Category Archives: wedding photography

St David’s Cathedral Wedding

Nia & Lee’s Wedding

St Davids Cathedral / Wolfscastle Hotel Pembrokeshire

Hello there, David here from

This weekend saw me in Pembrokeshire West Wales for a couple of Weddings. – For the next couple of years I am going to be shooting a lot of weddings in West Wales – I should point out that I am based just outside of Birmingham in the West Midlands.  I moved to the Midlands early 2010 after spending 6 years in Pembrokeshire – this is why I have so many weddings down there !

So back to the wedding of Nia and Lee, If you remember a little while ago I visited Dublin for an engagement shoot – Well it was Nia and Lee’s engagement shoot and last friday saw the wedding take place.  I was so excited when I heard that Nia and Lee were getting married at Saint Davids Cathedral in Pembrokeshire – its such an amazing wedding venue and makes for photographs you will want to cherish forever – the light in the Cathedral is amazing from a photographers point of view.

Following the wedding A reception was held at The Wolfscastle Hotel just outside of Haverfordwest in Pembrokeshire.

The following is just a sneak peek as I have just started to go thru the photos, I always like to get one or two up so the bride and groom can check them out while on honeymoon and its amazing how many emails I get from couples from far away exotic places.

As this is just a sneak peek I will keep the story short and save it for the full story which will be posted in a few weeks time.

The first photo is of Lee and the boys – this shot was actually a grab shot, I was walking towards the entrance at the back of the cathedral when I noticed a few people taking a shot of the boys, I quickly jumped in, grabbed this shot and the following one and then left them to it – its kind of a posed candid shot if that makes sense.

st Davids cathedral wedding photos

and here is a head and shoulders version – slightly more relaxed as I got the boys to undo their jackets

black and white shot of a groom and his groomsmen

Shortly after this Nia arrived in a beautiful wedding car – I have some great shots of them but they are saved for the full story.

Here is Nia walking thru the main door of St Davids Cathedral

getting married at st davids cathedral

As I said before, St Davids Cathedral is a photographers dream, in this shot, Nia had just walked down isle and was met at the front of the Cathedral by Lee – I love the detail in this photograph.

wedding photo of st Davids cathedral

And a little closer – I love the details of the roses and the bows in this shot – they lead the eye into the couple

married at st davids cathedral pembrokeshire

and talking about those roses, I snagged this shot shortly after

pembrokeshire wedding photography

Just after I took this photo, this young lady stepped into the isle to get  a better look, unaware I was behind taking photos – she was standing there watching what was going on and I like to think that she was starting to plan her own dream wedding………… but back to my story – so she was watching the activity taking place up the front of the church when I took a photo – she heard my camera go click and turned around to check out what made the noise and I got the shot I wanted – I had waited for her to turn around because I knew it would make a good story telling photo.  Several years ago I took an almost identical photo to this one but with a young man in stead of a young lady.

reportage wedding photography pembrokeshire

Then she jumped back out of the way and I waited for another photograph I had wanted to capture.  This photo was inspired by one my good friend and great wedding photographer Kevin Mullins had taken – I had played around with it to create a black and white photo and loved it – as soon as I saw the original photo of Kevins I knew the next time I shot a wedding at a Cathedral I would want to try to create something similar.  I am happy to say I even surprised myself with how well the photograph turned out, it was exactly what I  had envisaged.

weddings at st Davids cathedral

One of the great things I like the most about working with an assistant is that I can totally control the light in the photos.  Helen my assistant carries around (as you will see in a later photo) a mono pod (big long pole for holding lights etc) and on top of he is a very expensive light  – by using this light to balance flash with the natural light you can create some fantastic shots, quickly and on the run.

I had Helen stand to the camera right (my right hand side) and using a flash and an umbrella to soften the flash light, we made beautiful light for the recessional (walking out of the church after being married)

The recessional if one of the really important shots imho – this photo normally produces some great facial expressions, this is when the bride is at her very best on her wedding day, happy, relieved, excited, MARRIED, in love and enjoying the fact the pressure of the wedding is over – you always get great photos during a recessional !!!!!!

resessional wedding photo

I just love Nia’s expression in this set of photos – Lee looks a lot more relaxed also.

Then it was outside for a quick confetti shot and then into the cars for a short ride to the Wolfscastle hotel

confetti photo outside st davids cathedral pembrokeshire

and what beautiful cars !

Back at Wolfscastle Nia and Lee had booked a fantastic entertainments company – believe me I know what I am talking about having been lucky enough to be the chosen photographer for 30 weddings a year for the last 4 years.

In this shot Nia is giving it up big time, the whole room was buzzing and jumping around – I have never seen people have such a good time !

and in this shot, Lee if looking over the guest signing book (the reason for the engagement shoot !!!!)

and last but not least on this sneak peek, here is a shot of the family – Did I mention this was an Irish wedding ? – well lots of the family got together to do a bit of local folk singing and some Irish dancing to boot.

weddings at wolfscastle hotel pembrokeshire

Well I hope you have enjoyed this quick sneak peek – My whole hearted congratulations go out to Nia and Lee on their wedding and my sin sear thanks for choosing us to be a part of it.


David Purlsow
Wedding Photographer
01299 250 114 / 0759 007 6666

WARNING – The next bit is for photographers and is boring photographer speak mumbo jumbo !

I say we all the time because I generally work with my long time assistant Helen – Helen is one of our best friends, she is god mother to both Soukie and Joshua and is my wifes best friend – she is also one of the hardest working people I have ever met – Helen lugs around my bags, reflectors, lighting equipment, phone, car keys etc – she keep me on track with formal photos, keeps me dry if it rains and generally makes sure from our point of view the wedding goes as smoothly as possible. – I have chosen a good few of the photos above for the benefit of not only Nia and Lee (who saw a 176 image slide show on the night of the wedding) but for other photographers – I have quite a number of photographers visit my blog and many are curious how I produce the light in my photos.

Well here is a shot of Helen in action – here she is holding a Quantum Qflash on top of the mono pod – this is where she was standing for the speeches ( the photo of Nia dancing and the photo of Lee  looking at the book)   The flash is triggered via Radio Poppers and utilizes the Nikon CLS system.  The radio popper is a radio transmitter that takes the IR CLS signal and converts it to Radio waves and transmits them to the flashes.

Getting your light off camera is the easiest way to elevate your photography to the next level – Yes working with an assistant adds additional cost to the weddings but the quality you get out of your photos by using them makes it all teh more worth while.

Get yourself a VALS as soon as you can – VALS – Voice Activated Light Stand !!!!!

nikon cls

I have moved from the back of the room to the front of the room to grab this photo – the light is actually set up for the other end of the room, so directly around her its a little too bright – but I only wanted it as a demo of the CLS system.