Bride & Groom walking through confetti tunnel on Millbridge Court terrace

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Clare & Carl's Wedding Photofilm!

This is quite a special wedding for me for a number of reasons. Clare & Carl treated me like one of the family from the moment we met, I had an absolute blast with them and all of their friends, they bought me a beer when we first met (a perfectly legitimate reason to love a couple). But it's also because their wedding was the birth of my Photofilms!

If you've been following my work for a while you will know that natural, unposed, documentary photography is what I'm passionate about. I believe that wedding photography shouldn't get in the way or distract from your day. Ever since I launched my Silent Movies about 2 years ago, I've been trying to come up with the next step...

And it finally happened, a few weeks before Clare & Carl's wedding. So I messaged them explaining my idea for a Silent Movie with Audio, or Photofilm as I now call them, and asked if they minded being guinea pigs for me... Fortunately, they trusted me and loved the results.

"For people like us who wanted to hear people’s voices during the important bits, but didn’t want a full videographer it’s perfect!"

- Clare & Carl

I knew I needed to take the same approach to record audio as I do with photography - unobtrusive. So, other than a small discrete mic, that is only worn during the ceremony & speeches, there are no other intrusions from me. It's business as usual on the day - you do what you do and I'll do what I do 😉

These photofilms are a new and unique way to remember your wedding. The best way I can describe them is "a mashup of documentary photography, stop-motion images, and recorded audio." The best way for you to see what I'm talking about is to check out the video above 😉

Millbridge Court A Stylish, Exclusive Use Wedding Venue

A restored 19th-century house on the Surrey - Hampshire border, surrounded by lush green fields and a wildflower meadow, Millbridge Court is one stunning wedding venue. Stylishly decorated throughout there isn't much you need to do to this venue. There are also eight bedrooms plus a Hideaway cabin at the bottom of the garden.

Getting Wedding Ready at Millbridge Court

Clare and her Bridal Party got ready in the Loft. It's out of the way of arriving guests and has plenty of room for hair and make-up stations. Plus there's a sneaky little one-way window which was really handy for spying on people downstairs.

The Hideaway is a cute log-cabin at the bottom of the garden. This is where Carl got ready, and where Clare & Carl would be spending their wedding night. With its own little deck overlooking the meadows and a free-standing copper bath, it's a really cute place to spend your wake up on your first morning as a married couple.

Carl was a little nervous, but no more than is normal. Once ready we headed up to the house to meet the rest of the Groomsmen to hand out ties etc. One of Carl's Ushers made the mistake of wearing camouflage on the stag do, and everyone ripped him for it. So, as a joke, Carl switched his tie, with a camo tie.

I left the boys having a beer in the sunshine and headed back up to Clare in the Loft. The atmosphere was electric, nerves and excitement were bubbling over... And the champagne was flowing nicely too!

Surrey Outdoor Wedding Ceremony

At Millbridge Court wedding ceremonies can be held inside or outside. The hall has a high vaulted ceiling with floor-to-ceiling windows and exposed wooden beams. If the weather isn't ideal this would still be a gorgeous ceremony room...

Clare & Carl chose to get married outside, underneath the oak Arbour. Which I was super chuffed to hear as outdoor ceremonies are my absolute favourite! Surrounded by trees, fields, their closest friends & family and the sound of birds singing it was a gorgeous ceremony.

Carl was a tad emotional while waiting for Clare, which seemed to set off a chain reaction amongst the guests... And encouraged a little bit of heckling from the crowd 😉

Drinks Receptions In The Garden

The Terrace is situated between the two halls and reminds me of Italian Courtyards. This combined with the garden is the ideal space to celebrate with a cocktail or two - which is exactly what Clare & Carl chose to do. The sun was shining, Catherine Wright provided background music and the cocktails were flowing nicely.

Great Food & Hilarious Speeches

After the wedding breakfast, which I can honestly say was one of the nicest meals I've ever had at a wedding (thanks Kalm Kitchen), it was time for the speeches. The Father of the Bride & Groom both made great speeches and the Best Men absolutely killed it. If you've watched the Photofilm above, I trimmed a lot of the more risqué material out of that!

It's all about the last dance...

I don't think I've ever met a couple who are looking forward to their first dance. That could be because the couples I tend to photograph generally aren't mad keen on being the centre of attention or just that the act of having a romantic dance while your mates watch is inherently a bit weird.

For me it's all about the last dance - that's where the magic happens. It's the last dance where everyone is drunk relaxed and on an absolute high. It's the crescendo, the finale, the climax of the day if you will... I always leave a wedding on a massive high when I've stayed until the very end.

Seen something you like?

Venue: Millbridge Court | Hair Stylist: Gemma Sutton | Makeup Artist: Melissa Bourne | Makeup Artist #2: Jo Hamilton | Flowers: Lily Lupin | Cake: Little Cake Garden | Caterers: Kalm Kitchen | Wedding Dress: Morgan Davies | Bridesmaid Dress Designer: Ruby Violet | D.J. & Sax: Dan Goode | Singer: Catherine Wright Events

Planning On Popping The Question?

If you’re planning on asking your partner to marry you, have a quick look at my Secret Proposal Photography and get in touch…

Relaxed Farm Wedding Venue in the Ribble Valley

If you fancy getting married in an informal, unique wedding venue, then Bashall Barn could be the one for you! There's always a really nice, relaxed atmosphere here. The (recently extended) terrace, is perfect for taking in the stunning views over the Ribble Valley, as well as playing a few outdoor games!

Bashall Barn is an exclusive use wedding venue and last orders aren't until 12:30 - I really like here! Oh, the food is really good and there's an ice cream bar too 😉

Natural Documentary Wedding Photography

I'm passionate about capturing the atmosphere of your day and creating images that reflect that. This means that I rarely use flash anywhere other than the dance-floor. As soon as that flash goes off everyone knows you're taking a photo. And once you add an additional light source, it changes the mood and atmosphere of the photo.

Therefore if you get married in a dramatic industrial venue like Victoria Warehouse, then your images should reflect that. Likewise, if you choose somewhere like Bashall Barn, with their floor-to-ceiling glass doors, flooding the rooms with natural light then that's how your photos should look. Working with available, ambient light is really important for my wedding photography.

Kelly & Noel's Lancashire Wedding

It was an absolute pleasure to be part of Kelly & Noel's wedding. They involved their friends, family, and crammed a lot of their personalities into their day. There were so many little touches that all added up to create a down-to-earth, incredibly personal and welcoming atmosphere.

We'd spoken briefly on the phone before they decided I was the one for them, but as I'm based in North Wales, we didn't get to meet until a little while later. We arranged a day for me to come up and meet them at the venue for a chat and a bit of a walkthrough of their plans. I remember leaving Bashall Barn that day and knowing they were going to be a great laugh!

Getting Ready at Sparth House Hotel, Clayton-le-Moors

I got such a warm welcome when I arrived in the morning. Kelly and her bridesmaids were all doing their own make-up, and Kelly had organised a close friend to do their hair. So everyone already knew each other well - the atmosphere in the room was electric! Everyone was so excited!

That doesn't mean that there weren't tears though... Because there were plenty! I'm sure Kelly's Mum was crying before she even got into the room. And well after that, it was a bit of a chain reaction! Fortunately, they got it out of their system before they had finished their make-up.

Great Harwood, Church Wedding Ceremony

Kelly & Noel got married at Our Lady and Saint Hubert's Catholic Church - which is one beautiful church. I arrived and met Noel, who was within the normal levels of anxiousness and excitement. The sun was shining and it was set to be a beautiful day.

They had a lovely ceremony and afterwards, they left in a shower of bubbles to avoid the church's confetti clean up fee 😉

Bashall Barn Wedding Reception

Once all the guests were inside Bashall Barn, we snuck off through the car park to get a couple of photos just Kelly, Noel and Pendle Hill.
It was then time for the celebrations to begin! Sunshine, welcome drinks, canapés and mini skittles on the terrace, while one of their friends played the piano. It was perfect. Once the congratulations had died down a bit, we nipped around the corner for a few photos in the cowshed.

When it was time for the wedding breakfast, one guest per table discovered a personalised apron and a message waiting for them. They were responsible for playing host and dishing out the main course - a great big pie!

After the speeches, everyone moved through to the front bar for ice cream and disco dancing!

Munch Rock Bashall Barn Wedding Party!

I've said it before, and I'll say it again... I'm a big fan of live music. In my opinion, you can't beat a band for getting the energy levels up in an evening. And Munch sure kicked out the jams! They provided the perfect soundtrack for an evening of shots, cigar smoking, motorboating, and epic drunken dance moves. Needless to say, I had a lot of fun!

Bashall Barn Silent Wedding Movie

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Watch the whole thing in Fast Forward?

My Silent Movies are a fast paced, high octane ride through of one of the most important days of your life… Yeah, they're a bit rough around the edges, (hence the Raw, dirty & uncut tag line) but that's all part of their charm.

Follow this link for more info on my Silent Movies & Photofilms

Seen Something You Like?

Venue & Catering: Bashall Barn | Make-Up: DIY | Hair: Family Friend | Flowers: DIY | Dress: Wed2B | Shoes: Betsey Johnson 'Blue' | Suits: Moss Bros |Videography: Pete Johnson Films | Band: Munch

Thinking about popping the question?

If you’re planning on asking your partner to marry you, have a quick look at my Secret Proposal Photography

Bride & Groom leaving tipi, arm in arm with guests waving sparklers

Bride & Groom leaving tipi, arm in arm with guests waving sparklers

Yorkshire Wedding Photographer

Lucy & Chris got married in Lucy's home town of Terrington, a cute village about 25 minutes outside of York. I remember arriving the day before and thinking, "wow this place is nice!". Of course, it helped that the sun was shining, but I can't help but think this place would look great even on the dreariest of days.

I parked outside the church, and after a quick look around, wandered down to Terrington School, where they were having their tipi reception. You can see for miles across the valley from the school field, and on a hot summers day, it was truly stunning.

Lucy was getting ready in her family home, just a stones throw from the church. I'm a big fan of keeping things local on a wedding day. Being able to walk from place to place means no traffic or parking stress, so this was ideal for me. But selfish agendas aside, it fits the feel of their wedding perfectly. Walking, villages, fields, tipis and long summer days all go hand in hand...

Relaxed Bridal Prep At Home

bridesmaid sitting on a bed with giant teddy while bride puts makeup on another bridesmaid

I arrived in the morning to a warm welcome and quickly settled in. Despite Lucy having the most detailed plan of the day, she was calm and relaxed, in fact, everyone was. Lucy and her bridesmaids were doing their own makeup while Katie from Reflections Hair Design was in charge of hair. The morning went smoothly and I even got chance to catch up with Chris and his Bestmen while they finished off decorating the tipi. Perhaps the key to a relaxed wedding day is planning after all 😉

Village Church Wedding Ceremony

Bride & Groom leaving the church with big smiles just married

So, after a few group shots, we headed to the church – just two minutes walk down the road. Friends from the village gathered outside the church to offer some last minute best wishes.

Chris' Bestmen were waiting at the church doors for the bridal party. The bestman walked down the aisle arm in arm with the bridesmaids. I'm assuming this is the case, but by walking down together it gave the impression that Lucy & Chris were surrounded by one big group of friends – and I really liked that.

One of the many things I like about photographing weddings all over the country (rather than just North Wales), is the different traditions that different regions have. In Yorkshire it's common for the village youths to tie the church gates closed, the groom then has to chuck them a couple of quid, for the gates to be untied. So, that's always a bit of fun!

Papa Kata Tipi Wedding Reception

Bridesmaids celebrating after catching the bouquet

Once out of the gates and the congratulations had calmed down, we headed down the lane, through a confetti tunnel, to the tipi and those stunning views!

The afternoon was absolutely perfect, canapés and Pimms in the sunshine, with lawn games and a "selfie flower wall". Incidentally, I still have dreams about Bears Pantry's scotch eggs! Crispy outside, warm runny yolk, and tangy brown sauce... Heaven.

The speeches are almost always my favourite part of a wedding. I know that might be a little controversial for a photographer to say, but it's true. I get to learn so much more about a couple, and I love that. Wedding Photography is a personal business! Plus there are so many reactions and emotions to capture in a short space of time.

All the speeches were brilliant. The perfect balance between banter and sincerity. But one speech stole the show for me... If I ran a "speech of the year" award it would be going to Chris. And that's saying something because his best men absolutely killed it. It's very rare for a Groom to make a speech that can take on a Bestman's speech, but Chris did it. Although, as he went after his Bestmen, he may have had a slight advantage. I'm also not counting the live performance of a song that the Bestmen wrote especially for Chris, as that was a surprise just before their first dance. So, perhaps it should be a draw.

I particularly like Tipi Weddings because they naturally create a relaxed, fun and down-to-earth vibe. They're also perfect for a good party! And boy did these guys know how to party! Their evening was filled with shots, dance-offs, drunken limbo competitions, crazy dance moves and topped off with a sparkler exit!

Natural, Unposed, Wedding Photography

natural portrait of Bride & Groom in Yorkshire

My style of documentary photography is all about telling a story. It's a mix of being in amongst the action (without getting in the way) and observing from the sidelines.

All the images you see here, and on my website for that matter, are 100% unposed. Other than the family group shots, the only direction I had on Lucy & Chris’ wedding was asking if they wanted a few photos, just the two of them. They did. So I suggested they take a wander around the field – but that was it.

No awkward posing or forced smiles. I’m not invisible, so I know they knew they were being photographed, but I hope that they were comfortable enough around me that it didn’t matter.

Silent Wedding Movie

Raw, Dirty & Uncut. My Silent Wedding Movies are a fast paced, high action run-through of one of the most important days of your life. They're made up from the thousands of photographs I take during a wedding and are a great way to relive your wedding – or Lucy & Chris'...

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See something you like?

Tipi Hire: Papa Kata | Hair Stylist: Reflections Hair Design | Florist: The Topiary Tree | DJ: The Hi-Life | Caterers: Bears Pantry

Planning on "popping" the question?

surprise proposal on Llanddwyn Island, Anglesey, North Wales

If you're planning on asking your partner to marry you, have a quick look at my Secret Proposal Photography...

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