Soho London Engagement Shoot | Emma + Roxy

Soho London Engagement Shoot | Emma + Roxy

Is there much point booking in an engagement shoot if we are only in London for a few days before our wedding? Well Hell to the Yes there is! Taking an hour or so out to hang out with me and doing some hugging with your lover is just what you need to combat all the busy, busy stuff just before the wedding. So even if you’ve only just got a few days, let’s make the effort to meet up.

 

The very adorable Emma and Roxy had not long landed from San Francisco and to fit in with their schedule, I arranged to meet them at Wah Nails. We grabbed a quick coffee before taking a stroll around London’s Soho. It was of course utterly packed, as it always is but there are always little secret alley ways and cosy corners that can be found to make London your own for a few moments.


I am the BLANK PAGE before you, I am the fine idea you crave. I live and breathe under the moon and when you cross that bridge I’ll come and find you …


Brighton Couple Shoot | Aisling + Jon

Brighton Couple Shoot | Aisling + Jon

Sometimes I mentor other wedding photographers and one of the areas that they can struggle with most is directing couples. This is probably my favourite part, so I’m always happy to go out with a fellow photographer and help them find their mojo with it. I asked on my Facebook page for a couple who’d be happy to be shot for a recent mentor session and my sister in law Aisling messaged me saying would be weird for her and my husband’s brother Jon to do it. No weirder than it is with anyone, I replied. Let’s face it, hardly any of us love the process of being photographed and that’s why it can be challenging.

 

So I tried to forget that I already know quite a lot about these two and treated it like any other couple shoot. We headed to my local woods, where I walk the dog to see what we could come up. It was actually lovely to get to know more about their story, just hang out and create a set of images that reflect where they are at with their relationship right now. And that is all couple or engagement shoots need to be, nothing awkward, scary or a chore to be ticked off the wedding to-do list. Just hanging out with me, maybe climbing a tree and definitely  hugging.. quite a lot of hugging!


Dressed up to the eyes, it’s a wonderful surprise to see your shoes and your spirits rise. Throwing out your frown and just SMILING at the sound …


Rainy Day London Engagement | Tanya + Tanios

Rainy Day London Engagement | Tanya + Tanios

You know those days when London just turns grey and rainy, when the drizzle is relentless? Yes that is what we were working with for Tanya and Tanios’s Engagement Shoot. ‘Don’t worry!’ I said, ‘we can just shoot in your hotel room’. Well if you ever wondered where the smallest hotel room in London is, I can now happily let you know. The ‘room’ was quite literally a bed, a very lovely bed but space was not a luxury afforded to us. I do like a challenge so it was time to see what I could come up with in just few square meters.

 

When the rain still did not stop (relentless is like that) we braved the outside. This gorgeous pair live in Dubai and said they’d just left behind temperatures in the 40s so they were pretty gung-ho about the weather in London. ‘Refreshing’ they called it. Well one thing that I do love is that rain clears the streets of other people and you can find pretty streets like this one with hardly another soul around. And another thing, I have never shot an Engagement in bad weather where the Wedding Day did not turn out to be great weather #truefact.


You’re a FALLING STAR, you’re the get away car, you’re the line in the sand when I go too far …


West Witterings Engagement Shoot | Emily + Dan

West Witterings Engagement Shoot | Emily + Dan

When it comes to engagement shoots, it is just lovely if we can do them in a place that has significance to you. Think of them as a date that I just happen to be along for, rather than one more thing to tick off the dreaded List Of Things We Need To Do Before The Wedding. Emily and Dan came up with meeting at West Wittering beach in Sussex. A place that they spend as much time as they can and it is a super pretty location for photos.

 

If the weather is good, this place is packed out and it’s easy to see why. It’s such a pretty spot and perfect for an early evening romantic stroll. Luckily they knew a quieter part of it, although there was a giant helicopter flying overhead for the whole time! I loved hanging out with this pair. A pre-wedding shoot is good for you to take a little bit of time out from all the planning and just connect with each other again. And for me, I love getting to know you that little bit more.


Only hold till your coffee warms but don’t hurry and speed. Once a time put a tongue in your ear on THE BEACH and you clutched clinging heels …


London At Home Engagement | Jacki + Greg

London At Home Engagement | Jacki + Greg

The process of creating photos of people never fails to fascinate me. I often deal with clients who tell me that they hate being photographed. Maybe we are that generation that was brought up on cringey school photos dutifully purchased every year and placed on the mantlepiece. To us photography was often a thing to fear, an opportunity to invite ridicule. Brits seem to be the worst, just try herding 100 of them into a group photo when absolutely nobody wants to be the first one in. I’m seriously contemplating training up a sheepdog! I expect things will be very different for those brought up in the digital age. Having just spent a weekend hosting 8 twelve year olds at a birthday sleepover, I can tell you that there are never enough selfies to be taken.

But currently, a lot of the process for me is to find ways to help people feel more natural in photos. I met up with Jacki and Greg at their flat in London for their Engagement Shoot. They soon told me that while Jacki (Australian) quite enjoys being in photos, Greg really, really doesn’t. For me these shoots shown me what I’m working with ahead of the wedding day and they are invaluable to get an insight into personalities as well as a chance to figure out your angles. So by the time we get to wedding portraits, it can all feel more natural. This pair are actually very photogenic and I’m looking forward to the wedding (The dog is going to carry the rings!). Greg assures me that he is actually much better in photos when he has had a drink or two!


And this time I know it’s FOR REAL, the feelings that I feel. I know if I put my mind to it, I know that I really can do it …


Brighton Engagement Shoot | Gini + Marc

Brighton Engagement Shoot | Gini + Marc

There is something so very decadent about whiling away the afternoon in a good old fashioned pub so that is exactly where we headed when Gini and Marc came down to Brighton for their engagement shoot. Over some beers, they told me that their wedding has been planned to mark the first anniversary of their first meeting. Marc is a Brit living in Switzerland who was on a business trip to the US where he crossed paths with Gini who has now loved to Europe to be with him.

 

Yes this pair are literally a whirlwind! After catching up on their wedding plans (which is happening tomorrow!) we started their shoot right there in the cosy, dark corner of the pub. That’s the other lovely thing about pubs in the afternoon, they are not so busy and nobody pays any attention when you have a little smooch with your lover. But we did also venture out to the Pavilion Gardens before they left to celebrate Marc’s birthday.


Since you’ve been gone, I’ve been lost without a trace. I DREAM at night, I can only see your face. I look around but it’s you I can’t replace…


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