“Watch the birdie”

If I had to limit myself to just one category of photography, it would have to be people.

Although to accurately capture someone’s face in a photograph can be one of the most difficult requests for a photographer.

We once went along to a bride’s house on her wedding morning, and the very first thing she said was “I don’t want you to take my photo. Nobody has ever taken a good picture of me”
This despite the fact that we’d all had a very happy meeting to discuss the wedding when they came to book the date.

She was nervous. So I spent time taking photos of her dogs in the garden, whilst she got her wedding dress on. She came out in the same anxious state, so I showed her the photos of the dogs in the garden, which she loved, and promised her that I wouldn’t take photos of her until she was absolutely ready. Then Rob and I nipped off to the church to await her arrival…..
She arrived, in a gorgeous vintage motor, complete with the same unhappy face.
The Rector welcomed her warmly. Poor man. She blanked him. 

I gently suggested we put her veil down over her face and she stood for me to help her. There was absolutely no talking to her.

You would have thought she was on her way to the gallows. The Rector and I exchanged slight shrugs, I mouthed to him “She’s very nervous” and he nodded.

In church, I crept up the side aisle and tucked myself behind the font, with a long lens on the camera, in the hope of getting some candid shots without spoiling the congregation’s view of proceedings. The bride looked shaky throughout the opening of the ceremony, then after her almost inaudible vows were given, and the rings were duly slipped into place, her face lit up and she was transformed.

Big smiles, Snap! Great shots from there on. The wedding took place at Kingskerswell Church, where Wedding Parties are taken in at the North Door, and dispatched through the opposite South Door. Any onlooker witnessing this Bride’s arrival and departure may well have assumed it to be two different people, and from that point on the day was full of smiles and joy.