It's been at least five hundred years since Kenilworth last had medieval guests as elegant as Wendy and Ray who chose a medieval theme for their wedding in Kenilworth Castle's Gatehouse and went to the trouble of hiring costumes for their guests too
Future historians will no doubt stumble across Wendy and Ray's wedding photographs and dedicate hours to researching the seventh wife!
Standing in the heart of Coventry for over 650 years, St Mary's Guildhall has witnessed events of both local and national importance during its long history; none quite so important to Jools and Chris as their wedding last weekend!
Night time photography presents several challenges: it's dark so we need light, but flash can be harsh, it's dark so we can't see the controls on the camera and it's dark so the camera's autofocus has nothing to pick up on (they need to discern contrast) and, because it's dark it is also difficult to use manual focus!
So next time I'll be taking the hand held Lowell iLite I used this in the cake shot at the Chace Hotel bottom right
The photograph left was taken with a single off camera flash. For the title image I've used Nikon's wireless flash control (once you have the hang of it works extremely well): the couple are lit with two speedlights to give some depth and avoid that 'pasted in' effect that can come from flash. They have Holy Trinity Church in the background; I use a wide aperture (f1.4) to captures the atmosphere given by the Church's lit windows
Mita was absolutely stunning and very happy to have some time on her own with paul after the first service. Hindhu tradition does not allow either bride or groom to eat before the religious ceremony and this gave me the perfect excuse to take them to nearby Brueton Park for some autumn wedding photography on the banks of the River Blythe
I've used my Arri tungsten to light the photograph top right, the idea was to give a cinematic feel to the image which would have been complicated with flash
The river and woodland have provided for some beautiful bokeh in these back lit shots of Mita
I've also been using my new f1.4 85mm for indoor shots using the available ambient
Gemma and Chris travelled from Hull to be married in Coventry and then spend some time with their friends at Kenilworth Castle, you see that the sensible ones have fur throws - it was a cold day!
I rather liked the retro feel to this shot of the newlyweds with their Merc outside Cheylsemore House
And the usual exposure issue. Neither film nor digital can cope with the dynamic range in an image such as that above. Here I have exposed for the guys to give this very high key effect. Anthony and Helina's wedding at the Sacred Heart Church in Coventry with a family reception at the Standard Triumph Sports and Social Club
Well not really, but this photograph of Wayne and his party walking up Church Street to his wedding at St Marys Church in Warwick is reminscent of a certain famous album cover. It's a candid shot captured by my second camera (I'll give credit where it's due). The direction was simple; 'walk up the street'. My assistant anticipated the shot and ran up to a gap between parked cars, the result is different and will add that important ingredient, variety, to the wedding album
Wedding photography is a stressful business; the light's not consistent, the guests would prefer to be in the bar and the best man is nowhere to be found when it comes to rounding up the groups!
Anne Frances' party at the Golden Lion in Easenhall ran without a hitch, we got all the shots and brought our own mobile studio light so that the sun could do as it pleased. The guests seem to have enjoyed the group set up we see above
A classic wedding image; cutting the cake. John and Kath at Queans in Leamington Spa at the end of July. You'll note that they are not actually 'cutting' the cake, we set the shot up to get good composition and lighting, in this case with two speedlights, one to the front, camera left and the other behind the couple to give us some separation from the background. the rear flash has its diffuser dome on, I think that I'll try taking that off and putting the flash head it in 'zoom' mode so as to keep the spill down on the background
I've used On-Ones's phototools to add a warm glow to the shot, reproduced at this size it looks out of focus, the print however looks fantastic
John and Kath married at the Lord Leycster Hospital in Warwick with the reception in Leamington. I have some nice shots of them on the bandstand in Victoria Gardens which I'll post and comment shortly
Stephanie and Graham married at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Bulkington and then enjoyed a splendid reception at nearby Weston Hall. Stephanie looks radiant in this photograph taken while she was getting ready with her friends and bridesmaids in the hotel before the service. the image has been through PhotoTools 'Baby Glow' action, gorgeous. The frame is 'whisk', again from PhotoTools, different
James toasting his best man and ushers outside Stoneleigh Church. It's a heavy Czech brew brought along by an usher to steady the nerves. I'm not so sure that it was needed though, he looks relaxed enough to me!
Louise and Lee's delightful wedding at Wethele Manor recently, where the light during the service is just perfect as you can see from the images left and right
Too many wedding photographers blast away with flash when it's just not necessary. A little bit of care and direction will give perfect lighting; flash is safe, but flat and makes for unattractive highlights on foreheads and cheeks
Flash does have it's uses and can be used to very special effect. My thanks to Crash Taylor for this technique using two remotely fired Nikon speedlights to light the first dance. This takes a little time to set up; I think that the picture below proves that it's worth the effort
Rachel and Phil married at Kenilworth's Methodist Church in Waverley Road and then went on to Woodside in Kenilworth for their Wedding Breakfast and a game of croquet with the bridesmaids, best man and ushers
But we didn't let it spoil Chris and Sarah's wedding day at Kenilworth Castle Gatehouse. Umbrellas provide good light and often add alot of colour to your wedding images.
I have a portable studio flash which we set up in the Gatehouse's ceremony room to keep the guests dry during the group photograph session
Then over the road to Harringtons Restaurant for the reception
Rather than walk the newly weds opted to be taken in their wedding car, a vintage Model T Ford. It's no longer raining, perhaps a little cooler though?
The Hilton Hotel in Manchester for a fashion shoot with wedding dresses and ball gowns. We are lucky to have some splendid models and gorgeous dresses. The pictures on this page were all shot in natural light
Follow the Cherish the Dress link to see what else we were able to do with time, a spendid venue and different types of natural and off camera lighting
There is not always the time or space to set lighting up at a wedding, but where there's a will... Let's sit down and talk through your wedding time timetable and see whether we can't try something a little different for your wedding album
Rain, then sun, then rain, then lots of wind - typical english weather braved by Jeff and Sue at the Lord Leycester Hospital, Warwick
This Warwick Wedding Venue with its beautiful gardens perfect for wedding photography. Above we make the most of our umbrella whilst waiting for the shower to pass
Every wedding ceremony is full of emotion, I think that I've captured Susie and Jeff's joy and sense of fun in the shot above. The reception was held at the Ettington Chase Conference Centre. I've had my Nikon D200 fitted with an infra-red filter by ACS and caught the picture below which makes it seem that they are in middle of a snowfield I think
English Heritage asked me to be their photographer at a reception for those involved in the recreation of the four hundred year old Warwickshire garden at Kenilworth Castle. Originally built by Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester in an attempt to impress Elizabeth I visiting Kenilworth during one of her annual processions around the kingdom, the project has cost more than 2 million pounds and caused not inconsiderable controversy. More knot garden pictures
Jo and Rob had a blessing at the Holy Trinity Parish Church in Long Itchington which is where my daughter Georgina caught the spring daffodils above and then went on to a family reception at Wethele Manor, Weston under Wethele near Cubbington below
I really like this picture of Jo and Rob celebrating their wedding with friends at Vintners in Stratford upon Avon
Light from my flash has hit a mirror somewhere in the room and lit Rob's glass, all by design of course!
I'm pleased with this one too. Katie and Ben married in the Wren Chapel at Wroxall Abbey, I caught them in lounge and managed this mirror shot. This time everything except the pose and expressions in this shot is by design; I've manipulated it so that the mirror is square on, where's the photographer?
A flying lunch for Hilary Benn, minister for the environment, at the Cotswold Falconry Centre in Batsford Park just one mile from Moreton in Marsh, Gloucestershire. Hilary is seen here with one the centre's Harris Hawks; its short, rounded wings and large tail enable it to hunt in dense woodland and forest, maybe he'll have had a few tips for Hilary in the Westminster Jungle!
We had a few days away with family near Brecon, my daughter captured these lovely images of her cousins. She's using a 6MP Nikon D40 with the kit lens, so much for all that expensive gear of yours Dad!
It's rarely easy to photograph young children, here the value of the subject having a happy relationship and feeling relaxed and secure with the photographer clearly shows
Rachael and Chris were married at Balsall Common last weekend, a beautiful, family service at the Blessed Robert Grissold church in Meeting House Lane. They decided that they'd take the bus from their wedding service at Balsall Common to the reception near Claverdon
The bride had been 15 minutes late arriving but public transport does not have a bride's privilege and our bus was bang on time. I'll post some more wedding couple on a bus images and some of the wedding photography at Ardencote Manor. Keeping up my commentary on the weather: it is getting warmer, the sun is still rather shy, but a splendid day was had by all
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