Wedding Photojournalist Association Award for Ying and Alex’s Wedding at Botley’s Mansion

Earlier this year, I was able to join the Wedding Photojournalist Association.  This organisation curates its members to ensure they have the best documentary wedding photographers from around the world.  So in order to join, my portfolio has to be reviewed by a panel for high standards and to show that it I took a documentary and photojournalistic approach to photographing weddings.  So it was very exciting to be able to join!

Just this last month, I photographed the wedding of Ying and Alex at Botley’s Mansion.  Their friends were so much fun and the dance floor was on fire! I love that the guys picked up both the groom tossed them around the dance floor.  This image was happened so naturally and I’m so glad Ying and Alex had me there to photograph it.

For those techie people, this image was shot with a Sony A9, with one on camera and one off camera flash and the awesome 18mm Zeiss Batis Lens.

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Lucy & Laurie’s Wedding featured on “Love My Dress”

When I first started shooting weddings back in 2009, I fell in love with the Wedding Blog “Love My Dress”. It was just the most incredible collection of stylish weddings with a little bit of a vintage touch.  I made it a goal to one day see my photography worked featured on this blog.

Since then, Love My Dress has only gone from strength to strength, and although this isn’t my first feature on this incredible blog, I still get a thrill seeing my images featured on there. Thank you Lucy and Laurie not only having the most stunning woodland wedding, but also being so willing to have your wedding featured. Do check out the beautiful blog post on Love My Dress today!

Love My Dress did a fantastic job on this blog post and I really love how they put the whole thing together!

 

Love My Dress Wedding Feature

 

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Crockwell Farm Winter Wedding {Kellie & Lee}

Northamptonshire wedding venue in Rural Surroundings.  Crockwell Farm does really feel like a working Farm, tractors and all.  On your visit to Crockwell Farm, you’ll drive past beautiful villages and rolling hills.  It really makes you feel like you’re away from it all.

As someone who has been to a lot of wedding venues, I’m very quick to notice what works and what doesn’t work.  What I like about Crockwell Farm is how well it’s thought through the venue is.  The bridal suite goes straight into the ceremony room, which then flows nicely into the drinks and reception space.  Although there is plenty of outdoor space, you could have the whole wedding inside without needing to go outside at all.  This is rare in a venue, and it makes it so perfect for winter weddings or if you’re worried about the weather at all. Although it was March, it was bitterly cold the day of Kellie and Lee’s Wedding, and having the venue flow so well kept the party going and everyone comfortable.

I had the chance to meet Kellie and Lee last year at her friends, Rebecca and Stephen’s wedding.  It’s such a compliment to be referred by another client.  And it’s great to see previous clients again at their friends weddings.  It really does make me feel like being apart of the family.

Kellie and Lee wanted a modern rustic feel, mixing greys and pinks together.

They were really looking forward to just having everyone together for the day.

Kellie and Lee, thank you for having my second shooter Elyse and myself up to Crockwell Farm for your wedding.  It was such a lovely day and you both were the nicest clients to work with.  Having clients like you make my job so easy and enjoyable, so if you could get married every weekend, that’d be ace ;)


“Kari, you’re truly amazing and unbelievably talented! I can’t thank you enough for everything! You’re so amazing to be around in person, and have been so amazing throughout the entire process ! I can’t speak highly enough of you and thank you again for capturing our day so perfectly !! ” 


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Nine Ways to Pull of Wedding and Engagement Photography in Central London

Anyone who speaks to me and hears my accent knows I’m not a native Londoner.  But London has now been my home for most of my adult life, and for most of that, I’ve been making a living as a professional photographer here.  I have years of experience shooting on these streets, and I’m never bored of it.  I think I’m actually more in Love with London then the first day I step foot here.

London can be a tricky place to photograph in for professional purposes.  Everything from Wedding, to Engagement Sessions to Portraits, needs a slightly special “London Approach”.


1. Know your Private and Public property

To be fair, if you don’t know what is your public and private property, you’ll be told very quickly by an over-eager security guard.  This isn’t as much of a problem for engagement sessions when your clients are wearing “normal clothing” but more of an issue for wedding day or shoots involving any time of clothes that look wedding related.

The more “stuff” your shoot involves, the more likely you are to be asked to move on.  Flashes, soft boxes, reflectors, and props all make you stand out more from the normal joe or jane out on the streets taking photos.  Carefully consider what you’ll actually need and figure out ways that you can minimise the size of what you’re taking.

Generally most pavements (or footpaths) are fair game, however some cross private property that are given “public access”.  So you might not be aware that you’ve accidentally popped onto private property.

Expect that when your clients put on “wedding day outfits” the likelihood of being spoken to be a security guard increases.  Most all security guards I’ve encountered have been polite and nice to me and the clients.

If you’re under any doubt about your location, get what you need quickly just incase you’re asked to move on.  If you’re not sure where you want to shoot, scout your locations in advance and make notes about how you’d like to shoot that location.  If you’re using lighting, set it up in advance.  Brief your clients before you get to the location about what you’d like them to do.  The more prep you can do in advance helps you get the shot quickly and be able to move on, just incase someone does speak to you.

Royal Parks, such as Hyde Park, Regents Park, St. James’s Park all require photography permits. The photography permit does have a fee, but can be easily obtained from the Royal Parks Office.  Apply for this permission sooner rather than later, as they would like this to be at least 8 weeks before the shoot day.

Don’t assume that just because a hotel that your clients are getting married in may be next to a Royal Park that you automatically have permission to shoot in this park.  The fines for wedding shoots in Royal Parks are high, and don’t assume that the hotel will sort this for you.

If you’re looking for me to tell you exactly what is and what isn’t private property in Central London, I’m not going to do that.  Mostly because I don’t want that liability sitting on my shoulders.  However, the more you move quickly and keep things low key, the less problems you’ll have.

2. Shoot at Sunrise

I often find myself out of bed at 4 in the morning and catching a taxi to meet photography clients in central London.  Every time the alarm goes off, I question myself on why I keep suggesting this in the first place.  But then I’m met with the gorgeous morning light and empty London streets, and I forget the pain of puling myself out of bed so early.

When I suggest sunrise shoots, some clients naturally aren’t interested.  But those clients who are keen to use the famous London landmarks as backdrops are more likely to be willing to get up early.

Places like Tower Bridge are empty at sunrise, but completely jam packed the rest of the day.  The streets around the Houses of Parliament are also considerably easier to work in at Sunrise.

3. Keep your equipment on you at all times

When you’re shooting on the street, it’s very easy to get distracted with making sure that you get “the shot”.  It only takes a second for someone to walk by and grab your bag. Every London photographer knows someone who’s had their gear nicked from the street.

Invest in a rucksack or camera bag that doesn’t look your “normal” camera bag.  A clever theif will be able to recognise a camera bag right away and make it even more of a enticing target.  My personal favourite is the Kelly Moore bags and the Fig Bags.

Keep your camera bag on your back at all times, nothing ends a shoot quicker than lack of any camera equipment.

4. Know your temporary art exhibits, structures and street art

London has a whole host of incredible, unusual and fairly temporary backdrops to use for photography.  Keeping up to date with local events, following London street art blogs and instagram accounts can keep you up to date on what’s going on where. Street art tends to congregate in the same areas. East London, in particular Brick Lane and Shoreditch, are always safe bets when looking for interesting street art backdrops.  Columbia Road is a favourite of mine, it has a great mix of colourful shop fronts and houses and street art on the side streets.

My personal favourite are large scale art projects and sculptures, as well as temporary architecture, like the Serpentine Summer Pavilion.   These make for incredible and unique backdrops that are only available for short time.

 

6. Get Some Distance

It can be difficult to use some of the famous London landmarks and locations, especially when the landmark is so big.   It can be hard to get the whole “experience of a place” in one frame.  Places like Tower Bridge, Big Ben, the Barbican, are all easier to photograph from a distance.  So it’s well worth finding little spots that overlook the landmark rather than being right on top of them.  A bit of distance can give you some scale as well.

8. Keep an eye out for pretty back streets 

This is especially helpful for wedding shoots.  Sure the main road is busy, but there may be side residential roads that are nice and quiet.  Google street view is extremely helpful here, as well as doing a site visit or going for a walk about before you start shooting.

Don’t rely on other photographers to tell you what’s a good backdrop and what isn’t.  What may inspire one photographer will bore another.

9. Head out on the weekend 

One of my favourite places to shoot in London is the City of London and the area around Bank Station.  This area during the week, particularly a weekday evening, is completely rammed with commuters and city workers, but on the weekend it’s very quiet.  Here you get the best mix of historical and modern architecture and some very empty back streets.  Knowing what locations are quiet on the weekends and what locations are super busy can save you a world a trouble when trying to

 


 

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Winter Wedding at Froyle Park {Katie & James}

It was freezing cold the day that Katie and James got married.

Poor weather is to be expected  with winter weddings, that’s part of the deal.  But if you plan for it and expect it, then it doesn’t hinder the party at all.  In fact it can help it quite a lot.  All of your guests all snuggled in one room, ready to celebrate and drink away the winter blues.  As I’m sure you can guess, the venue for winter weddings maters quite a lot.  You want to make sure you have loads of space for all of your guests to relax and Katie and James decided to have their wedding reception at the fantastic Froyle Park.

With Winter weddings, light and space are most important, and Froyle park had loads of both.  Even for large weddings, there was plenty of warm indoor space for the guests to mingle about.  There was large windows throughout and so the whole space felt airy, light and open.  It also has loads of historic charm being a country estate to add to the backdrop.  So there was cold weather outside but a party on the inside.

Katie and James, Thank you so much for having myself and my second shooter Marianne along for the day.  You both, and your friends and family were so fantastic to photograph and meet.


These photos are incredible, you have managed to capture some really intimate moments and so much joy. It is so lovely to go through these photos and see how much everyone was enjoying themselves.

We loved having you guys there on the day, lots of our friends have commented on how fun and professional you were. We couldn’t recommend you more highly and will continue to do so!
You really are amazing at what you do so once again THANK YOU” 

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