I talk a lot on this blog of the importance of wedding photography as a collaborative art with the rest of the wedding professional team. My background in theatre has become invaluable to the process in that I understand that I'm just a piece of the puzzle and must communicate and cooperate with everyone else involved. We must all work at the top of our game and support each other to help deliver a seamless production for our couples, leaving very little to chance, preparing for every eventuality and staying felxible for anything beyond our control. If we all work together as a unit and communicate, very little can seem insurmountable on the day.
But weddings, by their very nature, can be unpredictable and go 'off-script' as it were. Sometimes the best thing I can do as a wedding photographer is make it a point to nurture the relationships I have with other vendors in advance so that on the day regardless of how things are going, I have the backup of pals and colleagues. One of those key relationships is that with one of the few who will actually be there with me on the day: the venue.
I first landed at the stunning Standish wedding venue, Ashfield House, in April of this year. I had booked to second shoot the wonderful Debbie & Darran's wedding for Jonny Draper on the 1st of May but that night I was there exhibiting at an open evening alongside several other vendors including Kerry Baker MUA and the Rose Boutique, both of whom were going to be working on Debbie and Darran's wedding. From the minute I walked in the door (and was totally blown away by this incredible space), I was welcomed into the fold by manager extraordinaire Katie Street and introduced to the other professionals bustling around the place. The wonderfully warm and talen
ted Kerry made it a point of giving me her guided tour, complete with a visit to the impeccable bridal prep suite, the kitchen (where we snagged some chocolate, obvs) and the ceremony room that had been dressed as a wedding floral dream by the lovely Sarah Crookston of The Rose Boutique. I was totally blown away and couldn't wait for my chance to shoot with Jonny in just a week's time.
Debbie & Darran's big day was a crash course in wedding collaboration and teamwork. I've already blogged once about my experience on that amazing day so I won't rehash the details but I fell head over heels in love with this space and how everyone who works there pulls off the perfect wedding day for their couples. So when I received a message from Katie asking if I'd be interested in displaying at another open evening, this time with 6 more months of experience under my belt I asked straight away where I could sign up. Even better that Katie and Kerry dreamed up the idea of a bit of an unconventional styled shooton the day with myself, Teri of Teresa C Photography and Sarah from the Rose Boutique showing off the various spaces on the property, shot by two very different photographers who are familiar with and love the space.
We borrowed dresses from the fabulous Emma at Love Bridal Boutique, makeup was done by Rachel Marsh (sadly Kerry was unable to attend on the day but Rachel stuck true to Kerry's vision and was awesome!) and Mairead of Wedlocks Bridal Hair sorted our coifs. It was fun playing dress up but I really really loved shooting the gorgeous Teri. After spending all day (and into the evening) at Ashfield House, I know that going forward it feels great to have a venue (and team) feel as much like home as anything can in this crazy industry. Even better was working with people I know I can trust and rely on, regardless of what pops up! Here are my images of the day. Enjoy! x