Weddings come in many guises, big, small, intimate, short, and long, however one major way to differentiate is the civil ceremony verses a church wedding service.
As a photographer, (and no doubt the guests!) it is certainly easier to have the whole day take place under one roof so to speak, however there is a certain ‘something’ about a church wedding.
Images of the newly married couple coming out of the church accompanied by church bells is a tradition I for one really enjoy. There are also of course the pictures of the service itself (if the vicar allows them!) nervous brides and grooms, Mums and other relatives shedding a little tear, and all within what is usually a wonderful old building just made for photographs.
In 2017 just over a quarter of weddings in the UK were held in a church or other religious building. This percentage just about ties in with my own analysis.
A church wedding helps divide the day between the serious business of the marriage and the later celebration of the marriage.
Of course, there are many wedding venues other than churches that are spectacular, although they often come with a hefty price tag!
I have put together this short video of a typical church service wedding, in this case it is the beautiful St. Augustines in Hedon. It covers the wedding from the bride walking in to the church through to the walk down the aisle as a married couple.
For those who care all images taken on Fuji XH-1 with the 16-55 f2.8 lens.
It’s always a pleasure working with Bows & Vows, as ever gorgeous models and beautiful dresses. Although this bridal shoot was, in fairness more for my benefit, as I wanted to try out a couple of new flashlights.
The venue was the Hallmark Hotel in North Ferriby chosen for the view over the river Humber including the famous bridge. The weather could have been brighter but at least it was dry.
Mia and Luciana our models for the afternoon each had three changes of costume, featuring traditional brides dresses and bridesmaids dresses which could easily double up as an excellent prom outfit. The girls were aided in costume changes by Heather the shop manager.
Equipment used was two Godox AD200 lights one fitted with a 5″ reflector with grid the other bare bulb. These were fired with the standard Godox trigger. The camera used was the Fuji XH-1 coupled with the Fujinon 16-55 f2.8 lens.
For more information on the venue and Bows & Vows please visit:
With the weather giving the film ‘The Day After Tomorrow’ a run for its money I set off to photography Kelly and Lee’s wedding in Lincoln. Lady luck, however, would smile on us and no rain fell between the wedding ceremony and the start of the wedding breakfast.
I had never met Kelly and Lee before the wedding all the communication was between Lee’s father and myself. Although quite unusual this was the only way on this particular occasion.
The ceremony itself was very much a family affair with around thirty people present. Also a first for me was the location, Lincoln registry office. This is a fine old building complete with a small garden for photographs.
After the ceremony, we made our way to the Pyewipe Inn where we managed a few more photos before the weather turned against us.
All the images were taken on the Fuji XH-1 with the 16-55 f2.8 lens.
I hope you enjoy the short video which lasts for just three minutes.
Bows & Vows Prom Dress Cat Walk
I was privileged to photograph the Bows & Vows Prom Dress event held at the Trinity hotel on Sunday 12th February.
Showing off a wonderful array of designer prom dresses by Alexia Designs and Manon Fashion, beautifully modelled by their 4 gorgeous models, namely, Niamh, Mia, Ellie, and Katie. Well done girls great job!
The girls were dressed by Katie the founder and owner of Bows & Vows and Heather the shop manager.
Further images of different dresses can be seen on the Bows & Vows face book page.
GR Photography Portraiture.
One thing that always amazes me, is, after spending out, not an inconsiderable amount of money not only on the dress but the accompanying shoes, jewellery, hair, makeup, and even transport for these prom nights parents seem more than happy to just take a quick phone picture of their daughters (and sons) looking their absolute best.
Why not have a portrait session to really remember the time your offspring has almost finished school and is starting to move into adulthood.
My portrait sessions cost just £25. And to assist in keeping costs down why don’t a few friends get together (max 4) and we can get them all done at once!
Details of my portraiture can be found on my website www.grphotography.org
Stacey & Mark
A brief snapshot of Stacey & Mark’s wedding, held at St Michael’s church and reception at the Gardeners Coniston.
Just 40 images to give an idea of a most enjoyable late Summer’s day.
All images taken on the Fuji XT1 and the 23 and 35 lenses.
Hull Registry Office ‘Special’
My Registry office special was a great success last year, so I will continue with this rather special offer:
2 hours coverage to include brides’ arrival, the wedding service, and further photographs in Queens Gardens
Around 80 images supplied on USB £120
Please message me for any other information.
The Registry Office is still an extremely popular place to get married especially for couples who wish to have a quiet ceremony.
The Hull office is situated within the rather grand Guildhall, a huge improvement on the previous building thankfully now demolished!
Besides the impressive building, just outside, is Queens gardens a great location for those all important group pictures, and more intimate bridal portraits.
The short video less than 2.5 minutes gives a glimpse of my Hull Registry Office service, I do hope you enjoy it.
Sarah & James at the Kingston Theatre Hotel
Up to now the weather hasn’t been overly kind to me this year on wedding days, and at the start of Sarah & James wedding day it seemed the rain gods were dancing on my parade again! However by the time James arrived in the Aston DB9 the wet stuff was down to a drizzle and when Sarah (rather late it should be noted!) arrived in her Mercedes the clouds were parting and a strange rarely seen yellow ball was appearing in the sky. ( wedding Sarah & James )
James arrival was to the sound of the delicious exhaust note of an Aston Martin DB9 volante, he did look rather pleased with his mode of transport and rightly so.
The bridesmaids looking gorgeous in Cadburys purple came next and their driver said that traffic was at a standstill due to a road closure, it seemed the bride would arrive traditionally late, but with the wedding being officiated by the good staff of Hull Registry Office would it still be able to go ahead?
By good fortune our officials did not have another ceremony to perform and were happy to wait her arrival, (God bless the Hull R.O staff)
Sarah finally arrived half an hour late, but was unfazed by all the drama, and, with her brother who was giving her away walked elegantly in to the hotel.
It has been some time since I covered a wedding at the Kingston Theatre Hotel, but nothing has changed (except the master of ceremonies we now have a Peter, not an Alf) and that is all to the good, everything still runs like clockwork and the staff are as friendly as ever.
The ceremony over we arranged a few shots with the Aston as the driver elected to stay to allow a few pictures, and then went to the theatre gardens where all the group shots were taken, the toast master then ushered all the guests back to the hotel ready for the wedding breakfast.
Sarah & James had kindly offered me a meal with the guests so I happily tucked in to a traditional roast chicken dinner and a chocolate cheesecake which was to die for.
After the meal I took the newly married couple back to the gardens and took the couple shots, it’s always good to have a couple that will give some time for these shots, no rush, nice and relaxed…….. Wonderful.
I stayed on for the start of the reception and the all-important first dance.
As ever the pictures were taken on my Fuji XT-1 used with a combination of the 16mm f1.4 23mm f1.4 and the 50-140mm f2.8 lenses. Flash when used was the Cactus RF60 fired manually.
Dress by Samantha’s Chanterlands Ave.
Make Up Sarah Davidson.
If you would like to discuss your wedding plans please do get in touch.
I hope you enjoy the short video (2 minutes)
Wedding Mercure Grange Park Hotel
My first outing for this year was to photograph Katie & Joe’s wedding at the Mercure Grange Park Hotel, after all the wet weather we have had to endure since the start of the year I was very relieved (as I am sure Katie and Joe were) that the day stayed dry and bright.
Katie and Joe had booked me for the full day commencing with some final preps and running through the day to include their first dance as a married couple.
I thoroughly enjoy covering the preps, there is laughter, stress, tension, and sometimes even flashes of anger all mixed together which creates a wonderful atmosphere and the end result is always worth the effort.
I even managed to grab a few shots of Joe and his ‘bestie’ as they were also getting ready at the hotel, although young Charlie the bride and grooms son wasn’t having any pictures taken, not ever, no way no how! ……………Got him later!
The ceremony room at the Grange Park is dark with no natural light at all so flash was the order for all the images taken, I have recently changed my Fuji flash to a Nissin I40 and it is performing well, certainly more consistent than the Fuji.
Once Katie & Joe were married we moved quickly outside to grab the usual group shots whilst there was still sufficient light, it gets dark at 4 during early January.
I will take this opportunity to say a word about group shots: a number of local photographers have poo pooed group shots as out dated and not in style with the modern wedding. Really! When brides come to view their finished pictures it is inevitably the group shots they look at the longest and make most comments about.
Speeches were held before the wedding breakfast and went well, not too long, and full of humour, memories, and some tears, a good mixture! Unusually the bride also stood up and said some words which reduced a few people on the top table into emotional wrecks.
The reception entertainment was a disco, plus a photo-booth was also included and proved very popular with guests.
Equipment used was my faithful newly serviced Fuji XT1, and this was the first outing for my new, (well second hand), 23mm f1.4 lens and I think possibly half of the images were shot with it a wonderful piece of glass! the remainder were shot on the 16-55mm f2.8 zoom, the Samyang 8mm was used for the dance floor images.
I hope you enjoy watching the wedding images (it takes less than 3 minutes)
Vintage Life Magazine Photo shoot
Something a little different for me was a photo shoot organised by Sarah Clayton of Hair Majesty for an article which has appeared in the January issue of Vintage Life magazine.
The article entitled “My Look” shows a detailed step by step guide to a hairstyle know as Sweetheart hair.
My brief was to photograph each step whilst Sarah wrote the instructions. Some further images were taken to show the finished style. The model was Catherine Day and her dress was supplied by Lil Miss Vintage.
The shoot itself took place in Sarah’s salon known as Hair Majesty, her premises are like a step back in time with a huge display of 1950’s and 60’s posters, furniture, and other paraphernalia your mum or nan would instantly recognise, (sadly for me I also spotted many items which were in my mums bedroom!)
All the images were shot on the Fuji XT1 with the 16-55 f2.8 lens. Lighting was provided from a single Lencarta 300 flash fitted with an Elinchrome softbox.
Sarah’s web site www.hairmajestyhull.co.uk
Lil Miss Vintage web site www.lilmissvintage.co.uk
Working with Sarah is always a pleasure and our next project has now been planned and dates are being finalised.
Hallmark Hotel Wedding Emma & Will. Early July saw me at the Hallmark hotel to photograph the wedding of Emma and Will. The weather was excellent and Emma looked fabulous in her dress supplied by Bride & Co in Hull.
As Emma was staying at the hotel I managed to get some images of the latter stages of her getting ready, one of my favourite things to photograph, I enjoy the bustle and the nervous tension.
After the wedding ceremony the usual group shots were taken and then some of the bride and groom both in the field and on the swing. Once the formal shots were finished the guests moved back into the bar area giving me the chance to take some candid shots of the guests, always a favourite with the bride and groom when looking at their finished pictures.
Like most photographers I have preferred venues for photographing a wedding (and some that aren’t preferred) the Hallmark Hotel in North Ferriby is certainly one of my preferred locations.
If the weather is pleasant there is a huge field at the rear overlooking the Humber and on into North Lincolnshire and if the weather isn’t playing ball there is enough space inside to take reasonable sized groups. Another plus is, if the wedding ceremony is held there is more than sufficient natural light unlike some venues who use rooms totally devoid of windows! Why oh why do venues think this is good?
I hope you enjoy the short video (less than 3 minutes) which I think tells the story of the day.
As ever images taken on the Fuji XT1 mostly with the 16-55 f2.8 lens.
If you would like me to take your wedding photographs or would like to discuss your wedding plans please get in touch.