On Reflection

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On Reflection

I'm always on the look out for a different angle. Anyone can point a camera and press a button, but really thinking about the composition of an image, understanding the effects of light and getting the settings just right are the preserves of a true photographer.

 

I shot this image as Jo was getting ready in the morning. The make up artist had chosen a pool of gorgeous window light to work in, which suited me just fine as the soft light is absolutely perfect for photographs.

It would have been fairly straight forward for me to shoot a traditional angle here but I wanted to put my own unique stamp on the image. I saw that the picture on the wall offered an opportunity for a reflection, and popped my 27mm lens on to make sure I captured the whole scene, setting an aperture of f2.8 to allow as much natural light in as possible and spot metered for the subject (I know, I am a geek!).

The result was this split composition, much better than the easy option and a unique shot of the bride getting ready in the morning. This is what I do, wherever I can, photography is all about seeing images and being creative to get unique perspectives.

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Looking Good

Looking Good

The Bride (and Groom!) are clearly the stars of the show at any wedding, but that doesn't mean that you shouldn't pull out all of the stops to make sure that you look your best as a guest at a wedding.

Curvy Tall Girl is much more than a fashion blog; Jill Jones is all about timeless style rather than being just another a slave to fashion. Her Facebook page offers real world practical advice and guidance to help ladies and gents of all shapes and sizes look their absolute best whatever the occasion might be.

Click here for a link to one of the best fashion blogs in Northern Ireland, including where to shop to make sure you look your best for less, or take advantage of a personal consultation . . if you mention that you heard about her page here she may even offer a cheeky discount!

It's personal

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It's personal

I thought i'd share something that is pretty personal to me;

This is a photo of my dear old Nan looking through my very own wedding album with my wife snapped at a family party. I love the expression on her face, she looks so proud and is clearly enjoying looking back through all of the photographs from our wedding in the summer of 2014.

I was obviously on the other side of the camera that day, but this is what wedding photography is all about; curating memories of the most special day of your life to enjoy with friends and family.

Have a look at some more of my images here 

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Why I love this image

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Why I love this image

I love this image because of the way that all of the elements come together. This is a magician showing a card trick to a couple of young guests at a wedding in Lancashire. I spotted that this was going on in front of a nice big window whilst the rest of the room was quite dark, so I knew the lighting of the scene would be lovely.

I wanted to capture the reaction of the children so approached from just behind the magician, and so that no one noticed I was there, and waited for the exact second that the trick was revealed to capture the image. None of them have noticed me and are still in the moment rather than posing a picture; the older girl with an expression of suspicion and scepticism on her face, whilst the little lady in the middle of the frame is clearly amazed at what she has seen.

I love the way that the magician frames the image, and the way that your eye is drawn from the centre of the scene across all of the different reactions on their faces - you do not see the trick but you know that it is there.

 

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You must have a great camera!

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You must have a great camera!

These are a couple of my cameras, I won't bore you with all of the geeky details but you could say they are very good cameras, and I certainly think so.

Now forgive me if it seems as though I may be going off topic a little bit but I want you to imagine that you are sitting in a Michelin Starred fine dining restaurant. You have just finished the most amazing five course dinner you have ever had the pleasure of eating, so good  in fact that you are not even worried about what number might be at the bottom of the bill you are about to receive.

You spot the head chef walking past your table and feel so pleased with the meal you have had you decide to complement him on his work, so you turn to him and excitedly say;

"You Must Have a fantastic Oven"

I know what you are thinking and you are right, this scenario seems ridiculous! The chef clearly understands flavour, texture, the combination of elements and ingredients that go together to make a stunning dish. But as a photographer I am often told that I "must have a great camera", and indeed I do own a few such examples, but it is the ability to see a great picture and instinctively know exactly where to shoot it from that makes a great photograph.

Understanding the relationship between aperture, shutter speed and ISO is also a good idea, as well as a grasp on the geometry of an image and the optimum placement of subject matter to create a pleasing composition.

Your friend, colleague, or relative may offer to shoot your wedding for you as they "have a good camera" but please make sure that they really do know how to use it, as you only get one chance at your wedding day and as I have said here I believe that it is the most important thing to consider when planning a wedding.

*NB - I also have a pretty good oven and do a mean Italian Pork Escalope with capers and roasted sweet pepper, but in no way claim to be Marcus Wareing!

 

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Boys Club

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Boys Club

I think it's fair to say that the spotlight is usually well and truly focussed on the leading lady during the wedding day, and rightly so, but let us spare a moment for the grooms, ushers and best men!

Some of my favourite pictures are often of the fellas as they get themselves looking presentable with their best pals around them, usually with a hint of banter and bravado, then making their way to the ceremony as the nerves slowly set in and the machismo of the morning slips away as their bride arrives!

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"Never work with children or animals"

"Never work with children or animals"

Well that's how the saying goes, but I have to disagree! Your wedding day is one of the happiest occasions of your entire life, with all of your family and friends around to enjoy the celebrations, and if there's anyone that can be relied upon to make the most of the party atmosphere it's definitely the kids.

The little people among us will be sliding up and down the dance floor on their knees, dancing like no one is watching and generally doing all of the stuff the adults would love to do if they didn't have to act all grown up!

I've photographed a few weddings with furry four legged members of the family on the guest list too, which can also add something that I can't really explain, and can only clumsily describe as honesty. Animals just can not lie, there is no option of a cheesy grin to hide behind.

So if you're planning on booking a kennel for the pooch and thinking about having a no kids policy at your wedding in case they ruin the day, I hope that the pictures below might sway you in the opposite direction; they might just make the day.

In Bruges

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In Bruges

It was our wedding anniversary at the end of September, and I suprised my lovely wife with a weekend in the Belgian city of Bruges (because i'd seen it in the Colin Farrell film!) It was an awesome place to visit, some incredible architecture as well as the obvious; chocolate, beer and waffles! My Fuji X100s came along for the ride and I thought that I would share some snaps with you here. Just click on the thumbnail to enlarge the picture and scroll through

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The Power of Black and White

The Power of Black and White

I like this picture . . . . . . . 

The sun is shining and the image captures a little moment between Hayley and her bridesmaids as her veil catches the breeze outside the church immediately before she linked arms with her dad and walked up the aisle on her wedding day.

I like this one more . . . 

The same image in black and white adds a level of intimacy, a sense that you are snatching a glimpse of a moment you might otherwise had not witnessed, and somehow taking away the colour adds a layer of emotion, I love black and white pictures for this reason. 

One eminent photographer put it much better than I ever could when he said;

When you photograph people in colour, you photograph their clothes. But when you photograph people in Black and white, you photograph their souls!
— Ted Grant

Cote D'Azur

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Cote D'Azur

We were lucky enough to get away to the South of France for a week recently and of course I took a camera with me, so thought I'd share a few of our holiday snaps with you folks! We love to travel and would be rally happy to hear from you if you're planning a wedding somewhere exotic! - get in touch with us here and tell us all about it

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Why I love this picture

Why I love this picture

I love this picture. It's not your traditional wedding photograph, but for me it tells a story. Weddings are a very rare thing, as they are a time when the bride and groom have almost all of their family and friends together in one room . . . how often does that happen!?

This photograph captures three generations of the same family that have come together for a very special occasion. My favourite thing is that the expressions are completely genuine and natural. I managed to sneak up un-noticed and get this shot. A few seconds later I was spotted and the moment was gone as everyone put on their best cheesy grins and made baby wave at the camera.

Capturing moments like this is why I love to photograph weddings.