What is your most memorable wedding?
A Pirate themed wedding !!! The wedding featured over three pages in Dumfries and Galloway Life Magazine. I managed to organise a day at sea in a 3 mast sailing ship for the bridal party in advance of the wedding where we did all the full costume shots. These images were then used on a big screen at the wedding venue as their guests - all 250 - in full pirate costume attended the wedding. The reception room was all "decked" out in a pirate theme with the Jolly Roger Flag flying above the hotel. Even the band for the reception were in full pirate costume. So my most memorable to date has to be my pirate themed wedding. Great fun and some very colourful photographs.
Describe your style in 5 adjectives.
Professional, friendly, dedicated, passionate, relaxed
What about your business are you most proud of?
The positive feedback that I receive from my clients regarding my professionalism and and my abilities as a photographer. As the famous photographer Eve Arnold said "If a photographer cares about people before the lens and is compassionate, much is given. It is the photographer not the camera, that is the instrument"
What is your No. 1 wedding planning tip for couples?
Think of your photographer as a wedding co-ordinater as well - we are with you for the full day. A good wedding photographer will know all the timings for the day and will be making sure everything runs smoothly - a stressed bride and groom will show in the photos. Don't scrimp on photography, the flowers die, the food is eaten, the wedding day is on average over after 14 hours - good photographs last for ever and are a timeless record of your special day.
What is your favourite personal touch you have seen at a wedding?
The lighting of a large candle which burns during the wedding breakfast on its own table in memory to loved ones that have passed.
Describe your typical process with a couple.
An essential element of my wedding photography is an early meeting with the bride and groom so we can get to know each other and build a good friendly and fun rapport. I want my couples to be relaxed and enjoy their big day. From these meetings, usually over a coffee, I can get to fully understand the couples wishes and also note the little behavioural signals and messages between them. You want to click with the subjects before you click with the shutter! I combine this with a pre-wedding shoot at the venue or a favourite location. This helps everybody relax, and gives the bride and groom the confidence that their wedding photography is in safe hands.
Part of my preparation also includes a visit to the venue(s) to plan your photography within each setting. I also contact your minister/celebrant/registrar and any wedding coordinator to ensure everything runs smoothly on the big day. We also prepare a shoot list with all the names for any formal shoots in advance of the day so that can be addressed smoothly and efficiently.
What is the No. 1 photo that you think every couple should take?
The one that their hearts desire - every couple will have seen many examples of photographs that they like - don't be afraid to say to your photographer - it is after all your wedding - your day. I often ask my brides to set up a Pinterest Board and pin on there favourite photographs that they see on the lead up to the wedding. They share this with me and that gives me an indication as to the what they like. After all its your wedding and I want to capture exactly the moments in a way that the bride and groom envisage.
What is the most original photo you’ve been asked to take at a wedding?
Where a Harris Hawk swooped down across the gardens in the grounds of a Castle carrying the rings in a pouch during the ceremony and landed on the gloved hand of the best man - now that is a pressure shot !! Very Harry Potter !!
What do you recommend for a rainy day wedding?
Umbrellas - seriously though, I always have a wet weather plan - I am based in Scotland!!! The most important thing to remember is that my skins waterproof. I always carry a spare set of clothes because its guaranteed that I will end up wetter than anybody else !! Seriously though its all about pre-planning.
Describe how you got into photography.
Been around cameras since I was at school and during 30 years of policing. Now established my business on a full time basis since finishing in the service. Wedding and portrait photography I have been doing throughout the years ancillary to my main career. Now its all photography and I am living the dream and meeting fantastic people - there is nothing more fulfilling than the tears of happiness and the big hug from a bride when you present your work.