I first met Ayse at Belles Events Seaside Wedding Fair at one of my favourite venues, the Worthing Dome, which was also to be the location for her May wedding to fiancé, Vasileios. I loved their idea of incorporating Vas' Greek heritage into their day, with the most stunning sunshine-yellow flower arrangements from Byrd and Spry, filled with herbs and lemons in miniature greek urns (the scent was amazing!), plus plenty of Greek music and dancing. But like many brides (and grooms) I meet, she informed me that photography was a very important part of her wedding day, but that neither she, nor any of her family members, photographed well, and that they were all in fact completely un-photogenic. Noooo!
Well, for a start, no-one is completely un-photogenic, least of all a bride on her wedding day. It's simply a question of finding out what that person finds unattractive when they look at a photo of themselves, and using the right camera angles and techniques to light them in a flattering way. And second, looking at Ayse's lovely features and warm friendly smile, I just wasn't seeing what she saw. But what I did see, was a bride who needed to feel confident and have trust in her photographer. Building that trust well ahead of the big day is as important as turning up with the right equipment - without it, the couple may feel unable to relax, or nervous about how they'll photograph, rather than simply enjoying their day. So I explained to Ayse how we would do a fun and natural engagement shoot well ahead of the wedding (included in my packages), which would give her and Vas the chance to get used to me and the camera, and allow me a kind of 'trial run' to make sure I could help her to feel beautiful and confident on the day.
I quickly observed that they were most comfortable when interacting with each other, and that at least one of them closed their eyes on every other shot! Addressing the first point was easy - for me, wedding photos should be all about the interaction and emotion between the couple, and for the most part, I encourage couples to look at each other and pretend I'm not there. As for the eye-closing, I'll favour natural light wherever possible, which can help, and I'll simply take more shots! The natural light in the Worthing Dome is gorgeous, with the huge art deco windows facing the coast. And I came home with at least 50% more images than usual to allow for the closures!
As I write, I'm very much looking forward to meeting with Ayse and Vas at the Worthing Dome Vintage Tea Rooms tomorrow for a cuppa and a catch-up, and have already starting working on their album design in my head! I think you'll agree, no signs of an unphotogenic bride anywhere!
A big thank you to Ayse and Vas for allowing me to share their special day with you, I hope you enjoyed this selection of my images that tell their story. I'll be back at Worthing Dome in February 2015 for a candlelit winter wedding, with more to come next summer. But plenty of dates still available, so please do forward this blog to anyone considering getting married at a gorgeous Worthing venue. I can personally vouch for the quality of service provided by the wedding team and the delicious food! And of course, I'd love to be considered for the photography...