A typical wedding day
10am I like to start the day by arriving at wherever the bride is getting ready 2 hours before she leaves for the venue. I'll then introduce myself and then get on with photographing the dress, shoes and jewellery. I won't get in anyones way and I find it's really helpful to get to know some of the key people of the wedding. Once everyone is used to me being around I'll settle into the background and take candid photos on a long lens, you'll barely notice I'm there. This part of the day offers some of the best opportunities of the whole day.
The highlight of the preparations is the dressing of the bride, obviously I'm not going to intrude so I always ask for someone to give me a shout when the dress is on and I can then photograph the lacing up of the dress. There is always a lot of emotion at this point especially when dad sees her for the first time in the dress and this is great for pictures. At this point I head off to the venue to capture the groom pacing and greeting guests.
1pm Fortunately I know many of the registrars and vicars in Gloucestershire and they know that I'm very unobtrusive so they happily let me photograph the ceremony. I try to stand 10-15 metres behind the registrar/vicar and use a long lens to capture some moments during the ceremony, once again you'll probably won't notice me.
after the ceremony
1.30pm At this point you're going to want to meet you guests, so I will photograph you walking out down the aisle and then leave you alone and slip into reportage mode. After about 15 minutes I'll ask an Usher to help me round up the people needed for the family shots, we'll sort all of that out and once everyone is in place I'll ask you to join us. The traditional family group pictures comprise of; parents, siblings and wedding party and typically take about 20 minutes to shoot. It's always good fun and all the guests are expecting this so they is usually a crowd of them behind me. I often take some shots with their cameras for them.
I'm very conscious that it's not my photoshoot, but your wedding so I don't hang about, I'll take you away from you guests in little 10 minute bursts.
When you're ready we can go off to somewhere photogenic and take pictures of just the two of you, 10 minutes later you'll be back and the guests won't have missed you.
4pm Some photographers pack up at this point and eat, but that would miss some truly great moments. This is the time that most guests have been looking forward to, the booze is flowing and there's new people to meet and old mates to catch up with. I am back in reportage mode now working with a long lens from the other side of the room catching the laughter between courses. I'll grab something to eat for 20 minutes when everyone is eating. The speeches are ace for pictures, but I realise it's sometimes a trial for the folk making them, so I won't add to the stress, I'll shoot from a distance at the back of the room.
6pm The speeches are over everyone is a bit tipsy, so this is a perfect time to get some great bridal party photos. I'll round up the people needed and we'll head outside and do some cooler, artier pictures, often we'll go out in a field at sunset or walk wizard of oz style down a lane somewhere. If the weather isn't great I can set up a little studio in the corner and do Photo Booth type portraits using a lovely old frame I have.
8pm I'll set up my lights for the first dance and carry on shooting until I'm happy I've got some nice shots of the guests dancing too.
And that's about it for me unless there are any other pictures that you want, I try to limit my day to 10 hours, but I won't be clock watching .