This week I am celebrating ten years of wedding photography. I started shooting weddings in 2008 and this year, astonishingly, it is 2018. I thought it’d be interesting to commemorate the decade that was by looking back at my some of my favourite images from each year. If you didn’t see Part 1 yesterday, you can find it here.
It’s worth saying a few things. Firstly, this has been an incredibly tough exercise! Choosing your absolute favourites from such a body of work is extremely challenging – I’ve delivered over a quarter of a million wedding photographs in 10 years. It’s impossible to choose a single definitive image for each year; each choice is, instead, a representative favourite, an ambassador for the year if you will. Secondly, the images that have best stood the test of time tend to be documentary black and whites. They tell a story; this gives them depth. The timeless B&W treatment is something I’ve pursued relentlessly, and helps the images to feel ageless. From ten years of wedding photography, I’ve chosen only one colour image, and one portrait. The rest are photojournalistic black and whites. That’s quite telling.
2013 – Cracking Everyone Up
Steph & Neil @ Cripps Stone Barn, Cotswolds
Speeches are one of my favourite parts of the wedding day. They are chock full of emotions and expressions. It’s dynamic, but the subjects are relatively stationary, which makes for wonderful pictorial stories without chasing shadows. Neil is a extremely funny man and he had everyone, including Steph, in stitches during his Groom’s speech. (Canon 5D Mark III + EF 35mm f/1.4L @ 1/1000th, f/2.0, ISO 1600)
2014 – Reservoir Wedding Dogs
Anna & Ben @ Temple Island, Henley
First and foremost I attend a wedding with the intention to document. Second to that I hang on to two immutable truths. Brides want to look beautiful and Grooms want to look cool! Anna & Ben were married on Temple Island in the middle of the River Thames in Henley. I caught up with the boys in the morning at their hotel before they made their way to the pier to meet their launch. As they got up to leave, everyone looked disgustingly cool. There’s a real hollywood vibe here that I love. The bags and boxes just add to it. If you’re wondering, they don’t contain shooters, it’s a croquet set. (Canon 5D Mark III + EF 35mm f/1.4L @ 1/1000th, f/2.8, ISO 400)
2015 – Romantique
Sophie & Findlay @ Iscoyd Park
The first kiss is rarely as good as this. These two pashed it out of the park. I love the light streaming in, the hint of a smile creeping round the side of otherwise unseen faces, the black tie backdrop and the overwhelming sense of romance. (Canon 5D Mark III + EF 35mm f/1.4L @ 1/250th, f/2.8, ISO 800)
2016 – From the Golden Age
Faye & James @ Elmore Court
This one is my only portrait entry. I love portraits and we set some time aside for a ‘creative session’ as I call it, at just about every wedding. That said, these are rarely the images that captivate and move on the grandest scale. This frame of Faye & James transcends all that. Faye has the most compelling face and despite the slight sense of melancholy, I just adore the mood of this image. It feels like something from the Golden Age of Hollywood. (Canon 5D Mark III + EF 50mm f/1.4 @ 1/320th, f/2.8, ISO 100)
2017 – Sparklers at Midnight
Penny & James @ Iscoyd Park
Sparkler send-offs are always fun as they’re very dynamic and capture the ‘now-or-never’ mood at the close of a wedding. Penny & James remind me of Audrey Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart in Sabrina: suave, beautiful, extremely aspirational! (Canon 5D Mark III + Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art @ 1/50th, f/2.0, ISO 3200)
So, that’s a quick look back on my first ten years of wedding photography. My huge thanks to all those who have commissioned me, it’s been a great pleasure shooting for so many incredible couples!