Updated: Feb 5
A pre-wedding shoot at the venue is always a great way to understand the venue and the couples needs for the day. It's not always necessary but I could resist the offer of lunch at this beautiful hotel right on the beach at Saunton Sands. The pre-shoot was fun, sunny and perfect shooting conditions. Sally a George are very respected business owners in the area. They run a dog's kennels. George is dubbed the dog whisperer!
The couple took to the sands for their pre-wedding shoot rolling up the jeans so I could capture some of this incredible Jurassic coastline an area that they had very much fallen in love with. The wedding venue hotel looked across the bay.
I really enjoyed the pre shoot, to be fair I always do. Pre shoots are always a great way to get to know my couples. Plus they get images that imo just slightly feel a little more everyday.
So... its the 22nd of September and Sally and Georges wedding day has arrived, I made it in good time to Devon that morning, actually record time! Unfortunately the weather was not on our side today. Pouring with rain! I was crying a little inside to be honest. When i arrived, I send Sally a message and I went down to the restaurant and joined them for breakfast, I was introduced to the family and ate eggs.
The day started with capturing Georges Daughter and family getting ready... Such a lovely family who have later booking me for a shoot.
Essentially as the couple and their families were all in the same hotel... I was pinging back and forth to everyone capturing the preparation moments for every one... When i arrived with Sally's daughters, it was clear to see the husbands had a few to drink the previous evening! Although a little worse for wear... they were happy for me to get stuck in and grab some shots of them.
George wore tails, with a Burgundy waist coat and his best man matched the accent colours, I don't think i have every laughed so much while shooting the grooms-men! George took it all in his stride. Chilled and relaxed from the moment I step into the room.
Sally's dress was sweetheart, nipped in at the waist, she wore pearls and a heart shaped pendant necklace. Sally was a little nervous while getting ready and rightly so.. she had been waiting for this moment for a long time. Her daughters helped he get ready, They had made her an amazing bridal broach bouquets. It was amazing. With hair, make up and sally in her dress, it was time for me to wait for her arrival with the groom...
The ceremony was lovely, very emotional with tears from both. It's hard not to feel a sense of emotion myself when being a wedding photographer - it what drives me to get the pictures I do.
The rain was still pouring outside and it was making me a little annoyed as I had been down here with the couple for the pre-wedding shoot and it was lovely - so I knew the potential for images on the beach. So I decided to hold off on the portraits for a little bit and wait for a break in the weather.
I set up group shots inside the venue with a casual vanity fair style set up... it worked well and it was so fun because I asked guests to do funny faces and act daft of some clicks... which made everyone relax. The formal photos although super important and an obligation of the wedding - can be a little stuffy, no one really likes doing them ... its sort of mandatory wedding shots to be honest... but at least this way guests were not soaking wet, and Sally and George loved the uniqueness of how I presented them.
After the couple and guests had eaten... I looked out the window and although there was no sun... there was a break in the rain. It was still wet, but I knew this was the best time to go and do portraits... the light was getting low and there was no chance of there being a golden hour on a day like that. So I grabbed the couple and we made our way down to the beach... oh my it was damp. That being said Sally and George embraced every moment of it! You can either not do it ... or go with it and they totally did.
It was so much fun... Sally's dress was absolutely covered in sand but by the time we had finished, but within 20 mins of returning to the hotel she was spotless! For the moments of being a little cold and a little fresh... the images I captured for them were memorable! These are the types of images that I strive for as a photographer, natural, epic backdrops with happy fun times that really show through. Yeah sure we do a little posing, and most couples don't like the thought of being pose at all... but its so chilled when I do it... I rather it all messed up and I got some good fun images out of to be honest than miss the chemistry between a couple when they are both doing something like this. Because essentially that's what its all about at this part of the day... being you!
Once we back inside, the day drew into the evening and the guests changed and the party started... with a live band and photo booth. Not to mention the cake cutting! The first dance commenced... and and and as always some dodgy druken dad dancing! What memories we do have can fade... what photos we do have can be displayed.
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Dates go fast so its never too early to book...!