Although I mainly post documentary or reportage images of the weddings I’ve worked on on my blog, don’t be fooled by thinking that I don’t shoot bride and groom portraits, or group shots – I do! Most of my clients simply wish for these parts of the day to be short and sweet, so that they can concentrate on enjoying their wedding day with their friends and family. And, although wedding portraits are typically carried out in the afternoon reception, this isn’t always the case – as at this lovely wedding day at Clevedon Hall in North Somerset.
This truly international wedding brought friends and family from Germany and China (as well as plenty of other places!) to Somerset to celebrate with the couple, who had also held a formal wedding ceremony in Germany. On this particular wedding day, the couple not only had a ‘first look’ before the wedding ceremony, but also then wished for their formal portraits to be taken prior to the ceremony, too – leaving the rest of the day free to celebrate.
Although the gardens of Clevedon Hall are truly glorious, in reality the weather wasn’t quite showing them off to best effect – but at least it wasn’t raining! We also had to employ a level of subterfuge, as the couples’ wedding guests were also arriving at Clevedon Hall whilst we were taking the photographs… and of course, we didn’t want to spoil the surprise of what the bride was wearing.
Although a ‘first look’ isn’t a common thing in British weddings, it’s well worth considering. You might think that it removes the impact of the moment that the bride walks down the aisle to her soon-to-be-husband… but I know that certainly in this case, there was no shortage of emotion, anticipation and excitement during those moments as the bride descended the stairs with her father on her arm and made her way to where she was about to be married.
So here are a few of those formal portraits we shot before the wedding ceremony – although ‘formal’ probably isn’t quite the right word, for I always keep these sessions enjoyable and as relaxed as possible. Every moment of a wedding day is there to be enjoyed, after all!
Clevedon Hall Wedding Photographer : Bride and Groom Portraits
Click on any image to open a lightbox and scroll through the photographs. Easy!