I am one of the few lucky people that can honestly say “I love my job!” If I wasn’t doing it to earn a living then I would still be doing it as a hobby ... I am a freelance photographer specialising in weddings.
Photography – capturing a moment in time and preserving it forever. Creating visual memories of people, events, landscapes, details ... This is my passion.
When I first set up in business in 2001, I will be honest, I said I never wanted to do wedding photography! It is such a huge responsibility, and I did not feel ready! However, after doing a few “freebies” for people I knew, I began to enjoy it. The more weddings I did the more I began to love doing them. What is not to love? I am taking photos, which is my passion, and I am a part of one the happiest days you can have.
I am so lucky to be a photographer in York. There are so many beautiful venues to work at! I have worked at The Pavilion Hotel in York many times before and love the relaxed and personal feel to it.
I was chuffed to bits when Tina and Andy asked me to be their photographer. Andy is one of my younger brothers! I was determined to do as professional a job as I would for anyone else, but I also wanted to enjoy the day as a guest.
Weddings are the main part of the work that I do, however I am lucky enough to also photograph children and babies. Being a mother myself, I understand the importance of baby photography and child portraits - they grow so fast and change so quickly! Those special times need to be captured forever ...
Baby photography is a real passion of mine. I love it when I get a newborn shoot. If the baby is 10 days old or less it is perfect for the shoot! A really young baby is easier to position, and the younger the better. I totally understand that having just given birth, women have other things to concentrate on - like the baby! - rather than thinking about a photoshoot (I didn't give a professional baby photo shoot a second thought when I had Mia!). However, for the best results, to capture those "crunched up" poses, those beautiful positions with the little legs tucked up and the sleepy head reasting on the tiny hands, 10 days old or less is the key!
I was so pleased to be asked to be Katy and Rich's wedding photographer in York last December, as they are a great couple and very down to earth. I have been a wedding photographer at Aldwark Manor many times before and love the venue. Aldwark Church is equally lovely and it was great getting the bridal shots of Katy at the hotel first, then on to the church for photos of the lads.
Some words of advice to anyone thinking of booking a wedding photographer ... I had an enquiry from a lady the other day who wanted to know how much I charge for wedding photography. I told her (my price is no where near as high as some!) and she said that was way out of her budget. Apparently her friend got married lately and paid only £350 for a full day of photography, plus an album!!! Be aware!
There are an increasing number of people claiming to be wedding photographers, and undercutting the professionals such as myself. I studied at college for 4 years and have been in business for 13 years now. You pay for quality and experience. I am not saying everyone cheap is no good - all businesses have to start somewhere.....
Julie and Paul's day was amazing! A great couple and Julie's dress was just beautiful - got some awesome floaty shots! I love The Crab and Lobster as a venue - so quirky and different. The venue, combined with the dress and flowers, and the other attention to details, made this a unique day - very individual and fab, perfect for Julie and Paul!
Emma and Clive's day was lovely - a nice fine and bright day amongst many wet ones this summer! Haxby is a place very close to my heart having grown up there, as is the Merchant Taylors Hall, with my mum and dad having married there ...
So, a fab day - great and personal venues, and a brilliant couple to work with and lovely family. The MT Hall is typical York with the old beams, which I love, especially in b/w. Emma and Clive arrived in Emma's old car which had been done up and it made some fab shots! We called off on route to the reception to Emma's parents house to get some shots with the dogs!
Becky and Will's day was fabulous! I was really looking forward to working at two new venues, and they did not disappoint. The weather was a little too rainy, but although we had to do the group shots inside, Becky, Will and I were able to get out later for some beautiful bride and groom shots.
Will and the guys looked great in top hats, and Becky was alsolutely stunning. The reception venue was amazing, and had been kindly lent for the occassion by the owners who know Will. A brilliant day, and a lovely couple!
I have done two weddings at The Parsonage, Escrick, lately and they have both been fabulous! I am so lucky to work with such lovely people at such great venues! Sarah and Gareth's day was perfect, and even the rain did not spoil anything!
Group shots had to be done in the conservatory instead of outside, but it is a lovely room, and luckily we were able to go outside for more bride and groom shots after the meal. A great couple and the best "hen party" dance I have ever seen!
St Stephen's Church, Acomb, is one of my favourite churches in York. I particularly love the interior and the shot from the balcony looking down on the ceremony. A second venue I love is the Parsonage at Escrick, so, combined with a lovely down to earth couple, and good weather, it was a perfect day!
My only problem was that I saw so many great shots at each venue, I didn't have enough time to get all I wanted before the meal started! Luckily, I was booked up until the first dance, so we got some extra shots of Lynsey and Matt in the evening. A fantastic day!
The Pavilion Hotel in York is a lovely venue, cosy and personal, and it is always a pleasure to work there. It has such a nice feel to the place, and there are so many quirky corners for photos, I could shoot all day! Andrea and Wayne are a great couple and their big day was relaxed and fun.
This is a wedding I did in 2011, but it is still one of my favourites. Carlton Towers near Selby is featuring in a Sky Atlantic show called The Guest Wing, so I felt it appropiate to show some of my images from there.
It is a stunning venue, very grand and quite gothic looking. Kelly and Rob are a lovely couple, very down to earth and easy to get on with. I hope to have the pleasure of doing many more weddings at Carlton Towers in the future.
A perfect villiage in spring, a lovely laid back couple, a nice warm day but not too sunny - the perfect start to my busy wedding season! Congratulations to Becky and Pat - it was a real honour to be a part of your special day.
I often get asked "how many group shots should we have on the day?"
I always meet at length beforehand with each couple to go through all the group shots they would like on the big day. It is very difficult to put a number on the amount of group shots to go for, but I do prefer it when they are kept to a fairly small number, as this gives me more time to spend with the bride and groom, as well as capturing those informal moments which make each wedding unique. If you don't want to spend hours posing, I would suggest a good selection would be as follows:
Groom, bestman and ushers
Bride and bridesmaids
Full bridal party
B, G and her parents
B, G and her immediate family
B, G and his parents
B, G and his immediate family
B and girls
G and lads
Of course, all families are different, but if the above list is used as a basis, and possibly a few more added to it, the formal photos will not take over the day, and will leave the photographer with plenty of time to concentrate on the bride and groom shots, as well as having time to capture the candid stuff.
I always compile a full photo list with timings, which is approved by the couple beforehand, so we all know what is happening, when and how long it will take.
Obviously the photos are a very important part of the day, but they do not need to take over everthing else. If the photos can be relaxed and natural , not only are they more enjoyable for everyone on the day, but the shots produced look much better. My advice to anyone about to make a list of the group shots they want would be to write down all the ones you "think you should have" and halve it!