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Monday, 29 April 2013

Matt & Fi's Merton College Wedding

I don't think that Fi would argue that the word 'serendipity' is a suitable one when explaining how I came to be shooting this lovely wedding at the beginning of April.  Fi is something of a wordsmith so will already know the definition of serendipity:  a "happy accident" or "pleasant surprise"; specifically, the accident of finding something good or useful while not specifically searching for it.

I was exhibiting at Blenheim Palace Wedding Fair and Fi was having a wander with her mum.  As she passed the stand one of my wedding albums caught her eye and she couldn't resist finding out which Oxford College was in the imagery.  We began to chat and have both since admitted to liking each other immediately.  In theory she wasn't looking for a wedding photographer but ended up finding one. 

I am photographing more and more weddings in Oxford and loving every minute of it.  It's a hard backdrop to beat.   Fi got ready at The Old Bank Hotel and Matt at The Old Parsonage and due to Oxford being easier to navigate on foot I just walked between the two.  The ceremony was at Fi's old college chapel (Merton) and their reception was at Gees Restaurant. 

It was FREEZING but absolutely beautiful.  Strong, contrasty, creative light that I love. A day full of love and laughter - a wedding you would like to be a guest at.  I found myself grinning throughout the vows and there is an image below of Fi, with the cutest of smiles, shot during a prayer and right after the vows that sums up the mood.

Much thought and effort had gone into the details and many family members had contributed - whether to the stationery, the wonderful jars of jam or the handmade clutch and hair piece 'made with love by Lyndsay' (Fi's mother).

The flowers were stunning and created by Joanna Carter.  Thanks also to Jade Osborne who assisted me on the day.

So here's to happy accidents Fi and Matt.  It was a pleasure from start to finish. xx


Wednesday, 10 April 2013

From Sunny Melbourne to Snowy London

A few weeks ago I received a lovely email from Katherine in Melbourne.  Her and her husband, Luke, were coming to Europe on holiday and wanted a shoot in London during their stay.

We got to know each other a little on email and discussed the kind of imagery they were after.  They reminded me of some of my closest friends and I was really looking forward to spending the afternoon with them.

On the 17th March I wrote to them saying "My favourite light is contrasty so let’s pray for some bright weather – who knows what we will get as it has been snowing here again!".  Not for one minute did I think it would be snowing on April 4th with a bitter wind of -2 degrees real feel.

The snow started as a little flurry and whilst we had a cup of tea at their flat in South Kensington it got heavier and heavier.  As a photographer who shoots largely on location I have learnt to deal with weather - but here we had a bitter wind and snow - this wasn't what any of us had had in mind for the shoot.

But shoot we did.  Starting at the flat - inside and out - and actually resulting in some gorgeous portraits of them.  I realised very quickly that they love each other deeply and there was very little directing required - more a matter of looking for interesting backdrops, angles, reflections etc.

After taking some images in the streets of South Kensington we tubed up to Notting Hill.  Where we got a royal telling off from a batty old lady.  Luckily a lovely cafe owner more than made up for this by letting me take photos inside and outside whilst they enjoyed a glass of vino.

Then we cabbed to Parliament Square for the more touristy angle.  We attempted to walk onto Westminster Bridge but were hit by gale force (Siberian) winds.  As a result we headed to the river and found a lovely spot with the Eye in the background.

Thank you Katherine and Luke (and Google) for booking me from the other side of the World.  I hope we will meet again in warmer times! x


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