The Harrogate Registry Office is such a beautiful little room, perfect for small intimate ceremonies. This was from the first wedding I was ever asked to shoot, and I was so nervous having just purchased a 28-70 f2.8 lens. What I didn't realise then was that the crop factor made it closer to a 45-105 and found myself backing up and banging into things constantly to try and fill the frame. I've fortunately learnt from that now!
Simon and Emily chose the beautiful Christchurch on the Stray to get married, and then onto the Crown Hotel in the evening. Having worked in the Hotel Industry around Harrogate for a number of years, Simon knew the staff and you could see just how much he appreciated the attention given to weddings at The Crown. You'd think when planning a wedding for August that you'd be fairly guaranteed a beautiful sunny hot day. However the British weather has never been predictable, and you cannot presume anything!
The reason I mention the weather is the torrential downpour that happened just as Emily and Simon stepped out of the Church. I mean I've not seen rain like it! It absolutely lashed it down for about 20 minutes. Emily and Simon took it completely in their stride though, took the umbrellas and just stood there smiling. Guests however scattered far and wide as the rain came bouncing off the headstones surrounding the church, I have to say it was rather amusing to watch as people cowered under shared umbrella. Having water sealed cameras helps in situations like this I can tell you! As does having a change of clothes in the car!
I've said this many times about choosing a documentary wedding photographer, but you could see it in Emily and Simon's faces as the rain came pouring down. No worry about fitting in hundreds of formals, no concern about a 2 hour portrait shoot, just rolling with the day and whatever challenges may come. They knew that their photographs would reflect the exact experience they had on the day, not a glammed up "cover all blemishes" photographers representation of the day, but something real that would conjure up real memories. I always love how my couples can just be actually present on their wedding day and not worrying about fitting photographs in.
This was an images from Becky and Robert's Bridge Hotel Wedding in Wetherby that really showed me what the power of shadows could do in photography. It’s very easy to fall into the trap of wanting everything clear and bright when exposing an image, but that’s not always what’s required. Part of the beauty of being a photographer is picking and choosing the best exposure to tell the story in front of you.