Upwaltham Barns June Wedding

Upwaltham Barns in June
Stacey & Shane

Upwaltham Barns June Wedding

As it’s -7 out there right now I thought I’d show you Stacey and Shane’s wedding from the final day of June last year at Upwaltham Barns to reassure you that this cold is temporary and there is much better weather to come.

On the day we had clear blue skies and it marked the beginning of the summer heatwave that ended a month later. When it finally broke and the heavens opened I was shooting a wedding on a boat in London getting very wet.

But that’s another story, for another time.

So here we have the lovely Stacey and Shane, their day started apart with Stacey at Rubens Barn getting ready with her maids and for Shane, Benges Cottage 10 minutes away. It’s amazing just how many different places I’ve seen around Petworth that couples get ready in. You think it’s all fields but there’s lots of little places to stay dotted everywhere.

Upwaltham Barns Wedding Photographer

This wedding was a biggie with 145 guests spread around the grounds. There were garden games, the Moroccon snug provided extra shade to compliment the trees all the while a steel drummer was playing upbeat ambience to keep everyones tempo high.

Because of the heat we deferred most of the couple shots until after dinner as the lazy summer sun didn’t seem to be going anywhere and it also bought them more time with their guests. It was a more relaxed time of day too.

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Wedding at the Gherkin London

The Gherkin, London
Laura & David

Weddings at the Gherkin, London

I love London weddings. Logistics can sometimes be a headache but from a creative standpoint (and once you’re there) you can find things, shapes, colours and perspectives which you can’t anywhere else and the contrast between country weddings is huge and something I love to embrace.

This is Laura and David’s wedding at The Gherkin. This was a top o’ the skyscraper gig with the view of London all around us on a crystal clear September day.

I started with a brief visit to Laura and her family at the Ned by way of Threadneedle Street before heading to see David and the groomsmen at the Slug and Lettuce opposing 30 St Mary Axe / The Gherkin.

Gherkin London Ceremony area

This was my first time at the Gherkin and I was taken by the sheer scale of the tower up close; I loved all the clean lines and glass. It allowed me to see in a different way while shooting.

We were at the very top of the tower and you need to switch lifts near the top to do the final leg up. Once there, you’ll find two levels accessible by stairs. The very top being for the ceremony and dancing with the lower level acting as the dining room.

Searcy's at the Gherkin

After the ceremony we headed down and out for photos and we really didn’t need to go very far at all as there was the imposition of The Gherkin, the neutral greys of the granite beside and enough space for a lovely falloff in to the background.

Dinner was the high standard that’s known from Searcy’s and this lead to some speeches, sunset photos and the evening do.

Some weddings lift your spirits in such a way as to be uniquely memorable and this was one of them. Both on an emotional level as well as the physical, being almost 200 metres up.

Laura and David were a dream to be around, always high spirited and just 100% genuinely lovely. Special thanks goes to Laura’s mum for the G n’ T at 8pm and for the chap who bought me a Guinness early on that made me feel so included. Small gestures of kindness are never forgotten, thank you, wherever you are 😀

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Cain Manor Winter Wedding

Cain Manor
Claudette & Martin’s Winter Wedding

Cain Manor Wedding December

Here is Claudette and Martin’s wedding at Cain Manor. Their smart black tie wedding suited the season perfectly as did the venue. They were really keen to have fairy lights and candles all around during their ceremony and this really added to the ambience and seasonal feel so close the Christmas.

Their gold and glass tableware, the calligraphy and general decor showed they really considered the wedding at every level. Their gorgeous geometric / gatsby / deco cake and supporting candies which were so pretty the guests held off eating them!

But a wedding is only a shell without a great supporting cast. All the family, bridesmaids and groomsmen were high spirited, full of energy and were there to party. Nothing was going to get in the way of a good time today.

I had a lot of fun with them too, even when the light left us mid afternoon we still found fun with some LED lights either I had or the guests had on their phones. There’s always a way to get great stuff at a wedding, even in the winter and even in the dark!

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Cripps Barn
Claire & Josh

There are certain weddings I’ve shot where I’ve felt I was always meant to be the photographer. With Claire and Josh I first met them at the Cripps Barn open day, they were being surreally walked around the barn virtually via Skype (they live in Australia) and in an odd co-incidence Claire used to be the wedding co-ordinator at another venue and recognised me. The deal was sealed right there!

And what a stroke of luck it was as their non stop, fast paced and massively fun wedding was a dream to shoot. Their day was in mid August and both of them got ready, along with their suporting cast at the Kings Head in Cirencester.

No stops were pulled in the decor of the barn (more photos below) and what really made the day shine was how carefree and full of fun everyone was. There were twists and turns along the way, Josh’s mum had arranged some singing waiters for them and nobody knew a thing about it. Usually the couple book them, so with Mum’s intervention the genuine surprise on their faces was perfect to witness and everyone got up and danced around the dinner tables.

Claire and Josh have this magnetism between them, always together, but still able to see evereyone else. Josh’s brothers were the groomsmen and the ‘Clements boys’ were great to have on hand for photos. In the evening there was a power cut due to a dodgy letter ‘E’ on an illuminated sign and during the gap between the generator spinning up the band went Acoustic, we all held up candles and carried on partying regardless.

Weddings like these remind me why I shoot. Genuine love across families, fun seeking personalities, free flowing tears and a couple who glue it all together make for a perfect day.

Here’s some more photos from their wedding:

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Aynhoe Park Wedding Venue Photos

Aynhoe Park
Bel & Victor

Aynhoe Park Wedding Ceremony

In early October I was fortunate enough to be shooting Bel and Victors wedding at Aynhoe Park near Banbury. If you’ve never heard of Aynhoe it’s a wedding venue turned up to 11 with an eclectic mix of decor throughout. On arrival a unicorn on a piano greets you and it just sprials on from there. It certainly has the wow factor. If you were have a wedding in the home and toy section of Harrods this is what it would be like, kinda.

It was important to Bel and Victor that they had someone there for the whole day as the evening photos were very important to them (a couple of their friends are DJ’s). I started at 10am with clay pigeon shooting before prep kicked off in advance of the ceremony due at 3, but I finished at 1.30am. It was a great run and a lot of fun!

Places for family formals at Aynhoe Park

As Victor is Canadian and Bel from Brazil the ceremony wasn’t your standard UK one, a lot of people took it in turns to give readings full of emotion and connectivity before Bel and Victor promised themselves to each other. Victor also loves the Sax so Bel had arranged a surpise Sax solo for the end of their ceremony. Due to the time of year we did the family photos in the main conservatory area and these worked out really, really well. (It was a bit windy for outside).

Their guests enjoyed dinner with a short speech being deferred to after the first dance and the evening took off straight after. The dancefloor was busy all night with the music being the best I’ve heard at a wedding thanks to two DJ’s cranking out the beats, lifting the roof of Aynhoe Park. Top marks.

Aynhoe Park Dancefloor

You can see many more images from the day below but first here is a list of the suppliers coming together and helping the day run so smoothly:

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Canon EOS R Review for Wedding Photography

The Canon EOS R Mirrorless Camera Wedding Photography Review
Part 1 – First Impressions

The Canon EOS R Review

*Canon EOS R Review Update 12th Feb 2019* – New firmware is out (v1.1.0) and this impacts some of my comments

Support for continuous shooting / burst mode in silent shutter
Corrects a phenomenon in which an error may occur if there is a large number of files in a specific format on the memory card.
Corrects a phenomenon in which an error may occur when silent shutter has been enabled.
Corrects a phenomenon in which horizontal linear noise may occur when using specific lenses together with certain recording image quality settings.
Corrects a phenomenon in which the information displayed in the viewfinder may become abnormal.

The Canon EOS R Review

 

Usually within a week of getting a camera that’s evolutionary or revolutionary for the system it’s contained within I’m there with my credit card and within a week I do a blog post singing it’s praises for being the greatest thing everrrr. I usually know when I see the specs that it’ll be a camera I love, enjoy and it’ll change my photography in a positive way.

The Canon EOS R camera though, that was a different experience. Three things held me back, the lack of a joystick and the single card slot. I just couldn’t see it elegantly fitting in with my current setup (2 x 5D4’s). Thirdly the general downplay by youtubers who weren’t really using it in a way that I would, which is weddings and portraiture.

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Swallows Nest Barn

One from the weekend – The ‘Pinwheel of colour’
Ali & Alex at Swallows Nest Barn

Swallows Nest Barn Wedding

It’s been a bit of a crazy few days with weddings in Essex, Warwick and yesterday, on a boat in central London. But, this is July and this is how weddings do. The weddings themselves aren’t overly tiring (although Fridays heat was something else) but the mountain of editing they bring means I won’t have any free time until November.

About this shot – So this is Ali and Alex at Swallows Nest Barn in Warwick on Saturday. The weather was changeable and a welcome break from the heatwave we’ve had these last couple of months. I call this shot the pinwheel of colour because the low sun and stormy clouds above gave us a magenta / blue cascade that visually moved in a clockwise motion to the green field, completing with the dried out field Ali was in. Their placement was deliberate to get give good contrast with his suit and Ali blew a raspberry at Alex without any direction from me. 😀

Woodhill Hall Wedding Photo

Woodhill Hall Early Preview
Siobhan & Robin

Sparkler photo at Woodhill Hall

Here is an early preview of Siobhan and Robins’ wedding at Woodhill Hall near Newcastle. I shoot weddings all over but I’m not usually this far up North, but it’s so worth the trip for the rolling countryside and laid back feel of the area. Everyone is so nice!

As this is an early preview I’ll write up their wedding in the coming months, but the venue itself, wow. A detached Georgian manor hour, uniquely decorated with its own prop hut so you can set the decor how you like it, lots of surrounding woodland, two day exclusive use, a fixed tipi on site…the place is crazy and for me, it was a world of photographic opportunity that I’m unable to compare it to.

Wedding party group photo at Woodhill HallWedding photo in the woods at Woodhill HallThe Dancfloor inside the Tipi at Woodhill Hall

Syon Park
Emma & Oli

Syon Park WeddingHere is Emma and Oli’s summer wedding at Syon Park.

This was a day full of life and ‘London lively’ – These two kept me on my toes all day and I loved Every. Second. Of. It.

I started at the Hilton and jumped between both of them during prep with Oli and his bestie riding their motorcycles to the ceremony inside the Great Hall while Emma arrived by car.

The Great hall is unlike anywhere I’ve attended before and the statues, along with the black and white flooring, were a beautiful sight to see when I got there.

 

After their ceremony we milled around the garden for a bit before heading over to the Great Conservatory via the Queens Walk where the rest of the drinks, photos and dinner service took place.

The Great Conservatory is huge and awe inspiring to look at from any angle; a perfect setting for a summer wedding with guests exploring the grounds at will.

But, as nice as the grounds were unless you fill it with the right people you’ve only 50% of a wedding. Their outrageous friends who were open, friendly and who wore their hearts on their sleeves really made this day complete.

From the friendly jibes between the groomsmen during prep to the chilled approach from the brides side through to Emma swigging champage from the bottle this was a perfect wedding for me to shoot.

The guests got smashed at the gin station, Emma and Oli were thrown in to air on the dance floor and I stayed until the end of the night where they had a sparkler send off aka – ‘It’s midnight, everyone is absolutely smashed, lets do a sparklers, what could go wrong’ happened. It was certainly a memorable wedding. As every wedding should be.

It was love and life unfiltered, the absolute best.

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