Reasons to hire a wedding photographer

I happened to read a blog post recently “Planning your wedding? Here’s 5 ways to save money without sacrificing style.” They had written about buying a pre-loved gown, having your wedding out of season and in one venue with a buffet instead of the traditional “sit down” meal. It was suggestion number four that stopped me in my tracks “Get someone you know to do the photography.” Even just typing this makes my blood run cold! Unless your “someone” is a photographer who does this for a living then my answer would be no, don’t do it. And so on this note here are some reasons to hire a wedding photographer:

 

Reasons to hire a wedding photographer

Many of the moments during your wedding day will only happen once and many will be spontaneous. You have to trust that these key moments will have been photographed. A professional will have attended many ceremonies and know where to be (not to be), when and will be one step ahead of the game. They will have experience in taking photographs in low lit churches without using flash and within seconds of walking into a room know exactly where to stand and where the best light is. This will also be because a professional photographer will have either worked at this venue before or have been to do a recce well in advance.

 

Reasons to hire a photographer

What if the friend with the nice camera doesn’t get all the shots you wanted throughout the day because they were catching up with your mutual friends from Uni? This could put a huge strain on your relationship. You invite friends and family to your wedding because you want them to celebrate with you. What happens if this person has one to many glasses of bubbly? It’s not a pressure I would bestow on any of my pals.

 

Reasons to hire a wedding photographer

All weddings are highly emotional events. There are lots of things going on and loved ones wanting to help but sometimes this can be quite stressful. Having someone there that can tell you it will be okay and taking control of the situation will be great for diffusing any atmosphere caused. A photographer will be used to being the unbiased third party and is good at thinking on their feet. Maybe Aunty “Barbara” is being a little over baring? Well a professional photographer would maybe ask her to go ahead to the reception whilst we do the couple shots you wanted. Last thing you want is too look stressed on your big day photos.

 

Reasons to hire a photographer

There is SO much more to being a photographer than pointing and shooting. We are artists. You will be investing in artwork. We use the things around us (things you have maybe spent over a year planning and putting together) to make a bigger picture. So all the small details you have agonised over, taken out and put back in – they will all be there long after the band have packed up and left! We reveal emotions and you can relive the whole day over and over. This takes experience.

 

Reasons to hire a wedding photographer

 

A wedding photographer will be 100% committed to you, your story and your pictures. You will work closely with your photographer before the wedding so that on the day everyone (the three of you) will know what is required – the commitment works both ways. As I mentioned we are artists and so we make sure ties are straight, buttonholes are pinned and lipstick isn’t smudged – all part of the commitment for perfect photos.

Back in October 2014 I wrote a post about a then recently married Bride who hated every single one of her wedding day photo’s because she didn’t think she would be able to afford a “proper one.” Such a shame and I wouldn’t wish this upon anyone.

Other than the wedding gown and the rings, the photography is the only wedding expense that you get to keep forever. There are so many more reasons to hire a wedding photographer but I hope this post has given you some food for thought?

You can contact me here if you want to know more about my packages or personal quotes.

 

 

 

 

 

Creative Photoshoot

Before leaving Herefordshire I wanted to do one last creative photoshoot. By this time I didn’t have time to plan a full wedding shoot so I trawled through Pinterest looking for idea’s. Any of you that use Pinterest know how easy it is to get completely sucked in and sidetracked! Well this time wasn’t any different. My initial brief was maybe to have an urban ballet shoot. This quickly changed into something more theatrical after seeing some other Pins.

Fox Ballet? Of course that is normal, right? I would need just one model and a wonderful make-up artist – I knew just where to go for that, but I didn’t know any professional ballet dancers. Twitter to the rescue.

Within the hour I had contact from two dancers. You gotta love the power of Social Media sometimes.

Sharing the Pinterest board with both my model and chosen make up artist meant that everyone knew what I had in mind. It contained poses for Rebecca to look at and hair and make up for Maria to take ideas from.

I love seeing my concept become a reality. Also the look on Rebecca’s face when she saw the transformation, magic!

The actual shoot was fun and my fantastic fox was able to make some beautiful lines and shapes in the field we were using.

018 022 091 173 205 295Fox & feather pin

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I think over the years and certainly more recently with the glitz and sparkle of Strictly Come Dancing there has been a lot more emphasis on learning to dance and especially for a wedding first dance. So maybe we will be seeing more ballet dancing foxes?

With thanks to a gorgeous vintage boutique in Ledbury for supplying the stunning delicate lace blouse. The lovely people of Juice Collection for the loan of their highly sought after feather lapel/hat pins. All sorts of creativeness and beauty by Maria of Sprinkle Magic. Of course, this wouldn’t have happened without my very own ballet dancing fox and good sport Rebecca White of The Starlight Company

If you are interested in a collaborative creative photoshoot, Spring 2016 then get in touch – mel@melaniechadd.co.uk

 

Perthshire Wedding Photography

You may have seen from my Full Stop Next Chapter blog posts that I have recently moved to Scotland? If not pop over there after and see what I have been up to but for now I would like to let you in on a couple of secrets. I just wanted to introduce myself as a Perthshire wedding photographer.

Next year my full day wedding photography prices will remain at 2015 prices. Not a penny more but still the same creative and unobtrusive style.

If you are not a big fan of having your photograph taken then this is something we can work on? Let’s not keep you from your guests with huge amounts of posed photos – keep it short and sweet and you can celebrate with your loved ones and I can capture your day as it happens naturally. The best images are always the ones that just play out on their own.

Sometimes spending twelve months or more planning every single detail you may not get chance to enjoy them on the day. The table centre pieces. The matching socks you bought for the Groomsmen. Even the Brides hair and make up. This is all part of my job to ensure I freeze time so in twelve months or twelve years you can enjoy your wedding all over again.

All your images will be provided to you on a USB stick to print as you wish.

As a small token toward lowering the carbon footprint of your wedding I also gift a tree to you as a couple. This will be planted on your behalf and you will be sent an e-certificate. Also a cotton tote shopping bag again to help look after our beautiful environment.

I am looking forward to Perthshire wedding photography in 2016. I look forward to hearing from you.

 

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*Please note I can provide individual quotes for your  wedding day.

The copyright for images will remain with me.*

Bride and Groom photo on mobile phone

Unplugged Wedding

So, you’ve planned EVERYTHING. Every single flower, hair and loved one is in the right place, right? How do you feel about those loved ones not really being there? Not giving their full attention? How about an unplugged wedding?

There has been some debate about asking your loved ones not to take photos for their own memories or to share. One I think can only be judged by each couple. Personally I like the idea of my friends relaxing and enjoying the day but I’m aware this wouldn’t suit everyone.

Bridesmaids checking social media. Fife wedding

Be present

The world already has enough distractions and our lives are fast paced and full on but how do you fancy asking your family and friends to turn off mobile phones, cameras and tablets etc? Even if it’s just for the ceremony, the important bit where you get to say “I do” and kiss the love of your life!

This morning, I am sat at my PC listening to BBC Radio 2 and the Pause for Thought segment. They spoke about the pop stars who are asking people attending their concerts to turn phones off and actually enjoy and take in the whole experience. We’ve all been guilty of it. Wanting to be the first of their friends to boast on social media where they are and how “#amazing” it is. But how do they know? They’ve spent the last 10 minutes trying to take either a video or a series of photos and then upload it through a poor 4G signal. It was also said on the radio that you are not truly there unless you’re giving it your full attention.

What is more important – to get photo’s or to actually experience the concert, carnival or YOUR WEDDING?

I’ve also recently seen on a social media wedding group someone asked “as a Bride to be, I’m wondering where do I keep my phone on the big day?” My initial reaction was to wonder why on earth would you need your phone on your wedding day. Those nearest and dearest to you will be right there celebrating with you. I could understand later on in the evening when you want a couple of selfies on the dance floor with your pals. But if ever there is a day when you don’t need your phone, it’s your wedding day.

Wedding ceremony outside at Dunkeld House Hotel, Perthshire

It’s your day

Don’t be afraid to ask your guests to be present at your big day, after all you will have a photographer who you have paid a lot of money for. Leave them to take the photographs for you. There are times when even the photographer is not allowed by the church to shoot during the ceremony. It’s always worth checking this before you book.

It may be a good idea to let your guests know in advance. So pop something in their invite. Something like this:

“The Bride & Groom have asked that you share in their wedding fully and not through the lens of a camera or mobile device. They have hired an amazing photographer ………………………. who will be capturing the ceremony and will share the images after.”

Maybe just a reminder in the order of service too? A gentle reminder and reinforcement of your wishes by your officiant may help too.

Best way to make sure your wedding is then seen by everyone who attended is to arrange with your photographer to do Sneak Peeks of maybe four images on Social Media or their website within a couple of days. This way they can be shared, liked or just looked at to help re-live your day.

Bridemaid takes photo of the Bride

Unplugged wedding

I thought I would write about this because there seems to be more and more emphasis on being present. An unplugged wedding is a sure fire way to ensure that everyone enjoys the day.

From a photographer’s point of view it’s always nice not to have to compete with screens. I much prefer taking photos of laughter and joy.

Just a little food for thought for your wedding day. However you choose to spend your day I’m sure it will be amazing.

 

 

Bride arriving at the church with her Father

Absence of Loved Ones

This post is quite close to my heart, although I am not married, nor planning one, my Dad would not be present when (or if) I finally do. Sadly my Dad passed away suddenly, one year ago this week. This being the first anniversary I am still struggling with my loss and can’t believe he has gone. It’s all very raw. Neither my two sisters or I will have our Daddy at our wedding. So how would we mark the absence of loved ones?

I know I am not in this boat alone. Two dear friends that I grew up with  also lost their Dad’s – all within 6 months of each other. So, how do you plan your wedding and involve those who cannot be there in body to celebrate with you? No matter how long ago they passed it’s always nice to remember people, and why shouldn’t they be a part of your day? Here’s a few idea’s……

1. Wear something that reminds you of them. This may be Grandma’s pearl earrings or Dad’s tie or cufflinks.

2. Toast to their memory. A mention during the speeches would be a lovely tribute.

3. Save them a seat.  Place a single rose or small bouquet on the chair either before the ceremony starts or as a part of the ceremony.

4. Have a Photo Table. This is my favourite. Photo’s of family members at weddings or family gatherings. A nice way to reminisce with family.

PHOTO TABLE

 

 

 

 

 

 

It doesn’t matter if it happened last week, last year or ten years ago – there is still going to be a hole. Don’t ignore it. It’s okay to shed a tear for the absence of loved ones and know they will ALWAYS love us.

Big hugs

Mel xx

 

 

Bluebell woodland in Perthshire, Scotlan

Tree Planting to offset your Wedding Carbon Footprint

At home I do everything I can to re-use, up-cycle or recycle, so I thought it was about time I transferred eco-friendly ethos to my business. Thinking about how I would like to do this I decided that giving something back to the environment would work well. One of the best ways to do this is by planting trees. So I have decided to gift a tree planting to each one of my wedding clients to offset carbon footprint of your big day..

This will be included in your package when you book full day wedding coverage with me.

During the time you spend planning your big day think of all the trips to your venue, church and shopping. That’s already a lot of miles! What about food miles? How your food gets to your venue? How far will some of your guests be travelling? All the preparation I will do before your wedding, including visiting your church, venue and meetings with you, my happy couple. It all adds up.

Church Wedding

Your wedding tree can help to offset up to 1 tonne of carbon dioxide throughout the life of the tree. By planting a wedding tree you can help maintain and improve new woodlands.

Cairngorms woodland

How it Works

You book your full day wedding photography with me. After your big day I offset all the travelling etc that I/we will have done during the preparations etc and dedicate a tree planting in your honor. You can also have a say in where you would like this tree to be planted, anywhere across the UK. You will also receive an e-certificate (not paper) from the company.

Should you wish to have more than one planted this can also be arranged (at further cost).

If you are trying to keep your carbon footprint low then remember in Perthshire we have AMAZING wedding suppliers (food, drink, transport, venues oh and photographers). If you need help with sourcing anything or anyone please do contact me and I may be able to help.

For those of you who are already booked with me, this will also be included in your package.

For the Family Lifestyle sessions I do around Perth & Kinross – at the end of each year I will make a donation to plant several tree’s for this footprint also.

Just to give you an idea of the carbon footprint of your wedding try using this calculator.

Wedding couple at Kinnoull Hill in Perthshire