being in the passenger seat of my car when the flipping thing wouldn’t start yesterday morning. Roughly around an hour before I was due at Alex & Gary’s wedding at The Talbot in Woking, Surrey, in fact.

So, one rather expensive Uber trip later and I arrived on time. Panic over.

My aim for the day was not only to capture some amazing photographs, but to take advantage of the rain and create one photo in particular that would make all the hassle worthwhile. So later in the day I set up a couple of flashes, and you’ll see the result below. Hopefully it was worth it.

A massive thanks to Alex and Gary for being brilliant company and for allowing me to drag them out into the rain to take the aforementioned photo. You’re both absolutely gorgeous, and I wish you a lifetime of happiness together!

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The Gardens Yalding Kent Wedding | Alex & Alex – Sneak Peek!

The Gardens Yalding Kent Wedding Photography

I consider myself a very lucky boy indeed to be living in Kent – not only do I have access to some of the most beautiful countryside in England, I’m also within touching distance of some of the most stunning wedding venues this land has to offer.

One such venue is The Gardens in Yalding.

I recently photographed Alex & Alex’s gorgeous wedding there, and even though I’m in the middle of editing their photos I couldn’t resist sharing some of these with you already!

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