Category Archives: Photo of the week

Birstmorton Court Wedding Photography – Photo of the Week

Photo of the Week – June 23rd 20112

Hello there,

This weeks photo of the week comes from the amazing wedding of Helen and Jon which took place at the stunning Birstmorton Court wedding venue nr Malvern in Worcestershire

Yesterday was another very challenging day weather wise – I will be doing a full blog story shortly but a HUGE thanks goes out to the amazing venue staff, especially Sophie who really looked after us like kings and queens – if thats how they look after the hired help I can only imagine that the bride and groom and all their guests felt like nothing on earth as the hospitality was second to NONE, and I dont say that lightly.

Anyway the photos for the couple were a challenge as it rained quite heavily all day, you would have heard me say time and time before that if it rains on your wedding day that is NO excuse for your photgrapher not getting great shots for you and your album.  Well later when you see more photos – I might add a few more after my next shoot – you will see we pulled off some amazing photos despite the weather.

But to the photo of the week – Birstmorton Court has a lake around it, and the couple had fireworks.  The fireworks were on one side of the lake and the couple and guests were on the other.  We positioned the couple slightly in front of the guests and in front of a portable 600 Watt second studio light – we tested our exposure to get the couple perfectly lit in the dark and then waited for the fireworks to begin.

we had many great photos, but my personal favorite was this one

Its a 12 second exposure and shot at F16 at 200 ISO – it was shot at 16mm’s on a wide angle lens

hope you like

fireworks at birstmorton court

EDITED Monday 25th June

As promised here are a few more photos from the amazing Birstmorton Court Wedding Venue

Birstmorton Court Wedding Venue

the marquee at birstmorton set up for a wedding

function room at birstmorton court wedding venue

photo of a dress hanging up in the garden house of Birstmorton Court Malvern

As it rained most of the day we only got out to the white garden later at night, the couple challenged me to come up with something since we had no light really, this is what we did quickly before we ran off for a few more signature style images then fireworks

night time wedding photos at birstmorton court wedding venue

If you know the venue, at the back of Birstmorton Court is a fabulous garden, at the very far end is a stunning gate which Helen wanted photos with, again it had rained all day so we missed out on that but while we there there, I positioned her just inside the white garden and then shot a few shots with Mark (My assistant) holding a light just the other side – its hard to see for those who dont know the gate but if you do, you would instantly recognize it – its kind of a different take on the gate photo but I think it makes Helen look magnificent

the white garden at birst morton court

views from birstmorton court over the malvern hills

last but not least is Helen’s Favorite shot from the whole day – we had the greatest Vicar who when I asked if I could shoot the garter shot in church said, God created women so he would not mind – I had not expected so much leg but as a full blooded male I didnt mind,  When Helen saw this shot in the slideshow she was delighted with it !!!!!

photo from inside birstmorton church

and not knowing if I prefer black and white or colour, here is both side by side, you choose

black and white photos inside church

Naturally all of these images are one created with off camera lighting etc, I will be posting the full blog story shortly which will show the whole day off better, but wanted to share a few amazing shots from Helen and John’s amazing wedding

Swinfen Hall Wedding Photography

Photo of the Week – June 17th 2012

Hello there,  A little bit of time travel magic again this week, as June 17th’s photo of the week was actually taken on the 18th of June, I was pretty busy that I missed posting.

This weeks photo of the week come from the amazing wedding of Cymonie & Mark who were getting married at The breathtaking  Swinfen Hall Hotel in Litchfield.  I really enjoyed this wedding as I was not technically the lead photographer, the wedding booking had been taking by a very good friend of mine, a Birmingham based wedding photographer called Paul Goode from Paul Goode Photography Paul and I often work with one and other if we have free time, he will tag along with me and I tag along with him, that way we get to try out new things and if it does not work the couple have lost nothing.

I had on my Artsy Fartsy head and aimed to shoot the whole day looking for little bits of magic,  I also wanted to shoot the whole day using an ultra wide angle lens.

Anyway let me first start off showing you the photo then giving you a little background about it.

a couple getting married at swinfen hall hotel in litchfield

Okay, the effects on this photo are pretty much shot in camera, no special effects or photoshop magic here. Some of you will be looking at this photo and thinking hummmm thats nothing special and I hope some of you will be looking at it and saying to yourself, WOW thats amazing.  The only photoshop was the black and white conversion and a little adding of film grain.

so here is some background.

As I mentioned the couple got married at Swinfen Hall Hotel, the entire outside was had paper bag lanterns on the ground, I didnt really get any closeup shots of the bags and normally they only look good in the photos once lit.  The bags had something akin to a snowflake cut out patten on them

While Paul was setting up for the group shots, I took this wide angle shot more for testing light than anything else but it shows one of the bags.

The back of Swinfen Hall Hotel

After I took this photo, I walked down the stairs to the grass area below to see what a wide angle shot would look like, as i walked back up I noticed the bag and the patten, I took a quick test shot to see if I could pull off the effect I wanted, here it is

looking thru bag

Checking it out on the back of the camera, I knew it would work, so went ahead and got a lot closer and shot the photo at the top of this post.

The thing (in my mind about this photos is this) Cymone had spent a long time planning every little detail of the day, these lanterns were part of her preparation and therefor its a detail shot that has lots of meaning to the couple.

later that night we also did some of my Signature style shots which made full use of the grounds and the amazing venue.

here are a couple

staffordshire wedding photographer


night time photo fo swinfen hall wedding venue

west midlands wedding photographer

black and white wedding photo

amazing first dance wedding photos

wedding photography in staffordshire - first dance photos



Photo of the Week 20th May 2012

(a little bit late but photo of the week for may 20th)

I will move this in a few weeks into its rightful place in time but for now its out of sync,

May was a crazy month for me with 6 weddings that I am just catching up now !

This photo was actually taken around 18th months ago, its of Tree and Tom who’s wedding was at Gelli fawr in Pembrokeshire.

This was a technically difficult photo to pull off as there are 5 lights lighting the couple and the rocks, The whole photo was lit with speed lights (nikon SB800’s) and radio poppers to provide the wireless triggering.

The main light on the couple comes from a beautydish above them by about 12 feet, there is also one light to camera left lighting the side of the rocks and proving spill light on the couple to add some fill

There are two more lights lighting the rocks 1 from the front and one brom behind to give me a nice cut out from the sky – rim lighting for rocks if you like.

The last light is about 30 feet from the couple to camera right which rims them and also picks out the very right hand side of the rocks.

I have always LOVED this photo, it was from a great series and the sky colours combined with Tree’s dress just rocks if you ask me.

The shot took about 15 minutes to set up but its a shot the couple wanted and were willing to wait for

The sun had technically set so the exposure was long but since the flash would freeze the couple I didnt mind,

1/8th  second at F8 ISO200

anyway, here it is.

Gellifawr wedding photos

Photo of the Week – June 3rd 2012

Hello there,

A slight change this week for my photo of the week – this photo actually taken yesterday (on the 3rd of June) is not one of my signature images, not one with lots of creative lighting or one that showcases the bride and groom, its not an amazing detail shot.

Yesterday was my wettest wedding in years, it was also the wedding with possibly the biggest bridal party in a long time.  When I say it was wet, I am not joking it was belting down all day – well actually it started in the morning, stopped for the actual wedding itself but started again less than 10 minutes after Victoria and Andrew left the church so all the group photos had to be shot inside.

so after careful consideration we picked the best window in the venue (where the string quartette had set up – sorry ladies and gents) after talking it thru with the couple we asked the string quartette to move and then setup for the photos.  I used a 600WS battery operated studio flash and got a reading of around F 11 – I then went thru the group photos.

Then it came time for the Bridal Party shot and I have to say I am delighted with how it turned out, 19 people in one photo, shot inside on a dark and wet Sunday afternoon – I have to thank all of the girls who where amazing in putting up with me all day, honestly I was in my element surrounded by such a happy bunch of pretty young ladies to photograph all day – the guys, well they looked great too !

So as I still sit here watching the concert outside of Buckingham Palace – Peter Kay just came on and Mrs P has run me a bath – so here it is – enjoy

group photos inside

Photo of the Week – May 27th 2012

Okay, this is a bit of time travel magic, I missed a couple of weeks so this photo actually came from one of my 3 weddings over the weekend of June 2nd 2012.

Something quite simple here, Rebecca my bride for the day had a marquee for her wedding breakfast, it was a nice day albeit slightly damp outside but nice and light and bright – this made for great light quality inside.  The photo was taken during the grooms (Michael’s) speech and was at an emotional part – As a manual shooter to me its all about getting the skin tones right, so I spot metered off the brides face – this naturally caused much of the ambient light to blow out slightly but gave me fantastic tones on my bride.

She is just dabbing away a tear that is running down her face here, and I love the feeling of the moment.

The black and white conversion was done with Yervants Black and White lab colour technique

The technicals of the image are – ISO 3200  1/125th sec, F4 – Custom W/B – Focal length was 200mm

hope you like

emotional wedding photography

Just to put it into context, and I am sure Michael wont thank me for this one 🙂  but here is a shot of the groom around 2 seconds earlier.

black and white wedding photo