Being a documentary wedding photographer is much easier when there are loads of people around. When I found out that Charlotte and Ricky’s wedding in High Wycombe had 16 guests, I was a little worried. Documentary wedding photography demands that you blend in with the crowd, you become like a bridesmaid with a camera. Or maybe a groomsman in my case. It helped that every one of the 16 guests was super friendly and easy to talk to. First though, there was bridal prep, at Charlotte’s house in Reading. Charlotte and Ricky had a beautiful little boy who was a page boy for the day. He really livened everything up and made getting some great pictures easy.
The Ceremony – High Wycombe Registry Office
There are positive and negative points to wedding photography at a registry office. The positives are that generally they don’t put any restrictions on the photography apart from avoiding photographing the actual register signing. You can use flash if you want, but these are modern, well lit buildings. Unless your gear is shocking, you shouldn’t need flash. The downsides are that you usually have less space to work in, and it’s not as atmospheric as an old English Church. However, my job as the wedding photographer is to make the best of every venue, so I did! This was actually a pretty nice registry office and the lighting was ok too. I started by getting a quick portrait of Ricky ( on the right ), and his best man. They were both beaming the whole time, and it just made the ceremony really good fun. I love it when weddings are like this, full of happy people, that is how it should be.
The Old Bell in High Wycombe – reception
After a brief dabble with confetti ( see above! ) we were off the wedding reception in High Wycombe. The reception venue was a beautiful old English pub called the Old Bell. It backs onto the Thames and in the summer the garden is glorious. It was actually a bit too hot, which is rarity for English weddings. I felt a little bit sorry for the groomsmen in particular as they had quite heavy looking waistcoats on. The wedding breakfast was a lovely relaxed meal in the garden with the 16 guests. Because there were so few people, I took a different approach to normal. My standard approach to documentary wedding photography is to blend in with the crowd, using quiet, small cameras. This approach wouldn’t work with so few guests so I engaged more with them than I normally would, and tried to become a wedding guest, but with a camera. Here are some of the shots.
Before everyone headed off for the evening party I grabbed some of them for some family shots down by the Thames. The formals are not really my thing, but I can still make a decent job of them and I do understand their importance.
The Evening Party
For the final part of the wedding day there was an after party with a live singer. There were a lot more evening guests than the daytime party so I could do my standard documentary wedding thing and hide in the crowd. The wedding party was in High Wycombe still but at a slightly smaller pub down the road. As it was evening light I did break out the flash every now and then to light things a bit more evenly.
Needless to say, a good time was had by all. The whole day was a beautiful, informal, relaxed wedding day and as it was near Reading I only had a 20 minute drive home! Thanks for reading, if you want to inquire about booking a me to document your wedding day, please go back to www.croshawphotography.com and scroll down to the Let’s Chat section.